University of Westminster
Creative visual research on media and identities
 

We are keen to explore new forms of research which engage participants on a creative, artistic and/or visual level. Some previous and current/future projects are outlined here. You may find other projects are listed in relation to particular people or as external connections.
 

C U R R E N T   P R O J E C T S :
 

Young people's mediaworlds

A two-year research project (2008-10) using creative methods to explore how young people make sense of, and participate in, their complex media environments. Funded by the AHRC.
    

Children's virtual spaces

Research project, in collaboration with the BBC, on the development of the virtual world Adventure Rock and children's responses to it (2007-08). Funded by the AHRC and the BBC.
    

Constructing identities

Project in collaboration with Lego Serious Play (2005-07). Participants were asked to construct metaphorical models of their identities using Lego.
    

Oslo collaboration

We are a partner in the Mediatized Stories project, based at the University of Oslo and funded by the Research Council of Norway. [External site - opens in new window].
    

Creative Explorations

Book about creative research methods, including the Lego Serious Play study, published by Routledge in May 2007.
    

A Drawing a Day

Ongoing project in which, since May 2004, I have been doing a drawing a day ('more or less').
    

 
P R O J E C T S :   2 0 0 5  -  1 9 9 5
 

The Passport of Me Art and identity project (2004) in collaboration with Peter Bonnell at Royal College of Art. Young people were given a blank passport, art materials and polaroid camera, and asked to create a document recording aspects of themselves (tying in with the exhibition This Much is Certain).
Video Critical Website, launched April 2004, with much material and photographs, about this classic video project first published 1997. Young people in inner-city Leeds schools were encouraged and assisted to make videos about 'the environment', giving an insight into how they had processed media messages about environmental issues.
Celebrities & Aspirations Visual research (art) project (2003-04). Young people are invited to draw a celebrity or star that they would like to be, leading to an exploration of the lifestyles and aspirations that are associated with celebrity. The work also considers changing perceptions of gender identities. See illustrated talk about this work in progress.
Identizines Design project (2003). Students were asked to design a lifestyle magazine cover which would reflect, in some way, their sense of their own gender identity. See results in the Identizines gallery.
My Favourite Things Photography project (2003), developed by Paul Inman as part of Bournemouth Media School's Widening Participation programme. Young people create photographs of, and reflect upon, their 'favourite things'.
Tate Liverpool   Art project (2002). Children visiting the art gallery Tate Liverpool were invited to make artworks about media celebrities, giving an insight into the aspirations and lifestyles associated with stardom.
TV Living   Diary project (1999). 5,000 people wrote in-depth diaries about their lives, their media use, and the connections between the two. They produced 3.5 million words, which were then analysed. Sponsored by the British Film Institute.
Action! The Future Video project (1995). This article discusses an earlier project run by Vera Productions of Leeds, who worked with young people to make videos about the environment.

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