Digital Me – Finishing Touches

Our final deadline for the Digital Me project is on Tuesday so I am just adding the final finishing touches to all of my submissions before then.

I am feeling confident with the way I am heading and I have not got a lot to do before handing in my finished work for the deadline on Tuesday. I have completed my Research and Development PDF for Persuasion and am currently finishing off the one for Penguin. I have already got a Research and Development PDF for branding that I created last year after completing the Brandworld project, so I have just got to add and change this one accordingly to my further development since then and my newer final outcomes.

For the finishing touches of my CV, online portfolio, PDF portfolio, I have edited some details to add to the overall final look of the finished pieces. After a tutorial with Neil, we spoke about how underlining titles, historically, was not considered needed after ‘bold‘ was invented. Although I have decided against using the bold version of Playfair Display as I think it ruins the beauty of the contrast between the thick and thin lines in the lettering of the typeface, I have removed the underlines of the titles and the overall look of the CV is much cleaner without them. I have done the same thing on my PDF portfolio by removing the underlines of the titles. Removing these underlines have actually added to the consistency of my overall project, because I noticed that the website does not have underlined titles. There is enough definition between the title and the body text because they are different typefaces – the title is serif and the body text is sans serif, the title is in orange and the body text is black, and there is also a big size difference between the two.

To match the removal of all my title underlines, I have edited my ‘I’m Amber‘ logo slightly as well. I have removed the underline below the text, but kept the line above as the image of me is sat, resting on it. I have adjusted the weight of the upper line to make up for it’s staying though.

Digital Me – Further Development

Since last week, I have made small developments to all three of my main pieces: the CV, the online portfolio and the PDF portfolio.

In the PDF portfolio, I have added in the text and the images to each of the project pages, although one or two are still missing that I want to add in. I have made sure that they are the same images used in my online portfolio and that the brief and solution are the same too. I have added in navigation buttons on every project so that you can flick through the projects using arrow buttons and also return back to the home page. After a tutorial, I have increased the text size by 1 or 2 points because it was suggested that it was perhaps just a little too small. At the the end of my portfolio, I have added an extra page which is a ‘Contact’ page and also has an ‘About Me’ paragraph, similar to the CV.

For the CV, I have added in work experience and also written the ‘About Me’ section. Like the PDF portfolio, I have developed my CV so that it is now interactive too. It has icons which link to my social media profiles: Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. I decided to exclude Facebook because my account is a personal one and I think it is important to keep my CV purely professional and not mix up my personal life with work. I have also added a link to my online portfolio so that employers looking at my CV can get to my work with one easy click.

On my online portfolio, I have gone ahead and removed the ‘Home’ page as I decided that it was not needed – my online portfolio now opens simply with the text saying, “Hello and Welcome!…“. After originally arranging the images on each of the project pages one after each other in a straight line as individual images down the page. I have now arranged them in a more designed layout (image below: I have taken a screenshot from one of the project pages as an example). I have also spread ‘The Solution’ paragraph between these images because I felt that there was too much text to begin with at the top of each project.

screenshot - project layout.png

My next steps are to move on to beginning the Research and Development PDFs for my Subject projects: Persuasion, Penguin and Branding.

Digital Me – the Online Portfolio

Now I’ve created a rough idea of what I want my CV to look like, I decided to start on the online portfolio.

After trialling out a few different platforms on which I could create my online portfolio on, including WordPress and Adobe Portfolio, I settled on using Wix after finding a theme that I really liked and finding it the most comfortable to use.

Screen Shot 2017-05-18 at 15.16.23

Screen Shot 2017-05-18 at 15.16.37

Screen Shot 2017-05-18 at 15.17.04

Screen Shot 2017-05-18 at 15.17.24

Screen Shot 2017-05-18 at 15.17.43

In my online portfolio, I have used a serif font which I prefer over the bold sans serif font of Bebas Neue that I used in my original CV design, so I have since changed the typefaces in my CV to match the online portfolio that I am creating. I have changed the I’m Amber ‘title’ to match. The typefaces now used on both my online portfolio and in my CV are Playfair Display for headlines and Avenir for the body text – personally, I feel that this use of the serif font actually suits me as a person and my personally much better than the original sans serif font did. I have kept the tone of the site informal, friendly and relatable.

