Constellation PDP

Using the columns for the first time made it so much easier to write up the essay in comparison to last year’s writing tasks I completed. My ideas and the theory were much more organised than last year and I found the whole process much more enjoyable than last year. The whole process was considerably less stressful and terrifying. I also found that taking my laptop to every study group helped a lot as it meant I could write everything that the tutor said which was tiring but actually cemented the knowledge in my mind as opposed to taking notes on paper last year when I couldn’t keep up with the speed of the tutor talking so my notes were sporadic and didn’t make any sense at all.

Some difficulties I encountered whilst doing the second and third columns were using met search and identifying the correct quotes. In terms if met search I found it hard to phrase the search words in a way that would bring up results that I wanted. I have difficulties phrasing things in a more sophisticated and academic way due to my dyslexia. To combat this, I sought help from my housemates who were also in the study group so I would tell them what I wanted and needed to find and they would help me word it in a way that brought up much more relevant sources than I was finding on my own. I now know I could have done this with the library staff but because of issues surrounding anxiety I found it hard to build up the courage to do so. The other main difficulty I was having was deciding whether or not the quotes I had eventually found actually supported the idea I was explaining. This I think got better as I went along in the essay and gained a bit more momentum and confidence within the essay. Finding the confidence to do this was difficult again due to my dyslexia I struggle to feel confident in pieces of writing but with the help of the columns I felt much more comfortable in producing a piece of writing as appose to last year.

Whilst exploring the images and concepts present in my chosen images as well as the concepts we discussed in the study groups I found that the idea of attractive monsters really interested me. The juxtaposition of the opposing ideas creates conflict within the audience but also the monster. But I found it especially interesting how the female monsters I studied used their sexual identity as a tool to further their monstrosity.  I found it gave the monsters power that is different from the stereotypical weak, passive and pathetic horror film female victim.

This project has lead me into thinking about the topic of my dissertation, I am currently thinking about exploring physical appearance and monstrous acts but focusing more on real life not just in films and literature. I have always had an interest in psychology and pour behaviour as humans, I was considering looking into real life monsters; criminals, murders etc. And how their appearance has effected the way people react to them. For example, if a murderer is conventionally attractive would people be more empathetic towards them where as they may show more hatred towards someone who has an appearance that differs from what society views as ‘normal’– tattoos, shaved hair etc. I think I could then look into the way these monsters are represented in film and tv in dramatizations of true stories and look at the way they are characterised and if there are certain things that are emphasised more than others in these dramatizations of the acts. An example of this would be the retelling of the Shannon Mathews abduction called “The Moorside”.

Constellation has affected my studio practice I have found I look more closely at how things can evoke feelings without overtly expressing them, meaning people must look into the work I create and consider it more. For example, when we see marble we think of its cold smooth but hard surface. Using the columns has urged me to realise how important it is to consider parts of my work. Looking at the different meanings things can convey, this could mean extra research into the meaning and context of the work but I think it will make my work much more successful.

I now feel more considerate in my design decisions in terms of composition and remembering fundamental blocks of graphic design such as hierarchy, colour, tone etc. Working on and in until work is as good as I can produce but remembering how valuable taking breaks is to progress is another thing I have gained from constellation. I see it as something I like to do now with both academic and creative work, taking the time to make sure everything is in place and not only looks good but functions to the best of its ability.

After finishing the essay I feel quite proud and satisfied with the result as I struggled a lot last year and was beginning to dread writing an even larger piece of academic type writing. I think I have really engaged with the material we have covered in the study groups as well as the research I have found for myself. Moving forward into planning the dissertation and the dissertation proposal I think I need to make sure I have the right systems in place to keep my ideas organised as this is what has made the process of this year formative assessment much easier and more enjoyable to complete.


