Thursday, October 30, 2008

Website redesign

I decided to redesign my website. My old one was clunky and didn't really show off what I was most interested in. The site's definitely under construction, but I'd appreciate any criticism you can give. (The "about" page is completely blank still, just FYI.)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Friday, October 24, 2008

Creative Epiphany

It struck me recently that every time I try to sit down and write something at a desk, I get this sinking "I really don't want to do this right now" feeling. Something about hunching over a table in an uncomfortable and restrictive chair makes me squirm. And my work ends up reflecting that. It's squirmy and squirmish.

To improve the quality and quantity of my writing, I've decided to give up desk sitting for a while. Instead, I sit down on the ground, lean my back up against my bed, and prop a pillow behind my back to keep the bed frame from boring into my spine. I set my laptop comfortably on --where else?-- my lap and start to type. And miraculously, all of my writing cramps (except the hand cramps, of course) disappear.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Robot sketches

Here are some sketches from typography class. The drawing with the fan arms reminds me of Krang. Scary.

Caption It!

In order to increase participation on my blog and boost my readership of 1 to -- perhaps -- 2, I thought I'd try this little creative exercise. What do you think is happening in this story? Write a caption for it if you'd like!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Typographic Contrast

Last week for typography, our assignment was to match as closely as possible every single aspect of a page from Time. While I won't post that assignment here (mostly because it's a huge embarrassment), I will say that copying someone else's design completely is really difficult. Of course, part of the difficulty in that assignment was not having the right fonts. Anyway, I got close to making things look right, but there were a few things I really needed to tweak.

This week, we again used grids to create three interesting spreads for an article about legibility and readability. We were supposed to use contrast, do something interesting with the title side of the page, and have fun while relying on the grid as much as possible. We could make our own title for the article, but we were to use all of the main body copy given (which totaled about 450 words). Here are the results:

I got my inspiration for the first design from the download page for Mido. Here's the link to that: Their design is cooler, but I thought the idea worked well with the idea of legibility and readability. The other two designs came straight from my own brain!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

High-Quality (and FREE!) Fonts

I found this list of free fonts yesterday while working on a typography assignment. If you can't afford $300 font sets, these are some great OpenType alternatives that represent some of the "hip" new trends.

(Smashing Magazine, where I got the link from, actually has a lot of neat stuff, so you might try checking it out every now and again for inspiration and downloads. )

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Show and Tell, Week 5 - The Tipping Point

The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell. Love this book. Some day, I'll talk more about how cool it is.

  • Connectors~people who link people together
  • Mavens~know-it-alls who can tell you any and every thing about a given topic
  • Salesmen~the people that other people listen to when deciding to buy a product
The whole book is basically about how small actions can bring about big changes, an idea to which I subscribe. Maybe that's why I liked the book so much.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Texting on a Bicycle

The other day, I saw a man riding his bike while texting. This, as you may know, takes some serious talent. Sure, driving while texting is pretty hard; you have to negotiate the steering wheel and your thumb, keep track of the road and a 1.5" square LCD screen, and brake and accelerate as needed, all at insanely fast speeds. But a bicycle? You've got to keep your legs moving, keep one hand on the handlebars, and try and focus on what you're reading/writing with one thumb, all while ensuring that a car (whose occupant is also texting) doesn't fly by and smoosh you. Forget all those tricks you used to do as a kid; try this one: "Look mom, I'm bicyctextling!"

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Typography Assignment Part Dos

Well, here's what I turned in today for the second part of my contents page typography assignment. Last week's assignment was to use hierarchy and scale in the work. This week, we were supposed to experiment. So, I turned to handwriting for one of the designs, and I turned to Reese's Pieces for the other. Yep, that's right, I took my color scheme from my favorite candy! There are some definite cleanup issues to deal with, but I felt like these were turninable. I'm sure turninable is a real word, too, so don't mock me for it :)

Friday, October 3, 2008

The Traveling Sketchbook Project

Before I moved to Maryland, one of my friends, a high school art teacher, told me about The Traveling Sketchbook project. He said the idea was to have a series of sketchbooks distributed throughout Utah with instructions to put a drawing in the books and pass them on to others. The sketchbook images would then be posted on a blog, and the books would keep traveling until they were filled.

Right before I left for grad school, my friend passed one of those sketchbooks on to me. It's taken me six months to get around to filling these two pages, but I did it! I'll probably be passing the book on to someone in Words and Images class, of course.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Illustration Friday: Packed.

Or stressed? I made this image a few years ago as an illustration for an educational company's promotional. Found it while looking through an old hard drive today!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Inventor

Sketch from tonight's Design/Business link class. I used my trusty fountain pen for this. No pencil sketch -- just started drawing, and this is who showed up. I think I was inspired by my most recent read, The Invention of Hugo Cabret. Not sure what this guy's invention does or how it works, but it looks like fun!