5th August 2019

project 2019. 

project 2019.

This year I had the absolute pleasure of being involved in the Cygnus Horizons Project 2019, now before your mind runs wild, let me give you some background: Horizons is a yearly project which we run here at Cygnus, drawing on the local, young and creative talent in Milton Keynes – as a result Horizons gives students the opportunity to run with their own project, working with Cygnus to design, create and install their original idea.

Milton Keynes Hospital
Charity wall mural.

Back in March we went about setting this year’s brief, which involved a local charity of whom we’ve partnered with for the last six months, the Milton Keynes Hospital Charity. In the past Cygnus have been involved in various events to help raise money for this very special charity, some of which involved running through powder paint, taking on inflatable obstacles and cycling all the way from London to Paris, in a scorching heatwave. But we wanted to give more, we wanted to collaborate with a young creative to create something very personal to them.

Within the hospital itself is the charity’s offices, easily missed with no indication that they’re there. Outside is a wall space, which we thought would be perfect to be able to showcase all the good that they do, a space that is theirs and which will act as a signpost for visitors. This was the Horizons 2019 brief: to design a wall mural that represents the Milton Keynes Hospital Charity, gives awareness, spreads positivity and encourages people to help raise money for their cause.

I have to say that the students at Milton Keynes College entered some outstanding work, some brilliant ideas which all must have taken so much effort. But one student stood out for us, and her name was Sasha. I was stunned at the amount of research, thought and creativity that went into her ideas, she really understood how the space could be used and captured so many different aspects of the charity. What we loved the most was the sense of a journey her ideas took, creating a vibrant scene of past fundraising events, the results of this and the improvements on the hospital and also encouragement for people to help in the future. Brilliant.

We announced Sasha as our winner, and I began working with her to bring her ideas to life. Spending time together in the studio to nail illustration styles, chosen typefaces and colours, then running with this to create the entire piece. It was truly a collaborative process, our talented designer Maria and myself shared the design work, keeping both Sasha and the charity involved at every stage. It was wonderful to see it progress, see Sasha’s vision coming to life and also knowing that we’re producing something which will make a difference to the charity.

After weeks of creating, the wall mural was finalised, printed and fitted into the area. I, Sasha, Maria and a few others then went to see it. This being the first time we’ve seen it in person, at full size and in situ. It was amazing. The charities response was also so rewarding, letting Sasha know that they adored it and finally have a space to call their own. A very special moment.

As well as realising her original concept, Sasha also spent a week’s work experience with us here at Cygnus. Learning what we do, how we do it and absorbing the general atmosphere of a creative studio, she was a fast learner! At the end she was even teaching me new things.



Author: Megan Jones