Assignment 4 Show Me

assignment 4 asked me to design. my own typeface for a magazine called TYPE, in addition I had to prepare three articles around what males a type face interesting, how a typeface is constructed and the question mark.

The first thing I did was prepare the articles, whilst doing that I began to collect some magazines titles that I liked the look of. It was clear from my favourites I collected I wanted something with a little character, only a few standard looking fonts were included, the ones that could be used elsewhere and maybe. not be obvious they was the same font. The other challenge I had was that this was a magazine about type, sop certain fonts were out of the question, like a handwritten script type for example. I started to think of old printing presses and maybe there was a way. to do something in a modern style. I started to experiment, but even that was its own journey.

I made a grid in photoshop, just three lines for a baseline, median line and an Uppercase height Line, I had thought that the font would be more impactful in uppercase, but didn’t want to shut down any lower case experimentation. The grid was good but very rigid, I didn’t take into account a gutter for each character, I decided to make something that worked for each letter and also offered more versatility. I did some loose scribbling but the grids were too flexible. I. then turned to the ipad and turned on the grids available in the procreate software, this was much better, I could turn the grids off when. they was a distraction draw shapes and curves more acutely, any small mistakes were easy to undo. I had found my preferred workflow.

The first grid I made was too rigid
The second one was more useful

I tried to draw purposefully, looking for a theme or common thread that would weave through my typeface design.

Once I had something to work too I moved the sketches into adobe illustrator, it was here that I added two serifs together and created. a familiar shape, it was from this I decided to base the font, I had read. in my research that typographers will look for something to add, a theme or a method, my serifs together looked like a bat with wings extended. It felt Gothic, like an old printing press maybe, this fit nicely, I called my typeface Barbastelle gothic, named after a genus of a bat.

In adobe illustrator I tried to build with shapes to add some method to the construction and consistency to the shape.
It did help create a flow. The head and tail serifs, I combined to make that. “bat” shape in the P

I had the start of my final design

I really enjoyed this assignment, it felt like a real challenge and was very rewarding, I don’t think my font would find its way. on many font foundry websites but i was pleased with what I created with my new knowledge on the anatomy of a typeface. It is something I would like to have another stab at another time.

Assignment 5: Seven Days

For this assignment I was asked to use the title Seven Days to tell a story, I thought it might be good to play with the lifecycle of an insect over seven days, I googled insects which would fit in that time frame, in the end, I decided that a fly would be a good choice, it has a lifecycle with several  interesting stages and has lots of natural predators. I gathered some reference imagery that I would need to realise my idea.
I wanted to present the story as a comic book style strip.


I roughed out a script to work from as a loose start, I did deviate from this slightly at the pencilling stage, making edits to some of the panels that were in there to fill space in the boxes I had drawn out, I changed this as I drew it out as some interrupted the flow.

rough script

Once I had an idea for a basic story, I worked out a layout for the panels, I tried to keep these interesting by varying shape and size, I adjusted my rough pencils as I went ready for the inking stage.

roughs-page 1

roughs-page 2

roughs-page 3

With the pencils finalised the Ink stage was next, where I could add the textures and details needed to add visual interest to the storey.

Inks for page 1

Once the inks where finished, I could go in and throw some colour on them, this helped to further establish a hierarchy and separate details tonally.



I was quite happy with the end result, It isn’t the most riveting story but it was a lot of fun to draw. I liked the colour palette too.

Assignment 1: Say hello

For the first assignment I had to produce a greeting card to introduce myself to my tutor.  I started brainstorming with a spider diagram, I concluded that the most interesting imagery was going to come from the hobbies I have, I sketched out some rough ideas and thought that a collection of images may be nice, I wanted to include some patterns and some hand drawn type as I hadn’t done that before. It didn’t take long to think of a phrase, I wanted to show that I have a lot of interests so I thought “I don’t pass time, I fill it” would be a good message. I really liked the idea of using pencils, ruler and ink for the card to give it a crafty organic feel. The below gallery is full of some photos of my progress.

spider diagram
About me

Some rough ideas

When I had finally inked the artwork I thought it could be cleaner and the text would benefit from some adjustment. I photographed the artwork and then took it into Photoshop, I cleaned up some lines and edited the text out. I also wanted to remake the guitar lead so it was geometrically accurate and a consistent width.

Tidied up line work
Tidied up line work

I recreated the hand drawn font with the computer this time, I followed two rules to come up with the text one was every character had to follow a circular form if it had curves etc, the other was any vertical lines had to end with an angle. The font came out as I had imagined in my head so I was pleased with that.

