Thomas Davenport, First Class Honours in Music Technology
Why did you choose the course?
I chose Music Tech because it was the perfect catalyst for my creativity and technological expertise. I was enthusiastic about making music but my lack of theory training may have left me behind on a traditional Music course. Music Technology gave me the freedom to explore my musical side in addition to the more technical aspects that come along with digital media. Keele University was my local university but it was the serenity of the campus that attracted me. For me It’s important to work and study in a place where you can relax and find composure. Broadly speaking the course involved music production, creative sound design and audio-visual composition. I didn’t expect to gain such an insight and skill-set within other aspects of digital media. The audio-visual work in-particular was a great eye-opener for me in terms of manipulating both audio and video in unique ways. It was very much about knowing the rules and then breaking them to construct media in an artistic format. In addition to that I was given the opportunity to use photography and videography in my projects which ultimately led to building up the media skills I use today.
What did you gain from the course?
The course helped my career by introducing me to different forms of creative media. Before I started at Keele I knew I wanted to do something creative but I didn’t have a specific idea of how I was going to do that or what it was going to look like. Furthermore, it’s hard to gauge your future without going out there and trying things out. Having access to top of the range facilities, equipment and software suites is crucial for getting that hands-on approach to learning. Music Technology taught me how to use sound in creative ways, but most importantly the aspect of reflecting that sound with image or video and vice versa. Star Wars Director George Lucas once said that “sound and music are 50% of the entertainment in a movie”. I think this can be dialled to any level of media production, including the field that I work in today.
Did Keele offer the wider range of support you expected or need?
The support from Keele University was diverse. 24 hour access to the music studios and library meant I always had somewhere to go and I could study at my own pace. When I needed guidance the teaching and support staff on my course were always willing to help, from the lecturers, to the studio technicians, to the reception. All of those people were available for a chat in the day and were only an email away.
I was surprised by the support in my chosen elective modules. My media electives gave me access to the media facilities and even some additional sessions to develop my skills. For example, even though I was a Music Tech student I still had access to additional software tutorials and the lecturers in the department treated me like a full-time Media student. Music Technology at Keele is the ideal course for someone who wants to try something more experimental with their interests in the field.
Where do you currently work?
I now work in Media Production. My self-founded business TPD Digital offers a range of services with a specialisation in instructional and promotional content. Progressing my career means building up my business to be the best Media Production service out there. But most importantly it’s about those experiences along the way, meeting new people, working with great clients and taking my service around the world. Working within Keele’s Smart Innovation Hub was a no-brainer for me. I loved studying at Keele. To be able to come back there as a business owner and reflect on where my journey first started is really something else. The facilities are current and sleek, they are the perfect workspace for a modern business. Most importantly for me however, is the opportunity to work alongside other achieving businesses and aspiring students. Already in the short time I have been at the Smark Innovation Hub, I’ve been able to network and take advantage of the available business support. I can’t wait to see what comes next.