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How Not To Prepare for Your Entrance Exams

CONGRATULATIONS!!!

One step closer to entering the college of your dreams.

The Pearl Academy gates swing open and you’re faced with a new world- a hotbed of creativity where great minds, perspectives and industries converge to create ground breaking work.

But, before you pass, you’re faced with a test. Surely by this point you have already spent several sleepless nights priming yourself with the tools and information necessary to overcome the final obstacle in your way to getting what you want: a future in design.

All the prescriptive manuals, guidelines, tips, tricks, hacks and how-tos must have been feverishly consulted by now. (We hope.) You’ve done well so far figuring out what you need to do in order to:

>Crack a College Entrance Exam
>Breeze through an interview like a maestro
>Bust out an immaculate portfolio that’s guaranteed to impress

There’s tons of “How To Get Into College” and “How to Crack the Entrance Exam” videos, articles and books out there for you to follow the roadmap to success. This isn’t exactly another one of those.

Instead, we’re going to quickly walk you through the things you really don’t want to do in order to seal the deal at the end of the day- just so you have all your bases covered. You know, going through all the things the traditional guide book won’t discuss.

Sometimes, when you’re so focused on getting everything right by the rule book, you forget to take into account all the not so right things that might slip you up.

Just like a banana peel lying on the sidewalk you just didn’t notice. Or maybe you did notice but stepped right on it, underestimating it as a potential threat because it was just a silly, harmless banana peel.

So let’s get to it.

Studying thoroughly for any test is pretty much the only real way to crack it. However, here are some potentially disastrous scenarios you really don’t want to find yourself in during prep mode.

1.You start studying a month. . a week. . a night before the exam. You’re cramming information into your brain last minute, quite confidently believing any of it going to stick.

2.You drink 15 cans of Red Bulls before tackling a mock paper thinking you’re going to be infused with magical, creative powers. Pablo Picasso may have created masterpieces in this way, but you’re not Picasso (Yet.)

3.Watching youtube videos about cats, blasting Ed Sheeran on repeat and simultaneously playing candy crush on your phone. Consider yourself the Master of Multitasking all you want, scientific research is certain that doing too many things at one time dramatically diminishes productivity.

4.Texting your crush all through study hour. Really, that coffee date can wait- after your exam.

5.Allowing stress and unrest to get the best of you, turning you into an unshowered, delirious, incoherent monster your parents want to disown.

We acknowledge that design schools are liberal, free thinking spaces where you’re allowed to challenge the status-quo. It might be tempting to want to break the rules while giving your test in order to showcase your creative brilliance. We strongly recommend that you resist the following approaches on the day of your exam:

1.Doodling passionately in the margins, across answers or even as answers in place of writing. No matter how thought provoking your sketches are, they run the risk of offending your examiner if you blatantly ignore instructions.

2.Listening to your carefully curated inspirational playlist put together for optimal performance on examination day. Okay, maybe you’re being polite with headphones and sure, music might help you focus, but this might just get you kicked out.

3.Peeping into your neighbors sheet to copy/compare/scoff at their work while they are taking the test.

4.Covering your test paper in glitter, spraying Chanel no. 5 on it and dotting all your i’s with stars to give it your personal, distinctive essence that will surely make an impact on your evaluator.

5.Taking a picture of your exam paper and uploading it to your instagram so your followers can see your witty responses OR taking selfies of yourself in the exam hall to show off your #OOTE (Outfit of the Exam) on #JudgementDay.

Your personal interview is where you’re scanned and judged as a potential fit for Pearl on the basis of your presentation, behaviour and responses. There are numerous things you could do during your interview we’re convinced you shouldn’t do, but we’re going to keep this list short and sweet.

1.You show up wearing a really, really over the top outfit. Forget form and function, you’re here to make a statement that makes Lady Gaga pale in comparison. Just remember there’s a fine line between looking artsy/eccentric and plain, borderline insane. Pearl is also a school of business, mind you.

2.You show up 36 minutes late and brush it off nonchalantly, because it’s fashionable.

