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Slide Design

For my latest project, I created a slide design in which I analyze an advertisement and create a new one that follows the same idea of the campaign. I am analyzing a pro-conservation ad from the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Slides can be used in a very effective way to present information. They should be simple and help the presenter display the information without distraction. The design should ad to the presentation of information, not take away from it. I created my slide design in Adobe InDesign and the ad redesign in Photoshop.

Design

The audience for this design and the ads is people who are concerned about the environment and the conservation of wildlife. The ad is very effective in the way that it uses negative space to create a sense of uneasiness. When we look at the two images side by side in both ads, we know that something is missing in the second image.

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My slide design is very simple. I use a main heading over a yellow bar for the slides that are analyzing the ads. In my slides that introduce the sections, I have a shorter yellow bar at the top and a longer blue bar at the bottom with the WWF logo superimposed over it at the end of the text. I follow this template consistently throughout the slide presentation.

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For my reverse engineering slides, I use simple yellow circles and rectangles to bring attention to the various ad design elements I discuss.

All the photos I use in my slides align with the yellow bar. My body text also aligns with the top and bottom of the photos.

Color

For my slide design’s color scheme, I chose a yellow (fbd310) and blue (1557a5). The yellow and blue represent the colors of natural objects, such as the sun and the sky or the ocean. This follows the theme of nature and conservation in the ads I am analyzing. They are also both primary colors and they work well together.

Typography

For my slide design, I used Minion Pro, a serif font, in 48 point size for my headings where they appear at the top and bottom of my slides. For the body text used in my ad analysis, I used a 14 point sans serif font Avenir. The use of two different typeface styles creates contrast. I chose a sans serif font for my body text because it is cleaner and easier to read. A serif font is more fitting for a heading.

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For the ad redesign, I tried to make it as close in style to the original as I could. I used a serif font, Arial bold, to achieve a similar look.

Photography

The original ad was created by the ad agency DDB for the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). It features two images, one featuring a shark fin and the other the empty ocean. For the ad recreation, I used a free stock image from pixabay.com.

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In my slide design, I have sought to analyze and redesign an ad and present this information using a very simple design that complements the theme of the ad. My slide is consistently designed with two types of slides. My use of typography and color helped to present my ideas as well.

Creative Calendar Ad

A creative ad should be engaging and motivate the audience to take a certain action. This is especially true for boring, everyday items. Even simple things can be made interesting. For my creative ad, I wanted to convey a message that was non-literal. The product that I am advertising is a calendar.

Audience

My audience is married women between the ages of 18–24 with a Bachelor’s degree and an income of $40,000 – $59,000. I wanted to communicate that calendars can be used to plan all kinds of fun adventures and vacations, and that you shouldn’t let your days go to waste.

Design

My idea for the ad design was that when you look at this calendar, you aren’t just seeing the days of each month, but you’re actually seeing the location of your next trip. I have an image of a different city or landmark for each month to denote the many possibilities. This is what you are imagining when you look at the calendar.

For my main headline, I used a sans serif font, Avenir Black. I wanted it to be bold and clean, so it’s the first text that people will notice. For the rest of the body text and the call to action, I used a serif Athelas Bold Italic font. I wanted it to stand apart from the headline and make it slightly more subtle.

I also created two different sizes for my ad; one for a magazine and one for a blog.

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Photographs

I used several photographs for my ad. My main photo is of the calendar, which I got from unsplash.com. It included several socks in the photo, which I got ride of using the clone stamp tool. The rest of my photos I got from pixabay.com. Here are the links in order of appearance in the ad.

https://pixabay.com/en/caminito-facade-buenos-aires-51625/
https://pixabay.com/en/architecture-building-city-dark-2715/
https://pixabay.com/en/egypt-sphinx-pyramid-cairo-giving-2133951/
https://pixabay.com/en/moscow-saint-basil-s-cathedral-2095985/
https://pixabay.com/en/mosque-casablanca-morocco-africa-298739/
https://pixabay.com/en/night-dubai-view-2295097/
https://pixabay.com/en/prague-charles-bridge-city-old-town-2387520/
https://pixabay.com/en/shanghai-skyline-architecture-673087/
https://pixabay.com/en/space-needle-seattle-washington-720742/
https://pixabay.com/en/sydney-opera-house-australia-363244/
https://pixabay.com/en/taj-mahal-mausoleum-agra-4378/
https://pixabay.com/en/venice-boat-ride-venezia-canal-2222511/

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Calendars can be boring, but I wanted to make them seem fun and exciting with this ad by emphasizing the adventures that one can plan with them. By focusing on what a calendar can be used for that isn’t boring, I am trying to motivate my audience to go out and buy calendars. The use of images and text is important in creating a message that can get to the audience and convey something non-literal. A non-literal message will get the audience to think and understand why they might want the product being advertised.

