Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Collection 100 Research Proposal

My subject matter is:
Childrens toys, particularly traditional and established toys

Possible categories will include:
Material, colour, audience, educational

Research processed will include:
Primary: Questionnaire, survey and interview towards parents, different age groups and  toy shop owners to find out what toys are established/trusted and remembered and why. Secondary: Museum, internet and library research to find out about different types of toys.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

What If... Self Evaluation

What problem did you identify?
Rough sleepers lack awareness of where they can obtain health/medical care.

What evidence did you find to support your decisions?
I found out that 60.7% of people questioned thought Homelessness was a problem in their city of residence and when questioned, the general public assume drug and alcohol issues are a primary cause of homelessness. My questionnaire also told me that 80.8% of people walk on by when they see a homeless person and many have negative feelings such as sad and sorry for them. This research was all towards finding out if homelessness was a problem and not specifically targeted at the heath care. I found out a centre where rough sleepers can receive heath/medical care in Leeds from the internet.

What methods did you use to gather your evidence and what forms did it take?
I created a Questionnaire (linked on a Facebook page) which gave the group qualitative and quantitative primary research. This was achieved by using both open and closed questions and gave us statistics and opinions.

I also bought a few newspapers to gather any news on the subject which gave us qualitative secondary research.

I also carried out some internet research, collecting statistics and facts, a form of secondary quantitative research.

What methods of research did you find useful and why?
I think all methods of research were useful at collecting different types of information. Primary research is good as you can direct it in the way most useful to your study. Secondary is often quicker, but often I found the information was older and so things may have changed. Qualitative and quantitative worked well together in our research. Our qualitative often backed up our quantitative and we could use them both equally to inform our final resolution.

How did these inform your response to your problem?
The qualitative research gave us the knowledge that our problem was in fact a problem in Leeds, and our quantitative research gave us the facts and figures in order for us to tackle it.

What methods did you encounter as problematic?
Aiming the final resolution was problematic as it was a new audience that none of us had tackled before. We didn't want to sound patronising with our language or simple design, but we did want to make something which would be to the point and be clear it was aimed at the homeless.

How did you overcome this?
We discussed how we could best make the design more suitable for the audience and decided to keep it simple as our message was a simple one. We didn't need to add any unimportant information. We used a green cross in place of a letterform to represent "doctor" and used only 2 colours. We also decided upon a graffiti stencil approach for our design instead of a poster/mailshot etc... I thought that posters are normally a tool used to promote or advertise something to a consumer audience, completely different to our audience. Something real and permanent in their environment would be more effective and we even thought about location and positioning of the graffiti stencil to maximise opportunity of it being seen and taken note of by rough sleepers.

What research could you have carried out that would have proved more useful?
It would have been really useful if we could of spoke to a homeless person or rough sleeper and got their insight into the problem. Maybe there was a bigger issue in the minefield of homelessness that only they truely know about?

Five things you have learnt about the design process over the last two weeks...
  1. Research is great. It can make or break your design and brief. Knowing the importance of the different types of research helped us develop our design. If we only had quantitative, we would of got nowhere and vice versa.
  2. Posters are not the answer to everything. They may look pretty (sometimes)... but do they really work?
  3. Design is not just about something looking pretty. We used it to try and tackle a real life problem and feel like we did alright. 
  4. Communication can often be less is more. We knew what we needed to communicate and why... nothing more needed.
  5. It is a 26 minute walk to Leeds PCT from the underpass near Woodhouse Lane Carpark.
Five things you would do differently next time.
  1. Contribute more to the final design. I don't feel like I created enough initial designs.
  2. Stay in College if I have work to do... instead of going home with the intention of doing it but then watching Shameless and eating biscuits.
  3. Let others take the lead. I feel like I took a main role in the decision making again and would really like to know if that helped or hindered the project. 
  4. Refine my presentation skills.
  5. Save InDesign files!

