CD Designing

1 02 2012

Recently i have been approached by a man called Paul Rouse, he is an business man and used to be in big bands in the 60’s. He asked me to design the case and cd for an album he had recently produced for his wife’s 65th birthday. He had already assigned someone to do a sketch for the front cover, but i had been asked to do the rest of the designs, which i felt very privileged to accept.

First i thought of a main colour scheme which was a sky blue, which i informed the man who was doing to sketch, and he drew his sketch around the colour schemes i sent him.

Here is the sketch the artist sent me

He did an absolutely  fantastic job with the sketch and stuck exactly to my colour schemes. Now i could start designing round his sketch, i contacted Paul to try and get some pictures of him playing in the 60’s, and luckily for me, he had 4 or 5 pictures that i could scan in and use in the CD booklet.

The pictures were very helpful and he also asked me to use them in a certain order and in a specific position in the booklet.

I have finally finished the cd and here are some screen shots of the final finished design, i am very proud of the CD and my client was also very pleased with the final design.


Collaborative Work Placement – Presentation

8 06 2011

For my presentation, i decided to use prezi, here is a link to my prezi and also the embeded version.

Collaborative Work Placement – Critical Evaluation

7 06 2011
In this evaluation i am going to tell you what i have done, how i could have improved it, what went wrong, what went right, and what i have learnt.
First of all, one of things i have never done is look for a client, or even work for one before. I approached my client myself in person and asked her if she would like a product making. I think i did this the right way, as you can’t always get your point across as you wish with a letter or email, and you wont always get a reply. I also think my clients good communication and commitment also helped my progress.
I then moved on to taking photos of my surrounding area. I received some requests and suggestions off my client and off other people as to what needed to be in the calender, i took everyones advise in and i believe i took some very good photographs. Due to the pictures being taken on a camera that wasn’t as good quality as i had hoped, i had to do a little bit of editing on photoshop just to touch them up a little and make them a lot more acceptable for a calender.
One of that hardest things i had to do was collecting the past photos to put in my calender, half way through i almost scrapped the idea, but after persistent emails and letter to the right people, i finally collected most of the photos i needed. In the end i emailed about 15 people and i only received emails back off 3, who were all very reliable and supplied me with a lot of old photos, all in good quality. Although i had a lot of photos off people i still didn’t have enough, and ended up having to take photos of old photos that people had sent me in frames, which actually turned out very well. If i were do this again, i would certainly start looking for the old photographs first as they are very hard to get hold of, and there is hardly any on the internet.
The ones i got off the internet are linked here:
I asked permission off the maker of the website to use these photos, and he happily accepted.
The next process i did in the making of my calender was the designing off my calenders months, as i had already stared to create the layout of the calendar in photoshop, i though i should try and use a different program to create the months for my calender. I used indesign, at first i found it very complicated to use, as it had been a long time since i used the program.
But after the first few days i got used to it and got through them very quickly so i could start arranging my calender into different styles to show my client.
I met up with my client in my local pub and i showed her and some of the other village parish councilors my progress, i showed her 3 different styles for the calender and she gave me feedback and on each of them and told me which one was her favorite. Here are all 3 styles.
She told me that she enjoyed the second one the best due to its simplicity, and we agreed that my target audience would definetly enjoy that one more, as they would write birthdays/appointments/important dates in the squares. After hour meeting, unfortunately my client went for a week away which was very inconvenient, but i sent her some emails of the finished calender for when she got back.
I then went on to make a front cover for my calender and make an important dates page. I started by going out with my camera and looking around my village for a photo that would look brilliant on the front cover. I took 2 good ones and also sent those to my client to get her opinion on them. Here are the photos.
She recommended i put both of them on the page in a collage like design, i agreed with her and sent her a few drafts of the finished page. I then put all of my finished calender pages onto my memory stick and printed them out at college, they all turned out amazing. I lied them all out together so i could proof read them all and make sure they were perfect, so i send it off to get bound.
Once i had checked about 20 times i decided it was ready to take it to get bound. At first i tried to do it myself, but unfortunately it didn’t go to plan so i had to start again. I rang up a friend who works in the mailing business and he said they had a machine that could bind my calender for me, so i went to his workplace and ended up doing it there. The bound that i used isn’t quite the right style as it doesn’t have a hook on it like a conventional calender, but the calender still looks very professional and well made.
I showed my client some pictures of my finished calender and she seemed very pleased, although she hasn’t seen it properly yet, she has sent me a letter of appreciation for completing the project. I will include all of the letters she has sent me in my project folder.

Collaborative Work Placement – Design Process

7 06 2011

After getting the go ahead from my client, i started designing my calender.

The first thing i did was a few sketches of calenders that i could make, i did the sketches on a layout pad to put into a folder with some other plans i did, such as a mood board and a small thought shower.

