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Design Process Blog

that I started.

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#1 ianfreeze

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Posted 08 September 2011 - 08:21 AM

I bought this book a while back. I noticed on the site it has some design problems that go along with the different chapters. Being a guy whos trying to self teach...himself.... I couldn't find many down to earth examples of the process. That could be because I don't know where to look or it could be because I didn't look hard enough. Either way, I went for option 3. Start your (my) own blog where you (I) work though the exercises on the site one at a time and attempts to write out a detailed walkthrough of each project. This way anyone following a long at home can see the good the bad and the ugly. Where I get it right and where its all wrong. I'd love any feed back you guys have, or hell any design related discussions would be great to have in the comments of the site so that anyone browsing the site in the future can learn along with me.

http://www.donewellissomuchbetter.com/

I hope you don't hate it.

#2 throb36

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Posted 08 September 2011 - 04:29 PM

This is rad. I'm in the same boat as you. Trying to teach myself design, as well.

#3 ianfreeze

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Posted 08 September 2011 - 11:09 PM

Killer, glad you're liking it man. Stay tuned, more to come.

#4 Colin@movecraft

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Posted 09 September 2011 - 07:15 PM

Looks amazingly great... Keep it up! - Don't feel pressured to write up amazing, long and insightful comments. I know how time consuming that can be... I've seen many self starters do this and after four or so posts give it up (me included) because they are trying to make something intelligent and good. Don't worry about that. Try and get through all of the exercises- Pretend you really are in a class 15 weeks long, and do one a week if you can. If you are trying to recreate the experience of design school minus the seventy grand in debt, the important thing is finishing the exercises. Students tend to the best they can with the time given, but it's always ok to try something and then move on to the next challenge. Also, design school is useful because the students work on the same challenges, and then can evaluate and compare and contrast the different solutions. Try and recreate this crit process with a friend or other designer.

c

#5 Nem

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Posted 11 September 2011 - 09:33 AM

This is so good! i am self taught too and i havent seen anything like a blog of design process yet :]

#6 the_Monkey

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 04:57 PM

If you're looking for other books to help get this process off the ground I would recommend Visual Grammar.

Posted Image


I can't believe how low its ratings are on Amazon. It's one of the few books covering gestalt design that spends more time "showing you" than "telling you". I often refer back to it when I have lost my head in complexity. It's dirt cheap too.

One thing I might suggest... trust the process.
If you're starting with the simplicity of flat solid colors maybe you should follow that through to the end of the study?
It feels like your result added textures, motion blur, vignettes, and audio to "jazz it up".
This is one of the few times you DON'T have to do that.

Of course, if you want to... that's fine too.
Good luck.

:)

-m

Edited by the_Monkey, 12 September 2011 - 04:57 PM.


#7 ianfreeze

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 08:36 PM

Thanks for the recommendation, Mike. textures et al are more a product of not wanting to get bored and hopefully when all is said and done I have some pieces for my portfolio. They were the last elements added, though. I got through the layouts/arrangements first and then added the jazz. Coming from post I relate it to locking your edit then going to color.

cheers!

#8 ianfreeze

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Posted 14 September 2011 - 10:00 PM

New Post on Rhythm and Balance:

http://www.donewelli...m/found-rhythms

cheers!

#9 Binky

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Posted 14 September 2011 - 10:59 PM

That exercise is about more than just rhythm + balance, and I think you're doing yourself a disservice by spending the time, but cheating through it. You're meant to cut through the magazine to generate images toward which you'll have no "loyalty". Basically, you'll be taking imagery with intended meaning and turning it into abstractions, so that you can then create completely new meaning when paired with texts. When you use your own images, your brain has a hard time ungluing itself from their original meanings / intentions. By generating automatically abstracted stuff, you get around this problem.

Any compositional exercise will help you practice rhythm, balance, and any other compositional technique you choose to focus on, but this project is really about creating meaning where there was none, or shifting the meaning of elements that are given to you. So don't cheat it. And read the directions a bunch of times before you head into it. The directions are well written, and you're just souring your expectations if you go and look at an example. More importantly, knowing the goal of your project is paramount in design. You can't make any progress if you don't even know what you're trying to do.

