Always Learning – Copyright for Designers

A week or so without any assignments and I’m still trying to get used to it, lol 🙂 At the same time, my head is swimming with about a thousand ideas on what I should do next – what do I want to do with my new skills? Where do I want them to take me? So many ideas! I definitely think I’m going to create some sort of business in the design/art area, but I’m not sure exactly what though… still some sorting out to do there.

One thing that did come to mind while I’ve been thinking about all of this, was an assignment I did last year around Copyright. Copyright should be a really straight-forward thing, i.e. don’t copy other people’s stuff, but sometimes things aren’t quite so simple.

This assignment was the first time I used InDesign, so it was ah, interesting… I can’t say I’m a huge fan of that program now though either… Anyway, for the assignment we had to write a one-page magazine article on ‘Copyright for Designers’. For the presentation of the article we had to find an article in a design magazine and duplicate their grid layout.

I chose an article from No Cure – one of my favourite art/design magazines 🙂

Thankfully I worked out how to set up the grid without too much hassle. We had to include photos too – I used my own photos of my own drawings – easy way to avoid copyright issues 🙂

Anyway, here is my article:

The Learning Curve – A Reflection on Nearing the End of my Course

As I’m getting down to the last couple of months of the Graphic Design course, I’m having to look back on some of the projects I’ve completed over the last couple of years to put together a bit of a portfolio. It’s been really interesting to see the amount and range of work I’ve gotten through!

For some of my assignments I remember how excited and proud I was of getting them finished but now I look at them and think of all the things I could do to improve them – thats the learning curve I guess.

Then there are other projects – like the one I’ll get to below – that I wouldn’t even really know where to start to replicate them now. I’d have to go back over my notes and run through them step by step. I think that’s probably just because I’ve gravitated towards certain parts of design and am less drawn to others so I don’t utilise some particular tools. When I think about it though if I were to try and put together this fruit bowl now, I would be more familiar with the software tools and instead of it taking me three weeks to do, it might take me maybe a day. I guess that is progress.

The project I’m referring to is this one, the “Fruit Bowl”:

We had to draw a fruit bowl that contained four different fruits, using Adobe Illustrator.
I remember I wasn’t 100% happy with the pineapple, but all in all I was pretty stoked with myself that I’d managed to pull it together at all. I struggled so much at the beginning with using the software that everything took me about 10 times longer than it should to complete. I still prefer using pen and paper now, but I do admit I’m much better with the software than I used to be and it’ll only improve the more I use it.
When I’m getting through assignments now, it’s difficult to remember how much I’ve learnt over the last few years, so it’s good to go back and see how far I’ve come. Bring on graduation!! 🙂
If anyone’s interested I went through my old notes and these are some of the online tutorials I used to make the fruit bowl:



Texture in Photography

An example of texture in my own photography…

In a Learning Activity I had to do a little while ago I had to choose one design element and discuss how it could be used to engage an audience and create meaning… and give two examples.

In the readings leading up to the activity I came across Ted Forbes and started following him on Pinterest… and discovered the photography of Ansel Adams!

After checking out his work, I picked texture as my design element…

Texture as a design element is often used to engage a viewer through dramatic effect. In a medium such as photography where a 3D scene or environment is turned into a 2D image, clever use of texture allows the viewer to imagine the 3D scene.

Two examples of great uses of texture are two photos centered on sand, by Ansel Adams. In “Surf Sequence #2” the texture of the sand stands out and allows the viewer to sense the graininess of it, whereas in “Sand Dunes, Oceano, California”, Adams is conveying the texture of the ripples – peaks and valleys – of the sand on the dunes. Adams uses sharp focus and high contrast to help convey the textures within his images.


Learning Activity: Typesetting

Garamond – Gill Sans – Rockwell – Edwardian Script – Blackmoor
Good Morning, Good Morning! It’s the weekend 🙂 What have you got planned? I’ve got a huge list of things I want to get through this weekend including a whole heap of studying! This little study activity was super easy so I was able to get through it while I had my brekkie – got to love multi-tasking haha – I had to research a few fonts and typeset my name in each of them. Not difficult and it was interesting to read some of the background behind the fonts.
First up though, what is typesetting?

“Setting type or typesetting is the process of putting text into the right style and size of type and the desired arrangement on the page in preparation for printing.”

Now a little background on the fonts I had to use…


  • Serif font
  • Old-style
  • Originally designed by Claude Garamond (1480 – 1561), then confusingly by Jean Jannon (1580 – 1635)
  • Country of origin: France
  • Uses less ink than Times New Roman
  • Large Dr Seuss picture books are set in a version of Garamond
  • Conveys solid tradition whilst remaining elegant



  • Sans-serif
  • Humanist
  • Designed by Eric Gill (1882 – 1940)
  • Country of origin: UK
  • Originally used in 1926 in a bookshop facia in Bristol
  • Was designed to be used as both text and display font
  • Used in the BBC logo since 1997
  • Originally designed as only uppercase. Lowercase was added in 1929
  • Sometimes referred to as ‘the Helvetica of England’



  • Serif
  • Slab serif / Egyptian
  • Designed at the Monotype foundry in 1934 modeled after 1910’s Litho Antique
  • Geometric
  • Mainly used for display text
  • Country of origin: UK



  • Created in 1994 by Edward Benguiat (1927 – )
  • Italic / Script
  • Designed to resemble hand drawn calligraphy
  • Elegant and flowy, often used for wedding invitations
  • Country of origin: USA



  • Designed by David Quay (1948 – ) in 1983
  • Based on old English lettering
  • Mixture of medieval and gothic connotations
  • Blackletter

My Fonts

Anyway, off to get moving on a few other things on my list, have a great weekend!

Don’t be a Design Zombie

Part of what I’m finding interesting about this course is that all of the learning activities and assignments are really different and not strictly about how to physically draw or design something… Although I could give some of the report writing a miss lol 😒

For one of the earlier learning activities we had to find an article about something we thought would interest other students and people in the design community. We then had to explain why we found it interesting and how it has contributed to our learning of design.

I’d been watching a lot of James Victore’s YouTube videos at the time so I picked an interview by him: “Don’t Be a Design Zombie”.

I thought the article was interesting because of his thoughts on the practice of  being a good designer – get things done, make decisions, and be conscious of habits and people around you. I took away from it the importance of getting away from the computer screen, especially during the idea generation stage. There are way to many distractions on my computer (and the Internet!) that I’ll somehow find myself getting stuck into rather than any sort of creative thinking. As much as I luv my iMac, sometimes just a pencil and paper are the best tools 😊

Study Activity: History of Graphic Design – A Poster

This was an interesting study activity from earlier in the course… we had to “create a visual communication that represents the journey of graphic design from the 1890s to the present“. We could use any medium we liked, i.e., paints and pens, computer, collage, etc, but it just had to be A4 sized. I chose to put it together electronically because it was easier to find the pictures I wanted.

I focused on movie posters for my timeline because I thought that by choosing one topic it makes it a bit easier to see how graphic design has changed through the years…

The final image quality isn’t fantastic because like I said, this activity was pretty early on in my study and I’m pretty sure from memory I put it together in Powerpoint and saved the grouped images as a JPG through there – not the best way to get good quality as I now know. I remember it also taking me absolutely aaaaagggess to put together and it kind of makes me happy to know I could do it much faster and to a better quality if I was to do it again now – yay for learning progress! 🙂