Visual Communication

Scribble pen.

 

The Scribble pen is an amazing piece of technology that allows you to pick up to 16 million colours worldwide and draw with that colour before your own eyes. Working on both pen and tablet, you press the end up against the colour you desire, and it will save the colour, allowing you to go to new levels of drawing.

I thought this idea was amazing. Knowing that you can use almost any colour in the world, and be spoilt for choice when you begin drawing. This reminded me of the idea of me scanning the QR code on my tag to feed back to the app; the ideas are similar that it picks up that specific code of that product, and it saves it for you if you wish.

What I found interesting was that the colours converted for Scribble are converted to RGB, CMYK and HEX, the 3 colour conversions that give that shade its identity.

I thought this was inspiring to include in my project and the clothing. When an item of clothing is saved, I could show the colour identification(s) within that clothing item, which essentially could help those who are colour blind match even closer to other groups of clothing to make sure that they are not getting confused with similar tones.

https://getscribblepen.tilt.com/a-revolutionary-pen-that-draws-in-any-color

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Simon Phipps

Simon Phipps challenged the perception of different buildings and the beauty within them. Over 15 years, he went around the UK taking pictures of different iconic, and mostly concrete, buildings. Inspired by the work of Le Corbusier, he wanted to show people there was more to the overall appearance of some architecture that may not necessarily be to everyone’s taste. He experiments with perception, capturing a different angle in all directions on the buildings, giving them the abstract feel and appearance.

What attracted me to attending this exhibition was the inspiration of his abstract appearance to his work. I love how he has angled his picture deliberately, ensuring there is no straight line or perfect shot. Architecture photography is something I am becoming fonder of, because of the pattern you can get out of every shot.

The black and white contrast adds depth to every picture also, which is something I would like to play around with in my pictures, rather than using lots of colour for a change. I feel inspired to try and use his work as ideas to how I can incorporate that style into my pictures, and possibly ideas for a project on giving a sense of abstraction.

Colour and Vision exhibition.

The Colour and Vision exhibition is an exhibit taken place at the Natural History Museum, London. The exhibition explains how vision and colour has evolved over the duration of around 500+million years. It goes through some of the oldest fossils of organisms that lived around that time, to animals today.

The exhibition was fascinating in understanding the knowledge of how complex the eye is. As you walk around, you get an understanding of how the eye originally was ‘flat’, and the retina and the shape of the eyeball evolved over time to allow us to see what we see today.

Showing eyes from different animals, interacting with our personal views and finding out why we see what we see today, it makes you wonder how much more we as humans, as well as animals, will be able to see in the future. The connection of colour and vision has led us to where we are today, going down the food chain in how predators had to try and find their prey to hunt.

My posters.

I decided to make a whole range of posters, from here, I can narrow down to what ones are my personal favourite and what ones merge well with another. I decided on doing a few of the patterns in different styles, but you can still see the theme going through. I feel that contrasting the environments between city and landscape really shows well in my pictures, and the abstract feel to them draws people in.

For some of the posters, I plan to not have any text written on them at all. I feel that the image itself is quite powerful and draws people in without needing any text. I think that by doing this, I have shown to people that it is better to go out and explore what is around you. Taking a 30-minute walk and opening your eyes makes you notice different angles and perceptions in natural landscapes and the beauty of city landscapes even.

I couldn’t pick out a favourite out of the posters. I feel every poster I have made tells a different story, and gives another clue of what my adventures are like. Previously, I mentioned in turning my posters into a book. Because there are hundreds of patterns to create and an infinite amount of photography to produce, a book to show these environments with quotes could be a really nice addition after this project instead, considering the brief was to submit 3 pieces of work.

For some of the posters, I did try to make use of the 5 senses I had previously researched. I really liked the idea of implementing a pattern that symbolizes the senses that we have, and how each one is enhanced when we explore. The images produced from these are not meant to be obvious to what they represent, because they are symbols. The idea of them is that there will be something beside them to explain what the image is trying to tell you, giving a little story behind the making of it. This gives the image a more personal touch to them, knowing that there was a reason to the making of them all.

City pictures.

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I made a day where I also spent taking photos around London. I planned to go Canary Wharf, London Bridge and St James’s park, 3 locations that I know would be good to take a few snaps. The outcome of some of my pictures gave me the realisation that I personally love perspective s and compositions, and with the poster I am thinking about producing, both perspective and composition is extremely important to take an effective shot, especially if you are changing it into something abstract.

Similar to the nature photos, I wanted to implement as much colour and depth as I could in every shot I took, and I managed to get some really interesting abstract/landscape imagery. Personally, I much preferred taking photos around London, because with nature, I found it more difficult to find something I found interesting enough to take a picture of, therefore I took more shots than I did in London.

