Visiting the final years summer show was really insightful, the way the space had been used was really interesting and complimented the contemporary work wonderfully. I really enjoyed seeing the variety of work on show and the range of projects /styles/ outcomes actually surprised me as I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from a graphics exhibition.
I liked this work due the how slick and clean the design of both the poster and accompanying booklet, I think both were considered and carried out with real care and attention to detail. The work illustrates the stages of genocide and i think works really well at communicating a difficult subject. the limited colour palette works really well I think and adds to the visual strength of the piece.
This work really intrigued me as it explores the differences and similarities of more traditional visual communication techniques (screen print) and more digital ways of working, the posters are what first caught my eye and the video accompanying the posters was really interesting to watch and showed the process of creating the work which i think is a really interesting thing to show an audience as it can be the most important part of a piece but the viewer rarely gets to see it.
I really liked the idea behind this piece and thought it was really clever, it has also been completed to a high standard and really looks as though it could be part of a new campaign to raise awareness of the subject. The bright yellow against the white really works and having a cut out of the instagram filter makes it feel like this campaign is something that could travel around colleges/ sixth forms and you can see people taking photos with it and really engaging with the idea. The concept fits perfectly within its target audience and the addition of the buzzfeed element feels really contemporary and like it could be applied to the real world straight away, I think this project has really done a fabulous job on creating awareness for a difficult subject.
Here I am testing out different positions of the title, after I printed out the first it wasn’t reading how i wanted it to so tried a few other ways. I also mirrored the Background so it would stretch across the spread and lowered the opacity of the image and the title so it isnt as harsh and matches the density of the introductory paragraph.
I played around with adding a box around the paragraph in both white and a 70% opacity box to see if it made the text any clearer.
Adidng the box does draw the eye over to the text but i would need to print it to see how effective it is.
Moving on to page 3/4 I have been experimenting wiht different body copy type faces and lots of different columns and margins.
Looking at my research I’d seen the use of titles similar to this off centre and stretching over the paragraph. I have decided to use justified type as it fits with the clinicality of the subject matter in the article I also think it contrasts well with the more organic less rigid hand drawn type of the pull out quote which I have just realised might need quotation marks – I will discuss this in the tutorial tomorrow.(friday the 5th may)
The page is looking a little boring and too clinical so I am going to highlight some of the important parts of the article using a similar colour to that of the image on the first two pages this will also add to the consistency of the page. I have found a tutorial on how to do so. Underlining then changing the weight and offset of the line gives the highlight effect. I will also try a hand drawn highlight placed from illustrator to match the type and simply a coloured box with a lowered opacity.
Hand drawn line at 100% opacity
Hand drawn line at 80% opacity
I think either the underline or the 80% opacity line work the best but it is just whether or not they will work well across the whole publication now. The hand drawn ties the style of the title into the text but the underline makes the body copy look neater and cleaner so I need to decide which way I want to take it.
Changing the colour of some of the words in the quote lightens the page visually and ties in the colour of the highlights.
Looking at the texture I created and the works of Francis Bacon I’m going to try and look into different ways of creating texture – cotton wool, ink and salt – using the curing meat with salt to prolong it and using this as a metaphor for the prolonging of life with the “God pill” the article talks about
The colours are visually similar to the ones I have used and connote the flesh, bodily, human tissue like themes that I want to get across in my piece.
Researching the curing with salt process I found that you just have to cover the meat with sat and spices and leave it for a while, trying this with ink salt and paper might produce some interesting textures/ visuals that I could develop and incorporate into the magazine.
After creating some ink and salt spills I have photographed them and played around in photoshop with the brightness and contrast and levels, also replacing the colours in some to make them fit the scheme of the first page. I think the textures and shapes fit with the clinical, human body theme of the article as they look like blood spills or like growing organisms.
I have printed all three spreads out in colour but on a smaller scale but the colours of the visual components don’t match up, some have a more purple twinge to them and the images on the ones above aren’t see through enough for the text to be clear so I need to change this.
At this stage, whilst waiting for a tutorial, I have printed off all three spreads to see if they work as a group. I think they look alright but maybe the first and second are too focussed on the left and look a bit samey because of this. I think the text is also too big and might need reducing a pint size(currently 11).
