I continued working on my letters on the weekend, and did up to 4 and a half. I enjoyed doing that, but it was taking a lot of time, and the moss smelled bad. I don’t know what else to say up until the first deadline was approaching. I left the letters I had to work on at uni, while everything else was at home. I went home thinking I was gonna be able to work. I wanted to print my letters, but my typeface was offline, and the universal typeface client doesn’t work unless you do it at uni.
I had to come all the way to uni to finish my remaining 4 letters and a half. I brought my entire fucking house to uni. I drove myself here. I grabbed my dad’s camera and tripod. I took a blanket of mine of when I was a baby that I asked my mom for. I grabbed my box full of toys. I brought two bags full of toy soldiers and items and shit. I also grabbed my letters. I came to uni and worked until 4 am. I was so over it by then, I just swinged it, and was like whatever, cause I wanted to go back home. I took ugly ass pictures of my letters, and an ugly ass picture of my mat with the additional elements I wanted to include.
I headed home at 4:15 and got there an hour later, cause I don’t know where my house is at, and I’m so bad with directions not even God or Google Maps can help me. I got 2 hours of sleep, came to uni, and worked on the poster, then printed it, and tiled it.
I got a lot of feedback and chose to go with plan b whatever the fuck that was (the battlefield / battle zone). The letters looked so small that the intricate details were not shown. The background took away from the word itself as it was too busy. The lighting was not good. I could have added more depth and dimension to the word. The feedback definitely helped me a lot, and I just chose to go in another direction. A direction that’d focus more on the word, and not the overall layout.
I had no idea how to start my poster on the weekend. I had to scan my objects all over again, because last time I did it, they were all just stuck to a piece of white paper. I wanted to be able to control all of the elements I wanted to use separately. I scanned, and started working. It took a while for me to get the very first tiled poster. I stayed over on Sunday, and slept here, because I had to make my objects transparent, and then place em on a poster, and try to find a way to link that to my object.
I struggled with choosing a background / coming up with one. I decided to place my text on the receipt that I had scanned. I had to buy the particular typeface I wanted to use, so I just wrote my words on an engine that generates them as to how they’d look. I took screenshots of those demos, and made them transparent on photoshop, and dragged them over to the poster. I asked people if my poster looked good, and a lot of them liked it, at least the ones that were awake. Steffi suggested a darker background. I tried that, but I didn’t like it, as I had made it way too dark.
I printed them on A3, and tiled them. I had some errors after taping them, as I had not cut them properly, that’s why I printed a copy, just in case. I was satisfied, and then slept. At uni. Which was a pain. I got a lot of positive feedback that I had written down.
7 & 8. Hamda & Nouf just said my poster was “boring” and / or gave them a headache
Working on my final poster took less time. I just took whatever advice I thought made sense, and applied it onto my poster. I adjusted the background and made it darker. I controlled the color balance of the candle, and made it more yellow. Made the candle and the wrap go out of frame. I had to do the receipt all over again, as I had previously saved it as a png. I did it again, and erased parts of some of the letters that were on the curve. Fixed the flower petals, and spread em out. I loved my final poster, and thought it articulated my journey, especially when you get closer to read the information.
I started working on my idea. I wanted to approach this the way Law recommended, by melting toy soldiers, and try to fit them within my letters. I didn’t have a molds of my letters, therefore, I just chose to do it on paper, and somehow edit it later. I tried to melt the additional items that came with the bag of soldiers.
I tried to melt sticks by holding them on top of the fire, and as soon as they’d melt, I tried to place them on the i, but that didn’t work. It burnt tiny bits of the paper off. I tried to melt plastic in a pot, but that did not fully melt either, and instead got stuck to the pot. I scratched that idea, and went with my backup plan. After looking up how to melt plastic videos, I decided to shove them into the oven. I placed them on a tray with tracing paper, so that they wouldn’t melt onto the tray.
It did not work. I removed the paper off of the other side of the melted plastic, and it was the green I wanted, however, not in the form I wanted it to be. So I just chose to glue the soldiers on the letter instead. I also tried cutting up the extra stuff that came in, into small pieces to fit them inside the letters.
I showed this to Mahmood and Law, and they said that I could try to work with crayons of the same color, or I could just buy moss from Mahmood’s mother’s shop #selfpromo. I did like that idea of having a camouflage-esque effect on a battlefied. I asked Kainat to visit the shop, as she had done that the day before, and gave her color samples I wanted. She found the closest ones, and I started to work on them, and made the very first letter.
What I learned this week was that experimentation is always a good way to start off with an idea, even if it’s inevitably going to turn out bad, or is bound to fail, just try it, you never know.
We had to go back and work on our posters some more. I was still so lost. I had no idea where to expand from. I felt like I was out of ideas, and was confused all at the same time. My confusion came from not able to figure out whether I should focus on the keychain by itself or the charm along with the keychain. I was also confused as to how I should design a background, all while relating it to my 100 things. I didn’t know what to put. I felt like the initial design I made on illustrator was not enabling me to grow and create a successful poster. Also after looking at people’s ideas, I got confused, because everyone else seemed to focus on sending a message / delivering a theme, and I felt like mine was more so focused on my journey, not so much a message.
