In this post, I shall talk about the response I got when I took my ideas to the interim crit to see if the tutors and/or other students had any opinions on them. I shall also be including along the way any other feedback I have received over the course of the last couple of days and group it all into one place. On top of that I will show the developments made as a result of this. I shall start with an wider view of the project, before looking further into each individual element.
Overall: In general, at the interim crit there was a minor split in opinion over the identity I had created so far in general. All agreed that it was not totally representative of someone who creates acoustic music, but as one tutor raised the point that he liked the fact it was not cliché, and was original. I also felt it works well as the client has so far approved the designs he has seen, and has himself said his style takes influence from a wide variety of sources, and this can lead to a bit of inconsistency at times so I would not want him to have an identity that allowed for no flexibility.
Album Cover: From the work I have done for this, many people who have seen the designs I have created have commented on how much they like the following design:
When I show them the current design, which I’ve put below, I think they are a bit surprised as to how different the design looks, but I have said that I acted on the client’s interests and that he must choose what he thinks is best suited to use for his identity, as this is after all a matter of opinions when it comes down to ‘arty’ designs such as this. I shall send a selection to the client as I have done before for him to decide on.
The only comment made regarding the typography for any of my designs was a suggestion I could play on the broken theme and break the type as if it had been cracked open, but I am not sure this will suit what the client wants and I think will upset the minimal aesthetic being created. Other than that, I will continue along the same route as I have been going as I can justify my thoughts and processes.
CD label: From the album cover I have created for the client, I wondered whether the best solution would be to take the album cover and place it onto the label, and then supplement this with the logo, as the below image shows. However, although I think the CD in isolation works very well, I am not so sure as to how it would look together with the album. Often there is quite a contrast between the CD label and album cover. I’ll see what the client thinks.
Logo: One idea, in relation to the album cover actually, that was suggested was to place the type for the logo inside the face, I tried it, and it really did not work. But the thought process was in full swing now and I just got the feeling the logo was not right. It may look fine on the business card, but remove it from that and stick it somewhere else, and I was not convinced it would work. So I thought about different layouts, and eventually realised I had the answer all the time, which I had previously discounted. With a bit more time and effort, I got the logo looking how I wanted it to.
I then also experimented with placing it on different backgrounds, as I was aware that white type on a white background such as a letterhead etc would never work. So I changed the white type to black, which I think works equally as well. I may construct a ‘Style Guide’ for the logo, just to highlight what logo works best. There will still more than likely need to be kerning adjustments made for the type.
Business Card: As I stated earlier in the project, I was planning to change the background of the business card to one using one of the cloud brushes to see what it was like, but in the end I decided the sky background is best. It also received favourable feedback. I have re-positioned it slightly to make best use of the clouds though. I have also added in the new logo and made it smaller to allow for more space around it.
The evening before the crit I asked for some feedback from one of the tutors, and she felt that the business card did not give any signals as to him being a musician. We worked out a solution could be to place a very small symbol next to the logo, like a copyright or trademark symbol, an example of which I mocked up in Illustrator. This symbol could be a guitar, as shown below or a treble clef, or any musical note.
However, when I suggested this at the crit, it was not viewed favourably, due to the fact of it being cliché and to the fact if they were handed out personally, they would know he was a musician. Their alternative solution was that if I felt I needed to include he was a musician, then I could move the type down on the back of the business card, and place in a top line that reads something like: Daniel Orton – Musician. I have tried this and placed it side by side for a comparison with the design I currently have.
I left this design for a while to think, and when I came back to it, I suddenly realised that actually, I did not think it was that good, not because the concept of what I had done was flawed, I had just missed the final touches that make a good design good. So I made some changes, which I’ve detailed below:
- Changed the background colour to a slightly more vibrant blue, now looks less dull.
- Used the client’s name, in the Bebas Neue typeface for distinction.
- Tried using the guitar symbol, which failed, so I used a music note instead, which I think has worked very well, and is not to cliché.
- Placed a line under the name and symbol to provide a divider, and a visual ‘ground’ for them to stand on.
- Decreased size of type and icons to fit in the new space, I think they were oversized before.
- Changed main typeface from Maven Pro to Open Sans, as I started getting the feeling Maven Pro was too curvy and bold, and I found got in the way of reading what was written in it. So although Open Sans has a bit less character, I think it is the better typeface to use for the client due to the fact it is highly legible, unobtrusive and professional.
Conclusion: Overall, I think this project is going well, with a few minor points to consider, but other than that I got the impression that I was producing some good work that the client approved of, which is what was required for this project. Now that I have made the changes to the designs, I shall get in touch with the client again and ask for his opinions.