Lecture 1 – introduction to project

Do you have any interests that you are highly into? Things that catch your eye processing to your mind really getting you, thinking hard about this interest. Designs form around interests and ideas. Its logic. As the developing process develops forward from your ideas focusing and expanding these interests we think what can we change to improve and how we can go about doing so. Can we make the world a better place in today’s society?

Throughout the next 12 weeks we will be having 12 different lectures lasting just under 2hours long expanding our minds personally within the design world. This project called ‘Gamswen’. We will have to produce as a final outcome an animation, a film or a magazine article any medium of our choice. On each lecture which will be feature them in our final and then from one out of the 12 lectures we will have to choose one lecture and focus more on the lecture we found most interesting to us personally.

We discussed as a whole class how do we learn best personally. This is how I personally learn best:

I listen

I do

I develop

This basically guides us to how we design and how our processes work personally.

At the end of the lecture we was asked to create a twitter accound so that we could get updates on the latest lectures and information quicker which is easier.

Lecture 2 – Vaughan Oliver

In todays lecture we got a small insight with just a brief description of his life as a graphic designer. Vaughan spoke to us about music in general and said that music plays a big part in his work, which is of course true as music can be used nowadays to inspire work or change/develop moods. Vaughan found somebody that then started to lead him to designing record sleeves and also mentioned his own perspective of some of his work he did for some companies using typography. The person Vaughan found was already starting a record label that then decided to take on Vaughan on to assist with some designs for his record label as Vaughan had passion for both music and design wanting a way to combine the two. Vaughan done collaborations with many artist designers and photographers to create and develop graphic materials due to him agreeing the idea of people’s thoughts and processes combined to create a new item or graphic.

Vaughan disliked typography during his younger days during his school period but this then caused him to use simple plain and low use of typography. As a result this develops simplistic but powerful visual on his designs. This mad Vaughan a more creative and braver person when it came to design. On the other hand at a point in his career where this was a highlight to Vaughan he managed to have his own record label which he produced all the design materialistic stuff for promotional purposes for 2-3 years.

From this lecture I have learnt personally that inspiration plays a big role in general for people to then develop in their own ways for a better cause. Also once you pass the inspiration point being independent or even have the right people around you will get you really far in life overall. Inspiration is everywhere your own self is an inspiration to others; it’s just another constant cycle to keep the process running.

Lecture 3 Neil Spiller

Neil spiller explained to us from at a young age he had quite a few interests in the architectural department of design. Straight away from Neil’s speech I realized that he had many inspirers as he grew up which is very important for anybody that has focused interests in things as they grow up.

Neil Spiller is a professor of the digital theory in architecture. He is also an artist and architect who is the director of the technological architecture research group. Neil mentioned that he had worked with the graphic designer Vaughn Oliver on a few occasions, which on one occasion they made a book together.

Neil Spiller had our attention focused on surrealism architecture and symbolic means to some imagery he showed us throughout the lecture. In my personal opinion I found it quite hard to understand what Neil had been communicating throughout his work but what I managed to notice and understand was that Neil stated that architects that produce work that may have a dynamic visual to it which appear complex think that they will always appear to be eye catching which isn’t always true so Neil’s statement is correct in my opinion.

Another topic Neil Spiller brought up was genetics and personalities. He stated that what people design and produce will always hint something about that person personally. I agree with this statement because for example if somebody created a smooth structure that was in the colour blue this may indicate that the person lives a calm lifestyle and has patience. In other words what u create will always be apart of you, which is an important fact in life because people will always think what are you communicating in your work and what sort of person are you.

May your personality help you whenever you are stuck with an idea? Let your final outcome determine that.

Lecture 4 Nic Clear

Nic clear had us focused on knowing that his main interests were in working with film and animation. Nic clear is a graphic designer and a architect. These two aspects together, Nic clear produces digital design work. Nic clear discussed with us a few of his processes and developments through his personal ideas. Nic Clear also mentioned that he is a course director of an architectural school who specify and work with animation and motion graphics.

We were asked a question by Nic Clear ‘who designed the Gherkin’. Everybody answered ‘Norman foster’. Once Nic Clear said that we got the answer wrong it he explained to us that Norman fosters name got left on the buildings production whilst actually a colleague of the team created the original idea. Nic clear also said that the dilemma in todays society other people are just claiming credit for someone else’s hard earned work.

Nic Clear claims that without drawing you can not create a piece of architecture which in my opinion is true because as Nic explained how drawings show the dynamic visuals of designs before the architecture construction comes into play.

From a range of ideas through hard thinking and sketches buildings we see today are dynamic and complicated which Nic Clear indicated that architects aim for complex and avoid any hints of simplicity. Today most buildings involve powerful geometric structures, which help create the complex, architects aim for.

