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Some students hate critiques

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Some students hate critiques. Why?. Think about the issues you have with critiques: Do you find them scary or do they seem irrelevant? This presentation will discuss these issues and how you can make them work for you to get the best grades. Expectations.

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Think about the issues you have with critiques:

Do you find them scary or do they seem irrelevant?

This presentation will discuss these issues and how you can make them work for you to get the best grades.



Setting your own expectations high will mean you get the most out of the course. That includes setting yourself high expectations for your critiques.

What do you expect to give or to get from a critique?


Your future

You future is about sharing what you make. Critiques are the starting point for sharing and selling your ideas. As such they are an important industry skill.

This is what we are in the game for!



Why is it important to critique work?

How can you get feedback on what you have created?

Can you be sure that you have really pushed yourself and your ideas?



How do critiques make you work harder?

Do they help you have something to aim for, make real deadlines or give you an incentive to work hard?



Think about critiques as an investment, rather than losing time.

What actual practical skills can you develop: presentation, communication, listening, responding, body language, persuasion, networking, analysis, pitching, selling etc.



When would it be a good idea to have a critique? They don’t have to be at the end of the project, they can also be for key stages in the design cycle, for example when you expect a prototype or series of experiments to be done.


One size

Critiques aren’t a one size fits all practice, you might like to try:

Friends / Test- audience / Related to marking criteria / Getting written feedback / Open discussion / Key question focused – having specific questions / Anonymous / Focus group – on a specific topic



Confidence is the single most important factor in getting ahead in art, design and media.

Critiques have the potential to change students from tiny mice into confident artists, designers and practitioners.



The critique isn’t something that should be done to you, it should come from you.

By the end of the year – the ideal scenario is where you have the confidence and focus to do your own critiques.





Doing the critique is one thing, but making use of the information is another. How can you document them?

Try, notes, reflective logs, photos, video, notes from others etc.


Don’t be afraid

Think about how your course will change your life?

Critiques will mean you get different ideas and get pushed into areas that you are not comfortable with – but we are all on your team and all of us are your friends, so don’t be afraid.



Through critiques you will realise that you don’t have to produce “Beautiful” work. That art is about ideas, not perfection.



If you want people to listen then the work has to say something to them directly. What does your work say?

From the outset, talk about why the work is important, why it will help the rest of us see things differently.


Comfort zone

Can you learn about your own feelings and attitudes toward making?

Its really important to use the time to find out what you comfort zones are that you get stuck in. Other students will quickly notice that you have done the same kind of thing for each project.


Style shudder

Should you avoid discussing a topic or issue because you don’t like it?

Try not to respond to comments by saying something like: “that just isn’t my style”, or “I don’t like that”. Picasso went through his whole life trying to find a style – that’s what made him great.


Escape the sketchbook

Escape the sketchbook, they can trap you in their small A4 world.

Think about why you might only produce substantial work at the very last minute?

Doing critiques will mean that you have to present something: an object, a movie, a sculpture or painting that can stand on its own.


Art is


without an audience

Why is it so important to have an audience?

If people can’t see it then how can it have an impact? Will it just remain ideas on paper?

It is important to remember these points when going in to a critique.



Should we just stop there?

Find anyway you can to share and discuss your ideas. Sharing will give you more ideas that you can feed off and keep invigorated. Sharing is the artists food.



How can you prepare?

Can you think about the main points that you want to discuss:

What inspired you, why you went in this direction, where you want to go?



Should it just be others asking you questions?

Can you have some questions that you want others to answer?

What do you want to know?



How can you present your work in the best light?

What does it need to make it stand out?

Can you prepare the space and the presentation a little?