Sunday, 29 November 2015

OUIL405 Visual Narratives - One Week Book Screen Printing and Final

Washing our screen out

Setting up our screen on the bed

First Colour

Having screen printed before I was quite excited to get back too it. I find that screen printing is a really clean and professional looking way of producing images, and can also offer the chance for experimenting and for some unexpected results in terms of offset printing and experimenting with colours and overlapping colours. 

I was really pleased with the final outcome of our book, I think that the colours work really nicely together and that the different styles of everyones work really add a unique, hand made feel to the book. 
From this little brief I have learnt how to work quickly and manage and organise my time. I have also learnt how to work better in a group and although I am quite shy I feel this has helped me develop my confidence in my work and in myself a little bit, I feel like I'd be quite happy to work as part of a group again. I think you have to commit yourself to a group project a lot more than you'd probably comment to work that you're completing yourself, mostly because everyone has their own role and responsibility and it's your job to complete these tasks so as not to let the group down. 
I also learnt that when screen printing I need to be really careful to make sure that the lines on the positive are solid black. There were a few issues with my illustration as some of the lines didn't come through clearly on the print which meant some of my illustration is missing. Apart from this I  am very happy with the final book and also with how well we managed to work as a group to produce our little book in the space of a week.

OUIL405 Visual Narratives - One Week Book Development

I found working as part of a group quite difficult, mainly due to my quiet nature and also my lack of confidence in my work and my ideas. Although it was difficult for me to gather the confidence to have a larger input into group discussion and decision making, I found that overall we were working quickly and efficiently as a group, and quickly had an idea to make a book that was based around the people that we had seen and spoken to around Leeds. 
I was given the task of illustrating the florist, which I was quite happy about as I like drawing flowers and this gave me a bit of an excuse to draw some plants. 

Chosen colour scheme - Orange and Turquoise

I really pushed myself to try and work in the chosen colours and to use pencil crayon to draw my Illustration but I was continuously disappointed with the work I was producing. I decided to stick to using a pencil and then work out where the different colours would be afterwards. This meant i could produce an Illustration that I was pleased with and then go to think about colours. 

Final Illustration
My final Illustration was drawn from the photo we took of the Florist in the market, I then added a table of flowers to the bottom and a market stall to the top of the page, this type of layout was consistent through the majority of the book, with the exception of the chestnut man who was across a double page spread. 

Overall I was quite pleased with my final illustration and was excited to take this to the group and put everyones work together so we could start to get a sense of what the book would look like as a finished piece. 

OUIL405 Visual Narratives - One Week Book Initial Group Research

For the start of this task we were given the task of adventuring off into Leeds to do some visual research with our groups, with the aim of being able to go back to the studio with research to make a picture book from. 
Wilf in front of a statue

Crystals in the Crystal Shop

Crystals in the Crystal Shop

Flowers in the Market


Drink at Whitelocks

Fancy Dress 

Fancy Dress

View from top of car park

View from top of car park


Crystal Shop:
"Clear Quartz is very popular, it's tactile, very relaxing"
"You need Aquamarine - you need to be strong and courageous" - Emma, shop owner
"Aquamarine is soothing, calming and cleansing, it inspires trust and letting go" 
"Moonstone is calming and can be very effective in soothing emotions"

Fish Monger 
"The people make Leeds, it's middle class but it has working class roots. It's working class done good."

(What do you hate about Leeds?) "The smack heads"

Egg Lady
"I don't like much about Leeds but we won't go into that"

Chestnut Man 
" My great grandfather started the business" "It's good to be out in the fresh air and adding to the festive atmosphere

Monday, 16 November 2015

OUIL403 - Module Evaluation

1.  Which practical skills and methodologies have you developed within this module and how effectively do you think you are employing them within your own practice?

Although I limited myself by only using hand drawn techniques, I feel I have developed these practical skills which has allowed me to effectively work in a variety of different styles with a selection of different mediums. I also think that I have developed practical skills in terms of producing roughs before moving onto final pieces. This has helped me to visualize what my final work will look like and give me an opportunity to see whether or not certain things would or wouldn’t work for certain projects. I think that I’m effectively employing these within my own practice throughout this brief and throughout others.

2. Which principles/ theories of image making have you found most valuable during this module and how effectively do you think you are employing these within your own practice?