The next thing i did was decide on a layout and style, then go out and take some pictures, overall i took ever 200 photos using my Cannon G9, it isn’t the best camera but i think it worked very well! I chose my favorite 12 photos and then had to look for similar old photos. I emailed a lot of older villages to see if anybody had any old photos of the village, some sent me pictures via email, some gave me pictures in frames, and some didn’t give me any at all. I chose my favorite 12 that matched my modern photos, i also had to go out and take more photos to match the old ones.

Here are some photos i decided not to use.

I then put my photos together on photoshop, but i made the actual calender on indesign.

I believe the design of my calender is very successful and the feedback i received from my client was very helpful, and made it easier to complete my product.

Collaborative Work Placement – Brief

4 06 2011

My aim for this project is to produce something for a client, i searched around for a client for a while, and asked a lot of people if they needed anything doing, a lot of people said no. I asked a member of my local parish council, and she asked me if i could produce a calender, to possibly go on sale in the village post office, displaying photos of the village. I accepted.

I first sent her a letter arranging how the calender would look, she replied a few days later, giving me a list of buildings and other things she would like in the calender, she gave me free reign on the size, and style of the calender. I then met up with her, with my camera to show her some of the shots i had taken, she chose the ones she liked the most. I also showed her the proposed style and layout of the calender which she liked.

Here are some screen shots of what i showed her..

As i have lived in the village for a long time, i know a lot of people who still have photos of what it looked like about 60 years ago, so i came up with the idea to do a “Past and Present” calender. I would take a picture of what the building or scenery looks like now, and then find a picture from years ago of the same thing. I proposed this idea to my client and she loved it, although she gave me some suggestions that could improve my idea or change it a little. She proposed i try and take photos from the same angle as the old photo and that i try and get pictures of the village that hardly anybody has seen, to make the calender unique and original.

There has been quite a lot of communication between me and my client, more talking than via email or letter, and i believe she will love the final piece when i show it to her.

EIM Assignment – Expressive Image (Final Piece)

25 05 2011

“You also need to present one final piece, which involves a great deal of imagination and creativity. This piece will need you to use your photography skills, your research skills and your application skills.”

For my final piece, i took a lot of inspiration from the simple but effective work of Alex Katz, the way he paints with such simple brush strokes and shadowing is very skillful and interesting. I decided to do a self portrait of myself, trying my very hardest to use his style. i took a picture of myself, by just using Photo Booth, and then sketched a light outline of my face on a canvas, the canvas is 12 x 16 inches, which was the closest i could get to a3. I kept referencing back to the original photo i took to try and get the best shading and colours i could.

Here is the original picture.

In Katz’ paintings, he doesn’t always use a background, he just uses the figure in the middle of the canvas and just colours the background in a colour he see’s worthy, this is what i decided to do. The image i took most inspiration from was “Ted Berrigan, 1967” (below) in this painting he uses a lot of flat colours and tone, he wants you to think of the human face differently, than just looking at a photo or portrait, a lot like what Andy Worhol did in his paintings. He chooses colours that work together and he also paints with a lot of looseness and flow. His ambition was to give the viewer a visual experience by using bold colours for the background, and slightly toned down ones for the figure.

For my painting, i used acrylic paints on a canvas, trying to make long flowing brush strokes and keeping the figure as simple as possible, without taking away the facial features. When i finished my canvas, i scanned it into my computer and edited it on photoshop, adding more features that Alex Katz would use.

I then imported my piece into photoshop to create my expressive image, i was looking through some filters to make the painting more in the style of Alex Katz. First i reduced the noise on the picture, and made it look like there was minimum brush strokes on the image, i then cut out a few individual pieces and edited them on there own, another thing i have done is added some glass reflections onto my glasses, just like Alex Katz has done. I believe my photoshop edited version is a lot better, obviously because i’ve edited it.

Some of the problems i had during this final piece where that i don’t own an easel, so painting on a canvas was fairly difficult for a while, until a friend kindly borrowed me one to use. Another problem i can across was the paint brushes i bought, were not to a very good standard, so the bristles just fell off the end and straight onto my canvas. The last problem i can across, was me, im not that great at drawing and had to start again twice. The painting took about a 2 days to complete fully, and forever to dry.

Here are some pictures of me having to paint the canvas, without and easel

And here are some screenshots of my editing, it is a little minimal, but you can tell the difference from the canvas to the photoshop image. I was also put a picture of the photoshop image and the original canvas next to each other so you might be able to see the difference.

If i could do anything better with this project, i would focus a lot more on the challenges, and not just put half effort into them. I would also produce my painting to a higher quality.

EIM Assignment – Expressive Image (Research)

19 05 2011

For this project i will be looking into expressive images of the face, and trying to create my own, in the style of one of the artists i am going to research.

