Symbols Project

The objective of this project was to create a symbol for a chosen nuanced message. I wanted my message to have interpersonal meaning between me and my roommate, describing an apartment rule. Although loosely enforced, we both know that the cat is not allowed to roam into my room. The final three symbols depict this boundary between Comet, the cat and my room.


Midterm Self-Assessment

Graphic Design 2313 is the first class I’ve taken that has taught me how to use an Adobe program. After the first day of class, I went to the library to log some practice hours. I played with Illustrator’s tools, traced the duck jpg and watched tutorial Youtube videos to try and fill my learning curve. I felt very behind, after spending time on Illustrator for a few hours a week, I feel more confident and aware of how to use tools more efficiently. I also feel like I now know how to use Mac products at least a little faster, up until now I have mostly used Microsoft. The time I put in weekly to this class stays consistent.

Since learning how to use Illustrator takes a lot of time, I sadly think that has taken away time from creating more craftful designs. The traced images, hand drawings and non representatives all could have looked more sophisticated. I have gotten better at not being afraid to try new ideas because previously I was worried about running out of time to complete a task. I think my Final Three Symbols have looked more sophisticated than my other work. I tried very hard to meld all the components into a more cohesive and fluid design. In the future I want to create symbols whose parts connect better and look more integrated as a whole. The sophistication level of my work is a medium, I am aware of the changes I should make and need more expert hours.

A good example of how I positively responded to feedback was when you, told me to combine all the images I already made into a whole that works together to look cohesive. Before I had floating images that laid near each other but did not interact to create a new symbol. I redesigned my symbols to look less literal and and not just float near each other. My response to feedback really transformed my progress from the last couple weeks.

For my symbol’s inspiration, I picked a situation that displays an interpersonal agreement between my roommate and I. Although the basic concepts of designing something, feline, humanoid and cozy do not sound challenging, I found it to be a weird combination to express in a simple image. My components are all very different from one another and my meaning is more nuanced than other symbols, this made the project moderately challenging. The level of challenge I gave myself for the Symbol Project was at a medium rating.

Other expert experiences that have influenced this project were critiques, time management and planning. Last year the Foundation of Art and Design was the first class I had where students critiqued each other on a regular basis. Peer critiques can be awkward and scary but now after being exposed to so many, I have learned to get the most out of critiques. I do not own any Adobe software so I have to do homework on school computers. This has been very challenging for me because I do my other homework from wherever I am, and use my free time at work to make progress on my workload. Since I am tethered to the school computers and can’t find the lab hours, I have really had to practice time management skills. I have also logged expert hours planning in advance through sketching and note keeping. I have to use my computer time wisely so at work I’ll sketch and try to plan my designs before I use Illustrator. I have learned “lots of extra stuff” by participating in this class.

My social emotional development is a little frayed. I can’t study with friends because I have to work at a school computer so if I want companionship as I work I have to convince people to go to the library or a computer lab. I have said no to going out in order to work on my Symbol Project. During this project, the computer I was working on got accidently shut down when I stretched my legs and all my work from that night was lost. I was really stressed out and defeated but I tried my best to have something to at least present and then I redesigned after the critique. I have showed a lot of maturity in this class by being responsible and not giving up.

I try to add to a positive and supportive learning environment while in the classroom. I participate and have an active role in critique days. I take notes and am not a distraction to others’ learning. I make small talk to those around me and feel comfortable communicating to my peers. My feedback is honest but never hateful and I am receptive to the advice others give me. I have added a warm contribution to the class climate.

