Negotiated Major Project, Illustration: Evaluation

For the last project of my Graphic Design degree I knew I wanted to create a Cinema brand concept combined with an Art Deco aesthetic, because I have always enjoyed going to the cinema and thought it would be interesting to design my own. Especially in an Art Deco style because I think they work well together combining their known associations and aesthetics.

I knew from the start that I would need to create wide range of works and concepts to put across the idea that this could be a real working cinema. Ranging from exteriors, interiors, staff uniforms, products that would be sold, and a small scale model of how it would look in 3D. 

I decided to keep most of the Illustrations as Adobe Illustrator Vectors because I thought they give a professional looking layout and is clearer to see the details with a plain black and white image. They are also great for keeping their resolution when changing the perspective of the image on Adobe Photoshop to show how the space would look in 3D. 

To help contextualise and round up the project I thought I would create a short narrative to give an interesting extra element to my NMP. I really enjoyed creating this part of the project because I like creating stories and I liked making the pages of the letters look aged and textured as If they are artefacts from the 1930’s. Then creating a time capsule box along with the 3D foam board model and framed poster to create a real life collection of items re-discovered from the 30’s. 

I overall really enjoyed my project and I am happy with its final pieces. Usually a project of this length I tend to run out of steam and usually end up disslinking my chosen subject matter. But since I have found a genuine like of the Art Deco design style and I think two and a half A3 folders full of work and my final outcomes are testament to this.

If I were to another project on this scale again I would probably focus on a smaller selection of works so they can be fully developed and further refined.

Still another reason for me do this project was to best portray some of my design and illustration skills. Most of my work doesn’t really have a distinctive style that someone would associate with my work. So I thought a project like this where (as part of my narrative) is being created by a fictional design company with several department (i.e. me). Their work would have different styles but with a coherent overall vision. So using this I could create a range of work In my usual style (in no particular style) to portray my flexibility as a designer (as if the work has been created by several people) and I think I have achieved this for my final project…

…So with the letters, model and final cinema designs I’ve decided to wrap it all up as a time capsule discovered from 1933.

All 10 of my final pieces have been attached onto mount board and placed inside a cardboard box along with the letters, documents and photographs (previous post) and will be sealed (as part of the narrative) along with the foam board model and framed poster advertisement to create a time capsule. As if they’ve been sealed away since 1933 and re-discovered toady. 

I obviously took some liberties with materials that would have been available in the 30’s (foam board, vector illustrations etc.) But this is my own concept in an ‘altered’ time line which I think is still slightly plausible. Especially since this idea was not the plan from the beginning I just thought it would be an interesting way of collecting my work and contextualising it in an interesting and unique way.  

I like the idea of someone opening the capsule box and seeing these ‘ancient’ documents, piecing together a story, discovering what the project was and to see some of the work made for it…

Here is another one of my final pieces. 

I decided to create a model of part of my cinema to show how it looks in 3D and act as part of a fictional Architecture part of my narrative.

The majority of It was simple enough to cut out since I had my floor plan which is the same size (A3). I followed the measurements, slightly altering them as I needed to which resulted in what I think is a clean and professional looking model.

The only thing which I was not too happy about was the lettering on the front. Most of it was fine to cut out by following a print out of the typeface, but it was the rounded letters like ‘O’ ‘D’ and ‘R’ which caused the main problems. (Foam board doesn’t like rounded edges) If I were to make It again I would probably try to use the laser cutter to get a precise shape.

I am happy overall because I have not made anything to this scale out of foam board before and I think its good for a first try. I especially like the tiny screen seats I made (Image 3) they took quite a while to cut out, but they gave great results…

Art Deco Cinema NMP Narrative Concept.

So a while ago near the beginning of this project I was asked if there was going to be a story behind my cinema. I initially said no because I didn’t think it really needed one but then I got thinking. I designed the ‘Deco Doherty Design Co.’ logo (Image 9) long before any concepts for the cinema or products. I used it as a fictional design company (previous post) behind the designs for the golden reel and nothing more. But when I was asked if there was going to be a story or not, something must have triggered subconsciously for me to form a story out of the simple initial logo idea. 