Mate Icon Set

Icons are small images used to represent an idea or a concept. I made my icon set using the Adobe Illustrator program. It features objects related to mate, a traditional beverage from Argentina. I created a mate, a bombilla, a thermos and a case to carry a yerba mate set.

Audience

My icon set symbolizes a huge part of the culture of Argentina, which is drinking yerba mate. I am looking to share that culture through these icons that symbolize a mate set.

My message is geared to anyone who is from Argentina or knows and appreciates the culture of Argentina. Having lived there myself for nearly two years, I grew to appreciate its culture and I enjoy drinking mate myself on occasion.

Design

I made my icons using a combination of shapes and the shape builder tool to combine them. I wanted to keep it very simple. I added only as much detail as I needed to make sure anyone who was familiar with what the icons represent would understand what they were. For every icon except for the bombilla, for which I used silver, I used a consistent brown color scheme. To create repetition in my icons, I used a white, red and black design that is typical of a design you might find on traditional Argentine clothing and accessories associated with gaucho culture.

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With this mate I used three simple shapes; two rounded rectangles and a circle, in addition to the pattern in the middle. I used the shape builder tool to crop the circle into the current shape.

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For the filter at the bottom I used the ellipse tool and made the holes with small circles. The rest of the bombilla was made using the pen tool to construct the curves. Finally, I added a gold ornament with the pattern in the middle.

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I used a rounded rectangle, a rectangle, a trapezoid and a circle for this thermos. I also used the shape builder tool and the pen tool to create it.

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For this case I used two rounded rectangles for the body and the top. I also used the circle shape for the buttons and a thin black rounded rectangle to show that the top and the body were separate pieces.

Color

I chose earthy, brown colors for my icons because these colors are normally used with mates and objects associated with them. I got the dark brown color (540f0e) by using the eyedropper tool on a picture of a mate. I inserted some warmer colors into the design as well, including red with the black and white pattern that appears consistently on each icon and a shade of gold (d0dd28) for the ornament on the bombilla (straw).

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When designing an icon, it’s important to take into account that you are trying to convey a message as simply and effectively as possible. I tried to make my icons very simple and easy to understand. I used consistent colors and created repetition by using the same pattern to indicate that each icon was apart of a larger set. Everything is related and helps to communicate a single message.

Magazine Spread

Design principles are important to keep in mind when creating a magazine spread. Typography and color, as well as proximity, alignment, repetition and contrast, are all important to consider for a magazine layout. I created a magazine spread with an article from LDS.org using these design principles in the Adobe InDesign program.

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Audience

My audience for this project is Brigham Young University Idaho (BYU-I) students of all ages and anyone considering attending BYU-I. Since the article is about a speech given to BYU-I students by an LDS religious leader, I am seeking to inform them and present the text in a clear and engaging manner.

Design

My design is three pages, two of which are a spread. The page size is 8.375” x 10.875” and includes a two column layout.

For the article title, I used Georgia, a serif typeface. For my body text, I used Myanmar Sangam MN, a sans serif typeface. I wanted to use a sans serif typeface for the body because it is simple and easy to read. In order to create contrast, I chose a serif typeface for my headline.

In my color scheme, I used two complementary colors; a light blue (15FFF2) and a brownish red (B23D00). I used the light blue much more abundantly in my design, especially for the spread pages. I chose the brownish red for my text and my pull quote because, as a warm color, it stands out and I found it to be more appropriate for this purpose.

Throughout the article, I placed three bolded headlines separating different sections of the text. I inserted one pull quote inside a text box and used the text wrap feature to wrap the text around the quote.

Images

I took the two photos I that used in my spread. The top photo is a picture of the outside of the I-Center, where the event was held and the bottom is a picture of the Rexburg Idaho Temple, operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

 

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The main design elements I used in my magazine spread are typography, color and contrast. I used a cool and warm color to create contrast, as well as different typeface families for my text. The text wrap feature is great for inserting pull quotes into an article. I aligned my images with my text and organized the article into two separate columns per page.

Photography Rules and Techniques

Photographers use a number of rules and techniques to make photographs visually appealing. This week, I will look at three basic photographic techniques: the rule of thirds, leading lines and depth of field. I will begin each technique with an example I have found and then show a photograph of my own that also demonstrates the technique.