#10 ianfreeze

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Posted 14 September 2011 - 11:52 PM

A fair assessment. Though I didn't choose those pictures because I thought they went with the text I chose. I chose the photos first solely because I liked the way they looked then much later chose text. I did take the pictures, but I wasn't trying to look into the soul of humanity or anything when I took them. I just saw a scenario I thought was looked interesting, so I photographed it (thats why ill always be an amateur photographer, and Ill be the fist to tell you thats fine by me). So when I put them in the layout, the only preconceived notion I had about them was that I liked the way they looked. I'm sure if I got all Carl Jung I could find some deeper associations, but I'm not really into Jung all that much. Hell, the first pass I used those same pictures to try and tell a story about Patton. I think juxtaposing the streets of Hollywood with General Patton is a fair abstraction. Granted, I failed, but I tried going down that road.

I went into this trying to find balance. I looked at the examples because on the website the pictures right under the exercise, its actually impossible to read the directions and not see the examples. http://gdbasics.com/...hmandbalancedp2 . Comparing the square I had to the layouts in the examples I felt like I was doing something wrong, the guide they showed were fundamentally different than mine, and that bothered me. I guess I'm a stickler for odd details, or have some ultra low level OCD.

It's true that I didn't think about creating meaning at all, I only thought of the technical details. I considered this to be a success until I read this and can totally see the other side of the coin. Thanks for taking the time to read Binky, insightful as always.

#11 Binky

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Posted 15 September 2011 - 12:40 AM

A fair assessment. Though I didn't choose those pictures because I thought they went with the text I chose. I chose the photos first solely because I liked the way they looked then much later chose text.


I think this is a great endeavor, and props to you for putting the time in. I'm just saying that the less you cheat the exercises, the more you'll get out of them. Even if you don't regard the specifics of the project guidelines as important, they really are (at least in this case... it's well planned). I mean, you can justify it here, to us, but you're not really doing this for us. Trust the process. If you give yourself gold to start with, then you'll just polish it. When you're set to the task of turning SHIT to gold, you're actually creating value. Also, ramming your head up against a harder problem forces you out of your comfort zone, which is exactly where the exciting discoveries happen.

And having seen the page with the directions, I see what you mean. As a suggestion, try to cover the examples section up if you can, before you get a glimpse at it. It's not horrible to see how someone else thought about the project, but it's better to give it a go first without any preconceived notions that aren't your own. If at all possible, work off of your own unadulterated inspiration first, and THEN go take a look at someone else's attempt. You'll find that, without any outside interference, your interpretation will be quite unique from someone else's. Whereas when you start off by looking at examples, your end result will be slightly more anchored to those examples. There's a lot of power in learning by example, but there's also a lot of value in discovering/developing your own voice. You'll do best by yourself to balance the two.

Edited by Binky, 15 September 2011 - 12:42 AM.


#12 Dani-Sang

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Posted 15 September 2011 - 05:26 PM

I really loving what you are pulling off there! Keep up the good job, I even left a comment on the part of shapes you were doing. Keep it up!

Edited by Dani-Sang, 15 September 2011 - 08:51 PM.


#13 ianfreeze

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Posted 16 September 2011 - 07:36 PM

Glad you're enjoying it Dani, saw your comment. Stay tuned, I want to make it through all the work too. To start and not finish is always very sad. Hoping to avoid that particular tragedy.

#14 Dani-Sang

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Posted 16 September 2011 - 08:07 PM

Glad you're enjoying it Dani, saw your comment. Stay tuned, I want to make it through all the work too. To start and not finish is always very sad. Hoping to avoid that particular tragedy.

I'm actually catching up atm, since this could work for me too.

TIP: Try to interact more with the user. Give first the challenge, so that other people can do it and then post results instead of doing it all in one.

#15 workflo

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Posted 16 September 2011 - 10:46 PM

I think also thats a great idea to bring your Design skills to the Next Level. Another interesting Book is:

Design Essentials for the Motion Media Artist: A Practical Guide to Principles & Techniques
http://amzn.to/rmKbxv
It's easy to read and gives you a realistic overview about the field!

#16 ianfreeze

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Posted 19 September 2011 - 09:45 PM

New Post: Scale, Depth, and Motion #01

http://www.donewelli...epth-and-motion

#17 ianfreeze

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:32 PM

New Post: Ambiguous Scale.

This one uses Dani-Sangs idea from earlier to invite reader participation. The problem is laid out and a due date given. Have fun with it!

http://www.donewelli...ambiguous-scale

#18 JonnyB

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 01:34 PM

Great idea! There are a lot of people who would love to learn along with you so the format of posting the problem with a due date then following up is good. If you're having enough hits maybe you can ask others to send you their results and turn it into some kind of collaborative crit on the blog

#19 ianfreeze

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 05:33 PM

Funny you mention it, just put up a new exercise this morning.

#20 Dani-Sang

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 07:38 PM

I smell succes - really enjoying it all.




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