Cut and Paste – Summary


I have really enjoyed the project overall and have found it really interesting to use pre-existing images to create new ones. I have found it exciting to work quickly and with less caution as I do within my graphic communication work. In my future subject work i think I will use collaging to help me quickly generate ideas and also help me with the composition of my work using shapes and colours from magazines and found materials. I found working collaboratively interesting as it is a different kind of collaboration than I have done before. Giving the work to somebody else to take away and then work with was interesting as it meant I had no control over what would happen to it whereas in subject we work together towards an already discussed and planned outcome. Handing over control of an outcome is something I am not used to but I found it interesting. I think I will try to carry on the kind of collaboration we have used in cut and paste as it introduces new and different ideas into the space and piece. I think I would like to use collaging in my future work as I really like the hand-made, rough around the edges look of the work I have been creating during the field project as well as taking this paper based work into digital methods that I am more accustomed to such as illustrator and photoshop as well as using digital methods. I have been really interested in looking into to collage artists, such as Robert Rauschenberg whose work has really inspired me in terms of using materials other than just magazine or book clippings but expanding to using paints and moving into adding 3D components to my collages. The film we watched about Henry Dager’s weird and somewhat tragic life showed us the true possibilities collaging and creating narratives and how purely image narratives can work really well. His work also explored the use of repeated figures and motifs which is something I think would be really good to take into my graphic communication work. I also found the concept of ‘outsider art’ really interesting in the way certain types of art from certain places is not as widely acceptable because of the place of its origin and also the people who make it, people who have committed crimes or who are mentally unwell. Thinking of things in a more narrative focused way will also help me in my work as story telling through images is really important in terms of communicating a message with images.

Cut and Paste

A brief history of collage

20th Century Paris – taken from the french word that means ‘to stick’

1900’s – Pablo Picasso used scraps of paper that he found and recycling materials when he was too poor to buy traditional art materials, used collage to create depth in his works such as “Guitar, sheet music and glass”

1920’s – Kurt Shwitters – dada artist, chaos and nonsensical work was created by the dadaists. Using found objects and materials. At this time there was a real hierarchy in terms of what materials were good and sophisticated high art and what wasn’t and using rubbish went against all of this.

  • German, Jewish man who had to move around a lot and ended up on Iles of Man war internment camp.
  • created installations of rooms “merzbau in cumbria”

Hannah Hóch – feminist art, slamming two completely different things together

Paul Hausman – “mechanical head” 1919 bring sculpture into collage

MAX ERNST – Victorian imagery seemlessly cut out and stuck back together to create weird story books of images such as “a little girl dreams of taking the veil”

Joan Miro – 1930’s used images from catalogues as preparatory works for his paintings – composition and colour

Joseph Cornell – created surrealist boxes “soap bubble set”

Decollage – the art of taking away to create images

Outsider art – art that comes from places like prisons and mental institutions
– Adolf Wolfi
– MArtin Ramirez


Digital Ephemera – GIF

I have created an animated version of my printed ephemera as it has a good narrative to it and I thought it would tie in the concept well.

To contextualise the GIF some more i added it to the side of a bus stop in a suburban/ residential area as that is where I think the advertising for the exhibition would be best received and reach the most people.

Printed Ephemera

Posters –

I have decided to use the red background in my posters to keep the visual consistency with the animation. I have used some of the same images too as sort of icons that are transferable throughout the brand identity. The handwritten type is the main feature in the posters, I have included the Bradford Council logo to contextualise the poster and also the Bradford Review logo which is a publication focusing on arts and culture events in the city. I have also used one of the hand drawn lines to section up the poster and improve the effect of the hierarchy. I have included a short description of the exhibition to further contextualise them.

cutout poter skyline point text and logoscutoutbuilding poster finishedrepetitionposter 1

Exhibition card/ flyer –

For my other piece of printed ephemera I wanted to make a ballot paper for people to vote on whether they thought we should redefine or redesign the spaces. After a tutorial I decided that the ballot could work as an exhibition card as well, instead of just having a card with an image and information the card would have another purpose.

Ballot slip and info card..jpg

I think I need to add more hand drawn elements top the page, I am going to have the two boxes hand drawn and also a white border around the red square. I will add some single lines as well to match the card with the posters some more, making sure they don’t end up looking too similar.

