Thursday, 22 May 2014

OUGD603 - Final Evaluation.

I have developed a huge amount ok skills during this module and I think I have progressed a great deal as a designer. Through the process of completing briefs I feel that I have refined my practice as I have found what I do and do not enjoy. I have found that I am passionate about designing for retail and creating brand identity, packaging and editorial surrounding this. Because of this I now have a large collection of briefs that are relevant to each other and could be used to create a consistent portfolio. Linking with this I have improved my skills in creating boards and designing something that is clear for other people to understand, this new knowledge can be transferred onto creating boards for my portfolio. Taking part in live briefs and working with real clients has improved my skills in designing for an actual purpose rather than things just for myself. I have improved in being able to interact with others in a constructive way and organise my time in order to get things completed. Live briefs have definitely prepared me for the real environment outside university.

Aspects that have informed my development are things like primary research, I think I have really pushed this through the module and I have seen and felt the benefits. Most of my primary research has been going into shops and evaluating how things appear in the environment, due to most of my briefs being involved in the retail sector. I found this very beneficial as I could see how things appeared in context. Working collaboratively also informed my development as I found that is something I really enjoy, as well as this I also learnt things from the people I was working with as they have different skills to me. Trying new processes was also exciting as I now have learnt a lot of new skills including edge painting, triplex, plastic moulding, laser cutting etc. Live briefs have also developed my practice as I now have a better understanding of how things are likely to work in the real world with having to work with a client and having stricter deadlines.

Some strengths I feel I have within this module are packaging design as it is something I really enjoy and have developed over this past year. I have gained more knowledge in how to apply things to a three dimensional space and creating a range. I think these aspects within my practice are strong. Due to me making a lot of packaging my crafting skills have got a lot better as I have wanted to produce a high quality, professional finish. I feel I am also good at working with other people not only on a designing level but also others from outside the environment and I have really enjoyed it.

Some weaknesses from this module would be that I could have done a lot more idea generation. Even though I had a lot of development this was usually from one of the first ideas I had thought of. I feel that some briefs I could have pushed further for example with a packaging brief I could have also designed more extensive promotional and supporting material. I think I could have also experimented more with different stocks and materials to give my work more variation.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

D.C Book - Evaluation.

I think from putting together this publication it has become even clearer to me the type of design I like and can see myself trying to get into in the future. It is very reassuring to clarify with myself the area I want to focus on and improve. When gathering the research I found myself reconnecting with studios I hadn't looked at in a while and also discovering new designers that I previously hadn’t heard of. I feel that this book will still be very useful to me in the future for referring back to and getting inspiration.

Before I started this brief I was unsure as to how I would approach it so I made spider diagrams that noted down my interests and themes within them I feel this was very beneficial in structuring the publication.

I feel a strength of this brief is that it is so relevant to my current practice and what I aspire to. The chapters some up exactly the sectors of graphic design that I am interested in and want to focus on in the future. I have found the examples of work I have included I have written about in a way that sums up why they are important to me and why I aspire to about them.

An aspect that could have added more depth to the publication would have been to gain some primary material, like interviews with some of the studios that were included. I think this could have added another level to the content.

Personal Branding - Evaluation.

I feel like my new branding has improved a great deal from my previous designs and it is more appropriate for my current practice. I began the process by reviewing what I had previously done. I analysed what I did and didn’t like and made a list of the things I could do to improve it. For example adapt the colour scheme, experiment with processes, look at alternative layouts for my business card and cv and create a larger range of products including postcards and a live website. I felt like doing these things has led to a more professional end outcome.

For research I looked at examples of other peoples personal branding, from these pieces I like the bold use of colour and lettering. I also looked at the type of products that were involved in these collections, from business cards to cv’s, websites and extra material. I also wanted my cv to be more creative and exciting to look at but I was unsure how to do this and still achieve a professional finish. From my research I saw that adding colour was quite a frequent technique that added a simple point of interest. Info graphics were also popular and I liked the more subtle versions. Due to wanting to have triplex cards I researched into the process and ways that I could craft it myself.

I feel a strength from this project is how consistent the end products are. This is due to the constant colour scheme and the continued use of the vinyl stickers. I also think because of the vinyl and the triplex layers the collection has become more memorable.

Something I could have done to improve the finish further would have been to get everything printed professionally, therefore having a spot varnish rather than the sticker. However I feel what I have done is suitable for what I need it for at the moment.

L.D Editorial - Evaluation.

