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Male anorexia highlighted by Teesside Graphic Design graduate

09 August 2001 @TeessideUni


The eating disorder of anorexia has sometimes been viewed as one that affects women rather than men. However, a survey from the Eating Disorders Association (EDA) in 2000 revealed that 10 per cent of people with eating disorders were in fact, men. University of Teesside BA (Hons) Graphic Design graduate Paul Clay highlighted the problem of male anorexia in his final year project.

Paul, 22, from Bishop Auckland, designed a fictional company entitled ‘Escape’, to raise awareness of the issue. He consulted the EDA while planning his project, which consists of a corporate identity, a series of promotional billboards, a magazine article and three double-page spreads.

Paul said: “I first came across the issue when I was researching my final year dissertation on images of masculinity in advertising and magazine fashion photography. Previously I wasn’t aware of the existence of male anorexia; I hadn’t given it much thought. My friends on the course weren’t aware of it either. From a design point of view this is a largely untapped area.

“Although the EDA statistics say that 10 per cent of men suffer from eating disorders, the real figures may be much higher, as men may be reluctant to admit they have this illness. My project shows that men have someone to talk to about this, that they’re not alone.”

Paul came to the Middlesbrough-based University with three ‘A’ levels in Graphic Design, English Literature and Painting and Drawing from Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form in Darlington. He said: “The Graphic Design degree was really good, interesting and challenging. You could work with typographics, acetates, photography, and negotiate your own projects.”

For more information on the BA (Hons) degree in Graphic Design at the University of Teesside call 01642 384019, or check the University of Teesside’s web site at