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This article focuses on the specific aspects of my essay on the 3D design projects such as; Banner Web Advert, TV Indent and Film Title Sequence. I will be re-evaluating on the previous evaluations based on the three projects to analyze the steps I have taken to develop the concept side of the three projects individually. I will also be focusing on the basis of my ideas and the work that I have observed from professional 3D artist that has influenced me. By formulating carefully planned strategies, on how to tackle certain points during the process of the projects. Giving me a better idea of how to handle my set tasks, and fulfill the objective specifications on the individual project requirements. The aim of this essay is to gain a better understanding of my direction of conceptual development, in how I generate and produced my final designs to meet the  criteria’s of the three individual projects.

The first project required the design of a 3D banner web advertisement for the Masters in Animation course. The objective was to produce a 3D design that possessed professional quality, for the overall presentation to be at an appropriate level of 3D animation design. The initial goal was to expose the course of Masters in Animation to a wide audience, through displaying a set amount of skills and 3D design techniques that can be used through learning 3D design. As a means to show people an example of the interesting things they could create in 3D Digital Design. The format of the banner web design was to be of a specific size, suitable for web page design layout.

I started off on laying out some brainstorms, from extracting information from the web. Based on design processes I learnt that brainstorming is an essential form of planning out the steps you intend on taking, depending on the direction that you are looking to go to develop your work. By my understanding it helps me gather up a concentrated set of ideas, relating to the project objective as well as the concept that I looked to represent it as.

I first started on the basics of observing the elemental aspects of what a banner web is suppose to consist of, so that I would have I clear understanding of what I have to work with, and also how I can work my ideas around it. One of the main bullet points that I also observed on the banner web, is the target audience. Basically my plan was to concentrate on potential students from ages 16 upwards to around 40 years old. I thought that if I was to create a web advertisement on a course focused on 3D Digital Design that it should apply to a wide range of people, who might have an interest in the area to want to participate, or even start to take an interest in the concept of 3D Design. From looking at the contents of the banner web requirements, I moved onto looking at possible concept themes that would be complimentary towards 3D design. This involved areas that I personally thought most people could relate to in this century that we live in now. Above all the themes I had looked through I chose to go with modern technology, because I have always found the concept to be very versatile conceptually. Also that it compares with how modern technology today is rapidly evolving, which is something that everyone interacts with one way or another.

Through modern technology I went onto working with robotic concepts, I believe the reason why I went with robotics is because I find that it allows me to be flexible with my style of creativity. When it comes to designing a robot or machine, I can conger up a series of design transformation sequences for example.

When it comes to sketching up design concepts, I personally find it to be the most innovative part of the design process, simply because it’s a form of illustrating your thoughts, as if you are bringing elements from a dream and transferring it into real life. One of the methods of producing concept designs that I have developed is fairly basic, where I sketched out various robot figures because the robot was to be the physical representative of my banner web. Then among the sketches I produced, I simply analyzed through them to find the one that had the strongest elements for a powerful design concept, making it stand out amongst the rest. Which is one of the key elements that I always try to posses in my designs, in order to capture the target audience attention.

The one concept I chose from among the rest that I drew up, I took into further developmentation in order to gain a more professional feel to the quality that it needed to have. I did went about this by researching certain aspects of robotic concepts, to observe and verify from other designers work, the presentational elements that I will needed to hit my set targets. I always found research analysis to be the core structure of a designers work, because since the age of technology from how it was to how it is today. We have been able to push the boundaries of creative inventing, by learning and observing from each other. This is what enabled me to finish and create my final concept that depicted a mechanical robot with a body structure similar to that of a spider.

The 3D modeling process I always found challenging, because it was mostly a means of placing the right features accordingly based on my final concept layouts. Through my practice working with the 3D software 3D Studio Max (2010 version), I was able to applying the necessary features that I planned to use to inspire my potential target audience. From completing my first animated sequence, I was given feedback on areas that needed improvement, which I was not very open to at first until I noticed to visual impact that it came with. Over all I am pleased of how the final banner came out, and in regards to the project itself. I found it to be useful in the area of web designing and building up knowledge on the specific factors that a website advertisement consists of. 

“3D Spider Robot, Banner Web Project”

Starting with my channel 4 TV indent project, my main objective was to create a TV introduction for the channel 4 logo. As a 3D designer I found it challenging to use effect brainstorm methods in order to gain a well structure plan. For professional designers I understand that they use complex strategies, to base their ideas around. From observing my point of view on how I work, one of my main wet tasks is to always come with something fresh and original. This in the design world is an essential key skill to have.

“Your unique artistic vision is the synthesis of your training, passion, and experience. It’s something you develop over time. Artists explore different types of work, experiment, and pull together all this knowledge (psd, envato, 2010).”  

This particular view on artistic creativity I extracted from an article on ‘7 Steps to Developing Originality in Your Design and Illustration Work’. Even thought the article was based on design in illustration, I found it to be very insightful, because the concept of design originality.

I would say applies to almost every working atmosphere, whether it doesn’t relate to the field of 3D Design. I chose the article, because it was inspiring and gives me a more of an outlook to how I can keep my ideas original. By basically using a reliable source, that grows from my personal interest in 3D animation.

From looking at this article I look to observe work by professional 3D designers, so that I can grasp their way of thinking. This will allow me to develop my own way of original development.

The concept that I chose to go with for the TV indent involved modern construction methods that related to a car manufacturing industry. Simply because the theme I chose to express the TV indent with was based on one of the TV programmes that was broadcast on channel 4. From the programme that I chose for my channel 4 identity, I chose the racing car series ‘FA GT Racing Championship’.

When working with the theme style that I had chosen I thought why simply make an exact imitation of the programme concept in a slightly different form of design presentation? To which I approached the concept innovatively and instead of harnessing the basic elements of the programmes concept structure. I thought to trace it back to an early period that relates to the actual making preparations of the racing cars used in the programme itself.

From there I was able to formulate a more versatile concept that is not only based on cars, but shows the methods used in the industrial manufacturing warehouses that they are designed and put together. The process of expressing the core of the initial theme became more flexible and easier to produce visually, because now I had many directions in which to take the concept towards to present it in various ways. 

During the animation process of actually putting the sequence for the TV logo together, I found to be meticulous because I was design models based on complex machinery parts used in manufacturing warehouses.

There was a related topic that I had read from Simon Danaher’s book on Digital 3D Design, where he covered an article of the improvements that 3D design had brought to the world of industrial architecture.

