Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Ideas for an end product

As an illustrator it is important to find a compatible context which is suitable for the topic. In this case I needed to figure out the context for the topic of 'endangered species' which would help me communicate in the best form possible. I have decided to step away from animation which I was leaning towards in my last project. This is due to the fact I would need to learn a whole new set of skills within a couple of months, and as I want my best work included in my final major project of university I felt that it was important to develop on skills I already have rather than learn new ones.

Therefore, I would still like to incorporate campaign in my work and making them more effective by enhancing my traditional and digital skills. The final product I would like to create is a campaign brochure as I feel it would allow me to explore the issues and causes of endangered species in the most effective way and hopefully begin to make a change. This will require research into brochure design and the content included, which I will do along side creating concepts through illustration.

Monday, 9 February 2015

FMP Development

Having decided on looking into endangered species for my final major project for University I feel that I have made a positive progression.

The main focus at the moment is on tigers in the wild and how the species is threatened due to a number of issues such as habitat loss and poaching caused by deforestation and the illegal wildlife trade. Therefore I have begun to create several ideas depicting how deforestation is threatening tiger species.

Here are my illustrations including process:

Idea 1: 

Watercolour and ink illustration portraying both sides of the story; a healthy tiger next to the destruction of deforestation which will be it's fate if nothing is done to prevent it.

Idea 1

Having completed the illustration, I feel that it is somehow quite disjointed and the two halves do not compliment each other. Perhaps if the tones refelcted each other more and the cut down trees formed the stripes of the tiger so that the image would connect as a whole. Even so, the fact the illustration is very literal means it is self explanatory which is important for conveying a message to the audience with instant impact.

Idea 2:

Watercolour and ink illustration of a close up tiger's eye filled with a scene of deforestation.

Idea 2

This illustration is intended for the audience to see how deforestation has a threatening impact from a tiger's point of view to create empathy. The scene is literally a reflection of what is seen by the tiger as excavators destroy its home. 

Inspiration for these illustrations came from a video posted by the WWF:

This video demonstrates how tigers could be here one day and gone the next. Without anyone stopping deforestation, habitat loss will eventually lead to tiger species becoming extinct. Through illustration, I aim to raise awareness about the issue and portray the truth behind the issue. 

Future development: 

So far I feel my illustrations are heading in the right direction although there is still much room for improvement and many more ideas. These illustrations could then be applied to a campaign brochure informing an 18-30 audience. The age category I have chosen is due to the fact that adults have the power to change, they can donate money or even be inspired to help conservation. I aim for my illustrations to not only raise awareness but inspire people who also want to and can make a change. 

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Endangered Species: Sumatran Tiger

After brainstorming for my final major project, I decided to focus on the theme of endangered species. As an extension of my animal right theme, this will allow me to explore a wider variety of endangered species globally, researching the issues and causes behind each animal I choose.

To begin with, I chose to focus on the Sumatran Tiger as it is noted as critically endangered by the World Wildlife Fund. With a bit of research I found out that deforestation is one of the main causes for the habitat loss of these beautiful creatures. Therefore, I wanted to create a quick experiment using media, materials and techniques to portray this sense of deforestation.

In these photos you can see the process of making the piece. Initially, I tore the top layer of cardboard to reveal the corrugated texture. The aim here was to recreate a similar effect to deforestation by destroying the background just as forests are destroyed in Indonesia, the Sumatran tigers home. Once I had completed this effect enough, I chose to use mixed media of oil pastel and charcoal which enabled me to create bold line and strong, vivid color.

Overall, I think this technique has worked effectively although the drawing of the tiger could be in better proportion. However, the way the cardboard was torn reflects the deforestation well and similar methods could be used to reflect other issues and species.

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Final Major Project

Brainstorming Ideas for FMP

SO the time has come to decide on a final major project for my final year of University, it is crazy how time flies!

I left my project on a note of badger culling before Christmas, but now is the time to extend on this animal rights theme and really get to grips with more global issues. Therefore I have opted to move away from badgers and more forward into the world of endangered species. Whilst a broad topic, my aim will be to produce a collection of illustrations which convey what is happening around the world which cause many species to become threatened. This may be portrayed through narrative to demonstrate the truth behind the matter in a similar way Sue Coe has done in her work.

As part of my initial research I will explore several animal welfare organisations such as the WWF to gain statistics and information about which species are endangered and the main issues concerned with each particular threatened animal.

Monday, 15 December 2014

Animated Adshel Advertising Experiment

To gain a better perspective of how the animated campaign advertisement would appear in context, I did a mock up of my latest ad as adshel advertising. 

The image is from a secondary source: http://blog.smithdesignagency.co.uk/portfolio/belfast-central-mission-belfast-charity/

As the original gif file could not be stretched to the size of the Adshel dimensions, I chose to solve this issue by placing static text above and below the moving advertisement. This allows the viewer to understand the animation but also enables them to gain more information through the use of a QR code which directs them to the RSPCA website appealing against badger culling.

As an experiment I believe this has been the most successful in conveying a message against badger culling. It is the most informative for the viewer and provides a link to more information. The animation turned out to be quite slow although I think this is due to creating the gif in Photoshop and the quantity of frames being too large. Finding a more suitable program should raise the quality of the advertisement and allow me to experiment further with even longer ad campaigns and a smoother, refined result.

Animated Ad Campaign Test

With a grand total of 298 frames (!) here is my latest animated badger culling ad campaign. Although it doesn't look much, a lot of technical skills went into this.

Created in Photoshop and saved as a low resolution gif.

Due to the number of frames, I was unable to save the file at a higher resolution. Therefore, I will need to find a program which can take much larger files and perhaps a quicker way to make the animation.

Even so, I do think that animation has a positive effect on the ad campaigns by simply keeping the viewer interested until the end. Movement has a greater ability to capture the eye, and with stronger imagery and colour the ad could become very effective.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Development of Gif Animations for Campaign Advertising

After my initial experiment with Gifs in an earlier post (see here) I decided to explore this further in Photoshop as opposed to using an online generator to create my gifs:

I chose to use  a simple slogan 'stop the cull' which I have previously included in previous campaign poster designs about badger culling. Keeping the font and colours the same for simplicity works well and gets straight to the point. 

As I felt the previous gif wasn't smooth as an animation, I wanted to break the text down so it flowed better.

To create this animation, I saved each frame at different points adding one letter per frame giving the illusion that the text is being written. In total 11 frames were used to make this gif.

The same technique in Photoshop was used here though I added more frames (71 in total!) by including some experimental artwork that I had created. Changing the opacity allows a smooth transition into the next image. 

Photoshop screenshot of frames used to create gif animation

Although this implies that it is advertising against the cull, it would not work in a realistic advertising scenario as more information needs to be included. This gif explores the techniques which may be used in the animation to portray numerous images simultaneously. 

Personally I believe these techniques have worked effectively and make the illustrations more aesthetically appealing to the audience. Movement in the animation will capture the attention of the viewer for much longer than a still illustration as the changing images make it more interesting. More professional elements could be added for an advertisement against badger culling and perhaps a narrative of the badger cull could be portrayed to demonstrate the effects of the cull and why the audience should appeal against it.