Tag Archives: concepts

Working On: Business Cards

I’ve been working hard on business cards for what feels like forever, and I’m aiming for three different business card designs:
1. Double-sided design to give to people in person for impressions
(this might end up being a one-sided design with an open space on the back for comments about our meeting, like ‘Thanks for the coffee! Call me!’)
2. One-sided awesome design to leave places and give to people that are awesome/close friends/know me already
(something bold and exciting that doesn’t have to match all the other boring ‘branded stuff’)
3. One more simple design for super professional settings and to go in the folder of my press kit
(that matches my resume well, and just looks polished)

Why do I want to do so many different cards? Because I like to have options, and I think it’s important to be prepared. Having a variety of cards lends itself well to different situations and different meetings with people of various backgrounds (small firms, more out-there firms, large corporations, you get the picture).

Here are my three different card ideas so far (please pardon my tardiness because I’ve come down with an awful cold this week):

1.) a two-sided card

Note that these are all still works in progress, because I haven’t really experimented with typefaces too much yet (at least not much on the card pictured above).

2.) the one-sided card

I like the design of this card a lot, but it doesn’t really match anything else. I think that’s okay. Maybe? I think it would be fun to print it with a reversed copy on the back, so it sort of shows you that it’s one-sided, instead of just being blank on the back. There’s still some fine-tuning that needs to be done with the information text so that it’s a little more readable, but I really do like this design. (This design is like my baby, I really like it ever so much, but I think that more traditional designers would say that if I like it so much, I should let it go.)

3.) simple

This is the one that would be tucked into a press-kit folder, and therefore doesn’t have a back to show people. It’s a little shy, I suppose. It also might need some extra information about me, but then it feels too cluttered. We’ll see.

In class the other day we were discussing that business cards might become obsolete with the use of smart phones and QR codes (those pixelated squares that you can scan and information pops up). I don’t believe that we’ll truly become separated from our analog, physical objects for a long time, if ever. I just don’t think enough people will own and use smart phones to make QR codes the standard, and to forget business cards altogether. What do you think?

♥eth

Ps. The top photo is from Brand New, a website that showcases re-branding of major companies, and shows the re-branding and new logo of Time Warner Cable. I enjoy browsing through their posts to see how companies try to keep themselves ‘modern’; always interesting to read the comments, too (which usually come from fellow designers).

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Currently Working On…Alphabet Cards + IDSA Shirts

I’m still working on IDSA shirts when I’m not President anymore?! Not exactly! The current officers are doing a ‘shirt contest’ for this years iDSA shirts and I submitted one design (so far). As I said before, I was working on creating I, D, S and A out of objects and I think the final result is pretty nice.


And some progress on the beginning of the ‘designer tools alphabet cards’. I’ve been steadily researching and writing out different things that make letters (which, to be honest, probably looks like crazy-person-talk if you don’t know what I’m doing because in no way does ‘olfa’ = ‘i’). There’s a printing place near by, Prima, that does cards that are the size I want (something in between 2″x3″ and 4″x6″) but I haven’t talked to them about doing small runs of different images yet. Yesterday I bought myself a rounded corner punch so that I can design the outlines, etc. better.

Here’s my super awesome ‘Ii’ card so far:
That snapped off blade is really clever, right? Right.
More to come! As always!

♥eth

PS. any constructive feedback on either design is very welcome!

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Inspired: Objectified

I’ve started a personal project inspired by this poster for the movie Objectified: A Documentary Film by Gary Hustwit. The poster was designed by Build and I love the way they make letters out of objects (not a fresh idea, per-say, but always a great one when executed well).

*As an aside, if you haven’t seen Objectified, I highly recommend it. It’s a fascinating documentary about – duh – objects. If you’re a designer, it is an easy and interesting way to explain design to your friends/family – and if you’re not a designer, it’s still fascinating because of all the interesting concepts that are brought up (i.e. the relationship of cars to their owners)

I’m working on two different ‘alphabets’ – one made of famous designs (like the Panton chair making an ‘S’), and one set of letters made of tools used to ‘design’ (various tools and crafting objects, etc.). I already have the letters I, D, S, and A done because I put them together for a t-shirt competition for this year’s IDSA @ GT.