Basically architects had to use ink pens to compile a series of high quality building structures sketching illustrations, which in my opinion was very time consuming because of the level of presentational quality and advance calculations that had to be managed in their design layouts. When the concept of 3D spacing started to propel into a more sufficient form of design, it enabled architects to create a 3D visualization of their building structures. Allowing them to observe how they would look in a realistic surrounding, which also became less time consuming and lead to even greater architectural accomplishments (Digital 3D Design, Simon Danaher, Chapter 1 pg 16).

My point of this article is how 3D design has made the world of architecture, manufacturing and modern technology production more efficient through enhanced visuals, where I’m using a concept for my car manufacturing theme to re-create the channel 4 logo in a similar form. That I think is most likely being used to this day to construct various car designs and even engine constructs.

“Channel 4 Logo”

With the production of my Channel 4 Logo, I realised that my main influence of the concept theme came from the enhanced benefits that 3D digital design has brought to the many design and construction industries of today.

In the making of my third project which was to produce a film title sequence, my chosen film was on Frank Miller’s Sin City. I chose this film mainly because of the visual elements that was involved in its production that consisted of bold colours and graphical imagery. Also being a fan of comical illustrations, I liked the depth of the story and how they visualised it through the basis of the original comic book series that the film originated from.

“3D Cityscape, Film Title Sequence”

Conclusion

In conclusion of the process during the three projects, I must say that it was challenging on a wide scale, from creative design to work developmentation, as well as generating original concepts. The basis of it all required me to be more assertive with the amount of work I had to handle and to push my ideas further to a standard that would be acceptable in the professional 3D industries.

Link Reference:

PSD. Envato. 2010. http://psd.tutsplus.com/articles/7-steps-to-developing-originality-in-your-design-and-illustration-work/

Digital 3D Design. Simon Danaher. United State.

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This article is an inspiring presentation of Simon Danaher’s book on Digital 3D Design 2004, which I found both immense and insightful. In this article he has covered the origins and evolutionary developments that 3D Digital Design has under gone, by depicting sharp and well resourced information that collaborates many aspects of the 3D industry. Also individual areas that has been influenced by 3D Design in many ways, that has also brought 3D Design to a substantial level of creative design, high quality and advanced methodology. From basic methods in calculation, to advanced 3D techniques.  Through this book I have learnt a great deal from the many aspects of how 3D has evolved, which is why I have extracted bits of information from particular articles, that has not only caught my interest but has given me a clearer insight into the specific areas of 3D Design development. Which I chose to analyse these certain areas of 3D, as a means of enhancing my own skills as a 3D Designer.
  

 

Based on the first article on the History of 3D, the 1960s was known to be an interesting period of exploration and development, where artist Charles Csuri. Set himself a task to produce images of a certain quality through using computers. By achieving this he enlisted the aid of mathematicians and professional programmers. The steps that he took through using computer programmes, such as Sketchpad. Which was a revolutionary computer program written by Ivan Sutherland in 1963 (Wikipedia/Sketchpad, 2010). Which was the tool he used back then to produce the first computer simulation, with the help of American Computer Scientist Ivan Sutherland. Together they created the very first virtual reality system, originally used for helicopter flight tests. I found it innovative in how they gained a huge amount of knowledge of computer systems, enabling them to model real – world objects in 3D spaces (Chapter 1, History of 3D, pg10).

“Image of the Sketchpad interface (1963)”
3D started to get more highly developed due to more advanced software, which got 3D Digital Design more involved in Hollywood films. It was in 1982 the film Tron, was the first film to possess 3D graphics in  a motion picture. Which in the end didn’t create much of a impact, by having too much detail in the 3D visual quality, it made the film unsuccessful. This was because the 3D motion graphics was lacking realism, that made the two elements separate. It was during 1993 when the realise of the hit film Jurassic Park wowed audiences, with it’s realistic graphic qualities. From the growing success of 3D Graphics, the CGI animation production company Pixar Studio came with the first fully animated film Toy Story (Chapter 1, History of 3D, pg 12-13). Having such a big impact on the film industry, Toy Story has always been a source of conceptual and graphical inspiration for me. Mostly because of it’s overall perspective on 3D animation, and how it interprets the story through pure 3D graphics.

 

“Tron, 1982”

 

“First fully animated film”

With 3D Digital Design at the standard that it is now (2010), the new and improve film Tron has been remade with high quality designs and graphical concepts, that is sure to guarantee to make a huge impact o audiences.

“Tron, 2010”

As 3D graphics grew it’s concept of three dimensional space was incorporated into various other industries, such as the world of architecture. Before architect designers had to used ink pens to produce sharp accurate concepts illustrations on their building complexes. Thanks to 3D Digital Design, they have found a way to simply their way of constructing buildings, by using 3D to create a digital visualization of their building structures. Which I think also came with better techniques that allowed the architects to use a light radiosity on their design renders, giving it a more accurate and precise design layout. Providing a better perspective on how their building designs would or could look with various light exposures (Chapter 1, History of 3D, pg 16).

“Architectual Structures designed in 3D space”

When it comes to 3D Game production, 3D was and still is considered the source of it’s intense visualization with 3D capabilities. The concept of game design was down to generating 3D graphics In movie and video production, illustration, or visualization, which resulted in high quality rendered images. These rendered images became time consuming, because of the level of quality, for when it came to games the level of quality was completely different. Since 3D objects usually take a lot of time to render or animate into a moving sequence when at a high level of polygons, known as the amount of 3D plains that make up the entire model. It became necessary to model games at a low polygon count, which compromised more consistently with the playability and speed of the games interface. This resulted in the game models being at the lowest quality possible, considering the quality that is added on by the textures that are applied to the models anatomy. With these precisions designers were capable of creating games at a much higher rate, even though back then it was at such a low quality. Yet all the same they gave a strong impact on the target audience (Chapter 2, 3D in the Real World, pd 36-37).

“3D Texture mapping to low poly model”
The process of animation as a 2D artist is very technical, because it is based on accurate drawing and depending on the level of detail it can be very time consuming. With 3D artist, they have programmes that deal with producing animation not only in 2D/3D but also at a much faster rate. Through using a process known as key framing, where an objects position is captured in one shot. Which continues as a sequence focused on the objects movements, that are taken as individual key frames. When it comes to animating an object in 3D specifically, the animator records a key frame of an object. Moves it to a different location in the 3D space that it’s modelled in, and record a second frame from where it has been moved to. From this point the computer takes over to do it’s magic, where it creates a smooth interpolation between the two key frames that have been recorded. Connecting the values of the two key frames to create a simple animation sequence, which then can be played back or rendered (Chapter 4, 3D Core Concepts, pg 92-93).
 
“Animtion motion sequence”
 
I found the concept of animation very stimulating; by observing it from my point of view it has made me want to be more engaged with my work as a 3D animator.
 
