Thursday, 22 May 2014

OUGD602 // Module Evaluation

 1. What skills have you developed though this module and how effectively do you think you have applied them?

PPP has been a great module in which I learnt about myself as a designer. The skills that I have learn the most are within working with other people and ways to get myself known in the industry. I have also learnt alot about myself through experimenting within briefs and going to different galleries and exhibitions, seeing different type of work.

The main skills that I have learnt are time management, collaboration, social skills, dealing with clients. All these have been put into practice through various briefs within the year. Mainly the ones which have been live briefs.

Going to visit exhibitions and galleries etc has introduced myself to knew people within the industry and also shown me work that others do to give me more inspiration for my own practice.

2. What approaches to methods of design production have you developed and how have they informed your design development process?

I guess within the whole module there has been a lot of research involved, using different research methods I have been able to investigate into different areas of design which interest me and have an influence on what I want to do in future.

In my personal branding, I took a hands on approach to creating all the products, this is because it reflects my practice and it is something that I enjoy and I think I do it well and to a high standard. Within the branding I used vinyl, bookbinding and various stocks and formats to create an interesting product range that showcases what I do.

3. What strengths can you identify within your work and how have/will you capitalise on these?

I think the strength of this module is that it has been a great way for my collect and collate a lot of inspiration and influences throughout the year. Having this available in one place online, is a great way of being able to go back and look over it. Everything that has been done throughout this module has had an effect on my practice and radically changed it throughout the year. I think if this module didn't exist then I wouldn't be as clear about what I want to do and how I want to do it when I leave uni.

In terms of what i have learn through the module, my strengths have been learning about myself as an individual, this was evident through the Dialogue exhibition and it showed me thins about myself that I didn't realise. The fact that I am very determined and will take on any sized project and deliver on it, I am a good organiser and problem solver. I can talk to clients and on the phone pretty well. My talent lies in print and curation.

In my branding I think that the strengths within it is the consistency of the design throughout all the products. They carry the same aesthetical design and apply the branding in the same way through all products. The products which I have created are all relevant products to what I need within my branding and provide a practical sense to my branding. They are all straight to the point and showcases who I am and what I do.

4. What weaknesses can you identify in your work and how will address these in the future?

I think in some cases I have been a little afraid of doing some things within the industry, I like to do what I know and stick to that. This is in terms of work, but at the time it runs into contacting studios and putting myself out into the industry, I'm not always the most confident person with my own work, but when I know its good and other have given me feedback that it is then I will be confident about it and show it off.

I think this has changed through the live briefs that I have taken on. In all three instances the client was happy with the work that was produced and that has given me more confidence to go and do it more in the future.

5. Identify five things that you will do differently next time and what do you expect to gain from doing these?

Interact with the industry more - visit more studios / exhibitions & galleries. Doing this will give me more experience within the industry.

Take effect of this module from the start of the year - I didn't really work that much on this module at the beginning of the year, but I feel if i had of done then I would of had a better understanding of what I wanted to do and using the year to develop and showcase that for when I finished.

Research more - Research more into the areas of design that interest me and look for more studios / designers that work within it, that could be contacted / help me develop my practice.

Attendance - 5
Punctuality - 5
Motivation - 5
Commitment - 5
Quantity of work produced - 5
Quality of work produced - 5
Contribution of the group - 5

OUGD602 // PPP Summary

I feel that this year has been the best year for me with PPP, I think that I have engaged with the module must more this year than any previous year. I believe this because it has been much more of a self directed module this year, I have missed the direction and structure that we got from John in the previous years and it feels as though we haven't really seen him that much this year, which is a shame. But the module itself felt as though it was more directed to you as designer finding your way for life after college and showing the development of this and your practice throughout the year.

This year I have been apart of many more things outside of the course and in design in general. I have attended many exhibitions, galleries and opening nights this year, which I have enjoyed going along to and seeing the different sort things that are being held outside of college and within the local design scene in Leeds.

I think a big emphasis came from working on Dialogue Exhibition, this introduced me to so many designers within the local area, but not only that the interaction with these people was great and something that I had never done to this level before. Along with that I learn so much about myself and my practice through the project. The brief has defiantly influenced and changed my idea of who I am as a designer and where I see myself working in the future. For now it may not be possible to work in print, but once I have the money behind me I want to open my own print studio and work within the print medium on a daily basis.

