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Anglia Ruskin University news

The latest study and research news from Anglia Ruskin University

January 2011

Cambridge School of Art student captures City’s characters

Student book puts the focus on eclectic eccentric Cambridge characters.

Al, one of the Cambridge CharactersA Cambridge School of Art BA (Hons) Photography student has created a book celebrating the eccentric mix of individuals that make Cambridge such an eclectic and interesting city.

Julio Mosso came to Cambridge in 2005, from Santiagio in Chile via Spain and was intrigued by the mix of people that made up the city, from the transient population of students and travellers as well as more established members of the community often as familiar as the architecture. Having lived in many different places himself Julio recognises that it is the people themselves that are the essence of a place:

As Julio from Anglia Ruskin University explains:

‘Some people stand out and become part of the collective memory of a place. Often the most interesting characters haven’t set out to gain recognition, instead their notoriety was something to be found by the people who see them or hear their stories. In time they become the identity and the culture of the place and make it unique and special.’

Julio set about his project by interviewing people in the local community to establish which individuals stood out. Inevitably these intriguing individuals raise questions in the minds of the people who see them and Julio collected these questions together and then, armed with a camera and a Dictaphone, spent eight months tracing and photographing the Characters.

His photographs and transcripts of his recordings, along with drawings of the characters by 14 different artists, form his book: Cambridge Characters. His work sheds an interesting light on some of the inner workings of the City and those who populate it. Cambridge Characters captures an essence of Cambridge which is both obvious and hidden; some of the Characters are so familiar they cease to be anything other than a backdrop to the goings on of the City; here life is breathed back in to them. In the book we discover things we didn’t know: the rude awakening suffered by the barge dwellers from the early morning shouts of the coxes on the Cam.

The book is available to buy from Waterstones and from Blurb.com, where the book can also be previewed along with snippets of the interviews.

Back to UK student news.

Anglia Ruskin University students aim for picture-perfect graduation

London exhibition could lead to book deals with major publishers.

Image by Anthea Whitworth from Harlow, which will form part of the exhibitionAnglia Ruskin University students are putting themselves in the shop window by taking over a central London bookstore next month.

The Gallery at Foyles’ flagship Charing Cross Road store will host the Graduation Show for Anglia Ruskin University’s MA Children’s Book Illustration students from 1–10 February.

The MA, which is marking its tenth anniversary this year, is rated as one of the most highly-regarded Children’s Book Illustration courses in the world and has recently been filmed for a Japanese TV series featuring innovative academic courses in different countries.

Professor Martin Salisbury, the Course Leader, said: ‘The London graduation show is always an exciting and stressful time for the students. We are all especially excited by this year’s cohort, several of whom are already working with leading publishers.

Image by Chinese student Tingting Fan, which will form part of the exhibition‘This is the first year that we have shown at Foyles and we are looking forward to getting the show up and giving the invited editors and art directors from the industry a visual treat.’

Last year’s graduation show caused a flurry of excitement with Nadia Shireen’s witty, postmodern picturebook, The Good Little Wolf, being particularly popular, leading to a major publishing deal with the Random House Group.

Nadia said: ‘The course works closely with the publishing industry, which is invaluable for aspiring illustrators. A team from Egmont Publishing regularly visited us, and gave us insight into the ever-changing landscape of the industry, as well as personal feedback on our work.

‘The graduation show in London was attended by talent-spotters from all of the major publishing houses, which I think is a testament to the reputation of the course. At the graduation show I was approached by several publishers, and have signed to Random House Picture Books for a two-book deal.

‘For now at least, I’ve managed to quit the day job and am working full time on writing and illustrating books for children – a dream come true!’

The exhibition will feature original artworks, picturebook dummies, preparatory sketches and storyboards. Following its exhibition in London, the work will be displayed at the Ruskin Gallery in Cambridge from 2–10 March.

For more information visit: www.cambridgeMAshow.com.

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