What is the best way to tell a story? Pt 3

Firstly I shall be looking at scripts and storyboards as they are two very vital components to the first word, and the word I shall be focusing on most: Videography.

Scripts & Storyboards
Scripts are basically lines to be read out or acted out according to the directors choice. The most common use of scripts in the modern age is for movies where actors and actresses will read their lines and perform actions according to said script. Scripts are also used across all kinds of performances from Chinese Shadow puppets to ballet, opera, comedy shows, plays, audio books and much, much more. I chose to look into this topic because I feel scripts are the ‘in-between’ that allows any form of creative writing or idea to be transferred over into a movie or a play – it is the very thing that brings any idea to life in whichever form they are planning to portray the story.
Storyboards are either the stage before, during or after a script when it comes to directing for a movie etc, this is entirely dependent on what is being created and, of course, the creators preference of working. For example when I created a short comic book for a project, the first thing I did was brainstorm ideas in my own, very messy and sometimes considered ‘wrong’ way. Secondly I jumped straight into the storyboard and created the script along the way… but as I mentioned, that is just my preference. People like Hayao Miyazaki are famous for creating the story as they go along (I’m kinda guilty of this haha…) whereas the ‘proper’ way is to go in stages.
Looking at both of these as the person who has not created them can be interesting because they are neither a finished product nor a beginning stage – their story may not be clear to the reader because you are virtually looking at the inner workings of somebody’s creative process. This is the interesting part though – seeing a work in progress leaves more open to interpretation, therefore the story is subject to change depending on who is reading it and what stage the script/storyboard is at.

Newspaper & Magazines:
Newspapers are very literal, they are told mainly to inform whilst still making the story interesting – essentially making them more ‘boring’ than a book for example which goes into great detail. The pros of a Newspaper are that they can spread the word fast and they are straight to the point – no fancy language, meaning almost anyone who can read is able to figure out what they are trying to get across. Their headlines, although often misleading, are also to be congratulated as they can attract the attention of passers to the stories inside with such a short ammount of text.

Magazines are similar to Newspapers, apart from the fact they are generally less about factual news stories and more about gossip. Not only is the language used less formal and leaning more towards keeping people intrigued, but the content itself is not necessarily factual. Also there are many different types of magazines that are truthful and informative, less story based such as health magazines but still, they always rely on people wanting something (ie gossip, glamour secrets, weight loss) to reel people in, using the same ‘WOW!’ kind of language that isn’t realistically seen anywhere else in storytelling. The other issue is that both magazines and newspapers can’t stray too far from the truth, only stretch it slightly or quote speculations. This limits the storytelling potential further.

Comic Books
There are many different types of ‘comic books’ and graphic novels on the market today. Some popular ones are The Walking Dead, The Dark Knight Returns, Watchmen, Death Note, Bleach etc.
Comic books are, in my opinion, sometimes better at portraying stories than a lot of books. The reason I say this is because they are a hybrid of both visual and verbal, containing (depending on the book in question, of course) written sound effects, character dialogue, a great storyline all accompanied by visuals which in my humble opinion, create a better representation of the story than a book alone. The only reason I still regard books to be better than comic books and graphic novels is because for a graphic novel, everything is handed to you (the scenes acted out, the character’s appearances, etc) whereas a book leaves much more to the imagination.

Thank you for reading!
Part 4 shall focus on the two main candidates for the best way to tell a story: Videography and Books.

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What is the best way to tell a story? Pt 2

So far we have covered the pros and cons of Columns and Tapestries.
Not straying too far from these ancient techniques of storytelling, I shall be focusing on the next topic:


Traditional Hula dancers dance to Hawaiian chants and songs rather than to an actual beat, this gives the dances meaning and essentially a storyline that wouldn’t be as prevalent if these words were taken away. Most of the stories are of ancient mythology, gods and tales of creation and wonder.


