End of year show – Display Ideas.

As we aren’t just creating a final piece and handing it in we are, in fact, showing our final pieces to the general public, it’s important I take some time and think about how I want to display my work at the final show. This is a wonderful opportunity for us, as we are able to get our name out there in the design community free of charge.

Along with printing my apron for the show, I need to print out the business cards and print the labels to go onto the bottles. As we had a problem printing the labels where they wouldn’t come out the right size, I had to make do with printing them on high-quality photo paper and sticking them on with double-sided sticky tape.

My initial layout idea for my end of year show was to have a small space next to a wall with a white wooden box roughly chest height in front of it. I would then have my apron hung from the wall behind the box, with the logo about eye level and the bottles and business cards neatly displayed on the box.

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Unfortunately, there weren’t anymore display boxes when I went to set up, as the ones that my course had been given had already been taken. Instead, I managed to get myself some table space.

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As you can see in the image below, I decided to try using a glass stand we found, with a light underneath. We placed the bottles on top of the stand and the light underneath lit up the cordials inside which looked interesting and made them stand out. We placed the apron to the left and laid the business card neatly in front, some showing the front and others the back,  so people could see both sides designs.20170623_090654

Unfortunately, as there wasn’t enough space for everyone, we had to each take up less space. What I did was simply moved my apron in front of the glass stand and moved all the business cards up next the bottles – again with some face-up and others face-down.

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Overall I liked how my exhibit was displayed, but would have obviously liked to have had my original idea of a box next to a wall to be the final display, as I feel it would have looked more professional and cleaner than what I ended up having.

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Final Evaluation

For this FMP, we got to write our proposal and choose what our project was based on. I had a few initial ideas but ran with my favourite which was to rebrand a made up drinks company which quickly changed to become a live client called ‘Cornish Country Cordials’. The rebrand originally was going to include new label designs, uniforms, business cards, website and a short film, which I quickly noticed was going to be too much to do so cut some things out – I did this to ensure I had an outcome that I was pleased with.

The experience of rebranding a company has been interesting due to having no prior experience with branding. I enjoyed have the contact with the client and discussing what we could do to move the project further, although getting my logos critiqued was interesting as she didn’t choose the logo I thought was best but obviously, I had to go with what the client wanted. This was a good experience overall as this is what it would be like when working for a real client. I do wish I had come to the decision of rebranding CCC a week or two earlier, as I feel I left the decision to late and could have done more work in the time I wasted.

My original idea was to rebrand the company in a Cornish style so I looked at existing Cornish brands, although it was suggested that I try something more challenging, rather than going with a style that is used a lot. The whole idea for my designs came from a rebrand I was told to look at called Appy Fizz, which was based on the feelings you get on your tongue when you drink them. I decided to take this idea and base my whole designs on the flavours of the cordials Cornish Country Cordials create. As I am passionate about local fruit drinks and branding I found this project incredibly fun to do which I feel has shown through in the amount of research and experiments I have created.

In this project, I have had to learn many new skills such as using watercolours, screen printing and lino printing and have improved existing skills in Adobe InDesign and Illustrator. As a lot of my previous work is digital, I wanted to try using more traditional practices as I am very good at digital art but don’t want traditional practices to not be in my skill set. For my label designs, I ended up using my digital skills to create watercolour looking images as I wasn’t able to get the desired effect I wanted with watercolours – I believe this was due to my lack of paint mixing skills. I was annoyed that I couldn’t get the watercolour designs I anticipated I would, as I feel the none digitalised versions would have been less saturated and had a more elegant look which was what I depicted at the start.

In the last project, I still didn’t feel I experimented and developed my work enough, so this time I went all out. Instead of just keeping with a couple versions of a logo, I created a whole page full of different ideas, some that would work and others that wouldn’t. Before, when I had found a design I liked I had just run with that, although this time I found that I liked the next version more than the last which kept going until I found the perfect version. A huge problem that I ran into from this was that I got too carried away experimenting, researching and creating, that the end came up too quickly which caused me to have to rush. In future projects, I will need to get into a habit of stopping at the end of every week, evaluating my what I’ve done and what I still need to do more effectively as I didn’t do this as well as I should have in this project.

In terms of other people’s views of my work, I believe the majority of people will be more likely to look at the cordials as the packaging will stand out a mile when next to other drinks bottles. My aim to give people an insight into the taste of the cordials has worked but not in the way I originally thought. I would’ve liked labels to have come out more alike the Niche Tea packaging with a more visual story rather than just colour textures – which is what I ended up with. The client really like the final outcomes and loved the whole visual flavour design idea, that I had at the start, but felt the same as me that the designs should have had more of a visual story.

