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A peculiar design
#1
I spent all day doing this:
It's a "promo" picture for when I'll shortly be starting to make my music available online...I want to "sell" myself in an unusual and interesting way, especially as many other artists at the same site merely use quite ordinary photos as a shop-window.

I thought some of you'd be interested in it..and if you've any comments, I'd be glad to hear them.

I started off with a few photos, duplicated, resized and with a frame action run on most of them: quite a few layers, as I'm sure you appreciate. I think there were only 3 original pics(maybe 4?)...I didn't really have a method; I knew somehow what I wanted to say(though I cannot describe it in words yet) and just kept going until I felt happy with it.

[Image: design.jpg]
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
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#2
Interesting approach, Zig. I think this will work very well (but still no crossroads)...
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#3
I like the design very much. My only suggestion would be give a bit of gradient color in the background, specially because of your picture at the left, the pose makes me think as if it were resting in a board or maybe adding some shadows to the big frames?.

Also could be a textured layer, and the texture could be one of your picture of a guitar but blend into black at the top not to be too distracting from the main subject ?

I really admire your way of working frames. I know how to do them but sometimes I just think they don't have the right proportion with the image....
A work of art which did not begin in emotion is not art.
Paul Cezanne
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#4
Zig,

I admire your dedication!
I can see how you spent a whole day doing this.

I like the idea of putting your portrait and the tree together, and both are good pictures. The black and while works well with the frames you designed, and frames work well too.

The only criticism I have (and I feel terrible having any criticism on something that so much diligence was invested in) is that there is a bit too much "clutter"
I envision you sitting at the computer having this idea of repeating frames and then you just dove into it. but actually looking at it, I find the small, repetitive elements a bit distracting.
I whish there was more attention on the tree, and one clear line to follow, even if that sounds boring.

For example, I think you could use the front part, i. e. your portrait, the picture of the tree and the repetitions in between, but make the tree and the repetitions a bit larger

jsut to give you a vague idea (this is a very very quick draw, just to show proportions)

[Image: design%20alt.jpg]

Others might disagree, and I am sorry if you don't like my suggestion,
but I also know that sometimes I look at things I designed and I loved them and put a lot of heart into it, but then later think wow, I really overdid it there.

anyway, great creativity!!

Greetings, Uli
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#5
Uli, that's a brill idea: less clutter. In fact, that's exactly the same advice a friend gave me with a track once, and it turned out a better track as a result. Ta mate. I think I only need it to grab attention for a few seconds, or to raise my profile a wee bit; its purpose is to just grab a would-be punter's attention. I'm on it.
Oh..and have no worries: am absolutely cool with your input and honesty..that's what constructive criticism is for. Big Grin
Yes, Irma, now I'm thinking of that, the layered grad/texture would be cool; I might see if I can resue an earlier incarnation of the design(I'm not sure my History is big enough).
My goodness, Rob, you never cease to amaze me: you remembered the crossroads thing: outstanding, that man.
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
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#6
Uli, that's a brill idea: less clutter. In fact, that's exactly the same advice a friend gave me with a track once, and it turned out a better track as a result. Ta mate. I think I only need it to grab attention for a few seconds, or to raise my profile a wee bit; its purpose is to just grab a would-be punter's attention. I'm on it.
Oh..and have no worries: am absolutely cool with your input and honesty..that's what constructive criticism is for. Big Grin
Yes, Irma, now I'm thinking of that, the layered grad/texture would be cool; I might see if I can resue an earlier incarnation of the design(I'm not sure my History is big enough).
My goodness, Rob, you never cease to amaze me: you remembered the crossroads thing: outstanding, that man.
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
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#7
Oh heck. That doubling thing is happening again.
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
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#8
Zig Wrote:Oh heck. That doubling thing is happening again.
Oh heck. That doubling thing is happening again.
Oh heck. That doubling thing is happening again.
Oh heck. That doubling thing is happening again.









Big Grin Big Grin Got your message thanks.Smile
Lumix LX5.
Canon 350 D.+ 18-55 Kit lens + Tamron 70-300 macro. + Canon 50mm f1.8 + Manfrotto tripod, in bag.
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#9
Top man, nt.
(actually...I might have been in error mate: I hadn't set up my monny profile correctly: rufus attests to Photobox still being OK too.)
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
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#10
Zig you know I'm a big fan of your work, so I hope you take this post the way I intend it... (ie in a positive way, trying to help, and it's just my opinion) :/
I know you put a lot of time into this and it kills me to pick it to pieces, but you asked for an honest opinion so I'm going to give you one!

I really like the photo of yourself and the tree that you chose to use here, but unfortunately I'm not really wowed by the way you've put it together.
Uli's suggestion about removing clutter is an excellent one IMHO, but I'd go even further than that.

