Now in its third year, the “Im–print! Im–press!” live-brief challenge for Ravensbourne University Year 2 Department of Design Practice students invited them to propose a design that celebrates the materiality and physicality of print through paper, foil and print production.

The brief, which is set in collaboration with G. F. Smith, Foilco and Baddeley Brothers encouraged students to consider all aspects of the design process including budget, quantity and format restrictions.

Beautiful plumage

Inspired by Waldo Nells’ microscopic peacock feathers photography and the opening and closing movement of the plumage, the winning design was created by Graphic Design student Tania Pereira. Using a range of folding and construction techniques, Tania’s design explores the dimensionality of paper to create a compelling design that catches the eye.

Drawing on the stunning blue and green hues often seen in peacock feathers, the design used Colorplan Tabriz and Forest paper 175gsm to showcase the way a simple three-dimensional paper object can become a complex symmetrical shape. Tania also incorporated gold foil, 6884NY, through the middle of the design to highlight detailed areas and add gravity to the model.

A career defining experience

Reflecting on the process of responding to a live brief and her experience of taking part in the challenge Tania mentioned: “Working on the live-brief set by Baddeley Brothers, G.F Smith and Foilco has been an amazing experience as part of my degree at Ravensbourne University. It has been really insightful, developing an understanding of different materials, working within a budget and seeing how print production methods such as foil blocking, scoring and shape cutting are done.

“Taking part in the challenge has helped me to find my pathway and decide what type of design work I enjoy doing and want to pursue as part of my career.”

With some 60 students taking part in this year’s challenge, the panel of judges were treated to multiple designs, featuring waves, cubes and spheres. Commenting on the winning entry the judges said: “Tania’s ideas had clearly been tested and developed from the very start, resulting in a visually exciting and well thought through design.”

Adding a new dimension to the competition for this year the winning design is on display at the G.F Smith Show Space in London until the 18th April 2019.

Explained: Making up The Courtship Ritual

Here’s a 1-hour process edited down into a 1-minute video of how to make the pieces.

Start by folding along all the scored lines, then squeeze the two ends together and the shape sort of comes on its own.

After folding and squeezing 8 sheets, 4 are stuck together and another 4 together. This is done by sticking heavy-duty double-sided tape on the tabs on the side which has the foil and then stick the pieces together. Once you have 2 semi-circles made of 4 sheets stick the 2 semi-circles together to create 1 big circle.