Google Tag Manager Award

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IrishGuy Design Studio Graphic Design for Google Tag Management

Google Tag Manager is a faster performing process for streamlining tag deployment.
SEO Saves Combine reporting processes into one interface.Google understands that running customer reports is important. Google also understands why we are running all of these user reports. It’s our job because we can improve the user experience with informative data. The downside, the embedded tags are slowly the website performance times. Google Tags offers a solution by combining all the requests into one interface. Google Tags promises that users can trigger Tags with events, reducing the processing to only when the user makes a request.

  • Google Analytics.
  • Google AdWords.
  • 3rd Party.

The Outcome of Using Google Tag Manager

The first step to a successful Google Tag project is to set your plan.
For each business, the plan will be different. Do your research to define what your business goals are. And, how Google Tags can help define when you have reached that goal?

  • Develop a measurement plan.
  • Develop a tag management strategy.
  • Deploy tags.
  • Deploy triggers.
    • How to set up variables.
    • How to reuse variables across the website.
    • How to use the Data layer.
    • How to use variables.
    • How to use events.
    • Pass information from your website to marketing and analysis tools.
    • Set up Advertising.
    • Set up Remarketing tags.

Measurement Plan for your business.

  1. Business objective.
  2. Business tactics.
  3. Which metrics and dimensions will be used for measurement and analysis.
  4. ID key performance indicators and segments.

Implement Google Tags

Business Objective

  • GOAL: Additional revenue from online sales.
  • STRATEGY: Provide a website where customers can research, connect with other user and buy our product.

Google Award Asheville NC Google Tag Manager

Logo Designs

posted in: Logo Design | 0

Logo Designs by Gary Crossey of IrishGuy Design Studio (Asheville NC)

Logo Design Samples

Creating a logo for a business is a special experience for the designer. Especially, with a start-up firm. Often the questions we ask a new business owner. Generate conversations that the business owner has not had before.

Answers to design questions often reflect the function and practice of business.

The logo design process leads to the visual identity.

WEBSITE TRENDS Smartphone Decline

Design responsive content for smartphones

Yes, the SmartPhone market is slowing down.

2017 Internet Trends report concluded that the increase for smartphones is on the decline.

  • 2017 = 3% grew of shipped smartphones. 
  • 2016 = 10% increase of shipped smartphones. 
Like most tech products the decrease of sales of smartphones is expected. However, smartphone reduction was not projected to happen so quickly. The smartphone decline is contrary to all other internet trends.

Global Internet User = 10% increase. 

Global Internet User has a steady history of increasing usage by an average of 10% (since 1995).

What does the smartphone decline mean?

The drop in demand for the smartphone may indicate that the customer base is saturated. And, that everyone who is going to buy a smartphone, has done so.

How is the desktop/laptop market impacted?

In the past decade, the desktop/laptop usage growth has barely changed. Desktop/laptop usage has remained constant. Indicate that smartphone users are not adapting to new devices. But, rather they are adding the device to their arsenal of tech tools.
Smartphone users have not slowed day. 
The demand for new smartphones may be on the decline. But the requirements that users are placing on their devices is on the increase.

Adults spend on average six hours per day on the internet. 

  • 2011 = 1 hour of usage on mobile devices. 
  • 2017 = 3 hours of usage on mobile devices. 
In recent years, the increase for time devoted to hand-held devices has increased by 2 hours per day. The demand for desktop/laptop access has not declined.
Usage reports suggest that the average user used to spend up to 3 hours a day on the internet. Compared to now spending up to 6 hours a day on the web. With the increase of time on the internet is via their handheld devices. I am sure binge-watching Orange is the New Black (and other Netflix shows) has an enormous impact on handheld device usage.

GRAPHIC DESIGN Icon Design

Tool Icon Design

Icon Design by Gary Crossey

Graphic Design Icon Design by IrishGuy Design Studio Asheville

Icons remain a hot design trend for 2017.
The Flat Design is still a reliable option.

SVG Icons

SVG  (Scale Vector Graphic) Flat Design Tool Icons.
The SVG format provides smooth curved edges.

Why use Icon for Website Design?

Icon Design Graphic Design is about Visual Communication. When people arrive at your site, they quickly scan your web page – looking for something of interest. The modern web page icon provides a visual break for your site visitor.

The Icon is a psychological paragraph. Paired with strong typesetting. The icon can visual help your site visitor connect with your content.

 

Check out our other Icon Designs

Click to view our Icon Design Collection.

 

Why is SEO important?

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The most important aspect of SEO is it still works. Moreover, SEO is going to keep working.