So from the letters here that I have created to look worn and aged using the classic tea stained effect with a few rips and tears here and there for good measure. You are able to piece together a short narrative surrounding this company as It’s C.E.O gets a large project from a new client, to its downfall and eventual close. (I am aware there are a few spelling mistakes, which I am fixing). 

Creating these letters also allowed me a unique way of writing my own NMP project brief (which Is one of the requirements). Especially in the memo (Image 4 & 5) where it mentions to get the required items ready for the meeting (i.e. the deadline) and lists what each department (i.e. me!) is doing and what needs to be done. 

I used a type to make it look like it has been typed on a typewriter as well as other specific details to give each letter character/back story.

The letters form ‘Deco Doherty’ are on an off-white paper and the ones form ‘Phoenix’ are on a clean white paper to distinguish between them. The memo pages (Images 4 & 5) have holes in each corner to suggest they have been placed on a notice board. The first two pages (Image 1 & 2) from ‘Phoenix’ have circles from the bottom of a cup which to me portrays contemplation on whether or not they should accept the project. The last two pages (Images 6 & 7) have been folded into four, showing that they would have been letters sent out to all employees in envelopes. 

I also created the floor plan for the cinema way before I started any actual design work which was on purpose. Since I needed to see where everything should be and if there would be enough space for everything I wanted to include.

So as you can read from the last letters the final two projects get sealed away until they can find more money to support their business which is where my project comes in…

To round of the product design part of my NMP I thought I would create a small A3 poster advertisement for ‘Glacier Girl Ice Cream Co.’

Sticking to the vintage theme with the layout and typography. I used a limited colour palette of shades of blue with black and white to echo the colours I used for the logo.

I also managed to find a nice Art Deco looking dusted gold frame to put It in. To create a real-life item that could be put up in my cinema during the 30’s… 

These are the final two exclusive products I created for cinema.

I don’t feel they are as strong as ‘Glacier Girl’ but they do have their own distance concepts.

So for the pop corn brand I thought of many ideas but none of them were working. So i eventually thought of the tagline ‘Tailored to your liking!’ which was a reference to the choice of pop corn you can get (salty or sweet) which is up to the customer. Which then lead to ‘Pinstripe Pop Corn’ because of the word ‘tailored’. I thought of suits and smart clothing and pattern types which fed into the bag design itself (image 2) having the broken up lines. I think it is and effective take on the classic red and white ‘circus’ pop corn/peanut bags. Yet if I did it again I would make the pinstripe pattern slightly more defined.

As for the drinks company/cup design, I thought around words associated with water since its a key ingredient in most soft drinks. Then I though around fishing and sea creatures which is where ‘Hook, Line & Sinker’ the known phrase came from. They are also tools used in fishing, which I thought would be interesting to illustrate. However the more I stuck to the fishing idea the more it ended up looking a bit too close to something you would find on a tin of tuna. So I altered the logo slightly to make it look neon to fit in with the Deco theme. Then I chose drink names based on a pirate theme, still loosely sticking to the water idea. Which is where ‘Land Lovers Lemonade’ and ‘Ahoy! Appleade’ originates.

Although I do like my final concepts (Image 2) and (Image 6) I do feel that the can be developed and experiment further with logo ideas like I did for ‘Glacier Girl’…

Okay so on to the product design side of my NMP.

I was unsure about adding this element of my NMP because It is not something I favour or is something that I am particularly good at but I was pleasantly surprised… 

These are the designs for my ice cream company/product that would be sold exclusively at the cinema.

I came up with the name ‘Glacier Girl’ because I was thinking about words that have something to do with the cold which then turned into things like ice, snow or frost. I also wanted it to have the element of alliteration which is a feature of the time and is quite tongue-in-cheek and doesn’t take itself too seriously.

The image itself was developed from an image I found whilst searching for 30’s hairstyles. I then created a loose vector from the image so I then could hand trace the lines to change certain details to make it my own image. which I then scanned back in and re-illustrated so I could keep the resolution regardless of its size. 

I definitely think this is one of my favourite and strongest pieces that I have recently created. Its the closest I have ever gotten with an idea to being exactly how I envisioned it looking, from sketch to final product…