Category Archives: ASSIGNMENTS

Assignment 3

“You’ve been contacted by a group of local shops who want to develop a campaign to encourage people to value local produce and shopping, to promote a greener agenda in terms of knowing where your food, goods and services come from, as well as a broader social agenda of encouraging people to value the interactions that only a high street can offer. Locate this project in your own area… Try and pick a range of real shops with existing identities to work with.

Develop visual material that communicates to your audience the key messages and values of the campaign. This material should provide some form of overall ‘umbrella’ visual identity but also allow existing companies or shops their own identity within it…”

I began my research in Braunton where I live – you can see it’s not overflowing with pretty architecture and there’s no central landmarks to identify it.

But what isn’t apparent from the pictures is thats its a very nice village – you can pretty much sum it up as having a cool surf-y vibe with plenty of nice cafes. Also you cannot under any circumstances call it a town. The locals are very touchy about that.

Its allegedly the biggest village in the UK

As I’ve lived here less than a year, Im not an expert on where I live, and I went to Braunton museum to have a look. The ladies in there were wonderful – really kind and helpful.

I also had a chat to a really helpful lady who works in one of the local shops. I explained that I was a student, and what the brief was… She gave me a really good run down of the demographic and how retailers perceive Braunton. She explained that the village wouldn’t survive without the tourist trade, but that added revenue makes this quite an affluent area. It attracts people here because of easy access to the sea and beautiful countryside. Although its a long journey, it attracts ‘DFLs’ (down from London). A few months ago we had a builder working for us – he said something similar, which was that people move here for the lifestyle (he did), its a very healthy outdoors-y sort of place (running, cycling, surfing etc). The shops sell nice clothes/ornaments and surf wear, and the cafes are all rather ‘up market’. To buy some items you’d need to travel 5 miles down the road to Barnstaple. This is all lovely but rather ironic for me as due to health problems I don’t get to be sporty. But still.

She let me take photos of some of their stock – we agreed that Braunton typifies  these kind of beach inspired colours and stylish prints.

A map I picked up at the museum which helpfully lists all the shops and businesses in Braunton

Self explanatory – newly refurbished information centre

The other thing I have learnt about Braunton, is that Braunton Burrows is a very important place in terms of conservation – the area is known for various species of flowers, butterflies and birds. Some of them are quite rare.  At Braunton, the river Caen opens into estuary, and Saunton Sands beach is a short distance from there.

I researched a bit about Braunton burrows  as its a UNESCO site…

I googled each type of butterfly, bird and plant associated with the area, and saving the images.

Im not sure where this is taken from, but it must be 9 miles away(!)

And Im pretty sure one of the birds was a curlew…

Marbled white butterfly (so pretty) and a Plover

The sand dunes (marram grass) are an identifiable all over Braunton Burrows.

And some quick research online in reference to shopping locally

My notes… Thinking about what physical form the campaign would take

More notes…

 

How to promote Braunton? Thinking about green issues…

I think the concept of shopping locally really has to do with promoting a sense of community and talking about why we love our local village/town/city. In seems a good idea to celebrate it, rather than nag people to spend money.

I needed a strap line…Something a bit less dull than ‘Shop Local’?! I ran it by my partner who grumbled he couldn’t possibly come up with something off the cuff when I’d spent hours thinking about it…. 5 minutes later he comes up with “Keep Braunton Breathing”. Perfect!

Next I was trying to decide on what to include visually – what elements best sum up Braunton. The beach huts aren’t entirely accurate as they belong just down the road in Saunton.

I felt surfing, bikes, birds, butterflies and sand dunes all depict Braunton very well, as they are all available in abundance.

I was having a bit of trouble with the bottom section – My initial thought was to show a curve from land to sea, but I was unhappy with the shape.

Meanwhile I had a look a typefaces… I wanted something quite modern, relaxed and friendly. It was helpful to print them out and select some potential ones.

