Graduates 2021: Erin Keen: MA Sequential Design/Illustration

The body of work I made during my MA explores the way we arrange our objects within a space.

Initially I began investigating other people’s personal space, but the lockdown and isolation period imposed forced restrictions upon my work.  I started to document the small world available to me using photographs, painting, sculpture and digital drawing. I developed a process through which to create work and this process of image making became essential to my practice. 

Please tell us a bit about your work and your influences

I had always struggled to articulate why I found the way a space is arranged so interesting. However, my creative practice enabled me to understand that, as someone with a very chaotic mind, this ‘tidying away’ of my visual research into these imagined rooms, brought me a sense of calm.

I like to play with scale, making tiny objects and then drawing them into my imagined spaces; this bases the environments in reality and gives them a familiarity, yet also creates a surreal almost uncanny feel.

How have you found your course and time at Brighton?

I have loved my time studying at Brighton, I went into the course feeling very uncertain about the direction of my work and quite lacking in confidence. However, certain aspects of the course have massively increased my confidence, such as having to present our ideas to peers and tutors. They really nurture and encourage lots of open discussion of ideas and I have felt very supported by staff and students. The facilities are also great and I especially loved being able to use the bookbinding workshop with Helen.

How did you choose your course – why did you choose to study Fine Art?

 I knew the course had a great reputation but my decision was made easy when I went on an open day and saw the campus. I also remember during my interview with Graham, he said that they really supported students beyond the degree which was very nice to hear.

What are your plans after graduation?

I have lots of different plans now I’ve finished! I’m hoping to pick up more client work and I’ve got a book coming out soon which is written by concert pianist Cordelia Williams-Charlton, it’s a book for parents about how to bring music into your child’s daily life and I’ve illustrated it. In terms of my masters project I feel it’s something which could continue indefinitely, I’m so grateful to my tutors Lizzie and Ally for making me realise this isn’t the end of something but the beginning of an exciting chapter!

Find out more about MA Sequential Design/Illustration

See more of Erin’s work on Instagram

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