3.Your session degenerates into an angry, screaming match with your Interviewer because your political/religious/intellectual/dietary views fail to align.

4.You keep checking your facebook notifications through the session. You just posted a really great picture of your coffee, duh.

5.Fabricate fantastic stories about your past to appear more exciting or experienced, ultimately putting your own foot in your mouth because you forgot your own false facts mid-story.

The portfolio is your golden ticket to design school! This is where you allow your creativity to shine to its greatest potential, dazzling the examiner into granting you well-deserved access to Pearl Academy- where you obviously belong. So let’s make sure you don’t do the following things that will most probably mess up your chances of being accepted.

1.You decide to present an encyclopedia of work. We get that you consider every single piece of your life’s work as crucial and that you dedicated your life entirely to art, but we really don’t need to see that amazing, perfect bowl of fruit you painted as four year old.

2.You present your masterpiece and only your masterpiece. Because this is the only piece of art you’ve created that is relevant and clearly revolutionary.

3.You slip a couple of pieces into your portfolio that aren’t your original work to come off as more skilled. Really, the mona lisa?!? Examiners are much smarter than you think.

4.You decide to reject all standard requirements for putting the Portfolio together and present your portfolio with a whole new and improved model using 3D printing, sound effects and puppetry.

You forgot that a portfolio is required altogether. Oops. Maybe you need to stop reading this and fix that- quick.

We wish you all the very best in your Entrance Exam this Saturday, future Creators of Pearl Academy!

See you on the other side.

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A Spotlight on Dinesh Kumar


Dinesh Kumar’s roots run deep. They travel back into the place of his birth and childhood, down into a lush coastal state tucked away in South-East India- the mystical lands of Karnataka. Etymology suggests that the name Karnataka roughly translates to “Elevated land.” Sprawled across gorgeous, rolling plateaus resplendent with waterfalls and greenery, Karnataka contains exciting history and a rich cultural legacy Dinesh tapped into while creating his wearable art installations that made a splash at Pearl Academy. His creation found its way as a deserving feature in the college’s latest advertising campaign and also won accolades at the World of Wearable Art in New Zealand!

A post-graduate student of Fashion Design, Dinesh’s creativity uses the body and clothing as its primary outlet for expression. For this particular piece, proudly featured in Pearl’s most recent advertising campaign featuring a series of striking student body work, Dinesh drew inspiration from architecture and patterns unique to the temples of his homeland.

“These temples are masterpieces of Dravidian architecture, testimony to the high levels of art that existed in bygone eras,” Dinesh says. “Their basic structural elements, especially the intricately carved gateways and towers, have completely informed my work.” Temples crafted under the distinctive south Indian style are chiefly characterized by its gopuram (tower) that consists of progressive, smaller stories of pavilions. They are square, pyramidal in shape, littered with porches (mandapams) and pillared halls, (chawadis) all of which Dinesh has painstakingly replicated through colourful paper and fabrics.

Equally important to structural intricacy is the technicolour feast that is served. “The psychedelic beauty of these temples is visually captivating. It commands attention.” Dinesh explains as a matter of fact. The rainbow interplay of colour displayed by Dinesh’s project casts a spell-binding effect on viewers. It holds sway over one’s gaze and imprints consciousness with recursive, hyperreal patterns inducing a state of visual trance.
“These temples are sacred places, home to ritual and divinity that defines Hindu spirituality. It physically represents transcendence.” Clearly, his art work merges these themes of divinity and transcendence with the site of the human body- literally ‘elevating’ the ordinary human form and transforming it into a site of sacrality.

“I have always been connected and in tune with Nature.” Dinesh says, touching upon his childhood and love for horticulture. “I was raised on farmlands and took great pleasure in planting seeds to see flowers, fruit and plants grow. Nature soothes my senses and is my muse. She shows me how to blend colours together and achieve effortless flow in form.” Things that appear seemingly insignificant or plain to others have the power to ignite Dinesh’s imagination in dramatic ways. “Broken glass. Tiny schools of fish. River stones. The shells of beetles. Nature offers me inspiration for visuals. I translate everything that impacts me into my design work.”

