Thursday, 22 October 2015

Blogging Workshop - Blogging Skills for Level 5

Blogging Workshop
Blogging for Level 05

Task 01 – Re-writing in third person
OUGD504 – Brief 02 – Further Development of Ideas
Original blog post: After hearing back from the client, I decided to make some subtle adjustments to my logo design. Tim mentioned that he wanted the logo to feature a cartoon like sheep illustration, preferably standing on a patch of grass. I took these points on board and went back to the art-boards in Photoshop. I scanned in a lovely piece of ink marbelled paper and converted it to monochrome. I used marbelled paper to complement the existing ink work. I then selected a section which was pretty dark in order to compliment the very dark ink drawing of the sheep's body. I then used the lasso selection tool to cut away at the section of marbelled ink to create a sharp grass effect. I then placed the new section of grass underneath the sheep so it stood nicely on top of it. Prior to experimenting with the scanned ink work, I created a section of grass using the pen tool on Illustrator which provided me with some basic effects, satisfactory for the vector based design but not for the more organic, rough and ready ink design.

I am quite pleased with the way it has turned out. I think adding the grass adds a sense of balance and harmony to the design and it is also an ideal place to position text should I choose to place it there in the final design. I also experimented with making the sheep's face black and inverting its facial features. That point was raised in the crit. I am still undecided whether or not to keep the face black at this stage, but for the purpose of development I think it was a good design decision to make, I am still very much unsure of which typeface I am going to use in the finalised design, or whether I am going to design a bespoke collection of hand rendered characters myself. I will wait until I have received further feedback before I make that decision. 

Re-written blog post: After hearing back from the client, some subtle adjustments were made to the logo design. The client mentioned that he wanted the logo to feature a cartoon like illustration of a sheep, preferably standing on a patch of illustrated grass. These points were taken on boards and implemented in the form of developmental art-boards. Marbelled inked paper was used to complement the existing illustrative work. The piece of paper was scanned in, edited appropriately and formatted to fit in with the existing design. Adding the grass into the mix allows the design to feel more harmonious, making the logo feel more balanced in appearance. The face of the sheep has also been darkened slightly, an improvement that was suggested in the final crit session. Type decisions are yet to be fully made, as there are uncertainties surrounding the choice between hand rendered type or web fonts that attempt to replicate hand rendered typography. At this point, further feedback is required to move any further with the brief.

Task 02 – Design as entity
OUGD504 – Brief 02 – Type Decisions
In the later stages of my development, I experimented with various typefaces to see how they would interact with my illustrative hand rendered design. I was primarily seeing if web fonts that are designed to look like hand writing would work well with my designs. I played around with Amatic SC for a while, but after receiving some feedback early on I decided to move away from it and try out some more 'solid' sans serifs. People said that Amatic reminded them of cheesy posts that you would stereotypically associate with Tumblr photography posts. Amatic does have some redeeming qualities, but ultimately didn't really integrate well with my illustrated sheep. 
I decided to see what Bebas had to offer my design. I quite like its contemporary feel, and I also liked the way it contrasted quite dramatically with the roughness of the illustration. However, after receiving some quick feedback I realised it wasn't suitable for this design. People made the point that it looked like an animal cruelty campaign, it is just a bit too harsh, especially when underlined. I agreed with these points of critique, so I moved on to look at other typefaces and experimented a lot with hand rendered type. 

Continuing with the development, I experimented with a number of typefaces to see just how they would interact and compliment my illustrative hand rendered designs. I did this to see if web fonts that are designed to emulate hand rendered type would actually function and integrate with the existing designs. I tried out Amatic SC, but decided to abandon it rather quickly after receiving some feedback from peers. Amatic SC is a highly stereotyped typeface. Culturally and aesthetically, it has immature connotations that reminded a number of people about ‘teenage Tumblr posts’ that are basically unprofessional and clichéd. I don’t want my logo to communicate in this way, and if I had stuck with that type decision, it probably would have sent out messages along those lines. Having said this, Amatic SC does have some quite charming qualities to it. It reminds you of hand rendered type but ultimately it did not integrate enough with my illustrations.
So, I moved onto a more contemporary, rather trendy sans serif named Bebas Neu. I was drawn to its contemporary, solid aesthetic. It contrasted perfectly with the rough aesthetic of the illustration. However, after receiving further feedback I realised it wasn’t wholly suitable for the design aesthetic that I wanted to achieve and communicate with the client/audience. Bebas is a striking bold font that has associations with strong messages/campaigns. It is harsh especially when set quite large and underlined. I agreed with the feedback and decided to experiment with my own hand rendered typography.

Task 03 – Summarise & Evaluate
After acting upon feedback given in the crit and listening to the requirements of the client, I decided to refine my design even further. I am still experimenting with typeface decisions at this current time. In these experiments I opted for Akzidenz - Grotesk purely because it is such a classic modernist sans serif. It is purely functional and I think it actually integrates really well with my illustrative centre piece of the design. I also decided to subtly separate the head from the body with a thick white line, which adds an extra sense of depth to the image and also uses the idea of positive and negative space to create the illusion of dimension. I am going to show these designs to my peers and the client to get further feedback. 

Summarise: Taking feedback on board, I continued experimenting with type decisions. Firstly, I looked at a number of classic sans serifs ranging from Akzidenz Grotesk to Helvetica to Gill Sans. These sleek, timeless sans serifs are reliable and compliment my design beautifully. However, peers in the crit mentioned that they thought the contrast was too much and a subtle hand rendered typeface would complement the illustrative design more effectively.  
I searched the web for some digital fonts that replicate and embody the essence of traditional letterpress typography and hand rendered typefaces. I placed with within the logo to see how they function. I was fairly pleased with the results but it still required pushing around and experimenting.

Task 04 – Blogging with Purpose
OUGD504 - Brief 02 - Collateral Designs
The brief specified that I need to design a minimum of two pieces of collateral that feature the logo design in some way or another. I already had a few ideas of how the logo would work in the context of collateral; however I still conducted some brief secondary research in order to inspire further design development. Below are a few experiments for collateral designs. 

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