Week #11–7521QCA Visual Communication

Right off the bat, the first thing we did for this week’s class was an instructor feedback survey. I’ve always liked the idea of these surveys. I used to do a lot of them during my Bachelors degree at Bond University. The anonymity allows for honest feedback. However, from time to time it can be difficult to answer some questions since there is little context to support them. Luckily, this survey had a comment section.

I had already arrived to class early and was forced to set up in the corner of the room, away from everyone, in order to charge my laptop. I would’ve charged from one of the hanging power ports but I still would have had to sit a ways away and with an annoying cord hanging around me.

After finishing the survey, we all set to working on our projects once again. Rae went around the room to see our progress and give us more feedback where necessary.

Since the end of last week and during that class, I had been testing the ways I could use the textures I noted in the previous class.

I specifically used a handful of textures from the internet in the chicken and dark closet vector graphics.

Rae approved of this use of raster images in my zine. All that was left to do was get the photographs of each texture. I tried to make compromises for each texture as opposed to actually finding perfectly matching textures (i.e. a concrete texture instead of a bone texture for the broken arm vector graphic). This would make it easier to collect them.

Assessment Progress & Completion

As of the end of this week, I have completed my Zine. Thankfully, it turned out really good. Admittedly, my opinion of it might be slightly inflated due to the fact that I might’ve been expecting worse from Officeworks dramas.

Printing is not my favourite part of this process…

I have to say though, the process of getting from the beginning of this week to the end was a long one.

Final Phobia: Agoraphobia

One of the final additions I needed to make to the zine was the addition of the last phobia. Agoraphobia is the fear of open spaces and crowds. It’s a bit harder for me to wrap my head around this phobia since it seems somewhat counter intuitive. I imagine that the fear of crowds is similar to claustrophobia (fear of tight/enclosed spaces) but that seems like the opposite of fearing open-spaces. I suspect the fear is nested in embarrassment. Somewhat similar to glossophobia (fear of public speaking). It would explain the fear of crowds but not the fear of open spaces, which you’d expect to be devoid people since it can’t be an open space with people filling it. I’m more partial to the embarrassment based interpretation since I’d read that while people with agoraphobia fear crowds and open spaces, they are especially afraid of open space when they are filled with people.

Couple of fun little facts about this part of the zine. Firstly, the image this was based on was a photo from a family vacation in paris. It’s actually one of the photos taken in the room where the Mona Lisa was. It features two of my family members that were there at the time.

Funnily enough, I actually tried to use one of the photos I took there in assessment one for the “Tells a Story” photography task. I guess you could call that a bonus fun fact!

The second fun little tidbit involves the colour choice. I was holding off on using the colour blue because I already had a phobia I wanted to use it for. Unfortunately, it wasn’t agoraphobia.

It was Aquaphobia.

You see, one of the reasons I chose to pursue a zine about phobias was because I noticed that the zine that inspired me had a mistake in it.

This zine was also about phobias and had black pages. However, unlike mine, it didn’t give any information aside from the definition of the fear. It was almost entirely graphic based.

This zine showcased phobias that were both common and uncommon. One of these was hydrophobia (the fear of water/drowning).

After doing a bit of research I found that the actual name of the phobia was aquaphobia. Hydrophobia is used to describe a symptom of rabies.

I wanted to include aquaphobia in my zine so that it would be a more factually correct than my inspiration zine. Unfortunately, there were half a dozen more phobias alphabetically between agoraphobia and aquaphobia.

Raster Image Textures

Final Zine Pages

These all turned out pretty good. The process for making this change actually required me to use photoshop again. Thankfully I had created save files from when I had to convert each digital sketch into vector graphics.

Raster Texture Process

I used the separate black shapes as masks for the textures and then applied the Multiply blend mode to the layer so that the color of the vector graphic could be seen through each texture. I then set the saturation of each texture to zero so that their own colours would not blend with the colours of the vector graphics. A few of them also needed to have their brightness increased since their darker tones were hindering the vibrance of the colours behind them.

Cover & Back

This was one of the final additions I made to the zine. Originally, the cover was very bland and the back was non-existent.

Old Cover (left) | New Cover (mid) | New Back (right)

The new cover wasn’t all that different from the old one. It just had a little more colour. It matched the booked thematically. I also decided to sign the zine with my logo on the back.

However, while doing some test printing on my own printer, I came up with a far better idea for the cover.

I couldn’t help but laugh to myself at the time. It is so very typical of me to come up with an idea at the last minute and then struggle to implement it.

The new idea was to make the cover and back more of a file folder. This would be more in line with the medical theme. It would also add a nice contrast between the cover and the pages (white cover, black pages).

Outer side of cover spread (left) | Inner side of cover spread (right)
Zine Home Test Print

After my previous experience with Officeworks, I decided to make a complete test print in order to show them what I wanted. It was only after making it myself that I realised that it would be more difficult to print than I thought.

I then spent a whole day in Officeworks trying to properly print the zine. There were issues with page order and orientation, page size and document format. Quite a bit of time was spent trying to properly print the zine. There were a number of test prints that didn’t pan out.

Officeworks Test Prints

There were also issues with how the printer printed the booklet. Turns out that their printer can also make the booklet at the same time. Unfortunately, that presented a few problems. Firstly, it meant that the white border around the papers also went down the middle of the booklet. Secondly, since it was already binded in the printer, a larger piece of paper (the file cover) couldn’t be added to it.

Fortunately, the white border issue resolved itself. One of thee employees, Sally, miraculously printed the booklet with no border down the center. However, I had to give up on the file cover idea. Including it would’ve required me to get all the pages printed, cut the covers by hand, and have them stapled by hand. So instead I revised the file cover to just be one of the printed pages. It was still white but it was the same size as the other pages and had no tab.

So after a couple more test prints (thanks to some off center elements), I reached the final design and had ten copies printed.

Final Zine Pages

Aspiring graphic designer and 3D modeller. Graduate of Bond University. Avid Disney fan.