Immediate Media work placement

This week I have had the pleasure of spending the week based at Immediate Media office in Bristol, in the branded content department doing a week long work placement.

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Immediate Media is a multi-platform consumer media business, it currently employees 1350 employees over 5 different locations. The company was formed in November 2011 when Magicalia merged with BBC magazines and Origin Publishing. They have a multi-platform model, that includes print, digital content creation, data management and transactional models. Their print portfolio consists of many of the UK’s best-loved brands and they sell over 74million magazines per year, including the UK’s most profitable magazine brand: the Radio Times.

As you can imagine, I was extremely excited and also apprehensive at the beginning of this week before starting the placement. Immediate is such a successful business that I felt as if I maybe wouldn’t be good enough and would feel really out of my depth working in there, I was nervous I wouldn’t be able to do what they asked of me. However, I quickly realised I was wrong. I was very grateful for the fact everyone in the department was extremely friendly and welcoming and I quickly felt at ease in the office. I began by doing a short photo research task, after that, I was given the task to do a double page spread for the Greater Anglia train magazine. When I was tasked with this I was extremely happy because I knew that editorial layouts are one of the things that I enjoy the most and also feel like I do the best.

On Tuesday most of the Immediate staff were out of the office at a company event, so the office was extremely quiet, however, some of the staff in the branded content department were in the process of launching the newly designed RSPB website. In light of this, my task for the day was to check through all of the newly launched web pages to check for any errors in photos or links etc. Although this job was quite a tedious job, the staff were so thankful for me doing it at the end of the day that it made it worthwhile. Naturally, the process of launching a new website is massive, so they found it extremely useful to have a fresh set of eyes checking over the pages.

When everybody came back on Wednesday, Will (the design director in branded content) tasked me with more work for the Greater Anglia train magazine. I think they had been impressed by my work on it on Monday so they decided to give me 2 double page spreads, and then another 2 double page spreads on Thursday.

Bristol is a city that I have been to a few times but never actually been given a chance to explore. So this week was also the perfect opportunity to get to know Bristol because I know that there is a big design industry here. I loved the fact the city had so many individual shops and restuarants/cafes and I found that it was filled with so much culture and art. I thought the atmosphere across the city was very exciting and trendy, I have definetly found myself falling in love with Bristol over the past week.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Immediate. I found that I came out with such a confidence boost knowing that I was able to complete these tasks to the standard that they would and also knowing that they would be sending my work off to the client to get approved and then eventually printed is extremely exciting. I have been told that they will send me a copy of the magazine when it goes to print for me to include in my portfolio which is brilliant! Will actually said to me that the pace that I was working at is what they expect of a normal designer working there on a permanent basis which naturally was a massive compliment! When it came to leaving on Friday, they actually said that they should be thanking me for coming in because I was very helpful to them  The week has made me so much less apprehensive about graduating university, and I am very sad to be leaving Immediate. I have hopefully made some extremely useful industry contacts which I will definitely be keeping in contact with in the future.

Constellation Reflection

Today marks the day for our hand in of our Dissertation proposal. To mark the end of constellation this years, we have been asked to write a reflection on our process and feelings about this year’s constellation.

At the start of the year, the prospect of even thinking about my dissertation was something that scared the hell out of me, let alone even setting in stone my idea and writing a 4000-word plan on it. So when it came to writing my dissertation proposal its easy to say that it was a pretty daunting task that I wasn’t quite sure I was ready to undertake.

When we began term 2 and started to have meetings with our dissertation tutor, my biggest issue was that I just wasn’t sure where to start. However, once I had my first meeting with Jayne she helped me create a bigger sense of direction and I left feeling as if I could actually achieve this. I began researching and reading gradually over the second term, but I almost put off thoughts of having to actually write a dissertation proposal to nearer the end of the term.

