Thursday, 3 December 2009

Assignment 4D

Sources used:

Ferrel, J, (1995), Urban graffiti: Crime, Control, and Resistance, Youth and Society, 27 (1) Sep 95, p.73-92 1995

Sykes, J, (1979), Designing Against Vandalism, The Design Council, Oct. 1979

Assignment 4C

Reading the article and book and summarising them has highlighted key points and important information to do with graffiti and vandalism, however these sources are just two of many on the same subject. They may seem extremely believable as the facts and evidence are there but to guarantee that this is what should be believed and to expand my knowledge on the subject it would be advantageous to take my studies further.

To do so I would create a detailed list of there key points and conclusions to then find other books and articles on the same subjects. Using the library and the library cross search would allow me to do so and by reading a quick overview of the article on cross search I would decide if they were relevant.

At the end of "Urban Graffiti; Crime, Control and Resistance" there is a list of notes and references that relate to and give links to the evidence Ferrel has used to prove his points. To find out background information and grasp a better understanding of where he is coming from I would look up these references. He refers to a quote from Fiske (1991): "one has to look for the origins of evasion or resistance in the specific social circumstances of those who do this remaking." This quote is extremely important as it appears to be the inspiration to the whole introduction of the article so in this case I would take my studies further by looking up Fiske and find out he arrived at this conclusion.

"Design Against vandalism" lists all the materials and layouts that should be used to prevent vandalism so I would look up these suggested materials to find out how other people view there characteristics in connection with vandalism.

As the article and book were written quite a long time a go now I would research in to any newer books or articles by these authors on similar subjects. I could also look for reviews on the book and the article to see how other people have felt and see if they have suggested any other materials linked with the text.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Assignment 4B


"Youth and Society, Urban Graffiti; Crime, Control and Resistance" is an interesting article by Jeff Ferrel. Ferrel tackles many issues surrounding the young graffiti writer in America and looks in detail at how and why these youngsters resist authority. Before writing the article Ferrel undertakes four years of fieldwork inside the Denver, Colorado graffiti underground. This fact allows us to build trust with the author as he has been there and seen the real life situations, rather than just another academic writing about what statistics show. The primary sources that he draws upon from this field research through out the article prolongs the readers trust and belief in what he has to say and the points he has to put forward. Quotes from numerous individuals; graffiti writers, gang members and council officials as well as many mentions of past articles written on similar studies help the authors points come across smoothly and believably.

Ferrel begins the article by looking at the meaning of resistance as he believes that if you perceive its meaning in the wrong way you can not look at the situation at hand in the correct way. After looking at how resistance has been treated in different contexts in the past he comes to the conclusion that resistance should be dealt as a balanced term one that is not treated too rigidly or too loosely. After this overview of resistance he can now zoom in to the subgroup at hand to discuss it in this context. If you look at the subtitles of the article; "Forms of Graffiti and Forms of Resistance", "Urban Authority, Social Control, and the Writing of Resistance", "Resistance, Identity, and Alternative Arrangements", and "Youth and Resistance", you can see that understanding resistance really is important to understand the remaining of the article as it is dealt with in every aspect.

Many interesting points are highlighted and brought to attention within the article. The techniques that have been used and suggested in some American states to stop graffiti are shocking and seem unnecessary. However the quotes from graffiti writers in the article show that the action of authorities is met with a "pleasurable response" as it creates a bigger "adrenaline rush," which as Ferrel shows is one of the main reasons people do graffiti. This provides the reader with an important point, one that can be learnt from; The harder graffiti is tackled, resistance from graffiti writers will appear bigger, better and cleverer. So to tackle graffiti the authority themselves must become clever and disguise there actions, not letting the offenders create a bigger war. The second important point drawn in the article is that graffiti is all about community, it creates communities within communities, communities of communication between like minded people. This alternative community is said to create "status and identity" and a "sense of family" to individuals and crew members. This is said in the article to bring together ethnic minorities, keep young people away from other more serious crime and out of gangs. They contribute to the community by painting commissioned pieces for schools and youth clubs. Bringing all this together we can conclude that Ferrel is really quite positive about graffiti writing and it appears that he feels that it is a admirable thing that these kids are doing, creating alternatives to the overbuilt cities that they are forgotten about and lost in.

The book "Design Against Vandalism" tries to provide as many answers to vandalism as possible in respect to different situations and places. It offers answers to those who would be dealing with vandalism ie. local authorities, manufacturers, designers and architects. The book is split up in to different chapters, written by individuals from different fields of research making it easy for those concerned to read the most important parts for them. The book doesn't miss any details, explaining clearly why things have went wrong in the past with certain approaches, and provides ideas and inspiration to how these things could be tackled better in the future.

