Newspaper Ads in an hour

I kind of fell into doing a few designs for a newspaper ad to be featured in Kirksville’s Daily Express. I was chatting with my boss about how I saw my logo for the Drug Coalition on the billobard and she mentioned she had an hour to get an advertisement designed.. So I offered to help since I was taking her time by talking. Here are the two possible black and white designs:

Latest Website Design
I recently posted this in a contest that was later cancelled. I’m begining to enjoy creating website for practice. I can mess up and learn from my mistakes while waiting for another website job.

video editing company

logo design. gecko style .
I finally got to putting the “limber” gecko into my existing gecko mathematics logo. I wanted to appeal to kids by making it look like it’s crawling around… a sense of movement in a still image.

I started out by rastorizing the ‘o’ in gecko
and cutting parts of it out to get the feel of the
gecko crawling through it.

I then did something totally different,

because it’s good try different things.
I used the gecko as an icon. I don’t like this one,
but I can’t say I didn’t try it.

My favorite. Only because the logo will be on the left
of the website so the gecko is crawling into
the webpage, rather than off the page.

Yet Another Gecko
I’ve finally created a likable gecko for the gecKo mathematics project. The previous versions are here.

I made the feet smaller and curved it’s body

Latest Projects
I recently worked on a very cool Flash project for Truman State University’s new website redesign. They wanted to have a photo slideshow on the homepage that could be dynamically created through a web form. Basically anyone can upload a photo, a caption and a link to the website/story corresponding to the headline/photo. When this form is submitted, the slideshow will automatically include the photo with caption/link

The project is here

I am by no means a programmer, but I work with another student who is. He did most of the programming and I did the Flash aspect of it. If you were to look at my Flash file you would see nothing on the “Stage” because everything was done with Actionscript, Flash’s scripting language. Strangly, Actionscript is very similar to Javascript.

Here’s a breakdown of what we had to use/implement:

  • Flash Actionscript which creates dynamic movie clips.. including code that would set a drop shadow, embed the correct font and set the placement of the text on the photo
  • A corresponding XML file that Flash pulls info from… this file also specifies the length of each slide, and how slow the fading occurs
  • An ASP email form/upload script which dynamically creates an XML file by first storing the data in a database

This is truly what Flash is meant to do. It isn’t meant to make meaningless welcome pages. The next generation of Flash is to incorporate ASP, PHP, Databases with it. No more of these pointless animations and all-flash websites.

“what the heck’s with geck?” continued…

I received valuable feedback on my first try at a gecko. These are my changes, I reversed the color to be dark on the edges and lighter at the center, made the eyes less scary, and made the gecko skinnier with smaller back legs.

On a technical note, I also changed the outline to the pen tool which gave me a consistent line weight and nicer curves (notice the tail)

I was playing with different layers and noticed that the gecko doesn’t look to bad when I just use the outline with the body color layer turned off. Also I liked the solid body color.

original first try

revised, skinnier, cleaner lines, more constrast

outline of gecko

solid color gecko

It’s been a while…
…since I did a print project. I’ve been so wrapped up with learning more about CSS, website standards and doing digital illustration that I’ve almost forgotten about print design. I kicked back in gear with a project for Meadow Heights’ Worship Concert. Here are a few screen shots from the bulletin which will be 8 1/2 by 5 1/2 when folded.

I’m currently taking Trigonometry and I was surprised to use my knowledge of the unit circle to decide how best to create the radiating circle on the back and the background of the inside. I’m beginning to understand why a liberal arts education is so important… if only to make this one design.

inside of the bulletin

“what the heck’s with geck?”

That’s what the professor said her husband told her when he heard she was calling it Gecko Mathematics.

I echo that same question.

But I’m going with it, for now anyway. I’ve created an emblem. It’s only about 3 quarters of the way finished.

My Process:
I first sketched a few gecko’s from photos online. I then traced one of them with ink. Then I taped it to my Wacom Tablet and began tracing it into Photoshop with the Brush Tool. The key is to turn on “Shape Dynamics” and Other Dynamics” This makes your drawing resemble your normal style because the line gets lighter and thinner when pressing lighter and it gets darker and thicker when you press harder. This effect helps with the visual liveliness. After drawing the outline I filled it with a light green. Then I used the brush tool with slightly darker colors to draw in the darks, then I chose a lighter color to draw the highlights.

I have 3 layers in the document. 1 is the green fill, 1 is the outline, and 1 is the eyes created with the pen tool.

I do feel this illustration lacks some liveliness due to my color change in the outline. I took out the lightness and darkness and made it a solid green… I need to make it skinnier, define the highlights and darks to be more realistic, and then incorporate it into the logo for the website.

I’m open to your critique.

Blast from the Past
I don’t know why I’m posting my design work from high school. If only to prove a point that Truman State University is teaching me something about design. I was a senior in high school when my then band director requested I design his website for his political campaign.

This was my first website job.

Notice my inclination for good typography… or lack thereof. I used drop-shadows and edges/strokes on all text. I used a script font, I used a pointless “welcome message”

All these are what I now know is generally bad to do.

You live, You learn.

website job number one

I won’t blame this on the software I was using, but it definitely didn’t help. Anyone ever hear of Microsoft Image Composer? It was shipped with old versions of Microsoft FrontPage. It is what I used until entering college and being forced to use Adobe Photoshop.

farewell dearest Image Composer

You’ll be missed

This program didn’t have layers, channels, pen tool, etc. It was essentially one layer and you could only “undo” once.

Only one undo.

You Photoshop guys wouldn’t survive in the world of one undo.

I survived.

On the (Photoshop) Drawing Board

gecKo mathematics

  • I’m working to complete all the secondary pages for this website, then I need to brainstorm ideas for how to present a math workbook online so that parents and teachers can see the teacher manuals and student workbook all on the same webpage. For all you teachers out there… I’m trying to create the online equivalent to a teacher edition book. The solution will be and should be much different than the typical wrap-around column with teacher notes on the outer edge and bottom of the page. Webpages aren’t print documents and can’t handle a very wide layout.
  • A gecko illustration is also needed for use on the website.

Worship Concert 2007 @ Meadow Heights

I get to create everything from website ads to the bulletin to the powerpoint slides. I still have the bulletin and powerpoint slides left to create. Here is a sneak peak:

website ad

front of the bulletin (8 1/2 x 11 turned on its side with the fold on the top)

Agricultural Science
I’m currently templating and programming the tertiary pages of the current website. I basically copy and paste the content from the current pages and put them in a blank webpages, then view the code to delete all the extra formatting that I’m using stylesheets for.

A screenshot sneak peak

See them live!
Homepage, Secondary, Tertiary