With the year now coming to an end, it is time to look over the past type projects and the progress made since them.
The projects listed for my type portfolio consist of the following:
- The Solar-Flare Zine
- The Book Cover
- The Ethics Poster
- The Environment Spread
- The Punctuation Mark
- And the Type Logo
Throughout this year, we have had a wide variety of type based project place before us, each with their own tasks and hurdles. I can currently say that this area of work within this portfolio has possibly been my most successful work up until this point in time, as almost every piece has turned out to become, in some form or another, something which I can be proud of.
The Zine project was a fairly new task to me as it required me to work within a small group of people, all of whom were banned from using any form of digital device for the creation of 20 page magazine based within the ruins of a solar apocalypse. Each member was given the task to create 4-5 pages using whatever non digital method they could find. I found the task itself rather interesting due to its practical limitations and in how we would have to communicate heavily in order to create an effective piece due to the project mostly taking place across a reading week away. I am quite happy with how most of the
Today we have finally finished the design for our group poster, and are ready to begin its printing.
By the end of the projects design, there were of course some minor (and/or major) changes within its overall appearance and function. Some of my animal sketches (i.e. fox, standing rabbit and badger) were sadly left out of the poster due to us having some trouble fitting all of them into the spaces around the text. I am happy however that most of them did successfully make it into the final product, as well as how surprisingly well they combined with other features of the poster, such as how one of the birds nicely sits on top of a stump created by another member of the team.
I also decided to keep not while creating this poster on the interesting techniques and styles used by my team-mates when creating this poster, so that I have them in mind should I think them fitting of being used within another project. I found Ed’s use of a texture-layered background to be a very attractive and unique design idea for the poster, and I honestly consider it the highlight of the page. I may likely decide to use this technique myself within the future, as I find that the combination of its colors and texture to be very effective within this piece.
I honestly have very little to complain about for this piece at all, as I I find it very well put together for our team. If I could complain about anything however, one of the only parts I could point at would be the resulting design of the cloud sketch, as it was heavily edited by the other team members after I handed it over to them. I am not too fond of the gradient given to the original cloud, as I feel as if it looks too out of place next to the more solid colors given to the rest of the sketches. The original idea for the cloud sketch was to make 73% of the cloud grey (with the remaining 27% white) to represent the 73% of the fact, so the gradient may have be used to make the transition between the grey/black and white smother. If the center cloud was a pure grey color with something such as a 73% placed on it, I may have found it much better looking than it does now, as well as much more effective towards showing the meaning of the sketch.
With each of us taking on different roles to create each separate aspect of the poster, we have made what I consider a successful piece of work which is both apathetically pleasing as well as effectively functional to its purpose. I am happy to have made this interesting final piece as well as been part of my team in general.
In order to increase the effectiveness and speed of our work, each of us have taken roles within the project to create specific parts of the poster. I myself along with Ben were given the task of doing many of the small illustrations which were going to be placed across the page.
Since our idea is heavily focused on the effect of the environment, we decided that that message may be reinforced by the use of forest animals to represent the environment. We first listed several animals found within (British forests (as the magazine that the poster is for is of British make)), along with a few other objects, and allowed me to choose the ones that I saw appropriate/good enough to be used for the poster. After I had chosen the animals I was given, I quickly began work on sketching each one.
I the animals that I drew consisted of: a fox, a deer, a badger, two rabbits and three birds (I did multiple versions of the last to animals as I wanted to make sure that I at least had more than one version of the smaller animals as there could be enough room to put more than one of them, and if some, I wanted to make some divergence between them.
The other members of the team were quite happy with the results of my sketches and we moved onto scanning them onto a computer so that they may be inserted into the poster. Upon putting some of the sketches into the poster’s program (InDesign) however, we found that some of them had not formed their lines in properly and were preventing us from filling them in with color. Because of this, I was forced to have to recreated the few that did not work from scratch using illustrator (due the team using InDesign, making transferring much simpler). After finishing up the new illustration for the poster, I handed them over to the rest of my team.
As one of the more interesting topics that appeared during our planning, the idea of making our poster have interactive features has been something that we have been trying to decide. Today we once again talked about the idea and have made a final decision on the subject.
We have looked at the idea for a splittable/foldable poster for a little now and we have deiced that it may be best to leave the design of the poster as it is without the interactive feature. We have chosen to make this decision as we would rather not ruin the poster’s appearance with unneeded design choices.
While having a discussion with the rest of the team, we of course brought up the point of which form/s of typeface we were going to use on our poster, as it is a very important to both our posters appearance as well as the projects overall score.
Choosing a typeface for the poster was actually much easier for us to find than I first anticipated, as a member of the team had already found an existing poster about the ethics of the environment (with a similar subject on paper as well) that used the two fonts that took our interests.
The first typeface that we chose was called Bebas Neue, which would serve as our main header/title font. We chose to use this typeface because we wanted a simple yet bold header which would easily stand out on the page and get our biggest points/phrases in the spotlight. We chose this serif-less font style as we wanted to make a simplistic poster design with a paper-like background/theme, in order to make the poster look more modern and in date.