In conclusion to the book, I think it has strong elements that revolve around the specific aspects of 3D design and the evolutionary progressions that it’s under gone. I also think that I have gained a better understanding of the basis on the 3D process in animation, which brought up a lot of good theories. Which I thought was relevant and visually interesting.

Bibliography

Image1. Wikipedia. 2010. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sketchpad

Digital 3D Design, Simon Danaher, 2004, United States.

Image5. http://www.icreate3dmodelling.co.uk/3D-images/3D-architecture-renderings2.jpg

Image3. www.internationalhero.co.uk/t/tron.htm

Image4. http://hipsteroverkill.com/Portals/62/images/Tron_Light_Cycle_1982.jpg

Image6. http://www.digitalearthblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/10/ge_denver.jpg

Image7. http://www.renderhjs.net/bbs/flashkit/color_dune/demo4/zelda_preview.jpg

Image8. http://www.cgfilmmaker.com/images/p3_01A.jpg

This article covers the Art form of sculpting, I personally like the style and the presentational detail that it depicts, through intricate elements. I will be covering the various sculpting styles from across the many regions such as Prehistoric time, Ancient Egypt, Rome and Renaissance.

“The history of the sculpture is varied and is illustrative of how sculpture has changed extensively over the ages. The art of sculpture continues as a vital art form worldwide. From pre-historic and ancient civilizations to the contemporary, from the utilitarian and religious to Modernist abstraction, and conceptual manifestations of both form and content, a continuous stream of creativity & an extremely modest show of compassion.

Sculpture has been central in religious devotion in many cultures, and until recent centuries large sculptures, too expensive for private individuals to create, were usually an expression of religion or politics. Those cultures whose sculptures have survived in quantities include the cultures of the Ancient Mediterranean, India and China, as well as many in South America and Africa (Douglas, 2010).”

The many cultures that has left their mark through time, I think shows a sense of timeless generosity. By the way they express their sculpting skills based on their cultural methods, gives a strong sense of artistic creativity.

Egyptian

“Ancient Egyptian art is five thousand years old. It emerged and took shape in the ancient Egypt, the civilization of the Nile Valley. Expressed in paintings and sculptures, it was highly symbolic and fascinating – this art form revolves round the past and was intended to keep history alive.

From 3000 B.C Symbolism also played an important role in establishing a sense of order. Symbolism, ranging from the Pharaoh’s regalia (symbolizing his power to maintain order) to the individual symbols of Egyptian gods and goddesses, was omnipresent in Egyptian art. Animals were usually also highly symbolic figures in Egyptian art (Manley, 2010).”

I have always had a huge fascination with Egyptian culture, because above most other cultures I find theirs to be bold and artistic, as well as firm and elegant in a specific and unique manner. Also I like the idea of how they shape their surroundings with illustrations of historical backgrounds based on their culture and heritage. One of the features that I particularly have found interesting about the Egyptian culture is how they had lack of machinery or high-tech technology, yet they were able to build structures and booby traps that was just as complex.

Greek

“Around 480-323 B.C the form of classical sculpture became fluid and natural and the stylization of the archaic art gave way to realistic figures which emanated the illusion of moving through space. For the first time in human history, human anatomy was deemed worthy of being immortalized in stone or bronze, and the humble and laborious forward step of the kouros statues was replaced by poses that commanded their space with effortless movement. During the classical period the Greek artists replaced the stiff vertical figures of the archaic period with three-dimensional snap shots of figures in action (Boardman, 2010).”

I have always found Greek sculptures to be very strong in appearance and perpetuated highly chiselled structures, through using simple basic methods. Through their way of projecting the human body in such confidence, I think it opened a more realistic style to the art form of sculpting and gave a new in sight as to how we observe the human. As more then just an organic form, but also as a symbol of artistic creativity and cultural dominance. Where they show pride in the complexity and versatility of their work.

Roman

“Ancient Roman sculpture is generally regarded as being a mass produced copy of Greek sculpture but this is quite clearly an over simplification.

The earliest innovations of “classical” sculpture had already been adopted by the Etruscans who traded with the Greek colonies of southern Italy, well before Ancient Rome was a city to be reckoned with.

At the basis of Greek sculpture we can find a journey of growing consciousness of the individual and his place within the world about him.”

“The application of proportion to the human figure (and to architecture also) is a well known achievement but we shouldn’t forget the debt owed to the Egyptians before them who likewise applied predefined proportions to their pyramids and sculptures.”

I have always had a huge fascination with Egyptian culture, because above most other cultures I find theirs to be bold and artistic, as well as firm and elegant in a specific and unique manner. Also I like the idea of how they shape their surroundings with illustrations of historical backgrounds based on their culture and heritage. One of the features that I particularly have found interesting about the Egyptian culture is how they had lack of machinery or high-tech technology, yet they were able to build structures and booby traps that was just as complex.

 

Greek

“Around 480-323 B.C the form of classical sculpture became fluid and natural and the stylization of the archaic art gave way to realistic figures which emanated the illusion of moving through space. For the first time in human history, human anatomy was deemed worthy of being immortalized in stone or bronze, and the humble and laborious forward step of the kouros statues was replaced by poses that commanded their space with effortless movement. During the classical period the Greek artists replaced the stiff vertical figures of the archaic period with three-dimensional snap shots of figures in action (Boardman, 2010).”

“Ancient Greek Sculpture”

 

 

I have always found Greek sculptures to be very strong in appearance and perpetuated highly chiselled structures, through using simple basic methods. Through their way of projecting the human body in such confidence, I think it opened a more realistic style to the art form of sculpting and gave a new in sight as to how we observe the human. As more then just an organic form, but also as a symbol of artistic creativity and cultural dominance. Where they show pride in the complexity and versatility of their work.

 

Roman

“Ancient Roman sculpture is generally regarded as being a mass produced copy of Greek sculpture but this is quite clearly an over simplification.

The earliest innovations of “classical” sculpture had already been adopted by the Etruscans who traded with the Greek colonies of southern Italy, well before Ancient Rome was a city to be reckoned with.

At the basis of Greek sculpture we can find a journey of growing consciousness of the individual and his place within the world about him.”

 

“The application of proportion to the human figure (and to architecture also) is a well known achievement but we shouldn’t forget the debt owed to the Egyptians before them who likewise applied predefined proportions to their pyramids and sculptures.”

 

“Roman Sculpture”

From the research that I have collected regarding the style origins of the roman culture, the sculpting was originally used from Greek structures. Also both Roman and Greek sculptures, grew from the Egyptian style of sculpting. What I find interesting, is even though all three cultures are strongly independent, it seems that the three civilizations are linked all the way from Egyptian influence. “Roman sculpture initially copied much from Greek sculpture just as Greeks had originally copied from late Egyptians (Wikipedia, 2010).”

