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Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

“How  have  changes  in  available  technology  influenced  the  development  of   graphic  design?”     Graphic  design  has  been  developing  throughout  the  years.  The  rapid   development  in  technology  used  to  create  and  display  graphics  and  art,  allows   designers  to  create  outstanding  designs.  This  essay  will  explain  and  outline  the   factors  as  to  how  technology  has  influenced  the  development  of  graphic   design.  The  artists  I  have  chosen  to  look  at  are  Kyle  Thompson,  Fiddle  Oak  and   Jurgen  Heckel.  I  will  look  at  the  work  they’ve  produced  and  show  how   technology  has  influenced  their  work.  E.g.  Now  being  able  to  take  higher   quality  photos  for  usage.     The  invention  of  the  Internet  has  lead  to  a  new  demand  for  online  designs,   and  multimedia  industries  have  switched  to  more  advanced  design  elements   than  ever  before.     Graphic  designers  in  the  past  had  to  rely  on  professionals  from  outside  trades   to  handle  technical  aspects  of  design.  The  improvement  of  computers  has   changed  the  routine  path  for  the  industry.  Graphic  designers  still  keep  in   contact  with  suppliers,  however  typesetters  are  no  longer  used.  The  designers   themselves  rely  heavily  on  computers  instead.  Now  clients  provide  all  of  the   copy  in  a  digital  format,  and  the  designers  are  in  charge  of  formatting  the   copy  and  creating  a  layout.  Once  clients  approve  the  designs  they  go  straight   to  prepress  preparation  or  printing.  The  path  followed  from  beginning  to  end   can  be  completely  digital  from  the  design  standpoint.     When  computers  were  introduced  this  changed  the  way  graphic  designers   worked.  Adobe  has  licensed  several  products  and  packaged  them  into  a   design  suite  with  software,  which  allows  people  to  manipulate  images  to  a   professional  standard  E.g.  Software  available  such  as  Photoshop  allows   designers  to  edit  images  using  various  different  advanced  tools.  This  shows   how  much  the  graphic  design  industry  has  improved  allowing  designers  to   create  almost  real  life  designs.  The  tools  graphic  designers  now  have,  have   improved  graphic  designing  so  much  and  has  placed  more  reliance  on   computers.  It  has  almost  taken  art  to  a  whole  new  level.     With  the  introduction  of  the  Internet,  it  has  lead  to  many  disadvantages  to   available  technology.  An  example  could  be  that  it  has  lead  to  plagiarism  and   copyright  issues.  Amateur  designers  look  for  designs  and  have  found  it  easy  to   take  an  image  directly  from  the  Internet  and  paste  it  into  their  own  project   without  permission.  This  is  an  example  of  how  technology  available  has  lead   to  many  problems.    


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

Kyle  Thompson    

 

               

 

 


