Cumbria Crack

Design students open up their senses to nature’s creativity

Creative Landscapes participants at Rydal Water, 2015
Creative Landscapes participants at Rydal Water, 2015

[S]tudents from Staffordshire University are displaying their artistic creations at the Creative Landscapes exhibition, following a series of workshops designed to enable a greater understanding of the creative process through physical exploration.

Following an induction to papermaking, a tour of James Cropper’s paper mill in Kendal and collaboration with paper passionist, Debbie Wigglesworth, first year BA Graphic Design and Illustration students used the workshops to produce print-based pieces centred on the theme of paper.

The exhibition, based in the Warehouse Cafe at the Brewery Arts Centre in Kendal from 22 July to early September 2016, documents the landscapes of Grasmere and Rydal Water according to the five senses.

DSC_0059Project coordinator and graphic design educator Lucy Brown said: “The courses are centered around creative thinking, problem solving, design and experimentation through both digital and traditional media. The aim is to develop versatile practitioners who have the confidence to experiment creatively and generate strong ideas for a wide range of projects, so collaboration, experimentation and engagement in a wide range of related visual practices are encouraged.”

The project has been a great platform for the students to put theory into practice and learn from real life.  The exploration of a physical landscape acted as a metaphor for the varying ways in which one might traverse the design process.

Phil Wild, CEO from James Cropper, added: “We’re committed to investing in the designers and artists of the future – after all, papermaking is an art form itself. It’s great to see that both the tour of the paper mill and the beautiful countryside in which we’re based have helped inspire and educate a new generation.”

James Cropper sponsored the student work with the supply of several paper stocks and the exhibition publication, while Staffordshire University has kindly sponsored the exhibition itself.

For more information about the Creative Landscapes project visit

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