Nic Clear opened up new ways and possibilities we could develop our design skills by showing us short clips from past students where 2D and 3D spaces were explored through different media qualities in design. I’ve realized that staying with one form of media isn’t always the best way to design because using on form of media limits you which may bring up problems with certain things that you want to do you end up not being able to do.

As a conclusion to Nic clears lecture with the right frame of mind anything is possible through developments and processes. Nothing is impossible.

Lecture 5 – Stacey Pitsilides

In this lecture with Stacey Pitsilades she spoke to us about death and what happens to you as a being in relation to everyone else in the world that know you once you pass away. To give us a clearer understanding on what was said to us Stacey first of all showed us a video she made as a final when she was an undergraduate student called ‘the resting pixels’. Next Stacey discussed online visual communication known as social networking such as Facebook/twitter etc. Stacey said ‘people use forms of visual death on social networks to display what we are thinking and how we feel’. When people pass away their families will write newsfeeds saying ‘rip’ and also their own personal profiles will still be able to visually be viewed even after they have passed away. An archive of photos still remain of the diseased from their past on twitter/Facebook which Stacey stated that ‘this is a community description’.

Another topic that was brought up by Stacey was the use of technology now rather than before. ‘The archive is to burn with passion it is to never rest’ said by Jacques Derrida 1996. In relation to this statement uncovering the archive is how we collect things and because we have such advanced technology around us today we practically live our lives through technology for example the 1st thing we do before we go to bed and wake up in the morning is look at our phones. This changes the way we think which is how much of an impact technology has on us today. Stacey stated that technology isn’t just a tool because we live in a different way. Today the progress of where images go is so much different than in the past. The timeline of technology has progressed to a point where we cannot loose any old images of ourselves unless obviously we deleted them.

The virtual world will always be linked to reality. Without the virtual world where would we be in todays society?

Lecture 6 Rachel Armstrong

The architectural designer and scientist Rachel Armstrong combines the use of natural and built environments creating interesting and inspiring designs using synthetic biology. Synthetic biology is a form of technology and research that combines both engineering and science as a pair. Rachel explained to us that to summarize what synthetic biology was is that construction and design is how new biological functions and systems not figured out by nature.

One thing that caught my attention about Rachel was that she said she had a major interest in cells and bacteria (living organisms) which is where synthetic biology comes to affect but she never actually got to study synthetic biology in the end while studying. Through hard research into looking in depth about synthetic biology Rachel wanted to from cells create live like buildings that were architecturally solid for people to live in.

Rachel brought up the fact that the things around us are constantly changing year by year. Buildings, technology etc. In Rachel’s eyes in todays society the worlds becoming cramp with buildings ridding all the grassy landscapes that are left causing more and more pollution meaning that the natural cells that once existed are going year by year. An example of this is the landscape that existed before the 2012 Olympics was covered in green landscape but is now covered in stadiums buildings and machines.

In relation to this Rachel earlier mentioned leprosy, which is a disease that causes people to change once they get it by bacteria. Leprosy can then causes you to sometimes lose parts of your body the bacteria progresses in your body.

Personally this strongly relates to evolution and the way people either understand or not understand it. We as a society are growing and changing very fast especially with the technology around us helping us in and out of the architecture and design side of things.

Lecture 7 – Mark Ingham

What have I learnt so far?

So far I’ve learnt that sticking to basics will never be the best way when comes to design. The last 6 lectures we have had have been hugely influential to me changing the way I think when comes to design. A perfect example was Rachel Armstrong talking to us about the interest in cells and architecture. Also another perfect example was Stacey Pitsillides talking to us about cyber death and the fact that our personal archives will always be existent after we pass away on social networks such as Facebook for example where our photos will be available for others like family and friends to still view to remember you.

How do I learn?

The 3 best ways I personally learn is I, Listen, do and develop. As the last 6 weeks have passed my learning processes have been a major help to me especially with my typography projects to date. Personally I think when things become difficult I tend to just do and when something’s comes to mind I strongly like I develop.

What is a record?

Mark mentioned about what a record is. When asked what a record was there was two meanings given by other students. (A record is something you use to play on a musical device) & (A record is something you physically record with a device or listen to in your head storing information). Mark said in order to help us complete our projects well without any last minute confusion its best we record every bit of information told to us even along the way before the deadline to give us a clearer understanding and guidance which is very useful in my opinion.

Critical thinking skills

Personally when I think about designing when I first started the course, I would just focus on one thought and just work around that idea but as I have progressed through uni I have released that when you think of one thing there are so many things that can be associated with it which helps expand your thinking processes for example in my ‘you – the product’ project my object was a MIDI keyboard which lead my thoughts to thinking about music waves and touch which then lead after the 5 senses after relating to this braille, morse code, social networking, body language, sign-language, voice and hearing-aids.

