Sunday 22 May 2016

OUGD603 Extended Practice Module Evaluation

Throughout this year I have changed as a designer in ways I did not expect. Part of my aim for the year was to stretch and test the way that I work, in terms of style and form. In second year I came to terms with what I loved to create and knowing this, this year has been a test of those limits, finding ways to enjoy tackling briefs I would not expect to. For example, I have made use of fonts and typography to a much greater extent. My work in hand lettering has given me a route into understanding the somewhat more technical side of typography and as a result I have been able to execute much more clean cut and decisive designs. 
This has been encouraged by my multiple collaborations this year. Through each collaboration, I have learnt about a new facet of design. A great example of this is the animation collaboration with Billie. I not only really got to grips with After Effects but also started to work on custom coded expressions, something I was completely unaware of until Billie introduced them to me. 
Before the collaborations I took part in this year, my design process was already very much about dialogue and discussion. This has increased through the collaborations and affirmed the fact that I want to work in a collaborative environment, whatever that eventually entails.
My external engagement through the PPP module has definitely fed into the approach I have taken to my Extended Practice Briefs. As I have started to figure out my first forays into the professional world of Graphic Design my briefs have molded to what could be most useful to me in the future. A specific example of this would be my work with the SU and how organising and coordinating full live campaigns has been an incredibly useful trial of my abilities. 
A brief that I am particularly happy with would be the branding work Izzy and myself did for Feminist Archives Feminist Futures.  Even now, a considerable time after the project was completed, I like the work. The mini logo mark is so flexible in its applications and looks great in the soft pattern we made for FAFF. The colour combinations are really strong, especially the kohl grey version for grey-scale use.  More than anything they were great clients to work with. The same can be said for all the live briefs I have engaged with this year. Everyone I have worked with and for, have been ready to collaborate and talk, this has allowed me to have a certain amount of creative freedom and create work that not only the client is happy with but I am too. Making it all useful in terms of my portfolio and future career.  
Overall, I am pleasantly surprised by the direction my work has taken this year. The outcomes I have created are often not what I expected of my self but something slightly different and outside what I would term my comfort zone.

Friday 20 May 2016

OUGD603 Extended Practice Brief 01 Students' Union Work Evaluation

Throughout the year my work with the Students' Union has been both very stressful and very rewarding. Each brief has been an exercise in listening to clients, really closely and intently, to truly understand what they want from each design. As someone who actively uses discussion as part of her design process the meetings with the entire Su were incredibly useful during each brief and the open, nature of the SU has allowed a true analysis of each brief from a number of perspectives. A particular example of this would be the elections campaign. We were given the theme. In any other situation this would make me very uncomfortable but the time we had to discuss the theme and what people were envisioning meant that I was able to run with the theme in a way that I was comfortable with. 
In many ways the SU have been more like collaborators than clients, because of their readiness to experiment. This has been very useful during a formative time in my practice.
Because a number of the briefs involved events or similar ways of recording success. It is easy to say that the designs I created for Freshers and Elections were really successful. We had the highest attendance yet for the Freshers Fair and every role in the SU was filled during the elections campaign, Something that hasn't happened for many years. 
There are of course aspects of each brief that, in retrospect I feel I could have done better; such as the complexity of the folds of the Freshers Guide and the branding of subsequent Elections events.  However, this was both the fault of me and the SU. Although it is great that my relationship with the SU was so casual it also meant that briefs simply came in conversation format, rather than a clear outline of everything that they needed. Although the conversations were and are great for getting the tone of voice of a project, the clear cut outlines are sometimes side stepped.
Despite this, I have learned so much through this brief about commercial print. My continued conversations with Pressision Print have been formative in my knowledge of what is possible and how it is achieved. For example the folding technology that has recently become available and was used on the events flyers I designed for Freshers is great to know about and I am sure will come in handy later in my career. So, overall, I am very proud of the work that I have done for the SU and incredibly thankful that I got to do it.

Thursday 19 May 2016

OUGD603 Extended Practice Brief 03 Botanical Collaboration Final Images and Evaluation

I visited Village Book Store to get some photograph of our Botany book in its intended habitat.