I think the photo of you is great, but the dreamy/glowy/blurry effect you've used in it looks a little too photoshopped for my liking.
The photoshopped frames you've used also look photoshopped, and the colour of the "wood" doesn't help either. It takes my attention away from the lovely b/w images and directs it towards the fairly mundane frames.
While it's fine to use a high-key photo of yourself, placing the whole thing against a white background tends to make the photo fall a bit flat instead of jumping out at the viewer IMHO.
Also the photoshopped 3D effects aren't convincing without shadows, and the fact you've used a drop shadow on your name kind of makes that inconsistency more obvious.

The "matt board" space you've allowed between the tree photo and its frame looks really good. If you also gave the photo of yourself a similar treatment then it would really give it some breathing space.
Actually, looking back at your original post I can see that large framed image in the background that looks very interesting. Can we see what that looks like by itself?

I've had a bit of a play with the portrait of yourself to try to illustrate some of what I'm talking about. I'm not completely happy with my example, but hopefully you can see where I'm coming from. It is an attempt to put the emphasis on the the artist, which is where it should be. I couldn't play with the tree photo due to it being too low-res in the sample you posted above. This is just something to get the creative juices flowing...

[Image: Zig.jpg]

The trouble with photoshop is that it has too many cool little effects and tricks... it's sometimes hard to leave them alone.
This is all just my opinion. Feel free to disagree with me and tell me I don't know what I'm on about. I'm certainly no world authority when it comes to graphic design. Tongue

Oh, and I hope the music sales go well! Big Grin
Adrian Broughton
My Website: www.BroughtonPhoto.com.au
My Blog: blog.BroughtonPhoto.com.au
You can also visit me on Facebook!
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Einstein.
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#11
Hey Kombi,

I know it's for Zig to answer your input here, just wanting to add that, even thought I agree with most your suggestions, like the shadows and matting space etc,
in the end this is not so much about one singular portrait as about the whole effect, isn't it? so what if it looks photoshopped?
I would choose your version to give to my grandmother to hang up and she would love it (well, Zig's granny for that matter),
but for an ad why not play a little. Tells people something about you too, doesn't it?

Anyway, there is a lot to play with here!

Uli

PS> Zig, another thing that just occured to me as I am looking at Kombi's free standing version is that the strap of the guitar is awkwardly cutting your throat.... gosh, maybe I am getting overly picky now.. ?
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#12
Sorry I wasn't clear in my post... the example I posted wasn't meant to actually be an alternative to the promo shot. It was just trying to illustrate some of the points I was saying in my post.
I think incorporating the tree photo somehow in the design is a great idea, and I'm interested to see the full version of that composite image in the frame at the very back of Zig's original post.

And as for "so what if it looks photoshopped?" You make a good point. It's purely a matter of personal preference, and I'm not saying that Zig should go for a super-realistic look instead of a photoshopped look.

Often though scattered around the web (and in my own works) I see images that look photoshopped but are trying hard not to look photoshopped, and that's where the problem lies I believe. I have no problem with images that embrace any particular "look", but to me the important thing is that they are successfull in achieving that look - if you begin to mix styles in a single image then things can often fall apart. I'm sure there are a few examples where mixing styles works really well, but more often I think it doesn't.

hmmm... this is a very interesting discussion! Smile
Adrian Broughton
My Website: www.BroughtonPhoto.com.au
My Blog: blog.BroughtonPhoto.com.au
You can also visit me on Facebook!
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Einstein.
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#13
Mixing styles ... that is interesting to me...

What would it be an example of mixing styles?
A work of art which did not begin in emotion is not art.
Paul Cezanne
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#14
Kombi, I was just going to ask something very similar: What is an example of overdone?

Personally, I thought Zig did a very good job (and I understand you don't entirely disagree with that), to me the color of the frames in combination with the BW pics, seems ok and not trying-to-hard. I have sort of an image in mind of overdone editing, particularly in Chinese designs you will find plenty of it, but I couldn't through them in one bucket with what Zig did (*wondering where he is, back to photoshopping overnight..?).

Anyway, thank you Zig for kicking of this interesiting thread on aesthetics, or isn't that what this is about?

