This blog was one of the many projects I was assigned to do for the most difficult class I have – It’s copywriting. I reason I’ve had so much difficulty with this assignment as a whole is because I have a learning disability known as dyslexia. Which is a remarkably hard word to spell for a disability that effects reading and writing. For example the other day I spelled “to” like “ot” you’ll probably notice the correction in my take home test. Writing has always been difficult for me. and I still struggle with it to this day. I first learned that I was dyslexic when I was in grade four. One day, I was pulled out of class and was told to do a flurry of different difficult test and experiments from some women I had never seen before. This went on for about four days, meeting with this random women for long 3-4 hour testing marathons. Afterwords the testing stopped and everything returned to normal. Classes went on just like every other day. As time passed I wondered what it was all about. Then one day the women showed up at the school again, I said to myself “poop, more test!” but this time it was different. My mother was there. The women went on to explain why I did all the testing, and what it meant. I’m dyslexia and it sucks, and thats the reason I hate long writing assignments.
After searching around the net for some new photoshop techniques I could possible learn a thing or to about I found this video here. In this five minute video you see everything thats wrong with society. The process in the video is known a “Retouching”. This is the act editing a photo to be more appealing(using the word loosely) to the viewers eye. If you take the time and watch the video you’ll see exactly whats done to a professional level photograph of a professional model. What happens in the 5 mins isn’t so much as “Retouching” but something more along the lines of “Resculpting”. Now as a man, A man that know photoshop quite well I’ve know about this for some time now. What bothers me the most about “
Retouching Resculpting” is the fact that it’s done so heavily to women. Women in society strive to be just like these photos in magazines which are completely unreachable, and unrealistic. I don’t know where this “Ideal Women” body type came from because to me it’s not beautiful. It’s borderline sick, and gross looking. I love women with curves, in my eyes thats beautiful. I women with shape, not pointy bones. I understand everyone has something they don’t like about themselves, and yes photoshop can and does fix them, but completely altering the shape of a women to appear to look “Beautiful” is to much. We need to do more to stop this kind of saver alterations, because it’s a lie. In Canada we don’t allow lying in TV commercial, so why do we accept “Retouching”?
After taking web design with Sean Grant I’ve really started to view website in a whole new light. Before I started doing any kind of web design I really was just like every one else that was on the web. I viewed websites how they loaded on my computer never really looking into anything with much detail. Facebook and youtube were just two sites I visited on a daily bases. But after web class I learned how websites were built and the time it takes to make a site. Let me tell you I’ve really come to look at the web with new eyes. Web design was so much more impact on the viewer then you would ever think. Everything is done so the viewer will stay on your site longer, every detail is strategically thought out on a properly designed website. Designing a web site is much harder than it ever was because the mobile devices has changed everything. Mobile device screens are much smaller then a computer is so a website has to be coded with this in mind, this is known as a “responsive design”. Wordpress is actually designed to be responsive site. If you grab you a side of the browser and drag it in the opposite direction you’ll notice the the screen changes as your display changes size. I definitely plan to learn responsive design this summer.
This could possibly be the best thing I’ve ever seen in my life. As I’ve perviously talk about in my blog, video is something I’ve been trying to teach myself and I freaking love typography. This video a an amazing example of whats known as a Typographic Motion Video. I’ve seen this kind of stuff before but didn’t know what it was called up until now. Typographic Motion Videos are not only beautiful but are technically very difficult to make/ produce. The reason for this is everything has to be perfectly on time and matching up exactly when the reader or singer changes what he/she said. To make it even more difficult you have to add effects and motion within the word so the viewer doesn’t get bored and move on to the next video. If the video just had plain text popping up in front of you, you would quickly grow tired of it. Another thing I liked about this video was the choice in colour. Yellow is my favourite colour, and when I see it used in a minimal colour pallet I get a teary eyed! To whom every created the this beautiful piece of motion typography, I salute you.
One of the first true hobbies I picked beside painting was photography. I wanted to get into photography mainly for two reasons. One, was to be able to look back on all the things I’ve done in my life such as travel, and the other would be to get my lazy ass out of my house, and still be able to do something creative. That’s something I’ve always tried to do in my life, make stuff more beautiful or better to look at. I think that is why I’ve choosing Graphic Design. But yes, photography was one of my first hobbies that a truly got into. It started when I managed to scramble up $800 to buy my first DSLR a Canon Rebel XSI. After that purchase, it seemed like someone opened the flood gates and the money just seemed to poured out of my pockets. I needed everything: telephoto zoom lens, flash, camera bag, tripod, battery grip, and filters. You name it I wanted it, next thing I know I’ve spent $2000 on camera gear! There always seemed to be something else I needed for my camera, but the one thing I’ve always wanted but never could offered was an Canon L-Series lens, these babies were top of the line Canon lens that normally started at $1100 – to this day I still don’t have one. Photography was something that made me happy and I loved doing it, then one day I just didn’t have time to go out and shoot anymore… Kinda like painting, and then school consumed my life.