Sunday, 22 November 2009

OUGD101 Self Evaluation

What practical skills have you developed through this module and how effectively do you think you have applied them?
I have learnt more about the printroom and how to effectively use my time in response to a brief. I have learnt how to develop my ideas better and get a better final piece because of this. I think I applied these beBoldst in the "No News Is Good News" brief.

What approaches to/methods of problem solving have you developed and how have they informed your design development process?
I have developed my research methods by using books and internet. Also through crits I have learnt that hearing responses is helpful, but sometimes it is better to go with your gut feeling, but take constructive critism.

What strengths can you identify in your work and how have/will you capitalise on these?
I think my strength lies in digital design and I enjoy it the most. In future I would like to try and get bette at hand drawn designs but I'm sure I will always resolve to use digital where appropriate.

What weaknesses can you identify in your work and how will you address these more fully?
I need to think of more ideas and develop these to find the best one. Also to think more simply and develop what will deliver a message most effectively.

Identify 5 things that you will do differently next time and what do you exoect to gain from doing these?
  1. Generate more initial ideas as the final resolution may be better
  2. Think about colour usage as my message will appear clearer if I use appropriate colours.
  3. Make more effort in group work and not get so frustrated, we may produce something better with more co-operation.
  4. Research more thoroughly, who, what, why and how?
  5. Never use a pencil again and begin to love black tips =(
Are there any things we could have done differently that would have benefitted your progress?
Maybe tell us why we were doing some tasks so we could get more out of them, such as on the coloured paper tasks for no news is good news. But saying that, I have learn alot from this short time of being on this course so I can really say anything bad!

Friday, 20 November 2009

OUGD101 No News Is Good News "Mailshot" (Evaluation)

In this evaluation I wasn't showing my work to Fred or Amber, but to an industry professional. This was good to get someone elses views on our work. He was very positive about everyones work which was nice to hear as it was a bit too late to make many changes if we had of done loads wrong anyway!

The only things he mentioned with mine is that there was no return address which was a good point. To be honest, I wish that there was some points to work on as 'm sure there are some other things I have missed which would make it better. I am very happy with what I have produced however. It is the first piece on this course that I would be happy to put my name to!

Monday, 16 November 2009

OUGD101 No News Is Good News "Mailshot" (Group Crit)

We had a group crit on how we were getting on with out Mailshots. I found the group crit very positive and some good points were made.

  • Good how its for teachers to show children and the way it pulls out of the envelope is fun so its very appealing, yet facts about Titanic children wont be able to relate to so its about target audience.
  • What materials are you using? What will happen to the envelope when it is opened?
  • Colours? Other ideas on envelope format.
  • Works well. Like the way in which it folds out. Good that you're including written info too to give it some context. Front of envelope?
  • Look and choose facts to be used.
  • Develop envelope (front)
  • Colours the same as used in poster.
  • Inner "sea" ill stay in envelope... this pulls out and is attached to the inside of the envelope.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

OUGD101 No News Is Good News "Poster" (Evaluation)

3 people in my class evaluated my 3 No News Is Good News posters. Here is their feedback...

What statement/fact/question is being communicated to you?
1. What else is underwater? More than 1%, grammar isn't very good.
2. I don't know. I think it is saying only 1% of ocean floors have been surveyed, but the sentance on the poster doesn't read correctly. My first thought was maybe a spelling mistake "ever" instead of "never".
3. I am unsure if the symbol is less than or more than! So not everyone will understand this. From the statement do you mean "never" been explored or have we only explored 1% of the ocean?
Yep, after checking I did get the symbol wrong! But the spelling of ever is correct, going from the article is states "Less than 1% of the world's ocean floors have ever been surveyed".

Is this being communicated in a clear and focused way? What could be developed further?
1. No. Strength of wording and research into correct symbol use.
2. No. Just the sentence structure. Visually I think it looks really good' the layout is good, simple but eye-catching. I also like the large use of type.
3. No. The wording on the statement. Also "What else is undiscovered underwater? What was the first thing? Very confusing mixed messages.
To me it is quite clear, however I know the background to the posters and they must work without the background to be effective. I should possibly get rid of the question "What else is undiscovered?" as this is causing confusion.