Uli
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#15
..er...
:|

I reckon this has all gone a bit microscopic for my own purposes...but am glad the thread has taken a life of its own.
Adrian; sharp stuff, spot on: I could go for getting lighting globally correct, yet I'd never finish the darned pic...and it only has to be a less-crummy one than everyone else's point+shoot, with dimensions of about 290(W)x430(H)
Yes, to the generic P-shoppiness: this is because I don't actually know yet how to customise the frame actions, nor can I be bothered to be honest. I quite liked the tackiness as part of the framing.
Also, to be honest, when I "mix styles", I'm not mixing anything, I'm merely using disparate pre-sets incongruously and in an unskilled manner...no need to be as polite as this, Ade! Big Grin
I know I wanted to avoid the generic, pathological look of most "Christian" people-pics(and even make an aside comment on this tacky genre): whenever you get a picture of some grinning, money-led pastor, or Your Happy Perfect Christian Family, it's always put through the Grin-Like-A-Religion-Addicted-Idiot Filter..and thus makes no effort to draw alongside to people: rather, this approach effectively judges and abandons them, as anyone who needs Jesus often does not have much to grin inanely about, in my experience.
I suppose I wanted to convey a theme of "honesty", with "searching", whilst making a subtle comment on how people "package" or "frame" themselves; the image is an attempt to convey the idea of life being a journey in which one discards things that you could have sworn were finished, but were actually just works in progress.
And really, just to slide this subliminally into someone's awareness in the time it takes to briefly look at an image which is less than 300 pixels wide.
Jolly interesting.
The text style is naff though, yes.
Righto: it's sunny here for a change, so I'm off to photo some wild primulas, pyramid orchids and the odd cow-dropping....life in tooth and claw, eh....?! Wink
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
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#16
Zig, I haven't swung in here before as I haven't felt I had anything to add. (I still don't.) But I will say that you write some of the most intriguing and puzzling messages here. I usually need to read them a few times to sort it out, but that's a good thing.
matthewpiers.com • @matthewpiers | robertsonphoto.blogspot.com | @thewsreviews • thewsreviews.com
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#17
Blessya Matt: I know I'm a bit elliptical when I get going: I have 12 thoughts at once and only one sentence to put them in!....

Each small framed pic in the design "represents" a time in my life when I thought I had life and future all sorted out...all nicely framed up, so to speak. The tacky, shopped frames "represent" my superficiality in believing that life could be all tidied up nice and safely. The symbols within the frames are the bits of me I consider meaningful or important, either actual things I do, or how I see myself in symbolic terms(the out-of-place tree= misanthropic, an odd and remote viewpoint, maybe even an objectivity, etcWink Each different frame is a resizing or recomposing of those things from my life. In short, the whole design CAN be seen as me "saying" a bit about myself in a picture-biog sort of way...but it's deliberately vague enough so as to be just an interest-grabber designed to get the punter to wonder if my music will be interesting. If they say "hmm...that's odd" or "I know how he did that", it will be a positive response, as many is the time I've looked at others' biog-pics and either not thought anything, or have said "that looks boring", or "they look just the same as any other bog-standard , homogeneously grinning christian artist". I don't think many people would look at my design and say "oh yes, he's gonna be yet another christian rap artist"...well, that was my intent anyway.
All of which is waaaay too much detail for this thread, of course! Big Grin
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
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#18
Zig, sorry for getting microscopic and caught up on the details - I guess I assumed you were asking for a critique from a design/photoshopping point of view. Maybe some crossed wires there.

As far as the original image goes, it all makes perfect sense now that you explain it. Thanks. I guess my problem is that it needed to be explained to me in order for me to appreciate it. The image might hold a lot of meaning to you personally (as it should), and ordinarily it shouldn't matter what other people think of that. But the fact you want to use it to promote yourself to others means in this case it does matter how other people see it.

I realise you're not trying to explain your whole life to your audience, but rather you want the image to simply pique their interest and entice them to listen to your music. I admire the reasoning and thought behind it all. I also admire the photos you chose. I just think there are some distracting elements that shift my attention away from where you'd like it. Maybe it is just me?

It has been said that if a person is reading a book and they stumble across a spelling mistake, from that point onwards they no longer concentrate on the story but instead become a proof-reader checking the spelling. This is a big reason why correct spelling is important in literature; it keeps the reader focussed on the message rather than how it is being delivered.

I believe the same can be said in many other forms of expression. If I'm listening to a live music performance and hear a mistake then I'll start listening out for other mistakes rather than simply enjoying the music. Similarly, when I see things like inconsistent shadows in a piece of visual art then my eye starts to carefully examine all the shadows for consistency, taking me away from the meaning of the work.

Perhaps that says more about my personality than it does about your work... Big Grin

I can definately appreciate your desire to avoid the stereotypes associated with christian music. Good on ya!
Adrian Broughton
My Website: www.BroughtonPhoto.com.au
My Blog: blog.BroughtonPhoto.com.au
You can also visit me on Facebook!
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Einstein.
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#19
Awwwthanks Adrian. That's well put; I'm the same I feel: it's a bit like treading on a nail which is peeking out of an otherwise perfect parque floor: it's surprising that it's there...and then one starts looking around for more and treading more carefully!
D' ya know...I'm thinking of redoing the image as it's just too, er, "something" for me. One of those "hmm" moments..!Big Grin
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
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#20
I like everything, amazing work Wink
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#21
I like graphics design.
Heart
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#22
(May 11, 2008, 23:04)Mchilly Wrote: I like everything, amazing work Wink

(Jun 29, 2019, 03:47)laurawilliam Wrote: I like graphics design.
Heart

Hello and welcome to the both of you! Nice to have you here in the forums!

Please take a few minutes to post an introduction in the Introductions Section of the forums!
Barbara - Life is what you make of it!
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#23
I like this type of Design most.
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