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The University of Southampton
Winchester School of Art

Emily Erskine BA Textile Design (Printed Textiles pathway) 2021

Emily Erskine's Photo

I chose to study at WSA because of the fantastic facilities, huge studio spaces, plenty of tutor contact time and a brilliant library for research. But the facilities top everything for me! WSA is particularly focused on hand rendered skills, such as screen printing, which gives you a great band of knowledge to move into digital design.

The last three years, have been some of my favourite years to date. I have met amazing friends, developed my own personal skills, and have grown in confidence. Take each day as it comes, some days are harder than others, but keep striving to do your best and you will make it.

Although Winchester is a small city, there are plenty of student friendly pubs and bars such as Pitcher & Piano and Turtle Bay. There are lovely little cafes to enjoy with friends such as Josie’s, Forte and the Dispensary Kitchen. There are also lovely walks too, or if you like running, great running trails.

WSA has a small campus, so it is easy to recognise other students. Within the studios there is a family friendly feeling. I find it very easy to talk to other students, in the years below or above due to the way the course has been designed. I’ve enjoyed working through projects alongside peers in the studio, as it helps you bounce ideas off of one another and pushes your creativity to the next level.

One of my favourite projects was a live brief with Blendworth, a British interior textile design company. We had to produce a collection of interior repeats, using a variety of methods, such as screen printing, heat transfer and digital design. We mixed our own dyes and dyed our own fabric too. Working with a live brief gives you an insight into industry. It also opened doors for me, as I was offered a Blendworth work placement.

I think the most challenging part of university, in general, is learning to be more independent. Although this takes time, once you’ve grasped this, you are equipped with an important set of life skills.

I am currently exploring my options for after university. I am torn between studying an MA in Fashion Marketing to balance out my skill set for the fashion industry or moving into printed children’s-wear design. The university are helping us to prepare industry standard portfolios alongside career support and industry links.

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