Have the posters been kept "simple and to the point"? Is a statement, fact or question being posed?
1. Yes. Fact - use of figures suggests use of a fact.
2. Yes. A question which is followed by a fact. This is because there is a statistic written (%).
3. No. Very simple but not grasping the point. It isn't clear what the article was about. I think they are getting a statement across yet confused with what it is.
My posters weren't really about the story of the article which was about a lost city and was more about the fact we don't know what is really underwater, a quote from my article. I don't really understand what 3. means.

Has the restriction of two colours plus stock been met? Are the two colours plus stock appropriate? Why?
1. Yes. Yes. Black and white has high impact upon suitable colour for subject.
2. Yes. Yes. The blue "stock" is appropriate ti the ocean and the black and white keeps it simple and bold. I think any other colour would have been too busy and made it uneasy to read.
3. Yes. Yes. Appropriate colour blue for the ocean. The white % sign is very clear which is effective. I believe the black in blue also looks clear.

Do the posters work as a set or series? Why and could they be developed further?
1. Yes. Similar consistent images work well, with subtle variations yet effective. The alignment to the stroke of the 1 is a nice detail. I think the >1% should be in the same place.
2. Yes. Same illustration and typography also colour scene makes it obvious they belong together.
3. Yes. They defiantly work as a series. Yet the image along doesn't say anything about the statement very unclear what the message is of a fish in the ocean is meant to reflect. It looks lonely, maybe they have all dies? Pollution from the boat?
I will develop using the >1% in the same place if I keep it in and am happy 1. picked up on the alignment. Think I need to make it clear that the small fish in the large space of ocean seen represents the statement of "Less than 1% of the world's ocean floors have ever been surveyed". Possibly need to think about making it more about this and less about the city/boat.

Is it clearly evident which poster is type, image and type/image?
1. Yes.
2. This is clear however I think the type only poster the >1% could be slightly smaller as it looks almost image like as it takes over most of the space.
3. Yes.
I will experiment with making the >1% smaller and see what works best.

Are the posters "memorable, immediate high impact and clear"?
1. Text has main impact and then imagery and layout support.
2. I think the colour scheme makes them memorable and also they illustration. If you were to see them all in separate places, you would recognise them as a set. The simplicity makes them clear and stand out. I think they are fairly high impact in the way the colours are sharp and bold.
3. The posters are memorable and have effective visuals the colours work just a pity I am unsure of the article and what the posters are trying to display. The image poster alone gives mixed messages and I don't know you begin to think of ideas from the high rise buildings which would lead you to believe the pollution from the busy city and one lonely fish.
I will try taking out the buildings as these were in to show the distinction between sea and land. I thought I needed the city in to show the sea was sea! However I think the waves are enough of a trigger and the city may be giving the wrong message.

Do you feel the brief has been fulfilled to its full potential?
1. N/A
2. Unsure. I do really like these! Its just because I couldn't make sense of the message. This is the only thing I would change, just so it makes sense to a wider audience. I really like the little fish too!
3. No.
Now looking back I don't think it fulfills the brief! I am definitely going to do some tweeking and makes them communicate my fact better.


After this crit I thought more about how I could make my design better and communicate the message more effectively. I took on board the comments made and thought more from the perspective of my audience. Here is my final design...

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

OUGD101 Alphabet Soup "Ross Allman" (Feedback)

On Monday, we got feedback from other people on the course about the Alphabet Soup project. My alphabet was supposed to represent Ross Allman and here is what Niall and Kirsty had to say...

By actually manipulating the typeface, making counters a thin line and the type becomes blocky being bold and boisterous along with the colours chosen. Illustration for the mouths works really well.

The colour is really strong, but because there is not a definite colour, it doesn't work when put together. Colour doesn't look angry, maybe all should be red for example.

Could try black and white - would still be bold and would look all suited and conformed

I agree with Nialls comments on my work and am going to look at the colours again over the next week or so and will definitely be trying out his idea of red and black.

