1. Type of brief: What type of project do you feel you best respond to – is it a “tight brief ” with very clear guidelines and demands or an “open” brief where the outcomes are far more open and unspecified? I feel I respond well to both types of brief but in different areas. Tighter briefs allow my ideas to form and become more concrete much quicker as I know what they must be appropriate for early on, whereas I more open briefs very good for exploring ideas that are very different from each other and covering all bases. 2. Integral elements: Are there integral elements that often form key elements within your work – in other words does photography play an important part in your work or is it typography or illustration or hand drawn lettering or a text and image relationship. What have you identified and how do you wish to develop this? I find a combination of text and image helps me to form and develop ideas a lot; forming a dialogue within the text allows me to keep track of what I’ve thought about what I’ve already tried and what I can do next, and images help me to visualise how a project will look in various forms. Currently I do this through a combination of text and thumbnails and text and photos, this has worked very well for me so far so I ai m to continue with it.
3. Success: What are your strengths? Where have you been most successful? What do you think was the reason for that positive experience? My strengths lie in generating quick, initial ideas to give myself a variety to work from, develop and refine, and documenting the tweaks and changes made to final pieces in order to reach the very final artefact for each project. The reason for this, I think, is purely because I enjoy it and enjoy seeing ideas coming together. 4. Problems: Where have the problems arisen; have you been able to overcome them? My problem is I often jump from development to a final piece while missing some developing stages inbetween, often due to working digitally and not documenting enough changes or due to poor time management. With more recent projects I have overcome this by being more thorough in recording my development both on paper and digitally. 5. Personality: What are you interested in, what are you about? Do you feel you have been able to introduce your personality and interests in your work? In what creative direction do you want to proceed? Over both semesters I’ve found a particular interest in editorial & book design, poster and logo design. These are the areas of graphic design I would like to pursue most as I found them the most enjoyable.
D&AD: Little White Lies & Ministry of Sound
University of Cumbria Logo
Photography Book Manifesto
1. Which brief did you choose and what opportunities and constraints did you identify in relation to the brief? Which aspects of your initial research have influenced your design work? I chose the Ministry of Sound typographic poster brief. I saw it as an opportunity to work on my typography and grid skills, making sure the typography had the most emphasis within the piece. This was a slight constraint for me as I am more image-orientated. The experimentation with ink, silhouettes and colour in my initial research were what influenced my final ideas as I particularly liked their outcome. 2.
Explain the concept you have come up with?
I took the idea of a crowd of people dancing in a dark room with strobe lights and smoke with their hands in the air as my initial inspiration, and wanted to recreate it in a little more of an abstract manner. The way the image is diffused in some areas looks like both smoke and glitter, leaving an open interpretation for the audience. 3. Do you feel you have successfully met the creative demands of the brief? Indicate how you have done this or where the flawed decisions have adversely affected the design solution. While I do think my typography is successful as hierarchy has been established and the use of a grid is obvious, the image still has a little more dominance than the text in the overall piece. The image had a better impact at a bigger size which left less room for the typography to have its necessary emphasis, which would need to be improved were I to undertake this project again.
D& AD: Ministry of Sound
Initial exploration of possible fonts. Unsuccessful.
Beginning to look at imagery.
looking at colour and combining imagery with font as a filler. Thumbnails and layout development.
Exploration of colour for imagery to be used later.
Initial early thumbnails, then progression to digital experimentation. Documented adjustments to move towards a final piece ready for print.
D& AD: Ministry of Sound
1. What ideas were you trying to communicate through your written manifesto? My manifesto takes a realism stance on life; some points seem pessimistic initially but were written with more positive original intentions. Many points were based on personal experiences and what I’ve learned from them, and others were general opinions and points of view that I hold. I tried to include some of my own personality and humour in the way the points were worded, and feedback from other students would suggest I have managed this. 2. Explain how you translated your written concept into a visual artifact? Explain how you feel you have done justice to your concept. If you haven’t, tell us what improvements you would make? Each point of my manifesto was kept short, sharp and straight to the point, which meant it translated well as the typographical artifact it ended up being. I originally thought of doing a set of cards but it didn’t seem to sit well so I decided on a booklet instead, which worked much better as I included images as well and the double page spread format of the booklet worked far better. 3. Having written and designed your manifesto, how do you think can: use it to inform/direct your process? To bring your own agenda to design problems? To suggest directions for future exploration? Several points in my manifesto are ambiguous enough to be applied both to life in general and to be specifically narrowed down to design work. “Don’t give up, move on”, “Listen to yourself, you’re usually right” and “Don’t fear simplicity, embrace it instead” work particularly well in this respect: if an idea doesn’t work, move to a new one; go with your instincts and don’t over-complicate things. “Art is the best for of escapism” would also be a great suggestion to be immersed in a project entirely both to get the work done and to enjoy it.
Care less. It’s much easier.
Do not give up - move on.
Some people are just crap. Don’t bother.
Hindsight is pretty useless.
Ignorance is bliss. Enjoy it while it lasts.
Make your own happiness. Do what you want.
Your mind is your own. Keep it that way.
Art is the best form of escapism.
Listen to yourself. You’re usually right.
10. Don’t fear simplicity. Embrace it instead.
How will you develop and broaden your technical abili-
By continuing to use them both in course work and in free time on self-initiated projects. I will practise existing skills as well as look into new ones by means of software guides and tutorials on the internet, or experimentation with traditional media - for example, Iâ€™d love to be more skillful with paints. 2. How will you develop and broaden you knowledge of contemporary practice in relation to your own interests? I already follow many design blogs and I frequently purchase design, illustration and photography books and magazines. I intend to carry this on and find new blogs, journals etc to read so that my reading subjects do not become stale. 3. How will you nurture and develop you current strengths? By using them and practising with them as often as possible. I am hoping to undertake self-initiated projects as well as design and illustration in my free time over the summer, so hope to develop my drawing skills and ways of approaching a design problem that way. 4. Where do you need to strengthen your game and more importantly how are you going to make this happen? What action needs to take place? While I do think my development process has improved since last semester, thereâ€™s still room for more improvement still. I need to close the gap between more refined ideas and the final piece, so I will try to pace and avoid getting ahead of myself, and take each step towards the final piece of work more slowly and throughly.