The book sets out first to describe what kind of vandalism there is, who it is done by and why. It highlights different reasons such as the innocence of age; young children do not understand the value of property and so will play games that may result in unintentional damage. Peer pressure, status, respect and daring are highlighted as the reason why young teens vandalise moving on to more serious reasons such as revenge to individuals or institutions, general frustration and boredom. Other reasons behind vandalism are said to be for competition, the sheer excitement, political and peer pressure campaigns and simply the unintentional vandalism created by everyday wear and tear of bad design in our environments.

Many schemes are looked in to in detail to give examples and evidence behind the authors reasoning but the scheme which is focused on the most is "The Cunningham Road Scheme" which was initiated by NACRO (National Association for the Care and Resettlement of Offenders) in Windes council housing estate, London. The author Ann Blaber describes the problems that faced the estate and why schemes to help hadn't worked in the past, coming to the conclusion that the largest cause of failure was the communication gap between tenants and council officials creating resentment between each others actions. Small group meetings between tenants and council officials were held along with a 3rd party to eradicate the resentment and get them talking about what was important. The scheme showed that involving the community in actions made them loose there feelings of apathy and helplessness and created a happier community. It is said in the book that vandalism is "one expression of the frustrations and disappointment of a community," but by eradicating this frustration and disappointment like the Cunningham Road Scheme, vandalism can slowly disappear. People start feeling like they care for there surroundings as they feel like they belong to them rather than the council coming in and doing what they want to be done making it feel like it belongs to the council. After looking at other schemes such as Bedford City Councils police scheme and surveys done in Greater London the book concludes that the key to tackling vandalism in council estates is management, community groups, feedback, scale and surveillance.

As the book believes that deliquent behaviour occurs when oppurtunities exist to do so it goes about explaining all the most vandalism prone areas so that these oppurtunities can be eliminated. It describes problems and answers to graffiti, lighting, street furniture, vending machines, toilets, garages, shops, empty property and building sites, looking in particular at schools and childrens playgrounds. It suggests what materials and layouts would be most advantagoues, and where and when alarm systems would be necessary. Overall providing all the information that one would need to create a vandalism free environment.

Both the article and the book have provided me with an expansive amount of knowledge and background in to the area of graffiti and in to vandalism as a whole. They both answer the question of why people vandalise but whereas "Design Against Vandalism" describes elaboratley why people vandalise, "Urban Graffiti; Crime, Control and Resistance" focuses more on how and why people resist authority. I feel that the articles ambitions are to show how authority have tackled resistance in the wrong way so that in the future they can look at it from the graffiti writers perspective taking in to consideration there thoughts, feelings and motives before carrying on the war of resistance. This way of reporting is quite personal as the author includes many quotes to get across these feelings. The book is more impersonal as although it draws on real experiences it is aimed more at providing straight forward descriptions and answers to places and objects. I feel both the book and the article are succesful at providing the information and conclusions they set out to provide. They are a mixture of opinion and evidence-based studies and provide help and hope for the future of tackling graffiti and vandalism.

Assignment 4A

For Assignment 3 I used the Library and Library Crossearch to find articles and books to do with all aspects of Graffiti as I produced a new idea of Graffiti removal for Assignment 2. The boks/ articles I have decided to read/ look at in more detail for Assignment 4 from my collated bibliography are; Youth and Society, Urban Graffiti: Crime, Control and Resistance and the book, Design Against Vandalism. They tackle different issues but are still appropriate to my first ideas. The article on Urban Graffiti looks at why and how graffiti writers resist authority and why they do it. Design Against Vandalism mentions graffiti but looks at the bigger issues of vandlism as a whole and how to tackle them. Together they give me a better understanding of the psychological reasons for vandalising and provide me with detailed information on how it needs to be dealt with in the future drawing on past experiences. This in turn helps me to reflect on my idea for Assignment 2 in a different light, giving me greater knowledge and inspiration for the future.

Activity 4A

Ferrel, J, (1995) Youth and Society, Urban Graffiti: Crime, Control, and Resistance

The main purpose of this article is to define what resistance is so that it can be discussed in the area of youth graffiti writing, giving a better understanding of how and why graffiti writers resist authority.

The key question the author is addressing: How does the resistance of graffiti writers and the authority of higher bodies intersect and interweave and how do graffiti writers shape resistance to existing and alternative arrangements. ("What, though, is the larger cultural and political context in which this wildly popular style of graffiti writing proliferates? And precisely what forms of authority does this graffiti writing resist?") All of the questions relate to each other and are appropriate which makes it easy to find the answers highlighted later in the article.

The most important information in this article: own experience (ongoing field research and participant observation inside the Denver, Colorado graffiti underground), over viewing and drawing from similar stories and experiments.