Live briefs have been quite important this year, they have given me the experience of working with external clients and learning how to deal with them properly. I have found that not one live client is the same and you have to approach every project differently and tailor yourself to the client / project in order to make it work. These are valuable lessons and ones that I wouldn't have learnt any other way.

Presentation within the module, seem to be a lot easier this year. I think through various project and development within myself, I have become quite a good speaker in front of a group of people. I am able to articulate my ideas and explain my work to a standard that anyone who doesn't know anything about me could understand. This will be a great skills to carry with my into the industry as I will be more confident to speak up and raise my own opinions / issue when working on projects.

Overall I think that PPP has been a great success for me this year, I have defiantly been more involved with the module this time round and in doing that I have found benefits from it, that have helped develop my own practice and made me think about what I really want to do when I leave the course. As I have previously stated I would like to work within print and have my own print studio, but I think that is a long term goal and something that I will work towards in the future, for the mean time, I will keep my interest in print and use what facilities I can to keep this going whilst making my way into the industry to get some experience and see what happens from there. I am excited to go out into the world of graphic design and see what the industry has to offer me. I am defiantly staying within the North, as I feel this is going to be the place for design and creative minds soon, as it is further developing and getting stronger as we speak. PPP has been great and I am thankful for the module as blogging the different elements has made me understand my practice and shown the development of it throughout the three years, now ready to take on anything.

OUGD602 // Future studios to contact

Once we have submitted all our work and got everything done, I am going to concentrate on looking at more studios to contact and try and get some more placements.

So far I have applied for the placement with Peter and Paul, which sounds very interesting and right up my street, so hopefully something may come from that. Also I have been back in contact with the studio I did my placement at and I am currently speaking with them to set up some visit times.

Other studios that I have looked at and want to contact are:

Modern Designers
Modern Designers
This is the bit where we talk about ourselves. This project and that big client. This award and that thing we won that’s now a doorstop yadda yadda yadda. This isn’t really our style though. This is because we’d rather listen to our clients, instead of talking at them. This is why our ideas never come off the shelf. This is why we work with everyone from fashion labels to charities. This is lovingly crafted print,
advertising, digital, the lot. This is attention to detail and time well spent. This is about finding the best
way for you to engage with your audience. This is modern design thinking.

Project 53
Project 53 is an independent design agency based in Leeds and London. We work with local, national and international clients in a wide range of fields from concerts, events, hospitality and luxury to online, digital and sports.

Mark Studio
Mark is an independent branding and graphic design studio, based in Manchester.
Since 2005, we’ve been producing outstanding work for clients of all kinds and sizes, winning a fair few awards along the way.

We’d love to talk to you about what we could do for your business or brand. But in the mean time, we’re happy to let our work speak largely for itself.

OUGD602 // Personal Branding // Presentation Boards

Final presentation / submission boards to evidence the full project from the start to end. The presentation boards show the research, development, concept and final outcomes of the brief.

OUGD602 // Personal Branding // Evaluation

This year I have enjoyed working on my Personal Branding, I fell as though this time round I have connected with the idea of it and enjoyed producing the printed material around the branding. Compared to last year, I think that my branding now it a lot more sophisticated and communicates me as a designer better, the identity is much more considered in the approach to the design and application to relevant products. Plus the branding products this time, take simpler approach and are more focussed on being there to aid the use of the product than being creative and 'designed'. I feel that products are practical and will work for running a business and any freelance work that I do undertake.

The consistency of the branding is much stronger this time round and I have used a couple of printing techniques - simple ones, but ones that add to the value of the branding and make it a little bit more interesting and unique. This would be the use of vinyl on the logo and the metallic black bubble envelope.

Using a serif font was a brave move on my behalf, I don't usually use these types of fonts, but I wanted to show the sophistication and professionalism of my practice, which I believe this does achieve. Also the type looks great and has a really nice character within the letterforms. The small details of the different stroke weights creates a well formed letterform and add a nice detail, along with the slightly over bold serifs, that shows assertiveness and boldness.