Lecture 8 Mark Ingham – Manifesto

Passions and Growing up

From young I have had many things I was interested in even now to date. Many passions for things that come and go. From the age of 9 I had a huge interest in Lego block always building structures that the instructions gave and even made my own structures, which was quite interesting. I even discovered that I had a talent for drawing my favorite cartoon characters like homer Simpson, Bart Simpson etc. As I grew older in school and college I focused on architecture and graphic design because my passion for making the world a better place someday from my production means a lot to me. To date I made a decision that I preferred graphic design to architecture because advertising inspires me a lot.

Manifesto or Statement ?

Mark Ingham discussed with us what a manifesto is and what the difference is between a manifesto and a statement. A manifesto is a personal belief not always a religious belief. A statement is something that someone personally says. Mark asked us if he says, “be the type of person you want to meet, is this a manifesto or a statement?” Most people answered manifesto. Mark said to us we were wrong meaning that what he said was actually a statement.

Later individually we were asked to come up with our own manifestos. My personal manifesto is ‘I believe knowing is the key to success’. I personally think that if I know something that will work for example an idea, the idea after obvious development will be successful. The bad thing about my manifesto is that there are people out in the world In the past that didn’t know much and just done what was right in their eyes and now their personally known for it (successful). A perfect example of this is the designer David Carson never knew that there was rules when it came to graphic design until he was told he had broken them now in todays society he is a well known graphic design/grunge artist.

‘I believe knowing is the key to success’

Lecture 9 – Mark Ingham Animation

This lecture was about the world of animation and how it has developed through the years that has now become very useful to people in todays society. Mark pointed out that the joy of animation lets you make anything into something constructive for example making a still object an object that moves of does something else from its original function creating narratives. Animation doesn’t just have to be made from an item. Animations can be made from multiples of drawings put together to create a movement, which does take a long time to do, but the more time taken to make an animation the better the final product will be as I have learnt from my animation project I started a few weeks ago.

Without physical movement there is no such thing as animation. In relation to this in real life you could say that people all over the world including myself are animated. We are constantly on the move doing thing by thing. When we blink is a perfect example of this. Of course the reality is that people aren’t animated. Another thing is animation doesn’t always have to be 2dimentional it can also be 3dimentional as we see in films nowadays for example ‘toy story’.

Animation is fast display of sequences of drawings or images, which can be 2dimentional or 3dimentional from artwork or model positions that create illusions of movement. This can be presented in many ways. It is known that the most common way to present/create an animation is motion pictures or video programs even though there are other ways to do so. A easy way to explain how these are put together is if there was a domino and we wanted to present a animation of it falling of over a duration of 10seconds you would have to have its starting frame of the domino standing still then each frame taken will have to be taken bit by bit at every angle of which the domino falls that leads to the domino laying flat on the ground after being knocked over which would be the final frame taken.

There are many different types of animation in today’s society. Motion drawing, traditional animation, stop motion, computer animation, 2D animation, and 3D animation. All have similarities with each other in the process methods.  Traditional animation normally consists of photos of drawings that start off being drawn on paper each drawing being a slightly different from the drawing before. Mainly used in the 20th century. Real world things being manipulated photographing frame by frame to create a movement do stop motion. Clay animation is a perfect example of this. The children’s TV series ‘Pengu’ the penguin made from clay that came out round in the 1990’s. Computer animation is done only on computers which you would normally find on websites or social networks that have moving images for example msn messenger the smiley faces move which are computer animations. 2D and 3D animation are also made on the computer. The difference between the two is 3D animation is normally digitally manipulated where as 2D animation isn’t.

In relation to animation growing up many cartoons were watched by myself. As I grew older cartoons started being made differently quality of cartoons was getting better visually due to the technology around us etc. The first animated cartoon I remember 1st made was ‘steam boat willy’ which made a huge impact to the world to date. Following ‘steam boat willy’ more and more Japanese animations came around which then developed to cartoons such as early stages of ‘The Simpsons’ followed by futurama then Anime cartoons such as ‘Beyblade’, ‘Pokemon’, ‘Yu-Gi-Oh’ started. These 3 Anime cartoons in particular made a huge impact to children all over the world because toys and games and playing cards were made based on these programs along with which stood out  ‘Beyblade’ which was a development from spinning tops were mass produced engaging children buying them and playing with them all over the world. Anime is another word for Japanese animation. Normally the characters that appear in these anime cartoons are shown by colourful graphics. The audience for anime in japan has huge recognition especially all over the world.

Another thing interesting about all of this is that because more and more cartoons and films were coming to life around us year by year the demand of people that watched television grew which then made another impact to the world of higher and better quality television made so that television was visually viewed as we see the world with our own eyes as we currently know as 1080p which is the highest quality television you can buy with 3dimentional compatibility which engages us with the stuff we watch almost seeming life like (real). The films to date that are made nowadays are being reproduced in 3D so that everyone can re-watch their favorite old-school films at their local cinemas.