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

Here  is  an  example  of  the  artist;  Kyle  Thompson,  a  self-­‐taught  photographer   from  Chicago,  Illinois  who  relies  greatly  on  the  usage  of  photography  and   computers.  His  work  is  mainly  based  around  taking  photos,  but  uses  advanced   software  in  order  to  manipulate  and  edit  his  designs,  e.g.  adding  in  the   floating  balloons  and  making  it  seem  as  if  he  is  in  the  river  in  this  specific   piece.  Without  the  introduction  to  available  technology,  artists  such  as  Kyle   Thompson  would  not  be  able  to  produce  the  work  they  put  forward.  I  feel   that  Kyle  Thompson  is  an  amazing  artist  that  backs  up  “How  have  changes  in   available  technology  influenced  the  development  of  graphic  design?”  very   well.  This  is  because  without  the  technology  we  have  today  Thompson  would   literally  have  to  rely  on  just  his  camera  and  props.     The  work  of  Kyle  Thompson  is  very  inspiring  to  up  and  coming  photographers,   and  it  definitely  reflects  on  how  far  technology  has  developed.  The  work  he   produces  is  mainly  based  around  surreal  self-­‐portraits.  He  bases  this  work   mostly  in  forests  and  abandoned  homes  to  suit  the  style  of  his  art.  Kyle   Thompson  does  not  just  rely  on  the  advancing  technology  we  see  today,  but   also  a  lot  of  props  are  used  in  his  work,  for  example  balloons.     The  use  of  props  is  vital  to  his  work  because  it  leaves  the  viewer  confused  and   wanting  to  find  out  exactly  what  the  narrative  is  about.  The  use  of  props  can   be  seen  as  not  that  effective.  For  example,  with  his  piece  of  him  standing  in   the  water,  comparing  to  life-­‐like  storyboards/narratives,  in  reality  someone   wouldn’t  be  standing  in  the  river  with  balloons  floating  next  to  them.     Throughout  his  designs,  you  begin  to  notice  colour  plays  a  major  role  in  his   work.  He  uses  strong,  effective  colours,  such  as  red  balloons  used  in  a  few  of   his  designs.  These  help  to  create  a  mood,  one  that  may  effect  viewers  in   different  ways.  In  Thompson’s  work,  for  example  the  river  and  balloons  piece,   you  are  able  to  notice  that  he  has  used  technology  to  place  all  objects,   including  himself  in  the  background  he  has  chosen.  Then  he  has  played   around  with  tools  such  as  hue/saturation/lightness  and  made  a  few  touch  ups   to  add  realism  to  the  piece.                      


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

Fiddle  Oak    

 

 

 


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

  Another  artist  I  have  chosen  to  include  in  my  essay  is  Fiddle  Oak.  His  work  also   consists  of  photography  and  manipulating  imagery.  Fiddle  Oak  relies  highly  on   technology  to  the  produce  work  he  puts  forward.  He  relies  on  software  such   as  Photoshop  in  order  to  edit  the  people  into  realistic  miniature  individuals   onto  different  surfaces.     Without  the  introduction  to  advanced  technology  Fiddle  Oak  would  not  be   able  to  produce  such  complex  designs.  Before  the  software  became  available,   completing  designs  like  this  would  have  taken  a  longer  period  of  time.     Fiddle  Oak’s  work  is  very  unique  to  those  of  other  artists,  partly  due  to   displaying  his  work  in  black  and  white,  and  how  he  tells  visual  narratives   through  his  work.  In  his  work,  I  can  see  how  he  uses  Photoshop  tools  to  create   that  almost  scary  and  old  feel  to  them.  Other  tools  that  have  been  noticed   include  the  blur  tool,  which  has  been  used  to  cut  off  any  unnecessary  parts  to   the  image  and  keep  the  focus  on  the  figure.     The  ideas  Fiddle  Oak  uses  of  putting  everything  out  of  proportion,  for  example   having  the  person/figure  tiny  upon  the  object  they  are  standing  on,  leaves  the   viewer  confused.  Looking  at  the  designs,  it  tells  us,  the  viewers,  the  world  is   quite  overwhelming.  Another  thing  I  really  like  is  the  quality  to  his  work,   adding  a  substantial  amount  of  realism.  This  confirms  my  views  on  how   technology  has  influenced  graphic  design,  as  before  artists  like  Fiddle  Oak   would  have  struggled  to  get  a  design  up  to  the  standard  of  the  work  he   produces  now.  This  technology  is  taking  over  most  forms  of  art.                                    


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

Jurgen  Heckel    

 

         

 

 