I’d always had the idea of basing my dissertation around magazines. Editorial design is my favourite part of graphic design so it felt natural to base my dissertation around a topic that I particularly enjoyed and was passionate about. However I just never really knew how I could write 10000 words on just editorial design. The study groups in term 1 of 2nd year really helped me develop this though, I did the goddesses and monsters study groups and one of the theorists that we studied was Sigmund Freud. I did Psychology at AS level, and we also studied Freud then and because of his controversial and slightly almost uncomfortable theories, he is someone that I had definitely developed an interest in. So this when the idea of combing the two concepts came about, I wanted to look at how Freud’s theory of Castration fears applied in advertising. I was advised to focus on one magazine, so I decided to choose Vogue because it is a magazine I read consistently and of course it is one of the most famous magazines in the world. Jayne helped me developed the idea of sexual objectification, she showed me numerous amounts of theorists who have studied objectification theory. So whilst reading I developed the statement: Sexual objectification of women in fashion advertising in magazines such as Vogue.

When it came to the proposal I had no clue how to write a literature review, I had attended Martyn’s keynote lecture, re-watched Martyn’s keynote lecture and had a meeting with Jayne about it, yet I still couldn’t quite seem to get my head around it. The literature review was definitely the hardest part of the proposal by far. Maybe if we had more workshops where we actually had to write literature review examples with help from tutors maybe I would have understood it more. Because of this when it came to writing my literature review I never felt entirely comfortable writing it, and it felt like a very long stressful experience where I had constant anxiety that I wasn’t doing it right. However, upon asking around how others were writing it I was reassured that it wasn’t just me feeling this way and that we all seem to be writing it in a similar way.
To help me write the literature review I decided to collect all the quotes that I wanted to include first in a separate document and divided the quotes up and grouped them with other quotes that were on similar topics. This provided me with a bit of a structure for my literature review and helped me find it slightly easier. One thing I struggled with whilst writing my literature review was resisting the temptation to argue my point and put my opinion into it as if I were writing an essay.

I think when it comes to essay writing, it has always been something that I struggle with. Especially since when I came to university I had very little knowledge of how to even reference, so that is something that I am still developing the ability to do now, so it still makes me slightly anxious when it comes to referencing because I always have the paranoia that I haven’t done it correctly.  I think over all with the lack of confidence in my abilities to write and lit review and to reference the whole process of actually writing this dissertation proposal has been quite a stressful one and a process I haven’t really enjoyed. However, now I have done it I believe that it has set me up really well in terms of giving me more direction for my essay and I know where I want to go next.

Despite the stress of the dissertation proposal, I am still extremely interested in my topic and I really enjoyed researching and reading about the different theories behind my idea. So I am looking forward to developing this idea further and eventually writing my actual dissertation on it.

The prospect of writing my actual dissertation now doesn’t seem quite so daunting and scary now I have completed this proposal, even if it is only the proposal. It has made me realise how much is out there to write about and I kind of understand now when people say that you won’t struggle to find topics to write about, you’ll struggle because you’ll have too much. So now the proposal is finished I can conclude it has been a reassuring experience even if the journey to completing it was full of stress and confusion. I am proud that I have come this far within my university experience to the stage where I am beginning my dissertation, I am slightly scared that it has come around so fast and I dread to think how fast the next year will go. But nethertheless I am excited to see what will come and how my dissertation will develop.

Size of Wales – Client meeting and tutorial

On Tuesday 14th of March we had the opportunity to have our client come into the studio so we could discuss our progress on the brief they have given us. Annoyingly, I was not able to attend this meeting because I was ill, so instead of completely missing this opportunity I decided to email Claire and ask if I could meet with her another time so I could still gain feedback. Claire quickly responded and we arranged to meet at the Size of Wales offices in the Temple of peace on the following Monday.

I brought in three different initial concepts that I have been working on to show Claire in order to gain feedback and work out what she like’s and dislikes.

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Out of my 3 designs that I brought in, Claire was very quick to decide that she liked the simplicity and design of the outcome 1. I told her I was worried that the shape of Wales isn’t distinguishable enough in the design, but she was quick to reassure me that because it would be used for the audience that is already part of Wales they would quickly understand the intended shape.  The outcome that Claire didn’t like is outcome 3, she thought it could be confusing that the larger Wales image was placed over Europe and thought it would be more effective if it was over Africa where there projects are actually based.