Recently I’ve started looking into doing some video editing and design work for a couple other projects of mine. It first started when I visited Studio 123(www.studio123.ca) site they launched. They use a repeating video in the background which I found added a very cool and unique feel to their site. I was curious to see not only if I could do something along these lines with my site but if video editing was something maybe I wanted to peruse, and could possible teach myself and add to my repertoire. Knowing that Adobe’s video editing soft wear was called After Effects(AE), I went ahead and got a the Creative Cloud version. Now the first time I opened this program I sure as shit was intimidated! After reading a little into the functionality of AE and watching the “basics” video adobe offers, I became more comfortable with how the program works. The user interface was less intimidating after words. The first video I managed to string together actually wasn’t that bad and I’m using it for my freelance collective (www.unioncollective.ca) I’ve started with some class mates. I think video is going to be the direction web design is heading and we’re going to be getting away from dated slideshows we see today. All in all video wasn’t the worst thing I’ve tired to teach myself, and I most definitely will be perusing it in the future.
I think it’s about time we talk a little nerdy for and bit and we dig into the differences between vector art file formats. First I think its important to understand what vector art is. Heres a simple way to explain how vector art works, vector art uses points and lines to create you art, All of the your points and lines are ran through a mathematical algorithm which takes into account where all the points and lines are in relation to each other, and because of mathematical algorithm behind it all the vector art is 100% scaleable both large and small. Okay, so lets jump in, files with an extension of “.ai” are in todays times the standard for vector art file format. Ai files are Adobe Illustrator’s(side note Adobe Illustrator is my favourite program) native format and to me it’s the most versatile formate out there, because almost ever vector program will open this file type. Our next runner up in the line of formats is the grampa of the bunch, the almighty “.eps” stands for Encapsulated Post Script. This format just like all the other vector formats in the world work the same way. This format has some defects within it mainly because its an old format, for example eps can’t render a gradation properly and turns them into bands of colour. Lastly we have the Scaleable Vector Graphic or it’s also known as a “.svg”. Scaleable Vector Graphic have one benefit that all the others do not, it can be used on the web. This feature comes in handy when your developing a fully responsive website. Vector Graphics are a major part in the design world and these three format are only a few that came to mind, I could go on for days.
Recently I’ve started a business with my father Paul Ouellette. The company is known as North American Wraps (www.northamericanwraps.com), and we’re a local company specializing in the design, production, and distribution of vehicle wraps. These past 16 months have really been a never ending roller coster. The reason this NAW has managed to reach the position that its currently at is really because of three things, One managing to acquire a grant for $25000 from Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation, Secondly after doing some digging around town and finding what I think could possibly be the best corporation in all of sudbury Nickel Basin Development Corporation for funding to get the grant, and last but not least Andrew at All Graphic Supplies for giving us one of the best possible deals on our brand new Mimaki CJV 30-130 and a Royal Sovereign RSC-1401C. Our equipment, or what a refer to that the office as “my babies” are really what makes all of this happen at North American Wraps. The Mimaki CJV 30-130 is our wide-formate printer and cutter which prints/cuts 54″ wide and basically does all the grunt work for use. The Royal Sovereign RSC-1401C is the laminator which applies the laminate to protect the printed material from scratching and fading from the UV rays. I’ve been using this printer for about a year now so this wasn’t anything new to me, my pervious employer had purchased the same printer, and this is where I learned basically everything about it now when it comes to this large machine. The laminator on the other hand was a dream come true. This scary beast of a monster is one beautiful piece of fully automated equipment that makes our life so much easier, and I’m so happy we spent the money on it. Being a start-up business has been fun but I’m tired of working on it and not turing a profit, soon the money will start flowing… I can just feel it!
Infographics are an emerging trend coming from the graphic design field/ industry. The purpose of a infographic is to distill complex information into small bite size pieces so that the reader can easily grasp the overall message. One of the main problems I’ve come to notice is when an infographic has become overly illustrated. Almost as if the piece was to lacking in the information side of the project so the designer just dresses the piece up with a fancy background, and adds all kinds of other visuals that don’t necessarily pertain to the consumption of information for the reader. A positive aspect of an infographic on the other hand is that the reader is able to take so much more information away from one powerful piece of design then they would be able to if they were to look at the raw data used to create the piece. Infographics defiantly have their positives and negative aspects to them but I can see a trend forming were the infrographic will be a sought after piece of design just like business card or website
– The infographic is here to stay.
One of my core design beliefs is that typography is one of the most important aspects when it come to design. Typography is the art or procedure of arranging type or processing data and printing from it (Apple dictionary), but it’s more then just typing something up and your job is done as this definition would suggest. In fact its much more complicated then that for example headings, subheadings, captions, call-outs, and body copy are all entirely separate pieces of text that will make up a single article, but each and every piece has to be styled independently, and still look visually like they belong together. Font families such as Garamond, Caslon, have managed to stand a true test of time, and because of this have become some of the most versatile families around having type specimens tailored for specific uses such as headings and captions. Garamond and Caslon are whats known as serif typefaces which I’ve always found difficult to use in my more modern approach to design. When it comes to my more modern designs I normally opted for a sans serif typeface not only for the readability but the cleanliness they offer. I’ve always found something beautiful about a well rendered sans serif typeface such as Brandon Grotesque / Text, Verlag, and Gotham. I can go on for hours about type and font families, and how important it is to the end product of your design. In the end I just want to go out with this on my last note… Don’t skimp out on the type it’s so important!