I also researched all the shops that had websites, and took screen shots of their logos. Im aware I need to work in their needs and identities. I can’t see how to incorporate these logos without turning them to black and white to give some sort of unity – in fact I then discovered the Braunton bike shop does exactly this to display the assorted brands they stock on their website.

I was fussing a bit whether to variety in tone might be a problem…I adjusted curves for some very pale ones so they didn’t disappear.

It was then time to get into Illustrator and begin to put it together…

I reduced the ‘hill’ to a simple curve which I think works better…And I experimented with typography. Ideally I would like the text and image to both work alone, as well as together. This would potentially give me greater flexibility for the different needs and formats.

It occurred to me that the shop owners might want their logos featured prominently…But I hope not, as this is difficult to pull off. Ugh!

I would like to persuade them to keep them small and discrete…

Nope. Still smaller! This is mucking up the hierarchy

And finally…

Black & White finished versions

I also wanted to suggest ways that this campaign could be personalised by individual shops. (Im quite proud of this bit!!) Here’s some ideas:

The shops could choose the bullet points, and this demonstrates that different shaped logos all look OK and don’t fight the layout.

Some bolder colour variations  ( I find the pink/purple a step too far for my taste but I thought I should experiment!)

More muted colour…

hmm…

Ultimately its highly likely certain colours might well be requested by the shop owners – to some extent it might be possible to produce a range, to reflect the different businesses involved. But this could get complicated. My inclination is to go for the sea as inspiration – hopefully it reflects that fact that Braunton tends to be quite ‘up market’?!

My Shop Local Campaign for Braunton, North Devon

An advert mocked up in the local free ad publication (EX 33)

A shop front mock up

I would like to think this design works for the following reasons:

  • the design can be used in a variety of sizes and formats
  • the image is simple enough to be scaleable
  • it can be used in black and white or a range of colours
  • the design can be adapted to the individual needs of a particular business.

Depending on the needs of the shop owners, this design could be used on stickers, carrier bags, on banners, posters and in advertising. And a flyer could be produced with further information about Braunton and green issues. There is possibly a balance to be had with this – on the one hand we’re encouraging ‘virtue signalling’ from consumers, on the other, I think its important not to nag or be too ‘worthy’ in the approach. Also, it occurs to me that although this is a ‘green initiative’ not all shops will be ‘green’ per se. They might import from a distance but still want economic support!

I think in real life this brief would be very tricky, as it could be ‘design by committee’ – the more people viewing my work at each stage, the more involved it would be. I really dread to think how long it would take to get everyone to agree! I would hope it might actually be funded by a central body such as the local council or an umbrella business group – with an actual person who can sign off on the design when they are happy with it!

 

 

http://www.northdevonbiosphere.org.uk/braunton-burrows.html

http://www.tgomagazine.co.uk/walk/braunton-burrows/

http://www.devon-online.com/towns/braunton/Welcome.asp

http://www.countrysideinfo.co.uk/biospher_reserves/braunton.htm

http://www.nevillestanikkphotography.co.uk/image/10022/Braunton/

http://www.brauntoncommunitynews.co.uk/gallery/category/braunton-village-fair

http://www.birdguides.com/webzine/article.asp?a=983

http://butterfly-conservation.org/679-866/marbled-white.html

Assignment 2 – Food & Drink

‘You’ve been commissioned to develop a small one-off publication for a Sunday paper that celebrates any aspect of food and drink. The publication will appear as an insert within a Sunday supplement, is A5 in size and must run to no more than 12 pages, including the covers…
For the content of the publication, draw on any aspect of food and drink that interests you.’

Maybe its getting a little boring when I say ‘Oh I loved this brief!’ – but there I go again, I really enjoyed this one, although it was a lot of work.

My preparation for it was to look at as many print layouts as I could, not just about food, but general interest magazines too. I actually only found one A5, which was the Guardian’s saturday guide thingy they always have:

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I felt it was unlikely I would include a ‘contents’ page, as our booklet is pretty small, but here’s theirs, as you can see, the first column is double width.