The next day, I had a tutorial in university along with the rest of the students working on the Size of Wales project, with Wendy. Although the feedback that I received from Wendy was really useful to help me develop this project, I felt as if the meeting didn’t reach its full potential because some people in the group were reluctant to show everybody their own work. Whether this be because they are worried people will steal ideas or something else, I felt as if it wasn’t a very effective use of time and I could have achieved the same feedback from a individual tutorial. I personally feel that in a group tutorial, the purpose of them is to share your ideas and gain feedback from other students as well as having a discussion about every bodies work, however this did not happen today which was disappointing.

Regardless of this, Wendy gave me some good feedback about my outcomes and I will take this in consideration when further developing my concepts over the next week.

Screen printing

On Friday, we had the opportunity to do a screen printing workshop with Nigel Bowles. The workshop first started with Nigel showing us a few examples of screen printing outcomes and then he demonstrated to us how to use the screen printing machines.

We firstly had to make our own paper stencils, I chose to use imagery that I could possibly use for my Size of Wales project. Because they are focused on deforestation, I decided to use imagery of trees. I drew out two different stencils for these imagery, this is so I could create two different layers of colour on the images.

We then began the process of screen printing, we firstly taped our base stencil to the printing board, which has a piece of mesh attached to let the paint through the board onto the paper.  We had to mix our paint, for my trees I chose a lightish green colour, and then we put a line of paint at the top of the screen printing board. Then using the squeegee we pulled the paint across the board so it would transfer onto the paper where the stencil had been cut out. I managed to create 6 sheets of prints using this paint, I left this first print to dry over the weekend and came back on Monday morning to print the second layer of paint onto the design.

Overall, I really enjoyed doing this screen printing workshop. I enjoyed actually creating a physical print and doing something creative as an alternative to always creating my outcomes on my laptops. It will definitely be a process that I use in my work in the future as I loved the effect that it created.

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Persuasion – Size of Wales

Today we were allocated our live brief that we will be working on for the duration of this Persuasion project. We have previously been given 9 different briefs to read through and today we all chose which brief we wanted to work on. The brief that I was allocated to is for a charity called Size of Wales.

The first stage of this project is to create our own creative brief for the project to show that we can demonstrate an understanding of the brief and what is expected of us.

Client / Client contact information:
Claire Raisin
claireraisin@sizeofwales.org.uk

Project: 
“Size of Wales: sustaining an area of tropical forest the size of Wales.”

Prepared by:
Emily Lawrie, 07880363064, emilylawrie19@hotmail.co.uk

  1. Background / Overview:

Size of Wales is a charity based in Wales that are dedicated to educating people on the topic of climate change, they also try and encourage people to take positive actions so they too can help tackle climate change. They want to give people clear and concise facts and information, and make it easily accesable to all.

  1. Objective. What is the goal of the campaign?

Size of Wales want infographics that will clearly communicate the facts and figures they have provided us with. They want these infographics to be used on displays and presentations in order to support the team in giving people acess to this information. There is also a potential for these infographics to be used on social media channels so must be adaptable.

  1. Target audience: who are we talking to?

They want the infographics to be mainly aimed at the adult corporate audience. However we should think about how the word corporate is used, like a corportation is a supermarket so if the infographics were used there it would cover a range of demographics such as students as well.

  1. What’s the most important thing to say or show?

The most important thing to do is to find a way to cleary communicate these facts and statistics in a way that will make people want to invest and help tackle climate change, and also to easily educate them.

 

 

Persuasion briefing

Today, we were back in subject, and we had a lecture and a workshop with Wendy to introduce us to our new project, Persuasion.