Chinese Shadow Puppetry
This interesting art of shadow puppetry is often seen at traditional Chinese festivals and weddings and consists of manipulating cutouts of characters in front of a light to use their shadow as the characters instead of the cutouts themselves. This method of storytelling can cover anything from confronting issues to moral teachings and of course, mythical tales too. For smaller shows the puppeteer often sings or talks, telling the tale as he/she goes, though for more fancy events the puppeteer is usually accompanied by musicians.



Drawn from Greek Theatre, this ancient way of storytelling alternates between singing and speaking, performed on a platform. Each story usually includes a single (or no) prop and a marionette, often consisting of virtuous battles and tales of daily Sicilian life alike.


Rakugo is a traditional Japanese comedy of sorts, told by one storyteller alone who takes tales of modern day situations of everyday life, and uses history as a way of enforcing a moral lesson in an amusing way.


Griots are the traditional keepers of cultural history in West Africa. These storytellers often accompany their words with instruments too, alongside their duties to preserve family histories.


Bharatanatyam originated in Tamil Nadu, South India many thousands of years ago. Devadasis (Indian Temple dancers) are the ones who perform this sacred dance as it is considered a prayer to the gods, Bharatanatyam consists of stories based around these gods and deities and is different depending on the gods that are being worshipped and the temple in which this dance of worship and storytelling takes place.


Modern Theatre:

When I say modern theatre, I’m talking about the type found in New York, London… everywhere across Europe and some other parts of the world of course. Theatres are home to many different types of performances, a few I shall be focusing on specifically: Ballet, Opera and musicals as these are very story – orientated.

Ballet dancing originated in the Italian Renaissance courts of the 15th and 16th centuries, later spreading to France before the rest of the world. It is a formalised version of dance, focused mainly on poise and elegance of both the male and female dancers. Ofen Ballet can be just a theatricle dance, but the majority of the time it portrays a story, a couple you may have heard of being The Nutcracker and Swan Lake (more recently adapted as Black Swan in the movie).


Flashy, amazing and very over the top (in all the best ways) musicals such as Wicked, Lion King and We Will Rock You have taken modern theatres by storm. Having seen Queen’s We Will Rock You in person, the feeling you get from seeing such a flashy performance is overwhelming, their songs incorporating the audience making you feel part of the performance itself. Some may think the story itself can sometimes seemed swamped amongst all the singing and dancing, though having experienced the pantomime every christmas and a few West End performances, I think as a generalisation the story is key to the supporting music, props and dancing.


Focused mainly around period themes, beautiful vocals and orchestral music, Opera tells a story almost entirely through singing instead of speaking, often accompanied by props and background dancers (mainly ballet) since the early 1500’s. One of the most famous operas in modern times is the Phantom of the Opera movie.


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D&AD – The End

Below is some screenshots of my editing process (seems though I’ve already covered these techniques in many previous posts, I feel it would be a repeat if I explained them all, but for all of you who are curious – here they are):

So basically the bottles went from this
To this


And finally, to this


I also gave them lids!
Though I chose to go without

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When putting all the images together I made sure they all lined up at specific points, also that the “YOU” logotype was the same, consistent size throughout.
The result both with and without the health drinks is below:

All Bottles FLATTENED.jpg

Skin Bottles FLATTENED.jpg

Just take a moment to cry at how many layers there were:

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To see my final hand in, click the link below 🙂

Hand In

Thankyou very much for following me through this project, I hope you enjoyed it! I certainly did lol ^.^

Till, next time, love Gemoomay :3

D&AD – Baking the Idea

The Brief:
“Break new ground in beauty branding”

My Response:
A company that focuses on personalised medication aimed at all audiences, prescription medicine too.

Specifics/selling points of this company:
– Uses natural Ingredients
– Vegan
– Dermatologist Tested
– For Everyone

I have outlined the style that I want to adopt for this project, the first thing I did was sketched out lots of ideas as you can see below:

I decided to go with glass bottles, the reason being so that the whole “no secrets, no surprises” theme I have going. Glass represents total transparency, like my brand itself. Using boiling tubes and other scientific looking bottles is one idea I was close to going with… The issue was that I didn’t realise quite how illusive/expensive scientific equipment is, so I did what most people would do in this situation and bought a suspiciously large quantity of alcohol from my local Morrisons. Needless to say the old lady behind me thought I was an alcoholic judging on her concerned glances.