The key secondary sources used are: Quotes from numerous individual; graffiti writers ("Personally I want to hit on city stuff, like bridges, rather than some other person's property, They build the boringest crap around, so why not beautify it?"), gang members and council officials. Past articles written on similar studies (resistance within other areas of society; resistance in metropolitan settings, resistance among peasants and other dominated groups).

The key primary sources used are: Field research gathered by the author himself by observing and participating in the graffiti scene. Interviews he conducted with Denver legal agents and political officials. Newspaper searches and other forms of document research in various US cities.

The main inferences/ conclusions in this article: The author concludes that the right way in which we should perceive resistance in relation to graffiti writing is to focus on the various forms of everyday resistance and the situated meanings that surround and define them. Perceiving youthful graffiti in this way allows him to conclude that graffiti is not always mindless destructiveness but young people imagining and creating new social arrangements within urban environments. The author stays on track right the way through the article so it is easy to follow and understand where these conclusions arrive from.

The key concepts we need to understand: You need to grasp a good understanding of resistance so that when it is discussed with in the area of graffiti you know what the author is talking about. This concept is justified by the author explaining how resistance has been tackled unfairly in the past.

The main assumptions underlying the authors thinking: It could be argued that the author focuses too much on the positive side of graffiti and takes for granted that there are many negative issues.

If we take this line of reasoning seriously, the implications; If we take the authors line of reasoning seriously we will believe that graffiti is positive as he believes it creates community and allows troubled youth to create new and better environments instead of getting in to crime and gangs. This could be good as it puts a new perspective on graffiti and it could be taken in to consideration when tackling graffiti to create new solutions. However if people take it too seriously they could decide that graffiti is not a problem as it is helping these minority groups feel part of a community and stop trying to tackle the problem eventually leading to the situation getting out of hand.

If we fail to take the authors line of reasoning seriously, the implications: People will tackle graffiti as it has always been dealt with and not move on to better solutions by taking these explanations of how and why in to consideration.

The main points of view presented in this article: The author believes that people do not really understand what resistance is so cannot tackle it in the right way. He takes a more fair and un-biased approach creating a balance of ideas. The author presents the idea that graffiti for the young people who do it is simply a form of growing up, a way of gaining a feeling belonging and status just like any other youngster would do within a club or organisation. It's a way of life and a way of expressing there views that would other wise be ignored; they just want to be heard. Throughout the article many other peoples points of view are featured so it is fair to say that the author is not being biased.

The Design council, (1979) Design Against Vandalism

The main purpose of this book is to describe some of the measures that local authorities, manufacturers and architects can take to tackle vandalism.

The key question that the author is addressing: What has been done in the past to tackle vandalism, what has worked, what has not and how can we learn from this?

The most important information in this book is the mention and attention payed to schemes that have been done in the past to tackle vandalism.

The key primary and secondary sources used are: There are numerous authors through out the book, some who have had hand on experiences of tackling vandalism as part of a scheme and some who draw information from other peoples experiences, providing a mixture of primary and secondary sources. There is a case study which looks at one scheme in particular in a lot of detail.

The main inferences/ conclusions in this book: Vandalism can be solved but it needs to be tackled in the right way for the area that they are dealing with. They come to the conclusion that vandalism is "one expression of the frustrations and disappointments of a community." This helps us understand why they come to the conclusions of how to tackle it such as management, community groups, feedback, scale and surveillance.

The key concepts we need to understand in this book: You have to understand why people vandalise and what types of vandalism there is. They provide this information at the start of the book so that you can then go on to understand how to deal with vandalism and why certain ways work or fail.

The main assumptions underlying the authors thinking: The authors in the book don't really assume or take any information for granted as they cover every aspect with great detail. Each scheme is drawn upon numerous times and examples are always given to back up points of how actions work or do not work.

If we take this line of reasoning seriously the implications are: If people take what is said in the book seriously then they will learn a tremendous amount of how to tackle vandalism in the correct way for different situations and would hopefully be able to put this knowledge in to practice.

If we fail to take the authors line of reasoning seriously, the implications are: The same problems to do with vandalism will keep occurring as they won't have learnt from past experiences and facts.

The main points of view presented in this book are: Vandalism occurs more often to public property rather than to private property as it is seen to not belong to anyone and one person themselves will not have to deal with the damage. Vandals are less likely to be caught if they do damage to public property as surveillance is not as high. Not all vandalism is purposely done, bad design can create accidental damage and general wear and tare can be seen as vandalism.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Food Packaging

