Design Principles

  • Balance
  • Movement
  • Contrast
  • Emphasis


  • symmetry
  • asymmetry

This famous picture is a perfect example of symmetry

This is a movie poster, i think it’s a good example of asymmetry


  • Size
  • Colour
  • Shape
  • Composition

Thia is a perfect example of contrast in colour


  • line
  • repetition
  • rhythm


Emphasis is the stressing of a particular area of focus

  • Simplicity
  • Placement and Scale
  • Colour
  • Isolation



woooooo! got a D5000 for my bday ❤

Nikon D5000

Whooooopah! we haven’t had a class in a while, but were back yey!


the study of the relationships among patterns of perception and meaning is called semiotics.

Renee Magrittes

Renee Magritte

This painting was done by Renee Magritte, to show thats it’s not actually a pipe but an image of a pipe…. (hmm deep very deep haha). Margrittes point was we forget that signs ans symbols are all around us, but thats exactly what they are signs ans symbols and not the things themselves.

Signs and Signifiers

A sign is anything that makes meaning, Or in Umberto Eco’s clever formulation: “a sign is anything that can be used to tell a lie.”

Signifier and Signified
A sign is made up of a signifier and a signified…….

Metonymy: one entity is used to stand for another associated entity, most advertisements use metonymy.

We had a look at some creative advertisements on the web heres some of my favourites 😀

Ideology is a loaded word. It can mean many things. One common meaning of the term is “false consciousness,” i.e. a system of ideas that is a problem because it presents a false picture of the world.”

Class activity……  We brainstormed Masculine

  • Muscles
  • Strong
  • Blue
  • Gym
  • Football
  • Hard
  • Bad Ass
  • Fighting
  • Tough
  • Smelly (he he)
  • Cheeky
  • DIY
  • Cars

We were also given some more to think about……

I am feminine, I am weathly, I am intelligent, I am evil, I am popular

That lead us on to our next assignment, we have to compose three celebrity portraits supporting a myth or ideology associated with three different statements:

  • I am masculine
  • I am feminine
  • I am wealthy
  • I am intelligent
  • I am evil
  • I am popular

During our lab class we brainstormed ideas, and came up with the celebrity images we planned on using. I’m thinking either Lady Gaga or Jedward hmmmm..?? We can use Photoshop, illustrator, or collage. Well this assignment should be interesting.


Tha tha tha that’s all folks!



Aaron give use MOVVVEEEMENT!!!!!!

Aaron give use MOVVVEEEMENT!!!!!!

On friday last the class and I took a trip to the Irish Museum of Modern Art. We were asked by Niamh to update our blogs detailing our experience at IMMA, and also we were given a photography assignment by Stephen (cool guys). It was a day filled with joy and laughter :D.

I started of in Traces,  Traces celebrates the IMMA Limited Editions Series, introduced by the Museum in 2003. The exhibition includes a variety of print works by Irish and international artists. Various printmaking and editioning processes are exhibited which include screen-prints, etchings, lithographs and cibachrome prints. I thought the pieces in this part of the museum were really unusual, they were all very interesting . It was over here were i saw this……..

Fred Tomaselli, Untitled, 2004

Fred Tomaselli

Quick Sketch

Click here to view the original image.
Some more useful links, here, here and here.

  • Digital Inkjet print on 100% rag acid free paper 246×16cm
  • Donated by the artist in 2005
  • Edition of 100 signed and numbered

Colourful star-like forms create ecstatic explosions of colour in this digital print. Based on concepts of mapping and the idea of finding one’s place in the world.

I think the concept of mapping really worked in this piece, his use of bold, contrasting colours really made it stand ot from the rest. Colours like red, blue, green and yellow, made the print pop out against its black background. The star-like forms all connect with each other at some point with points/dots and lines, drawing your eye to the top left corner were the main mass of pattern is. The image itself doesn’t have much texture, the is no shading or tone making the image look 2D/flat.

“Tomaselli is a New York based painter, born in Santa Monica, California, in 1956. Drawing on influences from Indian miniatures to punk rock. They are characterised by the use of unorthodox materials, such as over-the-counter medicines, prescription pills, herbal remedies and psychoactive plants,cosmos.”

