EMPHASIS DESIGN

MONDAY 17TH – FRIDAY 21ST JUNE

I worked with a design agency called Emphasis, based in Leeds, for a week. I worked on 2 projects and I saw how a company works, with the staffing structure, the structure of projects and how they start and also how they work with clients. It was really interesting to have an insight into the job that I would like to do. I really enjoyed the work I did and I realised that I would like to carry on pursuing that career and subject, however I also decided that I think working in an office environment is not really for me.

EDIT

To start the first project, which was a rebrand for an architectural company called ‘EDIT Architecture’, I created a moodboard containing inspiration for the project, with existing logos from other architecture companies and websites. The company asked for a simple, monochrome branding, that would be attractive and reflect the companies architectural designs.

This is a compilation of my designs for a logo for Edit architecture. I did many different designs so I could develop and redesign parts of it to get the perfect idea. I firstly pursued solely text as the client wanted a simple monochrome design. However, I then looked a other architecture logos and realised that some had very minimal design with lines or a symbol. Therefore I developed my designs and added lines and small imagery. I tried to go along the lines of architecture/interior designs by using straight lines and even attempting to make one design look like a blueprint. I kept changing and altering parts of the logo and I finally found a symbol that I thought represented the company well. This design is the 3D ‘E’ that also looks like a 3D design of 3 floors of a building. I was quite proud of this design as I thought it worked well and implies 2 different sides to the company, which was interiors and exteriors. I then went on to add very minimal, pale and pastel colours to the design to see if it could be applied to different aspects. I also tried to create a business card using the logo I designed and the colour scheme that I decided on.

I really enjoyed creating a logo for a real company as it helped to know what they were really about and to have them say what kind of concept they wanted. I also realised how important it is to look at existing designs and take inspiration from these.

RELOC8

The next project that I worked on was a website for an estate agency called ‘Reloc8’. It was so fun working on a real website and learning how to add buttons, images, banners, text and other aspects to a working website. On the following screenshots, it shows some of the additions I made to the website, which included the banners at the top of each page and buttons on the pages that takes customers to other pages on the website. The website is now live which is really exciting to know that I worked on something that will actually be used.

 

After working with Emphasis, I have realised how much I love designing and how much I would love to do it in the future. I will strive to try to work with more design agencies and work on live projects as I think it really helps with my confidence in my designs and it helped me to overcome problems and think of a way to get around them.

BEDOW

Bedow is a design agency based in Stokholm, Sweden and it started when Perniclas Bedow lost his day job at an advertising agency, he then decided to create his own company. The company now has 4 designs and often employs interns that are graduates.

Perniclas Bedow said ‘Since we spend more than half of our lives at work, I think the most important thing is that we work with clients we like. Working with clients we like also makes us care and I think you can see that in our work. So the answer would be that it is mutual — careful work attracts careful clients and vice versa.’ I think this is really important as if you’re not interested in the work, the work won’t be good. But you also have to work well with the people you are designing for as you need to understand the goal.

Bedow’s design process is as follows: ‘We have a quite rational design process. We set up a strategy together with the client and decide what is relevant to communicate. When we have boiled everything down to one keyword, we start thinking about how to visualise that word. Those who take a closer look at our portfolio can probably spot a keyword in many of our projects.’

After looking over the work on their website, I really like the work that they create as it is really fun and quirky. However, I do like other projects more than others, as I think some designs are slightly boring and do not attract my attention straight away.

Firstly, I really like their album cover design for ‘It’s Time For…’ by The Hope Singers.

I really love the colour palette they used for the whole cover and I think the colours really stand out against the brown cardboard background. The text and the images are screen printed, which I was really interested in because I love the process and outcome of this technique. I love the font they have used as each letter is different and I love the little illustrations created for the front and the extra booklet.

My attention was also caught by the little monster on their website, which had ‘Fable’ written underneath.

I love the really simple colour scheme they have used as it allows viewers to focus on the fun illustrations. ‘Fable’ is a new skate brand aimed at skaters that want to ride and make a difference at the same time. Half of Fable’s profit goes to charity — mainly to projects that keep skateboarding an inclusive sport. The assignment included a logotype, character design, color palette, illustrations, merchandise, naming, patterns, skateboard design, animations and typography.

This style is really interesting to me as the quirky and strange characters is something that I would like to design in the future, if the right project pops up.

In contrast to the simple colour scheme of the previous project, this visual identity and communication concept for BAAAM — a digital destination delivering engaging lifestyle content for young women, has many bright but pastel colours. I really love the patterns and colours which contrast with the flowing white text.

I think the patterns and colours really will appeal to women, which is who it is aimed at. I am really inspired by the designs of this particular project.

And finally, Bedow has created a brand strategy for Dohop — one of the top flight search engines in the world. Assignment included logotype, custom typefaces, color palette, illustrations, animations, pictograms and stationery.

Again, this project is really playful and fun. I love the line drawn pictograms and how they’re paired with the simple, but computerised font. This project’s goal was to make holiday shopping more fun, which I think has been successful as the small images and the colour scheme make it less boring.

