Thursday, 31 July 2014

Extreme Makeover: Tribute Edition

I'm going to make this post a quick one because I'm off to work in about 20 minutes, so it's either short or I get fired, so it'll just be a short one.

I messaged the good man that is Mark at The Brickyard and asked him if he had any work for me, and as it turns out he had something that needed re-designing, because I'll be honest and I'll show you, it was designed by the bands promoter and it is bloody awful. (sorry if you are reading this, hire me next time)

Yeah, it's not very good.

When I was sent this poster I took it upon myself to redesign it, even to the point where I don't know whether I'm being paid or not, and honestly I don't care, I just had to correct this injustice in the design world and more importantly I could not let this sit outside my favourite venue in Carlisle.

For the poster I designed I wanted to link to the bands name - Queen II - so obviously I used ideas and the imagery from the album cover, and it struck me with the idea that they have Queen in the name, so I should make it royal or regal.
I was also told I was to use the colours of deep purple and a dark yellow which I thought it looked quite royal, and a Queen is royal, oh and Freddie is pretty much pop royalty. Easy solution; make it look like a legal addressed letter, gig poster hybrid, of course!

I did what I could to make a regal letter, gig poster combo.
I feel it's not my best work but I did have to hand create their logo again as it wasn't available in a high enough resolution.

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

A post about film, older than myself.

About two months ago, myself and my friend James popped into our local (and favourite) chairty shop - Age UK, Denton Road - and bartered the ladies to see if they had any film for 35mm SLR cameras.
As it happens they produced this dusty small wicker basket full up with obscure items for photography of the past twenty years.

After rooting around the little basket for a good minute, I passed through some unopened government stamped waterproof film for Kodak cameras from 1984, eat your heart out George Orwell, and then I found the film I have had produced today.
I found this film, which was previously bought from Boots and expired on the date of 06/92. This means that at a minimum this film will be around 22 years old, but knowing that film can last around 8 years with good clarity, I assume it's around 30 years old.

I bought it for the extortionate price of 25 pence and eagerly took it home to load it into my camera.
The next day, we got some lovely sun, and I had some free time; so of course I went for a wander and took as many photos as I could.

After it sat on my shelf for around an month, I decided to get it developed today, despite me knowing that it was going to cost me a bloody fortune. I went into Boots, just before work and handed them the film to produce. I finished work, picked it up and brought them home. I wanted it in digital format as well as prints but I then found out they couldn't digitise them for me because my film crashed their whole system. Brilliant!

I looked at the images above and thought, these aren't my images. But actually they were; I had double exposed the film, unknowing that it previously contained someone's holiday photos of what looks like America. And the outcome is pretty cool, and I'm sure I'll find a use for them somehow.

I may have loaded the film incorrectly, or the film is just odd.

I rather like this one. The stuffed birds do it for me.

No idea what this is.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

If you haven't already

If you haven't already liked it, please go like my Facebook page.
It will mainly be full of my day to day things that either aren't important enough or enough finesse to post on this blog - so this'll range from horrendous design I spotted, to which part of the kitchen I'm doing design in that evening.

If you go like it, I'll invite you to my birthday party. Not really but it'll really help me get out there and hopefully be noticed. Click or die!

Loves ya!

Monday, 28 July 2014

Another Chalkboard for y'all

This evening, I set myself up in the kitchen with a large floor cushion, chalk, pastels and a sketchbook.
I would do it in the front room but I was banned from doing them in the front room, due to the chalk dust falling into the carpet.

I had a sketch I did a while ago that I wanted to turn into something real, so realising I had a few hours free this evening, I set myself up and set to it. I got the idea for the layout from some French typography I saw on the internet, I really liked the layout and decided to make my own version of it.

I made this very simple, but eye-catching for a passer by, to instantly grab their attention; whilst drawing the main attention to "beer". If you haven't already noticed, I am making these as ideas for the pub I'm working at, as they lent me the chalkboard to practise on.

Don't you be spying at the boxes under our stairs.
I mean it home slice, some seriously cool stuff in there.
Not really, it's a hoover box kept for the warranty.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Take that, leaflet!

This week, I saw a boring leaflet for The Brickyard that advertised which acts were on.
I looked at what I could do, and decided that I would do a simple re-design for the leaflet to would fit into their budget and free of charge because they don't need to fork out for design that isn't essential.

To be honest, I wanted to do some design anyway, because I was bored as heck.

So I took the leaflet home, and drew up some ideas and emailed Mark (contact at The Brickyard) about if I could help and what were the parameters for the leaflet. I found out that it was basically an out-of-budget item which had to be made as cheaply as possible, due to it only being for the people that didn't use the internet and wanted to know about the dates for certain acts.

Everything had to be monochrome, simple, cheap to print and easy to edit.
So I went to work on InDesign, looking at the website for inspiration and the design to keep the all the venues branding as a constant.
 I used free fonts and packaged it all together with no imagery so, at no point will the leaflet ever have any copyright issues.