In conclusion, the experience of rebranding a live client has made me realise this is what I would like to do in the future. I am really happy with the final outcome, although if I was to do it again, I would definitely have spent more time creating a visual story on the labels rather than having to end up using a photograph and digitally manipulating it. I do feel that I should have asked the client be more forward in the decision making as I feel she was thinking about what was best for me, rather than her company.

Business Cards – Development and final piece.

 To go along with the new labels and apron, I decided to create some business cards as well. Business cards were a good idea to create as they could possibly get some more business for the client when displayed at the summer show as potential clients take them away and contact the supplier at a later date.

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I wanted to design business cards that look elegant by having a minimal amount of clutter on. I wanted the logo on one side and a brief description of the company and website address on the back. I did have a look at having the business cards vertical rather than horizontal but I feel it looks silly as you don’t see many vertical business cards, so I went with the simple and traditional layout.Screen Shot 2017-06-16 at 14.57.56

My initial idea was to have the business cards very similar to labels, but as I had so many different label background designs, I wasn’t sure which to choose. I don’t know if many companies do this, but my idea was to have five different business cards all with different backgrounds, that would be shuffled together. I thought this idea was strange although I have seen illustrators and other artists business cards in this way.  I liked the idea but I felt the business cards didn’t look as good as the labels in the same style as they look odd and needed to be simpler. The one good thing about those designs was that they stood out a mile.Screen Shot 2017-06-16 at 14.50.14

A peer suggested that I put the texture inside the logo and text instead of a fill. I did this by using the create outlines tool in Illustrator for the text and a using the object – pattern tool to create the texture and then adding the texture as a fill to the logo and text. I much prefer these designs as they still contain the textures that have backed the whole brand but in a simple form.

As with the labels, I didn’t know if I was going to have any problems printing the cards, luckily everything went fine. I had thought of printing out each side of the business cards separately and then sticking them onto cereal box card but that isn’t very professional and I want my display at the final show to look good.

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I came up with the idea of arranging the business cards, as seen in the image above, with the fronts aligned to the left and the backs aligned to the right. All I had to do then was print the design on both sides of a piece of white card and I would have business cards.

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As you can see it worked well, except for the fact that the printer printed it slightly out of line, so you can see a tiny bit of the black line around the edges.

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Overall, I am very happy with the business cards as they look professional and have the watercolour design element I wanted the whole brand identity to have. To be honest, I like the way it’s turned out so much I wonder if I should have tried this kind of style for the labels as these look professional and have the elegant factor I wanted.

Screen Printing Aprons

One element I am creating for the Cornish Country Cordials rebrand is a new apron design. I was planning on either stitching or ironing my logo onto aprons but since I have already researched and experimented with screen printing, I have decided to screen print the logo onto the aprons.

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Cornish Country Cordials previous aprons were rather strange as they were a battleship grey colour and featured the old logo, which was an outline of an apple with the Cornish flag inside. They also featured the companies slogan ‘Proper Squash’ – which I haven’t used in the rebrand, as I don’t feel it suits the language of their target audience.

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My new redesign for the apron consists of a black apron with white logo in the centre of the chest. The reason why I have chosen a black and white colour scheme is that the brand itself doesn’t consist of anything that signifies that they’re crafted in Cornwall except the word Cornish on the logo.

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Back along when I created the logo, I briefly experimented with the positioning of the logo on the aprons and felt that the central position looked the best with a logo that was structured in a triangular shape. Now that I had decided on the position of the logo, I still had the problem if deciding on the size of the logo. I knew from the experiments above that I wanted the logo to not be too big and not too small, so to get the right size, I printed off a few different sizes and held them to my chest so I could see what the size would be on the aprons. The size that was just right was roughly just smaller than A5.

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Once I had the design sorted, I placed the logo at the right size on an A4 sheet in Illustrator and printed it on acetate. I then got a design technician to put my design onto a silk screen so I could start printing the following day.

