Graphic Design Principles 1

Fall 2017 | COMD1100_D108 | Prof. Spevack

Class 15 | Project 3

October 23, 2017

What’s DUE?

  • New blog post: Value-Added Portraits: Phase 1.
  • Phase 4 post for Project #2.  If you don’t post Phase 4: Deliver, you will not receive a grade for the project.

Materials needed:

  • Sketchbook, 9×12″ Bristol, pencils, eraser, knife/scissors, ruler/T-square, drafting tape.

Lecture

Review Vocabulary From Last Class

  • Elements: Value
  • Principles: Emphasis, Focal Point, Contrast
  • PLUS: Compositional Flow, Open and Closed Value and Scale
    • Compositional Flow: Flow is about movement and direction, and leading the eye from one part of a composition to another in the direction you want it to move. Starting with your dominant element, which should be the entry point into your composition, you then provide directional cues for the eye to follow throughout your composition.
    • Closed-Value: Values are limited by the boundaries of shapes and clearly isolate individual parts of the composition. This type of composition could create dramatic mood through contrasting values.
    • Open-Value: Values cross shape boundaries, integrating parts with adjoining areas and unifying the composition. This type of composition could create a mysterious fog or haze using closely related values.
    • Proportion: Relationship between parts of a whole or related units.
      • Scale: Associations of size, related to a constant size, unit of measure, relative whole (such as a the human body, or picture plane)

LAB 1 – Project #3 Discover

Class 14 Lab

  • Value Range Research
  • Value Scale
  • Photoshoot: get your photo taken by the professor (for use in the next project)
    IF you miss this class and didn’t get your photograph taken, contact the professor BEFORE THE NEXT CLASS.

LAB 2  – Project #3 Define

Collages

Goal: Create two 6″ collage compositions that use COMPOSITIONAL FLOW to direct the viewer to a clear FOCAL POINT through the use of CONTRAST and changes in VALUE. (past student examples)

  • Using the printouts of your portrait, cut apart your portrait into a variety of squares or rectangles.
  • Rearrange and experiment with your portrait pieces until your develop (2) unified, but ABSTRACT, 6″x6″ compositions as follows:
    • (1) Narrow Value Range: either high-key or low-key
    • (1) Broad Value Range
  • In each composition:
    • Create a focal point wherein one area or element is emphasized through contrast in scale and value.
    • Use Movement / Compositional Flow to clearly direct the viewer’s eye to the focal point.
    • Use Value steps to support transitions from one compositional element to another.
    • Examine the lines and shapes that make up your portrait and create new shapes and lines that convey a certain mood.
  • DO NOT GLUE THEM DOWN YET!

NEXT

  • Take a photo of  your finished and approved collages, just for future reference.
  • Make sure each piece of your composition is properly marked on the back, indicating the TOP and numbered from left to right, top to bottom.
  • Position each piece in your collage composition on a piece of paper. Use a small bit of tape on the back to adhere your pieces to the paper.
  • Keep everything clean and neat.

Homework

  1. Complete VALUE RANGE RESEARCH:
  2. Complete (1) Narrow Value Range Collage (either high-key or low-key) and (1) Broad Value Range Collage using your portrait printouts, refer to Project #3: Phase 2. Come ready to work on your paintings.

Materials needed for this project:

  • white and black gouache paints
  • sable-type watercolor brushes (do not buy brushes for acrylic or oil)
    • FLAT:  1/2″ angle, #4
    • ROUND: #1, #5
  • two water containers (yogurt cups, soda bottles with tops cut off, soup cans)
  • palette (round 10-well)
  • cotton rags (old white t-shirts or scraps)
Download PDF

COMD Class 14 | Value & Emphasis

October 18, 2017

IMPORTANT NOTE: IN-PERSON CLASS IS CANCELLED DUE TO A FAMILY EMERGENCY.
PLEASE REVIEW AND COMPLETE THE CLASS OUTLINE BELOW.