The final typeface portrays Ross' loud, boisterous personality in the way you have manipulated the counters as if the letters are expanding and the mouths are shouting.

Limited research/development work, but not all is here. Doesn't capture his anger in the colour.

The colour of the final letters could have been brighter to show his personality more in your face. Could have researched more into photographing different expressions and then drawing from them, sound/frequency.

Again I agree with some of Kirstys comments, I didn't even think about photographing or using different expressions, I focussed more on the shout. I may develop this and give it a go... Also she picks up on a good point about limited research. I forgot all of my development stuff, I only had my sketchbook which included 2 pages worth of initial ideas, none of which I used!

OUGD101 Alphabet Soup "Compress" (Evaluation)

Jonny Finch evaluated my Compress piece, here is what he had to say...

What is being communicated and how?
The word being communicted is compress. This has been done filling the negative space around each letterform with crushed cans.

How well does this answer the brief?
The final piece answers the brief well as it communicates the word instantly. There could however have been slightly too much focus on the cans around the letterform rather than the actual style of letter.

How well has the idea been visually explored?
The idea has been well managed and methodically thought through with clear thoughts on layout and materials. I also like the subtle things like the placement of each letter at the bottom of the page like it has been crushed there.

What are the strengths of the resolution?
The main strength is the final resolution as it quickly communicates what it is meant to. In terms of a weakness I would like to have seen some more experimental early approaches in the research stage.

How could it be improved?
One way I feel it could be improved is by changing or tweaking the white letters as it is a little harsh against the colour of the cans.

General comments...
I really like the overall body of work and the final resolution does exactaly what it is meant to by communication the word compress quickly and effectively.

I agree with Jonnys comments overall and will try and work more on the development of my ideas and think about the final outcome in terms of finishing touches as I am not too happy with the quality of my final piece and should probably tested the print on other materials first.

Sunday, 11 October 2009

OUGD101 Alphabet Soup "Ross Allman" (Crit)

The four words I chose to represent were loud, boisterous, leader and angry. I explored these through searching for imagery and felt that a shouting mouth would represent them all pretty well. I also used capitol and bold letterforms to help show the boisterous characteristics.

Arial Black was a typeface that Ross selected as one of his favourites. I decided to use this over the others he supplied me as I believed this could be easily manipulated, yet still be recognisable. It is quite a simple font and I think it was an appropriate choice as I could alter the anatomy of the letterforms effectively.

I went through some different ideas before settling on my thoughts of representing a "shouting" typeface through the development in my sketchbook. I originally started thinking about what Ross likes, however then realised that I wasn't answering the brief. I have combined a few different designs for my final idea, but tweaked them slightly so they work well together and as a typeface.

From the Crit I had on Friday, I have a few more things to develop/think about further before I present my final piece at the end of the week. The Crit was really helpful and pointing out strengths and weaknesses with my design. I am going to experiment with different colour mediums such as marker pens and acrylic paint. I am also going to experiment with clashing colours, to further portray the angry characteristic suggested by Ross. I am also going to think about my presentation techniques and the layout of the alphabet. I could possibly link the letters together or give them more personality with the way the are positioned on the page. I am also going to develop different ideas for the name badge, such as which paper and possibly alternative colours.

Tuesday, 29 September 2009

OUGD101 How To... (Evaulation)

I took on a few different roles within our group. I was involved with the initial ideas of the "Make Tea Not War" concept and developed this further with the group. I also produced the tags for the tea bags with the copy provided to me by another member of our team. One evening I designed the stickers which appear on the Mugs and bought the tea for our presentation. On the final day my main role was to organise the group and help with time management, as well as presenting our design to the rest of the course.

My performance was quite good for this project I think. I got annoyed when one of our team walked out, however I believe that I worked better without his negative energy. On the final day I may have been a bit too bossy towards the group, but I think we needed someone to take a role which organised the team. I could of had more of a design impact in this task if I had of spent more time developing my ideas and though more creatively towards our audience and the "How To..." issue.

Our group did not work very well together at the beginnings, however once one team member had walked out we worked so much better and became more productive. Once we had established who could do what in the team, we worked well together.

