When you’re working as a digital designer getting messing and physically working with your hands isn’t something that happens regularly. I was really excited when I found a master class in screen printing at a local brewery. When I started with this design it was an intricate set of 3 poppies. Once I got going I forgot how annoying it is to cut a stencil with an Exacto knife (scalpel in the UK). I powered through, with a pint of course and ended up with a nice stencil. The best bit was getting to screen print though. Just getting covered in ink a bit and physically working with a medium was something I missed. I definitely want to get my own screen printing kit soon.
So this is my finished project for D&AD. I’m pretty happy with it. I tried to keep it clean and simple. To see how I got here look at this post.
D&AD New Blood is something I’m really excited about. I haven’t been doing much for myself recently when it comes to art direction so I’m excited to be working on this.
But when I started I was overwhelmed to say the least… I mean look at how many briefs there are and they are all great choices. I spent so much time thinking about what I wanted to do. I mean currently I’ve been focusing on design so I didn’t want a purely design brief. I found myself narrowing the briefs down to 3 that I liked the best.
Ford, DesignBridge and John Lewis were the ones I focused on, but as you can see from my notes those three turned to the one very quickly. I decided the DesignBridge brief was the one for me. I’ve been working on it for a while and I think I may have the concept narrowed down. And although the brief is a product design brief I’m going to include some print ads that present the concept further. I can’t wait to present my idea for how to make a beauty brand that breaks the cliche and stereotyped gender branding types.
Verizon wireless is a well known cell phone (mobile 😀 ) company in the States. Although I never personally used their services they are a very popular company. They recently decided that it was time for a redesign and although I totally agree with the thought, what they did is not the best. See the logo’s below.
The check is still there, it’s still a sans serif font, still black and iconic red. But really?! it’s clean which I like, but it’s pretty boring… Yeah just don’t like it. BUT it didn’t stop there… They designed this website.
Yes I did just draw comments on it. I mean as a site it works, but I don’t understand the icons…
I decided to have a go in trying to redesign it. Starting with sketches of course and then creating it again in illustrator.
I tried to keep the logo consistent with the original design. Keeping the red and the check mark in a way, playing with fonts. I ended up being happiest with this one:
I feel as though it makes more sense then the floating check mark and it’s more modern than the old version. I still want to work more on this, so I will try to come back to it.
When I lived in St. Louis I worked for the German School Association of Greater St. Louis. It was an organisation that I was really proud to be a part of. We taught German culture and the language to students every Saturday morning. My classes were children’s classes, but we also had adult classes. But this post isn’t about how great my experience was or how great the organisation is. It’s about something that really bothered me about the company. The Brand Design! From the logo to the Website, I was never really happy with it. I just thought it could be better. I mean take a look…
I decided that I should do something about it even if it was just for me to see what redesign I could accomplish. So I began to sketch.
I tried to think about the various sides of the German school and it’s mission. I thought about how they are trying to show the traditional while enticing students to be curious and explore the modern side of German culture. This lead me to the two design channels.
I then decided to bring the designs into Adobe Illustrator and bring them to life a little more.
German has a great deal of “traditional” and “modern” typefaces that are really attributed to movements and the culture. I started with blackletter fonts and thought that might be too traditional for a school in 2015. So I looked to Bauhaus and tried to draw inspiration from there. Looked at classic Bauhaus posters. I ended up really liking the layered G & S look, but still not sure if that is right for the school.
I started to delve into their website and critiquing what worked and what didn’t. My comments are on the website below. I’m going to need to spend more time working on this, but I think I’ve made great progress so far.
I am lucky enough to have a job that I can do from essentially anywhere. Whether that means in bed, in Dublin or last week in Berlin. Berlin yay exciting right!? Well I wasn’t really there to party, I mean I did of course (it is Berlin…).
I was there to visit my grandmother, who is in her late 80s and lives essentially alone in Berlin. She’s lived there all of her life and there is no way that she is leaving the house she’s been in for decades. She is doing alright though don’t worry the end of this post won’t be and she died… No I mean she’s old so her health isn’t going to be amazing, but she seems to be doing alright. I did try to take full advantage of being in Berlin and seeing her almost everyday. I mean she is the cutest and she’s a huge part of the little family I’ve got. 😀
BUT now on to less personal stuff. The trip began with a flight to Copenhagen. Ok yes Edinburgh to Berlin isn’t that far and yes there are direct flights, but the difference was almost £100 and I’m not made of money haha. But being that it took forever for me to get to Berlin, there was lots of working at the airport. This included several Skype calls with clients while wandering around trying to find what to eat for lunch. The Copenhagen airport is insane, there is literally everything you can dream off in a clean but dark style. Also they have Joe & the Juice which is apparently everywhere but I’d never heard of it. And although I didn’t give it a try (I wanted to eat real food not just juice, plus limited time), it looked impressive. It was like a juice/ coffee bar that was pretending to be a club. I’m not going to lie I didn’t think I was even cool enough to be in there. Still the airport is absolutely amazing.