As a range of material, I have created a consistent design across all the products. The use stock is evident within the branding, both GFSmith Mandarin and Mist have been used to produce the various products within the range, which I believe covers everything you need to have a branding set and usable product range.

I am much more happy with this branding and I feel that it is a more considered approach to my practice and I feel that it communicates where I am now compared to when I first started the course three years ago. The develop of my practice over these  three years is phenomenal and I think this branding is just the beginning of what will happen outside of the course.

OUGD602 // Peter & Paul Placement

We were given the opportunity to go an work with peter an paul for a paid internship after the course had finished. This would involve working on the college prospectus. If we were interested we had to email answers to a couple of questions and provide some examples of work.

1. Why would you like to work with Peter and Paul on the college prospectus?
I think the college prospectus is a really important product to showcase the course and the college itself, being apart of the college for the past three years I think I would be able to share my knowledge of the college and the course from a student perspective.
I also really the new college rebrand and I think they peter and paul have done a tremendous job of this. I like how they have brought the old identity up to date, by refreshing it and turning it into a modern alternative of the traditional branding. I think it works really well as it still holds the identity and relation to the traditional styled previous branding.
Finally within my own practice I heavily work within publishing and editorial and print, I feel that my skills lean towards this area of design and I would be of good competency to take on such a brief.

2. How would you improve the prospectus this year?
A college prospectus is a really hard product to get right, students that are looking around all the different university are bombarded with such products at every place they visit, the majority of the time they will end up in the bin. I would improve the prospectus to stop this from happening. I think a prospectus can be much more than just a publication. Pushing the product range further and maybe creating more products around it, or introducing a interactive element within the publication to engage the readers further. I think you need to think outside of the box and design something more creative than just a square or rectangular publication, so even the format and print finishes could be looked at to make it more visually engaging and stand out from the other thousands of prospectuses out there.

3. What are the challenges of producing the college prospectus?
As a college with many courses and personalities within these, I think one challenge will be creating a design / product that pleases everyone and showcases the courses how they want them to be seen. Working with the college guidelines and branding is not a challenge, but something that has to be taken into consideration when designing the product. I think if you would be looking at creating a publication that is a different format or works outside of the printing formats, also the use of finishes then the budget could be a challenge to work within.

4. Tell us something else about yourself. 
I'm Nathan, a third year graphic design student. I am a designer that likes to get hands on within a project, be this testing out pre-production mock ups or working within a print studio. I like to work around interaction and creating products that engage the user and get them involved with the product itself. With a love for print, my practice is very print orientated and takes advantage of the physical and tactile nature of print itself. Recently I curated a screen-print exhibition within the Corn Exchange in Leeds. The project was a great success and was received well be designers within the local area, it managed to get featured on Creative Review. The exhibition consisted of around 50 prints which were all hand printed by myself and a second designer I was working this. I'm not afraid to take on large and risky projects as I thrive on opportunities.

Outside of design, some would say I have an obsession with VW Campervana, I love to travel and I am a fan of architecture and DIY.

OUGD602 // Studio contact

Over easter I got back into emailing a few studios and asking them about placements / job vacancies for when I left uni. I feel that this is something that I have engaged with more this year and contacting studios hasn't been a problem for me. This was evident in the COP practical project too, which I got a lot off feedback back from that, so im the hoping the same will happen this time.

I contacted around 4 or 5 studios for placements and then another couple, which were asking for job vacancies. Below are the screenshots of the emails that I sent them and blow is the reply I got from then if there was any at all.

It turned out that not alot of the studios / designers hav any jobs or placements going at this time, even though I didnt get a placement out of it, it has given me contact that I can get in touch with. 

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

OUGD602 // Live Briefs // DFGA

I was asked to do the yearbook for the DFGA course, a first I was a little skeptical about taking on the brief as I wasn't sure if it was right for me to do. The yearbook was to be a digital interactive PDF, this isn't something out of my comfort zone and I have worked on interactive PDFs before, it was more the fact of working with the DFGA course, as I had been told they were quite difficult and there was a lot of personalities.

This was the work that I produced for the Yearbook.

