Portalis Collaborator Interview – Raluca Popa

Raluca smiling at the camera

What influences did you draw on for this project?

For this project, I mostly drew on my personal experience in caves. I have also researched caves and the underground to better connect with this mysterious world.

What processes did you use in your work?

For this work, I experimented with different materials and textures from the caves and worked with software including Adobe Illustrator and InDesign. Firstly, we collected pictures and sketches from the City of Caves in Nottingham and then used them to create the colour palette for the exhibition. The identity of the exhibition was inspired by the images we took from the caves and by the artworks in the Hollow Earth exhibition.

Raluca drawing

Did you try new approaches for this exhibition that led to new discoveries?

The collaboration between the graphic design team and the other students working on this project helped us generate new ideas together. The trip into the underground world of the caves helped us better understand the theme of the exhibition. Collecting materials and pictures from there helped us generate more ideas in the early design stages.

What feelings or meanings do you imagine your work conveys?

I think the identity of the exhibition encapsulates the idea of mystery, the unknown and adventure. Just by holding the leporello I hope people can feel the texture of cave walls and can get a sense of the geology of caves.

the Portalis exhibition brochure next to a rock

How does your work for Portalis relate to your past work?

Working on Portalis required a good understanding of the design principles and knowledge of branding and identity design. The Portalis project is the most complex branding project I have worked on and in comparison to my past work, I can clearly see an improvement and development in my skills and knowledge.

Will this project influence some aspect of your future practice? If so, what and how?

Working on this project helped me understand how important collaboration is. The range of ideas that we, as a group, generated, was both quantitative and most importantly qualitative.

the Portalis exhibition brochures

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