Now I have a big bulk of images from both environments, I will now plan to put them together, and think about geometric shapes and possibly think about the idea of using our senses to put together my poster. Hopefully with my pictures, it will show the contrast of both environments, and will show people that stepping out of an office and exploring anywhere can be interesting if you begin to notice what is around you.

Thinking about putting these up as posters, it has got me thinking to maybe produce this as a book. For example, Urban Outfitters show very quirky books that have little in meaning, but you want to read them anyway. The books are easy to carry and are a means of something to distract your attention during your travels or when you are bored.

I thought this would be a good thing to think about for this project. The idea of having hundreds of posters based around motivating people to get out of the office and venture out, noticing things, could be nice for them to look at. I intend for every picture to be similar in the theme but different in the layout, making someone want to stare for hours at it and want to come back to have a look. The posters can easily be expanded to be used as coasters, or a flyer, or even be used as a phone case. I want people to be able to carry this motivation with them so they are always inspired.

Ref: http://www.urbanoutfitters.com/uk/catalog/productdetail.jsp?id=5620633470743&category=BOOKS-EU

Landscape images.

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Over the past week, I have been thinking about where I can go to take nice photographs in typical English weather. The first place I went to was a local park about 5 minutes away from my house. It was around midday and the sun was peaking out now and then, giving me about a minute gap to take as many photos as I could before the sun went in, catching any shadow. The images I took looked as if the sun was setting, giving some of the pictures a really nice, stormy feel to them.

I also decided to go to Bedgebury for the day. Only having about 3 hours in the day to take pictures before the sun went down, as well as it not tipping it down to get my camera wet, I managed to get some colourful shots. Despite both days being severely overcast in the majority of my photos, I focused on compositions and perspectives in my images.

All of the pictures I produced, I focused on colour as well. I really love the images that I had taken, editing them to emphasise as much colour as possible and to make every image quite striking. Despite they are all going to be cut up, the more vibrant I made the initial images, the better they look when I come to make them into something fairly abstract.

Wildlife photographer of the year 2015.

One of my favourite exhibitions. Every year I go, and to think I would get bored of it is simply untrue. Every year, there is a new image taken from a new perspective. This year, I noticed a lot of the images appeared almost as if they were paintings, they looked too ‘artistic’ to be true (certainly not complaining).

What I find inspires me when I go to exhibitions like this, is having a look at the amount of colour that is used in the images, and all the different perspectives you can take on image. It is truly inspiring and incredible to how much time and dedication these photographers go through to take one simple image.

This image, for example, took the photographer 3 weeks and thousands of images to get one shot he was happy with.

I couldn’t say there was a favourite image for me. There’s too much variation in every picture, I can’t say I like one better than the other, as they both show something completely different in colour, perspective and what is involved in the image.

http://www.nhm.ac.uk/visit/wpy.html

Semiotics – Introduction.

Semiotics

The study of signs.

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Semiotics is something you cannot talk about easily, because it is something that occurs all around us without us noticing! Ferdinand De Saussure was a Swiss teacher who dealt with linguistics. The language of Sanskrit’s especially fascinated him, such as the religious language around India and how the language was forbidden to change for thousands of years.

Ferdinand De Saussure

Ferdinand De Saussure

Today, the English language has evolved and words have been added to our dictionary in comparison. Saussure was intrigued also by how objects were called by its names and why we had originally put those sounds together to make that particular words(?)

 

Act of Communication:

By this, I mean we can communicate in hundreds of ways such as poster making, listening to something or reading. It is also read as a sign. Saussure used this little diagram to help understand the responses from the acts of communication:

diagram01

Signifier = Things that signals something (spoken/written word)

Signified = How it is registered in the mind of the person getting the message.

What Saussure had noted however, is that sometimes the sign is different than originally intended…

The example of the tree

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If I said tree, someone would assume this kind of tree… why? Is it because that is what we have grown to think when we say tree?

tree_background

Lets take this picture of trees – What do you assume?

  • The image personally is signified of an image taken in a park, but I am unfamiliar to what the park is or where it could be. The reason for this is because the trees are laid out in a certain way to make almost a path in between.
  • Next, if it were to be presented on a slideshow, I would then assume it didn’t resemble a park, it could mean something else and so on.

Confusing I know…

Denotation and Connotation

Denotation

 = The simplest level of what is seen (heard, smelt etc.)

Connotation

= What that in particular, means to you – things it makes you think of.

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E.g. lets use an old image of mine. This young woman is looking at a distance to something.

-What is she looking at?

– Is it really a woman perhaps?

These are all interpretations (denotation) of our own, but the connotation is looking more deeply into it. The connotation of this could be:

  • Bedroom -> Memories -> Sadness/Loss
  • Image -> Perception -> Insecurity
  • Walls -> Memories -> Change in people

^                       ^                         ^

DENOTATION          CONNOTATION

How does this relate to designers?:

  • We want to make sure the viewer understands what exactly we are showing.
  • We need to aim to make the majority.