While speaking to Dinesh, it is quickly discovered that he perceives his environment with a mild synesthesia- not uncommon for those with artistic sensibilities. The world is a magical place, lavish with flowing lines, textures and fractals, interacting in infinite ways. It is bursting with life, never dull or monotonous. “I push myself to think in novel ways to design, cut and colour,” says Dinesh. “I like to adorn the body, create vivid, wildly innovative silhouettes. Pearl has allowed me to push the boundaries in thinking what it means to be a fashion designer. Fashion doesn’t always have to functional, we forget that fashion can be art, just for the sake of art. I am deeply thankful to be given the freedom and opportunity to explore the, dazzling and experimental facets of the Industry while keeping myself firmly grounded in proven technique and theory.”

Students like Dinesh Kumar form the lifeblood of Pearl Academy. We take pride in helping them focus their innate gifts and provide their passion with the structure, industry skills, guidance and resources necessary to make an impact in the world. They do so in real and practical ways without having to compromise their vision and authentic voice.

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A Spotlight on Mayank Singh

A Spotlight on Mayank Singh

“Creative inspiration can strike me anywhere, anytime. I could be walking down local marketplaces or sitting in my bedroom listening to the radio. It can come through the sight of rain or trees, strangers and books, stashed away like a jewel waiting for me to grab it, hidden inside moments of silence. I can’t predict the next time I’m struck by a great idea or visual to expand on.” contemplates Mayank Singh, a first year student of Interior and Spatial Design at Pearl Academy. Though academically rooted in the art and practice of designing and constructing buildings, Mayank delights in exploring the wellspring of options his foundation year at the Academy offers him. “We don’t limit our study to one particular field. We’re encouraged to take an interdisciplinary route towards advancing our skills at Pearl,” he says, clearly excited. Mayank’s imagination, free from any bridle, travels in unusual directions and is informed by everyday life, his private world, his passions and scholarly interests: nature, humans, everyday objects and world cultures.

Young, talented and blessed with a voracious curiosity about the world, he refuses to stay complacent within the boundaries of his own culture. “I haven’t had the luxury to travel as much as I would like to. There are beautiful, fascinating places out there I wish to visit. France, Wales, Netherlands and Japan to start with.” He lingers on his love for France, notably the bold wave of modernity that swept over the French Riviera during the 20’s and 30’s. This brought simplicity and clean lines which lay in stark, yet refreshing contrast to traditional design aesthetic Mayank regards with equal reverence- such as baroque and art deco. “I respect complexity as it is usually born out of great planning and intelligence. There is nothing more awe inspiring than the monumental dimensions the gothic churches in Paris such as the Notre Dame have” He chuckles, asking if I had seen the recent adaptation of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast film. “I love regalia. Some people shy away from the ornate and decadent because they fear excess. I embrace it..”

Making a bold statement isn’t something Mayank shies away from. His flamboyant, 6X6 canvas painting that caught everyone’s attention on campus with its girth and vibrant composition is an example of this tendency. It came as no surprise when it was featured on Pearl’s newest advertising campaign, hinged on student produced art.

The bold, nonchalant lines that bring this painting to life in a predominantly impressionist style bears comparison to the paintings of Le Corbusier, the visionary mastermind who inspires Mayank’s architecturally inclined mind. A portrait of a lady, left deliberately faceless against a sunny backdrop, flaunts an ornate up-do that is reminiscent of hairstyles worn in 18th century Europe- especially France and its court of Versailles. During this era, ornamentation of the hair was a reflection of affluence and flourishing times. Women weren’t afraid to project themselves vibrantly and did so with glamour and confidence. Men too, did not shy away from such vanity and decked themselves with equal pride.“This painting is a celebration and encouragement of feminine expression in a culture that is mostly oppressive towards women,” says Mayank, “The lady doesn’t have a face because she is archetypical. She represents qualities that are commonly only associated with the feminine spirit-” held paramount at Pearl Academy – creativity, beauty, vitality and colour.