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The first print I did didn’t come out like I wanted it to. Unfortunately, the print studio I was working in had run out of Super White Binder, so I had to go and buy some more. Sadly at the shop, I was given just white binder which wasn’t what I had asked for and doesn’t have as much pigment which is what I needed for printing on my aprons. We didn’t realise this until we had printed onto the first apron.20170609_154752

As you can see the logo looks more of a light blue rather than a bold white.20170609_154819

These are the two inks; the top being the white binder and the bottom being the super white binder. As it was my first time on my own doing screen printing, I didn’t have a clue that there were two types of white screen printing ink. Luckily someone had too much super white binder so managed to spare me some. Once the art technician saw the two inks, she quickly realised that I had been given the wrong one by the shop keeper.20170609_155137

So I washed off the screen and started on a new apron, although this time used the Super White Binder I had been given my another student and as you can see the outcome is superb. The logo is sharp, very readable and the white on black looks great.

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Overall, I could have possibly made the design slightly bigger, but to be honest I think it looks great the way it is. The only thing I slightly dislike is that I didn’t align the design completely in middle vertically as it is slightly off centre. I really like the white logo on black apron as it looks classy and professional.

Packaging – Producing The Product Labels.

Sally, the owner of Cornish Country Cordials, prints all her labels herself and wanted the new labels I create, to also be able to be printed by her. The labels she uses are 105mm by 70.7mm, which means you can fit 8 on an A4 page with a small bit of wasted paper at the top and bottom (as seen below).

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My initial idea is to have the label layout rather similar to the original with just the overall design being changed. At the moment I am slightly unsure about the overall composition of the labels but once I have all the elements ready, I am sure the composition will come together nicely.

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 My initial idea for the new labels was to create individual abstract watercolour designs for each flavour that would feature colours you associate with the fruits inside.

Before I actually created the watercolour experiments, I got a really nice watercolour image of Google that was free to use commercially and created a mockup of what I was planning on doing to show to Sally. She really liked the idea and how it looked but I personally loved how it looked and wanted to make my designs almost identical to the one I found. Obviously, some of the text isn’t very readable, although as it was just a first idea I left it the way it was.

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As the website only had this design and didn’t have others versions with other colours, I had a go at changing the colours myself in Adobe Photoshop. I didn’t plan to use these but decided to do them to learn something new in Photoshop.

Blood Orange

Blood Orange.

Whole lemon

Whole Lemon.

Very Berry

Very Berry.

I liked the designs above, only I really wanted to create the watercolour designs myself but found it really hard getting the style I wanted to work. The method I was using to create these designs was firstly laying down a decent amount of water evenly over the paper and then dabbing wet pigment over the water, which resulted in these nice designs as seen below – this technique is like wet in wet.

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The design below was scanned in at 600ppi rather than the 300ppi of the scan above. I did this as the quality is better and obviously I want the labels to look as good as they can.Scan 1

The reason why these designs above (for the orange & chilli cordial) looked good, was that I was able to use original colours in my watercolour set, rather than having to mix them myself. With having to mix the exact colour I wanted myself, this meant that they weren’t very bright, which resulted in weird looking watercolours that I didn’t like. (as seen in the image below)

(As seen in the image below)

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This problem I was facing was getting me rather annoyed as I wasn’t getting the result I imagined I would for the other flavours. So I decided to try and just use the design for the orange and chilli cordial that I liked and digitally change it like I did with the image that I got of the internet.

In the images below, you can see that I have digitally changed the colour which is what I did with the image I got of Google. I imagined that the designs would look rather natural, which is what you would get from creating them in real life rather than on a screen.

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Orange Experiment.

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Very Berry

I really wanted to have the whole watercolour designs created by me but unfortunately, I couldn’t get the same results from digitally changing my own scan as the results of digitally changing the free image I got of Google. As you can see in the image above, you can bearly even tell that it’s supposed to be watercolours! I am really disappointed that am not able to get the desired colours for each flavour as I wanted to have the whole design made entirely by myself.

I used these adjustment tools to change the colours of my original watercolour image to colours that are associated with the other fruit drinks. I am not 100% sure how to correctly use these tools but I experimented until I got the result that I wanted.

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As I wasn’t able to get the desired colours myself, I decided to ask a lecturer as he obviously knows more than I do and might have known another way or a workaround. Unfortunately, the only way he knew, was the way I had already been doing so he just had a go at that but like me couldn’t get the exact colours I wanted.

Due to this, he said maybe I should just use the versions I created using the image I got of Google. At first, I didn’t like that idea because I wanted the whole design to be my own, but after some thought I decided to go ahead with this idea and use the Google image version.

 

Although I liked the designs, they were too over saturated and I wanted my designs to me rather muted, healthy and natural tones whereas over saturated colours look unhealthy.