I have kept the online portfolio simple and professional. There are only four key areas to my site, all linked in the header menu bar: Home, Portfolio, About and Contact. The website is one whole page which you can scroll through in one, separated by invisible anchor points which split up the four sections – each of the menu bar links simply automatically scroll the user down to that particular anchor. I am unsure as to whether the ‘Home’ section of the website is even needed as it does not really do much for the site as a whole and the ‘Portfolio’ itself may be telling enough as a home page.

On the contact page, viewers are invited to get in touch with me either by leaving a message on the website which I will then receive via email, or they can send me a direct email to my actual email address. My phone number is also available. I have reused the icons that I’ve created and used on my CV as buttons which link directly to my email and phone number.

There are still things to change on the site of course, for example I am still working through my past projects and updating them to add to my portfolio.

Oriel Davies Gallery

Over the Easter break, I volunteered at the Oriel Davies Gallery in Newtown in order to gain some work experience.

The Oriel Davies Gallery

Originally founded in 1982 as Oriel 31 in the nearby town of Welshpool, the gallery expanded three years later to the Davies Memorial Gallery in Newtown which had been built in 1967 specifically to be a gallery and community centre. This gallery was built with the legacy left behind by the well-known Davies sisters, Gwendoline and Margaret Davies. During the sisters’ lifetimes, they lived in Gregynog Hall (not far from Newtown) and collected works of art, including art by: Monet, Renoir, Van Gogh, Cezanne and Pissarro. The two sisters are now recognised as Wales’ most influential collectors of Impressionist and 20th Century art. On their passing, their collection was entrusted to the National Museum Wales, in Cardiff. Between 2002 and 2004, the gallery closed for refurbishment and upgrading, and then reopened with the new name, Oriel Davies Gallery in recognition of the Davies sisters.

The Oriel Davies Gallery now has three spaces in which it shows a range of works throughout the year, from: major exhibitions of national collections; newer work by established artists; to more experimental work by emerging artists. Aside from the gallery rooms, there is also a café and a shop, as well as there being workshops, courses, talks and other events held regularly.

oriel-davies-gallery


During my time at the gallery, I did gallery guiding and worked on the front of house desk. Aside from meeting and greeting people and showing them around the exhibition, I also had to keep on top of other things such as: making sales from the shop; maintaining the cleanliness of the children’s resource area and the shop; handing out visitor questionnaires, etc.

The Exhibition: Vanishing Point

The exhibition that I was gallery guiding for was called, Vanishing Point, and was a display of new work by Cardiff-based artist, Kelly Best. The exhibition was created by Best specifically for the Oriel Davies Gallery space, meaning it was created to fit and suit its habitat exactly, and it offers a response to the architectural and physical space of the Oriel Davies’ galleries. Her works feature interconnections between sculpture, painting and drawing, which work together to consider the site, space and surface.

Personally I loved her steel sculptures the most, some of which towered over and above you, and some of which you could actually interact with such as stepping over and through. Best works in a range of media, including steel, watercolour and coloured pencil but tends to always manipulate the piece’s perspective, scale and light. I found with many of her pieces of show, particularly the steel sculptures, that depending on where you stood in the room and from what angle you looked at the piece from, the appearance changed. Although her work is rather minimal, which lead to some people being put off and unsure of what to think, the processes that she must have taken to reach the outcome of each piece is what I find particularly interesting when thinking about.

Although her pieces seemed almost too ‘basic’ at first, I really admired how simplistic and graphic they were. Her ‘zig-zagged wall’, as I called it, was a wonderful piece that looked amazing at both a distance and up-close. I loved how no two A4 pieces were the same – every single one was unique – and when looking more closely at the piece, you could see how the watercolours blended together, probably where Best had not washed her brush before changing colour. This process has meant that there are specks of blue left in the red and specks of red left in the blue, and where the brush has began to dry before being dipped back in water, the paper shows through creating a seemingly effortless aesthetic. You can see her experimenting with this drying out brush technique in some of her other pieces too. Really, I loved how something so simple could be so beautiful.