Me and my centred mole attacking the boring leaflet.

And now although the leaflet is still very simple, and slightly boring, it's less boring that before and should gain a little more attention than before.

The leaflet folds into three on each grey fold line, so that there is maximised space on each side of the A4.

I know the monospaced font isn't the best for legibility but it follows the branding.

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Tutor David Robert - Happiest man in the world

Recently I've seen the appearance of tutor and general IT mastermind David Robert become more and more frequent; both around the studio and in crit sessions. The thing with this is, the more you see Dave, the more apparent it is that he is possibly the happiest man in the world.

In the studio, I just expect to see him happy as he goes around fixing our Photoshop woes and making the circle of death disappear. But what you don't expect is seeing him at around 8pm on a winters Thursday night walking out of Co-op in shorts and flip flops, smiling ear to ear with a four pinter of milk in the pouring rain.

I would also like to add, that I am glad he is becoming a more prominent feature in the Grillust line up as he is obviously happier than any living soul, and I feel he is a strong member of the studio crit team. SCT for short. This is all assuming that he wasn't always he permanent feature in days past, as my knowledge of his presence is only from 9 months of education.

But finally, from all this I have drawn the conclusion he truly is the happiest man alive, and made this post in his honour.

Here are a few sample images of his happiness being exposed, with great amounts of pixalisation.

Even as a minuscule prop slave, Dave is still happy.

Monday, 7 July 2014

Kitty loves Snask - just like me

Today my Snask book arrived, and it was the exact same colour as my chair, so I thought I'd take a nice photo to send and brag to my buddy James - because we both love their design to extent where it's rather unhealthy.

And as I posed the book and turned around to get my camera, my cat jumped straight up onto the chair and decided she would be the model for this photo shoot. And it turns out, it makes quite a cool looking photo.

"Oh, you are trying to take a photo?"

Ado-be-Gone #5 - Nice Buns

Day five of continuous postings, and I'm still going strong.

All of about an hour ago I was 'spitballing' ideas and scribbling little things down in my Moleskine; thinking about using string, wool and possibly even the cat to create letterforms, all the while the girlfriend is slaving away in the kitchen doing her best to make some tasty ass scones for us. (p.s. they did turn out tasty)

As I come round the corner I see the flour spread all over the kitchen side and I have a major light-bulb moment! Wouldn't it be great to cover her in flour and look at her reaction! But luckily I restrained and had the idea to make the letters inverted in the flour, which to be honest was the better idea and safer idea for my genitalia.

Throwing around ideas of what to write I was just coming up with terrible, like really terrible ideas but Gaby shouted out "NICE BUNS!" and the rest is history. Well no, it's not really but it was much better than any of my ideas so I've stolen it and claimed it as my own, like that pesky friend we all had who took your Pokémon cards and pretended they were their own card - Yeah, I haven't forgotten you little shit.

Anyway, I went on a bit of a tangent there, so here is the fifth addition to my self-initiated series with help from the girlfriend!

Watch the tea.

I feel it works rather well that the letters aren't all perfect and uniform.

You wouldn't like me when I'm floury.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Ado-be-Gone #4 - Dead Good

And it's the forth addition to my Ado-be-Gone series, on the forth day - I'm being pretty keen about this.

For this one, I wake up late on a Sunday after a long nights work and find myself once again bored by watching Lizard Lick Towing, which if you don't know what it is, you are missing out.
But after a few episodes and the feeling of being inanimate and the consumption of several cups of tea, I kicked my butt into action and got to it.

This time, I did not raid the kitchen cupboard, or even the bathroom sink. No this time I was much more heartless; I went to the two vases around the house and collect the flowers that I bought Gaby as a moving in present and began to violently hack at them with scissors and pose them on the kitchen floor.
Worry not, I was not that horrid, they were dead because she kills flowers faster than bird flu in a chicken coop.

I was not able to construct or think of any great puns for this type attempt so I went with the obvious and clear message about the flowers dying. I would make a poet reference and say they symbolise the passing of all life forms and the connection between the gifting of flowers in both situations of extreme joy and despair, but honestly, I'm not that pretentious or talented of a poet.

I used and abused the flowers to make this simple piece of type, which isn't as strong as the others but it has good structure and a good message. I tried to make it quite a condensed font with medium kerning, like a sort of Univers sans-serif type font but it is limiting with flowers as a medium.
But as a reflect they are not that bad of a medium to work with, it's just easier to have more than less.

Gosh darn, I do like the lights in my kitchen.

"Dead" - also staring a re-appearance of my feet and my perfectly centred mole.

Saturday, 5 July 2014

Motown & Soul night at The Brickyard (for the second time)

Second post of the day, oh it's my second post of the day. Goodness I'm sad.

Once again you may notice by the title that I have designed for the Motown & Soul Night at The Brickyard, and this time I think I may have created a strong style for it.

