All posts tagged graphic design

  • 5 (+1): Valentine’s day cards

    If some how you managed to missed the absolute barrage of my posting this on various social media forms, here it is: my second annual Valentine’s Day Cards set!

    To all the lovers out there…

    You sideline casanovas, you tentative temptresses—you! It’s time to choose the special someones from the slowly cooling buffet of your friends to pile on the plate of your affections. And what a better way to let ‘em know how you feel with these delectable Valentine’s Day cards?


    and my personal favorite….

    (printable download)

    The back story behind this is that I kept coming up with awesome restaurant names (vegetarian Chinese place called Bok Joy….a Vietnamese sandwich shop called Banh Mi & You…). Logically, I was thinking about making little doodles of what these restaurants would look like to share, but then realized that I could easily come up with more and make a set of Valentine’s Day cards like I did last year! Again, Matt helped me and Igor provided moral support & harassment. Thanks fellas!


  • I just had to show you this.

    Beautiful. $3 in the library used book store.

  • YMS website

    Did you want to see the end of this project? VoilàMy first wordpress website for an outside party (not for myself and not for class). (Visit the website here).


    I was so thrilled to work on this project with just a wonderful, wonderful foundation. They were all so kind and sincerely enthusiastic about their cause. And why shouldn’t they be? It’s pretty amazing.

    The design for this website is inspired by the logo (which, in turn, was inspired by the project). So I wanted it to pull off of the colors and feel of the logo, the urban grittiness of it. Youthful and exciting, but still clean and easy to navigate. Successful? Those are things you’d have to judge. I’m kind of bias.

    Not to say it was all roses and sunshine. Web development is roll-your-sleeves-up and make-a-pot-of-coffee kind of stuff. Or at least it was for me. The night before it was due, my unbelievably generous friend Carissa stayed up with me and sent me screen shoots of what the website looked like a PC (specifically the most evil browser of all: Internet Explorer). Back and forth over skype for hours. Quite luckily she is in China so while it was 4:30 in the morning for me, it was only the early evening for her. Princess C is truly a great friend. So many occasions where she has swooped in to help me out of precarious predicaments. Thank you.

    Here are some things I learned:

    01. Internet Explorer is hands down the most terrible browser. When all these neat advancements are taking place in web development, there’s always a footnote: “This is not possible in IE” or “You have to do make an ‘ifIE’ exception.” HATE. As my friend Kyle so-aptly put it: “The only people who use IE are old people in libraries.”

    02. CSS3 is the bees knees

    03. Keeping the original code is essential. When you have horribly manged your website there’s nothing better than just deleting all the code you added and reinstating the original code. You probably just need to add a div anyway.

    04. Avoid absolute positioning like the plague..

    05. I love a good challenge.

  • Graphic design equations

    This is the only math that makes sense to me.

    Like them? I’ve been thinking about the amazing graphic design pieces submitted in the recent ADCD Student competition (Go UW!). Don’t stop challenging yourself. Don’t stop making it better. Everything can be wonderful if you make it so.

  • Some graphic design

    Since I’m not so busy this semester I feel like better all of the time. Like happy, well-rested, more creative, and at ease.  Sure, I’m supposed to be making life changing decisions right now that I’ve been putting off–but that will be for next week.

    Here’s what I’ve been working on for work and school:

    Poster for the CAC

    Poster for Gallery 234

    Poster for Gallery 234, collaboration with Evan.

    Online invitation for Computer Graphics. Made completely with HTML! I’m so proud!

  • Come rain or shine…

    Very excited to have photos of my cd packaging that I turned in to ADCD. I didn’t do as much as I wanted to, which is a little sad. But I was also very happy to take a break.

    concept: I created a compilation CD that can be played whether you’re having a good day or a bad day, but not matter what I hope that my CD can help you have a better day. The songs that I chose are all similar, even if they evoke different emotions. The songs  all have to do with either the time of the day, or weather imagery to relate to my packaging.

    The packaging is double sided, one side for a “rain day” and one side for a “sunny day.” The package opens from the sides to make a cloud. The booklet I created for my CD includes a short blurb about the concept and the tracks listed as times of the day. On the reverse side are scene from a “good” and “bad” day, which I image the cloud CD packaging looking nice above. The CD itself, of course, looks like either a bright yellow sun or overcast, depending on which side you’re holding the package from.

    NOTE: My actually CD is light-scribed with the swirl-line pattern as well. Unfortunately, I can’t take a good picture of something so shiny. There is also a clear plastic slip that goes around the CD which is not included in the photos.

    ^ both sides of the CD

    ^ Close up of rainy day

    ^Sunny day over booklet

    ^Inside of booklet

    One of the other graphic design students said that black backgrounds are going out of style and look outdated. She said all new portfolios are being done with a white backdrop.  I feel like good contrast doesn’t really go out of style. Any designers out there—What are your thoughts? I know The Dieline has white backgrounds…

    Ps. I made the swirls myself. I just want to mention it because it took SO LONG! :)

  • Design Final: Brew Hive

    Some of you might be  wondering what kind of project could possibly take a human being 42 hours during one weekend (not including the other several hours we worked on it before this weekend) to make. Well, I ask myself that very same question.