Stepping into his role as an artist was not always on the cards for Mayank, who grew up aspiring to become a professional soccer player during his school days. Like the majority of his male peers, he was encouraged to fuel his athleticism and dedicate himself to the study of hard sciences- physics, chemistry and mathematics- all of which geared him towards a future career in engineering. However, Mayank decided to reject this conventionally “masculine” path, despite all its promises of security. Why? “Because you have only one life to live. I don’t want to be a slave to money and the tried and tested path. There are other parts of me that I want to explore, real interests I want to nurture.” And in deciding this, Mayank found himself enrolled as a proud student at Pearl, fearlessly committing himself to the path of an artist and coming face to face with his inner Creator.

Students like Mayank Singh form the lifeblood of Pearl Academy. We take pride in helping them focus their innate gifts and provide their passion with the structure, industry skills, guidance and resources necessary to make an impact in the world. They do so in real and practical ways without having to compromise their vision and authentic voice.

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Pearl Academy launched Canvass – The Incubation Cell

Pearl Academy launched Canvass – The Incubation Cell

With an aim to provide a platform and encourage entrepreneurship amongst alumni and students, Pearl Academy launched ‘Canvass’- the Incubation Cell at its Noida campus. The focus of this initiative is on the three core areas of providing Infrastructure, Mentoring and Investment, to the budding entrepreneurs.
This platform will provide students and alumni an opportunity to nurture their business ideas and bring them to fruition. Shri Pankaj Singh, MLA & General Secretary BJP, Uttar Pradesh inaugurated the incubation cell amongst presence from students, faculty and industry representatives.

To encourage the spirit of entrepreneurship amongst students, Pearl Academy hosted two panel discussions on topics such as ‘Bridging the gap between academic & startup requirements, better startup culture & responsible entrepreneurship’ and ‘Changing length & breadth of Indian economy and entrepreneurship as a new game’, with industry experts from Sheroes, ispirit,Innov8 as well as representatives from StartUpIndia. The discussions touched upon various critical aspects of nurturing and building up a startup enterprise. The knowledge sharing sessions were well received by budding entrepreneurs.

Commenting on the launch of this initiative Nandita Abraham, CEO Pearl Academy said “With the constant growth of design industry in India, more and more young designers are turning entrepreneurs. As educators, our role has also assumed a bigger responsibility by not just believing in their bold ideas, but also to take a step ahead and provide support to fuel our students’ growth as entrepreneurs. I am sure that this initiative will provide critical support and help to our young budding entrepreneurs to transform their innovative and ingenious ideas into a reality.

Sharing his thoughts Shri Pankaj Singh MLA & General Secretary BJP, Uttar Pradesh said, “India being a young nation needs more and more initiatives that encourage youth to become self-reliant. The inauguration of the ‘Canvass – Incubation Cell’ is a step in right direction by Pearl Academy. I congratulate them for having a vision to empower the young creative minds that will go a long way in supporting and realizing the dream of StartUpIndia.

The dedicated 625 sq. ft. facility will provide fully equipped work stations along with wi-fi, meeting rooms, storage space for resources and access to facilities such as laboratory and library. Apart from providing this vital infrastructure, Pearl Academy will also provide mentoring to its alumni through workshops, online modules by domain experts and strategic networking with investors to make these ideas – a business reality. The center is also designed to provide funding assistance to budding entrepreneurs through interactions with angel investors, seed funders etc.

At Pearl Academy, our students are at the center of everything we do and Canvass is yet another initiative to nurture the bold ideas of our students and see them becoming a reality!

Know more about Canvass.

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Careers in Journalism & Mass Media

Meha Jayaswal is Area Head for School of Media & Journalism at Pearl Academy.

The world of news has changed in the digital era. Today “speed with accuracy” is the journalist’s major challenge and that is the thin line that would separate professional journalists with social media enthusiasts.

How do you think ‘journalism’ has changed in the digital age? What does it mean for aspiring journalists?