Polysemic images

= Images/Anything that can have many meanings.

To me, this could be referred to an ‘analytical version of divergent thinking.

How can you label images to show things/contexts about it? Try to come up with a few:

Spooky house:

spooky_house_01_by_chulii_stock

  • Dark place
  • Like in a horror movie
  • Abandoned house?
  • Posters?
  • For sale signs/refurbished
  • Southern country area?
  • Drug area
  • Hot weather

Nurse image:

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  • Different cultures can do the same jobs
  • Healthcare advert
  • Sexism
  • Race?
  • Working environment
  • Family issues?
  • In an advert?
  • Perhaps she is hiding something?

I think the main thing you need to think about with semiotics, is that you CANNOT overthink it. Because it is something that occurs everyday without us thinking, looking at the perspectives of semiotics will make you think more into everything and why it was done in that way.

Typographic Timeline.

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A typographic timeline is purely what it says on the tin. The benefits of using one of these is it allows you to see the evolution of typography and how it has changed over time, comparing with other fonts around that time and even how some modern fonts have been influenced by those produced hundreds of years ago. I found a really good timeline that dates from 1450-2007 fonts, how each one has changed and formed!

website image

 

Type Classification

There are 4 basic groups that you can classify typefaces with. Within each of these groups are different categories of typefaces to help identify and choose typefaces. I have chosen some of the many categories and broke them down:

 Serif Type Styles

Old Style – Includes the first Roman types between the late 15th and mid 18th Centuries and other patterned typefaces around today. These are based on the flow of the pen and and the nib of the pen, forming a slanted axis with bracketed serifs. Historic designs by Francesco Griffo and Aldus Manutius initiated this style, which was then inspired by William Caslon and Claude Garamond.

Aldus Manutius

Aldus Manutius

Transitional – this stared with designs from John Baskerville in the mid 18th Century. It was called this because his style had changed traditional to modern. His work helped improve printing methods because of the finer character strokes.

John Baskerville

John Baskerville

Slab – This became popular in the 19th Century for advertising. The heavy serifs give more weight to the typeface, using it in a modern way. Examples of this include Rockwell, Museo Slab and Salvo Serif.

Clarendon – Clarendon’s were designed as bold faces, similar to normal slab serifs, but with a more of a decorative flare with its thick strokes. The serifs appear to be longer also. An example is Morris Fuller Benton’s font Century Schoolbook 1924.

Morris Fuller Benton

Morris Fuller Benton

Sans Serif Type Styles

Grotesque – This is one of the most popular sans serif typefaces. There are many different strokes and weights in this font making it look completely irregular, which is why it is given its name.

Geometric – This was probably most influenced with Paul Renner’s design 1927. It is built around geometry and its balance. These are used for easier reading and still appropriate when working on larger scales, not losing its pixilation.

Paul Renner

Paul Renner

Humanist Sans – based more on the proportions of Roman inscriptional letters. This is (to me) one of the easiest typefaces to read, closely matching the characteristics of serif types. Martin Majoor is an example of a typeface designer who created a font similar to this called Scala Sans.

Martin Majoor

Martin Majoor

Script Type Styles

Black letter – This is based on the manuscripts produced by monks from the 12th Century. The Gutenberg Bible was printed in this font in the 15th Century. This was used at the time to set blocks of text, forming the beginnings of movable type.

blackletter

Formal – These typefaces are from around the 17th Century. The formalistic writing styles have many strokes in them that join onto other letters.

formal

Casual – These styles are supposed to suggest informality, as if they were written carelessly and quickly like any old hand writing! Many of them were drawn with a brush, with the occasional connections on only some of the fonts.

casual

Decorative Styles

By far, this is the largest and most diverse of them all. They are mainly popular for signage, headlines and where strong typographic statement is required. They can be used at text in small quantities because they are so specific on the style. Overusing the typography would ‘hurt’ the human eye and prevent us even wanting to read it all! Some designs achieve dramatic results, while others create a 3D-like form to them.

decorative

 Note: Identifont is a great place to search for fonts and the designers, also to see what types there are that are similar to what you was looking for!

Research: Evolution of typography and the alphabet.

 

"More for you about the history of typography and the evolution."

Click on me to view more on the history of typography.

Typography is the merging of both science and art. The science part of typography has evolved throughout using technology to help communicate better with another.

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Evolution of the alphabet

As speech was the ultimate form of communication, other forms were needed in order to communicate at a distance to other people. Paintings were the initial example of communicating. The images represented symbols (as shown in the Madrid Codex) and standardized.

