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{ } Visual Thinking

‘Visual Thinking’ focuses on extending your visual awareness, individual creative language and understanding of contemporary practice while examining the fertile and complex semiotic and aesthetic nature of word, image and object.

1 Typography as a Semiotic Resource.

“ � Task One

Working in groups of two choose an initial letter from the following set and based on the terminology and glossaries contained within the brief create a word that is related to the unit - you can produce it in caps or lowercase. After careful planning and research you are required to design and make a three dimensional initial character that communicates the meaning of the word. The model can be made of found objects but must finally be wall mounted.

Word Bank

We started with a word bank as a little inspiration for starting places with words relating to our chosen Letter. We were given ‘T’ so explored any visuals that came to our heads before searching the internet for futher word ideas.

Tequila Turbine Turtle Tea Tomato Tornado Turn Twist Tie Tummy Tongue Tits Toe Teeth Tangerine Typography

Type Trousers Tarantula Theatre Time Thyme Tartan Television Technology Tan T-shirt Test Tadpole Tail Train

T-rex Traffic Trip Transport Turf Tulip Turnip Tube Textiles Thermography Trash Tools Tampon Texture Teletubies Tie dye Tacs Tic Tacs Tape

Tequila I have sketched out a couple of words to visualise the possible ideas for further development. For tequila we had the idea of creative the ‘T’ out of flaming shots and adding salt and lemon at the end to show

Turf This sketch was one of our favourite ideas. We thought it would be effective to create our ‘T’ out of turf and mud on a 3D format. We prefere this to the Tequila idea as it is more original and we

will definitly devlop it digitally to see how it could look, along with a few others.

how it is actually Tequila shots. We would also probably use gold Tequila so it’s coloured, transparent shots could be confused with vodka or sambuca, which would make our piece harder to enterpret.

Digital Development

Initial sketches were only a way of visualising ideas, but they just aren’t as effective as a digital development. This gives us the ability to see how it would look as a more realistic outcome.

Twigs Using a tutorial online I learnt how to use the ‘Puppet Warp’ tool, which i then used to manipulate two images of twigs, which after rotation and scaling formed our twigs.

Tie I found a basic shirt and tie photograph onine and using a masking layer, duplicated and manipulated the tie to extend forming a ‘T’ on top of the collar on the shirt.

Turf This was also a photoshop development, but it was nice to see the comparison between the sketched version and the digital. I found a section of soil which I then duplicated on a gridded format, to create the base of the ‘T’. Then using a masking layer I added a layer of turf to the top.

Mock Ups

We started to actually create minature outcomes from a digital ideas to see how each material would or wouldn’t work. It also gave us the ability to see how the timescale we had would or wouldn’t suit the outcome we were producing.

We began to create a 3D ‘T’ out of wet twigs. First we started with the frame and then aimed to weave more twigs inbetween to fill it out and give it a structure that would allow it to stand alone. However, this technique didn’t work as well as we had hoped, due to the large scale we created it on, as well as the fact the twigs were too damp and soft, it just couldn’t support itself and didn’t actually portray the shape of a ‘T’ without assistance.

Learning from the mistakes, we collected some shorter, stronger and drier twigs, and became to make a smaller mock up but on less of a 3D scale. Instantly we could see it was a more effective approach to designing it even though we were worried it may have lacked complexity. If this is a deisgn we carry to our final letter, we would build it on a larger scale, and vary what is weaved into it. Currently it is roughly 27cm X 32cm so there is definitely room for improvement on scale for final presentation.

To make this outcome as realistic as possible we had considered going to a field and digging up a ‘T’. But logically that was never going to be a possilibity. Instead we bought some astro-turf and soil and created our own. Using a brownie cake mix cardboard shaper we packed in the soil in layers, spraying it with water to keep it moist layer by layer.

Once compact enough we cut away to form the ‘T’ and removed excess soil with a spoon. After cutting a ‘T’ to match the size from the astro-turf we simply placed it ontop and padded a little more soil round the edges to fill it in and make it look like a sold shape.


After some crits with lectures we were advised to experiment with adding scenarios to our ‘T’ to make it more interesting and eye catching.

I made a little scamping scene from a tiny toy bear statue and used toothpicks and cardboard for the tipi and fire. I like the idea behind this but it bares no purpose and just distracts from our letter as a whole.

We used our original mock up to create this sceneario on, and as you can see, the soil has dried out, crumbled and lost its shape. This has made us realise we need to experiment with other ways of either preserving the soil or a different medium as with the timescale given until our hand in, this structure will not survive.

Media Exploration

With the time scale between making, photographing and handing our final piece in, we realised there was a huge issue with the soil crumbling and drying out, so we had to find a different medium.

