Experimental JetSet

After seeing Helvetica over Xmas, I have been looking at experimental jetsets work alot. I found their opinions on the typeface very interesting and almost brave due to the slating that many of the 'pro's' delivered during their interviews on the font. They stated thatby using Helvetica for alot of their work they are not spending ages looking for a typeface

Experimental Jetsets work uses bold type, in well designed grid systems to create 'easy to use' designs which speak in a very neutral manner due to their 'over-use' of the font. An over use which I find inspiring and interesting (who knows maybe I like the font too much...). In short I think they are one of the better collectives which I know about it, a great group of creatives!!

(Extremely popular T shirt by the JetSet, which incidently has been worn by a number of high profile celebrities and has also been heavily ripped off, using the same idea for different bands or groups).


Helvetica: A Film by Gary Hustwit

I watched Helvetica earlier this week and thought I would write my thoughts and opinions on the film as well on the huge influential and probably the most discussed typeface ever.

I actually began watching the film as a last resort, thinking it would be extremely boring and monotonous to listen to various type and design professionals either moan or praise Helvetica but in actual fact is was very interesting. The film gives a run down of the history and development of the typeface, Helvetica (an apparantly cleaner akzidenz grotesk).

I personally really like the font and see nothing wrong with using it, or its overuse for that matter. Why has it been used so much? Because it works, I dont think that that makes it worth a debate. I find it quite amusing when so many people (including very well known designers) have such an issue with the typeface being used; If anything I have a feeling that such people are somewhat jealous that they didnt design it themselves.

The type has gone through various versions and revisions, as wellas going through a stage of overuse, followed by a stage of almost boycotting of the type family before returning to its rightful place within society, being used, when a neutral type is required.

When watching the documentary I found the positive comments and discussions from certain type designers much more of worth than some of the almost immature accusations which people put on the typeface. In particular I found the section in which Experimental Jetset discussed their opinions of the type extremely interesting. Their opinion is that Helvetica is a font that saves a designer looking through all their fonts as it is well rounded and suits such a huge number of jobs. An opinion that by and large I totally agree with, if it aint broke dont fix it!

Many similar fonts exist (Akzidenz Grotesk, Univers,etc) including almost direct copies due to licensing issues(Microsoft' Arial), however, after watching the documentary and listening to the different designer's opinions, as well as using the typeface myself, I have decided that Helvetica as a typeface deserves a certain amount of respect due to it being the most heavily used type as well its overall neutral, well balanced forms, in the huge amount of versions and weights avaliable.


Visual Communication In Context 2 - Results and Feedback

We recieved our feedback for the VCC2 brief today and I was... satisfied with my mark (happy would be pushing it abit). I agreed with all the feedback about the work I handed in for this first brief but that doesn't stop me being disapointed.

My final mark was (53) and all my individual grades fell within the (50-59) bracket which is... satisfactory. The worst bit about it is I know its the mark the work I handed in deserved, sure I wish it was a higher mark but I know the work didn't deserve it.

I really need to knuckle down on the next few projects to really get where I want to be. Anyways Christmas to enjoy now... aka. Do loads of work.


Well... A Week and a Half Later...

Thought maybe writing a post for ye olde blogge, would snap me out of the infection known as holiday mode. Since discussing my rough direction in terms of the D&AD briefs with Mike last week (an extremely useful couple of days in my opinion), I was feeling extremely good about really knuckling down.

The website project which was given to us over a week and a half ago now, I was looking forward to, a chance to develop an identity, to put it online in an innovative and interestig way... alas nothing has been done!

Well, thats not quite true. A brief run down of the little progress made for each is included below.

D&AD - Home Base 'Grow Your Own' Packaging/POS
- Previous to discussing the brief with Mike, I had only chosen this brief to work on, no work or ideas had actually been considered. After getting some very rough ideas and looking in Homebase, I met with Mike and he first suggested that we discuss ideas and research as a group to get some initial ideas (this was extremely useful as we were able to consider the ideas from everyones point of view, an extremely good way of thinking of or developing ideas you never would have thought of).

Next I just began further brainstorming before talking to Mike and discussing my working methods and where he felt I should start. We discussed a few ideas and he recommended I begin to consider the phyisical shape, size and workings of the packaging and to worry about point of sale and branding later.

I am yet to really get on with this one but I plan to concentrate my efforts over the holiday on working on this competition brief... Note: That means getting alot SBC 2 out of the way with this last week before the holidays start.

Brief - Screen Based Communication 2
- When I say I haven't done anything on this piece of work is abit of a tall tale as I have actually considered it a fair bit, I have got a relatively solid idea of a Flash site on paper, but would quite like to experiment with the other options avaliable to us; namely developing the use of CSS for a site (or possibly combining the two (Flash/CSS)to create a Flash Site, with easily updateable text content)...
I still need to get some solid inspiration and visiual identity but so far I think I am progressing in a good direction.

Sadly I have not done anything more than that stated and would quite like to have had developed at least one of the projects to a stage where I could devote the majority of the holidays to working on the other project. Well there's my progress thus far, Ill hopefully get some work done now!!!