While some UCOL Whanganui design students have deferred the completion of their studies until next year, others have carried on through Covid-19 restrictions to produce work that will go on public show next week.
Third-year students in visual arts, fashion and design media courses are putting the final touches to graduate pieces that will feature in the DNA 20 exhibition, which opens in the Rutland St atrium on Friday, November 20.
Visual arts lecturers Lorraine Webb and Kathryn Wightman have supported their students to complete their work for the year and some managed to continue working at home during the lockdown stage of Covid restrictions.
Student Nicholas Toyne said the restrictions had been challenging.
"When we were able to come back after lockdown I thought about how I could keep working if the levels went up again," he said.
Toyne's work for the DNA 20 exhibition is a series of 3D printed self-portraits and screen-printed glass work that he says are responses to human interactions with technology.
Joana Horne's porcelain figures have human bodies with oversized heads based on emojis - the ideograms and smileys used in electronic messages and web pages.
The figurines are a wry interpretation of modern communications and Horne said she had fun bringing them to life.
Jasmine Brown's paintings represent death and dying although she said they are not intended to be maudlin.
"I was reading about people who had near-death experiences and people who had faced death and emerged from it unafraid of dying.
"In my paintings, I am examining how death is a transitional rather than a permanent state. Life forms change and re-emerge in different forms."
R J Ratu's acrylic and oil on board paintings are a series of human forms emerging from dark, gloomy landscapes.
"They were inspired by the lockdown restrictions and they are about the challenges of re-emerging and starting life again.
"I'm a mid-year intake student so coming to UCOL and starting this course was my emergence from lockdown."
Hannah Williams' large acrylic on canvas work is a patchwork of tiny paintings.
"Each one has the potential to be expanded into a bigger painting," she said.
"I've built up layers and used different combinations to see how they work alongside each other.
"It is an orchestra of thought if you like."
Fashion student Sophie Crawford had drawn inspiration from her Filipino culture and folklore heroine Maria Clara to inspire her collection which combines gold metallic crotchet bodices with hand-dyed natural fabrics.
"I really like Vivienne Westwood's designs and she inspires me along with the traditional Philippines culture and I love to crochet so I've brought all those things together," said Crawford.
"I also believe in reusing and upcycling things because I'm concerned about the environment and I like the challenge of using that in fashion."
Crawford was able to use lockdown time to craft her armour-like bodices and she has crocheted around cardboard rings to create a chainmail effect in some of her pieces.
Programme leader Stephanie West said it has been inspirational to see Crawford's works emerging.
"I have not seen a student who is so skilled at crochet before and I love the structural effects she is able to achieve.
"She has achieved so much and she just hasn't stopped."
Josh Taylor made the switch from visual arts to design just before lockdown and said he thought about deferring to next year but decided to push on.
"I'm just mocking up my video game design," he said.
"It is called Tower Defence and the aim is to protect these crystal towers from characters who will steel energy from them."
He has produced a design for an armoured wolf-like character whose aim is to attack the towers and his design for the game packaging and a poster which will be on show at the community arts centre next week.
Design tutors Andres Salinas and Debbie Hahn said they expect a busy class next year with returning students and enrolments for next year are filling up fast.
"It was tough for students this year and the ones who have completed the year have really done themselves proud," Salinas said.
The DNA 20 exhibitions will be showing at four locations from November 21 to 27. Students' work can be viewed at the Edith Gallery, 24 Taupo Quay, UCOL atrium and C Block, Whanganui Community Arts Centre, 19 Taupo Quay and NZ Glassworks, 2 Rutland St. Hours for all venues are 10am to 3pm on weekdays and 9am to 1pm on Saturday.