In terms of working with the course, I did find it quite hard. I was in constant contact with the course leader and he set up regular meeting to discuss the progress of the yearbook and give his opinions on what I was doing. The feedback was always positive and working with him has been good. But the students have been hard work in getting the work off them, they didnt really seem to understand the idea of giving work that was suitable for the template which was provided as alot were portrait images and some just had too much within one image. It was asif they were trying to cram as much work into the spread as possible, but really that was making it worse. Because of this, the content had to be reworked and I had to wait around along time to get anywhere with it. The same can be said for the tutors, it has been difficult getting the relevant content from them. Even though we set up the meetings, alot of them were the same as the progress of the yearbook was quite slow.

It was frustrating as from the start I set working on the brief straight away, since Easter the template of the whole yearbook has been designed and the tutors and students were happy with it, Ive just been waiting for all the content as none of this has been in my control. This was the one reason why I had doubts in my mind about taking on the brief.

Even though there has been troubles with the access to the content, working with both the tutors and the students was a good experience, it was good to work with other people that I didn't know and within another course discipline, this opened my eyes to a new area of design that I didnt really know much about. Working on the project has developed my own design skills as working with the interactive PDF isnt something I tend to do within my practice on a day to day basis, but this has made a good change and something that could be of interest in the future within other possible projects.

I think the experience of this live brief was different to the last, this one hasn't gone so smoothly, but thats because the ball wasnt really in my court this time, the DFGA course were in charge and I was effectively working for them. At times I did feel as though they didn't really care about the yearbook and that had an effect on my motivation for the product, but in the end when all the content did eventually come in and I could work on the yearbook solidly to get it all finished, the end product does look great and the interactive elements work a treat.

The course were positive about the yearbook and are using it within their end of year show, by putting it on a touch screen monitor, which will be good to look for and check out. There are some positives from working on live briefs and that is one. Seeing my work on an interactive screen that is hopefully going to be 90" will be amazing and should do the design justice!

OUGD602 // Live Briefs // Luke Beevers Photography

After being asked by my friend to design his brand and identity,  decided to treat this brief as a live client and see how the brief would develop taking on a professional approach with how I dealt with the brief and the communication between us both.

These were the outcomes that were designed within the brief for the photographer.

In terms of this affected PPP, I felt as a live brief it was good experience within my own practice and dealing with clients. Throughout the years off PPP we have been taught how to interact and deal with clients, but the best knowledge and experience is by actually going out and doing.

Even though the photographer was my friend, it didn't really change the brief. I know him very well, so in fact it probably helped me because I know what he likes and what he doesn't.

Throughout the brief there was alot of contact with the photographer, after each stage of the brief we either met up or emailed each other on the progress and I often showed him the progress of the work through taking screenshots and sending them to him.

In terms of the actual brief, the photographer knew the products he wanted creating and showed me examples of the work which he liked, this was a great start and it showed me that he was actually interested in being apart of the process of the project.

When it came to making decisions, I often sent him images of the work and gave him my verdict then let him make up his own mind on the choices, he was good at making decisions and choosing the route to go down, I think this was because he had in his head an aesthetic he was after within the branding.

After a couple of days we had a decision on a version of the logo, this meant the project could be pushed on and developed it into the different variations. I dont think the photographer was expecting this much from me and he thought id just give a logo and thats all, but as a designer I like to push out the boundaries and I would rather create a range / set than just one as the range creates a better project and shows a better understanding of the subject area.

There wasn't really a set deadline in which the project had to be completed, but I didn't want it to go on for a long time, as I had other work alongside and needed to move onto other products. Again I dont think he realised the speed in which this would be developed and he would start to see the brand.

After creating the identity, it was applied to the stationery products, again the photographer was up to speed and told me exactly what he wanted designing and showed me more examples of the products he liked. It was great to have such an enthusiastic client to work with, as it made my job as the designer much more easier and interesting.

After around a week the project was finished within the designing stages and now I just had to wait to print it all. The files were packaged and sent off to the photographer, who again was shocked at the speed that this was created at.

Overall it was a great experience of working with a client. In this case the client was very responsive and was keen to be involved as much as he could with the project, which I am grateful for as it made the project run a lot smoother and a lot quicker. I feel that the branding was well considered and related back to the photographer and his practice well, giving him a professional style to communicate himself through. With the photographer giving me so many examples and explaining what he wanted to achieve this again made the project a lot easier than I thought it was going to be.

