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5 Schooner Way, Cardiff,



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Welcome to the Blog

This is where I will be sharing my thoughts and ideas about design related stuff, from the trivial to the (hopefully) thought provoking. Enjoy...

Designing Out of My Comfort Zone

Most designers will eventually settle into a particular 'style'. Some find that illustrative graphics are their thing, others develop a very clean minimal style, and everything inbetween. Good designers are usually able to move between styles depending on the client, rather than enforcing their own prescrpitive style on a job.


I like to think that I've been able to do what's right for my clients, finding the right approach for each client. However, I recently found myself a little bit out of my comfort zone on a recent project - a 180 page coffee table book for lovers of a vintage lifestyle. 


Home Book 2


The book is Pretty Nostalgic Home, and was written by Nicole Burnett and Sarah Legg, who run a vintage and artisan market in South Wales. The book is a must for those interested in developing a vintage home, from the kitchen to the garden via celebrations and tips for buying the right stuff.


Home Book 3


As you'll see from the images, the book required a very distinct visual identity. The writers wanted to create a  'scrapbook' approach, with the photos and annotations appearing as if they've been stuck in with love. To further develop the scrapbook illusion a handwritten font and cut out bits of paper were used to good effect.


Home Book 4


However, as most of my clients have had at least some semblance of a corporate edge I had become accustomed to certain 'givens' in my design approach - I expect everything to line up nicely where required, I still enjoy using white space to direct the eye (my instructions for this even included not leaving any white spaces!), I expect there to be a distinct focus on each page - but on this project I almost had to unlearn many of the things i've learned in my professional career and take a step back to my days of keeping a sketchbook on art A-level and the like.


Home Book 5


Having gone through that process I'm very pleased to add the project to my portfolio, not only as a creative success, but as a lesson that an old dog can learn some new tricks, making sure I keep on my toes and not take any styling issues for granted.

You can purchase the book on Amazon . Please let me know what you think of it.


Home Book 6

Posted by Dan at 14:19 on 09/03/2012