Since the start of the semester we have been doing a project on food packaging. That's a whole 3 months on one project... crazy. Now that the project is drawing to an end I am enjoying it more. All the final designs are coming together at long last and the last minute pressure is making sure that I get everything done. I would have preferred to have had a smaller time scale for this project because I enjoy creating a lot of output in a short time. However I suppose the long process has been good because I have never done any packaging design before and it has opened my eyes to the packaging design world through research and trying out techniques. I have came across the amazing packaging website and I have started paying more attention to how the food that I buy is packaged.
As the brief was to come up with a revolutionary new food source using the food and material that we were given I came up with Mustard Food Perfume as my food was mustard and my material smoke. So the concept is; mustard flavouring on your food in a puff of smoke! My goal was to approach the packaging design in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way and at the same time have a bit of fun. So I used all recyclable materials and used exciting colours that worked well together but still related to mustard. I created an aluminum bottle for my mustard food perfume and a cardboard box to package it. The bottle is a pyramid shape and the box echoes this so that it fits in perfectly (no need for extra resources to make a larger, cumbersome box.) The bottle itself is very simple, the body is shiny aluminum to fit in with the clean look of the modern kitchen and the shiny utensils and pots, the nozzle is yellow to connect with the yellow on the box and advertising and to signify that it is a mustard flavour. As there is no information on the bottle all the important info is on the box and in the booklet provided with it. I have made the graphics fun and attractive so that the consumer will not mind having the booklet and box lying around so that they can look at the information. The box is easily opened and closed so the user can pop the bottle back in if they wish.
I also came up with the idea that the product can be refilled, so instead of buying many mustard perfumes you only need to buy it once and then when it's finished you can take it back to the refill station at the supermarket, pop in a pound and refill your durable and sustainable aluminum bottle. Creating less waste! This is all explained in the booklet. The final name that I decided on for the product is Mustardo's.
We have now been told that we are to present our final product by means of a Dragons Dens style presentation with judges and all. I find this extremely exciting and hopefully this week I will make an advert to present with the rest of my work.

Magazine Mission!

For many years I have collected magazines. I started with the teenage girl magazines like Bliss and Elle girl before deciding I was mature enough to buy Elle. Although Elle and Vogue are practically the same I was never a fan of Vogue and would make sure that every month I woud get my very own copy of the glossy covered new Elle magazine to hit the newsagents. After a while I realised that Elle was the same every month, the same layout, the same articles only on a slightly different topic, the same photo shoots only with a new model. Although at first it seemed great to drool over the new high fashions and look at all the pretty models I soon realised that I couldn't afford any of the fashions that were reviewed and shown off and I didn't look like any of the models so I had to look for another magazine to fall in love with. That's when I found i.D. It opened my eyes to a whole new world and it gave me all the information I needed at that time in my life. What music was hot, what films were not and who was doing what in the fashion and art world. After coming across i.D I found many other magazines of the same genre; Dazed and Confused, Flux, POP, Plastique, and Wonderland. whilst becoming a avid reader of i.D I also bought these other magazines now and again. As my magazine collection grew taller I loved it more and more. For every art project I would go through every one and find imagery and inspiration.
When I moved to Dundee last year for my first year of Uni I made sure that none of my magazines were let behind even though my dad protested that there was not enough room. They looked great in my room but I didn't pay as much attention to them as in the past. I continued to add to my collection with the additions of two new great finds; Cooler and Vice.
The end of first year meant trekking back home with all my belonging sand once again all my magazines came home. After sitting patiently for the summer they were to return again once more to Dundee but this time to my new flat. Once again they look great in my room but they are very much neglected. Not that I wouldn't like to look through them all I just don't have the time and although I hate to admit it I'm kind of bored of them as I've ripped out all the good stuff for use for other things.
Whenever a new i.D or Dazed and Confused hits the shelves I still head straight to them in the shops and have a flick through. However I feel quite disappointed because just like my realization that there was the same thing in Elle magazine every month this has became the same case with my other favourite magazines.
I no longer get excited to see the fashion shoots because I've seen them all before and it may be a new band there writing about but because it's written in the same format they just sound the same.
I find it really sad that I've lost my love for magazines because they truly were my inspiration in life. They even inspired me to do Graphic Design. So now I'm here studying Graphic Design and wanting to go in to the magazine industry, but how can I go in to an industry that I've fell out of love with?
Well..... I refuse to loose hope, there must be more amazing magazines sitting on shelves out there that I have not came across yet. I am going to go out and hunt them down, I am going to become a magazine critic until I have analyzed magazines so much that I know what's good, what's bad, what's ugly and what's beautiful. If I want to be in the magazine industry then I need to know it inside out from a readers/ buyers perspective before I enter it.
That is it! I have decided that No, I am not bored of magazines! I am going to go on a magazine mission to find the best so that I can then make the best so that I can inspire other people with pages of magical imagery and writing just as I was inspired by my loved magazines of the past!

Christmas is too commercialised!

