Thursday, 27 September 2012

ISTD Brief

I have fancied doing an ISTD brief for quite a while now, so it's obviously going to be one of my ten briefs. I like the idea to use one of these briefs to make into a really substantial research driven brief, producing a publication as the outcome to hold the information that I research and find out.

As well as being a competition brief, this will also be a good skills driven brief as I want to produce some sort of high end looking publication, focusing on the type and layout skills in it pushing them further than what I have already.

But first, I must choose which brief I would like to have a go at.


After the briefing back on to level 06 with Fred, we were informed that we need to have at least a minimum of 4 substantial briefs to do in response to the first module. Considering the briefs that I have so far, I think I have these covered as they are ones that I want to get started with straight away.

The ones that I want to use for this module for definite are:

  • Make Your Mark
  • Hot n Tasty
  • Typographic Expression

I also want to have a solid, research driven brief (which I will come to blog soon that will be based on an ISTD brief). That then covers the 4 minimum briefs. We were told that there must be one competition brief, one live brief, one personal brief and one that doubles up on any of these.

Make Your Mark - Personal & Competition (D&AD)
Hot n Tasty - Live
Typographic Expression - Personal
Research Brief - Competition (ISTD)

Obviously, I want to try and push myself to do more than 4 briefs to try and ensure that I fulfil the module criteria the best that I can, so I will plan my time out effectively and see what I can do. I don't want to spread myself too thin and not complete briefs to the standard that I would like to, but at the same time I don't want to spend too long doing one thing when some of the time could be better spent doing others.

The other ones I would possibly like to also do during this first module is the collaboration with Baljeet on a branding brief, and possibly the fashion brand one. I am also going to keep my eyes open for any live briefs/other competitions that may come up.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

End of Year Show '13

When I was on the ND Graphic Design course at this college, in the first year they set one of the briefs on there for us to come up with an idea to put forward to pitch to the live end of year show brief competition. I really enjoyed the process of this, and have read the emails since then with the brief on there and fancied giving it a proper go.

The outcomes for this brief will be determined by the requirements of the brief that will be sent out from the college, but I will make sure that I aim to fulfil the requirements of it with a solid idea.

Collaboration #2

Another collaboration that is on the table is one between myself, Baljeet and Beth. We have talked about working together to pitch for us to design one of the year books. We all worked together during level 05 on the Enterprise brief, and we each brought different but useful skills to the brief and I believe that it would be the same when we come to doing this brief too.

Which year book we will be pitching for is yet to be decided, so after a cheeky pint I think we will have a lot more decisions made that need to be.

Collaboration #1

The first collaboration project that I have planned is with Baljeet. We have talked about it during level 05 that we would do some sort of branding brief. We have talked briefly about it over the last few days and have decided to have a proper sit down to plan the possibilities of what we could do.

I think collaborating with Baljeet will be interesting because we like similar sort of design work, and are both mainly type driven so pulling our skill sets together on a project would be good.

For now the actual brief and outcomes are yet to be confirmed, but the collaboration is on the table.

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Quick Review

Since my last blogging spurt, I've come up with more potential ideas for my 10 briefs to do (hopefully more than what I need, giving me the chance to choose!), but before I continue to type away until early hours I thought I would take a step back with what I have so far to see how I can move on from this.

At the end of level 05, we were given a list of categories for our briefs to fall under:

  • Research briefs
  • Competition briefs
  • Skills Driven briefs
  • Live briefs
  • Collaborative briefs

Looking at this list, and the briefs that I have already come up with, I figured I may as well see which categories the ones I have come up with fall under, to make sure that I don't end up with way too many in one category and none in others.

Your Own Memorial - Skills Driven brief
The main point of doing this brief, as discussed in my blog post for it, is to use it to really push the skills that I learnt from the type module so it definitely fall into the Skills Driven briefs category. It could also fall into the research one as it is all based on what primary research I collect.

Typographic Expression - Skills Driven brief
I think the line from my blog post 'could make the posters pretty damn sexy' says all it needs to for this brief being under the Skills Driven category.

Hot N Tasty - Live brief
This brief will be me rebranding an existing company and getting input from the owner of it, so this makes it fall under the Live briefs category.

Clothing Brand - Skills Driven brief
As it stands at the moment, I'm looking at taking the route of coming up with an idea for this from scratch so it falls under the skills driven briefs category. Even so, this may change if I end up working with an existing small brand before I start it then making it into a Live brief.

Make Your Mark - Skills Driven brief
This is based on myself, my own work and contacting studios, so it's a skills driven brief for sure, although if they have this one available again as one of the D&AD briefs to enter (where I got the idea from originally) then that would then make it fall into the competition briefs category. I will have to wait and see for that one though.

So... most of the briefs fall into the Skills Driven briefs category. I don't really see this as a bad thing as obviously I am wanting to push my skills further and get better at what I do. With the rest of the briefs that I blog about I will make sure that I have ones that also fall into the other categories (which they do).  