 

These versions are less saturated and I look a lot more natural which is what I wanted the designs to look like. One other thing I have changed in these versions are that I’ve used the spot healing brush and patch tool in Photoshop to make the designs for each label look slightly different. A problem that I was facing was the text on the labels not being very reading on light areas of the watercolour, I managed to solve this by using the patch tool to drag a darker area over the light area solving the problem.

 

After some more tinkering, I finally came to these designs which I like and feel are completely finished. The most noticeable change between the previous designs and these is the watercolour for the Whole Lemon Cordial. It was pointed out to me that the design looked like it was for a lemon and lime cordial – which it isn’t, so I changed the colour using the colour balance tool and experimented until I got this result which I like.

Layout

Now that I had the watercolours it was time to experiment with layout.

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I wanted to keep the layout of the labels very similar to the labels she already uses, as they are simple and display everything in a clear and functional way. The two sketches above show the initial layout idea.

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This was my first idea for the layout of my labels which has the logo at the forefront, flavour a bit smaller underneath and then extra information neatly placed around the sides. The one major problem with this design was that the same font was being used too much, which resulted in the design looking very cluttered.

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When talking to lecturers about my problem and asking their opinion on my labels already, it was suggested that I try using two different fonts in my designs – one Serif and one San Serif. It was also mentioned that I should see what the labels would look like if I decreased the size of the company logo on the front.

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Unfortunately, when I went to Sally house to pick up the labels, she only had different ones left as you had been preparing for The Royal Cornwall Show that week. As the labels were a different size, I needed to go back and recreate the labels and to the new size of 99.1mm by 67.7 which was fairly easy but annoying.

Final Labels.

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Overall I am rather pleased with the final designs. As I said already, I would have liked to of been able to have the watercolours made by myself but seeing how the labels look now, I am glad that I didn’t use the edited versions of my own watercolours. The only thing looking at all the designs digitally now that I’m still not 100% happy with is the saturation of the backgrounds. If feel this way as I still think it’s a bit too much but if it was any lower you wouldn’t be able to see the white text so I will have to leave it like this.

Lino Printing Research – Experiments.

Lino Printing is a printing technique very much like woodcut where you carve a design into the material using a sharp knife or V-shaped chisel. The carved out section of the Lino, won’t be shown on the final print as no ink will have reached the lower surface after having been rolled.

The material carved into for Lino Printing called Linoleum was invented and used as a floor covering in the late 1800s. Before Lino, artists used to carve designs into a piece of wood which was a lot more expensive than Lino, when Lino was introduced people described as the poor engravers wood.

 

How to create Lino Prints.

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First of all, you will want to draw your design out onto a sheet of Linoleum and begin to carve away the parts you don’t want to be visible in the final print.20170504_120329

Once done you should have something that looks like this. On the left Lino, I created some interesting scratch mark textures, which I would later lay over some Brusho experiments.

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Next, you need to ink ready. The ink we use for Lino Printing are called blocking inks and you will want to put a small blob of ink on your pain of glass. Then you will need to evenly roll the ink all over the face of the roller and roll it over the

Here are some of the interesting results I got from using green and black inks.

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The reason why I wanted to experiment with lino printing was that I wanted to see what it would look like to have texture over the top or underneath watercolour. Unfortunately, I didn’t think completely about what I was doing as I wanted just the textured lines above to be shown and not the background so basically, I wanted the opposite to what I got above.20170504_105354

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I quite liked these versions but they differently wouldn’t work for Cornish Country Cordial’s labels as they don’t look elegant and are in your face too much. The experiment above might work for a cordial made from fruit found in a jungle but doesn’t work for a cordial made from healthy Cornish fruit.

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20170504_110201Here is my favourite result using the textured print over the top of the Brusho. If I was to do something like this for the cordial labels, I would create a lino design opposite to what I did with patterns and shapes that are associated with the fruits.

List Of Things To Do.

  • Ask tutor about Adobe Illustrator layers messing up. DONE
  • Finish watercolour experiments. DONE
  • Create new simple logo mood board.
  • Try using wax with Brusho.
  • Finish narrowing ideas blog post.
  • Read through all blog posts and ask for help if I think it needs more work.
  • Experiment with lino. DONE
  • Bring in or get measurements of labels that Cornish Country Cordials use so I can cut paper to size and experiment with watercolour on them. DONE

I am wanting to have completed these list of things to do by next Wednesdays (10th May).