Hi, my name is Greg and I'm a Digital Media Designer studying at the University of Winchester and am currently in my second year. Other than doing projects for my uni work I'm interested in graphic design using Adobe Photoshop, Web and App UI/UX Design and have recently become interested in sketching tattoos and importing them to Photoshop to digitalise.
Out of several different options, I decided to focus on the 'Mind your money' brief from the RSA Student Design Awards. Design a way for people to improve their nancial capability and manage their money better. By the end of the project I had to hand in 1 A3 Hero Image with a one sentence description, 1 A3 Big idea summary, 4 A3 boards outlining my proposal and 10 A3 pages of supporting material.
Being a student I understand that keeping on top of my finances particularly important. So I decided to design a mobile banking app, with added features that no other banking app had. 'Student Safe' is a banking app which is linked to the users normal bank account, and gives the user tools to help them manage their money better. Such as a budgeting tool which allows the user to set themselves a specific budget for a set amount of time (day/week/month) and prevents the user spending more money than the amount permitted.
My role in the cohorts transmedia project was to create designs for the game app that we would be creating, working closely with the game developer and character designer to create a well thought out product.
The transmedia design team changed their designs half way through the semester so we had to alter some designs ourselves.
The interface designs were designed by me and the characters were designed by Seb. Whilst both working with Ben we managed to make each page work within the app and if any changes in design were needed, we would alter them so the coding was easier for Ben. There were a few problems when Ben was coding the game so we changed the instruction screen from being tap left or right to just tapping to jump. There was also an issue with the broken platforms however the game was quite difficult as it was so the platforms weren't really needed.
For this projecct myself and another student on my course, Declan, were challenged with the task of re-designing the web app on the talking walls website, as it was at least 10 years old, and because it was written in flash, it is no longer compatible with apple and mobile devices. We had to re-design the idea and think of a way we could make the information still enjoyable to read without using the web app.
We began by trying researching different possible methods of creating this big flash web app with a more modern feel, as designers we could think of lots of ideas, but struggled to come up with an idea that we could complete within the twelve given weeks of the semester.
We were given the colour palette and fonts by a student who had already begun the project.
To begin with we were going to make a website so I drew some wireframes for the website. We decided later on that because the industry has become more advanced, we should make an app version as well.
For this project I was tasked with producing a 2D or 3D walk cycle, this included building a character and animating it using Adobe After Effects. I decided to go with 2D as it interested me more and I felt there was more inspiration out there for 2D cartoons.
When coming up with an idea for my character, I wanted to create something similar to the style of Bojack Horseman, The Big Lez show and other similar cartoons that I enjoy watching. The main inspiration for my character was The Big Lez Show, as it's a funny cartoon series on YouTube and the style of the characters is simple, the creators designed and animated the characters using paint so I went with the style of being designed roughly, adding rough edges to the design to make it look similar to the big lez show characters.
I began by drawing up ideas of what I wanted my character to look like, I knew from the start I wanted it to be a young man, around the age of 20, with a bit of a belly and was originally going to put stains on his undersized t-shirt, holding a beer and a betting slip, to make him look like a messy student. I then created a simple 3 step walk cycle to give myself an impression of how my character would move.
I decided upon the character I liked most and then created a scale perspective drawing, front, side and back. I found it difficult to draw all three exactly the same size however I didn't need these in my animation.
I took a picture of my drawing with the Adobe Capture app which allowed me to open the image up on Photoshop where the outline was already created. I went over the lines to make them more obvious and added colour to the designs. I then moved the image across to Illustrator where I split the character up into his different limbs as this was the best way to start animation in After Effects. I transferred the images to Illutrator first as .ai files quality doesnt diminish, meaning I can create a walk cycle with a non-pixelated character.
This is the final animation I created in After Effects using the Duik plug-in. After completing the animation I was unhappy with one or two things, the first being the characters left sock, for some reason the sock layer put itself infront of the trouser layer importing the character and I never managed to fix it due to shortness of time as I would have to re-create the animation from the start. The second problem was that the background moves at the same time as the character which doesn't add as much depth to the animation as I had intended, if I was to go back I would just create a long background and make the animation last longer in stead of putting it on a loop, as with the current animation, it is on a loop so having the background moving slower would mean it keeps resetting the background which makes the animation look worse.
To plan and implement my own social media campaign to promote my personal website and social media accounts. And to gain as many followers and likes as possible throughout the campaign. Setting myself goals and trying to achieve them.
As I will be leaving university soon I thought it would be essential to have an online presence. As a designer I believe you should have several talents within the area. I love to draw and I love to design so I wanted to promote that, by posting regular sketches and digital design work.