    Our final project was to make a design pieces for a brewery: business identity (4), magazine ad, bar glasses, beer labels, 6-pack, and three “extras.”

    I worked on this project with Ben Marshall & Shane Milner. And, although they said that I was the queen bee and that they were merely drones, I thought we worked well together despite our different tastes.

    Concept: Based on research about the history of beer, specifically mead, Shane found out that honey had been used in the past during the fermentation process (instead of yeast?) to create beer. Honey, depending on which flowers are pollinated can sometimes be toxic. We used this idea of toxic honey and the history of making honey-brews to to create a brewing company that specializes in honey beers, called “Brew Hive.”

    Here is the final result (set up for critique):

    The two brews we made were called the “Bumbler” and the “Belladonna.” The Bumbler plays off the idea of bumble bee and bumbling after you become intoxicated. The idea was that the beer bumbled into a honeycomb and became intoxicated by the honey made from the headbane flowers. The Belladonna, another flower used to make toxic honey features a beautiful lady enticing you to drink.  Shane did the illustrations, I did the typography, Ben did the framework.

    We decided to only do packaging for the Bumbler, and the Belladonna was just there to explain our concept further. The packaging features further information about the specific brew, and the bottom has more information about the concept and history of our company.

    Ben did designed the template, I placed the graphics and did the side content, Shane did the content on the bottom of the box.

    Our business identity has to do with bee communication. The letterhead features a stylized version of the waggle dance, which is how bees tell each other where flowers are in relation to the sun. Here, the center point is our logo, or the “hive” and the waggle dance leads the view to the flowers, on the edge of the design. The business card repeats this idea with the “bee” going from the flower to the information about the person. Our envelope has a re-worked hexagonal pattern on the inside to represent the hive, which the two communication pieces come from.

    The type on our logo and the design on the letterhead are hand drawn (by myself), the border was created by Ben.

    Our extras: dartboard, beer snacks, and coasters

    Our extras had to do with community (drinking with others) as well as our previous concept. The dartboard is a promotional piece that could be given to bars or our customers. It’s a game that can be played with multiple people and we also  liked the idea of the dart being bee-like since it had a stinger.

    Our food packaging is marketed as an “antidote” to the the hangover our beer might cause. It’s banana chips because the potassium and magnesium in bananas are supposed to “cure” a hangover and cashews because they’re delicious :). We saw this as being a series that can be marketed independently from the beer if necessary. It’s packaged in a slightly larger quantity for sharing.

    Our coasters come in a set with pieces the lock together to form a complete image, but are visually appealing on their own. Again, to tie in the idea of drinking with friends.

    Ben designed the food packaging, dartboard and darts. Shane did the coasters.

    Finally, our magazine ad was a call to action. Drink our beer. It worked off our research that honey beers are supposed to cause a pretty bad hangover—but don’t worry, you can eat our snacks to get better!

    I did the ad…not the best, I know. It was one of the last things we worked on.


  • Englishing + Designing

    Where being and English major and designer collide: the book cover.

    Carissa showed me Alexander Budnitz‘s very neat book cover archive. I insist you go there and relish some good design and some good books.

    Isn’t there just something about old books that is intoxicatingly beautiful?

    This one is by Paul Rand!

    Budnitz is the graphic designer for MIT, isn’t that neat too?

  • Hardest button to button

    Me at 4:25 am this morning after finally finishing my button packaging.

    Oh the life of graphic design. I assure you, I worked really hard on this project from when it was assigned until I finished it last night despite the last minute-ness. I toyed with all sorts of ideas, arranged buttons, made mock-ups, and just never ended up happy. Out of all my ideas, I liked this one the best and thought it was the most reasonable for numerous reasons. However, there is room for improvement. I’ll consider telling you more about it later after sleeping.

    In other news, so tomorrow will be my first post for my English class that I briefly mentioned earlier. For this assignment we are exploring how new media affects story telling and how we can adapt to these changes. For my project, I will be re-designing my professional website, something you might remember I endeavored to do at during the summer. Not having any knowledge of web design makes web designing hard, I find.

    So expect some academic posts. We will be using a blog to create a webliography where we will write about a minimum of 7 different sources (popular press, policy briefs, and primary documents) which, of course help us with our final project.  Excited?

    Ps. During the ENTIRE project, I had the White Stripes song stuck in my head, but just the phrase “button to button” and I wasn’t sure if I had just imagined it. I’m relieved to find that it actually exists.

  • Still here!

    Carissa came to visit yesterday and I’ve been bustling around with my math class and thinking about graduate school. Sorry.

    Look at some of the cute souvenirs she got me.

    {Left: cute chicken notebook, handmade!; Right: Magnets}

    And she also picked up some graphic design magazines for me. This one had some neat ads.

    Here are some neat Alka Seltzer ads. {click to enlarge}

    And look at this novel idea of a necklace. I love how this person looked at something simple in a new way.