For this assignment I have to create a layout for a publication in a magazine or journal about a subject that is visually stimulating and of personal interest.
I have chosen to do the magazine spread about a project that I am currently working on with Emilienne Rebel for her company. She makes beanies for hair loss and chemotherapy and this is something very close to my heart because my Mum went through it and is amazingly still with us today. Emilienne had not long given birth to her daughter when she found out she had Grade 3 advanced breast cancer, and she was only 31. And so her journey through chemotherapy & operations began and it was during this time that she was inspired to design some comfortable headwear. When she lost her hair the scarfs she wore would always slip and the woollen hats were itchy and hot and the wigs were uncomfortable and from this Bold Beanies was born.
Like her health her company has gone from strength to strength and has a huge line of beanies for adults. She has also recently introduced a childrens range with matching teddy hats and came to me because she wanted to re-build her website and make it fresh and have all new images of every product.
It was unlike any job that i had done before, there is hundreds of different hats and each one had to be photographed in several ways:
The children’s range was very important to Emily because she wanted to display them in a fun way…. there is nothing good about cancer but what gets people through it is staying happy and positive so she wanted that to be a factor. She brought lots of props to the studio and i photographed our children wearing the hats, we got so many great photos and she was over the moon with the result.
THINGS TO CONSIDER
- Lighting & backdrop
- Consistency in shots / angles
- Image storage
Emilienne wanted a white backdrop to keep a consistency through all the images but one issue that i didn’t take into consideration was the temperature. We mainly use natural window light in the studio and even though it had been a sunny day, the light had changed throughout the shoot. So when i uploaded the images to my computer they are all varying slightly in colour temp……an issue that i wouldn’t have had if we had used studio lighting only. At the time Emilienne had said it wasn’t necessary and as long as they were in front of a white backdrop it would suffice. Only to find out at a later date when she was uploading the product pics to her google shop that they were being refused because they background wasn’t white enough. It’s something that i can rectify in Photoshop but considering how many images there is it’s a lengthy process. So that was the biggest lesson learnt and for any future product photography i will be using studio light only.
There was hundreds of hats to photograph so when it came to the children we knew that we had to work fast because they would soon get bored, the good thing was the props and that seemed to keep the momentum going because they enjoyed getting into character.
It took several days to photograph the full range and i had several thousands of images, all between 26-30MB so i used a lot of SD cards and had to make sure that everything was backed up twice at the end of each day.
I began my research on google for design tips, and out of many similar articles i found this website https://designschool.canva.com/blog/design-rules/ which states some rules that you shouldn’t break.
- Keep even spacing in between text characters & words.
- Make sure text is bold and easy to read, don’t use faded colours.
- Don’t overuse capital letters, it comes across as shouting.
- Keep line lengths short, 6 words per line is the golden number.
- Use colour & type to define hierarchy – make the important points stand out.
- Always use a grid – makes sure all the components on your page are lined up evenly.
- Design for your audience, use appropriate text, colours, icons.
- Try not to have ‘widows & orphans’ parts of a sentence or a single word on a separate line.
- Consider colour palettes, which colours compliment each other and colour theory, how different colours affect people – orange is said to stimulate appetite.
- Don’t use more than 2-3 fonts
- Don’t use display fonts (handwriting) for the main body of text, it is hard to read.
- Never stretch your type, it distorts it. Try and find one that suits your needs without having to stretch it.
- Avoid colour discord – 2 colours that are widely separated on the colour wheel. When paired together they can look muddy.
- Don’t think of white space as empty space, a minimalistic approach helps put more focus on a specific area and allows the design to breathe
- Don’t follow design trends, keep yours original.
- Use the right tools, high res images.
- Make sure the layout is correct for the final publication.
- Correct grammar
- Don’t use too many effects, keep the design simple.
Most of these are common sense but they were a good reminder of what to consider.
I also got lots of layout inspiration from magazines and places like Google, Pinterest, Creative Market, some of which I have below:
I saved these one’s in particular because I like different elements in each of them especially the minimalistic leaf, your eye is drawn straight to that and i think that’s a really important part of any publication.
The layout was really time-consuming, I spent hours playing with the arrangement, fonts and colours and trying the text in different ways. Minimal and vibrant was the look i wanted to achieve, i didn’t want it cluttered because there is so many colours in the Beanies.
There was so many images to choose from for this and that was the difficult part, I was really drawn to the ones of them when they were wearing masks and hats over the beanies because the kids look like they are having so much fun in these ones and they make you smile. I didn’t end up using those ones though because I thought that the focus needs to be on the Beanie itself and nothing else.
SCREENSHOTS OF DESIGN PROCESS
I seemed to get stuck with it here and this was where I was going to leave it:
But I still wasn’t happy about it and couldn’t figure out what wasn’t right so i revisited it the following day with fresh eyes and changed it to this:
Which I am much happier with, it just seems to work better and i originally wanted to include the image of the mum putting the hat on but it didn’t fit anywhere in my previous layout.
I found a magazine Mockup template on Graphicsfuel which i used to see how it would look if it was in a magazine http://www.graphicsfuel.com/2016/04/magazine-mockup-psd-template/ I applied my image to their template in Photoshop by using the WARP tool to pull out the top and bottom of the pages to create a 3D effect.
The layout i have created reflects my idea for a fun, clean, fresh, bright, minimal publication to advertise the new range of Bold Beanies for children. From the initial idea of planning how to photograph the Beanies with Emilienne & the idea to advertise the childrens range in a fun way all the way through to the final images i feel that i have achieved all the learning outcomes for this assignment by:
- Researching & planning
- Developing ideas & decision-making
- Working through problems & finding solutions
- Using the correct media & techniques
- Producing work for a client, meeting the brief and deadlines
- Evaluating the process along the way, learning and making notes of how I could have improved.