Trauma aside, I did what any alcoholic would do with this much drink and poured it all down the sink. *Pats self on back*
I then removed any labelling and metal casings, leaving the bare bottles themselves as you can see from the images below.


Upon looking through many different brands of cosmetics, I chose to have clear liquid represent my concoctions, thus sticking to the theme of transparency and pure, natural ingredients.
As mentioned in my previous post, there is always the issue of certain things being associated with males and females, I found that flowers are one of these items in particular. To challenge myself a little I want to include flowers somewhere either in the branding of my beauty brand or within the products themselves. I sort of strayed away from the idea in fear of it looking too feminine until I came across Flower Beards. Holy crap why do I find these so cool, attractive and manly? No clues but that pretty much sealed the deal. I chose not to be scared of marking schemes and go with my gut – flowers are the most natural form of beauty and they hold so many benefits so why rule them out?
Fermented flowers are used in quite a few (mainly Korean) cosmetics (see this link) and I love the idea.

So I visited my local florist and bought a large bunch of berries, branches and flowers that were all different colours and possessed a fresh, beneficial look to them. These will act as my fermented flower ingredient within the product itself.
On to the pictures!
So I set up my lights and did a couple of test shots with different backgrounds as you can see below. In the end I decided to go with white as it emphasizes the colours of each plant alongside the edges of the bottles the most. To give the bottles that black rim I put two sheets of card underneath my studio lights and at each side of the bottles.

And there is the result, unedited of course:





Thankyou for reading ^.^

D&AD – Ideas & Development

The Brief:
“Break new ground in beauty branding”

After the brainstorms & research in Post 1 and Post 2, I have decided to do a little more brainstorming for ideas before settling on a topic and with a more grounded understanding of how the beauty market works I feel the decisions I am making are right.

Below is the first set of Ideas I had. They are as follows:
. A company that focuses on personalised medication aimed at all audiences, prescription medicine too.
. A beauty brand with ‘no packaging’ – to be named “out of the box”
. Quite a humorous brand that addresses the issue your trying to fight

Name Ideas:
Inside Out
Out of the box
Your ______
Acne/Dark Circles/Dry Skin (the area the product combats)

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Ruling Out Ideas:
Seems though the aim of my beauty brand is to include everyone and not aim the product at a specific gender, age etc I have chosen to rule out the “sharp”, humorous idea because quite frankly there are a number of people I know who wouldn’t dream of buying a product that is advertising their specific issue. This is unintentionally ruling out older, more straight laced people also as many middle aged/older people are a little too mature for this kind of humour. Also some individuals may be insulted in some ways by this kind of branding. For example if this creme is to combat stretch marks and was named “STRETCH MARKS” I can’t imagine many people would want to advertise to the world that they have stretch marks – regardless of whether or not the product would work or not, many of people would’ve been turned away before they even had a chance to try it. The development for this idea is below:

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I researched different words that would be less offensive but I still stand by the point I made before about ruling out people/offending people before they even have a chance to see if this product works for them.
Though it is humorous and clever maybe for the young adult audience, I still feel it is contradicting the whole point of this brief a little bit.

The second idea I had was to create a product that doesn’t have packaging/that breaks free of the stereotypical packaging – quite literally. Though I think this is a decent idea, I still don’t feel like it is really hitting the whole issue the beauty industry is causing correctly – yes this product would almost be ‘bursting out’ of the usual, stereotypical packaging (thus stigmas attached to it), but it would still contain an essence of the type of marketing I am trying to avoid entirely.
I eventually decided to rule out this idea because of how unpractical it is – also it wouldn’t be environmentally friendly to mass produce packaging that essentially is two packages in one.