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Here the heading spreads across the entire double spread. The more I looked, the more I began to see patterns, or ways of fitting information together. I  looked carefully at the number and frequency of typefaces and weights, how the designers  broke up the grid in different ways (or used multiple grids) and so on. Above you can see the drop dap has a splash of blue, then repeated above the pull quote. Anything that created a sense of unity I tried to make a mental note of too.

I looked at mail order, special interest magazines (cycling, woodworking, regional, lifestyle etc…) And specifically food magazines (‘Easy cook’ and ‘goodfood’ are both BBC publications, one budget, one a bit more ‘up market’. As you’d expect, the budget magazine has more ‘punchy’ colours and clunkier fonts.

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Apart from the size difference, I didn’t detect a great deal of difference in the layout between the A5 and A4.

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These are all pages from the Tesco magazine, I was interested to see how they maintained variety and kept a sense of unity across pages. For example the blue ‘rough paint’ background behind the words ‘Great Start’ and the green behind ‘Make more of it’ are the same style. However, the columns of text vary, along with other features that break up the space in very different ways, and of course the typography relies on more than one font. Some pictures overlap, or ‘break out’ of their column, which makes things more lively too.

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There was a lot to take in and I was anxious to draw on ideas, but not simply copy! Next, I needed to work out my specific area of food. To some extent, I already had an idea what images I would use – I had already taken photos during my OCA photography course with this exact brief in mind. Unsurprisingly, food photography is blooming’ hard, especially for the likes of me, as I am a beginner. Still, I’m quite chuffed with some of them, and hope they will fit the bill.

I had an idea that my newspaper supplement could be called ‘Eat Well’ – to combine the idea of both healthy eating, and eating with enjoyment.

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I roughed out ideas for my cover

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But my ideas also need to work with the images I have already taken. I printed out some of them to get an overview…

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Then gathered some more from Pixabay (which states permission for re-use). And I began thinking about overall page layouts.

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With the help of a few trusty books

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I wanted to work with ‘real’ text, as tempting as it is to use the fake stuff! I didn’t think I would be getting much experience unless I used a particular word count and stuck to it. It took quite a long time to research the information I wanted – some of it snippets and random facts (e.g. I had a photos of grapes, citrus fruit, lentils etc so I looked up information on each)

I found several long articles which fitted my images for subject, from the BBC, the NHS, the Guardian and the Telegraph (both online). At first I found a website that estimated word count for you – but then realised I could simply cut and paste into Pages and turn on the word count feature there (doh). It became clear that I would have to heavily edit articles to fit them into a single page or pages, as each A5 page can’t carry a huge amount. I tried to edit down and make a coherent article in Pages, without editing the word count directly in Indesign (as that seemed like cheating!)

I then reached a point where I had my pool of images and some articles. I decided to place them roughly inside Indesign, at first just using the default typeface Minion Pro.

My grid – I wanted a fairly squarish set of divisions, but not so many as to feel overwhelmed, so I kept it simple.

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Although I had explored many ideas with the cover, when it came to choosing an image, I just felt pulled towards a full splash of colour…

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This close up of pizza topping (Pixabay) looked great. Like pretty much all the images, its landscape, not portrait which meant with every image I had to reposition it somewhat. Anyway. I opted for this mouthwatering image with a simple line of text.

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I know I should have looked at other options….but I like this!!! On to the articles….

Experimenting with placement – I actually printed these out, placed them on the floor, and moved across the room to look at them from a distance. It gave me a fresh eye, and a sense of what might be eye catching to a casual reader.

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I find it helpful to consult my partner with some of this stuff – he felt the image shouldn’t be covered over with text so I did move them apart.

Text wrap? Hmm…

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I chose the one on the right (below) as I hope it has a sense of movement with the tilted text, and allows a fair bit of white space.

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I found this lovely picture of bread online, however it is very dominant, and I was a bit attached to my own picture of the boot (!)