Then there’s Berlin… what can I say about Berlin. I’ve been going about every other year since I was 18 months old. It’s like a 3rd home to me (St. Louis, Edinburgh, come on keep up). Upon arrival I went to the apartment that I was staying at and its covered with graphic street art and above a tattoo studio. Um it was pretty amazing. Also it was a lush apartment which was huge. I stayed with 3 guys who will remain nameless because they want to stay off the grid or whatever. Haha. (Yes their faces will be shown because it’s 2015, what is privacy, deal! ha)
The trip consisted of a dose of touristy things, a dose of catching up with family, working and clubbing. First there was Tresor which was cool. Clubs seem to be in warehouses in Berlin so that’s where this first one was. There were 3 bars, but only two were open while we were there. It was a great deal of dancing, fog and some alcohol. Even though we were out till 4:30am it was a relatively tame night. But we realised quickly going out before 2 am is early. Definitely would have to get used to that. They were also really against any photos so I took this one somewhere (who knows where, I won’t tell you hehe). The club we went to the next nice hated it even more, they physically put stickers on to your cameras when well if you got in. It was called Berghain and it is crazy. I mean they turn away so many people. I was so nervous that we were not getting in but after almost 2 hours in the cold and a staring contest with this guy:
Who is apparently the notorious for not letting people in. Check out this article about the club if you want to know more. But a quick quote from the article says it all:
“…Don’t look too glamorous; look queer; don’t act like a tourist; don’t look too young; don’t show up as a group of straight men or women; dress eccentrically; go alone…”
I doubt the guys I were with would like that description but hey I’m 25, straight, showed up in combat boots, ripped tights, shorts and a leather jacket and got in! It was as though the entire club was pulled straight out of a vampire movie like Blade or that scene in the club of the 2nd Matrix movie… Wow those are cool references. Ha.
Berlin in general is one of the most inspirational cities that I have ever been to and every time I go I feel refreshed and a burst of creative energy. Whether it’s the new stores/ restaurants popping up all over the place, the graffiti or the Buchstabenmuseum. Yes if you know German that is the letter museum and well it is basically that, a Typography and sign museum. I loved it completely. I’m not going to go into detail here, because if you love type you’ll see in a few photos why I loved it and if you don’t meh look anyway!
Other then that we did lots of walking around being tourists, eating amazing food and some shopping. Oh and going to bars and galleries all in East Berlin for the most part. Don’t want to bore with minor details so here are more photos! Warning: I’m completely obsessed with the TV tower if you can’t tell. Let me know if you want to know more about anything else :D.
All photos taken on iPhone 5, some snapchats, snuck in there too ha 😀
Currently trying to perfect the backgrounds for my Animation.
I started with a sketch for my wallpaper. When I began with the sketch I was planning on simply drawing several flowers to create this wallpaper. But I got to a point and realized that I could simply make edits on the computer, so I brought my image into Adobe Illustrator.
I live traced it and added color. Although my animation is going to be really dark and muted. I wanted to start with a bright image that I can bring down in After Effects with the rest of the animation.
Then it came to creating the scene. It had a lot to do with rotating and simply playing with it. I’m still not sure if I am completely happy with it, but it’s a step in the right direction.
Then I of course don’t simply have one indoor background in my animation, but instead two, so I needed to create a second. This time I went for a more subdued background. Once again I will change the way it looks in After Effects, but it’s definitely a start.
I’ve only done a claymation once before and that was of a dinosaur crushing a car. It is pretty terrible, so I won’t post it on here. It taught me that claymation is extremely difficult… So I started early with creating my characters. I of course wanted to start with my main character. Starting with a wire form, made of christmas ornament wire, of course. It proved more difficult than I thought to find cheap wire. The wire skeleton idea came out from inspiration of “The Animation Bible: A Practical Guide to the Art of Animating, from Flipbooks to Flash” by Maureen Furniss. In the book it suggests that the figures should be made of a twisted wire frame. I didn’t do that because it seemed to make the figure too rigid. The suggested some sort of beads, or cheaper clay to build the frame. I decided to use aluminum foil, because the only clay I had is pretty expensive and I am on a student budget. I created basically a skull out of foil as well and then came the clay. It was a lot of trial and error but I think the end result was pretty successful. Below are some progress shots.
With the start of every project comes the initial storyboard. This is what I came up with. It is lacking in lighting and more detail, but it is showing the direction I am going in. This film will be an interesting experiment for me. I’m not sure how it will go. I have never worked in clay… I am going to do my best.