The final idea:

I have finally settled on the idea of having a customisable beauty brand that isn’t consumer specific.

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May favourite names are Human, You/U and Your (insert product name).
Which of these I will end up choosing I’m not yet sure, I might even use more than one, first as the company name (who manufactures the products) and the other as the name of the product itself, of course this will change depending on the product itself.

I began looking into different product packaging that doesn’t hold any gender stereotypes on my Pinterest:

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From extensive searching and researching I have come t the conclusion that I’ll be creating quite a simple looking brand – I have collected some examples of bottles & packaging that I really like for this topic, these aren’t all beauty products – see below:

Most of the above don’t really fit into a specific category and I like that about them. I want my brand to give off the same simplistic yet sophisticated, genderless vibes.

When it comes to brands I know that aren’t really that gender specific, Simple and Nivea come to mind. There is a screenshot of Nivea’s website below, as you’ll see from the link Nivea still had mens and women’s categories of skincare which is what I’m trying to avoid.
Their website isn’t the look I’m going for though I wanted to point out how their use of colour and font makes them almost seem like a unisex brand – though they have separate categories of course.

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As I mentioned before I wanted to keep all animal products out of this line so I took a quick look at Vegan product packaging from food to skincare.
What I found was green – plants… the same kind of marketing repeated throughout everything marketing themselves as Vegan. As an addition to this, a lot of companies are so focused on marketing their “Vegan, cruelty free” produce that they’re almost clouding over the real benefits/goals of their products.
The conclusion of this research is I’m going to avoid shoving that my product is “VEGAN” in people’s faces (because believe it or not, this turns people away – my mother being one of these people) and focus on the main benefits/functions of the products I’ll be branding. Alpro is a vegan food company, their branding is below:
(I don’t have anything against Vegan produce I just don’t like most – not all – of the marketing as it aims at a narrow part of the population by making it seem like it’s only for vegans, not for regular people.)

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What is the best way to tell a story?

This is a question that has webbed its way throughout history as different cultures have used many different ways of story telling over the years.

I have decided to look at many of the different methods that have been used from hundreds of years ago to present day.

Let’s start:

I have decided to look at columns, more specifically the 40m tall Trajan Column located in Rome. This amazing column tells a story of battle, construction, overcoming obstacles and is over an astounding 1,900 years old! Estimated to have been built in 113AD, the column has been preserved beautifully.
I think Trajan Column is almost like an ancient comic strip… only a little too high for people to see. To see an astounding 360 degree view of this column click on this link or copy and paste the url below into your browser:

Another variant of a ‘column’ type story telling format is a totem pole. Native to northwestern United States and Canada’s western province, British Columbia, these unique wooden columns carved from tall trees can be used in a variety of different ways including storytelling of important events and portraying certain characteristics of the clan who carved them.

Columns aren’t always used for storytelling however, in fact their most common use is within structures either for decoration or structural reasons. I’ve seen them used for war statues and memorials too, they are basically there to make things look important.
One of the best known examples of a column is the one that stands in Trafalgar Square, London.

Makes for a beautiful landmark
The story will last for a ‘long’ time before it’s eroded
Displays the cultures craftsmanship

Sometimes only the people who made them can interpret their meaning
You have to walk around the column to read it, resulting in dizziness
It’s too tall to read without the aid of a cherry picker
The stone could erode over time
Should the pillar fall down there will be no way of telling which order the events depicted happened

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Tapestries are basically stories/scenes sewn onto fabric using coloured thread, sewn by hand, that will eventually make a picture.
There have been many historical tapestries discovered from around the world
Scotland, even as seen in the movie Brave by Disney features the main character and her mother creating a tapestry together, this tapestry symbolises family and is very important to them, thus emphasising how their meanings vary & that they can represent very important personal meanings. The kind of tapestries I’ve been looking at in particular are medievil tapestries as these are some of the most decorative ones used to depict a scene from our history.
In Britain, Scotland and all around the world people used tapestries as a decorative story board, often the rich families would hang these in their homes to show their importance as the time, money and skill required to create one of these wasn’t cheap, even back then.