Progress will be posted ASAP 🙂

♥eth

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on re-focusing “fun in the kitchen”

Unfortunately, I got really discouraged and overwhelmed this weekend trying to learn too much about children, etc., and trying to come up with brilliant concepts at the same time. I think I got so concerned about everything, that I shot myself in the foot before I even started sketching concepts. I feel more invigorated now, though, because I realized that all the research I’ve done is useful and that I do not have to stick with the three appliances I originally chose. After class today I’m going to go wander around Wal-mart and/or a toy store to look at toy mechanics and see what’s currently offered in the way of basic interactive toys [levers, cranks, cogs]. I want my appliances to be toy-like, but still get the job done. I think I lost focus on one of the important parts of my original brand concept – healthy food and nutrition.
So what other appliances or “tools” can relate to fresh produce, whole grains, and calcium? Apple and carrot peelers, pasta press, pudding molds, etc. I think I’ll stick with the ice cream maker, because who doesn’t like ice cream? Besides that, there are a lot more foods within the broad, important categories that I can focus on than the simple “fruit for smoothies” and “whole grains from fresh bread.”

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on being an update of sorts

WOO-HOO! I’m having another hell of a week; still don’t have any means with which to purchase things after a horrible incident in which I accidentally threw my precious, dearly loved Malcolm Fontier wallet at a hobo two weeks ago. I tried to food run at work today which was…and experience. I made eight whole dollars! And then spent half of that on my dinner. However, I am pleased with the progress I’ve accomplished on this kitchen appliance project – I did a ton of research and I feel like I know quite a bit. Now I just need to combine it all into really brilliant concepts for Friday – no big deal 🙂 – we just need “more of everything.”

I’m also really nervous-anxious-excited about IDSA elections because I’m running for president and I’d really like your vote! But seriously, I want to be IDSA president and I think I would do an incredible job because I’m enthusiastic, dedicated, and loud.
[Those aren’t the ONLY reasons I would be a rockin’ IDSA PREZ, just three basic, important ones. More to come via campaign video.]
(Megan worked on our video and she is amazing, in a nutshell. THANK YOU SO MUCH, MEGAN!!!)
The elections are this Friday at 12 so I’m a little on edge until then – not to mention I’m running as a party, with Jes, Sarah, and Randy [Randy doesn’t have a blog, sorry], AND we could technically be elected in part – not as a whole party – so there’s a lot of variables to deal with!

ALSO David’s come up with a wicked idea for us to make $$$ to get to NYC – and I’m super-duper excited [so excited I’m not embarrassed that I just wrote ‘super-duper’]! It’s a little too layered to try and explain in words minus some diagrams and magic, so I’ll just wait a few more days until we have something concrete I can direct you to. In other words, our class is going to go on a majestic trip to NYC and it should be the best experience we have as design students. Ever.
What do I want to get out of a trip to NYC? I want to have the experience of making a plan that’s pretty big-scale, following through, and accomplishing the goal. I also am incredibly excited about seeing the “design scene” in another big city. And bonding with my fellow students, of courseeeee.

AND FINALLY, I feel confident enough to answer that timeless question of “what do you wanna do with that degree when you graduate?” I would like to start my career doing design consulting/strategic design [think unboundary], but also dabble in ‘home decor’ type design [think furniture, lighting, coat racks shaped like antlers, etc.]
I think one of the lucky things about having a career in design is that you can find your niche, and you can always try something new if you don’t like what you’re doing. Sick of graphic design for company letterheads? Switch to lighting! Want to make a vase in your free time? Market that vase while you’re doing design consulting on the side. Ok, so in hindsight maybe I don’t have an answer at all – but I don’t feel bad about it anymore!

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two weeks down, one week (or so) to go!

I feel much better today after talking to David about my current (and final since it’s due SO soon) direction. I think I just needed some time to re-fresh and remember how to actually design things with more informed decisions, instead of just throwing things together without thinking. But honestly, I think I’ve always had a slight problem with keeping myself in a ‘designer’ mindset when I start projects. I’m not usually good at coming up with a set plan at the beginning of a project. I remember last year when we were given the ‘seating device’ assignment, Jes started almost the first day with concepts ONLY related to being cut out of one circle, focusing on multi-person seating. I started out drawing 50 different random things I saw around me like the bathroom lock, origami, trash – mostly in profile or top view because I just don’t seem able to think in 3D very quickly…

