Where to begin? We have spent the past three months on the project. The project, which I guess would be called the preparation for the AIGA Leadership Retreat in Chattanooga. I, along with Lillie, Kathryn, Emily, and Lyndsey, grouped up into the Screen & Press team. From the beginning, we planned out exactly what each of our responsibilities would be, and kept in touch by email, Basecamp, and phone to make sure we were progressing.
After having progressed (tremendously, if I don’t say so myself) in web design this semester, the whole team thought that it should fall to me and Kathryn to handle the building and designing of the website. Kathryn and I worked individually for two weeks to come up with ideas and designs for the site. It eventually fell to me alone to complete the website, but everyone else was still responsible for giving me good feedback.
All of the fundamental functions of the website had been finished. I, however, was afraid the site was still a bit too dull. Fortunately, our teacher suggested that I add some small features that would not hinder the viewer’s needs. Since we wanted our design to be different from the previous AIGA leadership sites, the suggestion that I implement CSS3 was perfect. CSS3 is brand new! I immediately dove in to learning all about CSS3 online, and the process was a roller coaster ride of awesome – vomit included. The images on each page were given a rounded corner on the top right and bottom left. The navigation buttons would slightly enlarge when mousing over them. These little changes had made the site already stand out to be fun and exciting, but I was not satisfied quite yet. We had an idea to make the images colorize themselves upon hovering. I searched the internets forever trying to learn how to implement this, but could not find any. I did, however, learn how to change the opacity of an image through transition. So, I came up with an idea: to put two images in the same area, the top image being the uncolored image and the bottom image being the colored image, and then create a slow transition in opacity from visible to invisible on the top image. It was a successful experiment and was quickly implemented on every page, including the credits page. Everybody took a look at the finished page, and had no complaints. Amazingly, I had no complaints as well to my own work, which is rare.
After finishing the website, I began to work on the Chattanooga Guide Card. I had spent so much time on the site that I only had a handful of days to make the card. Thus, I wanted to make it simple, clean, but nice. I knew that typography would be my true friend in this experiment, and typography has never failed me in print. Since my guide card would be for the Chattanooga Market, my concept was to make my card suggestive to strawberries. I first had a perspective grid of light green over a strawberry red background. The result was too busy and the typography was terrible. Upon several tries, the concept did not work, but I really enjoyed the colors. The solution was actually simple: my card would be printed on Celery paper, a light green paper. I decided to just stick to typography completely, and change from a horizontal layout into a vertical one. I placed the words “Food. Art. Music.” over the word “LOCAL” to make it emphasize the focal point of the market. I changed the type to Helvetica to make the stacking and kerning of the type exactly the way I wanted it, and the result was great.
I’ve already put four pages into this synopsis, so I must conclude this soon before it becomes boring. The project was a blast, and I never had enough time to do anything else – not that I’m complaining. “Every experience is valuable” is one of the philosophies I live by, and I involved myself with so many things this semester that people actually confronted me and told me how much I’ve changed. I look back and see myself at the beginning of the semester and wonder about the change myself. I have become much closer to everybody in my class because of this project. How can I be complaining?