Quite often the tapestries were used to show imaginary scenes or gods such as the one with the unicorn (goaticorn?) which shows they weren’t only used to show historical events, they were also used to tell stories.
To find out about a few different types of medieval tapestries such as King Arthur and Camelot tapestries, click this link.

Religious events and symbols are commonly found on tapestries in churches, chapels etc. As you can see below DaVinci’s painting of “the last supper” has been transferred to a tapestry, most likely so it can be hung on a religious site.

A few famous tapestries that I have looked at are the Cloth of St Gereon, the Hestia Tapestry and the Beyeux Tapestry.

^ Hestia Tapestry

^ Bayeux Tapestry (shows the events leading up to the Norman conquest of Englandconcerning William, Duke of Normandy, and Harold, Earl of Wessex, later King of England, and culminating in the Battle of Hastings.)

^ Cloth of St Gereon (Second oldest tapestry in existence within Europe, it’s a motif of a bull being attacked by a griffin)

Looking into the modern age Tapestries are only really used as an alternative to pictures when it comes to decorative art, below are a couple of examples:

There aren’t any meanings to these tapestries other than being purely aesthetic. These can be bought for fairly cheap on places like Etsy, Not on the highstreet etc.
When it comes to modern art, tapestries are few and far between. Whilst on the hunt for modern tapestries with a meaning/story behind them I came across a rather interesting artist named Grayson Perry, he has created what is said to be a spin off of the Bayeux Tapestry that I mentioned previously :

Of course this has nothing to do with the battle of hastings, instead this tapestry is named “Walthamstow Tapestry” and depicts the journey of life and death itself via the brands we use throughout our lives. This tapestry is scarily accurate, it even made me a little emotional when I saw some of the brands my Nannan uses towards the end of the tapestry. This beautiful work of art is almost telling us that we are all the same, we all live, consume, give back then die eventually.

Beautiful pieces or artwork
Shows care about the topic being shown
Display of craftsmanship

Very time consuming
Has to be big to fit some stories on
Takes a long time to figure out what the story is about/story can be mistaken
Erodes over time
Expensive to make (the old way)

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Deciding on a topic

So far I have come up with the following ideas for my essay topic:

Explore all media – Pick a topic and portray it several different ways using creative media of my choice, eg sound, video, photo, art, writing, design and maybe typography.
Explore what is dearest to people/what makes a person
People’s personal wonder cabinets/how life experiences changes what’s inside them
Finding myself/my style
Life story/short biographies/my biography?
Short story of a thing/creative writing
Earth – everything in one place
Exploration of the unknown/supernatural/death
How different people see the same subject/topic
Why we perceive things as scary/inviting/beautiful
Exploration of emotions
Exploring videography & directing (links to the video in the homepage of my site – could help improve this
Character design/story structure
Digital Painting

It’s pretty safe to say that these needed narrowing down… a lot. I have put the few that interest me the most below for you to see:

  • Exploring videography & directing (links to the video in the homepage of my site – could help improve this)
  • Explore all media – Pick a topic and portray it several different ways using creative media of my choice, eg sound, video, photo, art, writing, design and maybe typography.
  • Short stories/creative writing

The reason I have chosen the above topics is mainly because I feel as if Video and Creative Writing are the topics I am lacking most when it comes to the portfolio of my website. Completing any of these briefs will help expand not only my portfolio but also my knowledge and skills within an area that will be of use to me.

Exploring videography & directing” Has always been something I would like to explore more, one of the main reasons being that my website’s homepage is a giant video, and a rather amateur one to say the least. Exploring video will allow me to discover new editing and filming techniques to really portray beauty and a story through just a simple video that contains no sound.

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Short stories/creative writing” This doesn’t have a very broad spectrum, though as I mentioned before I would really like to work on my story telling/writing skills.

