Damn it. I’ve fallen behind. I don’t know if this warrants an excuse for my lateness but I have been designing things for other people and other events, cousin’s birthday invitations and brochures for the facilities commission.
Now onto the lesson. In hierarchy, there is rank, rank of what’s important, who is important, what areas are important. Hierarchy is in our day to day lives. Our family, our education, the transportation systems we use, the things we buy, all are hierarchical. So basically what I learned:
hierarchy: order of importance within a social group or in a body of text; is expressed through naming systems(so basically, by being named we are in a system of ~)
A designer’s approach to hierarchy shows his/her style. I’m gonna look back to my past works and see how my style has evolved, how it’s improved, how it hasn’t improved. If you ever use a phone, a laptop, you’re looking at a designer’s/multiple designer’s works as you scan through the icons and different interfaces.
Apologies for the lateness. I’ll have to continue to catch up asap! Or else I’m screwed, so much for working on my commitment to things. =/. But I guess prioritization=hierarchical thinking. So hey, just keeping it relevant.
(Also a day late: I think i’m going to divide Design Problems into lessons. Or should I count them as homework? Help me out here, I’m indecisive.)
Look around, your vision frames the world around you. Look out a window, and you will see a framed scene, the city street, or the country fields. Here’s what I learned:
framing: it’s everywhere, cropping, borders, margins, and captions are key to graphic designers
margins: protect an image or piece of text, draws our attention to it, or with smaller ~ can make objects seem larger than life; can be used for page numbers or running heads
bleed: images that run off edges of a the page; can bleed off more than one edge; makes an image more active
image and text: text-less images are open to interpretation; power in words; control of the meaning lies in the use of words; combining text and image begins the start of legibility issues; designers use boxes, bars, transparency, etc., to combat legibility issues
I started taking some shots with my sister’s Nikon. It’s one of those SLR/DSLRs?, forgive me, for I don’t have very much knowledge of cameras. But ever since I read Joanne’s post on her photography exhibition, I don’t want to look at photography as just another thing people do. I feel like it’s very important to the design process for interior designers, graphic designers, and photographers.
I’m glad I get to put my eyes to work in the deign process everyday when I look around me. If you’re reading this through a screen, take a look around, what’s framing this text? this webpage? and the screen you’re looking at?
Understand that we live by some margins in life, but so what if sometimes you break free of those margins. I do my best to bleed off he page by just being me. And that means a lot of things. Haha.
**Forgive me it’s a day late, for I was at Balch Park camping with my siblings and my family. =) I love the outdoors.**
But now for the lesson on day 6. Another complex topic. Well at least the stuff that I’m reading is more complex than I thought it would be. In a way this is relevant education to me. They may not be classes I’ve registered for, but the best kind of education, and the best things in life are usually free…if you know what I mean…
Today was figure slash ground. Here’s what I learned:
figure/ground: is basically a relationship that shapes visual perception
figure: is the form, always seen in relation to the ground(it’s all relative)
ground/background: the surroundings of the form
Examples given include: letters to a page, building to its site, a subject of a photo to it’s surrounding. A real-life example would be: self as the figure, and the community as its background. Unfortunately many people see the background as relatively unimportant to the subject/figure, but designers, whether that be good or bad, have been able to make those spaces more active, in a way, eliminating the background (which makes sense to me because that would mean the whole design is important) in Filipino/Tagalog, it’s known as kapwa.
Designers are able to make use of the relationship between figure and ground (also form and counterform; also positive and negative space), finding a balance, which results in an “energy” in their designs. This energy is stimulating to the eyes, perfect right?
"In the design of logotypes and symbols, the distillation of complex meaning into simplified but significant form thrives on the taut reciprocity of figure and ground."
-Graphic Design: The New Basics
One of the more intriguing things I read was "see if the edges frame a void that is equally appealing." A void that is appealing, speaks so loudly to me. I’ve always attributed voids to negativity, but now that I think of it, voids can truly be appealing. It’s all a matter of relativity and perspective.
The power to create and destroy form: the different forms.
stable: this relationship is ‘obvious,’ the form/figure stands clearly apart from its background
reversible: when the positive and negative attract attention equally, and alternately; we can switch back and forth between
ambiguous: it says it all; these challenge the viewers to find a local point; makes the eye wander: careful though, it might be distracting
Figure and ground: be the ground to my figure, I’ll be the positive to your negative, form your counterform, if you let me. Allow our relationship to be stable, reversible, ambiguous when we want it to be.
