Where can textile colour education take you?
SDC member Kate Lloyd reports on her colour education and membership journey.
The SDC have approached me to write a little about myself and about my involvement with them. I don’t really know what to tell you, except I feel so lucky to have access to a resource that so effectively brings together designers, technologists, students, academics and industry experts to share their thoughts, ideas and expertise on colour.
I began working with textile coloration whilst studying a BSc Textile Design and Design Management. The outcome of my BSc was a home textiles print collection (encompassing some of my favourite colours), which looked something like the images on the left.
I first became involved with the SDC as I started studying towards a PhD in Textile Science and Technology at the University of Manchester. My PhD is supervised by Dr Muriel Rigout, Prof Chris Carr and Dr Sonja Andrew, and explores the use of thermochromic colorants for application in commercial apparel.
Becoming involved with the SDC seemed like a natural thing to do as it so effectively brings together my interests in the fields of design, colour and technology. Through the SDC, I have attended visits to industrial printing facilities, as well as numerous lectures exploring a wide range of topics from the manufacture of corduroy, developments in printing technologies and sustainability in the supply chain. I have also enjoyed the SDC’s design competition events, where it has been exciting to see the work of talented students from all over the country.
I have also been fortunate enough to receive one of the SDC’s educational bursaries. As my PhD research progressed, I felt ready to present some of my findings—a colour measurement method suitable for thermochromic textiles. I particularly wanted to attend an international conference where I would be able to present my work to a completely new audience and learn more about other studies in my research area. It was for this reason that I applied for an SDC bursary.
I applied for and gratefully received a full SDC bursary, which enabled my attendance at the Autex International Textile Conference in Bursa, Turkey, in May 2014. At the conference I presented a research paper entitled ‘Development of a robust method for the dynamic colour measurement of thermochromic textiles’. I was very nervous during my presentation and was probed with some challenging questions—but I survived! The conference was a great learning experience, which I consider to be one of the highlights of my PhD. Presenting at the Autex conference would not have been possible without the support of the SDC, and for that, I remain ever grateful to the SDC .
In April I was informed that I was one of eight nominees for a Bursary Recognition Award and was invited to exhibit my PhD work at the SDC’s Day of Celebration in York. The Day of Celebration was a lovely event, where it was great to have the opportunity to say “thank you” to members in person and see how SDC bursaries had helped other students and professionals similar to myself. The day drew to a close with the awarding of medals and a formal dinner, where the winner of the Bursary Recognition Award was revealed.
I still cannot believe that I won the Bursary Recognition Award and I will be forever relieved that I did not fall over when the result was announced! I am delighted to have received the Award, which serves as a lovely reminder of the generosity and support of the SDC, as well as what the bursary helped me to achieve as part of my PhD.
I am now nearing the completion of my PhD, but continue to be very much involved with the SDC—particularly as a member of the North of England region committee. The SDC brings together such a wealth of knowledge and resources that I could not imagine being without it. I would urge all students working in the fields of colour and design to join the SDC and to make the most of its invaluable resources, as you never know where your membership journey will take you.
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