What’s DUE?

Peer Critique

  • Review all Animated Mashups from the class blog.
  • Choose 3 posts with the least number of comments and provide feedback to each.
  • These should be full, thoughtful critiques of your peer’s good effort. Be thorough and helpful. If you have ideas about how the work can be improved, share them!
  • Use the Vocabulary for Project #2.

Photo-shoot

  • During the Peer Critique, please come and get your photo taken by the professor (for use in the next project)
  • IF you miss this class and didn’t get your photograph taken, contact the professor BEFORE THE NEXT CLASS.

Lecture

The Elements: basic components used as part of any composition, independent of the medium.

  • Value:Signifies the relative differences of light and dark
    • Achromatic: Value with the absence of hue (color) and saturation (intensity).
    • Chromatic: Value demonstrated by a given hue.
    • Grayscale: The full range of values simplified into a graduated scale.
    • Low-Key: When the values of an image are predominately dark
    • High-Key: When the values of an image are predominately light
    • Narrow Range: When the values congregate around the dark, middle, or light part of the grayscale.
    • Broad Range: When the values are spread over the dark, middle, or light part of the grayscale.
    • Shadow: Dark area of an object as a result of a disruption of the light source.
    • Highlight: Portion of an object that receives the greatest amount of direct light
    • Chiaroscuro/Tenebrism: Forceful use of contrasting lights and darks, creating a dramatic mood.

The Principles: basic assumptions that guide the design practice.

  • Emphasis: The special attention or importance given to one part of a composition. Emphasis can be achieved through placement, contrast, size, etc.
    • Dominance/Hierarchy: The expression of visual and conceptual order that communicates degrees of importance of the various parts of a composition. This can also be achieved through placement, contrast, size, etc.
    • Focal Point: The elements or objects on which the viewer’s attention is focused.
  • Contrast: Occurs when elements are unrelated or dissimilar in value, size, shape, etc. Increasing contrasts can create dominance.

References:

LAB

Value Range Research

  1. Take a short walk around City Tech (or any location of your choice).
  2. Using your camera or camera phone*, compose 2 photographs with the following qualities:
    • (1) predominately within the high-key value range
    • (1) predominately within the low-key value range
  3. If you have the ability to shoot in grayscale, please do.
  4. Designate a new section of your sketchbook and write ‘Value-Added Portraits’.
  5. Compose a minimum 2-paragraph description, with specific references to the images, indicating how the key sets the mood of the composition. Also notice and report how the forms in the composition create highlight and shadow relationships; some may be abrupt, others may have a gradation of value from light to dark. How does this contribute expressive quality (mystery, drama, success, joy, etc) of the compositions?

* If you don’t have a camera, please partner with another student who does.

Value Scale

Complete the Achromatic Value Scale using pencils

  • On the handout provided, create 4 scales starting with 2 steps and ending with 9 steps ranging from black to white in even, progressive increments.
  • Your 9-step value scale should have black, low dark, dark, high dark, mid-value, low light, high light, and white.
Achromatic Value Scale

Achromatic Value Scale

Homework

Complete the following before next class:

VALUE RANGE RESEARCH:

  • Create a new blog post called Value-Added Portraits: Phase 1.
  • Post your writing and 2 final images (high key and low key) to the class blog.
  • Add a gallery with your two images. Don’t forget to caption them High-Key or Low-Key
  • Refine your writing and add it to the post.
  • Include the hours that you worked on this part of the project.
  • Comment on at least 3 other student’s posts.

PROJECT #2

  • Finish Phase 4 feedback/documentation posts for Project #2.  If you don’t post Phase 4: Deliver, you will not receive a grade for the project.

