Word-Final

I continued taking photographs so I can have a wide range that I could pick from for my final. I used both natural and artificial lighting and was still trying out different arrangements of the things around my word.

I was struggling to pick a final that shows my entire word and some of the things around it. I asked several people for opinions and in the end I made my own decision based on what they mentioned. I was having a hard time picking one of those 3.

The ones above have a lot of space and one is really bright that it looks too edited. I made up my mind to go back to the pictures I took in the beginning without the natural light and try adjusting it in Photoshop. It actually worked and I went around asking people which one they thought looked better. Gezzal mentioned that those three are way too messy and the composition isn’t well thought of.

This is the final photograph after fixing the red cast.

Final.
Printing issue (it changed the colours and it’s dark)

This project taught me a lot. We began with researching the definitions of words,picking a word and then looking for materials.  I wouldn’t have achieved what I wanted or at least close to what I had in mind without this research. We moved on to learning a rule in type which is kerning and I’m glad I know that now. I’m still not an expert at it but I think I will be able to understand it more during the course. Moreover, the experimentation I did was a good way to help me decide on what I want and what I was trying to show with my word. I was having a hard time with the sugar because I had to make sure it does not over heat in order get the right consistency. I began to learn that patience is something that I need to work on and I need to take breaks when I’m frustrated. I was taking this way too seriously and would panic if something did not turn out the way I wanted it to be. The breaks gave me space away from my work and gave me time to think of how I could overcome some issues. I now know that I always need to look for solutions or have another plan if something does not work out.

I loved working with large letters but realised how tricky it is when I decided to turn them into lollipops. The foam board was difficult to cut until I changed to cutting with a smaller blade. It was a bit more precise and I could control it better than a big blade. The last part of this project was thinking of a composition and taking the photographs. I found it hard to work with light and shadows. However, Al jazzi and Star were very kind to help during this final phase. I enjoyed working with sugar and struggled at certain points but this project was defintley a great experience.

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Week 7

During the week before the final was due, I continued making the lollipops. As I mentioned previously, the sugar kept crystallising and also they were getting very sticky if I left them out for a while. I am satisfied with the final result of all the lollipops and I tried my best to stick with the shape of the letter. I can see now that the idea of trying to represent something sweet shows more than my first ones of just the sugar and sprinkles.

They bend and I lose the shape of the letter when I keep them out for too long.

We had a critique in class where we were split into groups and our classmates would comment and suggest ideas that could improve our work. I had some rough photos taken of the composition I was thinking of for my final and the background. A classmate suggested that I could maybe take the picture in a candy shop and someone would be holding the lollipops. Another classmate was very kind enough to get me pink salt that looked like sugar in which I could add in my photograph. Some said that the background of the silicon matt makes it way too crowded and takes the attention away from the word. It does not stand out as much.

After the critique,we were asked to come back in next class with a professional photograph taken and tiled. We were taught how to adjust the lighting by using levels and I found that very helpful. The photograph should be refined if needed and should be high quality.

Al jazzi, Star and I decided to set up an area to take our photographs in. We “borrowed” the light source from a maths class and stuck together some white pieces of foam board. I took photographs and they also helped with setting the lights in different angles and playing with my composition. I really appreciate the help from both of them and I was able to get feedback. At times I thought that the composition worked but they would tell me straight up that it doesn’t and give reasons why for example the corners are filled with too many things or it looks tight. I loved the honesty. We worked with each other and I think that I wouldn’t have been able to notice certain things without them. Also, I was making a mistake of taking a close up of the lollipops but then I took a photograph of the entire composition so I can crop it however I want in Photoshop.

Below are some photographs with the silicon matt and without it. Also, with the pink salt that looks like sugar.

  

I took the one below to class for the final critique and each one of us put theirs up on the board. I learned how to use the stamp tool to clean up and refine my photograph. There was a broken e that I made twice and it kept breaking so I fixed it by using this tool. The feedback I received was that the lighting made everything very red and I should work on that for my final.