CHARLIE SMITH DESIGN

After researching and trying to find more inspiration for further work, I came across a company called Charlie Smith Design. They are a ‘studio made up of passionate people who love nothing more than finding thoughtful and engaging solutions to our clients’ problems. Founded in 2003 by Charlie Smith (ex Pentagram), it has grown into a team of talented and dedicated designers and project managers.’ They have created work of all forms such as print, identity, digital, packaging and exhibition design. I like how versatile they are and how different each of their designs are. I really like all of their work and from scrolling through their website, each image ?stands out for different reasons.

They stated their values in their ‘About’ page:

‘We believe that collaboration results in better design, so we work closely with our clients – all of whom have a direct relationship with Charlie. We have also built a select network of independent specialists such as photographers, copywriters, and programmers giving us the flexibility to deliver projects large and small. We don’t follow fads. We believe in timeless design that will continue to serve our clients year after year. We push our clients creatively, while ensuring they always end up with a design that feels uniquely theirs.’

Over 14 years they have worked with some amazing clients such as John Lewis, V&A, Louis Vuitton, Yale, University of the Arts London and Tate.

This is their process that they use to create designs. This would be useful to return to when I create my own designs. They also collaborate with lots of different design areas, which is useful to know as I would like to explore working with other people in my designs as I think working in a team helps to achieve a better result as you can take different ideas and opinions into account.

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These are some logos they have created for different companies. I love how they can go from creating something really simple and concise, such as the symbol for Namu Lux, to the logo ‘Tagliatelle’ which is quite playful and unusual.  logos

 

My favourite designs created by this company is everything for ‘Byron’ the fast food restaurant. I love the logo they created, and how the identity of the brand links in with everything they have designed.

Overall, I love the fun, playful and illustrated designs they create but I also like the simple identities, logos and packaging they create. Such as the labels for babywear in John Lewis which has a simple line drawn logo, but also the logo for the Baker’s workshop, which is a simple black and white, negative space logo.

 

I am really inspired by the designs created by this company, especially the Byron designs as I am really interested in the fun and playful illustrations some of their designers have created. I think it’s really important as a design company to expand and explore to different types and styles of design and I think Charlie Smith design has done this really well.

IKON AND BIRMINGHAM ART GALLERY

SUNDAY 25TH JUNE

I visited the IKON gallery and the Birmingham Art Gallery to widen my views on art and to see more artists to get more inspiration for future art. However, it wasn’t very successful as the type of art I am interested in was not shown at either of the art galleries. Not only was the type of art there that I liked, but it wasn’t useful or inspiring either. I didn’t look at anything and think ‘I have a new idea’. I still took photos though, as I thought some were interesting and slightly strange!

At the IKON, I was most interested in the sign when I walked in, as I thought it was eye-catching and an effective font. There was an artist that used spray paint to create portraits and then an artist that created bowls out of metal and placed them around the room. I thought that the artist who used the spray paint used effective colours on one of the portraits, as shown in the image above. I then went to Birmingham art gallery which was full of fine art and I didn’t think this was really relevant. I did like the architecture though and one of the exhibits was modern art, which I thought was really weird, but I did like one piece of art, the one shown in the last image.

I will continue to visit art galleries and view the different art they have to offer as I think it is a good way to widen my interests.

BIRMINGHAM BOTANICAL GARDENS

SATURDAY 24TH JUNE

In my work, I have always been interested in drawing and painting flowers and plants. Therefore, I thought it would be useful to visit somewhere to build up a collection of my own photos of this subject matter so I can go back to them at a later date to draw from and to use as references. I loved the large array of plants that was there and luckily the flowers were in bloom so I got a lot of good photos!

I really love the textures, colours and patterns of the plants that were there. I would love to use them as backgrounds for my future design work, but also as projects that require flowers and plants. I think they would also be useful for stationary, book covers, posters, album covers and anything else that would have patterns. I love the colour scheme that has appeared with the images, mainly green with red, pink or orange, which makes the warm colours stand out.

CALKE ABBEY

FRIDAY 23RD JUNE

I visited this National Trust House in Derby to see the lovely architecture and the gardens that it had to offer. I liked the dainty flowers and the building and I would like to explore how these would look in line drawings.

 

I would like to create something similar to the following photos, but including the house too, as I think its important to explore different areas and subject matters.

 

LIZZIE HILLIER STUDIO

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One of my main inspirations is Lizzie Hillier who I first found on Instagram. I love the colour choices and the quirky patterns and textures, which is what draws me to her designs. I love the handmade looking textures due to the use of paintbrushes, which contrast well with the flat colours. I would love to take inspiration from this artist to create my own patterns and textures, but to also combine handmade designs and computer made colours or textures. The playfulness of the designs is something I wish to create. I think the patterns would be effective for children, for example stationary.

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I love how she cuts shapes out of patterned paper and then collages it as it helps the image to become more spontaneous and the layers can build up while still staying opaque.

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The colour schemes she uses work really well together and the bright blue, for example in this image, stands out well against the black and white patterns.

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It’s really inspiring how she prints the same pattern in different coloured ink and on different coloured paper as it allows for experimentation. It also helps with creating more designs and a larger range of ideas. I will try to do this in my future work as it will help me to find the best design if I create lots of ideas.

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It is also inspiring how she uses different medias to create patterns. I would like to explore different ways of creating my designs through various techniques.

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Overall, I really love her work and how unusual it is and I will take inspiration from this for my work in the future.