Materials needed:

  • Download and PRINTOUT 5 laser prints of your portrait ((DOWNLOAD HERE))
    • IMPORTANT NOTE: IF you missed this class and didn’t get your photograph taken, contact the professor BEFORE THE NEXT CLASS.
  • Bring: Sketchbook, 9×12″ Bristol, pencils, eraser, knife/scissors, ruler/T-square, drafting tape.
  • Painting supplies needed for this project (DO NOT BUY EXPENSIVE PROFESSIONAL MATERIALS):
    • white and black gouache paints
    • sable-type watercolor brushes (do not buy brushes for acrylic or oil)
      • FLAT:  1/2″ angle, #4
      • ROUND: #1, #5
    • two water containers (yogurt cups, soda bottles with tops cut off, soup cans)
    • palette (round 10-well)
    • cotton rags (old white t-shirts or scraps)

 

Download PDF

Class 13: Mashup Export

October 16, 2017

What’s needed for this class:

DUE:

  1. Completed Animated Mashup. We will adjust/add audio and export in class today.
  2. Field Trip Reflection. Post to the Class Blog and comment on 1 other student’s post. See homework from Class 12.

Materials Needed:

  1. Access to two audio files to add to your mashup or use the files provided.
  2.  Dropbox or Google Drive account access to store your finished files

Discussion:

  • Field Trip Reflections
  • Anything else that you’d like to share?

Lab: Add Sound and Export

Add sound and adjust your animation:

  • If you haven’t already done so, import two pieces of music, one with staccato rhythm and one with legato rhythm: Summertime and Another One Bites the Dust. Download these files to your working folder or desktop – or use two of your own.
  • Import your audio files into the audio tracks at the bottom of the timeline.
  • Your audio will be much longer than the rest of your 10 second animation.
  • You can drag and resize the audio layers to hear different parts of each song.
  • If needed, adjust the work area to contain the animation in the Timeline panel.
  • Additionally, you can adjust your animation to sync better with the audio.
  • We will do this together in class, but you can review using this tutorial.

Exporting Your Animation for Web

  • Preview your animation and check the frame rate to make sure it’s 12 fps.
  • If needed, adjust the work area to contain the animation in the Timeline panel
  • Choose File > Export > Render Video.
  • In the Render Video dialog box, enter a name for the video (firstinitiallastname-mashup).
  • Click the Select Folder button, and navigate to the location for the exported files.
    • To create a folder to contain your exported file, select the Create New Subfolder option and enter a name for the subfolder.
  • Choose Adobe Media Encoder from the menu below the Location section of the Render Video dialog box.
  • Format: H.264
  • Range: Work Area (Renders the frames selected by the work area bar in the Timeline panel)
  • Preset: High Quality
  • Size: Document Size
  • Frame Rate: Document Frame Rate (12fps)
  • Field Order: Progressive
  • Aspect: Document
  • Render Screenshot
  • Click Render. This will save an mp4 file to the folder you specified above.
  • Save your all your file(s) to Dropbox or GDrive or flash for backup.
  • Finally, upload your saved mp4 file to Dropbox or Google Drive and copy the link location.
  • Follow the demo presented in class or refer to this tutorial for help.

 Documentation and Feedback

  • Create a new blog post called Sound Visualizations: Phase 3.
  • Add a link to your mashup animation (on GDrive or Dropbox).
  • Write a short description of your animation.
  • Include the hours that you worked on this part of the project.
  • Don’t forget to comment on at least 3 other student’s posts. These should be full, thoughtful critiques of your peer’s good effort. Be thoughtful and helpful. If you have ideas about how the work can be improved, share them!

Homework

  1. All parts of Project #2 are due!
Download PDF

Class 12 | Field Trip!

October 12, 2017

Field Trip to BRIC!

  • We will leave from the classroom at exactly 2:30pm and travel together to BRIC Gallery.
  • IF YOU WILL BE LATE, MEET US THERE.
  • We will be touring the exhibition “Brooklyn Photographs” and hopefully a tour of the broadcast facilities.

