Sunday, 19 February 2012

Desktop Publishing?

One of the design outcomes to be achieved through my handwriting project was to create a microsite with an in-built viral. The viral was to count for most of the grade, as we've all done microsites before and should find them "a doddle". I beg to differ...

Anyway, I'm not at that stage yet - these are just the files which will form each screen for my site:

But first to kick us off here's the obligatory "design-sheets on Phil's bed" image:

After setting up the designs I sketched out on paper I was able to put these together:

These first two screens show pretty much how the site should hopefully look - the post-it notes take you from one screen to the next, and, in doing so, a different quarter of my desk. The main challenges were to get each image looking coherent (it needs to be clear that you're simply moving across the same image), and the fact that my desk was grubby with stains varying from pastels, spray-mount and coffee. The first challenge was solved through lighting, and may be helped depending on the transition between screens. The second was solved with a damp cloth.

These second two screens allow room for the posters to be created in another module (the first screen), and for the viral which will be filmed once the microsite is up and running with buttons and the like.

This short vid shows how I would like the home screen of my microsite to look (ignore the classic art-studenty background music!). The user will be presented with the post-it, and upon entering the site this movie clip would play.

Hopefully this all lays some decent ground-work for the site, and connecting the screens should now be "a doddle"... If not, at least I've got a clean desk.

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Still Hunting

A quick catch-up...

A while ago I prepared rough sketches for the purpose of showing what would happen in my book - a children's adaptation of Carroll's "The Hunting of the Snark". Here are some:

A lot of my spreads looked a bit same-y, so I've experimented with angles and zooms - to make the pages more dynamic.

I'm now a the stage where I've begun mocking one or two of these up, to check my chosen colouring method works (bare in mind these are roughs):

The coloured areas are pastel scans, and the drawings are me making use of my new graphics tablet. Here's one of my characters:

I've created the top two in Photoshop, but I have experimented with drawing the figures in Illustrator... My only issue is that I can't seem to get Illustrator to recognise pen sensitivity (hence his flatness)... If anyone has any light to shed then please do!

Friday, 17 February 2012

Ticking over

With my current modules it's been quite frustrating - we're not currently at a stage where I'm producing any final pieces for publication, or anything worthwhile blogging really. So it helps to have a side project so as to gain some form of satisfaction in seeing some final pieces come together.

These are by no means masterpieces (far too much live tracing's gone on for that to be true), but they are quick, attention-grabbing promotional pieces for events our Christian Union are putting on next week. At time of writing venues and speakers haven't even been finalised... But that's an issue for a different blogpost.

(A recycled poster design - not sure if I've posted this one before or not.)

Don't ask why some are different shapes to others - they've been through the wringer in terms of file format transfer...

If I had time to talk about these, I would, but instead I'm going to try and carry on organising them!

Monday, 6 February 2012

Chugging to a halt

At long last, the final piece on this theme... 

I've finally managed to coherently piece together elements to create a microsite (of sorts) in Flash. Uploading the swf for now is beyond me, but here are some screenshots.

It was based on the same idea used for the editorial piece - charity muggers on the streets of Wolverhampton, and offers a witty yet informative exploration of the theme.

Above you can see why this made my head hurt - learning about keyframes, timelines and scripting was like learning a completely new language.

The home screen looks like this, with various buttons which allow you to interact with it. Clicking the people causes the opinion bubbles to appear, the clock causes the chugger to be squashed under the weight... Clicking Greggs starts an animation - a walk-up to the shop which ends in collecting a pasty, although not without interruption.

It took me a long while to get my head around the software, but I'm making progress. Good job, I've got to make another one of these in a fortnight's time.

Thursday, 2 February 2012


Guess I've been sleeping around... Here's my blog I've been keeping for research purposes: and I'm afraid to say I've paid it far more attention than this in recent weeks. I will of course attempt to rectify this.