While it may be old news, late is better than never. Prior to the release of the new Mad Max: Fury Road release, my sister – Elysse Melo – and I were tasked with transforming cars off the streets of Toronto into Mad Max inspired dusty works of art.
I designed and made the graphics for set decor, installing and accenting the set with custom crafted props. The whole day would have been a flop had it not been for a few clever decisions in our planning stages.
The intent originally was to fill squirt bottles with vegetable oil, and lightly coat vehicles so that SFX dust could be sprinkled onto the vehicles. We settled on pressurized cans of canola oil cooking spray. Pre-filled and consistent, the cooking spray cans were ideal for fast and controlled application.
Sprinkling the dust was wasteful and left an uneven layer which was difficult to work with. Throwing the paper-dust at the oil-covered car worked better still, and so an idea was born.
Drawing from my knowledge and background working with air brushes, I designed and built a custom dust cannon. Our first prototype was a simple water bottle with a dip straw and air inlet in it’s side. Slow to fill, and easily jammed – it proved the concept, paving the way for version two.
The new dust cannon was not only a huge improvement in speed, but also efficiency as well. With a multi-valve setup and shop compressor – my tool was ready to make mini dust storms on queue. It looks pretty cool too.
Here’s the SFX dust cannon, made of ABS and copper:
To further speed the project along, I partnered with DWS Creative Imaging to craft a set of stencils and other tools to speed up the dust-painting process. With my direction, we were able to exceed all expectations – decoration far more cars than previously thought possible.
Just a quick entry until I get the chance to do a full writeup – this is the tool I’m building. Basically a search engine that uses a popular social media website to get the most relevant fresh content. In conjunction with another API we gather and serve images all in an infinite scrolling gallery. This is all custom tailored through an intuitive user interface.
I’ve been dying to get some photoshop compositing practice in, and wanted to share some desktop backgrounds I created during some design exercises. All of the geometric elements in the gallery below were crafted in Adobe Illustrator CC and composited in Photoshop CC.
I was contracted to do a logo design job for a company I signed to keep quite about while it is still building itself up. This was my first logo design job (typically I do painting) and the gentleman ended up using one of his own designs. I have another logo job prospect in the works and I have some questions because I feel as though I was stooped last time.
Should I be copy writing or watermarking the designs I present? (sounds like a dumb question, but its serious)
Should I be compensated for the time and designs that I did come up with even though they weren’t chosen? (I put a lot of time into them and have nothing to show for it!)
I know how to factor pricing for my paintings, but I’m at a loss as how to price graphic work. Suggestions?
Here is my response:
I will bill regardless of my design being their final choice. Most clients we deal with in design industry aren’t art directors or designers themselves. Don’t feel rejected or put down when a Joe comes in and snuffs your hard work, they just don’t know the field. Ask a client about brand identity, target demographic, palette, etc. and chances are they’ll draw a blank.
“Should I be copy writing or watermarking the designs I present?”
No need to watermark, but never send out vector or hi-res work without payment. Working out a budget before-hand and receiving a down payment will let the client see you are serious about the project.
“Should I be compensated for the time and designs…”
You worked – you get paid, it’s how it goes. My down-payment ensure the meetings and prelim stages aren’t wasted on a client who doesn’t know what they want or need. If they bail we both walk away with something in our pockets.
“I know how to factor pricing for my paintings, but I’m at a loss as how to price graphic work.”
Graphic work is billed by the hour for myself and most of my peers. Most of the early billable hours comes in on research and identity for your client. Depending on budget, one could spend hours upon hours fitting a logo’s lines to the perfect ratio, sit into a golden curve, or drip with double entendre. A logo isn’t about creating a nice looking design, it’s about capturing and showing that brand’s identity in one fell swoop – I’m working on this myself. A good logo requires great client cooperation without being overbearing.
As an aside; Asking a client about their business’ traits, goals, and target market will get you further than asking to see logos and color palettes they like.
http://www.thelogofactory.com/ has been cranking out logos for years, not all of them are great but the blog posts on the site are phenomenal. They will make you see the error of your ways pretty damn quickly
update: The link in my article still works. Subtle Patterns has changed it’s format to a paid plugin, individual patterns are still available. Due to the pay to play nature of the photoshop plugin, they’ve removed links to the collection download.
I wanted to share a resource I’m completely infatuated with: Subtle Patterns. This website aggregates free to use subtle patterns, and shares user contributions to the rest of the community.
The best part of this website? They don’t make you jump through hoops to get their files! No sign-up, emails, or other crap no one really wants to deal with (why do you think my comments are registration free?). Even better, they have every pattern available for free, in a master pattern file. The default photoshop patterns suck (pardon me), and loading up this free subtle patterns download really gives you a great choice of patterns to integrate into your design work.
I had a user email me with some questions on installing subtle patterns into Photoshop. It’s really simple, just follow these steps:
Follow the link above and download the subtle-patterns SubtlePatterns.pat.zip file
Open the archive (zip) and extract (drag/drop) the SubtlePatterns.pat file into your file system
Note: C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CSX\Presets\Patterns is ideal
Open Photoshop and click ‘S’ to open your stamp tool
Switch to the pattern stamp tool if Clone Stamp is active by holding your mouse button down on the Stamp tool icon
Activate the pattern dropdown in the top ribbon, usually below the help menu
In the top right corner of the window, there is a gear icon – clicky clicky
Pressing load patterns will open one final dialog
Locate your pattern files and load them through this dialog
I just wanted to share this video with you guys. Design has so many mediums and this guy illustrated wonderfully how simple things can come together with the right type of planning. Note the type part, bad planning isn’t going to get you good results all too often. Cheers!