Color composition

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To start off this assignment I took the the color test. I scored a 15, which isn’t too great, but better than I had thought I would get. It was also a great exercise to prepare me for the actual sketch.

When I began planning my code I realized that I typically don’t implement much use of color in sketches. I tend to focus more on the technical coding part as far as I getting the interaction I want in the code. I definitely spend less time in making it visually pleasing and using color to move a story along.

First I coded the basic background by using a previous sketch as inspiration. Once I got the shapes and background I wanted, I added a slider to change the hues. I have never changed the color mode to HSB, so that took a bit of adjustment to understand the effect of color.

Working with sliders was something else that was a bit different for me in this assignment. I have only worked a little with using a slider to change colors, as I have worked a bit more with using sliders to change the size.

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After adding sliders, I decided that I wanted another effect that ran on its own. Screen Shot 2015-10-27 at 11.15.07 AM

I liked this effect as it gives more of an opportunity to see more colors without changing the slider yourself.

Play with color

Business card

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I went through a few different iterations for my business card. I wanted to create something simple, but bold. Even though I have been having some issues with conveying my name in the way that I think that captures my personality and brand, there are benefits to having a two letter name.

I started with a simple format using the Didot typeface. I liked the idea of having KCL together, but highlighting the KC to show that it was my first name. However, it ends up looking too busy. I added the diagonal line to separate my name from my fantasy job profession. Then on the backside, keeping with the simple, but bold theme, I ultimately deciding to just have a logo. After playing around with my logo from the previous week, I decided to use the Futura typeface and arrange it to appear almost like a logo. In the end, I thought it looked too busy with the two typefaces.

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In my next iteration, I decided to add some color, change the typeface, and the layout of the front and back. The first thing I did was go through several different fonts for “KC Lathrop” to see what I wanted to ultimately use.

For the “front side”, I ended up choosing Helvetica for the typeface. I kept it simple, but instead of only showing the job title, I also separated my contact information. I decided to highlight the KC with the green color and use that color as a theme throughout the card. I thought that this green was particularly calming, but still shows a lot of personality.

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For the other side, I used that same idea for highlighting the KC and made that the entire back side. I decided to not use my logo at all. This was a difficult choice, after going through many version of my name. It may have been from staring at it too long, but it ended up looking like a fish hook every time.

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Although I am happy with the end result, I am very open to feedback and suggestions as to how to improve my card. For my prototype for class, I did not print it in color, as I want the focus to be more on the design than the brightness of the color.

 

Logo design

The first logo that came to mind when thinking about this assignment was the Chase Bank logo. This is likely due to an experience I had walking around Williamburg, Brooklyn when I passed an Italian restaurant named Oregano. Screen Shot 2015-10-01 at 9.23.50 PM

I was caught off guard at first, as if my my eyes were tricking me. From a glance, the octagon shape resembled Chase Bank. I wasn’t alone in this. In fact, the three other people I was with had the same thought. That’s a good indication that the Chase logo is memorable, for even when it’s meant to advertise another company people still think of Chase.

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I love the simplicity of the Chase logo. The blue is calming and familiar. The shape is different than what we usually see (circles, triangles, etc).

Below is the evolution of the logo:

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As you can see the octagon shape was not introduced until the second logo when they rebranded by the firm Chermayeff & Geismar with the help of Ivan Chermayeff & Tom Geismar. The choice of the designing the octagon shape was to pay tribute to the origin of Chase, which began as the Manhattan Water Company, and originally a water supply company. That being said the octagon shape symbolizes the flow water and evolution, as the logo has grown in reflection to the success of the company.

Personal logo

I had a lot of fun trying to create a personal logo. I am looking forward to improving upon what I made, but excited to have experimented in Illustrator for the first time. After watching a few tutorials, I felt that I had a better handle on what I could do in Illustrator. Below is what I created– I prefer the one of the right, as it’s clearer what it’s trying to say.

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Source(s): Wayne, Jamie “The Story Behind the Chase Bank Logo” http://jamiewayne.com/2011/10/23/lxxxv-the-story-behind-the-chase-bank-logo/

Typography

This week’s assignment took me awhile to take in. So, I’m going to do a bit of post-reflection blogging after presenting my typefaces and expressive words. Choosing a typeface to represent your name and even who you are is incredibly challenging. It makes you think of who you really are, what do you really represent, and what do you want to be represented as. A name is such a significant element of who we all are and for me, I feel very strongly about this as I have two names. Karalyn, being my given name, of which I will respond to if called. And KC, what I’ve been called since I was about four years old. It’s been roughly twenty-three years of being called this name, and yet I still face difficulty in presenting my name to people I meet. I am both Karalyn and KC. To me, they are much more than just names; they each represent something significant about myself. People who get to know usually say, “I couldn’t imagine you as a Karalyn. You are so KC”. And funnily, those who have known me for a long time and with whom I have a deeper connection usually get to a point where they naturally begin calling me Karalyn. These people are only handful.

What does this have to do with choosing a typeface for my name? If I am going to choose a typeface to represent who I am, I should present a name that I believe represents who I am in my day-to-day life. And even though have an imbalance of letters for a first and last name is challenging, I chose to do this assignment as KC.