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Here’s the body copy for the article. I had to stick to the existing subheadings, which meant some adjusting to the tracking to get a good fit.

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I decided my bread would be a pale enough background to sit behind text and add interest

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The recipe page – I searched for appropriate recipes to suit these images. I noticed that the Tesco magazine invites readers to read full recipes on their website, so I nicked the idea, and used it for my pancakes!

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This was the most complicated page layout. I wanted to push myself, as I felt arranging snippets of information and brief facts was a bit of a puzzle, compared to a single article.

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Some images are cropped to a border, so really had to be arranged at the edge, others I could choose the position more freely. I was aiming for some sort of rotational flow, and a balance of red and green colour.

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My final consideration was the typography… e.g. some serif options

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I spent a long time scribbling notes and considering what weights were available, and how each one looked on the page. I ruled some out as they sometimes had a very different ‘feel’ or too high an x height (I didn’t want anything long and lean)

Eventually ( and I promise I really thought this through) I actually preferred minion pro! So thats my decision – it stays!!

I went through the same process with sans serif, and settled on Raleway, which is highly legible, and relatively contemporary looking. Also (and I am feeling a little smug at my cleverness) its a google font, which means the exact same typeface could appear on the website.

Not sure this was wise, but as a final touch I looked into scripts and handwritten styles. This eventually led me to Clive Barker, which is the typeface on the title page about carbs (see below)

I then printed out a version using the ‘Print booklet’ option. It is not stapled, and obviously just a mock up, but allows some sense of how it would look!

Assignment 2 Finished Version

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Experimenting with Website Mockup…

Obviously I wanted to keep the continuity from print to web – the first common factor being the typeface Raleway. Apart from this, I kept the same sort of colour scheme, using rusts and greens. I also imagined there might be two menus for different kinds of information.

The black border is simply because I took screen shots as I was working

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You can see that I was experimenting with the idea of the links – baking, vegetarian, meat & fish as ‘tabs’, in a ‘folder’. This large lettering would be OK as a home page, but ‘eat well’ would need to appear on every page, as a smaller title. Not sure about this amount of green…

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You could take the opacity down of the main image…maybe shrink it narrower than I’ve shown here?

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I could have continued to play with proportions, placing and hierarchy with these, but this is the one I settled on as working across multiple pages:

Final Website Mockup

The links in top navigation bar would change colour from rust to green on mouse over. Depending on the number of links needed for the ‘tabs’, they could align left like this, with room to add more…

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Or centred, it would depend what else the layout required.

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Refs:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/foodanddrinknews/11343057/An-avocado-a-day-is-good-for-you-so-heres-our-top-recipes.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/mary_berrys_lasagne_al_16923

https://pixabay.com/en/food-salmon-teriyaki-cooking-712665/

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/13-health-benefits-of-oranges.html

http://www.shape.com/blogs/weight-loss-coach/summers-secret-weight-loss-weapon

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/ingredient-focus-strawberries

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=39

http://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/are-olives-good-for-you

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/ingredient-focus-spinach

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/healthyeating/5612738/Are-lentils-the-perfect-food.html

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-5488/7-Health-Benefits-of-Lentils.html

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/8-great-reasons-to-eat-more-onions.html

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/love-it-or-hate-it-broccoli-is-good-for-you.html

http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/loseweight/Pages/the-truth-about-carbs.aspx

http://www.wonkyvegboxes.co.uk/about

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/feb/05/asda-puts-uks-first-supermarket-wonky-veg-box-on-sale

http://wordstopages.com

https://wordcounter.net/words-per-page

 

Assignment 1 – Underground Cultures

“Create a series of posters for the London transport system that celebrates the idea of underground culture in some way. This could be an aspect of London Underground’s own typographic or design history, an aspect of popular culture or music, or a celebration of minority cultures’ heritage within the city. Choose something that you find interesting to research and visually explore, or an area you currently don’t know that much about.