Bibliography

Wikipedia. Bailey Douglass. 2010. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_sculpture

Crystalinks. Bill Manley. 2010. http://www.crystalinks.com/egyptart.html

Greek Landscapes. John Boardman. 2010. http://www.greeklandscapes.com/greece/athens_museum_classical.html

Marian Milani. Giovanni Milani-Santarpia. 2010. 

http://www.mariamilani.com/ancient_rome/Ancient_Roman_Sculpture.htm

Wikipedia. Gerhard Koeppel.

 2010. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_sculpture

Image1&2. Sabob. 2010. http://www.sabob.com/products/Egyptian_Assyrian_replica_Sculpture_ancient_Bull_Wall_New.html

Image3. Ebay. 2010. cgi.ebay.com.au/…/300378564657

Image4. Majestic Dragonfly. 2010.  http://www.majesticdragonfly.com/mdstore/images/uploads/1307_large.jpq.jpg

Image5. Great Mirror. Flying Mountain. 2009. http://www.greatmirror.com/images/medium/003122.jpg

In this article I will be talking about the development of computers, from when there wasn’t the use of computer generated calculation. I will also be analysing the many scientists, mathematicians and other founders of computer based technology.

Computers have been around for a long period of time and were developed over many years with contributions from philosophers, inventors, engineers, mathematicians, physicists, technicians, visionaries, and scholars. The first computing devices were calculating machines and over time evolved into the digital computers as we know them today.

It has taken over 180 years for the computer to develop from an idea in Charles Babbage head into an actual computer developed today by many different companies. Therefore, it was a long and tedious path in order to make the computer into what we now use today (123HelpMe, 2010).

“The earliest device that was used for counting was the human hand. Later around 500 B.C, the first solid calculator was the abacus. The abacus consisted of a wooden frame that holds rods with freely-sliding beads mounted on. The abacus was used as a physical aid, to keep track of certain calculations that were being performed (Ifrah, 2009).”

“Abacus structure design”

In my opinion the abacus is still going strong today as it was then, because it is a powerful educational tool that can be used on both adults and children. What I like about the abacus is how it has many useful traits to it, based on the user that holds it. For mathematicians, it is used to calculate heavy sums of numbers. With children it is used to give them a basic understanding of mathematical theory, which up to this day is used in public schools. Also I like how they have converted into a form of alphabetical learning and visual number blocks, which I think further extends the concept of the abacus even more.

“Modern children’s abacus”

“Alphabet Abacus”

“During the year 1623, Wilhelm Schickard, a German mathematician and clergyman, designed and built a mechanism which could add, subtract, multiply and divide. Schickard’s machine was similar in operation to the slide rule but also incorporated a set of metal wheels that performed the arithmetical operations. Schickard called his device a “calculator-clock” (Computer Museum, 2000).”

“Computer clock, 1623”

With this sophisticated mechanism produced by mathematician Wilhelm Schickard, the method of calculating numbers was more sufficient and capable. Through this machine, they were able to add, subtract, multiply and divide. What I find most interesting about Schickard’s methods is that he developed his vision through conceptual ideas, and took them further into making a fully assembled prototype. This relates to the same methods that all designers use up to today.

“Z1 Mechanical Computer, 1935”

“The Z1 was a mechanical computer designed by Konrad Zuse from 1935 to 1936 and built by him from 1936 to 1938. It was a binary electrically driven mechanical calculator with limited programmability, reading instructions from punched tape.

The Z1 was the first freely programmable computer of the world which used Boolean logic and binary floating point numbers. It was completed in 1938 and financed completely from private funds. Konrad Zuse’s first computer, built between 1936 and 1938, was destroyed in the bombardment of Berlin in December 1943, during World War II, together with all construction plans (Wikipedia, 2010).”

This engineered computer is one of the first to run on electricity. With it’s complex interior, it was able to be used as the very first programmable computer. Making it more technical and enabled people to work more securely. What I find interesting about the overall design of the Z1 computer is the size of it’s exterior. Also how so much constructing was needed to contain such programming that compared to now could do a very limited amount of processing.

“Atanasoff–Berry Computer (ABC), 1937″

“The Atanasoff–Berry Computer (ABC) was the first electronic digital computing device. Conceived in 1937, the machine was not programmable, being designed only to solve systems of linear equations. It was successfully tested in 1942. However, its intermediate result storage mechanism, a paper card writer/reader, was unreliable, and when Atanasoff left Iowa State University for World War II assignments, work on the machine was discontinued (Ralston, 2010).”

I find this particular design interesting, because it shows that even when computer engineering was developing, it was still and issue to produce a computer that had both programming and linear equation systems. The times were more simple back then, for separate operations had to be processed using individual computers.

“The Atanasoff–Berry Computer (ABC) was the first electronic digital computing device.[1] Conceived in 1937, the machine was not programmable, being designed only to solve systems of linear equations. It was successfully tested in 1942. However, its intermediate result storage mechanism, a paper card writer/reader, was unreliable, and when Atanasoff left Iowa State University for World War II assignments, work on the machine was discontinued (Ralston, 2010).”

I find this particular design interesting, because it shows that even when computer engineering was developing, it was still and issue to produce a computer that had both programming and linear equation systems. The times were more simple back then, for separate operations had to be processed using individual computers.

“Electronic Delay Storage Automatic Calculator, (EDSAC)”

The Electronic Delay Storage Automatic Calculator, short for EDSAC is an early British computer that is considered to be the first stored program electronic computer that was created at the University of Cambridge in England. The computer performed its first calculation on May 6, 1949 and was the computer that ran the first graphical computer game (Campbell, 2010).”

I like the fact that the EDSAC was the first computer to run a graphical computer game, because it shows that the uses of it’s programming was opening out to a wider range of people. By processing more subjective capabilities. I also have always had an interest in the game noughts and crosses, because it enables the players to think strategically, that resorts to sort of tactical manoeuvres. Which is a similar pattern that real life battles are fought, by using intellectual know how, and how to gain one over your opponent.

“First graphical game, programmed”

“The first graphical game that was programmed was actually called OXO, and was a version of Noughts and Crosses (Tic-Tac-Toe) created in 1952, by A.S. Douglas, who was studying for his PhD at the University of Cambridge. The simulation was perfect, and you played using a dial-in telephone controller. It was designed for the worlds first stored-program computer, of which there is a simulator. It was displayed on a 35 x 16 pixel screen, in black and green.”