Our lecture on friday about about "why we buy things" made me realize that I'm actually quite a scrooge when it comes to Christmas. I don't really enjoy buying presents for people because it stresses me out figuring out what to get within my budget and as much as I love feeling the presents under the tree and ripping them open on the 25th I'm usually disappointed with the outcome as my family don't have a clue what I like or need no matter how many pointers I give them. I may seem ungrateful but as I'm all about reducing waste I don't want useless presents that I'm going to keep for a few months and then get rid of in one way or another. I read an article by Crystal Hawkins called "Christmas is too commercialized" and she makes an extremely good suggestion; "If you absolutely insist on receiving gifts for Christmas, the perfect solution would be, instead of buying presents for other people, only buy them for yourself. Wrap them if you wish, though it is not absolutely necessary. This way everyone gets what they want and no one will have to guess anymore. Guessing takes the fun out of Christmas and adds pressure. If you stop feeding into the commercialization of this one day each year, you will rollick in a much more enjoyable December." I know a lot of people would disagree and say that Christmas is all about giving but I think it's definitely became more about getting what you want. Jesus didn't ask what he wanted when he got his gifts but now it's all about kids telling there parents, grandparents and aunties what they want and then all these people trying there hardest to get these things for them. Last year everyone wanted a Wii so parents would do anything to get on for there kids. Since Christmas is about getting what you want then you should go out there and get it yourself then your not going to have any problems. It could just be seen as the time of year when you treat yourself and then on Christmas day you can tell everyone what you got for yourself and why you deserve it and why it's so great. this way you will be enjoying your new things and therefore be in a happy mood whilst surrounded by family instead of sitting there disappointed and thinking about how skint you are.
Crystal Hawkins sums Christmas up pretty well in her article saying; Christmas is a time for dysfunctional families to unite, exchange meaningless gifts and enjoy a delicious dinner around a table that is scarred from years of assorted holiday celebrations that force families to congregate. However sad and depressing this may be it is quite true in most families. My granny organizes Christmas lunch and phones all the family to say when they should be there and we all turn up on Christmas day and see each other and talk to each other for the first time in ages. It would be nicer if there were phone calls between all family members to arrange things and talk to each other instead of leaving it down to dear old granny.
Just like everything in life there needs to be a lot of changes made. We keep on living our lives and doing the necessary things each year and everything keeps on getting more and more commercialized, where as what we need to do is stop and think about things and think about how we can change things for the better. We do this for other things in are life such as how we're doing at university or in our jobs but we don't actually think about how we're doing at celebrating Christmas, are we doing it right? If we stopped and re-planned and didn't care about what "we should be doing at Christmas" and thought about how it could suit each of our families then I think everyone would enjoy it more instead of dreading spending hundreds of pounds and making awkward chat with family members.

Monday, 16 November 2009


In Assignment 2 I focused on looking at Chapter 4 of the Tippin Point, in particular the part about the Broken Window Theory and the removal of graffiti from subway trains in New York, 1984-1990. I though about how graffiti removal from trains could be easier, cheaper and more environmentally friendly. I came up with the idea of removable graffiti where vinyl stickers are pt on the side of trains so that the graffiti can be peeled off and put up in other more welcoming environments. Assignment 3 asks you to look in to the ideas and problems that appear with your idea from Assignment 2 in more detail by using the Library and the Library Cross Search. After doing a quick mind map I used cross search to find out about all issues surrounding graffiti and the removal of graffiti. I also checked out the Library to find out further more resources connected with my idea. Below is a bibliography of the useful resources I found.

Kees Keizer, Siegwart Lindenberg, Linda Steg, (2008) 'The Spreading of Disorder', Science Express Vol. 322, No.5908, 2008
This magazine article is the first of reports on what constitutes disorder. The article is mainly about a study that they carried out to find answers to this unanswered question. In the study they generated a hypotheses about the spread of disorder and tested them in 6 field experiments. they look at the Broken Window theory in detail and create insightful conclusions from their experiments.

Eleanor Young, (2001) 'Paint Fight', RIBA journal, 2001 Sept, v.108, n.9, p.73,75
The main focus of this article is design strategies to deter graffiti. However it looks at it from an architects point of view and in relation to architects which is interesting because they tackle it from a different angle and look at graffiti in a different light opposed to local government and policing schemes. They feel that the answer to graffiti is to consider it at the start of the design process compared to worrying about it when it's too late.

Lindsey Othen-Price, (2006) 'Making Their Mark: A Psychodynamic View of Adolescent Graffiti Writing', Psychodynamic Practice, vol. 12, no. 1, pp. 5-17, Feb 2006
This paper tries to find an understanding behind the behaviour of adolescent graffiti artists and the way in which adolescents make public statements illegaly. The author feels that it is a predominatley male activity and looks in to the reasoning behind this and the links between puberty, emotions, difficulties and the need to do graffiti. The author also tackles the differences between individual and gang writing. This is a good source as in order to prevent graffiti you have to know why people do it.