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

  Jurgen  Heckel  is  an  artistic  photographer  whom  relies  on  the  advancing   technology  in  cameras  and  editing  software  to  share  the  outstanding  work  he   produces.  His  work  is  very  inspirational  to  aspiring  photographers.  Basing  his   work  mainly  around  forests/woodlands,  advanced  technology  has  allowed   Heckel  to  share  his  amazing  work  being  able  to  play  around  with  tools  to   perfect  his  photographs.  Before  this  technology  became  available  you  would   have  to  wait  and  be  patient  to  catch  the  right  shot.  Waiting  for  things  like  the   weather  and  light  to  change  in  order  to  get  the  photograph  exactly  how  you   wanted  it  to  look.  Now  you  can  just  take  a  photo  without  having  to  try  as   much,  then  once  imported,  edit  and  retouch  it.  One  other  thing  I  really  like   about  the  work  of  Heckel’s  is  the  ‘Long  Exposure’  photographs  he  takes.  For   some,  this  development  in  camera  technology  might  be  easy,  but  Heckel   seems  to  perfect  every  photograph  he  uses  the  long  exposure  technique  in.       Overall,  the  artists  that  I  have  looked  at  show  different  emotions  through   each  piece  of  theirs.  For  example,  in  Kyle  Thompson’s  work,  he  stands  alone  in   most  of  his  surreal  artwork  with  strong  messages,  an  understanding  into  the   narrative,  being  shown  to  the  viewer.  This  immediately  has  an  impact  on  the   viewer  and  would  make  them  feel  sorry  for  him,  with  signs  of  loneliness  and   depression  being  shown  through  his  work.  This  then  reflects  on  what  is  going   on  in  the  narratives  and  the  props  used,  which  relates  to  developing   technology  required  to  re-­‐touch,  hue/saturate,  etc,  the  props/objects  used  in   the  designs  to  add  more  realism  to  them,  as  with  most  photos  you  take,  for   them  to  be  near  to  perfect  they  require  editing.  As  well  as  this  if  props  were   forgotten  or  placed  in  the  wrong  area,  this  can  easily  be  rectified  using   Photoshop  to  rearrange  objects  in  the  design  and  if  needed;  add  more  objects   into  the  design.  Photoshop  has  evolved  with  updates  being  available  so  that   now  it’s  possible  to  create  next  to  real  life  looking  images.                            


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

Releases     Now  with  faster  and  more  powerful  computers,  and  the  Internet,  graphics  is   going  to  be  of  a  much  higher  quality.  There  would  be  more  colours,  high   resolutions,  and  more  detailed  designs.  Basically,  the  computers  now  can   handle  these  graphics.     Graphic  tablets  and  new  designing  software  allows  designers  to  create  designs   without  limitations.  Because  graphic  designers  mostly  use  tablets  now,   instead  of  using  a  mouse  to  do  all  of  their  work,  they  are  able  to  create   complex  designs  much  faster  with  far  more  accuracy  and  detail.  Adobe  are   always  releasing  new,  updated  software,  which  allows  the  programs  to   feature  more  advanced  options  and  tools  for  illustrators  to  use.     Printers  now  print  with  a  much  higher  resolution.  They  mix  inks  together  to   create  images  that  seem  almost  real  life.  This  makes  graphic  designing  a  lot   easier  when  references  are  needed  to  work  from.  Not  only  printers,  but   scanners  have  developed  rapidly  too.  Now,  you  are  able  to  scan  in  pictures   and  be  able  to  expect  the  same  quality  to  the  real  life  image.  This  obviously   depends  on  the  quality  of  the  scanner  purchased.     New  Techniques  in  Graphic  Designing     The  same  techniques  used  to  be  used  in  graphic  design.  There  was  no   different  ways  of  graphic  designing  whereas  now  there  is  so  many.  Now  that   technology  has  increased,  this  offers  designers  hundreds  of  programs  to  work   with  and  lots  of  different  ways  of  designing.  For  example,  with  Photoshop  this   allows  designers  different  ways  of  designing  by  having  a  wide  variety  of   different  tools  to  work  with.  Artists  like  Kyle  Thompson  would  heavily  rely  on   software  like  Photoshop  in  order  to  manipulate  his  work.  An  example  would   be  the  piece  where  he  manipulated  imagery  on  one  of  his  designs  to  look  like   the  bag  on  his  head  was  on  fire.  Before,  such  designs  wouldn’t  have  been   possible  to  create  as  well  as  this,  but  now  with  available  technology  all  that  is   required  is  a  simple  skill  in  photography  and  skills  in  Photoshop.     Designs     Design  used  to  be  function  more  than  form.  Pages  consisted  of  large  amounts   of  text,  then  broken  up  by  very  small  images.  Product  packaging  was  simple   yet  effective.  Now,  every  element  within  a  website  fits  into  the  overall  design.   This  is  to  flow  easier  from  one  area  to  the  other.  Product  packaging  has   become  a  lot  more  artistic,  with  more  usage  of  colours  and  information.  