Art work with the text added
Artwork with the text added

Once I added in the colour it started to pop, I wanted the type to pop out so I left it white to create strong contrast. I then took a photo of a table and placed some folded card on top, added my artwork and mocked up a concept image.

With colour added

This is how the artwork would look on a card
This is how the artwork would look on a card.

I really enjoyed creating this card, it was a good exercise in planning even though in the end I had to edit a lot of the image with Photoshop. If I had to start again I would draw up the elements separately and composite the image once I was happy with all the drawings. I feel that would be a good workflow.

Assignment 2: Point of sale display

For this assignment the brief was to create pos to use in a supermarkets vegetable display, The pos had to promote quality and show seasonal vegetables for both summer and autumn.
Unlike the previous exercise  that featured fruit this one also had to show the season too.
I thought a roundel or insignia may be a good way to go,  but this didn’t seem to look upmarket enough.

ThIs image had a lot of excessive detail that would easily get lost

The colour version looked more appealing but something didn’t feel right

I tried again this time using colour to make the vegetables look appealing,  it was better but I still wasn’t happy.

I made the decision to start over, I used the vegetables as a colourful background and added in some painted icons, a sun for Summer and a maple leaf for Autumn. This seemed like a much better direction, it was vibrant appealing and the hand painted icons gave it a “home made” quality.
I could picture this in Sainsburys or Waitrose, and I feel it would have caught a shoppers eye, with its bold and vibrant design.


Sun Soaked Summer Vegetables

Warm and cosy Autumn Vegetables

Assignment 3: A Poster

For this assignment I was asked to produce artwork for an upcoming jazz festival, I looked for images for my moodboard, and researched what was expected from a jazz poster, they all seemed to include fun shapes and bright earthy colours a lot of oranges and yellows. Jazz has a very cool and laid back feel to it, I wanted to use that in the artwork, while still making it lively.

moodboard moodboard 3

After absorbing the mood boards I had made I went to work creating my thumbnails, I tried to vary these and stick to the things I had seen and know work, I produced six very different ideas.

I took the two most successful ones and broke these down to their most basic forms as per the previous exercise, I do find this helps to re create the composition and iron out any conflicts, this is something I will definitely introduce into my work flow. The planning steps are important and when missed have always resulted in something I’m not happy with, spend ages fixing or worse still,  left unfinished.

I decide on the seated musician this composition created a good diagonal, with a cloud of cigarette smoke breaking the line, I found this quite interesting and fit in with the blocks of colour feel of the other posters I had seen. The colours needed to be vibrant, I didn’t want to use flat colours as I’d seen on most of the others, It seemed a bit cliche’d and tired. I wanted to create a focal point for the text this would be on the middle to bottom left, where the cloud and diagonal line make a natural space for it to sit. Other information can still be displayed below such as event organisers and sponsors for example.


I added some text on this version to see how it might work,  I’m not sure I’m entirely happy with the outcome, it has an art deco feel to it, maybe a more modern flatter approach would have been better after all, the colours are nice and vibrant and I do think it has a cool laidback feel to it, just not as exciting as I had hoped. Maybe sometimes these things are cliche’d for a reason, Im pleased I tried to do something else but if this was for a client I’m sure they’d want something more familiar.

Assignment 4: Magazine Illustration

For this assignment I had to choose from four options, these were to be used for a magazine, the options were lost, disaster, discovery and guilty secret.

These had to be drawn from still life, I could select any items I wanted to work with. I chose to go with guilty secret. I worked up a spider diagram and highlighted in red what visual elements I could use.

I had a bit of a problem, I wanted to use a skull but did not have access to one to either work from or photograph.  I looked up the definition of still life.

A still life is defined as a collection of inanimate objects arranged together in a specific way.

As the subject matter was unobtainable I put together a photo montage, this still seemed to fit within the still life parameter.
The skull represented something horrific or evil, maybe even a death or murder. For the secret aspect I felt  a “shushing” finger would represent this perfectly, signaling for someone not to speak. I very nearly didn’t add the blood drips, it’s quite macabre but it did bring a sinister element
and it really helped sell the narrative.
I wanted to use a rough texture in the background, I see this a lot in magazine articles. The hand I chose to keep flat to break up the red, for the skull I used a lot of fine lines, outlining the main areas in a thicker line.
When using colour I wanted something quite abstract and very dynamic. Red could be the colour of guilt, for example “they were caught red handed”  I wanted to use that as the main hue,  I didn’t want to use an absolute black and white for the ends of my tonal value, so I opted for a very dark red and light grey for my pallette.

Here is the artwork mocked up on a magazine, I was really happy with the way this turned out. The textures worked well, and the flat areas of the hand against the textured background offered nice contrast, the line work also worked well offering some subtlety.