We began by looking at what persuasion is, and how it is used in design. Persuasion attempts to influence people’s beliefs, attitudes, intentions, motivations or behaviours in relation to an event, idea, object, or other person. Persuasive communication achieves five things: stimulation, convincing, call to action, increasing consideration and tolerance for alternative perspectives. As we can see from the history of design, graphic design can be used as a influential tool for good and for bad, this can be seen in war propaganda or political promotion. I think this reason is one of the most significant reasons as to why I chose Graphic design as my career path. I love the idea that my work can be used to influence a group of people. Of course there’s the saying ‘with great power comes great responsibility’ and I believe that this applies to all Graphic designers. We have to be mindful of what we are persuading people to do, and I know as a designer that I want to be seen to be persuading for the greater good, not for bad reasons. In order to do this we need to be mindful of who our clients are and what message they want the design to communicate.

Half day project.

Leading on from Wendy’s presentation, we got ourselves into pairs and were given a pair of words. In our pairs, we were given the task of exploring the meanings of these words using type, image and composition. I worked with Abbie, and we were given the words monologue and dialogue. We began this project by researching the definitions of our words.

Monologue
A long speech by one actor in a play or film, or as part of a theatrical or broadcast programme.
A long, tedious speech by one person during a conversation.

Dialogue
A conversation between two or more people as a feature of a book, play, or film.
Take part in a conversation or discussion to resolve a problem.

Typographic

Wendy workshop

We condensed the word monologue in this piece to represent how a monologue is one person talking without interruption.

Wendy workshop2

This piece represents how in a dialogue is could be one or more people talking in a conversation or a discussion. This could be interrupting as well as back and forth talking.

Image

Wendy workshop3

In this piece we used imagery of Donald Trump to represent a monologue. This is because at his rallies he gives long monologues to promote his beliefs and his actions.

Wendy workshop4

This piece of imagery represents a dialogue between two people within a conversation.

Physical

For our physical outcome, we decided to act out what a monologue or dialogue would be. A monologue would be one of us talking at the other person in a long tedious speech. A dialogue would be the two of us having a conversation.

Significance of Information – Reflection

 

I choose Significance of Information as my second term field project because I wanted to develop on my portfolio work and I knew that the tutor, David Wrenne, would allow me to do this within field. I also knew that David was a tutor I always enjoy working with, and based on my experience within field last year being not so great, I wanted to make sure that I utilised my experience with field this year and ensure that it was as helpful and productive as possible. I am extremely happy that I took this approach to picking this field group because I have throughly enjoyed these 6 weeks and I believe that it has been my favourite field project that I have studied on. I have really enjoyed experimenting and learning about various ways to present information that isn’t just the same old bland pie or line chart. Also I really enjoyed learning about iconography and I definitely will be referencing back to all these techniques I have learnt in my work in the future.

What I firstly liked about getting our brief for the outcome for this project is the fact that it was so open and you could tailor it to be an outcome that is personal to you. When coming up with the initial ideas for the topic I was going to base my outcome on I was originally thinking about doing something to do with Animal rights, however when I was looking at what was trending on Twitter during that period of time, I found an article entitled “how to protest”. I liked the fact that this topic was so relevant to the current situation.

My idea was to create a ‘starter pack’ on how to protest. I wanted to particularly focus in on peaceful protesting because I did not want to be seen to be advocating violent protests, so a lot of the information I gained from my research was based on facts and statistics about peaceful protests. I thought this was relevant to my subject because I could make a piece of editorial containing this information, as well as exploring other ways to present information in this pack. So I wanted a magazine/booklet (which I particularly enjoy creating) as well as other different formats within the pack.

What I found difficult within this project was that because I was effectively setting myself a brief, I really struggled to actually design this pack to a standard that I was happy to within the time constraints. Normally with in a brief it kind of gives you an idea as to what the client is looking for, however because it was for me at times I didn’t really know what I was looking for in terms of design. Therefor if I were to do this project again, I would physically write myself a brief for the project so I could have something to refer back to and pull me back in, because with the project being so open to what you want to do, my mind was running all over the places with different idea’s of design and things I could do.

Overall, I am happy with my outcome, however it’ll definitely be something I work on more before the end of the year because currently I do not feel like it is finished to a standard that I am happy with. I would love to be able to get this project finished and printed out professionally because I am personally very proud of the concept behind it, however I feel that I could definitely do more with it given the time.