 

Week 6

During this week, I attempted to form the crystals to see if they would actually look like sugar. I was disappointed with the result. I tried using boric acid and let it form for around 8 hours in the water. There was a bit of crystal forming around the pipe cleaner but when I took it out, it just flaked. It did not look good at all and the colour of the pipe cleaner changed.

I then moved on to creating the sugar letters that I was previously making but in red. I thought that it would look more like candy and if it had sprinkles. However, after discussing during class it was suggested that I should try to make something that actually shows it is sweet or sugary such as lollipops. I am planning to use the same technique that I started of with but make them into small lollipops.

I got some sticks and cut out the shapes of the letters from foam board to make my lollipops. For some reason, I had a difficulty with the sugar this time as it kept crystallising and I had to repeat it 3 times. Moreover, I couldn’t figure out a way to stick my i so I made the dot of the i as a separate lollipop. I am going to wrap the first letter which is b and keep the other lollipops unwrapped in my photograph.

Basically, this week revolved around picking one final idea and beginning to make it. It’s very tricky when the letters are small and I have to be careful when I slide them out of the foam board as they are fragile.

100 Things-Final

I tried using different backgrounds but it did not look as attractive as the previous one. It looked horrible. I scanned some things that relate to my 100 things and the story that I learned about narcissus such as mirrors,leaves and some other random objects to see if they could fit in the poster. I decided to stick with the background that I had previously. Moreover, I added some leaves and a green patch of cotton in my collage. I tried creating dimension for the perfume bottle but I’m unsure of that.

 

We had our last critique before the due date for the final poster. We were asked to put it on the board and it should be tiled. It was tricky to tile and cutting it neatly was a bit stressful. After printing I realised that my background is pixelated so I changed by printing the painting and then scanning it in higher resolution.

The comments I received for the poster above were that the outline of the shape that I created makes it too busy. The background was too dark when I printed and  I should maybe consider a warmer palette. The text was not visible and it was mentioned that I should play with opacity and colour.

Final Poster

Week 6

After beginning to design the previous posters that I did not like at all, I decided to make a collage. It just popped into my mind and I remembered that I really loved making them last year the most. I would want my poster to look mismatched but in a mesmerising way.

As I mentioned previously I was inspired by the meaning of the perfume therefore I decided to work with parts of several paintings of narcissus. Also, I learned that my perfume has a variety of scents especially jasmine and Bulgarian rose that I wanted to incorporate in my poster. I chose a section of the paintings scenery to be my background because I find it interesting and allows the viewer to sort of think of what the poster could mean. I put a silhouette of my perfume without the brand name on it and it created a nice and unusual shape that was placed infront of the background.

I chose his body to be the flowers to show that his life revolved around his looks and beauty. Flowers are the ingredients of the perfume and they represent appeal,beauty and love.

The posters above are the ones that I put on the board for our first critique. It was mentioned that the one on the left is busy and doesn’t focus on the shape that I made and the collage in the centre. It was suggested that maybe I can combine both to make one poster that is more balanced and not too noisy.

After combining both posters.

We then had a second critique during this week and after having a discussion with Fatma. I began to realise that there is still something missing and we came to a conclusion that I need to add more things that show my journey and what I learned. I could maybe remove the background and scan some of the things that I came up with in my 100 things and also I could add more to the collage.

The critiques are important to me as I get the chance to see my classmates work. I can identify what is working and what is not working in others work but I find it difficult to point them out in mine. Therefore, others opinions really matter and I believe they help us learn and grow. I learned that making decisions is hard and when creating a poster we should work with space,dimension,hierarchy and scale. It should be thoughtful and professional and in this poster it should not be random objects placed everywhere.

Week 5

Our final comparisons and word image image word were up on the board. We had a quick critique during class about the difficulties we faced during this second phase and what we learned. A student in class mentioned that you know you’re making effective work when it initiates conversation and I think that is true. It is not powerful if it does not communicate to the viewer.

