Old School Photo

OK, so you should be at a point where you know what the ‘Lost Coursework’ is, and how it’s related to Herbie. For those of us who are thick and have a memory worse than a sieve, I’ll give you a recap: ‘The Lost Coursework’ was one of the fundamental discoveries of my life which made me re-evaluate my life and career.

School Days

I’m in my late twenties now, I left school at 16, like everyone else. You see, I was a bit of an ‘all-rounder’ at school. I was always ‘kickin up dust’ with the homies (some which are still close all these years on), flexing with the females, whilst at the same time balancing it all off with always performing well in my studies. I was one of them ‘naturally clever’ little screamers who would get great marks with minimal effort. I just had ‘it’, whatever ‘it’ was. This was also true for Art. I had a knack for drawing, sketching, painting, caricatures blah blah blah. My Art teachers loved me. I was simply good at everything. I was always in the top ‘sets’ or ‘classes’ for all subjects and kicked everyone’s asses at everything. I was even selected to play for the school football team, even though I didn’t even put any effort in the trials.

What the fuck is ‘The Lost Coursework’?

‘You could have got all A grades if you tried harder’, my headteacher put it, as he passed me my exam results, which were a mixture of As, Bs and Cs. Yeah, I passed ’em all but my teachers expected me to do EVEN better. I got a grade A for my ‘GCSE Design and Technology – Graphics Design’ subject. I was chuffed to bits. The final submitted work consisted of 50% practical (physically building and creating stuff) and 50% coursework (30 sheets of A3 detailing the project report, completed over 9 months). This was back in 1998, and my teacher Mr. Chel (are you still alive? if so, get in touch!) returned my work to me after it had adorned the ‘Exhibition Hall’s’ walls at my school. It had been shown off as a masterpiece. (My first ‘gallery exhibition’ I might think).

GCSE Graphic Design – ‘The ‘Teach’

My graphics teacher back then, Usman Chel, or ‘Mr. Chel / Sir’ as we HAD to refer to him, was a jekyl and hyde kinda character with over-sized brown-tinted glasses frames that covered half his face which made him look like an astronaut in space. Mid-30s and I’m sure he was Indian, although we never really found out. He was a good teacher, but a shit graphic artist(!) Young family man taking on his teaching career. I gotta be thankful though, because I got a good grade with him but he didn’t half get the piss taken out of him about his knackered banged-out coughing spluttering little red peugeut car he used to bounce about in. This so-happened to have the last three letters in it’s reg-plate as ‘P A D’, which sounded like the word ‘fart’ in punjabi and so which was, obviously, used against the poor fella by the classes more notorious male members.

The Brief – ‘Occasions’ Catering Company

Everybody got allocated a different business industry and I got ‘Catering’. Hmm, not very exciting, but I had to ‘make’ it exciting. Choosing a name was easy, it seemed, I thought of ‘Occasions’ because caterers are used on such events. The brief was to design the corporate identity, branding, marketing material and show it in action. The research, design and development would all be documented in a 30-page A3-size report, which was to be submitted as the coursework.

For the practical part (50%), I had to build a replica of a company vehicle, the famous Ford Transit Van, which was to be built out of ‘styrofoam’, a cushiony kinda material which Chel just loved, for some unknown reason. Below is the coursework, all 30 sheets. Theyr’e a bit tatty and a bit rough around the edges, but this is the testament to my skill, aged 15 and a bit(!)

GCSE Grade A – A2 Size – Drawn by Hand

12 thoughts on “The ‘Lost Coursework’

  1. The good old days starting my career in teaching at edge end. I was strict and it did you lot no harm. Some of you were talented. Looking back, there were some good memories.

    1. Yo Mr. Chel! WOW, how are ya pal, can’t believe it’s you. Lol they were definately the good ol’ days, a lot going on these days. Get in touch!

  2. Herbie, What can i say??? Im going to get all emotional now…. You really are inspirational! Your work is fab and you are a great role model(and im saying all this without any LOLs)
    Keep it up Herbs xxx

  3. lmao, how can i forget that time he flipped when we ate his sweets, tooo funny and revas was a bit of a rebel 2, just saw him the other day, in fact, still at McDs!

  4. only if i knew herbs. do you remember when revas use to go in the back room and eat chel’s pack lunch (nit that the sarnies had any meat in them)! Also the time when he had a box of roses and all us lot ate the sweets and then put paper inside the wrappers with a little message, “i owe you”. Funny times man!

  5. Loved the article to bits but loved Mr Chel’s description and who could forget that number plate on his car PAD!

    1. lol just WHERE is Usman Chel nowadays billaz? the guy was a wicked teacher but he just got so much stick lol, that red peugeot is one of the fondest memories i have of the guy

  6. thanks Katana, yes this was for my graphics subject at school, i wish i still had all my art stuff, i can remember some pieces i did but which were ‘top of the class’ but god-knows where they are now

    ur bang on, without effort there is nothing (unless u win the lottery) but im so glad ive chosen a career path im passionate about, thanks for ur reply and ur blog looks great too :)

  7. I love it!

    So is this your first “Retrospective”? :D I love the details, right down to the font choice and outline. You deserve the mark you got- what a great “first” to still have access to. I wish I hadn’t painted over my first acrylic painting.

    I was one of those great-marks-no-effort kinda students too- and man, what a habit to break. Turns out in the real world we do, actually, have to put in the effort. <3 (which, clearly, you do now! love it)

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