Q. What’s brown, crumbly but moist, and holds it’s shape when cut..?

A. Cake!

We decided to bake a chocolate cake as it was the most common looking material we could find in comparison so soil. We were worried it would look too clean cut and perfect, as well as looking too much like cake, but it was more successful than we had hoped for and will be how we create our final letter.


So far our ‘T’ was only hand drawn and didn’t actually apply to a typeface. We have begun to analyse differnt fonts to see which ‘T’ would or wouldn’t suit our piece and why.

Myiad Pro is a san-sarif typeface used by Adobe Systems. With the link between our letter and the Adobe book, we thought a typeface from Adobe would give a deeper meaning and link further with our word.


Myriad Pro


Helvetica is one of the most popular typefaces in the world. Technically speaking, it’s a sans serif Grotesque typeface. With everyone recognising it, it could make our ‘T’ visually pleasing and familiar.

Arial Black is a sans-serif slab font. This means the stem and the arm of this ‘T’ are equally characterized by a thick and block-like form. We feel this may be best for our letter as when photographed at an angle, the arm was lost, but with an equal and bold font it would stand strong at all angles.

Times New Roman

Arial Black


Times New Roman is a serif font and also very popular and well known. Our thoughts have panned into a serif font as we hadn’t considered it until this point. However, quite quickly we are finding flaws of using a serif font. With our word being turf, we want it to look as if we dug it up. If we were using a shovel it would be blocked, bold and without an initial serif.

1 Typography as a Semiotic Resource.

“ � Task Two

Produce an A6 postcard with the image on one side and a brief description of word on the other. Resources: InDesign, Photoshop, Layout and pre-print specification.


Our postcard had to show a link between our letter and typography. So we went searching on the topic of ‘artificial’ due to the nature of our astro-turf.

Digital Typgraphy & Artificial Intelligence [Adobe and the Dutch Type Library.] This book decribes how digital typography influenced type design and text layout, changing font production and text composition in their entirety. Modern and digital text composition is fast and instant, unlike handmade letterpress. This is equally comparative to astro-turf and how once laid, it is instantly there, fast but not perminant. ‘I want a computer to do all the tedious parts of the type design process for me and have one or two beers outside in the meantime, before adding the finishing touches to the deisgn and signing it” [Dr. Knuth.]

Digital Typography and Artificial Turf. (Digital Typography and Artificial Intelligence.)

“I want a computer to do all the tedious parts of the type design process for me and have one or two beers outside in the meantime, before adding the finishing touches to the design and signing it.” - Dr. Knuth.

To simpy look at the layout we have produced an example using our mock up photo of our final ‘T’. After another crit, we were told to allign the paragraph with the end of the arm of the ‘T’, as before the font and ‘T’ appeared as two unlinked objects. We like the angle of our mockup photo and how it fits with the text so wil lconsider this when we photograph our final image in the studio ready for the postcard production.

Final Photography

In the studio we photographed our final ‘T’ which will gives us an image for our final postcard.

The light in the studio was incredibly artificial and not correct for photography, which caused the images to have tangent light. I have edited them in raw, changing the white balance and levels but I am still not happy with how they have turned out, so will go back into the final one and change the colour balance to reduce the yellow tinge further. The first image (top right) isn’t fully infocus, and although I considered it would draw the viewer towards the text, it just looks like a poor photography. The second image (bottom right) is angled too much is our final image. We like the angle and it leaves a perfect space for our quote. I will however edit it further as it is too yellow and needs cyan tones to level it out.

Digital Typography and Artificial Turf. (Digital Typography and Artificial Intelligence.)

“I want a computer to do all the tedious parts of the type design process for me and have one or two beers outside in the meantime, before adding the finishing touches to the design and signing it.� - Dr. Knuth.

1 Typography as a Semiotic Resource.

“ ” Task Three

This unit begins with a visit to Poole where you will identify, collect and photograph, examples of vernacular letterforms in the town. Your images could be literal interpretations of details of road signs, hand painted signs, neon signs, fragments of words, individual characters, manhole covers, gravestones or shop-front signs. Documenting these typographic havens is crucial to rebuff the constant threat from planners and councils that choose to subvert local history and ignore the rich traditions of vernacular heritage. Alternatively, you could choose to record a slightly more challenging abstract collection of ‘hidden signs’ drawn from architectural forms, found objects, and unintentional typographic structures.

Initial Photography

As a group we spend the day in Poole wondering the streets and alleys to find interesting and abstract typographic forms.

