March 27, 2011

PSA: Getting There!

I feel like I made a lot of progress between now and when I was stuck in a rut before. Now it's just a matter of working out all the kinks, and fixing everything up! I did some rapid prototyping with these, and I've got some discoveries I need to work on.
For one, they need to be BIGGER! Right now they are all around 4.5x45 in, with the exception of the one that hangs below the TV (which it will no longer do). They all need to be bigger, and I need to think of their placement so that it is at a level that people can actually read. I also need to make sure that they contrast against what will probably be a stark white wall in the doctor's office.

Beyond all that:
  • refine a logo, house shape will move to logo, not be the entire thing
  • make it more friendly
  • refine a spray bottle icon to use across all the pieces (iconic iconic iconic!)
  • naming needs to be better, perhaps more specific.
  • reuse the titles if needed (I would like to try and avoid this though

PSA: Eek!

This is an attempt at combining the visual and verbal language of baby boomer caregivers into the PSAs. there are a lot of things wrong with this, aside from the obvious lack of design involved. I think I was getting too stuck on the fact that these needed to reflect as much of the subcultures language as possible, and I was hardcore sacrificing design for it. What I got from this is: I've looked up the design that baby boomers see all the time. Prognosis: it is hideous. Solution: don't try to use it!

PSA: Flushing Out

So for all of this, what I decided to do was make a series of visuals that go in a doctors office. This is because baby boomer caregivers spend a LOT of time dealing the doctors their patients go to visit. This is also a good spot because at the doctors office, YOU ARE TRAPPED. And you have to sit for a long time! So, there's incentive to let our eyes wander out and discover these pieces scattered around the room.

First is the waiting room. This includes the doorknob, light switch, television, telephone, receptionist's computer/desk, and pay station (credit cards).

The examination room will cover the sink/drain/faucet, counter tops, cupboards and trash can.

And the bathroom will have another sink (maybe) and the toilet handle.
And this is a rough of the magnet they can pick up on their way out to help them remember to do these things once they are back at home.

PSA: Initial Brainstorming

The first idea from the initial brainstorming was directed towards baby boomers, and it was a series of posters alerting them to the danger or certain areas of their home. Problems with this was that posters are pretty dull, and that it was so serious that it could potentially offend someone, or just be seen as a big joke.
The second idea was also involving germs and baby boomers, but this was with a LOT more pieces. It was supposed to be a website that helped baby boomers with their cleaning around their house. There were elements like a diagram of rooms in your house, and what areas might be germy. To go along with this, there were simple, printable materials that could remind of assist the baby boomers. One was a recipe card for how to make your own bleach, and it could be put on their fridge. They would also be able to print out things such as checklists and calendars with "cleaning day" called out somehow. Way too much for this project, but all pretty interesting, and in my opinion, pretty useful!

I went ahead with a hybrid of the two ideas, getting rid of the website and concentrating on just a few key elements.

Collection: Final Comps


March 21, 2011

Experimental Typography Readings

Experimental typography. Whatever that means.

This article really spoke to the unclear lines between what is considered "experimental" and what is not. In many instances, people toss the word experiment around when there's no clear reason to their work. If we were to speak scientifically, then we would be making questions/hypothesis's that we would be using type to prove. But this doesn't really mean the result will be groundbreaking or "novel."

With the limitation of communication on us, our experiments must already conform to some sort of convention. But out of all of this what I got was that the definition of experimentation is extremely subjective, and no matter what opinion or view you tend to lean towards, it seems that most importantly, like design overall, the experiments are all about process.

"It is experimental only in the process of its creation."

This reading really gave me some insight into the variety of standards regarding what people consider to be experimental typography. It's so subjective, I'm not sure why people want to analyze it. But it was interesting when the author pointed out that even if it is something that does not have a practical use when it was made, often times the discoveries made in the process of the experimenting lent itself to some better purpose.


function and aesthetic

I thought this was a much more interesting reading the perspective that it has as much to do with the experimenter as the experiment. This reading made me really excited to approach the risks involved in the process of creating these experiments. Again, it's all about process process process of it all! This project seems like it's going to be a sort of embodiment of the design process, explored through the element of typography.

Preliminary/Spring Break Type Research (REVISED)

Typography Research

March 3, 2011

Poster Contest!

Show us Your Posterior!

Student poster contest!

Information Graphics Contest


I know we might not all deal with our taxes (thanks parents!) but this is actually a contest for visualizing FEDERAL taxes! Like it says on the website, they give the numbers, you make the pretty graph! I only scanned the information on the page, but it seems legit. You can work individually or as a team, and you can submit up to 2 projects! It can be web interactive, image, or video.


March 2, 2011

Atypeical: Freshman Pep Squad

For my portion of the freshman information/presentation I produced the circular information leave behind and the small remind card. One thing that we wanted to emphasise was the importance of the time factor in the production and presentation of all the elements of information. Altogether, we wanted to create:
  • Simple to print and post flyer
  • 1 or 2 very large, colored posters for IMPACT
  • Circular flyer
  • Email New Letter
  • Business card-sized reminder (to be left on their desk)

Instead of bombarding the freshmen with a ton of information and then leaving them to forget about it, we decided it would be best to do it in this sort of order:
  • sneak peak sort of thing
  • information
  • information with examples of work (presentation)
  • reminded a couple days beforehand
Since talking in class, the purpose of the circle has changed (to a more guerrilla graphic) and the poster might have the possibility of being in strange/atypical (heh) locations, with strange dimensions. I am excited about all this.