Explore all media” will let me improve my skills throughout all media, though I think doing this subject for the sake of it will be a little pointless, that’s when I had the idea to incorporate all three ideas I am interested into what at first, seemed a little messy.
What is the best way to tell a story? – this is the question I shall be basing my essay and research upon.

Thank you for reading 🙂

D&AD – Research and Development

“Break new grounds in beauty branding”

So, what is the issue with the beauty industry at the minute? Everything is my answer. You see a perfume advert, skinny photoshopped girl. You see a lipstick advert, skinny photoshopped girl. You see male skincare billboard, muscled photoshopped man, and so on. It’s a very broad, multi billion pound market that aims at everyone from young teenagers to the elderly, transgenders, males, bisexuals, females, tall people, black people, white people, asians, people with acne, wrinkles, hair-loss, pale people, overweight people, people with rosacea…. the list is endless. But what’s the problem with that?  Well, the problem is that 95% of the beauty industry is using the same advertising methods as you can see below:

What I get from the above is a bunch of photoshopped, unrealistic beauty standards that are constantly throwing this goal of a skinny, flawless appearance to real women and men who simply can’t achieve what they are claiming their products create.
This sort of advertisement is unhealthy, not only is it impossible to achieve (unless they produce photoshop in a tub) but it is constantly feeding the same images and the same standards to people, making them feel inferior because they don’t look like the models in the ads.

There is also the issue of race and gender within the beauty industry. Focusing first on gender, if you look on the shelves of any shop that sells/specialises in beauty products, you will see products for men and for women. Stereotypically there is no product for transgenders for example – whether the beauty industry realises it or not, they are ruling out so many different classes of people with different gender identities, sexual preferences etc with their closed minded packaging designs and ads.
It’s almost like this industry is in favour of a society that has the same goals in mind.
Looking at race, not only is there a lack of mixed ethnicity women and men in a lot of beauty ads, but the modelling industry who promote these individuals are also unfair when it comes to their black/asian/mixed ethnicity models. Take a look at the post below:

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After researching skincare products by scouring the shelves of my local Boots, Sainsbury’s and Superdrug stores I came to realise that almost every product is aimed at and advertised by caucasian men and women, also on the Boots Website there is a lack of skincare aimed at people of different ethnicity (other than caucasian). Also there is none that aren’t gender specific – males products look dark, bold and metallic (as a generalisation) as a pose to the feminine and elegant packaging of “Woman’s” products.

Beauty products are always blurting out claims as you’ve seen in the ads earlier in the post. “You’ll be more beautiful in days” “You’ll be skinny” blah blah are all just claims as the products themselves don’t work miracles, though it seems false advertisement isn’t a phrase this industry is in any way familiar with in any way.

I have taken a look at different websites for beauty brands and just as I suspected, they are filled with pretty pictures of ladies with perfect skin, hair and smiles. There is no section for men on a lot of these sites though if there is, it’ll be full of the same kinds of issues previously mentioned. I have screenshotted some of these sites below:

Tony Moly

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Estee Lauder
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Etude House
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The beauty industry is unsafe
Some may find it shocking to discover that the beauty products they are buying and using on their bodies are unregulated and in some cases, unsafe.
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Because of the lack of labelling regulations, there are little or no requirements for the information divulged to consumers meaning ingredients and the like can sometimes be missed out. Not only this, there is no stopping these companies from filling their products with body-harming substances and synthetic materials that aren’t good for the skin or the environment. For example, microbeads in facial exfoliators are being washed down drains and into our oceans, causing pollution and harm to the environment and fish in the sea. Not only this, but because they are synthetic instead of natural exfoliants such as coffee or sugar, they can create micro tears on the surface of the skin, this is the redness consumers see if they over exfoliate.