Limitations on colour and format across all three briefs really made me think about how I was producing my work. I usually work in quite a lot of detail and had to learn how to simplify my Illustration in order to fulfil the mandatory requirements of the brief. Limitations on colour meant that although sometimes I was limited to one or two colours, I could still work with different tones of that particular colour, this allowed me to be a bit more flexible with my work and add a bit more depth to it without ignoring the requirements of the brief. I also think this brief has introduced me more to critical thinking as I’ve had to be constantly analysing and evaluating my own work, I think this is one of the main things I am employing within my own practice as on-going analysis is important to the development of my work and the development of a brief as a whole.

3. What strengths can you identify within your submission and how have you capitalised on these?

I feel that my main area of strength in my submission is the quality of the final work produced. I took pride and care within my work to make sure it was of the highest standard I could produce. I also feel that another area of strength would be my idea generation. I took the time to make sure I brainstormed ideas thoroughly and explored a variety of different paths to take my work down. I think this helped me a lot as it allowed me to explore different possibilities and produce a range of work that was carefully thought about.

4. What areas for further development can you identify within your submission and how will you address these in the future?

I feel that the main area for development in my submission would be the experimentation and development process. I feel like I got the hand of trying out new materials and developing my ideas throughout the module but also know that in the earlier briefs this was a weakness of mine. In the future I will address this by spending more time exploring a range of materials and spending time developing how I use these materials in my work. I also feel like I limited myself to hand drawn illustration and would like to address this by pushing myself to explore different ways of image making such as cut paper and collage.

5. In what way has this module introduced you to the Ba (Hons) Illustration programme?

I think this module has introduced me to the programme in terms of how broad a subject Illustration is. It has taught me how to apply my Illustration to different kinds of work, such as editorial and book covers etc. It has also introduced me to a structured way of tackling briefs given on this course, which in turn has helped a lot with my time management. I also believe that this module has helped me realise that Illustration doesn’t just have to be hand drawn imagery. It covers a broad range of techniques and materials from collage to Photoshop and although I did limit myself in this brief I am looking forward to widen the range of materials I use and discover different methods of image making.

6.How would you grade yourself on the following areas:
(please indicate using an ‘x’) 

5= excellent, 4 = very good, 3 = good, 2 = average, 1 = poor








Quantity of work produced


Quality of work produced


Contribution to the group

The evaluation of your work is an important part of the assessment criteria and represents a percentage of the overall grade. It is essential that you give yourself enough time to complete your written evaluation fully and with appropriate depth and level of self-reflection. If you have any questions relating to the self-evaluation process speak to a member of staff as soon as possible.

OUIL403 - Do Judge A Book By Its Cover Final

Overall I was really pleased with the way my book cover turned out. I felt that overall it communicated my concept clearly as well as looking quite effective and I personally would say it's at least a slight improvement on the original cover of the book. Although I didn't experiment with as much material and processes as I probably should have done, I really felt that using fineliner was the best route for me to go down with this brief as it's a material that I am comfortable working with and that I know can create different textures and quality of line when used efficiently. 

What I did well: 
  • I think that the quality of the book cover is quite high. I'd say that I spent a sufficient amount of time making and drawing this cover and I am quite pleased with the look of the end result. 
  • I was pleased with myself for drawing things that initially came to my head after mind mapping and researching. I usually leave the creative aspect of a brief until I am set on an idea but I tried to draw around my theme for this brief so that I could see my progress and let the initial drawings that I did develop into better ideas
  • Experimented with my chosen design. I'm glad that I spent some time developing the rough that I had chosen and making little mini book covers. This really helped me to see what the final book cover was like and allowed me to find what worked and what didn't work in terms of layout and design. 
What I could improve on: 
  • I feel like i could have taken more time when it came to looking at what kind of typeface to use and how I would lay this out. I didn't see this as an 'interesting'' part of the brief so brushed it aside a little but I understand that type is important and that I should consider it more.
  • I feel like I could have developed the spine of the book a little more. This is usually the first part of a book that someone will see and I think it's the part that I focused on the least. 
What I'd do differently: 
  • Make full sized mock-ups, some of my measurements were a little off which led to me having to make a few copies of the final book cover
  • Explore colour more and see how this can be used to communicate a concept or how it can enhance an existing image
  • Spend more time looking at and developing type. Consider layout and size as well as choice of typeface



OUIL403 - Do Judge A Book By Its Cover Development

 After choosing the design I wanted to go with for the book cover I decided to experiment with layout and colour to see what would work best. To do this I decided to work at half the size that the actual book cover would be. 