Ballot slip and info card 2.jpgAfter adding in the hand drawn lines I thougt the second page was looking too strange with the image sideways so I have combined it with the red cross out lines form the logo and think it works a lot better and works with the collage type of aesthetic I was aiming for.

I have also realised after printing off a sample of one of my posters that the body copy point size is too big for the exhibition card so I need to do some sample prints of this document to try and get the point size right,

After printing a test I have noticed that the underline of the ‘Have your say’ isn’t level with the end of the y descenders. I will try to change this as and get it lined up.

Ballot slip and info card 3.jpg

I have added the date of the exhibitions opening to both the front and the back of the card as well as lining up the underline.  I still think that the second page needs some work ass I don’t think the amount of white space is working still.

Going back to my posters I realised the logos I had added were pixelated, realising that id made them photoshop explained this so I made more in Illustrator which solved the problem and enabled me to add them to the posters at a smaller size without them being fuzzy.

I have printed out tests of my ballot paper but i think its too big, instead of being a5 i think it needs to be a little smaller, Im going to do a few different tests to see.

I have printed on newsprint as white paper was making the document look too clean cut and too coorperate. The newsprint works really well and the flimsy nature of the paper fits with the collage aspect and also the fact that its a piece of ephemera that is disguarded in some cases.  I have tried printing out the page and adding the hand drawn elements with actual pen but i’m not sure if it works and also for the GIF I wanted to create i would need the elements separate so this is something i need to think about.


Animation Development

After thinking about the kind of animation I wanted to do I decided on one that would illustrate the nature of the brand identity – choosing to redefine not redesign the space.


At first I was just experimenting with the logo before really deciding that it needed to look as through it was being drawn because of the nature of the hand drawn type. After trying to fit a sound from the internet into the animation and it being really badly out of time I decided to record myself writing the words and after using after effects to speed up the sound file to be in time with the digital ‘drawing’ I achieved a much more convincing result. I am now playing with the idea of back ground sounds, maybe the sounds of a city or traffic and human noise.

I have tried the animation in a different variety of colours. But I still need to work on the composition of the video and also find out how to export it at a higher quality.

After watching the animation with my peers they suggested that the image in the background was too static and needs some form of movement or motion or something.

I have changed the image and the background colour in my animation now to match the posters aesthetic a bit more, but I need to make sure it doesn’t get too samey and repetitive.  I have also added a noise effect and a slight movement toward the building in the image, as well as speeding up the animation some more.

I think I still need to work on the timing of the animation but it doesn’t seem to work properly on my laptop which is a slight problem as ive had to shift everything onto a memory stick and relink all the files and work on the animation on one of the Macs at uni.

Exhibition research

Garden Museum – Pentagram

All of the touchpoints in this design work really well cohesively and the consistency of the colours and shapes make the whole system really successful. Even down to the widow stickers, which are grey, you can tell they belong all together thanks to the strength of the different shapes they have used. The greens have very obvious links to nature and gardens and the bright flashes of yellow and red are symbolic of bright flowers, a really simple and graphic brand identity. The bold sans serif works well with the more curved forms of shapes. I want to have the same level of consistency across my campaign.



Designs of The Year 2012 – A Practice for Everyday Life

The Design Museum’s 2012 Designs of the year has movable and changeable elements that can be edited as the exhibition goes on and announcements are made. The red, white and brown of the plinths. I think thats something I will consider with my exhibition and how it can be the best use of the space.

Designs of the Year 2012 — A Practice for Everyday Life_files 1designs-of-the-year-2012_5Designs of the Year 2012 — A Practice for Everyday Life_files 3Designs of the Year 2012 — A Practice for Everyday Life_files 10

MGMT National Building Museum

The use of colour in this exhibition of windows livens up the subject matter, it also allows the visitors to find different sections and creates a sense of a line going through the exhibition that will guide the people through. I think this idea of colour sectioning is something I will use in my work.

mgmt national building museum mgmt national building museum2

Similarly the Illuminating India exhibition at The Science Museum uses different colours to section up the exhibition space so it is a tried and tested wayfinding method.