Today, information is flowing at lightning speed and hits us instantly. This is the power of the Digital Age. In such a scenario, the real challenge is to transform volley of information into news so that it remains relevant for a larger group than the target audience, which was easily defined by traditional newspapers and TV news channels. Social media has created ripples in news creation, news management and news dissemination. The Digital Age has entirely changed the way we consume news today. News is being consumed in shorter capsules instantly on our personal devices rather than at leisure with a cup of tea through a newspaper or on television. The advent of new media such as news apps have further brought in a revolutionary change in how a journalist needs to write and report a story befitting consumption on these mediums. Today’s fast-growing digital companies may become the media behemoths of tomorrow. Therefore, it is inevitable that journalism and mass media colleges bring their curriculum up to speed to ensure that the students learn what the industry requires them to be proficient in. Relevant knowledge of technology with traditional skillsets – language, writing, reporting, editing, analysis, layouts and camera skills have become a few essentials that the students need to be equipped with.

Is there a fusion of print, electronic and social media? How can institutes prepare students to be multi-skilled?
Newsrooms are integrating and today journalists are expected to write from 12 word tweet to 1200 word long format stories, and also report on television. At the same time, it is very important for a broadcast journalist to be able to produce 15-second for snapchat, Instagram and also competent to produce well researched documentaries for main stream television. Hence, it is important for students to learn how to adapt their story for different mediums which will reach out to different kinds of audiences. Therefore, the curriculum should be able to do an intelligent convergence of the skills required for all mediums and also train them to write for different readership / viewership profiles. For example, the millennials may consume a story through a photo blog than with a long format story while the business community might want to read detailed articles analyzing a certain economic policy. This is where the role of a media school becomes important so as to prepare students to adapt themselves to varying media formats.

What are some of the new careers that have emerged in the age of digital journalism?
The digital age has brought in a gamut of opportunities for the millennials. Whether it is being a blogger, content curator, social listener + content writer, the avenues have grown. Bloggers, in fact, have emerged as careers with high earning potential, in a few cases, more than their traditional counterparts and have a huge fan following too!

What things should a student look for in an institute before joining the course?
First, the institute’s curriculum and pedagogy should be based on the industry demands because that is where they will eventually work. A more experiential and practical, hands-on training, backed by a strong academic curriculum is essential. I feel that when students are taught by the industry experts themselves, they learn the best. And therefore, the college should ensure that the students get to interact with and get mentored by prolific writers, industry stalwarts and become the change makers in media industry.

Know more about Journalism & Mass Media Course.

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Mythology meets Fashion at #PearlPortfolio

Be it in the form of bestseller titles or television series, Hindu mythology and culture is creating waves around the world. But, certainly, there can’t be a better way to depict these elements than through the medium of fashion. #PearlPortfolio saw these elements in full bloom and glory with two very different, yet catchy themes designed by the graduating batch’s designers.

One show was themed around goddess Kali and enthused from the deity’s spirit of fighting evil and winning over the negative forces. ‘Kali Yantra’ was the inspiration behind the designs’; a yantra is a geometric symbol existing in the inner world as well as a subject to be internalised with human consciousness, thus showing the prowess of goddess Kali. Applying the concentric triangles and lotus petal shapes in the silhouettes, the final designs represented a powerful collection echoing off the woman warrior’s fierce autonomy. The designs were infused with LEDs to showcase the ray of hope that comes after destruction – depicting how Kali’s destructive nature is associated with the revival of good after the destruction of evil.

Another graduating designer brought forward her creativity inspired by the ‘mela’ – a Hindu fair or festival. Hindu melas are usually about large gatherings, which give the feel of freedom, excitement and playfulness to an individual. Melas are perceived to be happy occasions where one rejoices in life and forgets about misery and sorrow. This collection was all about positivity and showcased colourful palettes that resonated with the exuberance created by the Indian melas.