Atypeical: Image Selection and Copy Refinement

For this round of work done, I was on the copy-refinement team and on the team that narrowed down the images that we are going to use on all the materials.
For the type, we didn't want to do a lot of BIG changes. After all, we spent a whole class period earlier back synthesizing the tagline and description we wanted to use. So, Bethany and I created a sort of web of options, with some slight word variations, so that a vote could be easy. As for the copy, we just tweeked a phrased here and there, and made some variations on that for good measure and to make sure we covered everything!

For the image selection, we wanted to focus on having a variety of images, both digital and analog. These images needed to have a certain degree of abstractness to them, so that they did not conflict with and copy that went on top of them and did not compete with the logo.

Atypeical: Starting to Finesse

Before class:

I spent time playing with many different type lockups and typefaces choices for the combination of the symposium name and the tagline. Then I selected an image from some of the ones that Karen produced, and placed the type on top of it. I wanted to try and keep the idea that I had from last class, where I made bars that reflected the nature of the image behind it. This round was...not so successful.

During class though, I was part of the team that was working on a logo shape! Here were my brainstormings that I pumped out during the hour we worked:
I wanted to use the circle idea we had going, in correlation with the idea of the exchange of ideas or "round table" feeling our symposium will have. The idea that I liked the best was the overlapping, rotated ovals. They were originally circles, but I felt that a more flat shape would help lend itself to the shape of the text that would go inside.

Atypeical: Continueing with the Direction

Now that we were starting to tighten up the visual elements of the symposium, I created this mock postcard and webpage as an example of the branding I was thinking of. I wanted to create elements that could be subbed out, like the background image, and matched with bars or other visual elements to make a variety of artifacts with an underlying unity.

I used my own images as the example. Since the images were made using folded paper, the banner and bar on the webpage and postcard, respectively, were treated in a manner that gave them an abstract 'folded' feeling.

Atypeical: A Direction

In this exploration, I set out to make some sort of theme based off of a hastily-whipped-up experimental type. This was a lot of fun to play around with, but ultimately I ran into a couple road blocks, and regardless, this got scrapped.

I arranged the paper shapes into the different letters of the name "Atypeical" and photographed them at varying angles. My initial idea was to make the whole symposium name out of these shapes, and maybe make it into a workable logo. The concept behind it all was again the idea of the many parts or players that came together to make this symposium, including the class and the people who come to the symposium. But after laying them out all together, I was unsatisfied with how it all came out. It looked like a cross between a beehive and an icecube tray! Luckily I did glean some stuff from the individual photos.

While the letters together seemed like a mistake, the individual letters very really interesting! It created a nice texture, nice dimension, and were visually interesting. It was after making these and laying them all out that I thought that traditional text would best suit these.

Atypeical: Initial theming ideas

So here are some of the brainstormings of the earliest stages of the Atypeical branding. I had messed around with some different ideas, mostly staying in black in white for the sake of keeping it simple and allowing it to be put on any media.

At first I though an idea that involved the sort of "pieced together" nature of the symposium, because it was made from 12 people collaborating. I had some weird idea of playing with negative space, and pushing the legitiblity. This looked very silly. Execution was not spot on.
Then after this, and after looking at the brainstorming wall of images that people put up, I thought of trying to appeal to the high school audience and play to the nature of the work "atypical." Barcodes seem like the ultimate symbol for conformity (I feel like I'm in high school when I say that word) and that making a theme of altered or broken barcodes might look nice. Again, I messed with the negative space, putting the symposium name inside. Then I played around with different ways to alter the shape, and then played around with the idea of making so sort of wayfinding/signage system.

March 1, 2011

Researching PSAs

1. Baby Boomer Care Givers: A Need for Hygiene

1. why is this issue pertinent and timely?
Basic hygiene and good health are issues that are being brought up a lot in the news. Between scares like the N1H1 flu and more non-specific causes for poor health like germs in the house and not taking proper precautions with physical tasks (such as heavy lifting), there are a lot of illnesses and injuries that can be prevented from just taking basic precautions.

2.what are its causes?
Illness and injury can be caused because of inattention or ignorance to health and wellness standards. Poor personal hygiene, hygiene in public spaces and in private homes. Lack of proper tools (machinery or things like braces) to help with physical tasks at home or work.

3. what are detrimental effects to individuals? to greater society?
To individuals, the effects can range from light to serious consequences.
Light: some sicknesses are contracted or light injuries that heal over time happen. In a serious case, lack of personal health and safety can result in contracting life-threatening diseases or injuries that could change their lives permanently (and also cost them a lot of money, loss of mobility, loss of job, etc-many consequences).

