Archive | October, 2011

Opera Digital Quilt Tile

28 Oct

It didn’t take as long as I thought it would. Done it completely different from the original design.

This was the design from sketchbook. It’s taking the word ‘Opera’, and using the ‘3D shadow’ made from the letters. Apologies for the messiness — it was filled in with black paint and the brush I used was unfortunately not very precise. The layout isn’t great as I did the design quickly in class.

This one below is a digital version (2nd draft). I done it in a completely different colour and composition. I used Illustrator and Photoshop CS5.

Found that the colour makes the white letters stand out, but it seemed a bit plain. So I came out with this, the final design, which was done by duplicating the letters:



The Opera & Banquet

27 Oct

As I mentioned in my last post relating to uni work, I will be talking about the new assignments for both Typography and Research & Reference modules.

Typography: Opera poster x3

Based on three operas, Cosi fan Tutte, Don Giovanni, Le Nozze di Figaro, all being played for the Winter Season 2012 at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, London.

All three posters must have no imagery, but the text must be incorporated as the imagery itself so composition and the type of typeface will have to be taken into account.

We also have to design 3 tiles, then pick one to be put into a digital quilt from the groups we’ll be in. The design has to be based on the word ‘Opera’. I’ve done the design by hand but eventually I’ll digitise it and post it up here. Haven’t yet done the poster designs. Most likely do it tomorrow as my other module is being taken as first priority for the moment until I get the all clear that it’s A-OK.

Now, for Research & Reference, we have to produce a banquet: plate, cutlery, menu, napkin, napkin ring and three other items of our choosing, which will be a drinking glass/cup, placemat and coaster. This banquet has to be based on an artist/designer of our choosing, and I have decided to do English designer and Arts & Crafts founder William Morris. The website provided is based on the company he set up, called Morris & Co. back in 1875.

I’ll admit, I didn’t think of doing this artist. It came about when my mum was watching this programme called Flog It! (which helps people to value and sell unwanted items they have at auctions) and they had a 10 minute or so interval which talked about William Morris. So I guess tv helps in some ways of educating people :3

Anyways, I found quite a few interesting facts, and realised that a bed duvet/curtains in my parent’s bedroom was based on a design by Morris (this was my reaction when I realised it:  :O ), called Willow Bough (1887). As his designs are quite well known, they’re used a lot in today’s printing materials such as duvets and curtains as I’ve mentioned.

As for the information I found, I read how William Morris disapproved the Industrial Revolution, especially the machinery as it was exploited for profit and because of that, moral values of people who worked and crafted goods declined. So as an inspiration of individuality and the craftsmanship of the medieval period, he revived the traditional craft techniques that were once abandoned by the Revolution, proving that you don’t need to use machinery to make such exquisite works. This is what I found quite admirable.

I also found out that Morris also had a passion for hand-made objects, which I will incorporate into the design of my banquet. I have an idea already of what to do, mainly based on Strawberry Thief (1883) and using modelling/baking clay and painting and gluing… Basically making little tiny thrushes and Strawberries and placing them in accordance to what I’m thinking in my head right now.

Oh and just so you know, the creation of Strawberry Thief came about when thrushes kept stealing berries in the garden from Morris’ Kelmscott Manor home in Oxfordshire. Willow Bough is based on the willow trees growing on the banks of the River Thames. I think somewhat it’s quite sweet how the creations started out.

William Morris also worked with the colours: madder red, peacock-blue, russet-brown, sage green and soft yellow. So I’ll be working with all or most of the colours.

And that’s about it. I’m quite looking forward to the banquet, but not so much of the 1500 word essay we’ll have to do….

Anyways, I’m off to do more work now. Try and finish it off so I can have a weekend of video gaming with boyfriend! (Although I am sort of doubting it will happen this time around… T^T)

Snail on a Grape

27 Oct

Isn’t it strangely cute? It looks like it’s going around the Grape World ^___^

It’s from grapes in our garden. My dad noticed the baby snail (and many others) and I had to take pictures!

v My Favourite v



Wouldn’t It Be Nice….

26 Oct

I LOVE this advert

Been showing on tv for a few weeks now. It’s a great way to cheer yourself up and bring a smile to your face any time of any day =]

Every time I hear/see it I have to stop myself doing whatever I am doing (even if I’m running a bit late) and watch it. It’s fantastic. End.

Heart Grenades & Alphabet Soup

20 Oct

Since I haven’t got much this week, thought I’d do a bit of posting. It has again been a little while since I’ve last posted with work taking over, but I’ve finished the first projects from both Typography and Research & Reference.

For Typography, as you know, we had to make a punkzine based on a contemporary punk band, and I chose a band I was into when I was a teenager (still am a bit to this day): Green Day. The punkzine has to be in black and white as when it was produced at a broad scale, production costs were taken into account. It was originally made using images, typography etc stuck or drawn on to the zine and then photocopied to unify it.