After my tutorial I need to change the point size and be more experimental with the highlights and add even more hand drawn elements – rings around bits of information. We also discussed adding more of the texture elements and including some on the second spread – whilst changing the way I have used them on the 3rd spread to create more of a sweeping thing to work as a path for the eye and so it doesnt effect the legibility of the text. I’m also going to change the way I present the pull out quotes and make more of a show out of them,
Here I’ve started to add more of the highlights and the page seems to be coming together more now.
We talked about the posibility of having a whole page red, Im not sure where i would fit this in but i tried adding some block colour to the page. But I think it might be too much? I am going to try circle the 15000 deaths bit.
After a tutorial and peer comments I have realised the circle is still not enough to draw attention to the detail of the 150.000 deaths so I tried a circle and red text however that clashed, here I have got the text underlined, bigger than the rest of the title and in red but it is lacking something still.
During the tutorial it was also discussed that some of the highlights could be different opacities to aid with hierarchy and ordering the information.
I decided on the image behind the text and have tried the body copy in red, however it needs printing really to see if you can read the text within the highlight.
I think I like the red text but i’m torn as to whether or not it is too much, I have created a circling on illustrator as none of the original ones were working.
To make the text on the first spread clearer I have made the section behind it lighter. The legibility is greatly improved without the loss of the effect of the image.
Using illustrator to create the pull out quotes using the hand drawn type, I used this method for all of the quotes.
The talk from Bruno Maag and Tom Foley was an interesting insight to the world of typography design.
They talked about their work for LUSH and Intel and the long process type/logo/branding has. It had never crossed my mind that complex script like arabic could come in different typefaces, as silly as that sounds. They talked about how difficult it is to make digital type look handwritten and the use of design variants to make it more convincing, this means having multiple versions of one character that will swap out to give the digital type the feel of inconsistency that hand written type has. They use these design variants for the most common characters and ligatures (a/e/fi etc).
They expanded on script styles and the different problems this creates when designing a world wide typeface like the one they designed for Intel and how in certain scripts you have to incorporate the origins of the letterforms and the weighting of line strokes. They went on to discuss how to create a typeface/family you start with key characters (k/b/a/s/n) because they have all the different components (ascenders/descenders etc). The talk highlighted the level of refinement that goes into professional type design and how many stages are involved.
What is it?
Conceptualism is ‘idea art’ it is not categorized with painting or sculpture but uses the materials an artist deems appropriate to put their idea across. There is no certain style or trend that outlines conceptual art but there are common ways that emerged between the mid 1960’s and 70’s. Conceptual art spread across Europe, North America and South America. The most widely used techniques include;
instructions (Sol LeWitt’s wall drawings instructions and diagrams)
actions – similar to performance but letting things happen (Beuys sat in a room covered in felt with a coyote as an expression of his anti vietnam war stance.
land art – physical intervention with the landscape (Richard’s stomping of onle row of grass to flatten it which showed in a photograph when the light was shining at the right angle)
found objects (challenging what we class as art objects)
documentation (documenting a process or period of time like “post partum document 1975 – the documentation of a mother and sons relationship over 6 years)
Conceptual artists emphasised the processes and methods rather than the finished object as a criticism of the commercialised art world as because there were no ‘finished’ objects they couldn’t be bought and sold placing the value of the work on its ideas. Much conceptual art comments/ addresses social and governmental issues.
Marcel Duchamp is known as one of Conceptualisms forefounders specifically his work “fountain”
Joseph Kosuth, Art After Philosophy (1969)
I think the main ideas behind this text are that artists should be questioning art and philosophy and Kosuth thinks this isn’t happening. More than anything it seems he comes from a position of opinion that conceptual art is most valuable and “half or more of the best new work in the last few years has been neither painting nor art” which kind of takes you back to the debate of what separates painting and sculpture and the ‘flatness’ issues. Found the article very hard to read and I’m unsure if I at all got the jist of it?
Read Sol LeWitt, Sentences on Conceptual Art, (1969)
Theses numbered sentences that seem to follow some kind of flow from one leading to the other are almost equally as confusing as the first article but I think it highlights the importance of the idea and its value in creating new ideas, leaving logic behind but following illogical/ irrational ideas logically?
“When words such as painting and sculpture are used, they connote a whole tradition and imply a consequent acceptance of this tradition, thus placing limitations on the artist who would reluctant to make art that goes beyond the limitations.”