On the last day of AIFW17, these budding designers came forward with themes that brought the mythological and cultural values to life in the form of garments at #PearlPortfolio. The collection was well received by the audience as it revived the classical aesthetics and synergised traditional patterns

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Catch the glimpses of Pearl Utsav, our Annual College Fest

Our annual college fest, Pearl Utsav made waves with more than 2500 college students from across the city coming together for a memorable day. The energies were sky rocketing with many fashion shows, music competition and dance competitions. Artists like Sukhe and DJ Zaeden got the buzzing with just the right music

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Being wired for the future – Conference on Digital Marketing at Arvind Limited

Being wired for the future – Conference on Digital Marketing at Arvind Limited

School of Creative Business students attended a conference on ‘Digital Marketing and Omni-channel Experience’ by the winner of Asia’s top 25 Marketing Professional for 2016 by Asia Retail Congress, Rahul Tripuraneni who heads Marketing @ Arvind Internet Ltd in Bengaluru. On one hand, these students who were on their study trip to Bengaluru got hands-on learning experience on the production process by visiting various factories, on the other hand, this session by Rahul helped them understand the final stage of Marketing & promotion through newer channels.

Two alumuni of Pearl Academy namely Mr Sudhanshu Jain, graphic designer at Alma Mater and Hiya Madhu, Assistant Marketing Manager at Arvind Fashion Brands Ltd. shared their own journeys from being college to now being thorough professionals. An interactive Q&A concluded the successful session.

Before the speakers could bid curious students a farewell, they were greeted with token of love and appreciation by Dr. Poonam Kumar, Ms. Ritu Jain and Mr. Bhaskar Das on behalf of Pearl Academy.
Students Insights:

Radhika Gupta:
Knowledgable and helpful as it guided us through the future and current prospects of the digital world.

Antalya Varma:
It was extremely insightful and helped in putting everything in perspective.

Genjal Jain:
It gave us new insights in digital marketing.

Keerti Bansal:
Attending the conference was a great learning experience

Wamika Chachra:
It was an enlightening and knowledgable session. Mr Tripurnaneni’s session along with the Q&A round gave me a detailed understanding about how digital marketing works and the skills required to be a part of such teams.

Kritika Goel:
Being a digital marketing enthusiast, I was able to gather a lot of information about the problems that creep in, the industry environment and the real world scenario while one works for digital market.

Kushagra:
The session on digital marketing gave an insight into how digital marketing actually works with practical examples. The questions asked were rightfully answered and all doubts were cleared. It also made us realise the importance of DM and how it is the next big game of the industry and that we should make all attempts to learn to be digital marketers.

Roshni Anoop:
Talking to Hiya was really helpful and informative. It gave us an idea about the digital world and the career oppotunities in digital marketing.

Know more about School of Creative Business HERE

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Pearl Academy’s budding designers turn Day 5 of the AIFW17 into a runaway success

Pearl Academy’s budding designers turn Day 5 of the AIFW17 into a runaway success

This year’s Amazon India Fashion Week, India’s most sought-after fashion platform, saw young designers take the centerstage with their skills and knowledge. Pearl Academy’s annual property #PearlPortfolio yet again became a platform to give young students an eclectic vision of the future. A one-of-its-kind space, #PearlPortfolio witnessed some of the finest creations by budding fashionistas and fashion connoisseurs, 350 designers to be precise. Young talent from School of Fashion, Styling and Textiles came together to gain an industry-level experience and produce industry-challenging designs that earned them recognition from leaders and legends on the concluding day of the fashion week.

With innovative ideas like ‘6 Dots’ – a collection prepared specially for the visually impaired with braille tags and ‘Restoration’ – a collection inspired by the Delhi’s monuments and heritage buildings, the participating designers showcased a blend of inspirational and path breaking design hues. The event also saw photography projects from greenhorns, which reflected their inspiration and stimulus. A separate section dedicated to unique themes and issues such as the ecological footprint, DIY hand knit, etc. received appreciation from the jury, parents and visitors alike.

Prominent Fashion Design Council of India faces like Rimzim Dadu, Nitin Bal Chauhan, Nida Mahmood, Priyanka Modi, Divyam Mehta and Rahul Mishra were among the few who experienced the vibrancy and energy brought forth by these young designers.

Industry stalwarts congratulated this talented bunch of designers, photographers and forward thinkers for putting together a spectacular show and making Pearl Academy and FDCI’s #PearlPortfolio 2017 a stellar success.

Check out the work HERE

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