The environment isn’t taken into consideration either, lots of products contain not only synthetics harmful to humans, but animal “oils” and “secretions” that are harmful to the animal and in some cases, the animal is killed to obtain this. Though it’s sometimes a bi-product of the meat industry, it still can’t be justified by a lot of people.
Below are lotions and potions containing Sheep Placenta, Pig Collagen, Snail Secrete, Horse Oil and Stem Cells.

Looking at beauty standards in general, even outside the beauty industry there are a few companies who fight for the 99% of the human population that aren’t 5’10/6’2, skinny/muscly and look like models.  The gender specific marketing remains an issue it seems.
Below is a campaign from Victoria’s Secret and above that is one from Dove, Dove made this ad after VS did to contradict them and say “well actually, nobodies body can be labelled as perfect or imperfect.”

An article I came across that challenges these standards is completely brilliant and makes a very valid point. The intro goes”With her short hair and androgynous looks, Rain Dove doesn’t fit the mold of the typical Victoria’s Secret model – but she thinks it’s time for the lingerie retailer to break that mold.”
To see the whole article, CLICK HERE.

This concludes my research thus far.

Thank you for reading 🙂


D&AD Project Brief

D&AD New Blood Awards are an awarding body that offer the Pencil awards, one of the most well known, well respected awards in the design world today. Our brief is to pick a brief, any brief, as long as it is from a competition.
I have chosen D&AD, there are a total of 17 briefs to choose from in the new blood awards, below you can see a screenshot of the ones I narrowed it down to.
I was interested in the subject matter of a few other briefs but the reason I didn’t pick a lot of those is because I don’t like how we have to portray them, Dazed and Dr. Martians are a good example of this as they use video and radio, though I like video I’m not keen on the vine-like way it sounds like it needs to be presented. Same with radio, it interests me however I don’t feel I could do as well as some of the other briefs.
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Finally I had narrowed my search down to two briefs – Monotype and Design Bridge.
After careful consideration I decided to go for the Design Bridge brief, not because I’m a girl and I like makeup (okay maybe a little bit) but because I think it’s a well rounded brief that offers more opportunity and room to breathe than some of the others.

The Brief:
“Break new ground in beauty branding”
So basically we have been challenged to create a beauty brand and packaging that completely opposes the way beauty is seen and marketed today. The goal is to include anybody into our brand’s target audience and exclude all stereotypes.

In the following posts I shall be researching this topic and beginning to create a response.
Thankyou for reading and enjoy the coming project 🙂


Self Directed Final Brief

Here begins another new project for the Contextual Studies Module. We have been given the challenge of doing… well, whatever we like which can be a scarier prospect than actually being given a brief. This research is to be concluded with a 3,000 word essay and a visual response of our choice.
I think the underlying message of this brief is “find yourself”… something I have tried before, failing epically of course. I’ve been putting this project off for a while now and I think the issue I’m having is that I don’t know my style properly, nor do I know where my allegiance lies when it comes to Design, Photography, Creative Writing and Art/Illustration… Though I guess this is a good opportunity to find out.

Alas, the most difficult part of any project. Because of my scattered nature I figured there would be no better place to start than something abstract and disorderly. I hope you enjoy my response to this project. Let us begin.

Inspiration and the collection of material is something I do frequently so I have decided to take a look at this to begin with. I have listed some sources of inspiration below, I use most of these on a regular basis:

. Art (all forms) is one of the best things to look at as it contains composition,color, and expression which is good for jogging the mind.
. Conversations with people on and offline Talking and discussing ideas is one of my favourite ways to elaborate on an idea/come up with new ones. Never underestimate the power of communication and opinion.
. Television whether it be a show or the adverts in between.
. Magazine Design
 is inspirational both because of the magazines content (you can choose a specific magazine that has content of your interest), and the layout of the zine itself.
. Music stimulates the brain in so many different ways. The lyrics, composure or tone can inspire you, even listening to music when your trying to think can be helpful for some (myself included).
. Architecture
is good way to see solutions for space and structure.
. Works of Fiction are often “out there” – helping to inspire both your grammar, word use and idea stimulation.
. Works of Non-fiction are a good place if your looking to learn something new/improve your knowledge of a certain subject.
Nature is our foundation and is one of the easiest forms of inspiration to access.

