Eco-friendly BMet student designs showcased on Perry Barr Hoardings
Recycling and single use plastics issues have been brought to life on hoardings in Perry Barr, thanks to captivating designs by BMet art and graphic design students.
The special industry placement began in February with leading property developer Lendlease, for their Perry Barr Residential Scheme hoarding project, which has an environmentally-friendly theme.
Students at BMet’s Matthew Boulton College, were given a project brief to engage as many people as possible across communities with their designs at the development site on Wellhead Lane.
They were tasked with focusing on an issue that has relevance and impact on everyone and future generations in Perry Barr and beyond, alongside considering the theme of “community involvement – pride and ownership”.
Topical issues including reusing, reducing and refusing the use of single use plastics, alongside the importance of recycling can now be seen in vibrant designs, with key information and stats – all put together by the talented students.
Due to Covid restrictions, most activities for the placement were conducted virtually alongside Lendlease’s employees who play a key role in construction and development and the students’ teachers.
Among other things, the organised sessions enabled the students to pitch their ideas to visually showcase the topical issues affecting people locally and globally to each other and to key Lendlease representatives.
Starting with thorough research into recycling and single use plastics that helped the students obtain pivotal facts and statistics, they then built on their initial raw sketches by using digital technologies. The use of animals including crabs, badgers, birds and whales were also a key feature in the designs.
The groups of three and four students were praised by the Lendlease panel of experts for their designs. Four students were chosen as winners and the remaining 12 students as runners up, although all student designs are featured in some way on the hoardings.
Here is what some of the winning BMet students had to say after seeing their “environmentally friendly” displays:
“I now feel more experienced to work with established reputable businesses and with real live employer briefs.
“It is great that we are getting some great exposure about important issues that affect all our lives and I appreciate that opportunities like this don’t come along often.
“My plan is to work within branding product design in the future and due to the skills and knowledge I have gained during this industrial placement, I feel closer to my dream!”
“Working on this very rewarding opportunity, has taught us a lot of skills that are needed to succeed within creative industries and to work alongside clients.
“We had the chance to use different design programmes and applications including illustrator and ProCreator, to really highlight environmental challenges in eye-catching ways. Seeing the work face to face is really amazing!
“This experience makes me more confident about pursuing a career within digital marketing, as you really have to create something special to be able to sell something.”
By graduating as “industrial cadets” with an official badge, the participating students were officially recognised as obtaining a variety of skills and competencies including: careers motivation and awareness, creativity and innovation, communication and collaboration, teamwork, critical thinking and problem solving, digital skills and personal and interpersonal development.
Nellie Davies, Director for Creative and Digital at BMet’s Matthew Boulton College said: “This industrial placement is an invaluable opportunity for both our students and BMet as a whole.
“As a college, we continually strive to equip our learners with real and relevant experience that will prepare them for their future careers. By working with a leading and supportive employer on a live “community-focused” brief with fantastic results, we are pleased to have achieved just that.
“Moreover, constructive feedback and support from Lendlease enabled the students to obtain the final designs that are in full and vibrant display now!”
Birmingham City Council is currently working on a number of upcoming developmental initiatives and plans in the area, including the 2022 Commonwealth Games. The captivating designs form part of a key scheme and vision to help deliver wider regeneration in Perry Barr.