The final phase of this project has been revealed. We are asked to create a poster that shows our journey of this project. It should include what we learnt about our object and proves that it does not have one function only anymore. It is essential to make design decisions now and make a poster that communicates. It must be something that shows relationships and shows the 3 levels (hook,keeper,info).

After introducing the final phase, we came to class with ideas and rough sketches of our poster. I wrote down the things that I learned from my object (perfume) at first and then moved on to sketching. We had a chance to share our ideas with our classmates and I told them that I was really interested in the Greek mythology that has to do with narcissus a hunter who ends up falling in love with himself. I knew about this by researching what my perfume means as it is called narciso.

I then began working on illustrator and made a couple but I do not like any. I feel like there is nothing that’s interesting, they’re boring and unattractive. I can’t seem to figure out what’s missing yet. Moreover, I was finding it difficult to not make it seem like I’m advertising the perfume.

Week 5

We came back at the beginning of this week with experiments. We had to try out different materials with type and I chose to experiment with the word saccharine which means overly sweet. I also chose to work with the typeface HelveticaNeue.

Writing down the things I thought of that relate to the word saccharine.

I researched on Pinterest on ways in which I could work with sugar. I was interested in sugar glass the most and watched some videos on Youtube on how to make it. I went out to the grocery shop as well to look at the ingredients or candy or anything that could work. I got some candy, sugar, a thermometer, a silicon mat and other things related to baking.

I began by trying out the letter r with gummy bears and  made sure to stick to the form of it. I printed the outline of the letter and started sticking the gummy bears. The end result is nice but only from the sides and I wasn’t really feeling it when I took a picture from above. The gummy bears didn’t show much.

I moved on to trying out the sugar glass. I couldn’t find corn syrup in the grocery shop as it is one of the ingredients that is needed to make the glass. However, I still gave it a shot without the corn syrup. The most important part of this process is to keep an eye on was the temperature and it had to be 300 degrees fahrenheit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I then remembered last years work with plaster and how we used foam board that was coated with vaseline or oil before to prevent the plaster from sticking to it. I decided to try it out with my sugar since I had to stick to a specific letter form. I printed the outline of the letter and cut it out. I then put it on the foam board and outlined the shape and cut it. I was left with the negative shape of the letter on the foam board. I coated the sides with vaseline and poured the sugar.

I made a mistake by not waiting for the sugar to completely set and removed the foam board and it didn’t look neat. I did this for two letters and they both weren’t smooth and did not have perfect edges.

I tried it for the third time and I waited for the sugar to completely set. This time I added a few drops of food colouring. It came out perfectly and was smoother than the previous ones.

During the discussion in class, it was mentioned that the experiment with the gummy bears didn’t show from above and they were only visible from a certain angle. Moreover, I was thinking of making sugar sticks but it took around 7 days to form and the professor suggested I look at a powder called alum and also I can make anything that looks like sugar, it doesn’t necessarily have to be made of sugar. I researched ways in which I can make crystals and found that it can be formed with alum powder, borax and epsom salt. I couldn’t find alum powder anywhere but I found boric acid which is the same as borax and also epsom salt in the pharmacy. Therefore, my next experiments will be attempting to form crystals that look like sugar.

During our working day, I was going through some typgoraphy books in the library with my classmates.

I began to learn during this week that it takes time to master something and patience. I definitely did not have any patience with my first two experiments with sugar and I believe I need to calm down, relax and take my time without rushing. Moreover, I am changing my word to bitter to create more interest instead of using the word saccharine.

Week 4

We spread all our words on the floor outside of class and we were looking at each typeface. The differences between them were pointed out and it was nice to see how the spaces between letters can vary. Some of the Arabic ones looked handwritten and some didn’t which I personally liked more.