Anyways, I planned it out as being A5, folded and cut from A3-A4, and stapled together. It consists of 20 sheets, and I am quite proud of it. The typography for the title (which I called Heart Grenade based on a well-known image from the band), is from one of their albums, Kerplunk!, called Green Days. Another typography, used for one of the mini posters, is another one used in another album, American Idiot, called Dirty Headline. The rest of the typography is done by my hand, making my style of writing more angular and ‘rock/punk-ish/scratchy’. A lot of my research came from Green Day Authority and albums I have at home.

Below is a slideshow of the whole Heart Grenade Punkzine*, with the first slide showing a page from the original copy, and the last slide showing an A3 poster that is meant to advertise the punkzine:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

*Note: I made up the telephone number and website address, and apologies for the use of one bit of foul language in the zine and poster. It was needed for the project due to it being a name from one of the band’s albums.

So that’s it for Typography for now. Onto Research & Reference.

For this it is, as you know, Alphabet Soup, where we had to pick a couple of exercises to do. In the end I did five:

1. How would you illustrate these lines from a poem by Seamus Heaney:

The letters of the alphabet were trees,

The capitals were in full bloom.

The lines of script like briars coiled in ditches.

I illustrated the images by hand, but I may develop them a bit more and digitise them using actual typography. Research was conducted and shown in previous blog.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

2.  Many letters were once pictures. Chinese characters began as animals, landscapes, even facial expressions. Here is the symbol for ‘middle‘. How does it illustrate its meaning? Invent a symbol for the following words: Around; Above; Argument.

I first researched on Chinese characters and came up with this:

Chinese Characters are graphemes used in writing Chinese (hanzi), Japanese (kanji), Korean (hanja) and Vietnamese (called han tu), as well as other languages. It is the oldest and continuously used writing system in the world.

The Chinese character symbol for ‘middle’ illustrated its meaning by having a line go down the rectangular-box shape in the middle of it, making each side equal in half. 

I then looked up on the etymology of the three words:

  1. Around = Middle English from a- (Old English a- (“on, at”)) + Middle English round (“circle, round”).
  2. Above = Old English abufan.
  3. Argument = Middle English < Anglo – Norman < Old French < Latin ‘argumentum’.

These are the symbols I produced for the three words:

The first symbol, around, was done in this way as I wanted to combine circle, and the movement of going around, almost in a spiral state.

The second, above, reminds me somewhat of a nose and mouth. But it was done displaying an arrow-like shape on top of a curved line.

The last one, argument, I took into account facial expressions that are formed in cartoons when anger is shown. The teeth tend to be gritted together or show pointed teeth, representing when an argument is getting a bit heated and people tend to hold back or shout out what they feel, giving the sense of the claws coming out (or something like that).

3. Create an anagram by playing around with the order of the letters in a word. Find words whose meaning completely changes when you take away a single letter.

Research was done on anagrams: Anagrams were a type of word play and were popular in Europe throughout the Middle Ages. Known as “Themuru”, or changing, it was used to find the hidden meaning(s) in names.


Cow ~  – C  ~ Ow                  Brother ~  – r  ~ Bother        Hair ~  – H  ~ Air

Thatch ~  – T  ~ Hatch        Three ~  – h  ~ Tree               Ward ~  – d  ~ War

Lion ~  – L  ~ Ion                  Table ~ – T  ~ Able                Link ~  – L  ~ Ink

Plate ~  – P  ~ Late               Box ~  – B  ~ Ox                     Glass ~  – G  ~ Lass

Gears ~  – G  ~ Ears             Cause ~  – u  ~ Case              Tablet ~  – t  ~ Table

Taxi ~  – i  ~ Tax                   Cup ~  – C  ~ Up                     Down ~  – d  ~ Own

Shop ~  – S  ~ Hop               Niece ~  – e (1st)  ~ Nice       Mother ~  – M  ~ Other

Switch ~  – S  ~ Witch         Face ~  –  F  ~ Ace                   Sword ~  – S  ~ Word

I noticed that most of the words I found tend to rhyme with each other if a letter is removed from it.

4. What does typeface communicate? Find examples of typefaces that appear political, romantic, comic, childish, scientific etc.

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5. Think about the surfaces that letters can appear on. Find examples of letters stitched onto fabric, tattoed onto skin, shaved into hair, carved into a tree, written on a bus window, printed on a poster, glowing in a neon sign, etc. What does each different material do to the letter’s form and associations?

Vodpod videos no longer available.

So that’s about it for the assignments. Off to bed now, it’s past midnight and it took me quite a while to do all those slideshows and sort out problems with uploading. It’s finally all done and I’m going to talk about the new assignments next time.

Anyways, g’night! ^_^