Homework

  1. Field Trip Reflection: Create a post on the Class Blog about this field trip and comment on 1 other student’s post.
    • Research the theme of the exhibition. Refer to the BRIC website and the exhibition handouts.
    • Post Title: Field Trip to BRIC
    • Post Content: Choose one work in the exhibition. Note the title, artist and medium(s). Is there anything about this work that you can relate to? Is there anything that surprises you or makes you think or feel differently? Include the image you took at the gallery. Include a caption — artist and title of work
    • Comment: On at lease 1 other student’s Field Trip post.
  2. Your animation is due next class, Monday. If you need help, see me during my office hour Thursday 5-6pm in N1127 or N1122.
Download PDF

Class 11 | Animation

October 5, 2017

What’s due for this class?

  1. Completed Animated Mashup Prep
    • Find your scanned hi-res file for animation in this Dropbox folder or follow the class guidelines for scanning your inked mashup.
    • Complete PREP in Photoshop following notes from class demo and class outline.
    • Save to your Dropbox and/or portable drive.
    • NOTE: if you are having trouble, we will review this process in class.
  2. Materials needed:
    • Flash/jump drive and/or access to Dropbox/Google Drive with your prepped image files.
    • We will animate and add audio to your digital mashup file today. Come prepared to work.

 Lab / Demo

Animation Prep in Photoshop:

  • Open your scan file in Photoshop, rename it  FirstInitalLastNameMashupPrep.jpg and save it to the same folder.
  • Make the following adjustments:
    • Image size: 72 dpi, 1280 wide x “XXXX” high (the height will depend the size of your mashup scan)
    • Color Mode: RGB
    • Image > Image Rotation to horizontal/landscape, if needed.
  • SAVE AGAIN (Make sure you don’t save over your original hi-res file!!!)
  • Create a new file in Photoshop:
    • File > New
    • Image Preset (HDV/HDTV720) / Image size: 72dpi, 1280 wide x 720 high
    • Color Mode: RGB
  • Save the file FirstInitalLastNameMashup.psd to your project folder.
  • Select All > Copy your FirstInitalLastNameMashupPrep.jpg and Paste into your new file, FirstInitalLastNameMashup.psd
  • With the pasted layer selected, press Command+T (Edit > Free Transform).
    • A bounding box will appear around your image.
    • Grab the lower right square and hold down the Shift key (to restrain proportions) while dragging toward the center of the box.
    • Drag until the bottom of the image lines up with the bottom of the Canvas.
  • Save your file.
  • Next complete the same procedure we practiced in class. Divide up your image into individual square layer.
  • Using the rectangle marquee tool “copy” (Command+C) and “paste in place” (Command+Shift+V) each pattern square on a new layer for use in your animation.

Animation in Photoshop:

Guidelines:

  • Create a short animation and audio mashup using two songs with Staccato and Legato rhythms. Use Summertime and Another One Bites the Dust, if you wish or two songs of your own. The TWO  songs you choose should demonstrate, very clearly, these two rhythms and snippets of each should blend together seamlessly.
  • Minimum length: 5 second loop
  • Animation should start and/or end with your completed composition or a blank screen.
  • Review this animating in Photoshop tutorial to get a brief overview of the techniques we will be using.
  • Watch this video to learn about converting to Smart Objects and animating with transform properties.
  • Here’s another video with more detail about keyframe animation using transform properties.