The pieces below really summed up the name of her exhibition, Vanishing Point, particularly the red one in which it feels you can look deeper and deeper into the painting to find the piece’s ‘vanishing point’ to they eye. Each of these nine pieces were individually quite psychedelic – getting as close as possible to a piece so that the painting filled my whole view, created a great intensity and perspective.


Overall, it was great to have the work experience there at the gallery, and was also fantastic to meet people involved in and interested in the creative industry. I feel that it was definitely a really worthwhile experience for me and I look forward to hopefully going back and working there again, perhaps over the Summer.

Further Food Safety

Over the Easter break, I have set myself the task of pushing myself to create more pieces for the Tenovus supported ‘Food Wellbeing during Chemotherapy’ campaign that I worked on in my Persuasion project during last term.

Since producing and presenting the video that I created for my clients, I have decided that I want to create them other pieces, including posters, social media elements and a new improved booklet that is capable of replacing their current one. I plan on creating these as a side project to the other three videos that I will be working with them to create by the end of this year outside of my university work.

I have been working firstly on a basic poster which will advertise the video that I have created. I have also made a banner to go with it which can be displayed on social media sites such as Facebook in order to help promote the video and ensure that more people see it – after all, the aim of the campaign is to raise the awareness of food safety for chemotherapy patients, to as many people, particularly caregivers, as possible. I have put the banner that I created onto the Tenovus Facebook page as an example of how and where it could be used.

Screen Shot 2017-04-14 at 21.31.41

Although the poster and banner are efficient in promoting the video that I have created for the campaign, I feel that I could create a more appealing series of posters, perhaps displaying a range of infographics. I would want to use more colour to make them eye-catching, so will look into using the Tenovus colours from their brand guidelines which have been supplied to me by my clients.

Final Outcome and Presentation

Today we gave presentations of our final outcomes of the Persuasion projects in front of our clients and tutors.

Before giving our presentations, we had previously created and rehearsed our presentation which we intended to give today. However, earlier in the day today, before our presentations at 2pm, we had some difficulty putting our animations into the PowerPoint as several of the team’s videos were not completed until very last minute which meant we were not left with much time to import the animations into the presentation. Personally, although my animation was complete, the way in which I had rendered and then exported it meant that the file size was much too big to go on the presentation. After adjusting the quality of the animation, hoping to reduce the file size, I exported it again and although the file size was much more appropriate, the quality had been so much decreased that the on-screen text during the animation was pixelated and barely readable. In the end, due to being rushed for time and the presentation deadline fast approaching, I decided to instead simply show my original final film, which was too large to actually be inserted into the presentation, as a separate file directly from the desktop. Other members of the group ended up doing the same.

Even after these initial obstacles, during the presentations, everything went smoothly. Our group made sure to introduce ourselves to our audience before beginning and then spoke about our project title and the organisation that we were working for, and the mission statement and key aim of the communication that we set out to achieve. Next we went on to each taking it in turns to give a short introduction on our own animation and showing it.

The presentations concluded with inviting our clients to view more of our work, such as the storyboards and other development pieces, and to discuss our animations further. Although our client was unable to stay for long due to her own circumstances, we were able to briefly talk about each of our outcomes with her. She spoke about what she really liked in our pieces, claiming that she really likes ‘Steve’ in my own stop-motion animation, and we were also able gain any more constructive critique and where we could go from here. I am really pleased that they still wish to continue working with me in creating the other three videos for their 4-part video series on the topic.

If I were to do the presentations again, I feel that if we had made sure all of our group member’s animations were completed fully in advance – we could have used the extra time to actually insert them into the presentation, rather than have to navigate off of the presentation to get to, open and play our animations. This would have created a more overall professional looking presentation.

Personally, I also feel that I spent too long looking at and speaking to the screen projection, rather than looking out at my audience and speaking directly to them. To improve, I would engage more efficiently with my audience, and client in particular, by having eye contact and by being a little animated, such as using hand gestures to make myself more inviting and to involve the audience.

I felt that I became slightly nervy during the presentation, partly because of the minor panic of getting the animations onto the presentation beforehand, and although the clients and audience had not witnessed this, I think that I ended up rambling and stuttering more than I would have liked to – next time I will consider using cue cards to keep me on track so that I remember exactly what it is I want to say and when to say it.