Apeollo book remastered

My initial book was good for a first attempt at creating an artist book, but just needed more. So I expanded on some of the ideas to try and make them more interactive. In addition to this, because Apeollo was lacking in actual narrative content I added some fold out stars, giving a quick explanation about each scene.

These two images show what I did the front cover. Originally it was just a blank cover with Apeollo with written across it, but now I have added a colourful, eye catching design, held together with a custom made band, all of which add to the narrative side and clearly showing what the book is about.

P1040779This picture is the first two pages of the book. As you can see I have added the fold out star which gives a small explanation about the scene which is ‘take off’. In addition to this there is a small pop up alien just to make the first page a bit more interesting.

P1040780 This is the next scene in the on going story. This page initially had a fold out rocket but I changed that to a rocket that can spin around. The reason behind this is because I feel it fits the story better, and also just adds a bit of variety to the interactive side of this artist book.

P1040781.JPGOnto the next scene and this page is the most static out of them all. The reason behind this is because the book is quite small and with all of the interactive features the book was getting a bit crowded and overly fiddly, but still I included a pop up star to explain the story.

These two pages are my favorite during the whole book because of the pull up rocket, 3D pop up flag and Apeollo gorilla. The use of the string attatched to the rocket means the reader can ‘land the rocket and prepare it for take off back to Earth’. This was probably the hardest page to assemble but I had good fun in the process because it is something completely different to the rest of the scenes.

This project overall was not what I expected to be doing at all but was good fun and does get you thinking about the narrative with in most projects, and how they can be portrayed.





Digital Emboss

At the beginign of this project I decided to make my pages stand out I wanted to and some emboss printing for two reasons; to make it stand out compared to all of the other designs, and because my article is about climate change and the Earth I wanted it to be tactile. Although this would really nice it would not be practical which is why I have tried to do it digitally.

a matter of time emboss copy

I have attempted it on the word ‘of’ and although it does look nice and realistic because it has been done digitally it defeats the point of why I wanted it originally, to be tactile. So what I have to decide now is what I want. Either have it done properly with the press machine, do it digitally and lose the tactile element or not have it at all.

A Matter of Time Edited

a matter of time new file final.

This is my edited version of my spreads and pages. The first page I changed to make it more like an opening page should be; big, bold and telling some of the narrative of the article through a visual metaphor. The main change to this page is the heading ‘A MATTER OF TIME’. By changing the font colour to black it stands out much more clearly. With the word ‘Matter’ for each character I made the colour slightly lighter to emphasise  the fact the Earth and its matter is slowly disappearing. The final edit to this page was the word ‘TIME’. I substituted the letter I for a : the symbol on a digital clock, making the word a form of expressive type, hopefully giving the front page and heading more meaning.

On the 1st double page spread I have made a couple of edits from the previous document. The first change was the subheading ‘The Alarm Bells of Climate Change’. From feedback about the last document, the subheading was a bit random and all over the place. While experimenting with different options I could use I decided to see if I could try and make it represent something to do with climate change. So the format I came up with not also fits the page well with negative space, but it also shows in my eyes cliff erosion as the length of the subheading gets shorter and shorter as you go up the cliff. It is a similar story for the start of the body copy of text. To make the design look a little more dynamic I designed it so it is getting shorter and shorter, much like reduced resources.

Moving onto the 2nd double page spread the next significant change is another subheading to break up the page, and help the flow of the readers a bit more. Before hand I felt the text was floating around, but by adding a subheading ‘The Clash of Two Worlds’, it encourages the flow of the readers eyes. It has a greater sense of hierarchy so they have an idea of what to look at first. The second change to this page is the cracks and the call out. All I did was bring one half of the call out from the top of the page to the bottom so it reads easier.



A Matter of Time

a matter of time

This is my latest version of my editorial design. Overall it got good feedback but there are a few changes that need to happen. The first is simply the headline needs to be bigger and bold to get a greater sense of hierarchy, and maybe change the colour of it to do so.

Moving on to the double page spread I should make the sub heading just easier on the eye because it is currently sitting unnaturally and looks slightly out of place. The only other edits I really have to make is the type detailing in the body text. By getting rid of the orphans, sorting out my rag and changing the M dashes. Otherwise I just have to be more playful so my design despite looking good looks less predictable.

On the more positive points I received my imagery is sorted and are all good uses of visual metaphors, all expanding on the point that time is disappearing for planet Earth. In addition the use of call outs along the cracks was commended as well but just to lay it out slightly differently so it is easier to read.