Reading 3 | Design Noun/Verb

1. Based upon the readings the word design comes with many definitions. Across all the readings what are some examples of these differences?
Paul Rand and Vilem Flusser beliefs about design overlap, in which both seem to view the purpose of deigning to be more industrial than self-serving. Clement Greenberg talks of design as having an artistic value where the creator must develop his work from inspiration. Lastly, Hal Foster’s idea of design embraces the idea that art and industry coexist. Useful machinery has an artistic quality is Foster’s eyes.
2. How does misunderstanding or rather multiple definitions of a singular word effect how we perceive design? Be sure to reference the four articles.
Words like and art and industry were used differently in every passage. The opposing boundaries that defined what design should be made me think of what I think designing should consist of and no concise definition formed in my mind.
Personal Reflection:
1. How do you suppose you could better prepare yourself as a maker of
aesthetic objects/ideas?
Repetition of practice will better prepare my artistic thinking and style. If I create a piece everyday or at least mull over a concept that I would like to apply to tangible work, then I will push my thoughts to create new aesthetic objects.
2. What are things you currently do to practice your creative muscle?
I write screenplays for short films and short plays, and am currently co-directing two short films that I’ve written. My creative muscle was used to think of the pivotal concept for each script’s plot and my creative muscle is also taxed in trying to decide which camera angles will most clearly add definition to the tone of each scene.

Reading Response #2

Mad Scientists!?

1. Based upon the reading how are priorities set for specific projects? Or in other words, what is it that determines the guidelines for given projects?

Beliefs such as politics and feelings that come from concrete situation. The main guidelines that determine an artist’s work is there intended purpose for their selected audience as well as their assertions of social and ethical norms surrounding the culture of the intended audience.

2. How does the artist/ designer approach decision making differently or do they?

An artist approaches decision making differently than a designer. A designer has to compromise their choices to make sure their appeal pleases their purpose and audience rather than solely look pretty.  An artist is free to “experiment” with how their aesthetic choices will affect how their purpose transcends to a general public. The fanciful architectural designs of Panton were, “best when he was most impractical,” which shows that an artist/designer has more freedom to experiment than a designer.

Personal Reflection:

1. How do you make decisions? Are they based upon anything substantial? Why or why not?

I make decisions based upon my schemas and how I interpret projects. The creative process starts with a vague concept, ie. feeling lost, feeling playful, and then grows as I narrow the message I want to create. The message along with my intended aesthetics usually funnel all the properties to unify and make a focus point out of a piece.

2. How do you know when something is “good” or working?

My amateur opinion believes two thought processes, concept and execution show whether the piece is “good.” If the concept is concise and speaks to me then the product is halfway to “good.” The piece is a complete success if the aesthetics and design properly translate the concept.

3. How do you rework projects to make them work?

Personally I go back to basics and simplify my message to de-clutter my thought process and then hopefully my work becomes simpler.

Foundation of Art and Design Reading 1 WTF is Design and Art

1. What is the purpose of a designer, do they always work for a stakeholder?– A Designer is the power behind the idea, he or she funds the project to bring art pieces together and must unify a vision for every piece to make the collection reconcile and come together despite combining various viewpoints. The designer manages this production of art and expression. The designer does not necessarily work for a stakeholder, although that is usually the case, instead they can function as an independent, funding the production of an artful message.
2. Is the artist always a self-expressive narcissist?– Art is the physical transformation of concepts, ideas, objects, viewpoints and emotions brought to life by an artist. The artist, like all expressionists, create their masterpiece with personal schemas influencing their craft. The creator, in this case an artist, is encouraged to use self expression to build a message, but this does not mean that all artists are narcissists. Certain artists see themselves more as the median and not the focus of their art.
3. Can the designer/artist exist?– Yes and no, I believe that an artist can be a designer but a designer should not always be an artist. Art is open to interpretations and although the creative process of designing and creating art is similar, a design usually lacks room for interpretation. Both professions can output something artful and when that happens the designer and artists coexist in one person.

  1. What is your personal view of the difference between the designer and the
    artist?– The designer needs to develop a visualization that concisely relays a clear message in order to reach a targeted audience. Artists are awarded room to have a hazy message that can touch every individual differently.
  2.  Which are you, why?– I can not answer this question with certainty because I am still discovering my creative limits. In the case of visual art I consider myself more a designer. It is more comfortable for me to hide behind the assignment given to me instead of expressing  a personal message.

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