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Norwich University of the Arts hosts the largest Big Book Crit in the UK

Nearly 100 students receive first hand feedback on their work from 39 industry professionals from across the creative sectors.

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The Big Book Crit is a portfolio review with a difference. It’s a little like speed dating but for industry feedback and career advice. Students bring a collection of their current work and are given about fifteen minutes to chat through their progress with an experienced industry professional. After each session the students switch seats and discuss their work with a different guest.

The huge advantage of this format is that students gain honest, constructive responses to their work from a range of sectors and perspectives. Advice can address anything from technical adjustments and inspiration for new creative direction to the layout and presentation of portfolios. All of the 95 students that attended had the opportunity to receive advice and feedback from multiple professionals during the event. 

Big book crit 2024

The 39 industry attendees included creative directors, design leads, photographers and animators, representing sectors like advertising, web development, communications, film production, photography and fashion.

Norwich boasts a dynamic and flourishing creative community, and the Big Book Crit is a wonderful opportunity for creative businesses and practitioners to come together and share ideas. It can also be an invaluable introduction into this community for current students and recent graduates, some of which will gain connections that could form the beginnings of their own careers. Previous attendees have gone on to secure internships and employment from contacts made at the Book Crit.

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BA (Hons) Illustration student Indianna Williams commented on the event:

‘I thought the Big Book Crit was an insightful experience giving me the opportunity to talk about my practice and how to present the work in my portfolio. I spoke to a range of industry professionals, giving me guidance to entering the industry. Some of these were Alex Jeffery from Creative Nation and Michelle WIlliams from Creativity Unbound. They gave me some great advice to improve my portfolio for use in the future, and how to present myself in future interviews. Overall, I left the Big Book Crit very satisfied and I’m looking forward to improving my pitch.’

The Big Book Crit is hosted by Norwich University of the Arts in collaboration with DMA Talent. Of the six locations in which the Big Book Crit is held in the UK, London, Norwich, Bristol, Edinburgh, Leeds and Manchester, Norwich is the largest in terms of students and professionals attending.

A huge thanks to all the industry guests who contributed their time and knowledge, without which the event would not be possible. Full list of those who attended below:

  • Up There Everywhere
  • Ark
  • Naked Marketing
  • Creativity Unbound
  • Borne
  • Krow
  • Spring
  • Dialogue
  • Which?
  • Indevelopment Studio
  • The Mission Group
  • Studio Blake
  • Overflow Hidden
  • Creative Nation
  • Meantime Media
  • Production Bureau
  • Lambda Films
  • Blakely Clothing
  • Steve Wright (Photographer)
  • Tim Platt (Photographer)
  • Mike Harrington (Photographer)
  • Danny Bird (Photographer)
  • Marcus Codringron Fernandez (Creative Consultant)

DMA Talent are part of the Data & Marketing Association, Europe’s biggest community of data-driven marketers, and they help students tap into a wide variety of creative industries, highlighting creativity, marketing, technology and innovation.

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