Overview of Constellation

Starting from the very beginning my first experience of constellation was analysing a couple of different movie posters and deconstructing the meaning behind them. I have done similar stuff to this before at A Level on my previous subjects; Graphic Communication and Media Studies. So I found this process fairly natural but was useful to get back into the habit. This skill has always been very useful for my subject of Graphic Communication, it means I can quickly deconstruct and analyse pieces of work very thoroughly. What I found particularly useful about this first session was how it was structured and the method used on how to break down the images. This method is called ‘Cath’s Columns’. It is where you have three columns labelled ‘describe’ ‘analyse’ and ‘theory’, helping me break down the visual movie posters in a easier way to what I have been used to previously. The describe and analyse bits were fairly straight forward, but theory was a bit more difficult, which involves finding the suitable evidence to back up my claim. But to this day I still use this method and use it frequently in my own practice of work and subject area, probably one of the key skills I have gained from constellation.

My first term module was ‘Smells like Teens Spirit’ which was all about subcultures and how they function in society. This subject helped me with my image breakdown even further, so much so that I wasn’t looking at just designs of posters etc anymore and breaking them down, but just standard photographs as well.

During my time in ‘Smells like Teen Spirit’ I took a particular liking to the punk subculture which I ended up doing both of my essays on. At first I found it difficult to connect constellation with graphic communications, trying to make links and similarities. A lot of the time I felt I couldn’t connect the two and although what I learned about subcultures was interesting I feel it hasn’t benefited me in terms of linking constellation and graphics. The one thing I did link though was during my assessments. For the first essay my question was “How does the God Save The Queen album design relate to punk?” This was good because it was relevant to what I was doing in graphics because I was focusing on a piece of design, but also got to learn about the context of the piece.

The most important bit of information I gathered from this part of constellation was how to structure my essay and reference correctly. When it came to the essay side of things I would make sure that my arguments were clear and sufficiently back up with specific referencing. As mentioned above I learnt  how to use direct quotes and how to paraphrase to back up my arguments. Although this is not linked to my subject of graphic communications it was still a vital skill that constellation has taught me to use, and use correctly.

In my second term we focused a lot on critical thinking which is a process that you actively evaluate sources of information, and the reasoning and actions behind it. Similar to what we were doing in first term but focusing more on the origin of the source . I learned that as a critical thinker I should never accept anything as face value. You should always ask questions like; Who has written/said this, Why are they writing/saying and are they biased. If you take all of these into account you can analyse the source of a piece of information albeit a piece of text or image very well. Through all of this though it is important to keep an open mind and better to give your strong opinion, rather than sitting on the fence which helped me have a clearer understanding of the topics at hand.

Thinking about it I have used this critical thinking technique in my practice of graphic communication, most recently when analysing magazine double page spreads. I would often look at the spread and question why the designer has put the ‘headline’ where it is and why the image is the size it is and not another side, which is similar at looking at a piece of text and asking the same questions, why has it been written this way and who wrote and what are their motives etc. By doing things like this, sometimes without thinking about it is what would make me a successful designer in the future and that is partially down to the critical thinking methods I have picked up from constellation.

On the whole the two main things that I have taken from Constellation is the analysis technique, Cath’s columns and the critical thinking. I feel I use the columns analysis more consciously as I am physically drawing the three columns out and making sure I do each step correctly, where as with the critical thinking I am doing subconsciously all the time as a graphic designer.

Pace of design

This post is about the pace of my editorial design. Previously my layouts were all the same giving no sense of pace or different meanings and although they look nice they looked ‘boring’.

The cracks are supposed to be a visual metaphor representing how the world is deteriorating and getting worse and as us humans put more stresses and strains on it, until it gets to the point where it can no longer cope. This is what the progression of more cracks is supposed to represent.

Group Feedback

In my feedback with my group it helped me understand what my aims were and it gave them a better sense of knowledge and clarification on what I was aiming to do. Together we pin pointed the focus of my article. My focus was about time and how it is running out for planet Earth, but us humans now have the chance to slow that process of global warming down.

I couldn’t decide on a fixed target audience because I feel this article should be read by people old enough to understand the concepts, and the effects climate change is having on us.

We then went over my working methods and we all decided that we preferred our own ways of working and try to stay away from forcing out ideas,rather than letting come naturally, which is why I stuck to my sketch book for creating ideas. After I sketched some loose spread layouts I went to the computer to get designing. The reason I said they were loose sketches is because they were just supposed to be used as visual stimuli.

We then moved onto my first few mock ups and creations and the group decided that my visual metaphors were good in the sense that they helped entice people into the narrative, and also helped with the dynamic layout. One thing that cropped up was the quality of the images when printed off on a larger scale. So I got some tips and will increase the dpi on Photoshop.

They also said there was a strong hierarchy which gave the whole spread a nice flow and was easy to follow.

Finally onto paper choice, they thought with the whole global warming theme, the use of recycled paper would fit the theme rather well.