Steps to get set up:

  1. In the Layers window, select each layer that you created in the Prep section and convert each to a Smart Object.
    • Layer > Smart Objects > Convert to Smart Object
  2. Choose Window > Timeline. Press Create Video Timeline button.
  3. Adjust the frame rate to 12fps (frames per second)
    • Click on the upper-right corner of the Timeline window.
    • Choose Set Timeline Frame Rate
    • Type 12 in the box
  4. Adjust the length of the timeline to 10 seconds (ie: how long your animation will be)
    • Select the first purple layer in the timeline and drag the end of it out until it reads 10:00 seconds.
    • Do this for all your layers.
    • Press the play button and think about how your animation could look.
    • Take a few minutes to draw out a storyboard, if you like.
  5. Import your audio files into the audio tracks at the bottom of the timeline.
    • Your audio will be much longer than the rest of your 10 second animation, so you will need to drag the end of the green layers so that they fits within the length of your animation.
    • You can still drag and resize the audio layers to hear different parts of each song.
  6. Animate your pattern squares using keyframes to animate layer properties. Follow the videos above and in-class demos.
    • We will do this together in class!

Homework

  • No class on Monday. Work on your animations and post any problems, issues, questions about the process to the Student Blog or contact me directly with questions. We will export and edit audio the following Monday.
  • NEXT CLASS: Thursday, October 12th will be a field trip.
  • We will leave from the classroom at exactly 2:30pm and travel together to BRIC Gallery.
  • We will be touring the exhibition “Brooklyn Photographs

Download PDF

Class 10 | Crit & Mashup Animation Prep

October 2, 2017

What’s due for this class?

  1. DUE: Final inked version of your Pattern Mashup on a piece of 9″x12″ bristol board, based on your finalized preparatory compositions. Come prepared to present your work!
  2. Post to the blog.
    • Create a new blog post called Sound Visualizations: Phase 2.
    • Take photos of your finished Inked Pattern Mashup and add them to the post (make sure it is well-lit and in focus.)
    • Include the hours that you worked on this part of the project.
    • Don’t forget to comment on at least 3 other student’s posts.
  3. Materials needed: Flash/jump drive and/or access to Dropbox/Google Drive

Grades

  • If you turned in your work on the date due you will find a comment and a grade in your post: Urban Artifacts: Phase 4.
  • If you turned in your work late, please confirm that you have posted your final blog post Urban Artifacts: Phase 4. Your grade will be posted shortly.
  • If you did not complete your final blog post Urban Artifacts: Phase 4, your project is incomplete and you will receive an F grade. Please see me.
  • Refer to the Project Rubric and grading policy “Understanding Your Grade.”
  • You have until Midterm to rework Project #1 and improve your grade.
  • If you have any concerns or questions, ask!

Critique

Present your finished inked mashups to the class.

  • Present and analyze your finished work in terms of concept, craft, what you learned, and the design process.
  • State your name, your understanding of the project goals (ie: what is the point?), which parts are successful and which parts need more work.
  • Your peers and the professor will provide feedback. You will have an opportunity to revise your work based on the feedback and improve your grade.
  • When critiquing other student’s work, clearly describe what works and what doesn’t work using the project vocabulary: Line, Rhythm, Repetition, Variety, Pattern, Unity, Grid, Rule of Thirds, Economy

Discussion

Examples:

Lab: Scanning and preparing digital files

SCAN:

  1. Create a folder on your drive called FirstInitalLastNameMashup.
  2. Scan your finished inked Pattern Mashup (300dpi, grayscale, jpg).
  3. Save/rename this hi-res file FirstInitalLastNameMashupHIRES.jpg to the folder you just created.
  4. If  you completed and submitted your completed Inked Mashup in class, find your scan HERE.

DEMO PREP in Photoshop:

  • We will do this together in class. TAKE NOTES, so that you can complete the work independently for the next class.
  • Use this file to experiment with this technique.
  • Using the rectangle marquee tool we will “copy” (Command+C) and “paste in place” (Command+Shift+V) each pattern square on a new layer for use in your animation.