I will be researching 3 artists, which are

  • Alex Katz
  • Jean-Michel Basquiat
  • Fernando Botero

I have chosen these artists as they all have there own style of drawing faces, and i would like to adapt some of there styles into my own word, and find out some information about them.

Alex Katz

Alex Katz was born on July 24, 1927, and is a well known American figurative artist, most associated with the Pop Art movement, In particular, paintings of people.

Katz had his first one-person show in 1954, an exhibition of paintings at the Roko Gallery in New York. In the early 1960s, influenced by films, television, and billboard advertising, Katz began painting large-scale paintings, often with dramatically cropped faces. Beginning in the late 1950s, Katz developed a technique of painting on cut panels, first of wood, then aluminum, calling them “cutouts”.

After 1964, Katz increasingly portrayed groups of people. He would continue painting groups into the 1970s, portraying the social world of painters, poets, critics, and other colleagues that surrounded him. He began designing sets and costumes for choreographer Paul Taylor in the early 1960s, and he has painted many images of dancers throughout the years.

Katz painted portraits for over 50 years, he had a very unique style, one which i really enjoy. As far as i know, Alex Katz wasn’t that much of a well know artist, but i have seen his work before and enjoy how he paints his portraits and landscapes. His portraits are quite cartoon like, as he was producing his work in the Pop Art era but in contrast to the pop artists, Alex Katz found his own inspiration in the literal rendition of human figures. What i also like about his portraits, is that he doesn’t draw a background or landscape behind the figure, he just colours it, so the eyes are just focused on the actual figure. He also uses shadows on the face a lot, and puts a lot of detail into the eyes

Alex Katz is still well known in the art world and has won many awards for his work. He also has his work on show in some of the most famous galleries in America such as, Museum of Modern Art, New York, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Art Institue of Chicago,  Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, DC  and The New Orleans Museum of Art.

Jean-Michel Basquiat

Jean-Michel Basquiat was born on December 22, 1960 in Brooklyn, NY. His mother encouraged Basquiat’s artistic interests at an early age, taking him on regular trips to local art museums in New York.

Jean Michel Basquiat mixed poetic social dialog into his artwork. Although his public art remained anonymous for some time, it began to attract attention from members of the community and Basquait began selling some of his artwork on street corners and at clubs.

As you can see from the pictures, the are very abstract, but you can still see they are faces and bodies, his influences on art include his avid reading of French, Spanish and English texts, his interest in cartoon drawings, Alfred Hitchcock films, cars and comic books, such as MAD magazine. Mix all those things together, and you can kind of see why Basquiat’s drawing and paintings are so weird. One of the reasons i love Basquiat’s work is because it is so original, he has a unique style, not similar to any other artists of his era and uses such bright and vibrant colours, drawing your eye to his paintings.

In 1980, international art dealers began to take notice and started featuring Basquiat’s work in shows throughout the world, and in the spring of 1981, a SoHo art dealer by the name of Annina Nosei gave Basquait basement space to do his work, often selling pieces before they were finished.

By 1984, many of Basquait’s friends were concerned about his excessive drug use and his change of subjects within his art. On August 12, 1988 Jean Michel Basquiat overdosed on a combination of heroin and cocaine and unfortunately passed away at the age of just 27.

His work is still being displayed and sold across the world, the record price for a Basquiat painting was made on May 15, 2007, when an untitled Basquiat work from 1981 sold in New York for $14.6 million.


Fernando Botero

Fernando Botero was born on April 19, 1932, in Medellín, Colombian. He is an artist artist known for his paintings and sculptures of inflated human and animal shapes. While still a teenager, he began painting and was inspired by the pre-Columbian and Spanish colonial art, but his influences later in life were Francisco de Goya and Diego Velázquez.

Throughout the 1950s Botero began experimenting with proportion and size. When he moved to New York City in 1960, he had developed his trademark style: the depiction of large humans and animals. In these works he referenced Latin-American folk art in his use of flat, bright colour and boldly outlined forms. He favored a smooth look in his paintings, eliminating the appearance of brushwork and texture.

In 1965 Botero’s fully developed plastic style of painting first became visible in his paintings. In 1966 the painter traveled to his first important European exhibition, followed by his first exhibition at a US museum at the Milwaukee Art Center in December, which lead to his breakthrough in the America.

I enjoy Botero’s work a lot, i own a replica canvas of his myself. I enjoy his work purely because of his confident and bold his characters look, and how much he pays attention to facial expressions and the objects the figures may be holding. my favorite piece that he has produced is “Mona Lisa (La Gioconda)”, purely because of its comedy values and attention to detail.

Today Fernando Botero divides his time between Paris, New York and Tuscany. His paintings, sculptures, and drawings are exhibited and represented in museum collections throughout the world.