Aspects that I have improved during this are my skills in layout design as the composition had to be consistent not only through one editorial but also across the whole range. This was very important to me, as I wanted each publication to flow into the next. I also felt I learned more about how to work with a real client and how to inform them on the changes being made. This was quite a quick turn around brief but there was still some development that took place during the process. After designing the first draft a mock up was printed out that Lauren could look through and note down any changes that were needed to be made. The things that were changed most drastically was the cover style and also image orders.

I gathered together a collection of research material for when I started constructing the books. I found it was really helpful to have something to refer to when the designing was taking place. Some main aspects I took from them were interesting composition ideas for the images. I particularly liked when certain photographs were positioned across a double page spread or the use of margins.

A strength from this brief is the quality of the professional print. It was really exciting receiving these as it is great seeing something come together. I really like the simplicity of the design and how everything is so consistent across all three editorials. Even down to the cover design where the images chosen are of a similar front on, portrait style. I think the use of white in the compositions really helps to frame the images.

Something I could have done differently to improve this brief is to maybe use a more interesting format as the A5 size is quite standard and is something I have used a great deal across the year. Experimenting with this further could have made for a more exciting end result.

Yearbook - Evaluation.

I found that this brief was as much about organisation as it was design and a lot of our time was spent planning different aspects that needed to be done and collaborating with people outside of each other. I feel because of this I have really improved my skills in organisation and communication as I needed to make sure tasks were done by a certain date in order for the project to progress and be completed by the final ‘send to print’ deadline. I have also greatly refined my editorial skills, I found that as this was a live briefly so closely linked to the college the level of finish and consistency of layout was very important, this led me to learn a lot in a short space of time.

We conducted research into previous yearbooks from the course, this was very beneficial as it was clear to see what did and didn’t work, we could also discuss with Duncan about this to hear his thoughts on what he wanted. It was clear that he wanted the focus to be on imagery with limited white space as well as the focus on the course as a whole rather than the individuals work. We also researched into options for a more interactive publication, the main ideas we gathered from this was coloured paper inserts and a wrap around cover that would double up as a poster.

As mentioned before I think a strength from this would definitely be organisation. On a basic level we had to organise our own time to meet all the necessary deadlines, as well as organising photo shoots in and out of the studio of the environment, work and students themselves. We were also back and forth from the Textiles office getting feedback and content from Duncan. I feel this has taught me a lot about the expectations once leaving university from the outside world.

I think a weakness of this project is that it isn't as interactive as we initially wanted it to be, for example there wasn’t the resources to be able to get the page inserts. If there had been more time I think I would have liked to think more into getting an alternative for this. However I am really pleased that we were able to get the wrap around as I think it really ties the whole publication together whilst adding an exciting additional element.

Monday, 19 May 2014

L.D Editorial - Complete Publications.

Completed versions of all three editorials, it was really exciting seeing it all come together. I really like the simplicity of the design and how everything is so consistent across all three editorials. Even down to the cover design where all the images chosen are of a similar, front on portrait style. I think the use of white really helps to frame the images and the varied compositions makes it interesting to flick through.

D.C Book - Final Boards.

Personal Branding - Final Boards.

L.C Branding - Evaluation.

During this brief I improved my branding skills as I had to find an aesthetic that suited Lauren’s personality and design style. I haven’t had a huge amount of experience of creating logo but I knew the style I wanted to achieve. I wanted it to be type based with a simple, contemporary look that wasn’t fussy and overbearing so that the designs could speak for themselves. Because the logo was so stripped back I incorporated bold, block colour to break up the white but still be not distracting. I feel like by completing this I have really began to understand clearly the aesthetic that I like.

My research began by finding out more about Lauren and her work, to do this I visited her space in the studio to gain inspiration from her colour palettes, research and designs. This was really helpful to me because I feel I went away with a much clearer understanding of where I was headed. My research then followed on to more general textile designers and their branding, I found a common aesthetic choice was hand rendered type that was often coloured. After seeing these it cemented that it was not the route I wanted to go down as I felt it looked to traditional and fussy. To incorporate colour I thought it would be exciting to paint the edges of the business cards so that they created impact when stacked together, I looked into cards that used this process and guides to how to complete this myself. I’m glad I did this as I feel it is a strong aspect of the branding.

A strength is the level of consistency across the products and with Lauren’s own work. I feel they work seamlessly together which I’m really happy with as that was the aim from the start of the brief.

I think a weakness is that I could have covered a larger range of products like a web presence or more stationary material. I think these things could have elevated the project a little further.