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Graduation stories - through clearing to creative graphic design

14 August 2015

Callum Tosh didn’t know what he wanted to do after school until the very end of his final year when the deadline to apply for university had already passed.

Thinking he was too late to become a student, he began looking at other ways to become a graphic designer and saw that our School of Arts, Media and Computer Games had spaces available in clearing.

He applied and, in July, graduated with a First Class Honours degree after receiving the Hannah Maclure Award for Best Curation of a Project Space for his exhibition at the Abertay Digital Graduate Show in May.

Here he tells us about his time at Abertay.

Choosing Abertay

“I wasn’t certain what I wanted to do when I was at school, so didn’t apply for university when everyone else did. But towards the very end of high school I realised that I wanted to become a graphic designer, so I started looking into opportunities where I could develop my skills.

“I gained a place at college, but then came across Abertay when people suggested I look into clearing, and the course was just what I was looking for.”

Graphic design

“Getting to study in the School of Arts, Media and Computer Games was a great experience, as it gave me the opportunity to get involved with a wide range of different briefs and projects – from more traditional graphic design tasks to working with game development students.

“It has also given me the perfect chance and facilities to grow my interests and skills in the creative fields and to seek out projects that I've been able to take on as a freelance designer.”

Winning an award

“For my Honours project and dissertation I explored modern symbolism in the context of technology, such as loading symbols, icons and other images that we see on a daily basis and don't really think about.

“It was a really interesting process going from little threads of ideas and growing them through research that all culminated into the dissertation and final Honours project which I got to display at the end of year degree show.

“I received an award for the way I curated my exhibition space, which was a huge honour and a great confidence boost.”

Inspiring lecturers

“The whole lecturing team in AMG are a credit to the university. The support they offer is extremely valuable and they all have their own specific skillsets so you can always find someone to help guide you through any problems you may be having.

“In particular Belinda Langlands and David Lyons were the lecturers who I had the most contact with and were always there with solid but honest advice to get me through briefs.”

Best bits

“I would definitely recommend Abertay to anyone looking into coming to University. The whole experience has been great, but getting to meet so many people and make a whole new group of friends over the course of the four years has probably been the best part of the University experience.”

Next steps

“I am currently searching for a full time position in a graphic design firm whilst working part-time and trying to track down freelance design projects to help build my portfolio and gain experience.”

For more information about Callum and his work take a look at his behance portfolio.

To find out more about our courses in clearing, please visit our dedicated page.

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