We visited the main high street but decided it was too obvious a place to be looking for type, we didn’t want to focus on ready made signs, and wanted a more hands on approach. Given this we began to head towards the harbour, heading down any backstreet we could find, looking at grafiti, brick work, road markings and the negative space formed between looking up down each alley.

At first we considered splitting the alphabet between each of us, electing ourselves with a different set of letters. This is something we realised wouldn’t give our book a very diverse feel as we each had our own way of working, and figured it would show throughout the book as if there was a chapter change at each certain stage where we split.

Here are a few samples of the images I personally took. As you can see I was heading for the more abstract approach of making type from negative spacing and objects, rather than looking at signs and shopfronts.

Edited Images

Using Bridge we narrowed down the images, disregarding any images that were poorly photographed or simply not visually appealing in a way that we had hoped for.

In photoshop I edited all the images, making sure those that would be appearing on pages together or opposite eachother had a similar tone or colour pallette, giving them the ability to work together, making our book having a visual flow and consistancy. When selecting our images before editing, not only did we focus on images that were successful, we also tried to make it as fair as possible by including images we had all taken, keeping it as a group effort.

Book Binding

Our books were binded using the ‘French Fold’ method which would guarentee that no ink bled through the paper ruining the image behind. After waiting, we reopened the press, pushing the pages to one side, and applying another layer of glue, doing so in both directions. Our images were printed on A3 sheets and we firstly had to fold each page in half, matching up the cropping marks. Using a boning tool we created the perfect crease in our fold. After folding we placed the paper into the ‘Lumbeck Press’, tightening it and making sure all the pages were flush. To the top we applied the firsy later of archival PVA glue and left to dry for 15 minutes.

After waiting another 15 minutes we glued a strip of mull to the spine of the book and left to dry over night. All that was left now was to glue on the cover. Once glued we cut it down, and the completed book is ready!

Final Book

Overall our final book was incredibly successful and I’m proud of each of our efforts. I was worried we wouldn’t all agree with a layout as we all viewed images differently but combining our ideas worked well.

Our only issues with the book was the layout of the double page spreads. The first few are quite perfect, but for some reason we managed to not get the later ones so precise and they don’t match up as well as they should do.

1 Typography as a Semiotic Resource.

“ � Task Four

Each person to produce one portrait A2 poster to promote the book. Resources: InDesign, Photoshop, Layout and pre-print specification.

Promotional Poster

This task was removed from our initial brief but I had an idea for it so figured I should go ahead and create a poster reguardless as posters and layout are something I feel I need more practise with.

This book documents examples of vernacular letterforms that have been identifed, collected and photographed in the town of Poole. This images very from literal interprestations of details of road signs, shopfront signs, etc all the way to slightly more challening abstract collections of ‘hidden signs’ drawn from architectural forms, found objects and unintentional typographic structures. As a collaborative effort, four BA(hons) Graphic Design

students from the Arts University at Bournemouth have worked together, combinging their ideas and techniques to produce a diverse book that will open your mind to the typographic world around you. Taking a mainly abstract approach, you will begin to realise the beauty of type that is under your feet and looked passed every day. Next time you walk the streets, look up, look down, there is far more to see and learn than your standard eye level view/ Focus on the negative space in and around objects, structors and general forms, there’s more to see than you may think, and once you’ve trained your eye to understand this technique, it is something that will stick with you for a lifetime.

1 Typography as a Semiotic Resource.

[ ] Workshops

As well as set tasks, you will be expected to sign up to at least three workshops of your choice, Organised by Graphic Design, Fine Art, Illustration and Visual Communication.

Word & Image Fine Art - 10/01/14

In this seminar-workshop we will look at how artists and designers have explored the interaction between words and images, and how others have developed theories about how this relationship operates. Whenever we put words and images together the effects of one upon the other can often be both complex and subtle, we will explore this.

Symbol Index Signified by contiguity. (eg. foot prints in the sand somesome has been there.)

Icon Signified by resemblance. (eg. vector graphic looking like/ resembling William Shakespear.)

Signified by intellectual operations. (eg. traffic lights - we understand what each colour communicates.)

The task we were given during our workshop was to create a news paper front page that reflected ourselves, using images and typography cut out from other news papers. I have to admit I did not find this educational or helpful in anyway. Along with a few others, we felt this was a waste of time and would not be a technique that could benefit us further during our course. This is my outcome (right) and as you can see it doesn’t look like it could be beneficial to me in the future. I did however have come interest in the short lecture we had before hand which helped refresh my memory on key words such as index, icons and symbols.

Traditional Letterpress Visual Communication - 14/02/14

I had infact signed up to Non-Traditional Letterpress, but when we arrived the lecturer decided she wanted to show us Traditional Letterpress instead. I ‘m actually really glad that changed happened as I really enjoyed what we did.