Your Mashup Prep in Photoshop:

  • Open your scan file in Photoshop, rename it  FirstInitalLastNameMashupPrep.jpg and save it to the same folder.
  • Make the following adjustments:
    • Image size: 72 dpi, 1280 wide x “XXXX” high (the height will depend the size of your mashup scan)
    • Color Mode: RGB
    • Image > Image Rotation to horizontal/landscape, if needed.
  • SAVE AGAIN (Make sure you don’t save over your original hi-res file!!!)
  • Create a new file in Photoshop:
    • File > New
    • Image Preset (HDV/HDTV720) / Image size: 72dpi, 1280 wide x 720 high
    • Color Mode: RGB
  • Save the file FirstInitalLastNameMashup.psd to your project folder.
  • Select All > Copy your FirstInitalLastNameMashupPrep.jpg and Paste into your new file, FirstInitalLastNameMashup.psd
  • With the pasted layer selected, press Command+T (Edit > Free Transform).
    • A bounding box will appear around your image.
    • Grab the lower right square and hold down the Shift key (to restrain proportions) while dragging toward the center of the box.
    • Drag until the bottom of the image lines up with the bottom of the Canvas.
  • Save your file.
  • Next complete the same procedure we practiced in class. Divide up your image into individual square layers.
  • Using the rectangle marquee tool “copy” (Command+C) and “paste in place” (Command+Shift+V) each pattern square on a new layer for use in your animation.

Homework

  1. Complete Animated Mashup Prep
    • Find your scanned hi-res file for animation in this Dropbox folder.
    • Complete PREP in Photoshop following notes from class demo and above.
    • Save to your Dropbox and/or portable drive.
  2. We will animate and add audio to your digital mashup file next class. Come prepared to work.
  3. NOTE: If you didn’t finish your inked mashup, please contact me ASAP!
Download PDF

Class 9 | Inked Mashup Work

September 28, 2017

What’s needed for this class?

  1. Project #2: Phase 2 > Staccato / Legato Pattern Mashup Prep –  including layout grid preparatory drawings
  2. Materials: Inking pens, 9×12″ bristol, ruler, t-square, triangle

Check Your Grade

  1. If you have any problems accessing your grade or issues with the grade you received, please let me know immediately.
  2. Check the Project Rubric to see how your project was graded. You have until Midterm (Class 15) to rework and resubmit your work for a better grade.

Critique

  • All students will present their Mashup work in progress.

Lab

  • Work independently to finish your Inked Pattern Mashup.
  • Meet with Professor to make sure you are on track for success in this course.

Homework

  1. DUE: Phase 2: Define > Inked Mashup 
    • Final inked version of your Pattern Mashup on 9″x12″ bristol board. Come prepared to present your work!
  2. DUE: Documentation and Feedback
    • Create a new blog post called Sound Visualizations: Phase 2.
    • Take a photo or scan of your finished Inked Pattern Mashup and add it to the post (make sure it is well-lit and in focus.)
    • Include the hours that you worked on this part of the project.
    • Don’t forget to comment on at least 1 other student’s post.
Download PDF

Class 8 | Pattern Mashups

September 25, 2017

What’s needed for this class?

  1. Project #2: Phase 1
  2. Completed Project #2: Phase 2 > Staccato / Legato Pattern Mashup Prep
  3. Materials: Sketchbook and variety of pencils — plus inking pens, 9×12″ bristol.

Anything to Share?

  • Video, sound, poster, game, app, or anything interesting that you saw on the way to school?
  • Reminder: Field trip forms are due for students under 18!

Lecture

Peer Critique

  • Divide into groups of three
  • Present your refined Staccato / Legato Pattern drawings
  • When critiquing your peer’s work, remember to identify which patterns are successful AND WHY THEY ARE SUCCESSFUL and which patterns are not successful AND WHY THEY ARE NOT SUCCESSFUL.
  • The goal is to help your peers successfully realize this part of the project and “solve” the design problems presented.
  • Try to use of the vocabulary: Line, Rhythm, Repetition, Variety, Pattern, Organic, Geometric and Movement

Lab

Pattern Mashup Work

Once you have created at least 4 strong pattern squares (2 Staccato and 2 Legato) move on to the next step in Phase 2: Define > Inked Mashup.

