Archive for February, 2011

Class Exercise 4: Welcome To The Family!

Posted in Photo Shop For Internet Graphics with tags , , on February 24, 2011 by zach-attack-shaw

For our fourth class excercise, we were to use Photoshop to make an animation. I created an animation influeneced by Avenged Sevenfold’s song “Welcome To The Family.” If you listen to the song starting at the 6 second mark (or right when singer M. Shadows starts to sing the lyric “Hey Kid…”), it should line up relatively well, at least so that the text hits perfectly as Shadows sings “Welcome To The Family.”

If anybody knows how to add music via photoshop, please let me know. I used several images of the picture below (with each one I erased a skull using the cloning tool) on top of each other to create the movement of the skulls. Then I added text to come in at different times. What do you all think?

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Build/Rebuild

Posted in Photo Shop For Internet Graphics with tags , , on February 24, 2011 by zach-attack-shaw

I found the following quote from Jeffrey Zeldman’s Designing With Web Standards, 3rd Edition (page 3) rather interesting:

“We build only to rebuild. Too often, we rebuild not to add visitor-requested features or increase usability, but merely to keep up with browsers and devices that seem determined to keep up with browsers and devices that seem determined to stay one budget-busting jump ahead of our planning and development cycles. Even on those rare occasions in which a new browser or device mercifully ;eaves our site unscathed, the so-called “backward-compatible” techniques we use to force our sites to look and behave the same way in all browsers take their toll in human and financial overhead.”

With that in mind, I wanted to play around with the imagery of “building and rebuilding” with the imagery of a blue print that Christina Wodtke and Austine Govella use to explain web creation in Information Architecture: Blueprints For The Web. Using the animation tools I learned last week (check out what I did for the class exercise) in class, I decided to create an animated video of a computer blue print being built piece by piece and then destroyed by a wrecking ball. I found an image of a computer blue print that someone created online, while the wrecking ball was in a stock image website.

 I wanted to signify through the animation the process of “building and rebuilding” that Zeldman explains in his introduction. Watch the animation and let me know what you think.

Ballerinas In Action

Posted in Photo Shop For Internet Graphics with tags , , on February 17, 2011 by zach-attack-shaw

On page 216 in Graphic Design: The New Basic (under the chapter “Time and Motion”), the notion of “Implied Motion” is discussed. “Graphic designers use numerous techniques to suggest change and movement on the printed page. Diagonal compositions evoke emotion, while rectilinear arrangements appear static. Cropping a shape can suggest motion, as does a sinuous line or a pointed, triangular shape,” the chapter explains.

After seeing the photography of the ballerinas on page 219 in the same chapter, I decided to play around with the idea of static and cropped motion. Using the cloning tool I learned last week in class, I took a single silhouette of a ballerina I found randomly online (the image of which can be seen after the jump) and created multiple silhouettes; first making three in the middle then another three at the top and bottom opposing corners. I wanted to combine the static and cropped motions to replicate as if one ballerina is in the midst of movement.

What do you think? Did it turn out well? As always, your feedback would be greatly appreciated! Continue reading

The Truly Lonely Hearts Club Band: Class Exercise 3

Posted in Photo Shop For Internet Graphics with tags , , , on February 17, 2011 by zach-attack-shaw

Here was the class exercise from the fourth Photoshop class: “Create an image that represents layering, repetition, cloning, and experimental use of color through shapes. No text allowed. Alter the color to create a color scheme based either on the color wheel or the content of your image composition. Express yourself through image only as ‘aesthetics of altered media.’ Use of appropriation is encouraged.”

So I decided to take the famous cover from The Beatles’ Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band and make them truly lonely. Using the cloning tool, I replaced the entire cast of characters behind The Beatles with the blue back ground. Then I played with the red curve of the picture. To add an extra taint of blue, I added a linear burn blending mode with a blue rectangle. And wha-la!

What do you think?

Many Wheels Of Colors

Posted in Photo Shop For Internet Graphics with tags , , on February 10, 2011 by zach-attack-shaw

I found the following from the “Colors” chapter in Graphic Design: The New Basic rather interesting:

“Colors carry different connotations in different societie. White signals virginity and purity in the West, but it is the color of death in Eastern cultures. Red, worn by brides in Japan, is considered racy and erotic in Europe and the United States. Colors go in and out of fashion, and an entire industry has emerged to guide and predict its course.” Page 71.