“Apple computer, 1977”

“In 1977 the Apple II, became one of the most popular computers ever. Although it is a vast improvement over the Apple I, it contains the same processor and runs at the same speed.
New features include a colour display, eight internal expansion slots, and a case with a keyboard. That may sound funny, but the Apple I and many other early computers didn’t necessarily have a case or even a keyboard. On some systems you had to added your own keyboard, if possible, and on others you toggled switches to enter programs and issue commands (Old Computers, 2010).”
The Apple II was one of the first computer with a colour display, and it has the BASIC programming language built-in, so it is ready-to-run right out of the box. The Apple II was probably the first user-friendly system.

From then on computer evolution has expanded on an unprecedented scale, that continues to grow into a more and more complex component. I expect that in the near future computer engineering will adapt into something highly capable that will allow mankind to push further the boundaries that limits us from achieving greater objectives.

Bibliography

123HelpMe. 2010. http://www.123helpme.com/preview.asp?id=37163

Georges Ifrah. 2009. EE. http://www.ee.ryerson.ca/~elf/abacus/history.html

Computer Museum. 2000. http://www.computermuseum.li/Testpage/Schickard-Machine-1623.htm

Image2 – http://www.squidoo.com/GoodKids

Image3 – mudpuddlestoys.com/toys/alphabet-abacus/

Image1 – gwydir.demon.co.uk/jo/numbers/machine/abacus.htm

Images3&4 – history-computer.com/…/Pioneers/Schickard.html

Image5. Z1. (2010). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Z1_(computer)

Image6. Anthony Ralston. (2010). Wikipedia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atanasoff%E2%80%93Berry_Computer

Image7. Martin Campbell-Kelly. EDSAC. (2010) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronic_Delay_Storage_Automatic_Calculator

Image9. Old Computers. 2009. http://oldcomputers.net/appleii.html

Image8 – www.isotx.com/wordpress/?p=92

snsvo4.seekandsource.com/moderncomputertrading/

This particular article I can say without a doubt is my most favourable amongst the rest, because I am a fan of animation overall, I took the analysis with great humility and positive interest. Through collecting a huge amount of information from variable sources of research about the history of animation as well as it’s evolutionary process that has exceeded through it’s years of graphical development.

“Animation is a graphic representation of drawings to show movement within those drawings. A series of drawings are linked together and usually photographed by a camera. The drawings have been slightly changed between individualized frames so when they are played back in rapid succession (24 frames per second) there appears to be seamless movement within the drawings (Myers, 2000).”   

What I was able to extract from my research on the history of animation, was that the movement first started in the 1900s, roughly around 1910. Where about the very first early animation sequence, was sketched and produced by the American artist J. Stuart Blackton.  

 “J. Stuart Blackton, American Artist”

  

 “The very first animation sequence”

“Pioneers of animation include Winsor McCay of the United States and Emile Cohl and Georges Melies of France. Some consider McCay’s Sinking of the Lusitania from 1918 as the first animated feature film.
Early animations, which started appearing before 1910, consisted of simple drawings photographed one at a time. It was extremely labour intensive as there were literally hundreds of drawings per minute of film. The development of celluloid around 1913 quickly made animation easier to manage. Instead of numerous drawings, the animator now could make a complex background and/or foreground and sandwich moving characters in between several other pieces of celluloid, which is transparent except for where drawings are painted on it. This made it unnecessary to repeatedly draw the background as it remained static and only the characters moved. It also created an illusion of depth, especially if foreground elements were placed in the frames (Myers, 2000).”   

The principle of animation, I shows similar traits that connects it directly back to the general theory of evolution. It is based on how a single frame for an animated sequence was multiplied by twenty four frames to make up for one second of movement, the process of this was carried out without lack of precession or lack of hard manual labour.    

What I find commendable and inspiring about the methods that they used back in those times, was the amount of physical creativity that they put into making a simple a short animation sequence. Where I can relate in terms of my work as a Graphic/ 3D Animator. Mostly I like the idea that for an animator in those days, to project ideas visually and accordingly, they would have to put in a whole lot of commitment into their work. Also I think it was down to their level of professionalism and their passion for it, which was most probably the fuel to their undying determination to get the right results. The amount of time that was spent for a short animation, came from producing hundreds of drawings literally. This has come to make me appreciate the initial concept of animation, being that I have experienced the method of frame by frame animating. By my opinion I can say in confidence that animation in general is one of the best and strongest art movements ever created.

“Walt Disney took animation to a new level. He was the first animator to add sound to his movie cartoons with the premiere of Steamboat Willie in 1928.”

“Pioneers of animation include Winsor McCay of the United States and Emile Cohl and Georges Melies of France. Some consider McCay’s Sinking of the Lusitania from 1918 as the first animated feature film.
Early animations, which started appearing before 1910, consisted of simple drawings photographed one at a time. It was extremely labour intensive as there were literally hundreds of drawings per minute of film. The development of celluloid around 1913 quickly made animation easier to manage. Instead of numerous drawings, the animator now could make a complex background and/or foreground and sandwich moving characters in between several other pieces of celluloid, which is transparent except for where drawings are painted on it. This made it unnecessary to repeatedly draw the background as it remained static and only the characters moved. It also created an illusion of depth, especially if foreground elements were placed in the frames (Myers, 2000).”

The principle of animation, I shows similar traits that connects it directly back to the general theory of evolution. It is based on how a single frame for an animated sequence was multiplied by twenty four frames to make up for one second of movement, the process of this was carried out without lack of precession or lack of hard manual labour.

 What I find commendable and inspiring about the methods that they used back in those times, was the amount of physical creativity that they put into making a simple a short animation sequence. Where I can relate in terms of my work as a Graphic/ 3D Animator. Mostly I like the idea that for an animator in those days, to project ideas visually and accordingly, they would have to put in a whole lot of commitment into their work. Also I think it was down to their level of professionalism and their passion for it, which was most probably the fuel to their undying determination to get the right results. The amount of time that was spent for a short animation, came from producing hundreds of drawings literally. This has come to make me appreciate the initial concept of animation, being that I have experienced the method of frame by frame animating. By my opinion I can say in confidence that animation in general is one of the best and strongest art movements ever created.

“Gerie The Dinosaur, First full length Animation sequence”

“Walt Disney took animation to a new level. He was the first animator to add sound to his movie cartoons with the premiere of Steamboat Willie in 1928.”

“Steam Boat Willie, First sound animation”

“The Steam Boat Willie was one of the most iconic animations of the twentieth century, because it was the first animation to use synchronised sound with motion. This brought about a whole new perspective in how animation was made. From this animation starring the Walt Disney representative (Mickey Mouse), the Disney Company grew exponentially through their years of making cartoon animations (Wikipedia, 2010).” 

