Sunday, July 29, 2012

Typography: the Artistic Placement of a Word!

Typography is the art and technique of arranging type in order to make language visible. The arrangement of type involves the selection of typefaces, point size, line length, leading (line spacing), adjusting the spaces between groups of letters (tracking) and adjusting the space between pairs of letters (kerning). Type design is a closely related craft, which some consider distinct and others a part of typography; most typographers do not design typefaces, and some type designers do not consider themselves typographers.[2][3] In modern times, typography has been put into motion—in film, television and online broadcasts—to add emotion to mass communication.[4]
     Typography is performed by typesetters, compositors, typographers, graphic designers, art directors, comic book artists, graffiti artists, clerical workers, and anyone else who arranges type for a product. Until the Digital Age, typography was a specialized occupation. Digitization opened up typography to new generations of visual designers and lay users, and it has been said that "typography is now something everybody does."[5]  -  Wikipedia

Leave it to wikipedia to describe it best; typography is defiantly a craft to many of us that work within the entertainment and advertising world. And whether I give it justice or not, I love the act of typography when I am designing a lot of my graphic design projects.

There are times when a few well placed words can make a bigger impact as the graphic image then that  of an actual photograph or illustration; whether it be in an advertisement, business literature or a campaign to promote a product. High end luxury car advertisements can be good explains of this technique. Over my ten years of experience within the newspaper world and independent clients, I even have a few explains of my own typography moments that I'm proud to share.

The most recent moment of typography I created instead of using a generic graphic, was when I created a place card for the safety pin baby boy charm favors we made for my sister-n-laws baby shower. We found a scrap book paper we loved for a background but it needed a little something else, and why not state the obvious, it was for "Baby Boy Chandler".

I couldn't just type "Baby Boy Chandler" in a straight line, that would be boring. So I decided that the BOY was to be the big focus in this grouping of words and used that one word as the backdrop to the baby's nick name "Baby Chandler". As the header to the favor, it was a great addition to the cute charm pin we had made.

In many advertisements, flyers, posters and other printed material, a grouping of words can make a great header when there is to be a lot of graphics used within the majority of the page, and one more graphic image at the top of the page may be just too much.

As shown here in the RV Sales ad I created, the header is a grouping of words, in different colors, sizes and placements (stacked, side-by-side etc...) to get the customers attention, but without adding one more graphic to the page and distracting from the more important elements; like the RVs for sale.

Along with advertisements; mass mailers need to make a big impression, and quickly as possible. Most people take one look at the front of a magazine, brochure, post card or flyer; and either keep it or chuck it! If the color doesn't POP and the message isn't easy and quick to read; you wasted your money.

When creating a series of post cards for my brother's real estate business, we needed to come up with ways to keep the potential clients interested and him out in front of the competition! We had started with a seasonal theme; the jumbo post card below was a great start. The colors were bright and the text was placed in a way that didn't clutter the image. By using the different textures in the picture to frame the text, I was able to artistically place the words in such a way, a layer of imagery was created to enhance the message. A Great Start to a fun series of post cards.

Well as time goes on, I hope to continue to find fun and "WOW" popping ways to use the skills of typography in all my graphic design jobs.

New Post Still to Come:
   • The Ottoman transformation
   • Birthday Invitations - printed and digital
   • Fabric, note cards and home decor; great inspirations

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A Quick Re-Purpose of Items

  vartHere's an ode to moms and wasting nothing a little kid has or can enjoy for months to come.

In the past week and most of the summer, for that matter, I have been looking at things in a new light.

As my pre-schooler was coming out of a winter full of jeans and into a summer of no shorts, I had to do something to remedy the lack of wardrobe. I noticed that she was finally fitting into the waist of her jeans but the knees had seen their last days, holy as holy can get. Well a bit of wisdom seeped into my bank of knowledge and the idea to cut above the holes and make knee length jeans emerged. Thank you creative people, within my family; waste not, want not.

Then I bought 16" diameter tissue pom poms as decorations for a baby shower. When the shower was done we couldn't decide, do we throw away or try to get them folded back up into the packaging (yeah right). As we racked our brains on what to do, BAM! the idea came to my mom; place them on the ceiling in my daughter's room as clouds and fuzzy sky like items. Since I'm renting I can't put up her real clouds and butterfly decor, for they require too many push pins, so this was a great substitute. Hang them from their string and lots of tape.

Before                                                           After 

Last but not least; a hello kitty top sheet turned curtains for my adorable niece's new room. She just turned 7 and an extra top sheet ended up within her bedding. And there lay a naked window with the need for flare. So I cut off the extra length, cut them in half vertically, to make two curtain panels, lots of hems and a little sewing to create a pocket for the pressure rod, and the cutest set of curtains were born.

Lots and lots of re-purposing! Not too many sewing projects left. Just a few interior design pieces; One more hello kitty makeover... rework the old vanity skirt with the left over material from the top sheet, such fun! And the long over due Wicker Cork Wall hanging, along with a number of Graphic Design projects on the horizon.

The Summer should end with a bang of great designs; only leading into a year of great holiday treasures and creativity!

Keep a look out for these great new post:

   • Typography and ways to use it
   • Showing off Cute Baby Shower Favors - Graphics and Jewelry
   • Birthday Invitations - Jumbo Post Card Size (part 1) Digital Invitations (part 2)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Re-purpose the Great Room

The kids needed more play room, I needed a space that arranged everything in one central location and well the clutter was getting to me. So a family day of rearranging our "great room" was in order.

Most of the clutter cleaned up before we moved stuff
We had reorganized the office alcove and the under the window space a few months back after the baby was born and crawling around. But now she is walking and getting into everything. The toys were piling up, the playpen and the office chairs were fighting for space and I was tired of all the bruises I was getting from trying to maneuver around all these obstacles.

I had dreamed up a new layout when we were contemplating buying a larger unit very similar to our rental, so the brainstorming was already in play. I made a few adjustments, sent a few unneeded items to the garage for storage and "poof" the room was rearranged! Well with lots of help from my hubby, which without his help would not have been accomplished (I had pulled a nerve in my shoulder, while sleeping, the night before so could barely move my head let alone shift furniture) So HOORAY to my husband for all his hard work!

The great thing now is that the kids have a huge open area to play in the front of the great room where there is plenty of light and very little furniture & electronics in their way.

Better yet, both my graphic world and sewing/craft world are now just a quick 180 degree rotation of my body, away from each other. I don't have to go across the room, through the desk chairs, over the pile of toys and around the couch table to get to my crafts when I need to finish a multi-median project. And even better the kids are not using my sewing table area as a play area. This great alcove/horse shoe shaped area we have created is even easier to block off and tell them OFF LIMITS!

As you can see, the sewing area is already being put to good use, displaying all the projects I want to get accomplished within the next few weeks both for the house and for my online store Jolene Marie Designs. Already the Ottoman top is almost finished being re-padded and covered, and we have laid out the measurements for simple new drapes I get to sew up for the large window wall behind the TV.

Once the ottoman is done I'll show you its quick transformation and the progress of more projects that are in the making. And don't worry, I haven't forgot the red wicker charger project, still need to get those cork pieces cut and assembled. With this new arrangement I hope to work even more on my crafts and graphics, for I am so enjoying my new area and hope it last for months to come!

PS. Thank you Pink Chalk Fabrics and your "Where I Sew" article, for it inspired me to rearrange my great room, sooner rather then later. Now I have a really cute sewing/craft area that I'm proud to show off to everyone!
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