The second typeface we selected was Helvetica, which would serve as the poster’s main typeface for the text. We selected helvetica as we wanted a similar form of type to bebas neue to be used for smaller text, but without being so bold. We also chose it as another modern looking typeface.
Overall, I find that both typefaces that we have selected look and feel very fitting for the modern/simplistic design style that we are hoping to achieve, and that it will serve as a very easy to read font for our readers to understand, as a faulty typeface for a message such as ours in real life would be quite problematic.
After having now returned to the classroom from our research break, me and the other members of the team have had a group discussion on our future and present plans for the project. We talked about the various ideas that we currently had for the poster as well as any changes that have been added since our last talk.
Our first noteable topic within the discussion was the change of title. We agreed to change the main idea of the poster from “paper consumption ethics with designers” to “paper consumption ethics” in general. We decided on this change as we realised that the idea of only doing designer ethics for paper was way too specific and because of the fact that many of us could not find any information on that topic online.
Our second topic for the poster was the idea of having the information displayed on the page be split in half, having “good” facts on one half of the page and “bad” facts on the other about paper consumption (namely within the UK as the poster will be based in this location.
Our most notable topic today was the overall design and layout of the poster in terms of interactivity, as an idea brought up by one of our members suggested the idea of having the two halves of the page be cuttable, allowing both the good and bad facts become their own separate mini-posters (I will go into further detail within a future post.
As is of our main poster topic, I have decided to do some research into use of paper within recent years, along with its various effects on the environment and daily life.
Due to the multi purpose capabilities as a resource, we have always relied on the paper we created from trees for centuries, although the heaviness of its need has somewhat dropped since the rise of email messaging. Nether the less, paper is a heavily used format for information storage, art and/or any other things a person can find useful for tasks.
However, as one would expect of any form of human resource consumption, we have often taken much more wood for paper from our many forests than they can suffice, often take several times the amount we can even replace. After looking at some statistics online, I found that over 300 million tons of paper are being produced each year. Plus, despite my previous statement of the use of digital platforms to replace the needs for printing and note taking (trying to make a paperless office/workspace), copier/printer paper and note-pad paper comprise a staggering percentage of that 300 million.
From what I have learn’t from working within this course is that understand an audience is highly important to effectively creating a design, as it determines how well you connect with them.
For this form of project however (or just our theme in general), our likely target as an audience should be everybody in the world, as the consumption and waste of paper effects everyone in one way or another. As a result of this, there is not much we really need to do in terms of designing our poster in a certain way since we do not need to aim for a select group/s.
Thanks to this, we may be able to have a little more freedom with the design since we won’t have too many limitations for designing the layout and text. The only target group that I think that we may need to look out for are children, as we cannot make the facts and information too complicated else they get confused. Getting this right is very important since children are important for getting our message across due to them still being in their learning age, and thus will carry this information into the future.
Before I can even start my research into the project, I must first familiarize myself with the subject of ethics itself, as I am unsure of whether or not I am aware of the meaning of the term, or if I am just unsure/unaware of certain aspects of the subject. So, for today, I am going to do some research about the meaning/definition of what the term “ethics” is.
Ethics (from I have learnt) is the basis of morals within philosophy, and the thoughts and mindset that a person may have when thinking about or participating in another subject. A useful quote that I found from a pair of people called Richard William Paul and Linda Elder defined ethics as “a set of concepts and principles that guide us in determining what behavior helps or harms sentient creatures”. (1)
The idea of ethics is that they are a set of principles that help define what human being consider morally right or wrong. For example, if a person started cutting down a large quantity of trees within a forest, people would consider that act to be ethically bad, as it would damage that area (or the entirety) of the forest. The act of someone donating to a charity on the over hand, is well often seen as a morally good act/choice, as it is seen as a kindhearted act.
(1) – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethics
With the begging of our new group project underway, we quickly decided to start our work off by doing mind maps of our current ideas for what we should do for our poster. While we were discussing possible ideas for our ethics theme, I began jotting down the mentioned titles and ideas that were mention by both myself and the other members of the team.
The mind map itself is shown bellow:
One of the first aspects that I myself brought up within the conversation was how big the poster would be and of what style it would be given in the end. We agreed that an A2 sized sheet would be large enough to create the target, as an example pointed out by our teacher was roughly the size of A2. The style of the poster has been chosen to be infographic. However, I am quite unsure (or cannot remember the meaning) of infographics, so I may likely need to familiarise myself with it at some point.
Next we talked about the type of ethics that we would concentrate on for our poster. After a surprisingly short bit of talking, we decided to make the poster around the ethics and morals of a graphics designer within their work, namely their use of paper, as we realized that designers within the industry would use mountains of paper for both their sketches and professional work, which can heavily effect the environment in large doses.
For the current time, these two points are our strongest titles for the poster, although more ideas may appear within our research or when we return to meet at college.