The posters will be A0 in size, but you only need to design them at A4 or A3. The scale of the poster invites a bold and playful approach that should be as much decorative as informative. Your audience will be people walking past the posters in the corridors and stairwells of the Tube, sitting or standing on train platforms or viewing them on the sides of buses, so they need to be eye-catching and colourful. They must have a strong visual dynamic but at the same time carry some information about the underground culture you’re portraying.”

Here’s an infographic about the history of the London underground itself (from Buzzfeed) much of this I didn’t know at all!

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This infographic about British subcultures comes from menswear style.co.uk

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Of course a few more groups have emerged since the 1980s. Peter York’s exploration of Hipsters was highly entertaining (Peter York’s Hipster Handbook currently available on BBC iplayer) He is familiar with identifying groups of people from a marketing viewpoint. We may all object to labels, but its often rather accurate grouping people together.  He also points out how often these trends filter down to the mainstream, such high street coffee chains, and I’ve noticed a fair few beard-y blokes in the Fatface catalogue!

Anyway. I decided to focus on music. But I got pretty bogged down reading about all the subcultures and complicated history. Its a fascinating subject, but there’s so much information, I was finding it hard to filter anything down, or refine visually with what I was looking at. The genres, and sub-genres are endless, not to mention that some well known music styles, such as Bhangra and Brit Pop could be associated with the Midlands and the North more than London.

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The typographic posters of the London skyline incorporating London bands is very effective. They have impact both in monochrome and colour.Theres a lovely flow to these, and very effective composition. I noted the use of ‘white’ space (in the sky and for the thames) and the use of focal points (e.g. Blur and the london eye). So clever!

I looked at rave culture, reggae, and rude boys….hippies, punks, garage and grime…

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Its hard to distill such a large topic and I felt a bit overwhelmed trying to represent quite a large time frame too. At some point you need to start to simplify…

I took a bit of time out to read and watch a few things about poster design. I found the design company Blind and others had some really interesting information. Here are my notes – I found it really helpful to try and properly clarify hierarchy in poster design, and think about what I want to achieve.

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And some useful info from one of my graphic design books

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This really helped me to simplify and sift through the information I had gathered.I originally thought I would link music styles to certain areas/tube stations of London, but this proved to be difficult – some music styles just aren’t associated with a single area.

I decided to pick a few styles/genres, particularly if they can be fairly easy identified visually. A few things stuck out – Ska/TwoTone is often connected to a checkerboard design, Mods a target symbol, and so on.

Obviously, there are issues about what sort of images I can source without infringing copyright. A creative commons search allowed me to pull together some other genres – folk and punk. Here’s my image resources for inspiration and some available to re-use:

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There was also free vector of a trilby I found which was very lucky! Should be useful!!

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I would like to use people for my posters but I’m lacking a strong face for Mods which might be an issue if I want to make 4 consistent posters. Here’s some images I thought would look great as the main focal point…The woman with the guitar could be cut out from her more modern background, and her hat made to look a bit more checkerboard, as a Ska reference. Jamaican culture had a big influence on Ska, so we could possibly view her as representing that link.

Hippy…Ska…Punk

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My next step was to work on some really rough designs on paper. You can see I was exploring the checkerboard, trademark trilby and referencing the underground map, designed by Harry Beck. I chose landscape as the format, as the brief mentioned the side of buses.

Roughs

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I explored using the style of the underground map as a background, or connecting with lettering. Perhaps running above or over objects, such as the trilby.

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I think sometimes you can see what might work from roughs, other times I need to work things up a little to explore where it might go. Unfortunately I discovered some images online of lettering shaped from the london underground map – which made me feel like I wasn’t being very original.

I moved on to Illustrator to see what I made of the trilby. At this stage I simply chucked a checker board around it to see if that would work.

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From there I worked up some others, at first simply using Myriad Pro as default.

