Wednesday, 29 April 2009

George Hardie

This is an image I really like from an album cover of a band I really love. It is the 'Dark side of the moon' cover for Pink Floyd designed by George Hardie. It is a bold image using shape and colour with an intersting use of black space. It has been an influence on my latest illustration on 'The office party' in which i've used a black background rather than a white one as Ive been doing for a while now

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Blaikie's Guide to Modern Manners

This is another book I'm reading for my major project- 'Blaikies Guide to Modern Manners'. It is written in a different style to 'Debretts Modern Manners' which I'm reading too. It is more stories and accounts of people's experiences relating to manners and etiquette rather than dictionary style definitions like Debretts but I find both books useful and have used them to respond to visually. This book seems quite humurous which is an important element of my work.

Monday, 13 April 2009

Ben Jones

During the formation of my 'on the spot' illustration I was looking at the YCN agency website and after being told about an ex student from Stockport College- Ben Jones being part of their agency when we visited the agency office in London, so I looked him up. This illustration caught my eye, I'm guessing that Jones is saying that a company will bend over backwards for their employees but I didn't get that at first. I was drawn to the hands which I mistook for forks and then when the image is turned to portrait length it looked like the character had its hands up.

Mr Bean/ Band on the run

This cover from the 1973 album 'Band on the run' by The Wings was an influence on my 'On the spot' illustration mainly because of the spotlight catching the characters out. I was suprised to see a few well known faces including Michael Parkinson and Christopher Lee dressed up as prisoners.

Also I used to love Mr Bean as a child particularly because he behaves like a child so there was an instant ifinity with the character. Mr Bean tended to be very slapstick in humour and I remember finding his behaviour, mannerisms and expressions funny. What was interesting is that I thought that Mr Bean is hinted at being alien because of the intro seeing a spotlight and the character hitting the floor as if dropped from a UFO. This is also what has influenced my 'On the spot' illustration particularly the spotlight.

On the spot!

This is an illustration I have produced for my major project to do with table manners. When you go to a restaurant especially when in the company of people you don't know that well it can feel like a daunting experience and we often say we feel "on the spot". I felt a good way to show this was to use a spotlight like in film when a prisoner would be escaping they would be caught out by the spotlight and they would freeze. I like combining objects associated with a subject and composing them in what loosely resembles a person- they become a character.


When film and TV is so successful to a mass audience like Doctor Who and James Bond they are christenend 'Cult'. And one cult film that enjoyed success in 1999 was 'The Matrix' which I remember feeling was so different especially the idea that were are all part of a computer simulation. What stood out to me most was the green codes that has become one of the defining aesthetic elements of the film. This also was going through my mind when composing my dress code illustration.

Never say never again intro

While composing the idea for my dress code illustration one of the things that was going through my mind was the intro to the Warner Bros remake of Thunderball in 1983 called 'Never Say never again'. The film's ok but not in my view brilliant but what stuck in my mind was the way the film began with a pattern made out of 007 numbers, I thought this was an interesting way to open the film where the traditional gunbarrel would have been used. In actual fact this was because of a dispute between the rights to the original Thunderball so because of copyright it was not allowed to be used. Entertainment wise the things I like are programmes and films that are popular to a mass audience so they become long running like household names but I also like to see challenging of tried and tested ideas within them so long running programmes and films can appear fresher and more rounded.

Abram Games

One of my all time favourite graphic designers is Abram Games. He is credited as one of the most successful and influential graphic designers of the twentieth century and it is not difficult to see why. The communication of messages in his work are strong and his style is instantly recognisable. Maximum meaning minimum means is the addage that he used favouring simple designs with a powerful message and I strongly believe in this notion. His clients were Shell, The Financial Times, London Transport, British Airways, United Nations and Guiness. He also during the second World War was made poster artist designing 100 posters for the war effort. His career in the industry spanned 60 years and was once when describing his work was quoted as saying, 'I wind the spring, and the public in looking at the poster will have that spring released in its mind'. I would love to achieve the same success and influence that Games did in his lifetime. One of Games's posters that has influenced my newest illustration on dress code is for the Finacial Times seen above. I love the way the object of a newspaper is combined with a pair of legs so it becomes a character.

'Dress Code'- Illustration

This is my illustration for the dresscode element of manners and etiquette. I'm still not happy with it and feel that a few minor alterations need to be done on it but I feel the idea is a strong one.

Sunday, 12 April 2009

Colin Baker

As it may be apparent from the frequency of posts about Dr Who on my blog it is fair to say it is a major influence on my work. Looking at classic Dr Who through adult eyes I find that the storylines, scenes, effects, costumes and sets weren't always realised as effectively as they could have been with a few gems here and there. But it didn't affect my enjoyment of it as a child as you see things differently and there was a charm about the programme.
The 6th Doctor was played by Colin Baker, not a personal favourite of mine but the character has influenced one of my manners and etiquette Illustrations. Colin Baker is remembered among other things as the Doctor with the clashing frock coat. It was recommended by the producer at the beginning of his era that the character's coat should be 'totally tasteless' which many would agree affected Baker's performance in a negative way.
The coat is what has inspired my latest illustration which covers 'Dress Code'. Baker's coat is made out of different patterns, colours and textures and it is impossible to see how the coat could be appropriate for any social occassion, it is anti social. My illustration combines suit dress appropriate for formal occasions and business situations with a jumper for casual occasions. The styles clash, the suit has a barcode pattern and the jumper is decorated with morse code as I wanted to communicate the code part of dress. You may ask the dress code of a place or occasion which is why I've incorporated a question mark as a coat hanger.