For the remainder of projects I work on in school, I want to try and focus down on one good ‘theme’ or ‘rule’ – like “what can i make out of a perfect circle?” – at the beginning of a project. In the end, I want my projects to come across stronger and more fully developed when I present them. Less “I couldn’t really find a direction until five days before the first pin-up, but I did really good work in those five days!”, and more “I started with this [insert cool idea of a start off point, like only using nouns instead of adjectives for your target words!] and went from a to b to c to d and ended with e with ease,” would be nice in my design life.
Another thing I’m going to try doing more often is giving myself more strict time limits on the things that I’m doing. An hour is quite a decently long amount of time, and if I don’t accomplish one important thing every hour – it seems like a waste. Whenever David gives us ‘real-life’ challenges in class, i.e. GO MAKE A POSTER IN 30 MINUTES OR YOU’RE FIRED, we seem to get a lot accomplished but whenever I’m on my own ‘just trying to sketch some concepts’ the blank paper and the seemingly endless amount of time messes with me.

The sketch models I lathed this week are serving as a really good starting point for the concept I’ve got now, drawing inspiration from a lotus (water lily) and a lily pad. Pink foam modeling isn’t really accurate enough for me (or just not very helpful with this particular project); maybe part of it is that I’m too impatient and need more practice using the wire cutter slowly. I think the proportions of my current models are dead on in size, but David mentioned somehow shelling the inside so that the overall weight and bulk would be less overwhelming and more ‘fresh’. I’m going to be doing a lot of 3D computer modeling and sketching this weekend to work out the super important details. We’re doing a silent pin-up on Wednesday to show all the process we’ve done, and then we’re doing “graphic treatments” for Friday I think? Soon, anyway.
Anyway, I’m relieved and excited to keep working on this now!

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on how I could conceptualize more efficiently

Is it better to ignore ideas that you think are tacky or over-done before you even develop them because then you’ll think about even more interesting things?
Or should you just do the tacky, over-done, boring crap first to get it out of the way/as your starting point?
I think I too often dismiss ideas just because I think they’re tacky or that they’ve been done before, instead of putting them on paper and going from there.

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Five to Two to One

My concepts are sort of weak as of late; I’m not putting enough process into the decisions I’m making (i.e. why on earth does the cup have that divot in it?), nor am I really thinking too hard about details (why is there a hole in it? won’t stuff simply fall out of it?) – which is really important, since all products are defined by their specific details. For whatever reason, I’ve decided to meld my words into some Asian themed set. I need to go back to the start and re-focus on what my words mean, draw upon the mood board I made for inspiration, look at what I’ve made so far, and then sketch something better.
None of my sets are really sending off the “family” vibe, hence I’m missing the whole point of the assignment.

fresh: beginning, brand-new, brisk, contemporary, crisp, crude, current, different, energizing, gleaming, glistening, green, hot, hot off the press, invigorating, latest, modern, modernistic, natural, newfangled, novel, now, original, radical, raw, recent, refreshing, sparkling, state-of-the-art, unconventional, unprocessed, unseasoned, untouched, unusual, warm

quirky: bizarre, far out, freakish, freaky, idiosyncratic, in left field, odd, off-the-wall, out of the ordinary, peculiar, strange, unconventional, unorthodox, unusual, wacky

honest: authentic, conscientious, decent, direct, equitable, ethical, fair, forthright, frank, genuine, honorable, impartial, ingenuous, just, like it is, no lie, open, outright, plain, proper, real, reliable, reputable, sincere, straight, straightforward, true, trustworthy, undisguised, upfront, upright, veracious, virtuous

revisions
This is simply my starting point. Now I need to make this all work.

And, as a final note, I seem to like “zen” things? This project is reminding me of the dish I made for my ‘Serenity Stone’ project and I’m starting to wonder if I’m a one-trick-zen-pony, if having a ‘style’ is good, or if I need to try something else because of that whole “do whatever wacky thing you can now before you go to the ‘real’ world” I often hear from teachers (?)

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moving right along

Today we presented the five concepts we created to the class, and then narrowed it down to two.
For Monday we need refined drawings in perspective, top view, side view, and section views as well as material samples and models.
I was a little disappointed in class with my drawings today when I realized that I really did not draw enough detail to explain the forms, but with practice I’m sure I’ll overcome my inability to understand the three-dimensionality of a tea cup – right?
David also mentioned that we should find other products that we feel represent the three words we’ve chosen for this project, and ask other people if they match our words. I’ve been browsing the interwebz and found a few things on Domus Int. (thanks to Kim posting a link on her blog) that I like.

fresh = new, modern, re-freshing
quirky = just a little bit different, odd – but not awkward
honest = pure form, and good materiality

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