We began looking at different sizes and types of letterpress, and were given the task of picking two or thress letters/symbols that we liked to go print. Together we created a piece of all our letters and learnt how to lock them still using magnets. After mixing the ink (the same way you would with screen printing) we inked up the rollers and began to print. Later on we created phrases of our own with small metal type, these were locked down in a different way by using ‘Quoins.’ (Quoins are clamps used to lock type into place within a frame.) We added more paper onto the roller to increase the pressure of the print, this enabled us to have an embossed effect to our printed type.

My final print (right) was more embossed than our lecturer liked her prints to be, but all four of us Graphics students prefered it this way, so it was interesting to see what different courses influenced you, and I still stand

by liking it deeply embossed. Not only was this workshop interesting, but I feel I have learnt a skill that will benefit my work on this course, and it is definitly a technique that I will be using again when a project fits.

Chromophilia FIne Art - 21/02/14

Colour is one of the most potent and important communicative elements available to the artist/ designer. Via a mixture of practice and theory, and using Josef Albers ‘Interaction of Colour’ as basis, we will look at how colours interact, and how colour might be deployed in order to best express our ideas.

I was given the task of using a ‘limited colour pallette’ (red, yellow ocher, slate blue, black and white) to fill in shapes which I had created by later the latters ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ on a large scale. I felt this task was rather like ‘Paint by Numbers’ you would do as a child and knew I wouldn’t find much enjoyment from it.

After finishing the tedious task, I scraped off the excess paint and actually really liked the mess that was left behind. Weirdly the lecturer agreed with me, and we figured it was due

to the colours I had mixed complimenting eachother perfectly.


( ) Lectures

As well as signing up to workshops, you will be expected to attend at least three lectures of your choice, Organised by Graphic Design, Fine Art, Ilustration and Visual Communication.

Digital Materiality

Key elements explored will be: modes of production and obsolescence; gaming and play as forms of labour; the ethics of global digital interactivity; social media; image as information; electronic civil disobedience [hacking; wikileaks]; analogue and digital; computational contexts.

FIne Art - 13/01/14

We explore the history, development and pervasiveness of the digital today. The focus is on the materiality of the digital as we attempt to dispel the myth of virtuality and disembodiment. How might such notions be unhelpful in discussions of digital practice?

Key texts:

Lecture Notes: Invisible labour texting.

used a wartime radar screen.

1960’s play achieved last free status - pure, childlike, innocent, art.

The internets success is apparent continuity, conceals it down mechanisms and workings, shameless interface, 404 error, illustion of continuity being broken. From passive to active.

1990’s internet - grid goes, cecosytem, playful enterities. Play has become labourious , game interfaces look like Microsoft Office. The internet was an idea created from anxiety concerning nuclear attacks, the first desk top

40% of technologial waste is shopped to China, Asia.

Alex Galloway This Internet As Factor And Play. Fritz Land Metropolis. Carsten Holler Test Site Art And Play. Deleuze And Guattari Anti Oedipus: Capitalism And Schizophrenia. Stanza Capacities. Jodie Coyne Cyberspace And Virtuality.


Key elements explored will be: The lecture seeks to examine the ways in which transmedia is a useful concept for exploring ideas such as audience and interaction, performativity, storytelling, media affordances; and how it may be useful for understanding and developing contemporary media practices in the digital era.

Illustration - 13/01/14

This lecture explores the concept of transmedia and its application to a range of visual and media practices. It examines the ways in which the term is currently defined and used by a range of contemporary theorists, and how the concept builds upon previous notions such as intertextuality, remix culture, and postproduction. It also draws upon the concept of the Gutenberg Parenthesis which seeks to examine the extent to which contemporary cultural and media practices can be seen to be reverting to a pre-Gutenberg form in which relationships between textual objects become more fluid, and notions of ownership and defined authorship start to break down.

Lecture Notes: Transmedia different channels of communiction contributing in one way to tell a story. (eg. The Matrix - films, comics, games, animations.) Monomedia book, spoken words, image, music. Interpretation/ Adaptation remaking one media product into another, (book to film.) Multimedia combination of mediums working together.

Non-commercial Transmedia folk story telling. First internet myth - Slander Man. Connection of multiple texts eg. The Matrix; white rabbit, Alice in Wonderland, Room 101, 1984. Perform activity is key in the latter media: Star Wars, Bobs Fett action figure generated customer interest, giving pressure to have a larger plot focus in future films.