To the greater society, most of the same holds true. In public places, poor hygiene can lead to outbreaks or viruses or sicknesses that spreads to effect everyone. Children and employees of large companies are examples of people that are stuck in high-traffic, close-proximity quarters with their peers, and it often only takes one sick person to turn the place into a hot zone.

4. what are preventative measures?
Simple health and hygiene can prevent these things.
washing your hands regularly
cleaning objects that you use regularly but might not think about (light switches, doorknobs, fridge handles, sink knobs, etc)
being aware of high-risk areas in public spaces (bathrooms, food tables, telephones)
thoroughly cleaning your home/all surfaces

5. how does this issue relate to your sub-culture?
they are getting older, with comes with a weaken immune system. In addition, the caretaking that they do can put extra physical and mental strain on their bodies, making them more likely to get hurt or sick. This is also an important nature because of the nature of their work and who they work with. They come into close contact with their patient all day. If they are sick, they will not be able to efficiently take care of their patient. Also, the patient might have a weak immune system depending on their circumstances. It is in both of their interest to keep themselves and their environment safe and hygienic.

6. what organizations have a vested interest in this issue?
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Department of Health

7. what organizations have a vested interest in your sub-culture?

8. what public service campaigns have previously addressed this issue?
UNISEF - Hand washing campaign “Spread the Word - Not Germs”
Department of Health ( and a ton of other organizations) - Flu Campaigns

2. Baby Boomer Care Givers: Financial Planning

1. why is this issue pertinent and timely?
As a country, America is in debt. Individual citizens are also in a lot of debt. In previous generations, there was not a lot of emphasis on the importance of long-term financial planning. These people grew up without clear plans, and while some have been fiscally responsible, by and large there is a big issue with over spending.

2. what are its causes?
Reckless spending, lack of a financial plan, credit card use, over-spending on nonessential items, lack of thought for the future,

3. what are detrimental effects to individuals? to greater society?
To an individual, the lack of financial planning can result in a lack of funds when they’re required. For emergencies, there is no emergency fund saved up and then their budget isn’t equipped to handle the cost. This might result in the individual having to take out additional loans, landing themselves further in debt.

Reckless spending is another reason for debt that racks up more and more, with little chance of making it out without a plan. Individuals spend too much money on non-essential items, and often use credit cards they can’t pay back. Because there is a lack of understanding and credit
is mistaken for cash, the individual feels they have limitless funds.

To the greater society, this lack of financial security is a constant issue in the government. For instance, our country is largely in debt to many different countries right now, spending more and more money that the American people can’t pay back. This effects our stability as a nation, it effects our relationships with other societies, it causes issues back home like tax raises and loss of the value of a dollar. On a smaller societal scale, companies are unable to support themselves and file bankruptcy, and many end up getting bailed out with tax-payers money.

A poor economy combined with a lack of financial planning can land someone in messes from light debt, serious debt, to losing their property and homes.

4.what are preventative measures?
Creating both a long term and short term financial plan can prepare an individual for unexpected events as well as getting their future financially settled. This includes accounting for retirement.

5. does this issue relate to your sub-culture?
This is pertinent to the Baby Boomer subculture because of the vast amount of money that they can end up spending if their patient falls into bad (or worse) health. Since these health issues often come about very suddenly, it’s a common problem that the family becomes strapped for money after they’re hit with their new life-changing situation.

6. what organizations have a vested interest in this issue?
Financial Planning Standards Council

Retirement Savings Organization Campaign

7. what organizations have a vested interest in your sub-culture?

8. what public service campaigns have previously addressed this issue?
None that I could find

3. KC Bicycle Commuters

1. why is this issue pertinent and timely?
Cycling is becoming a bigger and bigger method of transportation. Whether because it is viable or just a trend, it’s something that’s gotten a lot of attention in the last couple years. Cities all over the country are becoming more bike friendly. Divers get a lot of criticism for not being good about sharing the road and respecting cyclists. But it also the cyclist’s job to be aware of whats around them and all of the laws and regulations that apply to them.

2. what are its causes?
Mostly, it is just the ignorance of the laws around them, but sometimes can also include apathy to regard the laws (both cars and cyclists)

3. what are detrimental effects to individuals? to greater society?
To an individual, the effect is their safety. Without a clear knowledge of the rules that apply to them while cycling, there is a disconnect between them and the drivers. Signals, safe turning and other bike laws keep the cyclist safe.
To society, road safety is always a concern. But especially now, with raising gas prices causing more people to find alternate means of commuting, making sure that commuters that are new cyclists know the correct way to go about it is important for everyone’s safety.

4. what are preventative measures?
Education of the proper rules, regulations and laws required to ride a bicycles on the road with traffic

5. how does this issue relate to your sub-culture?
This subculture is very serious about using the bicycle to commute around town. There’s no sort of “driver’s test” or license for riding their bikes, but that doesn’t really exempt them from needing to know about the rules of the road.

6. what organizations have a vested interest in this issue?
League of American Cyclists

Urban Velo

The Local Law Enforcement

7. what organizations have a vested interest in your sub-culture?

League of American Cyclists

Urban Velo
Bicycle Transportation Alliance

8. what public service campaigns have previously addressed this issue?

Decide to Ride PSA - Bicycle Transportation Alliance

Other Links