Antisocial: Part II (Graphic Design)

{{...And YOU thought that I had forgotten about my 'Antisocial' series. Think again! I will be posting the 3rd and final installment this week or next (I wrote the actual blogs a while ago- this was written January 9...I just had to get the images). Then I will post my art from this past semester. The camera is up and functional again, so here we go!}}

Wow! I got a lot of feedback to my first installment of my Antisocial series...thank you all so much! You have no idea...after slaving away on these projects it's nice to just present them and hear what people say.

On to my second time-consuming class in Fall 2008: Graphic Design.
In this class, we had to make up an alternative fuel company. We went through many series of sketches, drafts, and printouts to get to the point we could produce a good final project. Joe Jackson was our teacher, and our class turned into a big survival posse, as we'd all work slavishly on the h-fac computers or in the print lab.

The project: Brand a pseudo-alternative fuel company.
We first researched alternative fuel companies, then based on what we learned or what interested us most, we each picked one. I picked hydrogen fuel. Then, we produced sketches of ideas for a logo for that type of company.

However, before we kept sketching or started taking our ideas to the computer, Joe had us think of traits or qualities that we wanted our company to have. We made a long list of these qualities. Then, we had to narrow it down to our top three. Mine came out to be:

1- innovative
2- intuitive
3- user-friendly

Then we based our sketches around these qualities. It was an interesting process: it kind of made me think backward. I liked it, because it turned out to be more applicable. We went through a series of what we called "horizontal thinking", which was to expand our ideas in many different directions. Here are a few of mine (out of MANY MANY sketches I did....I have a notebook full of them. Literally).

After we picked about 3 logos that suited us, we continued to expand into "vertical thinking" which was to go in depth on those 3 ideas. Finally, we produced our logo, based on our initial 3 words and presented it. Later, we chose the company name. Joe didn't care so much about the name as he did about the typeface and whether or not it went with the traits and logo of the company. Eventually, we presented the logo and company name:

Then we did a "transformation" assignment: We had to "transform" our logo to fit a bunch of requirements, which was actually pretty fun. The explanations for the transformations are under each one.

After that, we went on to do what was probably the most laborious part of the process: the corporate, or brand, identity package. We had to successfully brand a letterhead, envelope, and business card. It took a LOT of time and concentration, with a prevailing eye for accuracy.

Draft after draft, dead tree after dead tree, we finally got to the point where we could call it complete. We selected special paper to print on, and I did waste a bit. Then we had to mount it. Here's mine:

*note: it looks way cooler in person. cool texture and everything.

(And here are the actual files. Click to enlarge. They look in their final printed stage [so come by and see!], but not so great in the above photo.)

Throughout the process, we were always thinking of application ideas. It couldn't be
"swag" (basically anything you could buy at a football game: pencils, mugs, t-shirts, etc...unless we could convince Joe). It needed to correspond to our company and logo. I decided to screen print a white canvas bag, used for shopping in grocery stores instead of wasting paper or plastic materials. Simple, but I was okay with that:

(I should acknowledge that I couldn't have done this last part without Jeff, who found me the white canvas bag. A normal tan colored canvas wouldn't have worked with this, because that would introduce another color into my color scheme. Tricky, eh? I also couldn't have done it without Craig, who connected me with his brother's friend Steve, who screen printed it for me.)

Then, we presented. And it felt gooood.

Travis Lovell (who was at one point my photography teacher and now works in the print lab) made the comment that was along the lines of, "graphic designers notice the tiniest things that no one else would ever even think about checking." So annoying. But it separates good designers from excellent ones.

Again, comments are appreciated. Let me know what you think!

*all images copyright kristin gulledge, 2008.


Obituary of a Beloved Fallen Tree

[I originally wrote this on April 17-18, 2009 but didn't post because I didn't have photos. I took all the photos in this post the morning of April 16.]

I tend to be an optimistic person. When it happens to snow in April, I'm usually like, "Hey, snow. Cool. Wanna make a snow castle?"

However, the snowstorm last night destroyed something that I can't get back. Those of you who know me well know that
I'm pretty passionate about nature (think about it). It's sad to hear about the natural disasters and such. However, on the fateful early morning of Thursday, April 16, my mom raced into my room and informed me to look out the window. I went to the front door and saw what's depicted in the photo on the topright. When I realized that our once huge, slender beautiful tree with fresh pink blossoms that resided just outside of my window had come crashing down due to the bizarre inclement weather, I was heartbroken. This wasn't just any tree...it was one of the things that I loved most about my home.

So...I am writing an obituary.
Our dear pink blossomed tree fought a good fight for over 19 years [ever since we bought our home] until a terrible accident took its life. Vile bitty critters had infested and weakened its once sturdy trunk, but when a freak snow storm crept upon the unassuming town of Provo, the little tree couldn't fight any longer. Its branches, already weak with disease, were suddenly laden with the extra weight of wet snow.
No longer do we have the pink beautiful tree that held the memories of six childhoods and a caring mother who watched over it through the years. Our yard seems empty, and we will sorely miss its previous occupant.

It is preceded by its elder peach tree, two umbrella trees, and a weeping willow, due to similar accidents. It is survived by two umbrella trees, three pine trees, a few rocks and an apple tree (one that sustained major injuries as well, and is now in critical condition but will be fine).

We will miss you, little tree.

I partly write this in humor, but it actually has been a really hard last couple of days for Mom and I. That tree had a lot more than just branches and leaves. It was the tree that I most associated with our home. In reality, it was an extension of our home; it grew up with me. I do miss it, sappy as it sounds (no pun intended).

Some favorite memories include:
- climbing it when i was little and staying there, reading books
- climbing it and observing my big brother Jonny [on the ground] stick up for me when his friend poked fun at me, not knowing i was in the tree
-playing hide-and-seek and other games with my nieces and nephews around the tree
-seeing the pink blossomed trees around Provo and swelling with pride a bit to know I had a tree just as gorgeous (if not more so) in my very own front yard
-watching the setting sun's beams pierce through the tree
-taking sibling pictures beside it and glamor shots of my sister in front of it
-having to duck underneath its branches when walking to my front door, basking in the scent of the blossoms
-looking out my window, just to see it there
-my mom telling me (when I was very young) that I couldn't eat the red berry-looking things...they were NOT cherries :)
-the first time there was snow and blossoms...at the same time

It's been a few days...but still I get a sad little shock when I look outside and recognize its absence.

For those of you who had any experiences with our tree or with their own, or would just like to add anything, please record them under the "thoughts" part. I'd love to hear.

I think that I'll plant a pink-blossomed tree in my front yard when I have my own home someday.