This brief took a long time to come to fruition, the time that we spent figuring out how the illustrations and the type would interact has, however, been time well spent.  This is the main strength of the design. The subtle and not over worked (a breakthrough for me) way in which the illustrations use the negative space of the letters (not growing around them) is a defining aspect of the overall tone of voice of the publication. It speaks of both a subtle beauty (in the plants) and a certain truth and practicality; this way the plants are represented truthfully, essential to botany. In practice this was achieved through really good communication between Jess and myself. We had long discussions about the type of look we wanted to create and starting by crating a Mood board on pinterest was a formative part of this. Most of all this collaboration really respected the roles that each of us played in the creation of the final design; we both offered critique in the execution of our separate jobs but in a gentle and generally polite way that was conducive of good results for both of us.
Opting for hobs to print and bind the finished product was a good overall choice. However, I do have my reservations about how pristine the finished object is. Small details such as slightly crushed corners and a tiny tear along the spine would be something that I would re-do if I had been binding the book. However, the stock that they had for the job is undoubtedly better than anything I could have printed on. The silk finish in a gentle off white fits exactly with the market placement that Jess and I were aiming for (high end magazine/book for young professionals). It also means that the stock registers little to no finger prints, perfect when it also should function as an identifying book, which you would need to return to.
This positioning of the publication is also the reason we didn't include any extra fluff that might be present in a full magazine. For example, we considered creating facing pages with colour swatches from the illustrations and adding fluff about the plants. However, because we wanted the book to be about botany we decided again it. It needs to be true to practicality as well as being beautiful.

OUGD603, Extended Practice Changes in Briefs Rationale

Aims: try to learn animation, improve lettering, collaborate more, do what makes you happy.

10- Archer Animated Quotes (collaboration with Billie)
Brief- create a series of animated quotes that celebrate and promote the program archer. These animations would hypothetically be used to advertise the fact that archer will be coming to Netflix.

Background considerations-
  • Choose quotes that are accessible to audiences new to the program.
  • Consider the sound that will be atop the animations and how the animation and visual can match the syntax and tone of voice of the speaker.
  • What are the selling points of the program and how can you communicate them quickly and concisely.

Mandatory requirements-
  • Use the brief to help learn Adobe after effects.
  • Consider the Netflix existing branding.

  • A selection of animations of the quotes chosen
  • Record of development on your design Practice Blog.

8- Letters By Louise Logo Design.

Brief: Create a lettered logo design for Louise Fletcher (Journalist and content specialist). Use the designed logo to create some custom, high end business card for Louise’s professional use.

Background considerations:
  • What does Louise want from her logo?
  • How can you make the business cards stand out in a professional context whilst keeping the costs down?
  • What other uses will the logo be put to, can you guide Louise in this?
  • Custom Business cards
    Brand Breakdown Sheet (not full guidelines)
  • Record of development and design on your blog.

3- wildflower identification
Brief- in collaboration with Jess Wood create publication to act as a wildflower identification guide. I will create an element of custom type and work on the layout while Jess will do the illustrations.

Background considerations-
  • think about the way the type and the illustrations will interact on the page and work as closely as possible to ensure that this is executed well.
  • Consider how your custom type element will interact with existing typography and how this meeting point can be used to best advantage.

  • The finished publication
  • Design boards detailing development.

4-penguin Book cover competition.

Create a book cover design for 'How to Be a Woman' by Caitlyn Moran to the specifications of the penguin book cover competition, for submission. The book will be re published as part of the classics range and needs a new cover to match its new position in literary history.

Background Considerations:- As a classic cover, the cover should make a nod to the history of classics that have come before it.- Although it is a feminist manifesto, it is about Caitlyn Moran's own personal feminism and constructing your own set of ideas and beliefs on the subject.- Consider the evolution of the audience as the book becomes a classic.- Think about design decisions in term of creating a striking and assertive visual for the cover that allows destination on a busy bookshop shelf.

Deliverables:-Printed Book cover design and suitable contextualising photographs.-Record of development on design practice blog.

5-Dr. ME

Brief: Create a mailer or piece of design that represents you as a designer and could be sent to professionals or studios as promotion of yourself and your work.

Background considerations:
  • What makes your work different to anyone else?
  • What are your core values as a graphic designer?
  • Consider format as a flexible thing, mould it to your message.

  • The printed mailer
  • Record of the design process on your design practice blog.

6-GF Smith Archive

Brief- Create a print (A4 square) to be exhibited at Colours May Vary during the Print Festival. The only limitation is that you must use print possesses. You will be allocated a paper from the GF Smith Range, Create a design to show it at its best.