We then were asked to go back to them and for next class bring in two words from the list that we want to work with. We had to fix them up a bit by using kerning and leading which we were taught during class. Kerning is the space between two letters and tracking is the space between all letters. Also, setting solid means when there is equal point size and equal leading. The whole purpose of it is that some words have letters that are way too close or way too far from each other and by using kerning and leading on Illustrator we would be able to create a word that looks balanced in a way and doesn’t seem too crowded.

After this class, we were to pick one Latin word and one Arabic word. We had to edit the typeface and make it as appealing as possible to the eye and the two words I picked are saccharine and قبيح.

I am glad I learned these skills and I believe they are essential and I wouldn’t forget them whenever I am working with type from now.

Week 4

During week 4, we came to class with the equations we were working on at the end of the previous week. The comparisons made perfect sense to me but after we got into groups of 4 to discuss them, I realised they did not make sense. I don’t think I was understanding what we had to achieve yet and I was making it way too complicated. My classmates gave me suggestions and ideas of how I could change my comparisons or improve them.

Below are the ones that I made and the main issue is that I use many meanings of the sign instead of isolating one meaning. Going over the definitions of the oppositions again in class helped for example elaboration is complex, rich and extravagant whereas reduction is simplified and minimal. I was constantly going over these definitions and I tried fixing my mistakes by thinking of one meaning only.

The one’s that weren’t really good and did not make sense

Below are the ones that I did again and refined. The bee was a drawing and I substituted it to a close-up of a bee’s abdomen. I was thinking of the word sting. A real and solid object that represents sting to me is a needle and an abstract way to represent sting could be a pinch. The second one of the sheep was made with cotton in my 100 things so I used a photograph instead. The in-class critique and comments from the professor helped me to generate an idea for this one by telling me to think of what sheep are known for which is herding. Therefore, literally sheep’s have this sort of herd instinct and metaphorically on the left I put a photograph of many people doing the same action. Humans don’t go in herds but they tend to adopt one another’s ideas and behaviors just like a herd of sheep. The last one is the watermelon which was a drawing with actual seeds stuck on the paper so I changed that to someone cutting the watermelon. A reduced depiction for cutting a watermelon is the slices cut and an elaborated one could be the watermelon cut in a creative way.

 

The word image image word was the second part of this second phase which I enjoyed more. We had to pick 2 other things from our 100 and refine them. We thought of semantics and were supposed to make relationships just like the ones I did above. We had to find another photograph that fit or worked well with the one we chose from the 100 things and then one each side pick a binary opposition from our original list that goes well with both images.

I learnt that we can create effective work by communicating visually and in a simple way. It does not necessarily have to be complex and smart. The best things to use as the professor mentioned in class with step one of this second phase are verbs and adjectives and that tip actually worked well. I learnt how to isolate meaning and join things together or make strong relationships. The one thing that is still annoying about myself is that I always tend to say this is wrong and this is right straight away and I genuinely hope the way I think changes in the weeks to come.

Week 3

We pinned our 100 things during our first class of Week 3 on a 1m by 1m board. It took a while to put them up and organise each pair, however, I felt proud of myself for getting a 100 THINGS done. It was very overwhelming the entire process of trying to make and think. Looking at the work up on the board made me realise how much I experimented and how the struggle was worth it.

There are some materials that I never used or worked with before like cutting a wig,breaking my glasses and twisting them and others that never crossed my mind before. I never knew I would be able to think of these 100 things by using one object that has one function only. It was hard and it took some time.

We moved on to phase two and the first step is where we had to choose 9 of our things and try to come up with two other ones using the comparisons: Reduction/Elaboration,Concrete/Abstract and Metaphorical/Literal. In addition, we were taught the ways in which we could refine our things by using sign operations such as addition,subtraction and substitution.

I picked out a couple of things and tried making comparisons with them and wrote down what I was thinking and how I am planning on refining each. At this stage, I don’t really know if I’m doing it right. I  am finding the way in which we can link things together and create meaning really interesting.