Graduates 2023: Anya Millard-Nash: 3D Design and Craft

“These three years have been so enriching and given me so many opportunities that I never thought I’d be able to have.”

Please tell us a bit about your work and your influences

My queerness is ever evolving, and I want my work to reflect that. Simply by being a queer person, I am deviating from societal expectations, so I have created a body of work which challenges the expectations of ceramics. I have distorted the feminine vessel form, used spray paint instead of glaze, left some pieces looking unfinished. Pink and purple holds significance within queer culture, particularly to lesbians. I have used plaster, a material which is usually used in the construction of other objects, to communicate the development of identity. Whilst I have used making to process some heavy feelings surrounding my queerness, I wanted the outcome to be a playful expression of identity.

How have you found your course and what made you choose it?

My course has given me so much freedom as a maker. I don’t think I could have had such a variety of specialist workshop experiences from any other course. All of the lecturers and technicians on 3D Design & Craft are so knowledgeable and it’s been really exciting to work with experts in craft and design.

My course was suggested to me by my sixth form 3D Design tutor. He saw that I would constantly jump between which material I liked working with and therefore a degree in 3D Design & Craft seemed like a great fit for me. I considered other courses at different universities but concluded that none were going to give me such a broad range of experiences and specialist skills as I could gain from 3D Design & Craft.


Was the location of your course in Brighton more important than you thought it would be?

My course is based at the City campus which is right in the centre of Brighton. It has been amazing to be doing a creative course in the middle of a city with so many creative people, places, and events, which have been a constant source of inspiration. More specifically to my final body of work, Brighton has allowed me to immerse myself in it’s thriving queer community, something I don’t think I would have been able to do in many other cities. Being in Brighton has allowed me to freely explore my queerness and therefore be comfortable enough in myself to dedicate my third year project to queer self discovery.


What are you plans after graduating

My plans after graduation are to continue my studies at the University of Brighton by completing a PGCE in Secondary Art and Design. I am so excited for this next year of my life, as arts education is something I am extremely passionate about. My course has given me such a great foundation to build upon for the PGCE as I have been able to develop such a variety of creative skills. I also intend to independently develop as a maker, and to revisit materials and process that I didn’t use during my final project in personal projects.


If you could give you 16 year old self any advice about going to University what would it be?

I would tell my 16 year old self that there is absolutely a place on an art course at university for someone from my background. I would really encourage other working class people who are considering doing a creative course to go for it! These three years have been so enriching and given me so many opportunities that I never thought I’d be able to have. I’d also tell myself not to be afraid to start networking and making contacts in the creative industry – I have found that so many craftspeople are so excited to share their experiences and wisdom and I really could have done with building some networking confidence earlier on in life!

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