Final year project
Synaesthesia - The Hidden Sense [Read more]
'Hear Me: Part II'
‘Hear Me: Part II’ are digitally embroidered samples inspired by Emma’s synaesthesia-led paintings. One type she experiences is chromesthesia, which is where she sees certain colours and shapes when listening to a particular sound. This is noticeably strong when she concentrates on the sound of the music as opposed to lyrics, therefore techno and house provide interesting visuals to paint.
Translucent fabric is purposely chosen to convey that the colours seen do not blind her vision – they are involuntary, present in front of the eyes when hearing a particular sound. Each sample represents a different song that Emma has painted.
Part of the ‘Hear Me’ series is this digital print. Scaling 3 meters high, this seamless digital print design is intended to translate Emma’s chromesthesia through a narrative of different songs. Each part of the print represents a different song, and the viewer is invited to listen to a mix of these songs whilst observing the print. The intention is to immerse the viewer into Emma’s own synaesthete lens and allow them to challenge the perceptions of reality. Emma’s print design explores the way she experiences the world as a synaesthete.
'Touch Me: Heavy or Light'
‘Touch Me: Heavy or Light’ series is a collection of jacquard experiments inspired by the concepts and theories of synaesthesia. The ideas of ‘joined sensations’ and ‘cross-sensory mapping’ by questioning one’s perception have influenced this interactive series.
In order to understand the world, we seek out patterns in our environment and a lot of this is done through the senses. This series looks at the senses of ‘touch’ and ‘see’ using jacquard as a medium to explore the interesting theory of the size-weight illusion.
This is where small objects appear heavier than a larger object when in fact, they’re the same mass. Colour also determines someone’s perception of which object is heavier. Dark colours make an object look smaller when in fact it will be heavier. Our perception of mass is confused through the colours and size of an object. Using dark colours for a small object and lighter colours for a larger object, Emma intends to contradict a person’s senses into making them believe one object is heavier than the other before actually touching it, through altering one’s perception using colour, material and 2D and 3D surfaces.
Which one is heavy? What do you think is the lightest?
‘Taste Me’ is part of the collection of interactive prototypes that explore a different sense. These jacquard samples explore taste and smell. Emma did extensive research studying scientific and psychological reports into how colour has an effect on someone’s perceived idea of what something will taste like – the mapping of colour on taste. Emma explored sweet, salty, sour, and bitter tastes as well as more specific tastes such as citrus flavour profiles.
These jacquard samples each translate a different taste. They are scented, with the intention to confuse or confirm one’s perception of the taste, when one can only assume this first through its colour. If you could taste it, what would each taste of?
'Touch Me: Hard or Soft'
‘Touch Me: Hard or Soft’ is a series questioning one’s perception of soft and hard tactile effects. Ceramics have been used as a medium to portray the technique of digitally embroidered fringing. Using the idea of something being ‘soft and fluid’ when parts are actually ‘hard’ to contradict the senses. The aim is that one will want to ‘stroke’ and run their hands through it. What defines a 'soft' and 'hard' textile material?
'Hear Me: Part II' Close up of Digital Embroidery Sample
'Antlers, Alex Scott' Digital Print
‘Antlers’ is a digital print created in collaboration with a music producer friend of Emma’s. This large-scale print invites the viewer to immerse themselves in the music of Alex Scott through Emma’s visualisation of the music.
'Glue, Bicep' Painting
A painting visualising the song Glue, by Bicep, through Emma's eyes.
Emma Hayward is a digital textiles student driven by sensory stimulating textile design and her belief that nourishing the mind and body through textiles will have a positive impression on a person.
‘Synaesthesia – The Hidden Sense’ is a material and colour-led exploration into how textiles can be used to create a sensorial experience. The aim is to raise awareness of the phenomenon of synaesthesia and how we, as humans, perceive reality by creating a fun and playful space which manipulates the senses to explore and question sensory impressions.
For the majority of people, the sensation is separated into the five senses – touch, taste, smell, vision and hearing. However, for a select few (Emma being included), the senses become merged leading to the phenomenon of synaesthesia. It occurs when a stimulus triggers one sense which leads to an involuntary experience in another. For example, some can ‘taste’ colour, ‘see' shapes when listening to music or ‘smell’ words.
The final exhibit is an installation of 2D and 3D textile prototypes that will question and play with the senses. Her artwork will encourage people to engage with their environment through sensory stimulation as well as allow people to see the world through Emma's own synaesthetic lens. It is about taking a second look and observing things from a new perspective. Patterns, shapes and colours take inspiration from her own form of synaesthesia.
Emma intends to pursue her passion in how textiles can be used to positively stimulate and engage with a person’s mind and body, and its uses as a tool to help improve mental wellbeing through interactivity. Continually trying to evoke an experience in her work – a feeling or a state of mind – by using textiles as a medium to interact or visually communicate with a person. Her strengths lie within colour, painting, and material exploration.
Her work is somewhere in between 2D and 3D, always concentrating on colour, materials, surfaces and patterns. Creating visual and sensory experiences, in the form of installations, objects, and wall art is the main focus. Personal, thought-provoking concepts are the key to all of Emma’s projects, with her previous project exploring how the natural landscape can be used to interpret emotions, inner struggles and imperfections of someone suffering from anxiety using the cracks and movement within.
Having strong extensive knowledge across multiple digital softwares including Wilcom for digital embroidery, ScotWeave for jacquard and Adobe Suite, Emma is highly innovative and adaptable, who is able to quickly grasp new techniques.
Final year project
Synaesthesia - The Hidden Sense
'20 Diploma in Professional Studies
'19 Work exhibited at Premiere Vision Paris
'20 print designs sold at Fusion CPH
'21 work chosen to be exhibited at LCB Depot, Leicester
Mainline Womenswear Intern - Paul Smith, London (July 2019 - December 2019)
For six months, Emma interned at Paul Smith. During her time there she developed invaluable skills including:
• Creating print placements, artworks for fabric developments, updating fashion sketches on Photoshop and Illustrator; CAD visualisations and creating repeat prints in Photoshop
• Mood boards and colour boards, updating design boards on InDesign
• Sourcing fabrics and trimmings for colour matching
• Designed print and embroidery designs for the soft accessories team, as well as assisting the knitwear and print departments.
Print Design Intern - Fusion CPH, Copenhagen (January 2020 - April 2020)
During her three months at Fusion CPH in Copenhagen, Emma learnt to become even more independent by living and immersing herself in a new country, which in turn improved her confidence and interpersonal skills. Working for Fusion CPH involved:
• Creating full-colour repeat separated digital print designs on Photoshop
• Drawing and painting
• Organising, coding, and overlocking fabrics ready for trade shows and meetings