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Example of hieroglyphic writing

Egyptians used hieroglyphic writings, which were presented on clay tablets. Their style of writing was called Cuneiform. This was passed through the different cultures. They took some of the consonants they didn’t need in order to create vowels and other signs such as the ‘£’ and ‘&’.

Similarly, the Greeks borrow the Phoenician (Hebrew and Arabs today) writing, later deliberately changing the letterforms and structures, evolving the format to be read from left to right.

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The Latin alphabet is known to be the ancestor of the western European alphabet, influenced from the Greek. They changed the Greek ‘diagamma’ sign of W to become F for example. Later on, they added J and W, making the alphabet to 26 distinct letters, differentiating the sounds also.

evollatin

The capital letter was created in the middle ages. They were used in Western Europe in books to distinguish between the small-letter cursive writing.

Differently, the alphabets of South-East Asia came from the Brahimi alphabet. It contains far more consonants.

evolindianalpha

Evolution of formatting

Originally, writings were carved in stone. Due to its lack of portability, scratching on bark and leather became a good alternative. Many of the Middle East pressed their cuneiforms onto clay tablets and then baked to give a more permanent carving.

EA 161, letter by Aziru, leader of Amurru

EA 161, letter by Aziru, leader of Amurru

Later on, the Greeks and Romans used wax tablets. Although this was less permanent, it was much more portable-efficient. The letters would be scratched through with a stylus and bound together – this was known as a Codex.

codex sinaiticus, St Catherine's

codex sinaiticus, St Catherine’s

Longer documents were made from papyrus that was cut into thin strips, which were then glued together to make a long, thin strip. This was then evolved to parchment and vellum around 5th Century BCE.

On the East side, the Chinese developed the papermaking. This was then introduced into Europe after the Arabs learned the technique in the 12th Century CE. This was then quickly evolved to create other papermaking methods such as beating down the fibre, screening and pressing!
Books came around the time of Rome. The pens made from a reed or quill from a bird, which was then cut down and shaped. The ink was made from various materials such as iron filings and oak bark (boiled in vinegar).

Evolution of Typography

It is difficult to cover all the developments and movements of typography in a short space. My separation of evolving technologies from the development of typefaces is an artificial one — designs and the technology used to create them are not truly separable — but perhaps it is conceptually useful.

      Where names of typefaces are used, I attempt to use the original name: there are often clones with very similar names.

Because the movements of typography are FAR too vast to cover entirely, I looked at Thomas W. Phinney’s interpretation of breaking down the history of type into 4 distinct categories:

1) Gutenberg and the impact of printing – Gutenberg changed the world of communications. In 1448 he returned home (Mainz) to set up his own press. His movable type changed printing forever, changing the expense of printing and being able to print vast quantities in a shorter space of time.

Gutenberg printing press

Gutenberg printing press

Alongside this, Ottmar Merganthaler, further changed the whole evolution of typography (linked with the second point). His Lino printing machine, assembling moulds of letter forms in a line, which allowed much faster typesetting. His invention was able to cast an entire line of type at a time. This continuous change of processing (later offset) quickly changed the whole evolution of typography and how we print today, using more advanced technology to make printing far quicker and easier!

Ottmar printing

Ottmar printing

 

2) Industrial Revolution

Rotary steam press

Rotary steam press

This was the catalyst in printing and technology in history. Rotary steam presses replaced hand-operated ones as an example. 1885 Linn Boyd Benton invented a pantographic device, which scaled a drawing to the size required. This was major with skilled typographers in creating fonts in different sizes.

Fournier point

Fournier point

Moreover, Pierre Simon Fournier was the first to come up with the ‘point’ system 1737. It wasn’t until Francois Ambroise Didot refined his idea to use the ’72 points to the inch’ for type, which is still used today for the majority of computer-based typesetting systems.

 

3) Photocomposition – The first photocomposition was in 1944. Characters would be projected onto photo-paper, using the lenses to adjust the size of the letters. This was a huge improvement in technology, as they were able to overlap letters and create all kinds of layers and sizes.

 

4) Digital – John Warnock developed the PostScript in the 1980s. This was huge around the time as it enabled designers to put fonts on a computer. Computers are ultimately the outline for typefaces nowadays, because of its simplicity and speed to create a typeface or produce a piece with it. Due to its demand, the price range for this has dramatically decreased, making it accessible to almost anyone. This issue with this, is major companies such as the American Type Founders (ATF) had been left bankrupt, showing how the evolution of technology is also taking over.

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Something very important I had learned from doing this research, is how the whole change in typography has varied and been adapted all across the world. I think its fascinating knowing that the evolution of the alphabet and typography all link together, which then creates new inventions such as printing and paper making. All these techniques they created we still use everyday, but just more adapted to today’s environment and technology.