The nature of Conceptual art according to LeWitt should not be limited by labels of outcomes “Ideas implement the concept”. He talks of one concept creating different idea chains between artists and no form is more superior to another but the right form is that which is appropriate to the idea and they are all equal.
However the best ‘sentence’ in my opinion is “Banal ideas cannot be rescued by beautiful execution.”
Repetition and circulation and readymades
Duchamps readymades, mainly Fountain are curious as the are repeated but there was never an original because the objects are that of mass production, and in the case of fountain the initial fountain has been lost so it exists only it its repeated forms.
The readymade is a ‘snapshot’ a ‘rendezvous’ or a moment between artist and object and becomes a readymade due to inscription or relocation/ repositioning. The signature on the urinal is a repetition of the comic Mutt and Jeff a ‘household name’ used as a linguistic pun, Richard in french a slang term for rich man – each part of the work is considered. The urinal is repeated (not exactly) in different context to comment on different issues or different purposes. Reproducing work in complicated or elaborate ways to emphasise the importance of process even in reproduction. Reproductions in different forms e.g blueprints for the replication of the initial fountain.
The overarching message of the lecture from David Joselit is that an object can disappear into reproduction. How exact reproduction of the notes on Duchamps bachelor and bride gives them value because of the extensive processes he goes to to make them exact copies
The NSPCC campaign “Share Aware” is targeting at young teenagers and children, the style of the animation is simple but complex enough to keep the attention of the audience. The transitions of the animations are very smooth and when i visualise our animation this is the kind of thing I see. I think it would be a good idea to kind of create our animation of the back of this campaign when it comes to the style and simplicity of the visual metaphors.
Whilst visiting the street, or a street with a similar name, where Luis met his wife I discovered that it isn’t what I expected at all. Whilst there I took photos of the street and any interesting objects I could see.
After getting back from the site visit I started to play with quickly collaging the images using coloured paper and the photocopier to quickly create different compositions and just as a way to inspire myself.
After doing these quick experiments I identified the images I wanted to take further into screenprinting – something I want to explore during field. I chose four images as I thought it would be easy to work these into a narrative or into a series.
I planned how I would lay out the final booklet/poster/piece would look like and how I would make the images relate to each other – I thought about some type of fold out piece that would have prints on each layer or a book style or something that would stand on its own as a piece not just a print on paper – I decided to go with the latter as I wanted to have the work to have a physical presence within the groups final exhibition.
I roughly used cut out images to find an order that I thought would work well, I decided on the one above as the street name acts as a cover and the other images work as separates or all 4 work in the line. I began with the image of the chair creating paper stencils to use for different layers of the image but I had a bit of trouble with the stencils as I was putting them on the screen in different ways which meant the prints didn’t line up. Although it’s not what I expected/ was aiming for i like the quality of the print on the left as Its still clear that its a chair but theres ambiguity that the opposite angles create. Similarly with the print on top of the image – the print lifts the image but does so subtly which is really effective. I decided to use the dull green/ greyish colours because the chair was yellow/grey/green and it reflects the worn, tired dull and dreary.
After a day of printing and experimenting and trying to get my head around the layers and stencils I would need I printed onto some off white/ grey thick paper folded to make a concertina that stands. The muted colours work really well against the grey background and reflect on Luis not so cheery story. I thought about adding background but I don’t think the image really needs it.
Alongside the concertina idea i thought about a fold out sheet and a little book ;
Fold out idea
I think the booklet idea is nice and it lends itself to creating a narrative with the association to children’s stories with lots of images – if i had more time maybe adding text from letterpress would be a good way to extend this particular possibility.
After the chair i moved onto the washing umbrella contraption – i chose the image as i found it quite funny that there was one lonely jumper hanging in the rain. It also links with Luis story in that when he finally settled in Cardiff he was still seen as an outsider and labelled an “alien”. Again I split the mage up so I could use different colours for each part and it made it easier as I was using paper stencils and to do it all at once would be near impossible, I think it looks a lot better in sections anyway.
I think this was the most difficult print to get right as the stencils were so delicate and again I put one on the wrong way round so the final print doesnt line up they way I wanted it to but it still looks alright and because it didn’t need to be ‘perfect’ for the exhibition just a indication of where the piece would go I thought it would be fine to leave it – and it was already too late to change as i’d printed onto the concertina so I stuck with it. Im happy with the way it turned out apart from it not being completely straight but I think that’s part of screen printing.