Finally! A lesson on color. Even before I begin the lesson, I just want to say that I’m super excited about this lesson, I’ve never really learned about color aside from the basics in elementary school, primary colors, Roy G. Biv in Science, the prism, rainbows. I’ve always been fascinated by rainbows (figures =P), just the color in them in general, but interestingly enough I have slight color-blindness. I’ve been told that I can’t tell between blue and purple, but those instances were only because the object whose color was in question was borderline blue and purple.
Now onto the lesson…
"This wasn’t the way it was supposed to be." "Welcome to…life."
-Cause I Said So
CMYK and RGB: just an image, but ahhh! so exciting!
Design and color, have just recently fused together. Great quote!
“Color exists, literally, in the eye of the beholder.”
-Graphic Design: The New Basics
This lesson was rather scientific, reminiscent of physiology and biology, maybe even some kindergarten stuff, except this, by far, is one of the more difficult topics. Okay so, I’m gonna try to regurgitate what I’ve learned:
is unique to one’s perception of it;
has become integral to the design process as color-printing and media have become more accessible, more routine;
an infinite range of hues and intenisities;
displays are usually in in RGB while printing is done in CMYK(I should probably start saving files in CMYK format for when I go to print);
color comes form light which is received by cones in our eyes;
color is relative, dependent on physical pigmentation as well as ambient lighting;
the primary colors are red, green, and blue: are additive because they make up all the hues in the spectrum. based on this theory, red and green paint should combine to make yellow, but when executed, combine to make a brownish color
pigment-based color systems are considered subtractive because when multiple pigments come together, the reflect less light than they absorb;
RGB is addictive, says the lesson. Hahaha, addictive gives a bad connotation. When I think of addicts, I usually think of drugs, substances, -aholics and such. Maybe design and color is addictive, bad for me sometimes because it takes away from my time when I have to do other things like study and such. I need to start changing it up more often because looking at a screen all day isn’t that great for the eyes. =P
FUNdamentals and things:
The Color Wheel
Primary Colors: Red, Yellow, Blue
Secondary Colors: Green, Purple, Orange
Tertiary Colors: made from one primary and one secondary color
Complements: colors that lay opposite one another on the color wheel; near opposites
Analagous Colors: have minimal chromatic differences
Hue: place of the color within the color wheel
Intensity (Luminence, Brightness, Lightness, or Tone): brightness or dullness of a color
Value: the light or dark character of the color
Shade: addition of black
Tint: addition of white
Saturation (Chroma): nearness to gray
Dang, there are Design Problems to these lessons, maybe I should start doing them. Maybe I’ll just start right now. I’ll return to the other Design Problems in backward order. Yeah that’s what I’ll do.
This one I’m gonna have to focus on for a while…won’t stop ‘til I get through every single color, every last one. =)
I need to stop using web safe only colors on Adobe. =/
Forgive me, this comes a bit late, but nonetheless, it counts for Day 4. I got caught up in messing around with Adobe After Effects, <3. I finished my first video, thanks togreyscalegorilla. I might post it later but first!!! What I learned today:
A texture: can be physical or virtual, can be felt, can be seen, different textures reflect different amounts of light, can be manipulated, can be captured, can be created, can be destroyed.
Basically, texture can be anything:
"Texture has a genuine, visceral, wholly seductive capacity to reel us in and hold us."
-Graphic Design : The New Basics
Texture is also relative, can be created using points, lines, and planes of differing ~. Haha. I was reading through the lesson and found that each person, each being, is really just a texture. Put one texture next to another and you’ll see the differences, the similarities. So take this as you will, but create your own texture. Let it be different from the people around you. Look at other textures, see what you like, see what you don’t like.
Hopefully, if you haven’t already, you’ll know what textures work for you and which ones don’t. Maybe one day you’ll find a texture that’s perfect for you and then you’ll find one that when you’re next to it, makes you feel all jittery inside, one that’ll send the chills up and down your spine.