Before the end of class

  • Review Phase 2: Define > Inked Mashup guidelines. Create a layout grid.
  • Complete at least 3 drawings in your sketchbook to explore how you will arrange your final inked Pattern Mashup. These are NOT thumbnails. These are preparatory drawings that you will use to complete your final inked compositions.
  • Ask the Professor to review your work. If the work is approved, you may begin work on your final inked Mashup on 9″x12″ bristol board.

Homework

  1. DUE: Completed preparatory drawings that explore how you will arrange your final inked Pattern Mashup. We will work on and finish the final inked mashups on bristol next class.
  2. Materials: Sketchbook and variety of pencils — plus inking pens, 9×12″ bristol.
  3. Contact me with questions.
Download PDF

COMD Class 7 | Line, Rhythm & Pattern

September 19, 2017

Materials Need for This Class:

  • Sketchbook
  • Pencils (wide range from 4h to 4B)
  • Inking pens
  • 9×12″ Bristol

Due this class:

  • Post your Project #2: Phase 1 writing to the class blog. Comment on at least 1 other student’s posts.

Review / Share

  • Review Elements & Principles for this project
  • Do you have anything to Share?

Demo

  • Thumbnail sketches How to / Why Video
  • Thumbnail sketching is important, because it’s a beginning place for brainstorming ideas. It allows you to quickly get your ideas down on paper. This should happen before you jump on the computer and go with the first concept that comes to mind. Thumbnail sketches are part of the Design Process, Phase 1: Discover. You can then refine your best sketches in Phase 2: Define. If an idea or message doesn’t work well in a sketch then it’s unlikely to work in a final design.

Lab: Define

Staccato / Legato Pattern Mashup PREP

Take out a soft pencil #3B and your sketchbook.

Rhythmic Line Test 1: Listen to this song: Another One Bites the Dust and draw a line representing its rhythm across your first sheet of paper. Repeat and refine until you get a variety of interesting lines. How would you describe these lines?

Rhythmic Line Test 2: Listen to this song: Summertime and draw a line representing its rhythm across your second sheet paper. Repeat and refine until you get a variety of interesting lines. How would you describe these lines?

Patterns Squares: Now create at least 12 thumbnails: 6 for Staccato and 6 for Legato. Using your rhythmic line tests as a guide, create 6 patterns that represents STACCATO and 6 patterns that represents LEGATO.

  • Continue to refine these patterns. Try varying the line weight (thick and thin) and the spacing (tight and wide) between the lines. Let the rhythm of the music dictate the look and feel of your patterns.
  • Once you have created at least 4 strong pattern squares (2 Staccato and 2 Legato) move on to the next step: Inked Mashup > Create a Layout Grid

Homework

  1. Complete Staccato / Legato Pattern Mashup PREP and Layout Grid (Phase 2: Define).
  2. Materials needed next class: Sketchbook and variety of pencils — plus inking pens, 9×12″ bristol.
Download PDF

COMD Class 6 | Line & Rhythm

September 18, 2017

Due this Class:

  • Your final post (Phase 4: Deliver) for Project #1
  • NOTE: You will receive a grade and comments from the Professor on this post. If you do not create this post, you will not receive a grade for the project.

Materials Need for This Class:

  • Sketchbook
  • Pencils (wide range from 4h to 4B)
  • A song or piece of music that you like & headphones

Discussion

The Elements: basic components used as part of any composition, independent of the medium.

  1. Line: An series of points, which has length and direction. It can be the connection between two points, the space between shapes, or the path of a moving point. A closed line creates a shape.

The Principles: basic assumptions that guide the design practice.