I dont believe that all clients are going to be as great as this one and want to be as involved with the work, but as a recent and first live client, it proved to be a very good experience and one which I have learn alot from that I can take away to future projects.

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

OUGD602 // Creative Review Article

As part of Yoke and the Dialogue exhibition we were contacted by Creative Review on the opening night to feature the exhibition on their blog. Receiving this email when things were proving difficult within the day of putting the exhibition up, was a well deserved relief and spurred us on to get the exhibition up and ready for the opening. We were really happy and over the moon when they asked us to be a feature, it proved to us that the exhibition was being viewed by others in the industry and they thought it was a great idea / concept to feature it online.

We were asked to provide information about the project and exhibition, along with some images to be used within the article. We mentioned the college, leeds print festival and other local printers, to show that it is much more than just a student project. We were later contacted by them again, asking for us to provide them with photos of the opening night and they would feature the exhibition in the next iPad edition. Again we really couldn't believe it, it made me feel like we had created something which was of a really high standard - its hard to evaluate it because we were so close to the project and involved in it, to us it didn't seem that extraordinary because we knew what we had to produce for it and how we were going to do it, but getting things like this happen, just proves that the standard of the event and work must have been high and people were really impressed with what we had produced - the recognition for the exhibition was great.

The article can be viewed here:

Article wording:
Creative duo Yoke bring a week-long, non-profit screen-print exhibition to the Corn Exchange in Leeds from tonight, with an aim to create an exhibition space that spurs a dialogue between creatives through a blind collaboration...

Yoke, made up of designers Eve Warren and Nathan Bolton, asked a variety of creatives and studios to submit work that would be used in a collaborative way, to be showcased in a final exhibition called Dialogue. Each designer consented to this, with the understanding they would not be able to choose their creative partners. "The contributors had to be open to their submissions being manipulated through the use of print and the matchmaking process that paired two submissions together, in order to make a series of screen-printed artworks," says Warren.

Although they had originally planned to keep it local, they decided to through the net wider and ended up with over 150 submissions from creatives and studios around the world. "We're excited to collaborate with studios and agencies ranging from locals The Beautiful Meme, to Two Points studio from Barcelona who will be speaking in Manchester over the next couple of days," Warren says. (Two Points talk as part of graphics event BCNMCR, see more in the April issue of CR and on the CR blog here).

As soon-to-be graphic design graduates from Leeds College of Art, the duo decided to do something ambitious to help foster future opportunities, but the initial idea developed from their mutual love for print. "When it comes down to being emerging print artists, we are thankful for being on a course that takes print seriously, as there is the argument that print is dead. Print is not dead. For example, we have seen Leeds Print Festival grow every year as well as see local passionate printers like The Print Project produce so many new and innovative ways to interact with print. There is something so nice about getting your hands dirty in comparison to sitting staring at a computer screen all day," says Warren. "The North is an exciting place to be right now, especially Leeds as in the past 18 months so many things have started to pop up and we wanted to be a part of that."

For me this was great and showed that the work we had put into the exhibition and the time spent on it had really paid off. Creative Review don't just put anything on their blog, it's all high standard and quality work, so they must have been impressed with the exhibition to feature it. This was the first time I have had any work featured on a external website, which was great for me as designer to be entering the industry soon.

Sunday, 18 May 2014

OUGD602 // Design Direction // Curating & Display

Throughout the year I have become more and more interested in the idea of curation and display. I think it is important how you display work be in within a photography shoot or in an exhibition. The idea of curation give an object context, in doing this it makes the audience understand the product further seeing it in its intended environment.

Exhibition curation and displays have become an interest from researching into them for the Dialogue exhibition. Its always been something I have liked to look at, but in doing it within the Yoke project it got me even more interesting in the actual process and thinking of different ways you can display or hang work.

Some general idea on curation and display can be seen below, I feel that researching into this area has influenced how I have photographed my own projects throughout the year. Having a focus on showing products within context in the photography has been an ever growing idea and now I truly believe it is a much better way of showcasing a product.

Exhibition Curation -