My poster on the left was going to include a scanned refined drawing of a playboy bunny using a black permanent marker, which is a medium I used in my 100 things. I was going to make it so the bunny was dangling from a keychain that I was planning on making in illustrator. The quotes that I included were just things I thought of. A keychain holds the tools that can unlock the endless, referring to how keychains tie all sorts of primary objects in a spiral, the most important of those objects being keys. Keys can lock and unlock the endless; doors, boxes, lockers, etc. The second quote I got from the definition of what a tchotchke is lol. I felt like it related to what my object represented. It’s something that’s rather decorative than functional. Keychains are used as accessories or keeping things together. It doesn’t function all by itself, it relies on something else to do so.
I brought my poster to class, and most of the feedback I got was negative. Law felt that it was too flat. I could play more with depth and dimension. I could also throw in a little color. Add more of my 100 things. Law told me to get rid of the playboy bunny, and just focus on the object, rather than the accessory.
I then went and ordered 2 zaatar’s from zaatar and zeit, because I wanted to use the wrap of the zaatar, as I used it in my 100 things. I went home, and took out materials that were similar to the ones I used for the 100 things. I glued them onto the paper, and came up with this composition, that also included my a rendition of my object. I scanned it, then added type.
I included the same text from my earlier poster. I received neutral feedback. Although my poster included things from my journey, I could have tried to control the objects more, and make it more interesting, cause this just looked randomly put and organized. I learned that a lot of ideas can come from last minute inspiration. I literally spent less than 10 minutes gluing things on a piece of paper, and I thought it looked better than what I had done before, even though I spent more time on that.
The first class of week 5 we spent most of it outside our classroom looking at each other’s works for the final installation of phase 2. Law talked about how each of us presented the work, and how it relates to who we are. To each their own, as there is no right or wrong as to how you could have done phase 2.
He then told us about phase 3. I was confused at first, but that’s exactly how phase 2 started. I knew that the best way to understand this is to look back at the project brief, and read it slowly to grasp this new challenge.
By next class we had to come up with a sketch of our poster, and how things are going to be placed. I read the brief but still felt myself getting lost. What am I supposed to do with a keychain of a playboy bunny.
These are designs I came up with while playing with the brush stroke. I was going for black and white abstract paint. I don’t think it represents my idea fully, but I’m still not quite sure as to what I want.
I still am so lost. I understand that it has to be about our journey, but a lot of people have posters with witty and / or lame puns. I don’t think that’s what the poster should be about, or could it be? IDK.
I haven’t fully grasped the concept yet, and I still am struggling to come up with ideas.
The first class of this week we had to bring in sketches, and experiments based on the word of our choice. We had to experiment with only one letter, not the whole word. These were some of my experiments.
The ladybugs were glued on top of the wooden clothespins, and I took some of them off, and made them their own thing. I think this represents the word galvanize, as it describes the feeling of being galvanized. It’s about the feeling of playfulness and joy. A razor represents a calm subtle feeling; almost the opposite of galvanize. Then I glued little soldier toys on a letter, because a lot of kids, teens and adults are encouraged to go to the military. They’re pushed to that decision through excitement, even though that’s not how it should be; going into war is not just fun and games, it’s a serious matter. Then a toothbrush, which was totally random.
Then, I cut wires and glued them on a plastic which was taped on the paper as a reference. I did a crayon, which was also random, but can have meaning. Wood relates more to the scientific definition of galvanize. Galvanizing is coating zinc on iron and steel, and wood is the opposite of metal. Black clothespin have no relation whatsoever, but I just saw em as an opposition to the ladybugs and wooden clothespins.
Law liked the ladybugs piece, but he fell in love with the toy soldiers idea. As soon as I laid my work on the table, he had already made up his mind on what I should be doing for this project. He loved the idea, and I felt so encouraged to pursue it, as I didn’t think it through, and have a thorough explanation other than “war is glorified in society, and people are galvanized to make that decision”.
He just told me to play with that idea and try to work within the letter by filling it in through the melting of toy soldiers. He asked me what comes to mind when I think of toy soldiers, and I said “toy story”. He gave me a lot of amazing ideas in which I could interpret into my final product. I could tell a story using those soldiers. I could showcase dolls and teddy bears being held captive, or are tied down as hostages. Basically, I could show a fight between two clans/tribes of soldiers.
For next class, Law asked us to bring in one letter that’s a representation of the feedback we received. I used the brown colored soldiers I used previously, along with green colored ones for my letter. I melted a green crayon that was almost close to the color of the green soldiers. I melted parts of a red crayon to showcase blood.
I brought the idea with me in class, but the time was up to us, so I went and bought 11 bags full of soldiers, arsenals of weapons and cool shit, and different modes of transportation.
I then had a talk with Law and Mahmood, and they told me what ideas to keep and what to scratch out. I was so inspired by all the suggestions. They asked me to not have blood splattered, and maybe align the soldiers so that it looks like they’re fighting. They even suggested I could add in the beige soldiers that I had bought recently that are within the 11 bags. It’s my battle, as Law said. Mahmood suggested that I talk to Andi in Facilities, but I didn’t, because I’d rather just look it up lol.
I learned that I have good ideas that just need better execution. I was on the right track, as both Law and Mahmood had told me, and agreed upon what I had in mind.