  1. Rhythm: Is a repeated pattern, such as what we hear in music. In different art forms, it can be a very complex interrelationship or a regular, steady beat.
    1. Repetition: Repeating a sequence; occurring more than a few times. In design, repetition can create visual consistency and a sense of unity.
    2. Pattern: Unbroken repetition, the repeating of an line, object or symbol.
    3. Variety: Visual rhythm is often punctuated with variations or changes in color, texture, or form. Creating variety is easy. Too much variety can lead to chaos and confusion for the viewer. A designer must effectively use pace and spacing to create rhythm and achieve unity in a composition.
    4. Monotony: Without variety or change, excessive repetition (or no repetition) can lead to uninteresting compositions.

References:

Lab 1: Play

Line Networks : Monotony and Variety

Create two types of pencil drawings in your sketchbook.

The first drawing will demonstrate a lack of variety or monotony by visualizing a piece of music with very little variety and contrast. The second drawing will visualize a song or series of songs that have variety and obvious changes in meter, pitch, and volume. Both drawings will use a network of repeated horizontal, vertical, and diagonal lines to demonstrate visual pattern, repetition and rhythm. If the music ends before your drawing is finished — REPEAT.

Monotony Line Network (LISTEN MP3): 

  • To begin this drawing, simply create a freehand line from top edge of the page to bottom or in whatever direction you “hear”.
  • Continue creating the “vibrations” of this line until the entire page is filled with lines eminating off of this original line. Once you get to the edge of the paper, turn the paper 90 degrees and create a grid– drawing intersecting lines across the same page.
  • Working slowly, with intention, try to keep your lines consistent, close together, and evenly spaced (this is hard– nearly impossible, actually). Create several versions of this drawing in your sketchbook, using one type of pencil for the whole drawing- perhaps a soft pencil (2B or 4B).
  • Your final drawing should look like a grid, woven fabric, or network of lines.

Variety Line Network (LISTEN MP3)

  • As soon as you hear the music, consider the sound you hear and visualize it as a line.
  • Choose a pencil (hard or soft) and start drawing lines– don’t draw anything recognizable.
  • Let your pencil move in one direction, until you hear the sound change. At that moment, change the direction/angle/length/weight of your line.
  • Notice how easy it is to create variety and how quickly your drawing become cluttered, chaotic, and confused. Let this happen.
  • Create several versions of this drawing in your sketchbook, using a variety of line weights and styles (thick, thin, medium, short, long, broken). Choose to make a mark based what you “hear”.  For example, if you hear a low tone, perhaps your marks should become thicker, denser or darker.
  • In some parts of your drawing you may make lines so dense that groups of lines become solid shapes. In other areas, your lines may be light, thin, and sparse.
  • Take the entire page into consideration– observing figure/ground, unity, and economy, even if these principles are lacking.

In your sketchbook you should complete at least:

  • 2 Monotony Line Networks
  • 2 Variety Line Networks

Lab 2: Project #2 | Sound Visualizations

Phase 1: Discover

Listening

  • Listen to your favorite piece of music with headphones
  • Imagine how the sounds would look if they were lines or shapes and consider how they relate to each other. Do they repeat? Do you hear repeated patterns and an overall rhythm?

Writing

  • Compose a minimum 2-paragraph description of the sounds you hear.
  • Describe them in terms of pattern, line, shape, variety. Consider how some sounds repeat to create rhythm.
  • Are some sounds rough or sharp and other smooth and flowing?
  • Do any of these observations affect how you understand the meaning of the music or the intention of the composer/songwriter/artist?

Documentation and Feedback

  • Create a new blog post called Sound Visualizations: Phase 1.
  • Add a link to the piece of music via  YouTube, SoundCloud, or similar.
  • Refine your writing and add it to the post.
  • Include the hours that you worked on this part of the project.
  • Don’t forget to comment on at least 1 other student’s post.

Homework

  1. Post Project #2: Phase 1 to the class blog. Comment on at least 1 other student’s post. See Guidelines for specifics.
  2. Materials Needed for next class: Sketchbook with and variety of pencils — plus inking pens, 9×12″ bristol.
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