With that in mind, and as a chance to use the blending mode techniques discussed in chapter 11 of Photoshop CS5: Visual QuickStart Guide, I decided to alter four versions of the color wheel displayed on page 73 in Graphic Design: The New Basic into one image. In a way, I wanted to highlight how color can differ amongst cultures. The wheel on the top right corner is untouched (beside being resized). With a red circle on top of it, I used the darken blending mode for the top left corner wheel. For the bottom left wheel, I used the dissolve blending mode (at about 50% opacity) with a yellow circle on top. Finally, I used the color burn blending mode for the bottom right corner with a blue circle on top. The end result can be seen above.

 

“Not As Easy Of A Choice As You’d Think…” Class Exercise 2

Posted in Photo Shop For Internet Graphics with tags , , on February 10, 2011 by zach-attack-shaw

For our second class exercise, we were assigned to take or create two photographs with contrasting meanings and, through adjusting the transparency and layers of each photo, create/form one focus or message to the picture.

For my exercise assignment, I decided to play with the two contrasting images of fire and blue skies to represent hell vs. heaven (two of the biggest opposing images/beliefs in culture). By adding the text “Not As Easy Of A Choice As You’d Think…,” I wanted to highlight how defining a good act vs. a sin isn’t necessarily as easy to do. Today’s organized religion tends to over-preach between what is good and what is evil. Yet in reality, not everyone holds those beliefs to be true. Some say sex before marriage is an abomination, yet others do it freely. Who is to truly say who is wrong or right? Can one side truly define a sin?

However, to go even further, I also wanted to take a look at how some people take it upon themselves to do an act that they full heartedly know does harm to themselves and to their loved ones yet do it anyway. For example: drug use/addiction. Even though the drug use does considerable damage to themselves (both physically and mentally), addicts continue to use it. This is not to judge them for their use, but merely to understand their struggle. Despite knowing the harm it does to them and their loved ones, they continue to fight the temptation of fulfilling an inner urge. In the end, it’s not as much a battle between good or evil, but between Thinking of your consequences vs. Self Need. If you ask any junkie or addict, such a choice is not as easy to make.

To make this image, I took a picture of fire and layered it on top of the picture of the blue sky. I used the gradient tool to add flame edges to the top of the fire picture. Then I used the gradient tool above the sky to give it a little more whiteness. Once adding the text boxes (having each row conflict with the color), I added a little outer white shadow so that the text stood out more.

So as always, let me ask you this: what do you think? Does my picture express all that I explained above? Is it any good? Feel free to be brutally honest, and would love to hear your feedback.

 

My Frustrations With Photoshop

Posted in Photo Shop For Internet Graphics with tags , , on February 3, 2011 by zach-attack-shaw

It’s the third week of the class, and I still find myself struggling with Photoshop. I have been reading Photoshop CS5: Visual QuickStart Guide, yet I’m still not grasping even the basics. Either I don’t understand what it’s saying, or the things I understand I can’t seem to actually do while using the software. So far, my experience with Photoshop has been extremely frustrating! I can’t tell if it’s simply because it’s a difficult software to learn, or if I just don’t have enough patience. Maybe it’s both…or at least I hope it is. Nonetheless, I realize that it’s only been two classes so far (third is tonight). Maybe once I play around with it a little more in class, I’ll gain more confidence.

In the essay “Back To The Bauhaus” (featured in Graphic Design: The New Basics), Elle Lupton discusses how transparency can be a useful tool to construct thematic and or constructional relationships within art, such as conflicting roles. With this in mind, I decided to express the confusion/frustration I have been feeling as of late through the use of imagery, points and lines. I first took a plane background and using brushes created erratic lines and dots. Then, I found a picture of a rose online, and used the magic wand to cut around the flower. Then, using the masking tip we learned in the second class, I made the background I created the top layer and had it replace the inside of the rose. You can take a look at the results above (I did two versions with different colors).

The point/meaning of the message is to see the conflict between two opposing images. The flower represents calmness that I am trying to reach, while the inner lines and dots represent the confusion I actually feel. In a sense (and not to sound over emotional and what not), the inside is how I currently feel with Photoshop, while the outer flower/calmness is the appearance I am trying to maintain.

In short, does what I just explained above seen in the pictures I created? Does it even look like a flower? If you didn’t read this blog posting, would you have gotten the message? As always, your comments and critiques are very welcomed!