Background Considerations:
-What colour have you got? How can it be celebrated through your design?
-What print methods can help achieve the best finish for your design?
-How can you use colours to make you print stand out in the exhibition?
- Consider the context of the print, it needs to fit into the colours may vary aesthetic whilst also fitting with the identity of GF Smith.

-Final Prints
-Images of the Exhibition
-Record of development on your design practice blog.


Brief-Brief: Create a logo/brand for the organisation 'Feminist Archives, Feminist futures to be applied across multiple media platforms and communicate the ideals of the organisation as well as its purpose.

Background considerations:
- Analyse and consider the branding of other similar Feminist organisations, evaluate what they are doing wrong and right and feed this into the design produced.
- Analyse the purpose and message of the organisation by talking to the individual we received the brief from and examining their existing online presence.
- Do at least a cursory investigation into feminist history to add to and refresh your existing knowledge.
- Consider how the format of the logo will be dictated by the application platforms, communicate closely with the client on this to ensure they get what they need.
- Consider the brand guidelines that could accompany the logo to aid latter applications.
- Organisation is key in any collaborations, find ways to maintain good communication and full collaboration throughout.

Mandatory Requirements:
- Close communication with the client.
- A functioning logo must be produced that is both usable by and representative of FAFF.

- Any pieces on which we were asked to apply the branding to.
- Any Brand guidelines or aids in applying the identity designed in a wider sense.

8-Love Rouge chalkboard

Brief- Create a large outdoor chalkboard for the vintage themed cafe Love Rouge.

Background Considerations - This chalkboard is one of the first things that many people will see of the cafe. As such, it needs to communicate the existing identity of the cafe and the experience of dining there.
Look at the interior of the cafe as well as their online presence to gauge their complete identity.
A distinctive part of the dining experience there is the mix and match crockery. Use the patterns and colours as a starting point for the board.
Research fixatives for outside chalkboards because the different mediums on chalkboards have different sticking ability.

-Record of project development on Design Practice Blog. 
-Images of the finished Chalkboard.

9-Students union work

Brief - Produce work in collaboration with the LCA SU as the communications office in the Leeds College of Art Students Union.

Background Considerations - Work done for the students Union can range from a moments notice to a couple of months, learn when to say yes and no to make sure your work is consistent and you are always giving your best.
There is an overarching budget for the year. Although it is not your job to manage the budget, bear it in mind when designing so that gross overspending doesn't occur.
Always consider the audience, which is a group of young creatives, so take risks and use this position as an opportunity to do risky and rule breaking designs.

Deliverables - This will be an extended overarching brief for the year, the deliverables of which will be dictated by the individual briefs as set out on my blog and in the design boards.

11. Triptych poster.

Brief: create an A1 poster to be displayed with two others in the Graphic design corridor for a week.

Background Considerations:
  • think about the posters that will be sitting next to your design, how can you work to create a sense of cohesion throughout the different designs?
  • What do you want to do, use this as a chance to hone your skills and work on you as designer.
  • Think about your audience who will be seeing this and how can you address them?

  • Printed poster to scale.
  • Record of your development on your design practice blog.

    Changes to Briefs throughout the year:
    As the year has progressed a number of the briefs I selected to do at the start of the year have changed. This has happened for a number of reasons, the major one being that I have learnt what is most useful for me to have in my portfolio. For example, an important part of my practice is how I collaborate with other people, a tangible change in my briefs is the increased number of collaborations that have taken place. Overall 5 of the 10 briefs are collaborations. This is by no means because I am afraid to design on my own, but rather that I design better when I can discuss the project in detail with someone else. Also, this fits into my career aspirations; I want to work as part of a team and collaborate as much as possible. To do so I need to demonstrate in my portfolio that I am a willing and good member of a collaborative team.
    Another change has been the complete removal of my Elittlebeth Design business set up. This change has come about because of a change in priorities. I know I can set this up when I have extra time. However, the chance to expand and improve my portfolio with live briefs will enable me to get a steady job from which to learn more about the creative industries and how my business could sit within it. So, Elittlebeth Design as a shop, is part of my long term plan rather than an immediate one. The introduction of briefs such as the logo designed for Letters by Louise (Brief 08) were also a result of this, replacing a hypothetical brief with a live one is always a better choice for me because it pushes me to be practical and go beyond my comfort zone.
    In conclusion, these changes have been the product of careful and positive cogitation on what I need to demonstrate to prospective employers and the skills that I need to hone in preparation for employment.