Visual Language

Week 6: Business Card

For my first personal business card I considered several questions:

Can I match the look of my website? At the moment my website is titled with my name all in lower case letters using Proxima Nova font. Capitalizing the start of my first and last names, "E" and "N" respectively, introduces straight lines that project a formality that I'm not feeling at the moment. If I keep my name entirely lowercase the next question becomes, how I can keep my name/logo distinguished from that of celebrity Ellen Degeneres' and her show?

Next, can I keep the design clean and eliminate redundant information? What is the least amount of information required? It seems repetitive to provide my name, my email address (which includes my partial name), and my website address (which is my full name) on my business card. This site contains links to my email address and my LinkedIn profile. If I just publish my website address on my card, will that suffice if folks really want to get in touch with me? If they do wish to make additional contact, they'll need to visit my site and see more of my work in the process. 

Finally, and the ultimate question I suppose: how can I uniquely represent myself and my current creative interests in visual perception? Over the years I've collected others' cards and found myself drawn to simple black and white designs with a personal touch--usually hand drawn or personalized graphic elements. So I decided to play around with several designs I created recently in my computational media class--a pixelated self portrait and variations from an animation.

After creating several iterations on my computer with both visuals, it was helpful to print them out and handle them as objects. The one with the portrait stood out as the best to balance all the elements of format, image, and text, not to mention the strongest in its representation of me. A 2" square card was card way too small, so I bumped it 2.5". I also settled on the final iteration of my name/website which turned out to most closely match my name as it appears on this site. I even tried the portrait in the traditional 3.5" x 2" business card format, but I preferred the image to stand on its own.

After completing this process, I couldn't help but wonder who uses business cards anymore? Isn't is easier to snap a photo on your phone, bookmark someone's site directly, or follow on social media? Even more reasons to create an artistic artifact worth holding.

Week 5: Composition

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After our lesson on composition, our assignment was to create a card/poster for the upcoming ITP winter show. Though I've barely just begun, I knew wanted tell a story about this program to the outside world. ITP encompasses so many dynamic people, ideas, and possibilities. How to tell the story of such a rich, stimulating environment? I started by listing key words that have so far defined my experience here: community, collaboration, curiosity, imagination, international, creativity, diversity, ideas, skills, and so many interests: art, music, dance, media, mixed realities, science, literature...and on and on and on. I heart this place and my peers!

After generating that list I immediately remembered the Noun Project, which sparked the inspiration to craft the letters of ITP from these words as graphic elements. Similar to my sign redesign in Week 2, I looked for icons of similar line quality and weight. 

Next In Adobe Illustrator, I used the grid and guidelines to map out a general layout for the icons and show details. On a new layer, I then added and composed with the graphics and copy, incorporating the official NYU purple. I originally started with a font from the Avenir typeface and played with a few others from our recommended list, but they seemed too hard and serious alongside the whimsy and lightness I associated with the icons. I eventually found two handwritten-style fonts: Claire Hand and Permanent Marker. Finally, I wanted viewers to simultaneously recognize the letters but continue to explore the individual images. I compressed the space between the icons, and in Photoshop, filled in areas with lighter shades of purple and two accent colors to further define the shapes of the letters. I made a vertical version for fun, too. (The border is for display on the blog only.)

Image Credits from the Noun Project:
Balloon by Ananth
Cable by Daria Moskvina
Camera by Alfa Design
Coding by Mushu
Dancing by Matt Brooks
Globe by Edward Boatman
Hand by Mikhail Bazilevsky
Heart by Vladimir Belochkin
Interaction by Wira
Led bulb by Alina Oleynik
Magic Wand by Matthew R. Miller
Music by Satisfactory
Painting by Arthur Shlain
Rainbow by Grégory Montigny
Robot by AliWijaya
Science2 by Jivan
Teamwork by Mahmure Alp
Train by H Alberto Gongora
UFO by Eucalyp
Virtual Reality Headset by Hopkin
Wifi by Mello

Week 4: Color


For this week's assignment, I prepared a personal palette of five colors from which I then created six compositions. To consider my color choices, I assembled items from my home that give me joy specifically because of their colors, like this painting by a dear former colleague, my plants, and my patio table. Using this composition as a starting point, I next turned to Adobe Color CC to make my selection. The compositions that followed were an opportunity to see how the colors interact with one another and also to recognize that I've surround myself with this family of colors in my living space.

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