BlogInto Uni

Meet: Jodie Newsum

Jodie Newsum

BA (Hons) Interaction Design Arts

Interaction Design, a space between technology, spatial design and the experimental.

Exhibitor and graduate Jodie, fills us in on building immersive environments for wine drinkers and trips to the Science Museum.

About Me

Tell us about yourself.

I’m from Romford in Essex which is just outside of London.

My work is very much all over the place. There’s never really one specific theme that I tend to stick to, so all my projects look completely different and vary in the topics they cover. For instance, I have one project called ‘Jouvence’ (hero image above) that focuses on how we could use at home genetic engineering treatments to live forever with all data being constantly uploaded to an app, and another project that involves building multiple gardens around London College of Communication (LCC) with a few other people on the Interaction Design Arts course.

Credit: ‘Ida Garden’ – Collaborators: Jodie Newsum, Rosie Allen, Marion Lagedamont, Joe Hoole, Greg Bailey.

Did you know right away what type of designer you wanted to be?

I had absolutely no idea what type of artist/designer I wanted to become. At school, I went between various different topics. At first I wanted to study interior architecture, then fashion, then sculpture. I was really all over the place for a while with no real idea of what I wanted to do.

My Work

What helped you decide what to study at uni?

During my foundation year at LCC, it was time to start picking courses to study at BA. My tutor suggested that I might like Interaction Design and urged me to go along to the open day. I went and immediately thought the course was amazing. The course leader Joel then mentioned that they would be exhibiting in the Science Museum a few weeks later where I saw that someone had made a giant game of Operation and that pretty much sealed the deal for me. That day, I knew that I wanted to study Interaction Design.

Credit: ‘Chair du Rhône’, a collaboration between Jodie Newsum, Rosie Allen and Viola Zini.

What’s the best thing you’ve done so far?

The best project I’ve done so far is probably the project I worked on for an exhibition called ‘The Rhône Touch’. This exhibition took place at Central Saint Martins’ (CSM) Theatre Bar for two weeks and revolved around the wines from Côtes du Rhône, of the Rhône wine region in France. For this project, I worked in a team to create three multi-sensory armchairs that represented three different wines (Côte Rôtie, Crozes Hermitage, and Condrieu). To make these armchairs multi-sensory, we reupholstered the chairs with fabrics that somewhat matched the feel the wine had on the pallet.

For example, one wine had a smooth feel to it, so for that chair we upholstered it with velvet.

We also used different mechanisms within the chairs that would trigger smells as a person sat down. The seat of one chair was a set of bellows, so as a person sat down they pressed down on the bellows which then pushed the scent of pine through some tubes and out of a gramophone horn. The scents that were used within the chairs complimented the smell and taste of the wines and therefore enhanced the experience people had when drinking each wine.

Credit: ‘Chair du Rhone’ – Collaborators: Jodie Newsum, Rosie Allen, Viola Zini

Any top tips?

Something I’ve been told almost constantly since I was a school is to never be afraid to fail, mainly because when you fail at something it leads you into this whole problem-solving cycle – where personally I tend to have my best ideas.

What’s next?

I honestly have no strong idea of what it is that I want to do with the rest of my life, but I’m keeping a very open mind and saying yes to pretty much any opportunity I’m offered. All I know is that I just want to have fun with whatever it is I end up doing.

Follow Jodie on Twitter

Find out more about the course Jodie studied:

BA (Hons) Interaction Design Arts

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