Evaluation of Ethics Brief

Visual Communication

I feel as though our product meets the needs of the brief as I have produced a poster regarding the ethical factors of cut flowers, as well as this we have used a shared dropbox folder and have all participated well as a group in this project. We displayed the information on the poster next to an illustration that is linked with the statistic which allows the audience to put two and two together using visual communication. As well as this we also made a joint blog whereby we wrote about the planning, process, design and print stages of the project, this shows that we have read the brief and have fully understood what is expected of us.

I believe there are many strong points of visual communication throughout our poster, the first being that the audience can easily read and view our work as it is presentable on the page as it has a clear font, strong colour scheme (font to background) and also large clear illustrations. We used a bright colour scheme with light blue background,  I feel as though this helps to bring out the illustrations more than the original beige colour we had.

The downfall to our poster I feel is that there is too much typography on the poster, we were told from our peer feedback that it seems a little too crowded which I agree with. I feel if we tried to experiment with the landscape layout I feel as though we could have more space on the page therefore making it seem less compact.

I feel as though our poster could be mis-interpreted as from our peer feedback the audience said that they was not 100% sure if we were trying to say that cut flowers are a good thing or a bad thing due to some of our statistics being unclear. For example 9 out of 10 workers on flower farms are female, some thought it was a good thing, however it could be interpreted that there is inequality, or the fact that it is unfair on females to work in the poor conditions. We wanted to make the poster as unbiased as possible in order to reduce the ethical problems.

In my opinion I feel as though our poster could be improved in terms of the typography and layout of the poster, however the reason I feel we struggled in this aspect was due to the given topic of ‘cut flowers’. This is because there is limited information online ‘Cut Flowers’ and how it is bad, the main reason is for the environment (pollution & transportation). I feel as though the topic we were given prevented us from achieving our full potential. If this was a potential brief I was given as a freelancer, I would’ve declined the job opportunity as I wouldn’t want to disappoint the client.

Reflection of own working practices

I think our time keeping was mainly good for this brief even though we had 2 projects going on at the same time. Our general time keeping was good as we originally finished the design 3 days before the deadline however after completing the test prints we realised we needed to change a few aspects of the poster. This lead us to rushing the last few hours of the deadline which I feel could’ve been prevented if we had done our test prints earlier.

Our research was fairly detailed as we researched into different statistics about cut flowers, for example the environmental implications, the working conditions on the flower farms, the money the flower farms make, how much money the UK spends on cut flowers etc. I feel that the research helped us to have a strong understanding of cut flowers (as a topic) which overall allowed us to be more diverse with the poster.

My analysis of the brief was good, I had a strong understanding of what I needed to produce and what was expected of me and the group, I thoroughly believe that we have met the needs of the brief.

Overall I feel the project went well, however the project would’ve been less stressful if we had worked better with the time keeping – ensuring that we do test prints earlier than later. I found the design and concept of the poster very fun and interesting as flowers are aesthetic, however I believe that the topic of cut flowers made it much more challenging for us as a group as we were significantly affected by the limited information online for us to find. This I feel hindered our overall poster massively.

Here is the final poster of ‘Cut Flowers’.

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‘Good Design’ Evaluation

Throughout this project brief we have tried to be as sustainable as possible by reducing our amount of wastage and time by making sure we used the fastest and most effective method to produce a high quality piece of work. The main aspect we tried to reduce as much as possible was the paper wastage as this was a print based project. This was difficult as we needed to do more than 1 test print due to the group not being content with the overall design of our ethics poster. Aside to this we only undertook 2 test prints and 1 final print therefore I feel as though the paper wastage was limited as much as it possibly could have been.

We considered the ethical implications for my project, the main ethical implication four the poster was copyright infringement, however the statistics could also have been an ethical implication. I ensured that there was no copyright infringement throughout the poster as all work was created by us and also all of our statistics were non-biased and were balanced therefore the ethical problems were limited as much as possible.

For me I personally feel as though this project as allowed me to step forward as a socially conscious designer in someways as I have been able to reduce the amount of paper wastage by doing less test prints.

My personal target in the future would be to always ensure that I am consciously thinking about how the audience could interpret my work, and to remove all potential upsets in my designs if need-be.

Joint Blog

We have created a joint, shared blog in order to show our process stage, final design, how we got where we are etc. Here is the link for the joint blog:

https://citizendesigners.wordpress.com/category/cut-flowers/

We felt as though the joint blog was very difficult to get to grips with as we wasn’t 100% sure what was needed to be write about as we would’ve written it in our personal blogs, however we have written as much as we could. Below is a screenshot of our joint blog, please click on the images to enlarge them.

 

 

Feedback From Presentation

After the creation of our ethics poster on cut flowers we presented it to the class in order to gain some constructive criticism for further improvement of our design. We were told that our poster seemed too cluttered and there was too much text on the page, particularly down the side of the illustrations as it takes away the power of the illustrations and aesthetic of the poster. As well as this the text at the bottom of the page wasn’t sectioned off with thin lines as there were above so we were not consistent throughout and so the text looked as though it was ‘floating’ which was an issue we tried to fix previously however it wasn’t possible to add thin lines on the side as it was too squashed. Therefore I feel as though the layout of the poster could’ve  been the problem so we should’ve experimented with both horizontal and vertical layout. Below is a photo of our final product.

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Group Discussion of Ethics Poster

After printing our first test print we sat down together with our tutor and talked through what we liked and disliked about the poster. We came to the conclusion that our facts weren’t powerful enough and so lacked importance, this could’ve been due to the alignment of them as they appeared to be ‘floating’ on the poster, or it could’ve been the typography/ illustrations. After this we asked each other what we felt was the most important fact we wanted to portray and how we could positively change the design of the poster. Below is a photo of our first design concept.

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From this we went away as a group and decided to change things up with our design, we didn’t think of this as a ‘struggle’ or a ‘horrible task’, we considered this as design problem solving because this happens in the design world as no design is perfect and there are always problems to be made.

From this we made the facts more impactful by increasing the size of the font and making the important statistics more clear cut with good illustrations. Also we added in thin black lines to section off each statistic which removes the potential problem of ‘floating facts’. Below is an image of the final design we came up with after the group discussion.

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As you can see the design is more clear cut and defined, particularly with the short time of 2 hours we had to redesign the poster. I still feel as though there are a few elements that are needed to be improved on the poster however the change has definitely been a positive impact of the design of the poster.

Sketches of Potential Ideas

At the beginning of this brief we made each other draw two thumbnail sketches of our ideas and we will work together to use the method of elimination as to which idea we would use. My 2 sketches are shown below.
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As you can see the photo on the left was portrait, I wanted to portray the good and the bad sides of cut flowers and by doing so used some elements of visual communication and semiotics. The way I did this was to make the bad facts be on the left side where the flower was ‘dead/ dying’ and also to set the mood it was raining, whereas on the right side it was sunny and the flower was lively. I personally felt this idea was quite good as it shows the contrast between the good and the bad aspects of cut flowers clearly.

The second sketch I did was landscape as I felt that you could fit more facts in landscape. I had a central image of a bouquet of flowers and had facts springing off it. This is a more simplistic idea and didn’t really have good visual communication behind it, therefore immediately we removed this idea from the equation.

After some careful consideration and a process of elimination we decided to follow up with Rhys’ idea – shown below.

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The reason we chose Rhys’ idea was because of the good symbolism and visual communication used between the workers and farmers. It is a similar concept to my idea with the flower, however we felt by using people as a method of communication it’ll make the audience more attracted to the poster as they could potentially relate.