I think what made the animation give such an impact, is how unlike any over animation produced around that period Which was how it took the viewers on a journey of unexpected situations that were inventive and different, as well as long length. 

“In 1937, he produced the first full length animated feature film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.”

“Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

“Being one of the most influential animated films of all time, the animation Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was a financial success. So much so that it enabled Disney to continue making animated films. The concept of the story was so original that  it lead the way for all over Disney classics .

It is because the story was so original and fresh that the studio reused the story formula of Snow White – an innocent young heroine, a powerful, mature villainess, comical sidekicks, a dashing hero and true love prevailing in the end – in following animations such as; Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and The Little Mermaid. The success of the film’s use of expressionism ensured its use as a storytelling device in later Disney films, particularly Pinocchio and Fantasia. The story pattern also influenced live-action films, including The Wizard of Oz and Citizen Kane (Allan, 2010).”

What I like most about the story formula used to portray the animation Snow White is how it had such an impact on the making of animated films that it created an influential pattern for other stories to be told. Also I like the idea of how the studio was able to take formula to the story and re-create it through other various animations. The fact that they chose to not let the story pattern die out but to push it to a further extension, I find shows professional thinking in the area of storytelling.

With the development of computers, animation took on a whole new meaning. Many feature films of today had animation incorporated into them for special effects. A film like Star Wars by George Lucas would rely heavily on computer animation for many of its special effects.

“Toy Story, produced by Walt Disney Productions and Pixar Animation Studios, became the first full length feature film animated entirely on computers when it was released in 1995 (Myers, 2000).”

“Toy story, 1995”

“Toy Story, Disney’s most innovative feature-length film to date, is not only a landmark in computer animation, but also manages to retain the action-packed plot line and light-hearted comedy that have given Disney a virtual stranglehold on children’s films. Toy Story is the definitive showcase of the power of computer animation (Wuy, 2010).”

Toy Story has been a source of inspiration for me since day one, and from then I have grown to understand the amount of hard work and innovative action that was taken to create it. What I admire the most about Toy Story is that it took people to a new setting of visual graphics, which allowed not only children but adults to think more imaginative. I also find that the initial story combined with the computer animated graphics, set up the perfect presentation using the skills of professional animators and fusing that with the purity of a child’s imagination.

Bibliography

Paul Myers. (2000). FI. http://www.fi.edu/fellows/fellow5/may99/History/history.html

Wikipedia. 2010. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Age_of_American_animation

Audrey Wuy. (2010). Tech, Mit. http://tech.mit.edu/V115/N61/toystory.61a.html

Robin Allan. (2010). Disney Wikia. http://disney.wikia.com/wiki/Legacy_of_Snow_White_and_the_Seven_Dwarfs

Image1,2&3. http://www.inkwellimagesink.com/pages/articles/CentennialOfAmericanAnimation.shtml

Image4. http://www.jurassicparkterror.com/othermovies.shtml

Image5. http://sandycrum.com/images/gertie.jpg

Image6&7. Cartoon review site. 2003. http://www.cartoonreviewsite.com/series/mm/sw.htm

Image8. Impawards. Face3Media. 2010. http://www.impawards.com/1937/snow_white_and_the_seven_dwarfs.html

Image9. EKD. 2010. www.ekd.com/filmcard/1674

 

In this article I will be disgusting the typeface Helvetica and the methods of production that it involved from its creation in the mid 15th century. I will also be analysing some information based on the typeface Helvetica from a third source, which was produced by Graphic/ 3D Designer John Bolvyn.   

“Helvetica Font Typeface, sans serif”

“Helvetica is a widely used sans-serif typeface developed in 1957 by Swiss typeface designer Max Miedinger with Eduard Hoffmann. Helvetica was developed in 1957 by Max Miedinger with Eduard Hoffmann at the Haas’sche Schriftgiesserei (Haas type foundry) of Münchenstein, Switzerland. Haas set out to design a new sans-serif typeface that could compete with the successful Akzidenz-Grotesk in the Swiss market.

Originally called Neue Haas Grotesk, its design was based on Schelter-Grotesk and Haas’ Normal Grotesk. The aim of the new design was to create a neutral typeface that had great clarity, no intrinsic meaning in its form, and could be used on a wide variety of signage. When Linotype adopted Neue Haas Grotesk (which was never planned to be a full range of mechanical and hot-metal typefaces) its design was reworked (Wallis, 2010).”

Looking at how Max Miedinger sought to design the Helvetica typeface I found creative in a sense of how he used two styles of type, that gave the style a specific look. Which was not too strong and not too light in presentation. I personally like the idea of how he combined two features to make up a levelled form of typography. 

“After the success of Univers, Arthur Ritzel of Stempel redesigned Neue Haas Grotesk into a larger family.

In 1960, the typeface’s name was changed by Haas’ German parent company Stempel to Helvetica (derived from Confoederatio Helvetica, the Latin name for Switzerland) in order to make it more marketable internationally. It was initially suggested that the type be called ‘Helvetia’ which is the original Latin name for Switzerland. This was ignored by Eduard Hoffmann as he decided it wouldn’t be appropriate to name a type after a country. He then decided on ‘Helvetica’ as this meant ‘Swiss’ as opposed to ‘Switzerland’ (Wallis, 2010).”

I will say that I like this article more than the other because I saw the movie ‘Helvetica’ and I really liked it. So searching information and sources about Helvetica itself and its role in the typography of today was something I enjoyed. Through the movie and by searching again on Wikipedia, I’ve learned that Helvetica was originally swiss and it was called Die Neue Haas Grotesk because it was based on the font Schelter – Grotesk. Later in years and also for market purpose, Haas (german company) gave it the name Helvetica because of Confoederatio Helvetica (latin name for Switzerland).

“Helvetica Type font poster advert”

From the already designed typefaces that were in the Swiss market, the Haas type foundry set up a task to create a fresh new sans-serif design typeface that would have the right elements enabling it to compete with the Akzidenz-Grotesk in the Swiss market.

“T-shirt Design of Helbotica (Helvetica Typeface)”

From the already designed typefaces that were in the Swiss market, the Haas type foundry set up a task to create a fresh new sans-serif design typeface that would have the right elements enabling it to compete with the Akzidenz-Grotesk in the Swiss market.

I believe the primary objective of their aim was to produce a new design style that was bold but humble, and that did not come across too strongly through it’s features. Also I think their intentions were to make the typeface flexible, in a way that it could be used for a wide range of people and most probably fellow typographers. What interests me is when the linotype adopted the Neue Haas Grotesk, the ideas for the typeface design was thought through more considerately. I think they wanted to produce it with a lesser range of hot-metal and mechanical typefaces, so basically to get it at the standard that they originally aimed for the design was reworked.   

