In anticipation for forthcoming modules in my BA (Hons) Graphic Design course, I have started to pour over the internet, trapsing through books, and indulging in all things design to find my niche- what I love, what inspires me, and what I aspire to create, and perhaps, one day specialise in.
Here are a few of my favourites...
Nothing quite cheers up my day that looking at the wonderful drawings and designs created by Norwich University of the Arts graduate, Gemma Correll- an incredibly witty and talented young illustrator and graphic designer who posesses all of the charm and playfulness that I aspire to creat in my own design work.
I love Gemma's simple aesthetic and child-like style, with interesting textures and splashes of colour, and a truly distinctive style that people can automatically relate to her- which works when applied not only to illustrative prints, but also applied to textiles, in murals, in fanzines...the list goes on.
I really love Gemma's apparent determination- never going more than a day or so without producing another brilliantly whimsical design full of character, creativity, and, more often that not, a hint of sarcasm (of which i am fluent)- a real strength and passion for what she does is completely inspirational, and if I could create half of the magic and awe that she does, and inspires within her fans, I would be more than just a little content.
For around five years, since discovering his work in an edition of Vogue (how times do change!) I have been an enormous fan of Rob Ryan's carefully, and beautifully crafted papercraft worked- oozing with romanticism and charming sentimentality.
I find Rob's arduous process of design absolutely inspiring- his designs so clean-cut, and as near to perfect as perfect can be, it's almost hard to believe that he creates every single paper cut by hand- really admirable when i consider the amount of times i've had fights with papercuts- they really do take so much practice and patience. Although these romantic and delicate pieces may not be to everyone's taste, I would find it incredibly hard for anyone to doubt how skilled and talented Rob Ryan truly is.
What I also love about his work is how wonderfully it translates when applied to other mediums- as shown in many of the examples on his website, and for sale through his etsy store- on wooden keys, tiles, in book illustration, even on couture fashion- the niche that Rob Ryan has carved (if you will excuse the pun) is a truly original and inspired one, and I am phenomenly excited and privaleged to be visiting his lecture at my University on Friday 25th Feburary 2011.
Far from closet-ing my nerd-like tendancies, I embrace them.
A one-time aspirational graphic novel illustrator, the world of comic books and the graphic novel completely fascinates me, and millions the world-over, with a hardcore fan base and support evident in culture through fashion, literature, television, and, of course, amazing graphic design whereupon the x-men's geneology has been mapped out in the style of a family tree.
In my mind, one of the greatest assests of studying, and practicing graphic design is the ability to make people laugh, and I believe that some of the greatest examples of humour in graphic design are found in the more than usually linear and regimentally serious world of infographics- blending the two opposing concepts often making for genuinely memorable and hilarious design.
For me, one of the most important aspects of design is boldness, and two of my favourite examples of how a bold aesthetic can be achieved is through colour and geometric shapes- of which are both shown in the great examples above. I believe, despite its obvious creativity and imagination required, design is just a short step away from the academic and concise worlds of mathematics and science- through shapes, colour theory, the angle of curvature in anatomy of type- and when the subjects are bought together, it creates a wonderful harmony and sophisticated design.
Recently, many of my particular loves and appreciations of graphic design have been recognised by one particular company, Geigy- a Swiss graphic design team of whom particularly worked with medicinal companies in promotional or packaging design, breaking down intensely intricate anatomical drawings to bold and bright geometric illustrations which I believe are so strongly designed, creating a really distinctive aesthetic for the companies in a friendly and approachable design.