This is my first developed rough, I really like how I've used the lines to add depth and texture to the black background. I feel that this works a lot better than just a flat black background. I also think that it makes the main illustration stand out a lot more. I added blue watercolour to the characters cheeks. I wanted to try to incorporate the colour blue somewhere due to the title of the book and blue being a colour that is closely associated with winter. I'm not entirely sure why I decided to add this colour to her cheeks but I quite liked the splash of colour that it added to a simple black and white illustration. 
I tried to add blue circles behind the text to make it stand out bit more from the white background but decided against this as it looked quite messy. 



For this development I got rid of the blue circles that I;d used to frame the text and decided to give the white space at the top a light blue wash with watercolour. Although I quite liked this and thought that it looked cleaner than the circles, I thought it looked quite odd combined with the textured black background. 


My final development focused more on how I could make this images show a positive side to S.A.D aswell. I decided to explore the idea of adding another character onto the back of the book. The character on the back would have their eyes open looking upwards as a sign of positivity and 'opening their eyes' to dealing with S.A.D. In a sense the character represents the reader. They may feel very low and alone when they first start reading the book but hopefully afterwards they will feel more positive and have a brighter outlook on coping and managing their S.A.D.


This final development was the one that I decided to go with for my book cover design as I think it communicates my concept clearly and effectively as well as looking the best out of my other developments. 

OUIL403 - Do Judge A Book By Its Cover Idea Generation and Roughs

Chosen Book - 'Winter Blues - Everything You Need To Know To Beat Seasonal Affective Disorder'
Author - Norma E. Rosenthal, MD
Dewy Code - 615.8

I chose this book because the subject matter seemed quite interesting and was also kind of personal to me so I believed this would help me with idea generation as I'd be able to relate to or understand the topic of the book a lot better. 

Original Book Cover

I researched briefly into the subject of the book, which helped me to gain a better understanding of the condition (S.A.D) which in turn helped inform and expand my idea generation. Below are a few initial ideas/drawings that I did after brainstorming and research the theme/subject of the book. 

I wanted to be able to create a book cover that showed both sides to S.A.D. The positive side of beating the disorder and learning to cope with it, and also the negative side of having to suffer with the condition and the disadvantages it can bring you to. I tried to keep this in mind while thinking of different ideas and layouts. I also wanted to in some way tie in the season of winter, as this is when S.A.D is most likely to affect individuals. 

I came up with a few different ideas and from here went onto choose five of them to develop a little more into full scale roughs. 

Chosen design
I decided to go with the design that included the girl on the front cover on a black background. I chose this image because I thought it was a good representation of a mental health disorder and also because I thought it the darkness of the background can represent how dark it gets during winter but also the feeling of loneliness and isolation. From here I want to go on to develop this rough more and find out how I can develop the image to make it most effective. 

OUIL403 Visual Skills - Day In The Life Final Editorial Illustrations

Overall, I was quite pleased with my outcomes for this brief. I found it quite difficult to engage with the article as it was something that I had a neutral position on. This meant I was aiming to produce work which showed a neutral stance. I don't think any of the illustrations give an extreme view to either a negative or positive stance you could have on my article, which allows the reader to make up their own mind. 

What I did well: 
  • Kept the illustrations neutral; they didn't influence the way the reader would look at the article
  • Communicated the topic of the article clearly/concept is clear
  • Used the space I had to work with well 
  • Kept the illustrations simple and clear

What I could improve on: 
  • I think I could have developed the illustrations more. During the final crit for this brief I was told that the Illustrations looked quite rushed and unfinished. 
  • I should have experimented with different ways of making the illustrations, whether this be collage, cut paper, computer rendered etc
  • Initial research into the topic of the article would have helped and would probably have helped me engage with the article a bit more

What I'd do differently: 
  • Plan and manage my time better in order to be able to fully experiment and develop ideas that I have had 
  • Be braver when it comes to experimentation! I get quite scared that by using new mediums I'm not going to be able to produce work that looks 'good' because I'm unfamiliar with the materials I'm using. I really feel like this limits the work I am able to produce and would like to push myself in this area and try work outside of my comfort zone a little bit
  • I'd have liked to have added a little more depth to my work by using different shades of pink. This would have still stuck to the mandatory requirements of the brief but would have allowed me to add more detail and depth to my work.