In the last couple of days of this project, I took my work to Anna once again, and she gave me a lot to think about. The two complete designs that I’d designed for the hard back and paper back covers, while good, where also very busy. Anna suggested that I take the designs back to a more basic style, focusing on the fish as a more central feature and taking the background down to a more simple design. While I found this hard to hear, due to the amount of work that I had put into the two designs, I agreed to give it ago and recreate my designs with a simplified look. Sometimes the time that you spend on a piece doesn’t guarantee a better piece, and at the end of the day, producing more versions of the design and of the cover, gives a professional finish as it offers a great deal of choice for a client.
The two redesigns that I came up with striped the cover back to the basics, the foot prints and the circle of fish that took the most important focus:
These more pure designs are quite strong, and I feel that they where definitely worth exploring, giving a client options and not taking the last minute criticism harshly is important in professional practice.
Both pieces have corresponding QR links to the gif animations of the fish on each design, much the same as the previous two:
After getting advice from the graphics department up stairs, I set about putting text onto my covers; working out the type faces and the text layout of the book. My graphics consult advised me to change the files back over to illustrator, make sure not to use too many type faces and to double check all my measurements/bleed lines, so that I could ensure a clean print when it was all finished.
Having worked out my text layouts, I took my piece back up to graphics and gathered a second opinion from a graphics student, Christina, whom I’ve known from the previous year, and had her check over my decisions. The chains she suggested involved moving around a couple of the quotes and rearranging some of the text o the cover so that it was properly lined up.
I’m quite happy with the outcome from this, and have found the input of the graphics department really helpful, as it’s not an area that I’ve done much work in and I definitely needed a more experienced eye to check over my work. Making use of the other departments in the school is invaluable, coming from a very traditional media background, tech and graphics are often the aspects of illustration that I am least confident in; making the importance of department swapping really important when doing projects in this field.
Both the designs feature QR code links to the corresponding gif animations that complete them:
Having become more confidant with both Illustrator and Photoshop, frame animation and the processes involved in creating a QR code link; it’s become much easier and quicker to put together this piece. Through a lot of trial and error, I learned that a lot of what I was doing was over complicated and could be simplified to be a much quicker process.
Having worked all this out, I finally came to finish the first version of the cover, complete with the Gif:
I took this piece around my fellow students in studio initially, and this gave me some good feed back, the main focus being that I slowed down the the fish and changed their movement a little, making it much smoother.
I then took to into a crit with my tutor Anna, who pointed out a major flaw in my design; gold ink is not cheap to print with and also tends to loose it’s colour slightly in print. In addition, the gold had a tendency to swallow the fish slightly. While I appreciated the input, I felt that the gold was a really cool aspect of the design and didn’t want to give up on it completely. So instead I decided that I would create another version of the cover, one that would be intended to be for a paper back version; one that would cost less to print.
After some reconsideration of my colour pallet, I decided to go with a more natural but hyperbolic colour scheme:
Changing from gold to green certainly makes the fish stand out much better and I do love how the high contrast of colours in the piece. From this point, I felt that the next step was to add in text and consider the full extent of the design, moving on to create a full cover complete with spine and back cover. This would be the next logical step in my project.