We were shown a video called ‘robots of Brixton’ made by Kibwe Tavares. This is a video was a major example of high quality animation. The video was based on a robot city and showed how they were built to carry out tasks used as machines and tools to fight and cause damage hinting some sort of message of danger when the word robot comes to mind. The best part that got me thinking was the relation on the video showing robots rioting fighting each other same as what us and people result in when we are not happy with things that have happened to cause a major effect to the world. This video shows a prime example of what life would be like as a robot. The type of animation the video is in my opinion is a 3D computer animation because the robots are digitally manipulated to move.

The power of animation is truly inspiring. When you really get engaged with your thoughts you really get the passion to be out there making differences and impacts to society

‘Creating new life’

Lecture 10 – Simon Herron

To start the lecture off Simon Herron spoke about the origins of drawing and the history behind an archigram he showed us called ‘walking city’. Within the composition the title is self-explanatory. The archigram is of a city of strange organic shaped structures that have leg like forms on them as if the city in the composition is moving. Interestingly the detail in the archigram focused me on the quality of the drawing overall and the paper that it was actually on which work well together making me think for future reference the paper I use to print or draw on shows quality.

A quote Simon made ‘making something visible, invisible’. Simon showed us some student work which started getting me thinking the meaning of what Simon quoted actually meant many thoughts came to mind and I personally came to conclusion that something I have already designed for example was loaded with detail and then take more and more detail off of the original composition to see what would happen, is this what might have been meant by Simon.

Drawing isn’t really used as much as it used to before meaning in todays society we lack artists due to the developing technology around use changing become more and more useful to us in everyday life. Programs such as Photoshop, in-design etc. a lot of people to date use them as an ‘easier route’ to design. Another dilemma is due to the development of companies and newer companies popping up the world obviously need more and more designers to help create webpages, flyers, business cards etc. for promotional purposes and advertisement for companies to then find their target markets etc. in my opinion drawing is very useful when it comes to coming up with ideas using sketches because when you scan ideas in and develop them on computers you can move back and forth progressing detail within your work.

‘making something visible, invisible’

Lecture 11 – Neil Spiller

Neil Spiller returned and gave us another lecture but this time on surrealism. Surrealism is visual imagery, which is a form of art that psychologically challenges your mind by using hidden messages. Sometimes the concept behind surrealism consists of a range of drawings/images, which creates a overall image of something that isn’t real for example a dogs head on an cats body.

Neil showed us a Spanish surrealist called Salvador Dali. Salvador Dali is famous for his abstract surrealist paintings. Some of Dali’s work was interesting because they had consisted of huge details in the compositions.

Neil Spiller also showed us some surrealist work he done which included different compositions of mannequins that were overlaid over rough textured compositions. The mannequins were strangely shaped which Neil explained sometimes mannequins have stuff going on in their stomachs.

An image that caught my attention was a mannequin that had its head in-between his legs on the ground in a sitting down stance. The visual aspect of the mannequin in a sitting down stance makes you image an actually chair there that isn’t technically there which is possibly part of the psychology of surrealism.

The other images that had been showed to us were quite strange and hard to understand. There was an image in particular where there were hands in the corners of the composition creatinging un natural textures standing out amongst most work Neil had showed us.

Overall all of the images that were shown to us had high quality detail, which made the compositions complex visually. You could also say that the concept of detail was some sort of decoration to what was actually happening in the images. Also in my opinion Neil’s surrealist work strongly relates to architecture because enhanced detail within his compositions show much texture displaying geometrical structures visually.

Lecture 12 – Conclusion

In our final lecture we watched some videos and spoke about how our actual final product will be like and ways to avoid making it boring dull etc. overall we had to figure out how to put together all of the lectures as a whole as if we was the reader of our final product. Depending on how we wanted to put together our final product would depend on the content that will be inside. Images, quotes, own designs etc. the content can be anything we want to suite as if someone else was reading it. My target audience is for people that in my eyes get inspired easily and also let their inspirers be apart of their own work as they progress and develop. I personally asked some of my classmates whether they preferred double page spreads and also what the advantages were to double page spreads. My feedback was that with a double page spread you have more space to places everything on but the disadvantage was that if there isn’t a lot of content to be laid then there would be too much space available to fill.

The lectures I liked best were Stacey Pitsillides, Rachel Armstrong and Mark Ingham (animation lecture).  The reason behind this is because the influence I gained got me thinking about ways I can expand my thinking processes and also design development processes in better ways that will help me to never run out of ideas when the going gets tough because I known personally that giving up after trying is the worst thing you could possibly do in general.

As a conclusion to the project you can never know enough. Knowing enough only wants you to know more. Influences and inspirations will always be around you especially when things get hard to deal with. Passions push you further to hit your goals.

‘Knowing enough’

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