Brief and Mood boards – Reflection

Working for yourself is the hardest job anyone will ever do! Don’t let anyone tell you different! When your woking for someone else you can be cut throat and truthful. While working for yourself you get to deal with both your angel which tells you you are good enough, you did really great on your presentation. While you devil tries to knock you down a bit, making you stutter and say um every two seconds. So how can you even start to reflect on yourself when you have two opposite sides fighting each other.

The benefit of creating a brief is that it allows you to distill all your information down onto one page. Especially getting it critiqued and had a few questions thrown at me made we reassess a few aspects I had on my brief which was good.  I also felt like collecting all my past inspirations into an area allowed for me to see and overall trend in my mood boards however I am still unsure if it actually reflects who I am as a designer. But I have many years to figure that out.


Magazine Survey

Having browsed through many magazines it was really interesting to take the time to break down what makes them unique. Having each group in charge of a certain section allowed us to really dive in and get a better understand on the components of a magazine.

Within out section we focused on imagery, graphic devices, colour, drop caps, personality. The biggest take away message from our group is there are many different elements that allow a magazine to showcase their attitudes, authority and feelings just through these different graphic elements. 

Other things I learnt from the different presentations, magazines use more that 4 type hierarchies on a spread. Its the little added details that make them special and typography can be a big game changer for the overall feel of a magazine.

Overall myself and Heather’s presentation covered a lot of ground in the time that we were given in class to put it together. I would give us a 4/5 on this project.


First Nations Project: T O T E M – with Emily and Brynn


Screen Shot 2018-03-12 at 4.56.13 PMTeam Reflection:

For the Reconciliation Project we worked as a team to create an engaging experience that would create dialogue around reconciliation. After the blanket exercise, the field trip to the Royal Museum of BC, and online research, we decided to create an augmented reality app that would engage tourists and non-Indigenous people in dialogue about Indigenous experiences. Together, we took a tour through the MOA and became inspired by the local art and history of the area. This influence can be seen throughout our app within the design and engagement pieces.

The app will work to spark curiosity and engage our audience with the visual historical facts that existed in BC prior to colonization in real-time augmented reality. Although we only created prototypes of our app for the presentation, we can see the potential to flesh out this project further in the future, expanding to light installations and a print campaign to engage a larger community. The app could be onsite at local events to create awareness. While live demos and shows could be promoted using the app.

My Experience:

Starting off the project I was really hesitant, I didn’t want to be culturally insensitive or force a stereotype that already existed. However, being able to talk to the Indigenous Documentary group gave me a different perspective that allowed me to think more open-mindedly toward the project. I decided to team up with Emily and Brynn as they both had an idea to create engagement piece that would create discussion around Reconciliation. All our different perspective allowed us to create a dynamic project that we can see further developing over the summer.

After research and collaborating, my main contribution to the project was working on the simplistic line drawings that were present throughout the app. It was a struggle at first but I’m really happy how this project turned out. I think Brynn and Emily took on larger workloads because I was a lot slower than anticipated (but learned a lot from them along the way!). Emily and Brynn definitely deserve a 10/10 on the project but I’m happy to take an 8/10 on this one.


Resume. Well that was fun…

It is actually really hard writing your own resume. I guess that is why you can actually get a job as a resume writer! Crazy.

I ended up going through a lot of different configurations before I came up with a final design for Camp Pacific. My first attempt, I was trying to focus on the concept. I thought it would be smart to make it look like an old passport so it kind of looks like a form that needs to be filled out. However, as you can see below, having the boxes created weird spaces that I couldn’t figure out how to configure.

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For my next design, I decided to make the lay out interesting and tried to make weird grids line up. However, I couldn’t get the dates to line up in a way that looked functional, which is why they are in a pile at the bottom. There were also way too many type faces, what was I thinking?! It started to become more complicated than a cohesive design.