A positive of working in a group was the aspect of everyone having different strengths and weaknesses. I am not too good at illustration, but there was someone else who was. We tried to use everyones strengths to create our final design. A lot of aspects of this project, I could not have achieved if it was an individual project.

A definite negative of working in a group was the difficulty of getting on with everyone and not making some people feel neglected. I found it a task to try and be professional towards one person in the team due to their childish manner and maybe I dwelled on this too much and let it eat into the time I could have spent designing.

Next time I have a brief to complete, I aim to improve my time management and develop my ideas in my own free time, as well as that is timetabled. Also it would be good if I could gather more of my own research to help with my initial concept on how to complete a brief.

I believe our presentation could have been better. Our tea making idea took a lot of time and I don't believe out audience made the connection so I felt the need to explain. The digital presentation didn't work which was a real bummer. It would of made the presentation a bit more interesting if our audience had a visual aid alongside the verbal explanation... but we carried on without it without letting it affect us.

Overall I was quite happy with the result that the group produced and I have definitely learnt that working in a group is a difficult task, however you can achieve more than you could on your own as you can draw from others strengths.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

10 things...

Graphic Design is my passion. I realise that I need to learn how to become a designer who is confident with their work and proud of the result achieved. I am excited and chuffed to be a Leeds Art student and am determined to give my best this year and take on board all the comments from staff and fellow students.

10 things I wish to achieve this year in relation to the BA (Hons) Graphic Design course are...
  1. Printmaking -
    I am extremely interested in Printmaking. At the minute, my dream Graphics Career would be to be involved in a Creative Journal such as Creative Review or Eye. I would love to learn how to produce my own versions of these and experiment with different printing methods/papers/letterpress/emboss.

  2. AV -
    Audio Visual is one of my weak points currently. Stop motion animation has always interested me and I would be really keen to produce my own short film/advertisement. The process is alien to me and I would welcome to opportunity to learn more about the video world.

  3. Method -
    My working method is pretty rubbish at the moment... I get a brief and I start cracking with it. Once I feel I have an alright idea, I just go with it. By the end of the year I want to be able to realise I need to explore my ideas further before I rush straight into a shoddy design and be able to confidently say why one idea is better than another.

  4. Exhibitions -
    Leeds is a great city, and I have already been to an Art GAllery. Even though I wasn't too keen on most of the Art in there, it gave me an idea of what design I don't like. I believe this is just as important as knowing what you do like. Hopefully by attending more exhibitions and talk by industry professionals I can gain a better understanding of the designer I want to become.

  5. Like/Dislike -
    Currently I like and dislike some designs, but I cannot communicate why. I wish to improve this and understand why I like some images/typefaces better than others to aid my personal development.

  6. Team Player -
    I am used to working on a project on my own and discussing my designs with a team of people. Working as a team will be a whole new concept, and I believe a particularly hard one for me. I really hope to improve my team skills and produce designs that I am happy with and have had equal input.

  7. Software -
    InDesign is currently my programme of choice. I have used it for around 18 months now pretty much everyday and I am comfortable with it. I need to realise that not every brief will fit into a leaflet/poster/editorial. I must branch out and experiment more with new softwares. I would really like to learn Dreamweaver as the internet is so accessible, it would be a great tool to have that knowledge.

  8. Critical -
    Constructive criticism is always welcome. I must learn how to be critical of my own work, but not just "Ew, I don't like that" and to be more questioning why I don't like something and give a reason so I know what the actual problem is.

  9. Boundaries -
    Push to boundaries, think outside the box, the world is not just black and white... By second year I really would like to be able to be more experimental. I don't want to leave Leeds Art with just a basic knowledge and a boring portfolio. I am a creative person, so I hope to let me creativity free!

  10. Mistakes -
    A big part of the first year of this course is making mistakes. I must not try and get everything perfect... but to try new things and be a bit more daring... this is bound to result in mistakes. I will not be afraid of mistakes, but I will welcome them and learn from them.