Penelope J. Craw, Luis Lelend, Michelle Bussell, Simon Munday, Karen Walsh, (2006) 'The Mural As Graffiti Deterrence', Environment & Behavior, vol. 38, no. 3, pp. 422-434, May 2006
This study investigates whether the use of colourful murals could significantly reduce graffiti attacks in areas prone to graffiti. They tested this by painting a colourful mural on a wall section covered in graffiti and compared this to another wall close by that they cleaned some of the graffiti off of. As predicted the section of wall that did not have the mural on was subject to significantly higher levels of graffiti during the test process.

M. Halsey, (2002) The meanings of graffiti and municipal administration, AUSTRALIAN AND NEW ZEALAND JOURNAL OF CRIMINOLOGY 35 (2): 165-186 AUG 2002
This article explores sociocultural aspects of graffiti, and looks at municipal administrative responses to its occurrence. The article looks at how it is hard to classify graffiti as crime or art as there are so many different types and styles. There are interviews with council representitives and graffiti artists to try and gain a better understanding of good and bad graffiti. The article suggests that it is possible for regulatory bodies to engage with and promote graffiti culture.

The Design Council, (1979) 'Designing Against Vandalism'
This book is a really good source becasue it lets me look at how the removal of graffiti has been tackled in the past and how communities and buildings are designed to prevent it. It looks at how it can be tackled in different areas such as council estates and in schools. It has good images, case studies and really tackles the subject well and in detail.

Technical Conservation, Research and Education Division, (1999) 'The Treatment of Graffiti on Historic Surfaces', No 18
Although the title of this book suggests that it only tackles the subject of removing graffiti from old buildings, in actual fact it tackles many issues surrounding graffiti. It looks at the public perception of graffiti, the psychology of the graffitist, the cultural value of graffiti, community involvement, types of graffiti and types of removal methods. It basically tackles all the important issues that I need to touch on to understand how, why, and what about graffiti and really helps in al aspects.

Friday, 13 November 2009



As I've mentioned before on my blog this websites brilliant as it provides an ever lasting source of inspiration. It's updated daily with the most up to date graphic design and art. By clicking on a piece that you like your given ideas of other stuff you might like which helps you find work that you would never have thought to search for. You can then direct yourself to the artist/ designers website and find out more.
This websites great for the newest innovations in packing design. It looks at studio based work and student work so you can get inspirations from many areas.
Great for inspiration and help on website design. Focuses on a Graphic Design and Illustrative approach. Updated regularly so you can keep track of the new website styles that are out there.
A sustainable design agency. Really good for seeing how Graphic Designers can approach a project sustain-ably and be successful in todays business.
Another great website that provides lots of design inspiration. A lot of unique and different ideas. and because you can look at the magazines (both based on graphic design) without having to buy them.


Covers all areas of design so that you can open your eyes to other fields of design instead of being stuck in your own.
Let's you find out what's happening in the world around you quickly without having to flick through the newspaper. Easier to navigate to the things you want to read.
Keeps you up to date with the latest campaigns that are going on and has great blogs that people have written about interesting subjects to do with the capitalist worlds advertising culture, peace and war.
Voices what is happening with the state of the environment all over the world and what actions are being taken to protect it.
The Google of the art world. Everything is split in to sections so you can find and search for things easily. massive collection of artwork.

Monday, 2 November 2009

Poster for Design Studies

After brainstorming with my study group and having a discussion about the issues that came up in the brainstorm I decided to look at chapter 4 of The Tipping Point in more detail (The Power of Context) in particular the part about the clean up of Graffiti in the subway of New York in the mid 80's. In the brain storm it became clear that a lot of people linked vandalism, dirtyness, crime and violence to graffiti just as they portray it as in the book. I wanted to think of a way that would make graffiti more accepted in to society by the masses in particular graffiti on trains as is mentioned in the chapter. I came up with the idea of 'removable graffiti,' where a vinyl sticker is placed on to the side of trains that when sprayed on can be removed. The vinyl sticker is printed with the same colour, design as the train so artists don't realise and continue spraying as usual. The stickers can be put on the trains when stationary or at night and taken off through the day to appear clean and un-vandalised when on journeys. However I feel that it would be terrible to just get rid of the graffiti as it is an art form and some of it is absolutely amazing so I came up with some ideas for the graffiti to be displayed in more welcome environments. The poster describes how George Kelling tackles graffiti in the book, my new idea and how the graffiti could be put to good use.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

our brainstorming sheets

Mind Showering

For assignment two our group got together and did a brainstorm or mind shower! We had one session of fifteen minutes to focus on The Law of the Few and then we had a half an hour session where we looked at The Stickiness Factor and The Power of Context. It was good to do them at separate times so that our brains didn't get too tired and we could keep the fresh ideas flowing. I've never really used this technique before but I found it really helpful to refresh my memory of the main points of the book and to grow on these ideas. Working as a team meant that there was a whole range of ideas that helped me to then build on these and keep it going. It was also great working as a team because this is how it is done a lot in the graphic design practice and helped me to understand how important it is for the creative process to take place.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Reading Week

