Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Blog 2 - Researching, designing and creating my portfolio

As part of my Agency Ready unit I have been asked to explain my techniques used to research, design, build and launch my new portfolio website as part of my assignment. I will discuss the decisions and choices I made during the processes of making my website. Before making anything or thinking of the design of my portfolio, I needed to decide what is the purpose of my website. Because I am a digital media student, I decided to focus on my videos and my art. Because I have videos on Youtube and on an art website called Wysp, I had to make sure my is a central hub for my social media and previous work. Before I began my research I decided I wanted to make my website a one page layout with a simple design that would work on other devices on the future. I began researching one page portfolio sites online and stumbled on a bunch of good websites like onepagemania. The common theme I loved about these examples were the header/navigation that seems to be a common theme with one page websites. What I also really liked is how people when designing would section off parts off their website with large headers. I really wanted to implement this into the design of my website because I thought it would make my sight simple, slick and easy to use. Before I began coding anything, I decided I wanted to design my website in Photoshop first. This would give me a good feeling of where my content would be, and also how big they needed to be. So I first created my Photoshop document in the size of a standard monitor resolution (1425 x 1776). I began experimenting with the integrated header and navigation bar at the top of my website, and would be visible when scrolling down my website. I first made my logo and navigation to the far left and right of the page, but then I decided it didn’t look right and made it the same width of my content (roughly 900px). After designing the layout of my website, I showed the design to my friends and classmates and changed a few things around, mainly the sizes of my headers and images. The feedback for my website were mainly positive, they liked the design of my website and thought it was very nice and easy to use. The most important thing in making my website is that it is simple, easy to use and has working links to my work. Then it came to my actually coding my website. I found it quite difficult when I got around to coding my website, but I did find it very helpful that I designed the website in Photoshop first. This let me know exactly how big everything needed to be on my website, so it made coding the CSS a lot easier. Because I find coding sometimes difficult, I made it easier to use sources online like Treehouse to learn how to code parts of my site. The thing I really learnt when making this site was how to make my code easy to read for myself, because I would reach the point where I didn't know what part was what or where a div tag for example started and ended. I took full advantage of the comment tool in HTML and made it easy for myself to section off parts of my website to easily code style in CSS. Overall I thought I did a good job with my website. It’s obviously not as flashy as some of the sites I have seen from my peers but I really like the design and experience of my site. I will not be going into the web industry as a career but this website will help as a central hub for all my social media and web presence. I intend to update my portfolio with more work I've done because I want to keep my website update for future opportunities from employers. What I've learnt from this project is that making a draft version of your website in Photoshop helps bring your idea to life.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Blog 1 - Responsive Report by Gridset

As part of my Agency Ready unit I have been asked to read the Responsive Report by Gridset. The report gathers results from people from different types of roles in organisations within the web industry and their opinions on responsive website design. These results are the positives and struggles with responsive website design based on specific key points. I have been asked to reflect on what I picked up from this report and the resources, how I feel about it and if there are any problems with the report.

The first thing I found quite interesting about the report was the different types of organisations involved in the report. For example, project managers was a surprise to see because it shows that responsive design is so becoming important in today's web industry, different roles are taking a role in responsive design. In addition, project managers, businesses managers are also taking a big role in responsive design because a website for a business is very important because of business revenue and potential clients visiting the website on different devices.

A positive and negative part of the report is the amount of people that have answered the survey. Although the number of people from different roles in organisations have doubled since the last report, one could say that just having a little over a thousand people answering the survey is just a small percentage of the number of people there are in the web industry.

One of the biggest challenges with responsive design based on the report and what seems to be a recurring theme in the gridset report is optimization and the speed. Personally working on image optimisation with the web, this seems like a problem that comes up a lot with not just responsive design, but website development. I believe that this is just an issue to do with more with internet speed (wifi and mobile data) and not to do with the actual images. One of the biggest concerns with the organisations in the report is Responsive Design needs to work on different platforms but also different connection speeds. The website Site Point and other websites seem to addresses this issue with responsive design and website speed. This website gives some good examples which I have tried with my small website and I saw a difference.
The feeling of the report generally is that responsive is difficult, but exciting. Each year there are more and more ways to do the so-called ‘right way’ in responsive design. Because every few years new technology comes out that makes not just responsive design change, but website development as a whole. To make it in the web industry you need to be a on top of the industry standard, and always be up to date with different standards and way of coding. In the report there is still feeling of frustration with the responses from the survey. Which makes me think if I’m finding frustrating from the beginner level, I can only imagine what the feeling would be if I was deeply involved in the web industry.

What I’ve learned from the report is that responsive design is very complicated and has a large community of people from different roles in organisations coming together to give their feedback and make responsive design improve. I personally enjoyed reading the report because I like to learn new things, but I have slowly realised that I don’t see myself in the web industry. The reason why I don’t see myself in this industry because slowly lost interested and found coding very difficult and for the most part frustrating. What I most enjoy is designing the websites I create and believe I would best suited as a designer and not a coder because of my background in graphic design, art and filmography. Before I first started university, I wanted to learn how to design and make professional for the web. But as I progressed into website development I found it frustrating because I felt that there are so many people out there who have been doing it less than I have but are still way more advanced than I am.

Friday, 9 October 2015

More drawings

I've decided I wanted (and needed) to draw more to add to my art portfolio over at Wysp.

Here are a few pieces I'm working on, and have finished.

Dan Soder

Dan Soder is one of my favorite comedians so I thought I would draw him and tweet him the final piece.

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Drawing Finn Bálor

There is a professional wrestler named Finn Bálor, and his body paint is badass. So I thought I would take up the challenge of trying to draw him, but I'm going to draw this picture much differently. Previously in my other drawings I didn't take too much time drawing them because they were simple images, basic lines and a few colours. But this drawing will be a lot different.

This project isn't a day or even a week job, this will take me quite a few months to finish so I will try and keep this blog post updated.

I first started where I always start when drawing, the eyes. This process part of the drawing made me realise how long this piece was going to take. It took me about an hour to do this tiny part of the picture.

The next thing to do was make progress to his other eye. I started making a lot of progress in shaping the face with visual guidelines for his nose the side of his head. This once again took a few hours to draw.

Next it was time to put in more time colouring in more of his face. I decided that I wanted to do the top half his head before I went onto doing beard. Starting to take shape.

Next I finished his cheek because I wanted to finish that part before I started to finish his forehead.

I then started working on the forehead and then tweeted the progress to @wwebalor and he favorited this and this one. 

Next was to finish the top part of his forehead and work on the orange face paint on the side of his head.

To be continued...

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Sky Saga: New game, new things to draw

Sky Saga is a new game currently in alpha. It's a block building game sort of like Minecraft but with much better graphics, an amazing art-style and concept art by Nick Miles. Normally I wouldn't be into these sort of games but they don't interest me that much, but what stood out is the art style. 

I decided I would re-create a few of the art pieces on the Sky Saga website.