By reading from John’s analysis on the history of Helvetica, I was able to gain a better understanding of the methods that Haas (german company) used as a means of pushing the typeface in the right direction. I personally agree with John on how observing a specific subject like Helvetica for example can be more appealing. In my opinion I think John is stating that extracting information both from the internet as well as from a visual presentation can help a person have a clearer view on the subject.

I also like the point he made with the Haas (german company). “For market purposes, Haas (german company) gave it the name Helvetica”. According to John’s analysis the german company wanted the typeface to go further in the market, so they changed the original name to Helvetica. Which I think gave it a stronger representation, being that the name was based on a latin name for Switzerland.

Bibliography

Lawrence W Wallis. (2010). Freebase. http://www.freebase.com/view/en/helvetica

Lawrence W Wallis. (2010). Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/index.html?curid=147375

Image1. http://myxmanifest.wordpress.com/2009/06/01/type-nerds/

Image2. http://www.toddroeth.com/class/images/33.jpg

Image3. gadgets.zezore.com/archives/397

This article is a basic analysis of the penguin books, which were produced by Tschichold. The basis of my observation is to verify the presentational style and unique illustrations of the penguin book designs.

Penguin Books has paid particular attention to the design of its books since recruiting German typographer Jan Tschichold in 1947. The early minimalist designs were modernised by Italian art director Germano Facetti, who joined Penguin in 1961. The new classics were known as “Black Classics” for their black covers, which also featured artwork appropriate to the topic and period of the work. This design was later revised to have pale yellow covers with a black spine, colour-coded with a small mark to indicate language and period (red for English, purple for ancient Latin and Greek, yellow for medieval and continental European, and green for other languages).

In 2002, Penguin announced it was redesigning its entire catalogue. The redesign restored the black cover, adding a white stripe and orange lettering. The text page design was also overhauled to follow a more closely-prescribed template, allowing for faster copyediting and typesetting, but reducing the options for individual design variations suggested by a text’s structure or historical context (for example, in the choice of text typeface). Prior to 2002, the text page typography of each book in the Classics series had been overseen by a team of in-house designers; this department was closed in 2003 as part of the production costs rationalisation of the Classics list, and any design work is now done by editors and outside suppliers (Wikipedia, 2010).”

From observing the Curwen press as well as the Penguin books, I find that both has similar qualities on how they both design their products, but also features that separate them. One being how the Curwen press primary objective was to print books specifically for libraries, where as the Penguin books concentrated on their presentational design concepts. With the Penguin book designs their concepts are based on simplicity, also they keep to their traditional way of design. Where with the Curwen press was aimed on more modernised ideas, based on their cover concepts.

“Classic Penguin books design concepts”

“Everything is Illuminated Penguin Book (Front Cover)”

“Collection of published Peguin Books”

“Tschichold was equally rigorous in the design of special sets of books published by Penguin. These included Penguin Modern Painters, introduced in 1944 by the art historian Sir Kenneth Clark to popularise modern art to “the wide public outside the art galleries”, and the Penguin Shakespeare Series, which had the same democratising objective for William Shakespeare’s plays. Among Tschichold’s innovations was to persuade Allen Lane to allow Penguin to take advantage of recent advances in printing by using illustration on the jackets of particular sets of books such as the Shakespeare Series (Design Museum, 2006).”

Based on this fraction of research that relates to the design of the Penguin books, I think the basis of the design concept was influenced on the designs of William Shakespeare’s play designs. The idea I believe was to attract a wider audience by using modernised art forms as well as combining the style with illustrations based on designs by William Shakespeare. I think they chose to idolise his work in terms of design, because he had a natural understanding of what elements to use to attract specific audiences.

Bibliography 

Wikipedia. (2010). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penguin_Classics

Image1. Corey Doctorow. Boing Boing. (2009). http://boingboing.net/2009/09/03/classic-penguin-book.html

Image2. http://www.benjaminfaulkner.com/gallery/prescript/penguinresize.jpg

Image3. jamesmuspratt.com/photography/penguin-books

Design Museum. (2006). http://designmuseum.org/design/penguin-books

In this article I will be analyzing the work of iconic typographer Jan Tschichold and observe the specific elements that separates from other artists type fonts.

“Tschichold is the best known publicist and practitioner of the ’new typography’ that developed in Europe between the wars. His first interest was in antiquarian lettering. In 1923, after his first exposure to the Bauhaus, Tschichold changed his style completely. At the Bauhaus, classical form was to be abandoned and the structure and function of everything was to be rethought. Tschichold was hooked. For a while, he even Russianised his name to Ivan to identify himself more closely with the left. He began to promote aggressively the new typography in printing trade journals and a series of practical manuals.

The ‘new typography’ was strongly in favour of asymmetry and bold sans serif typefaces. He was condemned by the Nazis for creating un-German typography and accused of ‘Kulturbolschevismus’, and was arrested and interned for a while. He took refuge in Switzerland in 1935. While in Switzerland he published ‘Asymmetric Typography’ where he uncompromisingly advocated the new typography. True to character, he performed a volte face in the 1940s and came to the conclusion that the ‘new typography’ was inherently Fascist. His later typefaces were in a new classical style. He designed only one widely used typeface – Sabon. In England, he is best known for his redesigned of Penguin books in 1946.

There can be neither a genuinely new, nor a ‘reactionary’ typography, but only good or bad typography (Davies, 2000).”

What I liked about Jan Tschichold’s way of working, was how he analyzed his own style of work in a absolute way. Where he would push the potential of his work to the preferred standard that gave it a more unique and relevant look.

“Font design by Jan Tschichold (Sabon)”

My understanding of Jan Tschichold is that he focused on making his work (typography) absolute, to the point where it would either be given a positive or negative response. I personally like the concept of his style of work ethics, where he has used two separate typefaces and combined there elements to create another typeface that is both asymmetry and bold sans serif.

He pushes his work to a distinctive standard that is also differential as well as versatile. Also by keeping true to his style of type he seeks to keep maintaining originality, which I think what makes his work come across modernised for a longer period of time. 

“The mid 1920s was a period of great productivity for Albers and Moholy. Before joining the Bauhaus, Moholy experimented with ideas of style and authorship, and he even assigned the execution of some of his paintings – such as Telephone Picture EM1 (1922) – to a sign painter. The title refers to his claim that he might as well have ordered the paintings over the telephone. It was around this time that he began to title works with a combination of letters and numbers akin to a scientific formula, reflecting his desire to purge the artist’s touch from his work and create instead a pure order from impersonal compositional elements (Tate, 2006).” 