Rule of Thirds

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This is a photograph by Rebecca Cooper that I found on her blog, Simple as That.

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Imagine every photo is divided by four lines, two vertical and two horizontal, into 9 equal parts. The main subject of your photo should fall on one of these lines, especially where two of them intersect. As we can see in this photo, the girl is positioned right along the right vertical line. Her head and her leg are right at the points where the vertical and horizontal lines intersect. This makes for a very balanced, visually appealing photo.

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This is a photo I took at the gardens of Brigham Young University-Idaho (BYUI).

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The subject of my photo is the statue. I tried to position it right the best I could along the invisible line according to the rule of thirds. The main points, the head and the pedestal, roughly aline with the vertical line on the right. The positioning makes the image much more visually appealing than if I were to have centered the statue in the photo.

Leading Lines

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This photo of the London Underground was taken by Josh Dunlop, one of the editors of ExpertPhotography.com.

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Leading lines draw our attention to an object or location. They can take our eyes from one point to another. This photograph has a lot of leading lines. The people in the photo are traveling up the escalator. The lines, as shown in my draw over, follow the people up to the next level. There is a wide angle lens that makes it seem like the viewer is in the picture, going up with everyone else. The leading lines do even more to create this impression.

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This is a path at the entrance of the BYUI gardens.

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The lines of the pathway draw your eyes from the bottom and up the path. Leading lines essentially tell our eyes where to go. The lines in this photo are telling out eyes to follow the path. This also give the impression that we’re in the frame going up the path.

Depth of Field

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This is a photograph taken by Alexander J. E. Bradley, found here on a blog post he wrote.

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The way our eyes see naturally creates depth. Photographs, however, are two dimensional images. In order to create the impression of distance between objects, we use the principle of depth of field. One way to do this, as demonstrated in the photo of the worn book hanging from the tree, is to focus on one object, obscuring the scene in the foreground. When you look at this photo, you can tell that the book circled in red is closer than the other books, which are blurrier.

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I took this photo of a rock on a bench at the BYUI gardens.

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Since I shot these photos on an iPhone, I tapped the screen in order to focus on the object I wanted. The rock on the bench here is my subject. The camera lens is focused on the rock. Everything else recedes into the background. The trees and the bushes are blurrier, because they aren’t the important elements of the photo. This creates a sense of distance as well. We know the rock is the closest object in the photo. Everything else is separate.

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If you want your photos to look better, try to follow the rule of thirds, the principle of leading lines and aim to create a stronger depth of field. I’ve only discussed three of the techniques photographers use to make their photos more visually appealing. There are many more techniques and plenty of room to break them if you know what you are doing.

Typography in Ads

This week I will be looking at an advertisement for the movie The Big Short (2015), directed by Adam McKay and starring Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt. I will be focusing on the typography and the different categories of typefaces the poster uses. The ad uses two different typeface categories. I will explain what these are and how it contributes to the overall design.

Typeface 1

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The first typeface used is a modern typeface, shown on the right of the page. We know this for a number of reasons. First, there is a vertical stress in the characters. The clearest evidence of this is in the ‘O’, where I have drawn a line down the middle, noting the vertical stress. The second clue that reveals what kind of typeface this uses is the serifs. We know that both oldstyle and modern typefaces use serifs, but these particular serifs are horizontal. There does seem to be a moderate thick/thin transition which is more indicative of an oldstyle typeface, however, and while the serifs are horizontal, there is bracketing, or a curve where the serif meets the stem.

Typeface 2

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The second is a sans serif typeface, seen on the left. It is a very plain and simple design. There is no thick/thin transition in the typeface and, as the name sans serif suggests, there are no serifs hanging off the characters. Because there is no thick/thin transition, there is no stress. Every stroke of each letter has an equal thickness.

Contrast

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Of course, the biggest difference between the two typefaces is the use of serifs, or the lack thereof. The second most notable difference is the variation of thickness throughout the characters. The starkest example I see is the two capital ‘S’ characters. You can clearly see the differences in thickness, use of serifs and therefore the lack of bracketing.

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The tagline is written in a sans serif typeface that gives it a very simple, easy to read look. Because it is slanted diagonally, the legibility is more important, so this is a better typeface category to use. The title and the actors’ names are written in a modern typeface with at least an element of an oldstyle typeface as well. This gives it a more elegant look that is probably more appropriate for the information.