On Tuesday I spent a hugely rewarding and inspiring eight hours with Jefferson Hack (co-founder of Dazed & Confused and editor-in-chief of AnOther Magazine) as we judged the Media Design Award for Graduate Fashion Week 2012 over at Earls Court II in London. The nomination list was 40 students strong and we met and spoke to each and every one of them as they talked us through their graduation projects and future career hopes.
The multi-disciplinary nature of modern fashion related degrees means that you can start out thinking you want to major in one area, and end up specialising in quite another. From the same Fashion Communication course at Northumbria University, for example, came a talented photographer, an inspiring illustrator and yet another who we thought could easily walk straight into a job at a top name advertising agency. This was no straight single category to judge. We met journalists, digital marketeers, creative directors, stylists, photographers and designers of fashion and printed textile. In that mix we came across a passionate young journalist researching into the frontier where luxury fashion meets science and technology, a marketing brainiac who came up with a clever 360 digital campaign idea for, ironically, Dazed & Confused magazine (Ami Collins, who went on to win the Innovation Award), and a reportage photographer with such a natural eye for male beauty he has already been tapped by Urban Outfitters and Adidas. Not to mention the student who taught herself how to create a bona fide App, and the one who created moving image clothes in a digital program to demonstrate the synergy between fashion and music.
What were we looking for in the winner? We didn't know exactly, but figured it would become apparent as we went through our search; and it did. Our short list consisted of eight people, all of whom showed a dexterity in their ability to communicate fashion through multi-media channels. As always with these things, natural talent, creativity, flair and genuine editorial originality always shines through and when we sat with Kerrie Donnelly of UCA Epsom we knew she was our winner. Kerrie, from Dundalk in Co. Louth Ireland, who turned 20 on Monday, described her project as a "magazine that explores the symbolism and transience of flowers in art, fashion and culture."
It was the professional and visionary way Kerrie took on the role of both editor-in-chief and creative director of her magazine that clinched her the Media Award. She imaginatively researched her subject resulting in spot on artist/photography commissions including from Jane Valena Paludanus and Anna Schuleit. Kerrie created a sophisticated, clever and really rather beautiful magazine, while demonstrating her own journalistic flair. I wanted to whip Thorn magazine from her and take it home. I've chosen a few of my favourite pages to share below, but scroll to the bottom you'll find a link to the full magazine for your flicking pleasure.
Thorn cover by Bethan Amy Sands
Jane Valena Paludanus
To enjoy the magazine in full go here