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For my final attempt, with a lot of help from classmates, I made sure everything was legible and cohesive throughout the design. I got rid of the vertical elements and limited the number of fonts I had. I also made sure that the elements I wanted to be focused on were put into a better form of hierarchy. Overall, the design is better but the design lacks pizzazz and oomph that I think a real designer would bring to their resume. I was also so focused on the design that I think the written part is rather lacking. 7/10

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For my manifesto, I read a lot of the recommended texts as well as reflected on a few older pieces of work (bibliography below). Although all of them had a different approach, a lot of them had similar threads, such as, creating impactful work, learn to collaborate with others and be willing to teach. For my manifesto, I wanted to incorporate theses ideas and also focus on the idea that we need to seek not just understand our surroundings but, what is happening in our world and our universe.


For my first few attempts, I was trying to use the metaphor of mother nature and add in elements of plants, rocks and water (below left). However, I realized that this then focus on what is happening in nature and not necessarily the whole design world. My second attempt (below right) tried to bring in the idea of seeing other sides so I thought I could use the metaphor of a telescope and the view being bounced off a different side, represented by an angle. But, the poster seemed to lack a cohesive feel.


For my final design, I decided to incorporate the consolations, conveying a feeling of vastness within our universe. The figures at the bottom left are reflecting a teacher showing the stars and consolations to a group of pupils. The parts about the poster which I can’t tell if it totally works is the heavy set of the figures. Although I wanted so suggest solidity, they might be too heavy for the design and make it fell a bit off balance. But overall, I am happy with the design.                                                    8/10


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Baker, Harriet. 10 Game Changing Art Manifestos, Royal Academy of Arts, pub April 10, 2015. Retrieved Jan 8, 2018 from

Berger, John. Ways of Seeing. London, Penguin Classics, 1972

Bierut, Michael. Michael Bierut at 2015 Aiga Design Conference:What I’ve Learned. Retrieved Jan 8, 2018 from

Chochinov, Allan. 1000 Words: A Manifesto for Sustainability in Design, April 06, 2007. Retrieved Jan 8, 2018 from

Garland, Ken. First and Last, Retrieved Jan 9, 2018 from 1Manifesto

Canadian Graphic Designers: Heather Cooper


heather cooper

Heather Cooper

Women artists are hard to find information on. Perhaps, it’s because they have to work hard to prove their worth in a male dominated industry, where others are happy to take the credit, especially, in the early years. This lack of information makes researching women hard. However, after looking, I find that articles on women are often, well rounded, funny and thought-provoking, or perhaps it’s Jef Catapang, the writer of an article on Heather Cooper, the artist that I want to talk about*.

Heather Cooper, is one of Canada’s unknown gems. Starting as an artist in the design world of Toronto she quickly moved up the ranks to start a design firm. In the 60s she started Burns Cooper with partner, Robert Cooper. Robert Burns was an eccentric man who loved doing all the talking while Cooper did the work. They were great partners and ended up expanding their business to include Alan Fleming, Jim Donohue, Bill Marshall and Ann Kay over the many years.

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They oversaw recreating and establishing many brands over the years such as, Roots, E.D Smith, Northern Telecom and Canada Post just to name a few. Their business was booming until the company had to liquidate. But Heather persevered through and become a freelancer out of her home. She has established herself as a well-known artist that lives in the woods of Ontario. She also has an art gallery and is still involved with creating murals and other public works.



You can see more of her work here:

*The article I referenced on Heather Cooper by Jef Catapang

Postmoderist: Alan Fletcher


alan fletcher

“Design is not a thing you do, it’s a way of life” – Alan Fletcher

Most known for being one of the founders of Pentagram in the 1970s and an influential British designer. Fletcher brings a unique style with wit and simplicity within his work. Fletcher traveled extensively both for school and worldwide gaining a great understanding of graphic design in both Europe and America. Which has helped him extensively in his career to create his own style.

Fletcher helped create, Pentagram, which focused on branding and identity. Which went on to create lasting identities for companies such as Reuters and Victoria and Albert Museum. His ideas are based around simplifying everything to its simplest forms. Which can be seen in his design for the Institute of Director.


1992, he ended his career with Pentagram and opened his own studio in Notting Hill, London. This enabled him to work on projects that he wanted to do instead of focusing on what’s best for the company.  Allowing his body of work expanded into collage, illustration and page layouts. Bringing out his more exploratory and playful styles. alan