Keeping a consistent brand within a campaign is important as it looks more professional. So within my campaign I kept to the same style throughout, my logo, fonts and colour palette. When uploading sketches that I had drawn, I tried to edit them in a similar style to one another, with the focus set on the drawing and fading to black.
The target audience for my campaign is future employees or possible clients, I am interested in Web and App design as well as tattoo sketching and developing the sketches into digital designs.
One of my aims was to reach 100 followers in 4 weeks, by 4 weeks I had over 100 followers and after 6 weeks I was just over 200.
Another one of my objectives was to post at least twice a week, which I had done, posting 3 times most weeks, towards the end I reduced the posting as I became more busy however I kept a strong presence as I was liking other peoples posts, following more people and replied to messages I had been sent.
One more objective I set myself was to re-post designs I had seen and appreciated, I didn't complete this goal as I felt I would rather promote my own work and fellow coursemates pages.
The first four weeks went well as I had enough time and content to meet my 3 posts per week aim, after beginning to use hashtags I gained progressively more likes per week and as a result of this gained more followers, around week four I began following more people, which also meant more people followed me back.
For week 5 and 6 I dropped off when it came to posting more content as I feel I am very critical of my work and felt I didn't produce anything new that I was comfortable posting online as I didn't want to ruin the style of my campaign by posting bad work. Also in the early stages I didn't make as much of an effort when it came to hashtags, I only put hastags of the really relevant things which was a mistake as later on in the campaign I used more hashtags and got a lot more likes than previous posts, consequently the post I put most hashtags in, gained the most likes.
Overall I am happy with how the campaign went, I just would have liked to have not have two weeks away from posting but with a large amount of work to do I felt I didn't have enough time to sit down and sketch more designs or produce more content. After reaching 200 followers, I stopped following more people and as a result my following has stayed at around 200 followers.
To create a video of between 1 to 5 minutes which should focus on semiotics and creativity and should plan accordingly.
The first thought that came to mind when I was introduced to this project was a promotional video for a TV series I am interested in, I made a note of specific shows that would be possible to create a motion graphic for, if there was a new series being released or something similar. Game of Thrones season 7 is just around the corner so I thought I'd create a motion graphic based on that.
Initially I wanted to create an animation, but even with enough planning it would have taken me longer than the given time as I would still have to complete other projects. I then decided I would just try and turn the characters into cartoon versions and play through each character in series 7, however after speaking with Corin, he suggested I use actual images in stead of making them cartoon, and that I should try to create a bit of movement in the still images by using Displacement Mapping and Mesh Warps, which I found to be considerably hard mainly because a lot of the images involved more than just the shoulders and head of each character so the style didn't look as good as if I had stills of just their heads. For the beginning part of the motion graphic I thought it would be best to have a quick pulsate of each houses sigil in Game of Thrones, with war drums as the backing sound, which would fade into the Game of Thrones theme music and display each major character in the seventh season.
Before speaking with Corin, these were my initial designs.
I created a folder for each section of the project as it made it easier to find each asset to add them into After Effects.
To begin with I collected images of the characters from the Game of Thrones series, after speaking with my lecturer, Corin I researched ways of adding displacement maps to the images. I then followed these tutorials using Photoshop and After Effects.
To add a distortion mesh to images in after effects you first have to open the image up in Photoshop. You then place a black rectangle over the whole image then change the opacity to around 60%. Next you will need to select the character without the background, using the Quick Selection tool is quickest and easiest. Then with either your brush or paint bucket change the opacity of the paint to 15% and paint white over the character, to add depth the character should get darker for the further away parts of their body, as you can see in the middle image above. You then open the .psd file up in After Effects (make sure to make the black rectangle 100% opacity before saving) and hide the rectangle layer. Select Displacement map and place it on the character layer, in the effects tab you then change the Displacement Map Layer to your rectangle layer which is hidden, you can then play around with the settings to try and create movement in your character or image.
Once I had finished editing the video I added music, a war horn for the title, war drums for the sigils and the Game of Thrones theme song for the characters and credits.
In this project I feel one or two things went well, one thing I thought was the initial designing on Photoshop before bringing the images to After Effects for the displacement map. I also thought the transitions between characters went well as well as the intro with the flashing sigils and the music to go with them.
I feel like as a whole the displacement maps looked quite bad, this was due to poor choice of images but it was very hard to find images of still shots from the series without there being one problem or another. If I was to do this project again I would like to create something similar to the Luther opening title sequence, just in a Game of Thrones type fashion. That was the initial idea with my First Designs however I didn't understand properly how to create that. Personally I feel like it was a mixture of poor time management and lack of skill in certain areas of After Effects.