During our reading week last week I took a small trip to Newcastle. Whilst there I visited the Baltic Art Gallery which all in all I was ver impressed with. The building itself is very impressive as it used to be an old flour mill, providing it with many levels and plenty of space, the perfect setting for art work. There were three main exhibitions on including a small one from legendary fashion designer Malcolm McLaren.
Photographer Martin Parr took over two levels with his exhibition named Parrworld. The photographs on the first floor were extremely insightful and gave inspiration from every day occurances. They were mainly of people at a horse racing ground, ladies with there fancy outfits on and men with there suits however the way Parr had captured them and the composition of the photos was a lot more interesting than it first sounds. My favourite of this collection was a photo of someones carpet with people knees and glasses of wine sitting on it. As this is always what you would see at one of our house gatherings on the floor but you would never think of taking a photo of such a mundane thing, but it really worked at showing the atmosphere, time and place. Moving up to Parrs next level you can view a range of objects, photographs and books from Parrs own personal collection which is very interesting. Whilst looking round this I felt connected to him as an artist as I hoard many objects and books that may seem pointless, but they looked brilliant as an exhibition. There were glass boxes filed with watches and clocks that all had either Borack Obamas, Sudan Hussein or Osama Bin Ladens face in them. I found it comical but at the same time it had meaning, like time was important to when these important figures were going to act.
Korean artist Kim Sooja took over another of the levels with her first solo artist. The large room had 8 large screens on the walls, 4 on each side where all you could see was busy streets with people walking towards the camera. However all the streets were in very different parts of the world such as Mexico City, Nambia and Egypt. It was mesmerising to watch as many different cultures and people walked towards you, giving an insight of what the place, people and culture of that place are like. I could have watched it all day.
Definatley worth a visit.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009


I ffffound this great website the other day just when I was loosing faith in the internet, just when I thought there was no inspiration left out there for me and then there it was, just about everything I've ever wanted in a website! is a like flickr in a sense as artists and designers upload photography and work. But it's so much easier to navigate your way through and it always provides you with something that you weren't expecting.
Also not just anyone can upload their work, it's invitation only which makes it all the more specail.
It has everything from pictures of exhibitions, to fashion photoshoots, to magazine layouts.
Tons of inspiration at the click of your mouse.

365 days of trash

One mans attempt to throw away nothing for a year!

Dave Chameides is the namesake for
Sustainable Dave, a title he was given after deciding to keep all of his rubbish in his basement for a year. He’s been teaching a course he created, Chasing Sustainability, to school kids for the past three years and is going to be turning it into a documentary feature in the coming year.
If something was waste that Dave generated he made it his goal to deal with it. This entailed him figuring out what it was made from, what would happen to it if it were “thrown away” and what he was going to do with it. Any waste that he generated that could be recycled, he also kept because even though recycling is better than throwing away it still takes energy and creates waste. After one year, Dave had stashed about 30 pounds of trash not including recyclables in his basement. He was able to limit his waste for a whole year to roughly the amount the average American produces in six days. The average American disposes of five pounds of rubbish daily, adding up to 1,700 pounds of rubbish annually but Dave’s rubbish dump was so small he was able to fit it away in only a 10 square feet in his basement.

(lots of great info and tips)

After reading the brave and courageous story of Sustainable Dave and his mission to keep all his waste in his basement for a year I have found it hard myself to chuck things away. It has made me realise that nothing is really rubbish, it has made me ask the question; "what is rubbish?" and I have came to the conclusion that rubbish is just the stuff in life that we are done with and choose to ignore.

Many people think that once you put rubbish in the bin then viola its gone, off the planet, disappeared, nothing more to be dealt with...but obviously they’re wrong. It has to be collected, transported to landfills or hopefully recycling centres. At the landfill it has to be buried and at the recycling plant it has all to be split and dealt with in different ways and then transported to factories to be reused. So all that transportation is causing pollution for a start! I just find the amount of things that people dispose of each day absolutely diabolical. There are a lot of people who do recycle as much as possible but there's still more that don't give a thought in the world to where there McDonalds box goes, where the plastic wrapper on there new catalogue goes, where that catalogue goes, where an old stereo ends up!!