Below are the typefaces I chose. Looking back, I would choose differently. However, as of right now, I think that Alegreya speaks to simplicity, but gives a sense of imagination. It’s a typeface that doesn’t need a lot to say a lot and I like that. Also, I love the typewriter feel of Inconsolata and how it appears similarly to the typeface in a programming editor.

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     Maven pro light

      Sans

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      Alegreya

      Humanist sans

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      Inconsolata

      Humanist Sans

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      Neuton

      Serif

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      Averia-Serif

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     Modern Antiqua

     Serif

Expressive Words

Below are my hand-drawn expressive words. I plan to work on my Illustrator skills and bring these images to life.

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Good Sign, Bad Sign

As someone who tries to practice positivity in chaotic New York City, where one cramped subway ride can ruin your day, I thought I had a knack for finding signs. Even though, this week’s assignment was to find actual signs, I was surprised at how challenging it was for me to not only distinguish a good sign from a bad sign, but finding signs in general.

I noticed these signs– I don’t think the actual design of the sign is necessarily bad, but it seems like it can be confusing information. I found this on the fast paced Queens Blvd. This sign is meant for drivers, are presumably zooming past and having to slow down a bit to understand the true meaning of this sign. Or maybe that’s the point?

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I found a couple of signs that were filled with information overload.

This sign is located on a side street that is more used by pedestrians. It’s located near the top of the building and contains a lot of information that a pedestrian would unlikely stop to read.

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This one, however, is placed in the subway, a perfect place to engage in leisure wall-reading. When you’re cramped in a spot during rush hour and forced to stare at the subway’s wall, it’d be easy to lose yourself in this sign. What I find overwhelming is the use of two (+) typefaces and the use of color doesn’t seem to distinguish hierarchy. The cupid-looking baby is also very strangely place upon the ‘h’ of Health.

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I liked this sign at first glance. I think the typefaces, although two are distinguished between in each other. The more cursive typeface shows more importance by being the name of the dry cleaners and the print-like typeface gives the necessary information, i.e. the phone number.

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This sign is a great example of telling an outsider every thing you could possibly see inside of a store. I found this interesting that not only is it a type of hardware/safety shop, it’s also a deli.

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The sign below is a sign I want to like for my love for pizza and colors, but I find it too busy. The difference in fonts for each letter makes the sign look chaotic. I would change it by make it more simple with a single typeface and a single image.

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I like this sign below because it’s simple, but has an elegant feeling. I think that is reflective to what the cafe is: quaint and sophisticated.

 

 

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The winner in the “bad sign” category went to the one below, hands down. This sign is located in the subway of the incredibly populated, Union Square stop. It seems as though someone came and placed stickers upon a stop sign in no particular order.

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I decided to take this sign on as a challenge. I’m happier with the simpler images and the message. However, I think I would have changed the color or shape of the sign.

This was my second time working with Photoshop, but the first time to actual attempt to edit an image. I found myself struggling to do seemingly simple tasks, like resizing an exported image. Although I was frustrated during the process, by the end I began doing things faster and with more ease. I’m looking forward to improving my photoshop skills in future projects.

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Design Analysis: Assignment 1

For this assignment I chose to analyze the design of the poster for the Japanese film, “My Neighbor Totoro” by Hayao Miyazaki.  Generally speaking, I am attracted to beautifully drawn animations, so it’s no wonder why I enjoy watching his films.

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Color

My first observation was the subtle difference between the Japanese and English posters. Other than the language of the title, the differences are the font type for the title and the color scheme. It begs me to question, what is the significance of the color choices. We had discussed the appeal to green in the last class, as many people said green was there favorite color. Green can represent many moods depending on the shade, e.g. nature, peace, excitement, wealth. In the Japanese poster the greens seem to represent more of nature and tranquility. The poster seems to be almost made with water colors and therefore has a soft touch as if the colors were casually swept on the poster with a paintbrush.

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In the English version, however, the color scheme is based on reds:

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We see softer shades here as well. Similar to the Japanese version, the dominant shade is the lightest. Each poster share the dark shade that takes up the bottom half. Even after singling out each color, I still am curious why red for English (American) and Green for  Japanese. Often when a movie is translated into a new language, the poster differs from the original, as it will reflect the culture of the translated language. However, for these, the two are identical except for the color scheme.

Composition

I find that the composition of this poster is very balanced–the bottom half is very dark, whereas the top half is very light showing the softness of nature. The trees act like arrows, and literally point to the top half, which has a more tranquil feel.

The gridlines below show an equal balance of space. Although most of the poster is symmetrical, there are aspects that show movement, e.g. the birds flying and the larger person standing next to the smaller, and the mountain landscape. These subtle imbalances of the symmetry reflect the continuity of nature, which seems to be a theme.

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Fonts

Although I wasn’t able to identify the type font of the Japanese title, the letters have a very simple precision, making them bold but not overwhelming. The font for the English poster is in Seta Reta NF (this is my first time ever talking about fonts), but what I learned is that this font is clean, crisp, and elegant. Visually different typefaces, but giving off a similar message.

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Hierarchy

There’s a lot going on in this poster, yet I don’t find it overwhelming. I am first attracted to the face inside the dark section of the bottom. At a glance it’s not clear what the shape is, however once the face is seen, then it leads to seeing the entire entire character, which then draws the attention to the title. I personally like designs that have hidden messages and the fact the ears of the character, Totoro are shown as trees signify a nature theme, and in turn brings the eye to the top half of the poster.