Another piece from the same collection of artwork i had a look at was………

Alex Katz, Untitled, 2007

Alex Katz

Quick Sketch

Click here to view the original image.
Some useful links,here, here, and here.

  • Silkscreen 131×95cm
  • Edition of 25 signed and numbered
  • Donated by the artist in 2007
This large-scale print is one of the artist celebrated portrait works.I feel the blue in this image mixed with the curved lines makes the face look a bit sad. The slanted lines of the eyes also made it look sad, he doesn’t smile and doesn’t seem to be looking at anything in particular. This is another 2D piece with no texture, tone or shading. The image was made with just two colours blue and silver. Overall line and colour are the only 2 types of visual language used. “Alex Katz an American figural artist associated with the pop art movement, born in New York in 1927, his work has been the subject of nearly 200 solo exhibitions internationally since he first exhibited in 1954.”

So of i went to Alan Phelan………..

“Fragile Absolutes presents 16 new and recent works inspired by Irish artist Alan Phelan’s ongoing engagement with political history, cultural theory, popular culture, masculinity and modified cars.”

Mosquito Man Arthur, 2007

Mosquito Man Arthur

Quick Sketch

Click here to view the original.
Some useful links here , here and here

Fragile Absolute #6

  • archival paper, toner, Eva glue, balso wood, cocktail sticks, aluminium, plaster, metal, plastic
  • 82×80×80cm
  • paper mache made from articles from the daily telegraph
  • based on Arthur Griffith

This was one of my favourite piece that i saw in the IMMA. Generally i felt the 3D sculptures were a bit more interesting. This piece caught my eye straight away, as it was very well done and very different from anything else i saw. This piece is based on Arthur Griffith, a propaganda officer for the IRA (more info on Arther can be found here). The idea of Arthur Griffiths head on a mosquitos body was because, he published a paper which the British called ‘the Mosquito Press’, this worked really well with its body being made up of newspaper clippings. By using newspaper he was able to give texture creating tone. Sharp lines gave it an edgier look, the spikes on the antennas. There wasn’t much colour used in this, but i dont think much  colour was needed.

I’m glad we had the oppertunity to leave the classroom for a change, it really was a nice way to get to know each other a lil better before our mid-term. It also helps getting a change of scenery once in a while. It was interesting to see how art has evolved over the years. I thought some of them were very interesting. I really enjoyed the children’s hospital section it was really creepy, you got an ery feeling as soon as you heard the old music seeping through the rooms. Click here and here for some links. O by the way the coffee  shop was a rip off!!!!!

For our digital photography assignment we were given Nikon D-SLR camera, and a list of objectives to be achieved , like a photo with diagonal lines, curved lines, complimentary colours, movement, blur…… HOWEVER! there wasn’t enough cameras to go around so me and a couple of other people had to make do with our own little smelly cameras :P. Therefore we were not able to complete the task properly as we needed aperture, shutter, and iso settings which we did not have :(.  Aww well sure we still got the idea. Heres some photos i took myself…………….. 😀

Naomi and the Ball

Naomi and the Ball

The lone snowman

The lone snowman

Complimentary colours

Complimentary colours

Beauty and the Beast

Beauty and the Beast



So thats about it from me this week

Until we meet again………..

Sin City

We were given an assignment to put a 2 min photo slide show together using, iMovie ’09. I thoroughly enjoyed this and I cant wait to see what we’ll be doing next. Click Here to watch my video. I got  88% or 22 out of 25 for my project YIPPPEEEEEEE!!!

Sin City


This week in Visual Language we had a look at, digital imaging. A lil bit more technical than previous weeks, but i really enjoyed it, as boring as that might sound.

Well lets get the ball rolling with…………

  • Bitmaps
  • Bitmap Imaging Formats
  • Vectors
  • Photoshop


A bitmap graphic (raster) is basically a large grid with a lot of little squares. If you put a different colour in each little square, you can build an image square by square. When you stand far enough away from the grid, the individual grid squares blend together and you see a complete image. The little squares are called pixels (picture element software).