Some textures in life, you probably won’t be able to handle. I know that for sure. And some textures, you can’t live without; in a way, you might just need them. You might just find yourself making friends with the texture you need. Oh wait, that didn’t match up. =P Or maybe it did.
Oh how ironic, yet so fitting. To begin this one, I wanna preface the post by saying that words and their meanings can have so much impact on the things we say, regardless of whether we intend them to or not. So scale can mean something we weigh ourselves on for to yeah…that stuff, tracking weight and such. Go insanity! Scale, like on a fish, can be a nuisance if you happen to find it in a meal (*sidenote: camping this weekend=fish…yum).
But on to what this is really about, scale in design. What I learned today:
scale: it is relative, something bigger means something smaller, it’s all relative
Sounds pretty general right? Yeah I find that interesting for myself, because relativity is something I’ve been told to stray away from when looking at self, to stop comparing myself with others, to stop comparing what I have and what I don’t have. But maybe it’s not such a bad thing to do so, maybe it just comes naturally as a designer? Maybe? I like to be pessimistic. So when I say I feel fat, it’s because relative to slimmer people, I’m fat. But if I look at my body weight relative to bigger people, I am actually pretty skinny.
During my second year of college, I found that community was a running trend among many groups of individuals. When I think about it, a design is like a community, where each element is part of the whole each relative to each and every other. So what’s wrong with comparing yourself to someone else? Just saying. That wasn’t well developed compared to what I had in mind.
When I apply this lesson to the first diagram I did on day 1, I can see that the scale of design as a circle and then of design as a dot is all a matter of relativity. The circle is scaled larger compared to the dot, and the dot is scaled smaller than the circle.
So basically, design is in a realm of expression all its own. It’s neither black or white, night or day, science or art. In design, (haha, no pun intended), designers seek rhythm and balance.
What I learned:
rhthym: regular, repeated pattern, like in books, or in magazines and such, to keep consistency, make it easier for the audience
balance: enough said, balance between light and dark, small and large, essential for design, so basically too much of something isn’t a good things
These concepts work for so much more than just design. The beating of the heart, the phases of the moon and the sun in the sky, the days, months, years, a wedding ceremony(special shout out to Vicky Manuel =]). I was talking to Marie the other day on the bus about anxiety I get in situations where people have a risk of getting hurt. Marie told me that the body is designed to protect the brain. Design in the human body, in nature, in interiors, exteriors, the way we speak, the way we move about in the world.
Even in insanity workouts, and yoga videos, rhythm and balance play a huge part in getting the correct form and posture.
Basically, if you don’t find rhythm and balance in design, you’re better off doing something else. Ya dig? So brings me to my question of the day
Who’s to say what balance is and/or what rhythm is/are?
From what I’ve read, design is very subjective, which means only one thing, it’s in the mind of the designer to determine what balance and rhythm mean, what they look like, what they feel like, how to achieve them…as with anything and everything.
“All men are designers. All that we do, almost all the time, is design, for design is basic to all human activity. The planning and patterning of any act toward a desired, foreseeable end constitutes the design process…”—Victor Papanek | Design for the Real World
There are 365 days in a year, and even more than that is the number of thoughts that run through my mind.
My name is Joseph Aaron Racca, Jr. I am 20 years old, an undergraduate at UCLA working towards my bachelor’s in anthropology. Since my life in LA has changed me a lot over these past two years in college, I consider myself a SoCal boy. There’s not too much in that name, no complexities, and I highly advise others not to generalize or assume anything in that ‘label.’
Okay, let’s face it, I’m not the best writer, not the most well-versed in academia, or vocabulary for that matter. I do, however, have a tendency to sing, create, design.
But for now, through this blog, I will be focusing more on the design aspect of my life. I recently watched Julie and Julia. She committed to doing a blog every day for a whole year. And so I want to work on my commitment to things in my life, whether that be following through with this daily blog, or even the bigger things in life, applications, deadlines, etc.
This will be the beginning of a journey to learning design, tips, and tricks behind the thing that I really do enjoy love doing the most, if anything. Day by day, I’ll do a lesson on the internet, through books, tutorials, and every week I’ll have designed something, implementing the techniques I’ve learned in my daily lessons.
This is going to be a tough one for me. Will I be able to follow through? I guess I’ll have to wait and see.