I once again looked at my inspiration and figured out where I wanted to go with it, trying the same style as the previous poster but I created a new one that I feel doesn't directly link to every poster of the Motown era but it certainly grabs your attention and transfers all the information that is needed whilst giving you a subtle hint of the posters of the era.

I found myself a great photo of a young Stevie Wonder and started to structure my type around it, which once I found the correct font it all started to fall into place and look really nice, really nice indeed.
I started making the poster with quite pastel like colours that faded into the monochrome image in the background but after some 'back and forth crits' via email with Mark, we decided the colours needed to be brighter after comments and ideas from people who attended the event last time.

After a bit of tweaking, vibrancy changes and roughing up we reached a point where we were both happy.
With this poster I feel I could of made it more traditional and fit the genre more by making the poster just like what they had back in the day, but that's not what the client or his clients want. We were told bright and bold and slightly like the posters of the past so that what I've tried to do right here.

As a final comment, I'd like to say that I really enjoy doing these and if you ever get to do design for The Brickyard, make sure you take it because Mark is a pleasure to work with. Not only that the client is very thoughtful and has lots of set information and idea, it is a huge opportunity to get noticed and practice through quiet times (summer holidays).

I'm hoping to make this a running style and build a constant character for the future Motown & Soul posters.

Thanks again Mark!

Ado-be-Gone #3 - Smile

So today, myself and the girlfriend have been moved into our flat for all of 1 week, and of course I'm still being as helpful as possible by using lots of household items (which we don't have much of) to create typography on surfaces around the house.

For this one, I found myself on a Saturday morning with nothing to do other than watch the Food Network and sink into the sofa, and although that is pleasant for about an hour; once you've heard the word 'decadent' a dozen times it rather starts to grate.

So I threw myself out of the moulded seat to which I had become accustom and headed for the bathroom cabinet. Not usually where typographers go to create letter-forms but this time it was needed.

This time I grabbed the toothpaste and got to work attacking the sink with it's minty blue paste; and after about two minutes past and a quarter of a tube was used, I can safely say that it really doesn't make a great medium for anything other than dental hygiene.

And if you were hoping for a horrendously good pun today, I am afraid you are out of luck, because I have just a simple word that I feel really relates to what toothpaste makes me do, and also what I do most mornings as I stand in the mirror staring at the strange gurns that I pull and I try to brush my wisdom teeth.

Without further waiting, I present to you. My third addition to Ado-be-Gone, Toothpaste edition.

Smile, it was just more of a thought because it's what I do when I wake up early to have my shower and brush my teeth whilst sunshine pours through the window adjacent. It really is one of my greatest pleasures, along with Jazz records of course.

Look at that messy sink *tut tut*

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Ado-be-Gone #2

For the second addition to my self-initiated project Ado-be-Gone I had the idea to make some typography with food. For quite a few reasons, one that I really like food; almost as much as I like Type. Two that I love calligraphy and what is better to make calligraphy than Spaghetti?

So this evening, I grabbed a handful of spaghetti and started to let it boil whilst I thought of the most ridiculous pun. And lord and behold I got a corker, and it's just as bloody awful as you would imagine.
The pun is really satirical towards myself because if you know me, it's basically my second language.

This is the second part of my project and I feel it's not as beautiful as the previous but it still works well at being ridiculous and rubbish in humour. I could of made the 'pasta-type' on a flat horizontal surface but then it wouldn't of been tediously difficult or nearly as pointlessly impressive.

"Now it's pasta joke" I know, I know. I should give up design and be a comedian.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Playing with fire - 100th Post

Well writing this I am rather excited, rather excited indeed.
Since creating this blog I've had a lot more inspiration and attention from the world, even though it started slow, rubbish and unpopular.

I really kicked it into gear when I started this first year of University after sporadic amounts of posting through the years, and from there I found that a few friends and anonymous people around the world started to enjoy reading my online waffling and Photoshop tests.

Now that I've reached my 100th post, and I've got a total of 6940 views on my blog, I can honestly say that I so happy with the progression I have made, and the presence I am creating for myself both on the internet and the industry. If you have visited my blog a hundred times before, once before or this is the first time; thank you.

So to commemorate reaching this milestone not only in University, but in my blog and my progression in design I want to make a special 100th post self-initiated brief; and this project will be (drum roll please) Ado-be-Gone.

My idea about Ado-be-Gone is that I realise I spend too much of my designing time on Adobe products, and especially when I am creating typography, which I should really spend more time practising without the aid of Photoshop or Illustrator.

The brief is simple: create as much typography as I can without the aid of Adobe products or even using them at all, and hopefully throwing in some satire and puns along the way.

And this ladies and gentlemen is my first post for this brief and my first bit of type play that I will grace your eyes with.

For this one, I used matches due to the fact that we bought matches the other day but ended up with about 10 packets for 80 pence, so I thought I'd make use of the abundance of fire sticks.
Big up the 'pink socks, pink chair' crew

"You fire me up!" Get it? (Warning: I'm bloody hilarious)

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