Full image

Full image

Bitmap Grid

Bitmap Grid

The image quality is determined by its size and resolution. Resolution could be the Dots per inch (DPI). The traditional rule of thumb is DPI for images that will only appear online and 300 DPI for images that will be commercially printed.Also it could mean how many dots across by how many dots down u want to appear on your screen , such as, 800×600, 1024×768 etc.

Bitmap Image Formats

  • TIFF (.tif)
  • BMP (.bmp)
  • PICT (.pct)
  • GIF (.gif)
  • JPEG (.jpg)

GIF (graphic Interchange Format)

  • 256 colours max.
  • Can be animated
  • Allows single-bit transparency

JPEG (join Photographic Experts Group)

  • 16-bit format
  • Millions of colors at once
  • Perfect for photographs

PNG (Portable Network Graphics)

  • png-8 similar to gif
  • png-24 similar to jpeg, but not half as good


Rather than  being composed of pixels, vectors consist of point, lines and curves. The advantages of vectors are that the file sizes are usually quite small, the y have infinite resolution no matter how large you expand. On the other hand they are not well suited to photographic images, and they are not universally interoperable as bitmaps.


A graphic editing program developed and published by adobe systems.

[Photoshop Tutorial] Heres a link to a Photoshop tutorial, you can find thousands of these on the net. Have a look i think there worth watching. I was really looking forward to getting hands on with Photoshop. I just wanted to dive right into it, but that didn’t happen :(. It’s something im really eager to try out for myself, fingers crossed.



In our lab session today, we had a task to use puppets to do a quick play. This is just another way of communicating visually. This was not one of my favourite classes as we didn’t have very long to prepare, and i hate going into something half-hearted. I wasn’t comfortable standing up in front of people with no idea what i was doing. I’d rather more time for research and planning. Puppets are most definitely not my forte.

Next week we will be going on a trip to the [IMMA]. Following our mid-term break we will begin our next assignment.

Guess what? Finished the assignment :D. Wooah Hooooo!!

Getting to the last 10 suns was beginning to get difficult, so i came up with a few unusual ideas. This picture was done using gold ink and a coffee mug,  i wanted it to look like the ring coffee sometimes makes on a table as it drips over, i think it worked out well. I used the gold ink for a more sun like effect rather than brown paint.

So that’s that done and dusted, a whole 12.5% of my grade. I’m happy with the work ive done i feel i gave it my all. I used as  many medias as i could, paint, crayons, markers, glue, glitter,ink, paper, photos, pencil, magazines ect. I made some of the sun a little abstract to add more variety. I’m looking forward to seeing what we’ll be doing next :D.

Heres a close up…..

On the other hand in our lecture we discussed colour. A colour has three qualities hue, saturation and value.

Hue is the name of a colour such as red, yellow, blue.

Saturation is the vividness of a color’s hue. Saturation measures the degree to which a colour differs from a grey to its hue.

Value is the lightness or darkness of a hue.

We talked about the colour wheel, primary, secondary and tertiary colours.

The Colour Wheel

The Colour Wheel

Alog with;
Monochromatic colours, schemes which are made up of one hue with various values and intensities of that one hue.

Complimentary colours, schemes  which  are made up of two hues directly opposite each other on the colour wheel. For example, yellow and violet or red and green or blue and orange. These combinations have the strongest contrast.

Analogous colours, schemes which are a combination of three colours directly next to each other on the colour wheel with one hue in common. For example, yellow-orange, orange, and red-orange have orange in common.

We had a quick look at ‘How to Use Colour and Style to Attract a Man’. It really was a bit of a joke, pink’ men looking for these colours enjoy romantic evenings and the arts:D. Strange.

This week we also looked at Wassily Kandinsky, a Russian painter. Known for his ingenuity with geometric shapes and use of brilliant colour.

Colour theory according to Wassily, “Colour is the keyboard, the eyes are the hammers, the soul is the piano with many strings. The artist is the hand which plays, touching one key or another, to cause vibrations in the soul”.

According to Wassily colour, like sound, evokes emotions. ALong with other formal elements, such as line, shape, and form, colour (like music) is a language that communicates to all.

He said he could hear colour and feel sound.

Well thats all for this week, see you soon :D.