Next I wanted consistency between the sans serif of the London Underground logo and the typeface on the main part of the poster. Unfortunately, the original was Johnston and I don’t have it. So I made a vector of the logo using Gill Sans as a substitute.

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I also took the liberty of changing the colours within the logo to experiment (Whether you would actually be allowed to do this is debatable! It could be that they specify only the red and blue of their own logo) Here are my variations

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It seems to me the checkerboard background has the most impact, so thats my first choice.

Next up is Mod. Again here are my roughs – as I need to be thinking about these as a set, I’m trying to think about how I can link these as a theme.

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I wanted to work up a poster using the photo of the Vans (shoes) with a mod logo – its a strong image that will hopefully have good impact. And I also wanted to explore the bike. Oops I forgot the logo with the bike.

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mod3-01 mod4-01 Obviously I’ve used a diagonal background again, and experimented with making the ‘o’ a target, but I think perhaps its fighting with the circular logo?

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I don’t feel the whole bike works as well. This is better

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Next I chose to look at punk

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I quite like the colours of the ones above, but the placement of the lettering is off.

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Again, this looks cluttered…and the lettering needs re-positioning…

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This is better I think – the lettering corresponds to her eye line, I’ve also moved her to the left.

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And lastly, folk… these came together more quickly, and I think work quite well.

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As I was working in Illustrator, I kept little jpegs on the art board of the previous posters, to try and keep a sense of unity between posters – obviously they need to work as a set. I then had trouble because I felt my Ska poster (which I had done first) was the only one with a diagonal set at a different angle. It should be simple to correct, but I found it quite tricky. I’m still wondering if the checks running at the bottom make your eye drop off the page? Hmm..I think its OK but I’m also aware that this is the only poster where the text overlaps the image. However, the logo is now positioned top right in all the posters, which I prefer.

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Poster Set – Final Images

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Plus points –

I think these posters are eye catching and do have impact.

They are clear and easy to read.

They are easily identifiable as a set.

Minus points –

They may be too similar!

In keeping to Gill Sans throughout, there’s no variation in typography.

The logo is not in precisely the same place. I feel it should be exactly aligned or obviously different, not ‘nearish’!

Reflection

I think in an effort to ensure I have a set, I played it too safe.  It might have been better to vary the composition more, and experiment with typography. Clearly there’s a balance between consistency and originality which I could have explored more fully.

I fell into the trap of assuming that because ‘Ska’ and ‘Mod’ are usually written in sans serif capitals that I had to mimic that. I did briefly look at using a serif for the subheading for my ska poster, I now feel I should have carried that through.

These comments apart, I am pleased that my confidence levels have improved – I feel I can work more quickly than I used to, and assess strengths/weaknesses in my designs more effectively. At level one graphic design I often found myself thinking ‘thats not right, but I don’t know why’! The ‘why’ is emerging (I think!)

 

Refs – Discussion of music & subcultures

theguardian.com/culture/2014/mar/20/youth-subcultures-where-have-they-gone”

theguardian.com/culture/gallery/2011/jul/10/10-best-british-youth-cultures

dazeddigital.com/fashion/article/24544/1/the-da-zed-guide-to-british-subculture

bjp-online.com/2016/05/stomping-ground-london-subcultures-in-the-70s-and-80s/

bjp-online.com/2016/06/africas-fashion-tribes-and-londons-subcultures/

menswearstyle.co.uk/2015/03/10/guide-london-explores-history-of-british-fashion/1597

buzzfeed.com/patricksmith/pictures-of-women-from-underground-london-in-1981?utm_term=.xiogd20xv#.jl5kBq8Go

theguardian.com/artanddesign/gallery/2015/sep/11/sharp-natty-rudeboys-today-photograph

theguardian.com/fashion/2016/jun/10/paul-smith-celebrates-40-years-of-punk

2-tone.info/articles/label.html

2toneposters.co.uk/about-teflon

theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2012/jul/26/londons-unique-glorious-music-scene

mfiles.co.uk/londons-music-scene-past-and-present.htm