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

Technology  has  made  it  possible  for  new  equipments  to  be  taken  advantage   of,  as  well  as  for  new  mediums  to  be  used.  The  option  of  digital  art  is  also   there.  This  will  allow  people  to  work  with  colours  and  images  even  without   the  most  intensive  training  to  create  pieces.     Many  technological  changes  occurred  during  the  Modernist  period.  This   includes  photography,  the  invention  of  the  colour  spectrum,  and  so  on.   Through  to  the  postmodern  era,  changes  included  computer-­‐manipulated   photography,  digital  media,  etc.     Things  like  photography  have  made  art  a  lot  easier,  now  having  the  option  of  a   variety  in  colours  that  can  make  photos  stand  out.     Because  of  technology  it  has  completely  redirected  many  forms  of  art.  There   is  much  more  reliance  on  graphic  design  in  art  and  new  techniques  in  film   making  today  than  there  used  to  be.  Graphic  design  tools  are  used  for  the   advertising  industry,  but  can  also  be  used  to  edit  other  forms  of  art.       A  good  example  to  back  up  “How  have  changes  in  available  technology   influenced  the  development  of  graphic  design?”  would  be  my  father,  John   Cooper,  a  Commercial  Illustrator  of  Satellite  Studio,  Saatchi  &  Saatchi.   He  is  a  good  example  because  developing  technology  has  had  a  big  impact  on   how  he  worked  before  and  how  he  works  now.     Before  todays  available  technology,  creating  designs  for  clients  were  not  as   straightforward  as  they  are  today.  Paper,  pens,  airbrushes,  magic  markers  and   paints  were  used.  This  as  you  can  imagine  was  a  much  slower  process  and  left   little  room  for  error  or  mistakes.  However,  with  todays  technology,  if  mistakes   are  made,  this  can  easily  be  rectified  by  the  touch  of  a  button.     Email  has  also  had  a  major  impact  on  the  company  and  has  made  getting  work   done  and  sent  off  a  lot  quicker.  Before  email,  once  the  work  was  completed  it   would  have  to  be  couriered  to  wherever  it  was  needed.  This  could  often  be  in   another  part  of  the  UK  or  overseas.  Now  with  the  touch  of  a  button,  whole   images  can  be  sent  across  the  world  in  a  matter  of  seconds.  Also,  the  internet   and  improved  printers  make  finding  references  much  easier.     Space  was  also  an  issue.  Before  computers  arrived,  much  more  space  was   required  for  working  and  storing  equipment.  Now  all  that  is  needed  is  a   computer.  This  means  if  an  urgent  job  is  needed,  my  father  no  longer  has  to   travel  to  his  workplace  in  London  where  all  his  equipment  was  stored.  He  can   now  work  from  home  on  his  Mac  producing  designs  of  a  very  high  standard.  


Jonathan  Cooper  Art  Graphics  

To  sum  up  my  essay,  I  feel  that  I  have  successfully  proven  how  improving   technology  has  influenced  graphic  design  whilst  using  example  artists;  Kyle   Thompson,  Fiddle  Oak,  and  Jurgen  Heckel  to  prove  this  theory.  Each  of  the   chosen  artists  use  advanced  software  to  explore  the  telling  of  visual  narratives   within  their  artwork.  Each  artist  would  use  software  like  Photoshop  to  edit   and  manipulate  things  such  as  facial  expressions  to  props,  to  tell  a  narrative   better.  For  each  artist  that  I  have  looked  at,  it  has  been  proven  that   technology  has  influenced  graphic  design  for  them  greatly.  


Essay graphics