Key texts: Nine Inch Nails iwanttobelieve. com The Gutenberg Parenthesis. Jenkins 2006. Fagerjord 2010. Bob National.

Notion Of Taste Graphic Design - 20/01/14

This session explores our relationship with objects and how we respond to and give value to ‘things’ and how our aesthetic judgements and purchase decisions relate to consumer culture. The session considers the phenomenon of consumption and notions of style, luxury, memory etc. in relation to bespoke and the mass produced items. It considers the thoughts of Baudrillard, Veblen, the Frankfurt School and Klein.

In particular this session interrogates hierarchies of taste and popular culture and questions what factors determine what we consider to be good and bad taste and how the value of things can create social and cultural identities. The session will utilise design examples from AUB’s Museum of Design in Plastic (MoDiP) and wider ‘things’ (notably those often identified as kitsch).

Lecture Notes: Our relationship to objects and how we respond to and give value to things. How our aesthetic judgments and aesthetic purchase decisions relate to consumer culture. Taste derives from old French term, to touch or to feel, metaphor for judgement.

Interior identity of an individual. Cultural Cosumption cultural preference, social taboo. Redundancy is designed into industry. Kitsch crap, rubbish, junk. Memory, sentimentaity.

Key texts: www.coolhunting. com www.inhabital. com/art Less Is More Van Der Rohe Forms Follows Function Bauhaus.


Lecture Notes: Propoganda power and persuation.

Graphic Design - 27/01/14

Subconscious manipulation, campaign, biased imagery.

What it is, why it exists and how it operates - through consideration of historical and in particular contemporary examples from across a range of dynamic, dramatic and diverse contexts and channels of communication. The session examines key issues - notions of mass manipulation; spin; persuasion and control - in relation to propaganda examples including visual, aural and ariel examples and digital and guerrilla methods. This provocative session will question how we encounter propaganda today including Animal Rights, political campaigns, war reportage and news stories. The power of persuasion is to be explored and the session will question the role of social media in contemporary propaganda experiences.

Information to assit or damage the cause of a government or movement. The spreading of ideas, information, or rumour for the purpose of helping or injuring an instituation, a cause or a person. Ideas, facts, or allegations spread deliberately to further ones cause or to damage an opposing cause, also, a public action having such an effect. Propogate: Black artificial lies. White comes from a source, can be edivenced. Grey some facts but can be questionable, half true, unreliable.

Distortion; Denvor airport Mural, lowest suicides, highest sunshine hours, apocalyptic soldier, gas mask, horse fell of sculptor, killed, land mass, fewer runways, underground bunkers, British links. Cover up: False flag horrific images, similar attacks in the same day, whitnesses don’t match, conflicting evidence, war excuse. Repetition.

Key texts: Power and Persuation David Welch. Manufacturing Consent Noam Chomsky. Body Horrors John Taylor.



Berlin Trip

Germany/Berlin was never a place I would have considered visiting until this trip. After spending five amazing days there, I will definitly be taking myself back and there was so much more to do and see that we just didn’t have the time to do!

On our trip we went to such places as the Memorial for the Jews of Europe, The Berlin Wall, The Bauhaus, Erik Spiekermanns Studio, Hamburger Bahnhof, Brandenburg Gate and finished our visit off the spending the night up the Television Tower (Fernsehturm.) It has opened up my eyes to so many beautiful things, whether they are historical, cultural or artistic, and I can’t wait to go back and explore some more. Visiting Spiekermann was also an amazing experience, seeing the environment I could be working in in the future and how they work, it has really given me a push to work hard and aim to get there.





You will undertake organising, creating and promoting a one day exhibition which will be titled ‘For The Love Of Graphics.’ This exhibition gives you a chance to show case what you love about Graphic Design, as well as allowing you to show your organisiation skills as this will be completely self led, with no help or influence from staff.


For The Love Of Graphics

Our exhibiton was a complete success, almost everyone participated and it was organised really well. It was really interesting to see what each person/group loved about design, and what collections they had exhibited.

I started the money idea on my own but after asking around found another person to contribute to make it larger and more interesting. We thought of several ways to exhibit the money and decided using a gradient was the most effective. Putting them in numerical or order was least effective as it looked like there was no balance or coordination linking them together at all.

Money Notes hold beautiful designs that we look past everyday without a thought or second look. Here we have displayed notes from around the world, including Australia, Hong Kong and Africa. Some are in circulation while others are outdated, but we found it interesting how each country leaves their distinctive graphic mark, as well as the difference in shape, colour and scale.

Visual Thinking - BA(hons) Graphic Design  

This Workbook incorporates my thoughts and processes throughout each unit as well as images of my models and any other outcomes from worksho...

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