Here I have used one of the test prints a fine liner and marker to recreate the image in a different way which I think has potential for further exploration.
Next I did the first image of the set images which was the silhouette of the end of a row of houses with the street name (Louisa Place) on. I wrestled with the idea of including the text or not and how I would make it possible, in the end I decided not to include it as it would make the image more obvious and thats not what I wanted although it would mean the link to the story would be clearer but I didn’t want to spoil the visuals of the concertina.
Looking at he image now I think it has become my favourite because of its ambiguity – however when it is shown along side the part of the story it relates to it becomes quite obvious.
I left the electrics box until last as i thought it would be most difficult but actually it was the part I found most enjoyable as it worked really well, I used 3 different paper stencils for the print. But because I had lots of test prints of the other stencils. I started to print on top of these which created some interesting outcomes, the first on tracing paper.
Using tracing paper and printing is something I think I could explore more especially with the photocopier to get lots of quick outcomes to develop on, it would be a quick way to build layers of image as well. I also love the flattened folds that show on the photocopy.
The actual prints of the electrics box were the easiest to line up as there was a lot of lines that needed to be aligned;
When printed on the grey paper of the concertina the colours seem dulled down but thats alright as the rest of the piece is like that ;
There are many different methodologies (working methods)
To work through a project we should
read the brief
idea generation – where the new techniques from the workshop come in
select, develop and experiment – using the new techniques again
visualisation – getting ideas into a visual format – ask for feedback have discussions and so on at least 3/4
reflect and refine – fine tune the ideas 1/2 – this is where your attention to detail matters – everything should be considered and as near to perfect.
SCAMPER – Stands for
– Substitute – Remove some part of the accepted situation, thing, or concept and replace it with something else. – Combine – Join, affiliate, or force together two or more elements of your subject matter and consider ways that such a combination might move you toward a solution.
– Adapt – Change some part of your problem so that it works where it did not before.
– Modify – Consider many of the attributes of the thing you’re working on and change them. These could include: size, shape, other dimensions, texture, colour, attitude, position, history, and so on. – Purpose (put to another use) – Modify the intention of the subject. Think about why it exists, what it is used for, what it’s supposed to do. Challenge all of these assumptions and suggest new and unusual purposes – Eliminate –Remove any or all elements of your subject, simplify, reduce to core functionality -Reverse – Change the direction or orientation. Turn it upside-down, inside-out, or make it go backwards, against the direction it was intended to go or be used.Used to look at your work from different aspects and to question it, creates lots of different ideas from one starting point. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ru9-74qLXAo
The checklist is used to organise tasks and questions on paper – is a good way to make sure you have worked through a project. Simple questions include who, what, where, when and how. Asking yourself questions about work can help push it forward.
The Six Thinking Hats – Edward de Bono
White hat – information – what do you have and what do you need
Red hat – gut feeling and intuition
Yellow hat – positively thinking – what are the good points, but still be critical whilst doing this.
Black hat – highly critical view on the situation – don’t overuse it
Green hat – colour of growth, generating new ideas
Blue hat – overview, evaluation and moving forward.
Lateral Thinking – Edward de Bono Viewing problems from different views – other people – unusual view points can highlight issues/things that are working well.
The Reframing Matrix
4 box grid with problem in the middle- surround with people, product, planning and planning OR the professional approach – looking at the situation as a person in a different profession.
Lotus Blossom An organised version of a mind map – extending ideas and thoughts, creates lots of links.
Attribute listing Listing alternatives to an attribute of a product or project and seeing what happens if you change that thing and input an alternative from the list. Quick way to get different combinations of attributes in one product.
Metaphorical Thinking Describing something using a metaphor that is not directly obvious – giving a strong visual image. Example: “over the last few centuries, the mind has been likend to a steam engine or a telephone. The mind is more than a computer”
Typographer Oded Ezer challenges the norms and pushes the borders of what typography is, he combines the human form/ aspects of it with type to create works such as “typosperma” a combination of sperm cells and typographical figures and “typoplastic” in which he attached letterforms to his body. Taking inspiration from people like John Heartfield (most famous for photomontage) it is easy to see where Ezer has formed these ideas of type/human hybrids.