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Wednesday, 22 February 2017

The First Year Students do 'Hardcore' Typography!

The first years have just completed the first of what will be two, in-depth inductions, to the technical and precise world of quality typography. The feedback sessions on Friday kicked off with a typography test, designed to test their growing expertise, conducted by our very own Rhiannon Robinson (33) a.k.a. The Typographer Royal.

 "What's the hole in a letter called?" muses Becky (21) - N.B. It's called a counter...

H.R.H.T.T.R. reveals the answers to an eager audience. Eager because prizes were on offer to the day's top performers!

Jasmine (21) the day's top performer (in both the typography and copy test) clutching her TWO!!! prizes. No expense was spent in obtaining these bars of quality Aldi chocolate.


As always, we design on paper before working on the Macs...




...producing various alternative designs...

 ...before presenting the final pieces.


 Here's Isabel (21) victor in the afternoon type test.

 Rhiannon explains where all the typographic and punctuation errors are to the afternoon group.

 More carefully considered typography from the afternoon group.


Monday, 20 February 2017

photoshop play

Year two illustrators, under the watchful eye of photoshop blackbelt Dwayne 'Miyagi' Bell (33), have just finished a week of intensive photoshop play, focussing on a few simple basics such as resolution, scanning and selections. It's amazing what they've managed to produce in a week. Here's just a few of the examples.


Harry 'Assos' Ward (21).


Tab Walby (21).


Rebecca Graham (21).




Hazel Mason (21).

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Scenes from the Life Room








Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Studio Randoms

All photos taken on Monday 13 February 2017


Illustration student being given a masterclass in scanning textures and drawings by charismatic Illustration tutor Mr. Dwayne Bell (33)

 Extra texture!

 Students, like police officers are getting younger. These whippersnappers are from the local FE college, here on a taster day.

 Busy, busy.

 Year 2 Illustration student Rebecca with her faithful tin of vegetable soup.

 The Year 1 typography masterclasses continue...

We've got Year 2 Graphic Design students working on a project with a local brewery. Charismatic programme leader, Jim Millington (33) was particularly keen to see this one happen.

 Branding beer.

 Once scanned and extracted in Photoshop, the illustrators played with their textures.

 As a treat, Dwayne showed everyone how to do 'the vogue' like famous pop-princess Madonna (33)

Feedback on the beer bottle branding


Wednesday, 8 February 2017

The First Years are Introduced to 'Hardcore' Typography

The Typographer Royal (with full regalia) dispenses words of wisdom to Lucie and Rachel (both 21)


It's that time of year when The University of Cumbria's very own Typographer Royal, H.R.H. Rhiannon Robinson, spends a lot of quality time with our first year students.

Rhiannon was crowned Typographer Royal by our very own queen, H.R.H Elizabeth II, in an elaborate ceremony, held in Typographers Hall (City of London) in June 1990. The position ofTypographer Royal is not to be underestimated and Rhiannon takes her official duties very seriously.Her role behooves her to undertake the following:

  1. Banish poor letter spacing, leading and tracking from all four corners of the kingdom
  2. Seek out and destroy all 'widows' and 'orphans' in documents near and far
  3. Challenge all developers of Microsoft Word Art to single, mortal combat
  4. Round-up, imprison in Newgate and finally hang by the neck until dead, all look-alike, generic fonts and that evil malefactor, known to the wider population as 'Comic Sans'
  5. Teach kick-arse typography skills to students of The University of Cumbria
Quality time with H.R.H.T.T.R.


We design on paper first and then make it look sexy on the Mac.




Check back in a week or so to see the finished work...

First Years, Seventh Project - Film Pastiche and Title Sequence

The first year's latest project was divided into two parts. First, we taught them basic film making techniques and asked them to study a specific movie genre (pulled at random from our 'envelope of destiny').  To complete part one they had to create their own 30 - 60 second long pastiche film of their chosen genre. 

To accomplish this they also had to produce a detailed storyboard before they started shooting. Here are some examples:





We then went on to teach them the basics of Adobe After Effects and asked them to create a title sequence to accompany their film. Incredibly they only had three weeks in which to complete this massive challenge.

Did they succeed?... More than in our wildest dreams! 

Here's the 'action' film made from the storyboards above:




But hold on a minute... Graphic Designers and Illustrators making films? Are we mad?

No, quite the opposite. As technologies merge (these films were mostly made in Photoshop by the way!?) and, as TV and streaming media expand exponentially, who will be there at the cutting edge, producing well designed, intelligent content? Designers and Illustrators, of course

This project marks the start of a journey for those students who have a strong interest in exploiting video, film and animation as their chosen media.

In the meantime; put you feet up, turn down the lights, open a carton of Kia-Ora and scatter popcorn down your front as you enjoy the fruits of their labour...