What I find interesting about Tschichold source of inspiration is how it allowed him to make creative preparations on his own style, to improve and re-create. Which is how I believe his work has come to be so strong, from how he observes things and coverts the strength of there concepts to his line of typographic skills. 

Bibliography

Image2. David Johnson-Davies. 2000. Identifont. http://www.identifont.com/show?14O

Image1. Swiss Type Design. 2008. http://www.swisstypedesign.ch/designer/15/

Tate. 2006. http://www.tate.org.uk/modern/exhibitions/albersmoholy/rooms/room2.shtm

This article is based on the lecture that covers information about Jan Tschichold, Penguin books and the Curwen Press. Which also verifies the links that connect the artistic side to the style and presentational form that Jan Tschichold projects with the work that he has produced, using printing methods (Curwen press) and modernised ideas.    

“The Curwen Press has been known as the most important letterpress trade printer in England throughout much of the 20th century. In 1984 the Curwen Press closed and sold its entire composing room to Ian Mortimer, proprietor of I.M. Imprimit in London.    

‘Ian Mortimer has virtually single-handedly put medieval history back in the hands of ordinary readers, combining scrupulous research with a wonderfully iconoclastic approach to storytelling .’
– Dominic Sandbrook (Daily Telegraph)    

The Curwen archive is still intact and was recently sold to the Barabrian Press of Mission, British Columbia, who have announced a forthcoming book, The Curwen Project, scheduled for publication in 2010.    

Barbarian Press remains an entirely letterpress operation. Which has nine presses including three 19th century hand presses(Razzell, 2009).”   

Curwen archive acquired by Barbarian Press, ‘The Curwen Project’ forthcoming  

 

I think that the Curwen press shows unique equalities in its design layout. The image above shows a clear representation of the complex details that the Curwen press consists of. This makes it understandable from how it has made such an impact on 20th Century letter pressing. 

“The Curwen Press was founded in 1863 to print music. After Harold Curwen joined in 1908, it began to print high quality limited edition books and did much to advance the use of colour lithography. When Oliver Simon joined he used his contacts with the Royal College of Art employing artists such as Paul Nash and Edward Bawden (LTM collection, 2007).” 

From my perspective view of the Curwen Press, it has brought about a new method of design solution to producing book covers with high quality images and artistic illustrations. The style that it portrays gives an original sense of innovative sophistication, that depicted new elements to book cover designs. The Curwen archive is a clear example of the complex craftsmanship that follows the result that is displayed on the image below. The image is one of many from a large selection of book covers, produced by the Curwen press. 

 The design is very explicit and precise with the concept that it depicts, based on the attractions of London. I think it shows a unique method of executing colour with both presentational layout and mid toned illustrations. 

 

“See London by coach, by Edward Purser Lancaster, 1948″ 

Here is another image produced by the Curwen press, that depicts another well represented illustration of the modernised style. What I have noticed about most of the cover designs, from my observation most of the designs include elements of the London Transport logo. 

 

“Autumn hues, by Walter E Spradbery, 1936″

 I took further analysis into the topic and found out that, ‘Curwen of the Curwen Press and Frank Pick of the London Passenger Transport Board, two men who – both in partnership and separately – were to play an influential role in the promotion and dissemination of well-designed graphic art over the following years.’

From that I think that the collaboration between the two men used their traits to expand on their individual goals, promoting both of their styles in a more influential and powerful way for a stronger effective impact.

Bibliography

Image3&4. Ltm collection (London Transport Museum. (2007). http://www.ltmcollection.org/posters/results/results.html?IXsearchprinter=Curwen+Press

Image1. Paul Razzell. (2009). FPBA.

 http://fpba.com/blog/?tag=printers-flowers

Image2. Library. 2000. http://www.library.ualberta.ca/specialcollections/text_pages/curwen/randimages/cur1.jpg

This Article will be concentrating on the work of the underground electrical draughtsman Harry Beck. Which will also be covering the developments of his tube map concept and how he has formed it into huge benefit for the London transport underground.
 
 “The striking Tube map that is recognised across the globe was the brainchild of Underground electrical draughtsman, Harry Beck, who produced this imaginative yet stunningly simple design back in 1933.
Beck based the map on the circuit diagrams he drew for his day job, stripping the sprawling Tube network down to basics.

The result was an instantly clear and comprehensible chart that would become an essential guide to London – and a template for transport maps the world over.   

Beck’s revolutionary design, with certain modifications and additions, survives to the present day and is set to serve London Underground and its millions of customers for many years to come (Garland, 2000).”   

Before I became a designer, I never took much interest or even wondered how public transport came to be what it is today. Now I have a better understanding in the area of design, and from observing the work of Harry Beck. I think his idea on using two separate elements such as the underground tube tunnels and a circuit board, was really innovative as both a designer and architect.   

“He designed a stylized map of the London Underground, known for its diagrammatic representation of the various train lines and lack of correspondence to the physical locations of stations. Beck began work on the design in 1933, and continued to work on it until his death in 1974, though he would not receive official recognition of his accomplishment until the 90s (Garland, 2010).”   

My view on the designer Harry Beck is that he was an artist that observed things in a creative and specific way that lead to a large amount of people’s benefits on transportation. From taking everyday objects and modifying them into something more complex and conceptually strong. Being a draughtsman artist his skills revolved around mechanical drawing and making preparations for scale drawings of machinery, buildings and devices.   

“Beck realised that when you’re on a train travelling underground, your geographical location is not what matters to you. The important thing is knowing how to get to your final destination, and where to change from one line to another. On his own initiative, Beck used this idea to create a revolutionary new kind of map, inspired by electrical circuit diagrams and sewer plans. Beck straightened all the tube lines, ignoring their true shapes, but making them much simpler to understand. He used only horizontals, verticals and diagonals, with different colours for each tube line. He also included a stylised River Thames, which provided a strong visual reference point for users (Anderson, 2005).”   

  “Excerpt of the London Underground
in a geographically accurate map”   

    

“Excerpt from the standard
London Underground map”   

  

By my understanding of the underground map designs produced by Beck, he basically found an interesting way of simplifying a complex system and use the concept of a circuit board diagram and used the basis of it to represent the geographic illustrations of the London underground tunnel routes. Making the journey of the travel more easier and more direct for commuters to reach their final destination. 

 

Bibliography

 

Ken Garland . (2000). Transport for London (Tfl).

http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/projectsandschemes/2443.aspx 

Image1. Ken Garland . (2010). NNDB. http://www.nndb.com/people/948/000113609/

Abigail Anderson. (2005). Icons. http://www.icons.org.uk/theicons/collection/the-tube-map/biography/harry-beck-s-revolutionary-map

Image2&3. Simon Clarke. (2000). Diagrams. http://diagrams.org/fig-pages/f00022.html