Drawing inspiration from around the world is something I am interested in also – it helps me see how the rest of the world perceive different aspects of art, fashion, design etc. To read my posts on each separate area of Earth, please select a post from the list below:
Central America
European Union
Middle East
Eastern Europe
North America
The Carribbean

Online Methods of collecting inspiration:


The above are just a couple of the many out there, they are basically online apps with the purpose of being a ‘hub’ of sorts for any images/quotes/art/design work etc you might want to collect. The one out of these I use is Pinterest, my account has over 10.7k pins… Which is terrible and obsessive to say the least. Honestly Pinterest is my holy grail of inspiration, I use this when I need inspiration for anything at all, whether it be makeup, fashion, diet tips, recipes, design, art etc. That is the beauty of these applications, they allow ‘hoarders’ like me to have anything and everything in one place whether it be work related or otherwise.

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Above is my Pinterest page. As you can see there are many different boards that contain things I like – none of these have anything to do with each other and that’s the beauty of this app.

Pinterest and the other sites I mentioned are a very low key, organised way of collection. On the other hand, there is the action of hoarding that can be classed (in some cases) a way of collecting what’s of interest to you/what inspires you. As you can see above, hoarding is a more messy, less work focused way of keeping everything you like in one place.
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Hoarding in this manner looks somewhat unappealing to someone like me as I love everything to be in once place, but to be organised at the same time. This site almost made hoarding look like an art form , it reminded me somewhat of a museum or an art gallery and that’s when it hit me – places like galleries, exhibitions and museums are essentially giant hoarding closets put on display.

Looking at Museums, they are like gigantic cabinets/closets containing anything imaginable from any place in the world. Almost like the whole map of the world packed into a small (or not so small) area. I like the idea of the world being in one place, it makes it’s entirety seem somewhat smaller and accessible to the public – curators are the ones who put together these wondrous locations and I think it must be a very interesting job to be able to make displays of anything they like. Below are some visuals of museums:


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A smaller version of a more personalised ‘museum’ is something called a wonder cabinet or “cabinet of curiosities”. Basically wonder cabinets are exactly what they sound like – little cabinets filled with what people deem valuable/interesting/wondrous. There can be anything like creatures, paintings, artefacts, toys, makeup, statues, religious icons or wings in these cabinets – it depends on what the person is collecting. Something that seems to be somewhat consistent throghout a lot of wondercabinets (and museums too) is

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As for what I’d put in my wonder cabinet… there would be a lot of things haha. In a different post I was having the similar issue of where to start so I created a list of things/topics that appeal to me.. here is that list again, only amended and containing a few bold words. The worlds in  bold font represent the topics I feel might be good to look into. Whether this be to fill a wonder cabinet, write about or draw… whatever I decide to do.

Rock/Metal music
Wispy stuff
The world
Curly hair
Angels/mythical beings
Digital Art
Creative writing/stories
Drained colour
Black and white
League of Legends (ehehehehe)
Death (not a liking, just a curiosity and no, I’m not suicidal lol)
Night sky
Candy floss

From the small ammount of research I have come up with the following:
Explore all media – Pick a topic and portray it several different ways using creative media of my choice, eg sound, video, photo, art, writing, design and maybe typography.
Explore what is dearest to people/what makes a person
People’s personal wonder cabinets/how life experiences changes what’s inside them
Finding myself
Life story/short biographies
short story of a thing/person that’s actually a thing?
earth – everything in one place
Exploration of the unknown
How different people see the same subject/topic
Exploration of emotions
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An Idea I had is to write my essay as a story more than an essay, this excludes the visual outcome for the topic I decide to do of course. It’s a good way to make the essay interesting and easily readable, also writing is something that interests me greatly so it will be good to both practice and include this in my project.

Thats is all for now:)