Although, after reading through the descriptions for each of the categories, some of the briefs fall into more than one of the categories. If I was to see it like this, and say they were in more than one then that would be:

Research briefs
Your Own Memorial

Competition briefs
Make Your Mark

Skills Driven briefs
Your Own Memorial
Typographic Expression
Clothing Brand
Make Your Mark

Live briefs
Hot N Tasty

Collaborative briefs
(None yet, but have some planned that I haven't blogged about yet)

I really need to finish blogging what ideas I do have and start making some decisions!

Friday, 14 September 2012

Typographic Expression 2

When ever I think back to the Typographic Expression idea that I have I don't really feel it's a brief for me to do as one of my 10. I've tried a few times now to consider how I could really develop it, taking into account the ideas that I have come up with already for it.

I think using the names is a bit too similar to the Your Own Memorial brief idea, so I think I want to develop away from this because it's a bit daft having two briefs being that similar - may as well make it into one brief if I was.

I like the idea of doing something relating to music, so I have decided that that will be the first area that I will develop it into. Also, I want to do a brief that would be a possible poster series, and I think that this starting idea would be pretty ideal for this.

  • Could select a specific band with many well known songs to produce a poster for say their top 10 tracks?
  • Could do a poster for each album that they have done, incorporating the songs into it that have been released from the album.
  • Could choose just one song that has story to it, and then produce a set of posters that develop from each other going through the whole song.
  • Could make it into a poster series where I design one a week for the duration of the module, producing a poster for a song I randomly hear/listen to at some point throughout the week - this would add more variety and a bit more of a challenge to the bried, especially if it is a song I am not so keen on or don't really know too well.
  • Would be a great project again to practice type skills, but also be a good brief from an aesthetic point of view - could make the posters pretty damn sexy (or at least try to).
Definitely liking the development of this brief so far and am a lot more keen on it now.

Clothing Brand

A couple of posts that I have added recently on to my DC blog have been of designs relating to a clothing brand, where the studio have designed things like the logo and what not for them. I really like the idea of this, and how I could produce something similar and possibly push it into a full branding brief designing everything for a clothing brand from the logo, through to the in store merch, as well as possibly a website and advertising both print and on screen.

For this, I could either team up with an existing, small clothing brand that is just starting out and offer to produce this for them, or at least ask to borrow their name, or alternatively I could come up with this from scratch and not make it into a live brief. I do like the not being a live brief idea so that I would have complete freedom on the project as a whole, but at the same time I think making it into a live brief would make it more real and add some boundaries for me to stick to.

This is a brief that I know I want to undertake, so I will keep my eyes peeled in the mean time for a possible collab with a small clothing brand just starting out and maybe ask around a bit, but if nothing does come up then I will go ahead and do the brief anyway starting from scratch with it.

  • Starting from scratch wouldn't mean that I would also design the clothes that would be available under the brand.
  • I will look into designing the brand to be both an online store as well as being an in store one.
  • I'll look into designing everything down to the small details that would maybe not always be considered to be designed.
  • The colour scheme I use will be the key to the whole project and highly influence what I do and how I present the work at the end.
  • This will be an interesting branding brief.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Make Your Mark

When I came across this work that I added on to my DC blog here, it reminded me of one of the D&AD briefs from last year that I came across called Make Your Mark.

"Open Brief 2 - Make Your Mark
Already planned your dream career? Well, make it happen. Make your mark as you enter the industry; we want to see what you’ve got, and how you intend to use it. There are a lot of graduates out there, how are you going to stand out from the crowd?"

The brief asks you to target your dream design studio, and produce something to make yourself stand out to them and know you exist basically. I really like the idea of targeting studios on a personal level so that they would take you more seriously. I've been wanting to design some sort of direct mail to send out to potential design studios that I really like, so I think making this into one of my briefs would be a good idea.

  • I could produce a specific number to do in response to the brief, say 10? That I actually do and mail out and wait for a response from, but could also make it open so that it could be easily edited to send out to more if I choose to.
  • Could be a basic design that can be easily updated or changed to suit specific design studios. 
  • Great way to get my name out there and getting studios I like to see my work and potentially gain something from.
  • It will allow me to put more time and effort into this to make sure it turns out successfully - I don't want to be making a fool of myself sending out something rushed!
  • It will allow me to really asses myself and how I would like to represent myself in something like this. Could even stretch it out to do my business card to match and website as well.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Typographic Expression

Searching for examples of existing student briefs which have been set online, I came across the Creative Times student design briefs, where they set 5 different briefs which 3 different students for each of the briefs attempted to solve the brief using their own interpretations.

