Creating Solid Graphic Layouts through Practice

Yeah, not sure how much I buy into my own title here. That’s not to say I don’t like what I created. Just that I’m not sold on how ‘solid’ of a layout design it is.

In all I believe I spent about 1-2 hours making this design, with the majority of the time spent on looking for images to use in the final version. I started this little exercise  when I was exploring some different layout designs. There’s a nifty website called canva that I was exploring and they had a bunch of layout examples. Really loved some of what they were showing and was inspired to play around with some enlarged text to help frame images. Thought that this might work for redesigning the home page of this website. Currently I’m not too keen on the hero image as the only element on the home page. Thinking of redoing it to be one long scrolling page that has little snippets of what else is on my website.

Anyways, I took my inspiration from canva and then doodled a few ideas on a piece of scrap paper. I then created a few mock-ups in  Illustrator. I created six different designs that all riffed off the same idea and grew from one another. The final design I created here was the one I opted to go with, which it’s somewhat funny that either I find that the very first or last design I create when experimenting is the one I end up going with for the final design.

I imported the chosen design into Photoshop and then looked through some of the images I had already put up on my Facebook page. For some reason or another I decided to just use jpg’s I could save off my Facebook page instead of using higher quality images off my external hard drive. Oh well, this was all just for practice anyways.

After pulling enough images, which would cover-up the black squares in the design, I decided the image needed some texture. With that I opted for a logical texture of art paper, which was pulled off the net. I then started combining everything in Photoshop. With the images I decided I’d go for blown up sections of them, and I think if I did this again I would create even bigger blow-ups of the images so you can see my brush strokes or pencil marks more clearly. The idea is that this is to communicate to the viewer that these are hand-drawn hence traditional pieces of art that I have created, and to entice the viewer to seek out the full images of my artwork posted here.

Above is the final version of the design. Not sure if I’m sold on how light the background is (perhaps boost the texture), and not sure if how I broke up the word Traditional is working for me. Regardless though, it brought up some ideas and that’s what the point was. One should never stop practicing and sometimes one should post their less than perfect work. They, as in ‘they’, say one should only put their best foot forward on their portfolios. Well, this website is my portfolio and while I want good artwork to be showcased here, I also want to post my steps. I want to post my progress and sometimes things that don’t work out quite so well.

Let me know below what you think!