Definitely in most cities in the UK people are provided with numerous different bins for cardboard, glass, garden waste and normal rubbish which is very positive and smaller towns are slowly getting these services also. However there are still a lot of people that are down right lazy. They were brought up chucking there unwanted things in to the same bin and they don't have the care to change for the better. This is just in the UK but it is hard to tell the situation in other countries. I never hear about all the recycling going on in China or Greece; are foreign countries better or worse when it comes to recycling?
When in 6th year I went on a study trip to Norway
and stayed with a host family who were definitely more waste conscious than many I know. In the kitchen there bin had about 5 different compartments for different materials so that they could all be disposed of properly or recycled. This is excellent as its not just having that option on your doorstep but actually in your house so you cant forget!
The reason I have such a problem throwing things away is because I see the potential in everything to make something new, to make it in to something else. My friend said the other day Iv got lots of milk bottle tops if you want and I said yeah I'll have them even though I didn’t know what I’d do with them but I knew that I would think of something. My friends have realised that I’m big on recycling and are always offering me rubbish that they know I will appreciate.

I would usually put quite a few things in the bin on a day to day basis because although I would like to I cant keep everything as i don’t have the space or the time as I don't know when I will have time to make all these collected things in to new things.
What I need is the confidence to tell people that they need a bin for this and that and why and make sure they go through with it. It wouldn't be hard for me to say to my boss at the pub I work at that they should have a separate bin for cans but I can just see the screwed up expression now and hear the why? I just find it really hard to chuck things out because all these things shouldn't just be ignored after they've been used for all of three days to package a salad or a toy.

How can we just chuck things away?


Above are my two mind maps for Malcolm Gladwell's book, The Tipping Point. I really enjoyed the book, it had a whole variety of examples of life and people which made it easy to believe the points he was making and the information he was putting across. The life examples Gladwell uses are all completely different which kept me interested and learning all sorts of new things that I didn't expect to be learning. The book is not about design but all the points that are made and now knowing how epidemics are started makes it is easy to transfer this new knowledge in to the area of design.

Friday, 2 October 2009


I have had so many inspiring experiences this week:
-watching Helvetica at the DCA {I didn't fall in love with helvetica though!}
-the Graphics RGB party
-viewing the current exhibition at the DCA
-finding loads of great graphic design sites on Delicious

to be wrote about at a later date :D


I found Proffesor Mike Press' lecture today ruudy great! The lectures title; DESIGN in the age of knowledge, experience, and terror seemed rather boring, but I was happily shocked at how much interesting information, how many inspiring words and the amount of energy that came from one mans mouth. There was barely a moment where I wasn't laughing. There was no time to be bored as I sat and listened eager to hear the next peice of information that was to be said. The amount that was squeezed in to two hours was frankly amazing and really great! It was easy to tell that Mike Press was really passionate and really believed in what he was telling us which give me so much faith in design. I feel really passionate about recycling and working towards a more sustainable world but no one believes that we can turn the world around and save it, apparantly "it's too late!" I can think of millions of great plans and ideas to make things better but I know that it would have to be on a big scale to make any big changes and Id really like to get these plans in to action but it is such a struggle to get people to believe in changing their ways. However after hearing what Jusia Wedgewood did in his time, it made me believe that anything can be done and that YES we should THINK BIG! I want to change the world in a big way with my design and there is no reason why I can't! I learned three very important things today; we don't design things or products, we design the experience that those things give to people, designers shouldn't be afraid to THINK BIG, and the meaning of life haha!Apparantly what we need to do is reinvent our Sigmoid curve at point A, before it gets to point B. This is such good advice and so inspiring! It makes me want to create change all the time and keep my curve going up for as long as possible! CREATE YOUR OWN CHANGE! We need to break out the box of normality... don't think inside the box, think on top of the circle!!
I also think that Design Studies is really good because I'm learning more about the world and the whole world of design instead of just graphics and it makes me happy to think that all my fellow lecture goers are getting to hear all of these inspiring words hopefully injecting some passion in to their bones if its not already there!
Sorry I learned 4 imprtant things today; 4th- ALWAYS check the air flow because if there isn't any air then your pretty buggard!

Thursday, 24 September 2009

My first blog

This is my very first blog ever.. in the world! So lucky you if you are reading it. I'd just like to announce that last night there was a copy of National Geographic in my kitchen, I am still unsure which one of my flat mates purchased this lovely informative magazine, but anyways it was there. So as I usually do when I see a magazine I picked it up and had a small look, but this small look made me want to have a larger look as it was full of pretty awesome facts about the world. The issue is called "The State of the World, 2010" and looks at over population and sustainability. This was sort of fate but also very annoying as I have just finished a summer project for Graphic Design where I had to compile a sustainable sketchbook, and everything that I spent weeks finding out was all there in National Geographic. I found it all very interesting because they had facts that I hadn't come across.. but if I had seen this magazine at the start of the summer my summer project would have been a whole lot easier. Not that I like cheating but it is hard to come across straight forward information and facts when there is so many opposing articles out there on the internet. I advise that people buy or have a look at this months National Geographic because we could all do with learning a bit about what we're doing to the world because it really isn't good things. And I must admit I will now make it a habit to look at National Geographic every issue to find out more about the world out there!