One of the briefs is titled 'typographic expression' and seen as I am wanting to focus a lot on typography and develop my skills in this area, obviously this brief stood out to me. Full brief can be seen here -

"The Task
Choose one of the following artists: Salvador Dali, Kurt Schwitters, or Pablo Picasso. Your task is to express the personality/beliefs of your chosen artist using only their name (i.e. if Kurt Schwitters is chosen, you must say something about him/his work through the words ‘Kurt Schwitters’, using expressive typography). The words you use must be the name alone (no other words should be added). Your work must be completely typographic (i.e. no pictorial elements)."

This brief seems pretty simple with what it is asking for, although research into the individuals would be the key to achieving something successful in response. In some ways, this feels a little similar to the 'your own memorial' brief that I have found and tweaked into, but is different because this would be based on famous, well known people that everyone would be familiar with so would ultimately be more of a challenge to do.

Even so, it does seem a little 'too' simple with what it is asking for, if I do go on to choose this brief as one of my ten, I would look into possibly pushing it further to be more substantial to work as one. I've decided to have a good think into the possible ways that I could push it or maybe even just use it as a starting point for something I think would be more suited.


  • The main points I got from the mind map was to do some sort of collection of them.
  • I like the idea for choosing an actor/actress and doing their name over and over to represent each of the different roles they have done.
  • Also really like using all main characters to do them for from one film/tv programme.

Whilst I like the idea of the simplicity of this, I still don't feel like I have a solid enough idea for it just yet that I could see myself doing as one of my ten briefs. I'll keep thinking about it for now and see.

Hot n Tasty

A friend of my mum own's two cafes in the Barnsley area. They are relatively popular and have some great tasting food. They originally started out with one not far from where we live, and after the success of that they decided to open up a second one (actually named Hot n Tasty II) in a different area. I don't really know too much into the history of it all, how they got started or the time limits of opening or plannings or anything like that, but from the design point of view, I think that this must have been one of the details they didn't really believe to be as important. For example...

Here is an image of the sign of their first cafe. Whilst yeah, it does its job in letting people know what they need to... yeah.

From a potential brief point of view, I could look into re designing their appearance, and look into designing things such as menu boards, advertisements, leaflets, uniforms, shop signs, etc for them. I will have a chat to Julie (the cafe owner) about this potential project to get her opinion on it, and whether I would get the thumbs up from her to go for it. It wouldn't necessarily be a live brief as such to the point where they would go ahead and use what I produce, but it would from the point that I would work on something live alongside a client getting her input into what I design and produce.

Before making any more decisions or ideas for this, first I must pay them a visit...

Barnbrook Education - Your Own Memorial

Here is one of the briefs that I have gotten from the website highlighted on my previous blog post to consider as one of my final 10 briefs.

When you die, people think that all that is left is just some kind of gravestone, I would say its less than that, its the piece of typography that is written on the gravestone, that is the actual reminder of you. All of your life summed up in a little piece of twirly type. With that in mind I would like you to produce some kind of typographic memorial that sums up your life for when you die. /// This project is as difficult or as easy as you make it, but make it interesting for yourself as this project is about you and your points of view on life."

Admittedly, the thought of producing something for your own death is a pretty morbid thought, but after thinking about the brief a bit, and reading the 'things to consider' list below the summary on the website, I think this brief could be tweaked a bit and made into something quite interesting.

Taking thing number 6 into account "06. That this project is very much within the area of typography, so although its very free make sure that there is an element of typographic investigation in the final piece.", I think this brief would be a good way to possibly put into practice skills I learnt from the type module last year. I could tweak the brief to do it on other people rather than myself, and see this as a challenge to portray the number of people I decided to do, incorporating their presence, personality, etc into a piece of typography which just from looking at it gives the best impression about the person as I could achieve. I could possibly develop it to either step away from gravestones and into possibly a print focused project, or keep it about them and do some thorough research into the limitations and possibilities which would occur from this.


  • Whilst I think it would be interesting to develop into a print based project, I like the idea of having the limitations and research to do into the possibilities of having the piece of typography I produce for each individual for a gravestone.
  • Using it to focus towards a gravestone gives the project a little bit more of a purpose.
  • I think 10 is a good amount to base this project on. It's a good number to get variety within what I produce, but not too many that I run out of ideas of what to do or start producing things that look too samey.
  • Good for primary research - besides the research into the gravestone, all information that I will use to produce each piece will be completely primary coming straight from the people themselves - conduct interviews.
  • Great way to put to good use typography skills, and possibly even develop from this into a bit of decorative type as well?

Barnbrook Education

A while ago whilst doing the usual wasting time looking on things like Twitter and Facebook, I came across this link - I just had a quick glance, thought it seemed interesting and that was it, but now I've come back to it now I'm looking for potential briefs and it could actually prove to be quite useful.

On there is 3 briefs written by Jonathan Barnbrook for students to see and possibly have a go at if they wish to do so. After reading through them, two of the briefs have taken my interest and I think could be possible interesting ones to use/tweak for my chosen 10. I have gone into more details about these in the following blog posts in order to keep them separate and avoid this post being too long and boring.

Level 06

Already? Oh dear.