Sure the rules of SEO are always changing. However, for websites with experience and education to improve their site’s ranking can adapt quickly. The higher ranking site benefits from increased visibility, traffic, and conversation rates. Do not get out maneuver by your competitors by ignoring how your business ranks.

Timeline of SEO Tactics

Using old SEO tactics can seriously harm your SEO ranking. Keep current with SEO rules by making your content user-friendly, easy to navigate, fast loading, and easy to scan.

  • 1990 – Meta Keyword Tags and Keyword Stuffing.
  • 2004 – Buying Links, Link Farms, and Link Bombing.
  • 2011 – Social Media Marketing.
  • 2014 – Media Rich Content.
  • 2015 – Responsive Design.
  • 2016 – Unique content and images.

Search Engine Essentials

Having a blog, online store, or website rank well can significantly increase your business.

  • People trust Search Engine Results.
  • People typically select from the top 5 search suggestions.
  • Get ahead of your competition with a strong SEO framework.
  • Improve your user experience.
  • Provide quality content.
  • 80-90% customer read product/service reviews before purchasing.
  • Not building an active content profile over months/years will potentially damage your business.

For more SEO Information

Read my SEO blogs.

Google Ecommerce Analytics Certification

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What Ecommerce Reports can Google Analytics provide?

The new Google Ecommerce Analytics reports remove the mystery of the online shopping experience.

  1. Product List Performance Report – which online tools are working.
  2. Product Performance Report – which products are viewed, added to the shopping cart, and which products are purchased.
  3. Shopping Behaviour Report – displays how customers progress through your shopping cart.
  4. Checkout Behaviour Analysis Report – learn where you are losing customers during the checkout process.

Google Ecommerce Analytics - From Data to Decisions

Advanced Google Analytics Academy Certification

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Advanced Google Analytics

Advanced Google Analytics Certification

I am thankful to renew my Advanced Google Analytics Certification every year. Keeping current with online trends begins (and typically ends) with Google. Google provides an in-depth certification program that challenges to adapt my SEO methods.

Every year I complete the advanced Google Analytics Certification program with three core values.

  1. I learn something new.
  2. I gain a deeper understanding.
  3. I have new opportunities for my clients.

2017 is a superb time for Google Ad Campaign

Google Analytics new measurement plans can make your Google Ads more effective. With new tracking codes that can connect you with returning customers. Or, reach out to customers on other networks.

Create Meaningful Google Ads Campaigns

  • Text Ads on Search Engine results.
  • Banner Ads on other websites.
  • Social Media Campaign.
  • Email Campaign.
  • Or, a mix of the above.

I can establish your core keywords to begin your Google Ad Campaign. Know which keywords are worth pursuing before running your Google Ads.

I find better keywords that generate more solid leads.

What is the best process for successful Conversion Rates?

The first step to a successful ad campaign is to set a business goal. Each ad campaign should have a simple action and outcome. For each website visitor, the goal may be different. For the same site visitor, the goal may change each time they visit the store.

I begin with the basic Google Ad formula.

Business Goal = Action = Conversion

Google Ad Dynamic Remarketing

Have us create your Google Ad Dynamic Remarketing Campaign to ensure your ad populates with the people who are interested in your brand, product, or service.

With Google Ads Dynamic Remarketing Tracking Code added to your website you can target the next visitors. So you can re-connect with people based on what they showed an interest in before.

  • The visitor that left before completing their purchase.
  • People who viewed your homepage.
  • Individuals who browsed your product pages.
  • A web visitor who reviewed a product.
  • A person who used a search result to access your website.
  • A previous customer.
Learn More about our Google Analytics Services

Google Analytics Academy

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Google Analytics for Beginners

Google Analytics Certification

Every year I renew my Google Analytics Certification because it is important to me to stay current. The internet landscape is always changing. Web trends come and go. Often, without anyone else noticing. But, I notice.

The Google Analytics That I See

There is an art to Google Analytics and a digital artist – I understand how to work with numbers to create art. I also know how to see patterns in numbers, to capture trends before they burn out. Every year I return to the Google Academy eager to refine and define my SEO, Google Analytics, and Google Ad talents.

Thre are three things that happen with every Google Academy course without fail:

  • I always learn something new.
  • I always complete the course with a deeper understanding of what is important to Google.
  • I always leave with new options for my clients.
Learn More about our Google Analytics Services

WEBSITE DESIGN Asheville Massage

Asheville Website Design Banner

URL: Relax & Rejuvenate

Asheville Website Design Sample by IRISHGUY Design Studio
Click to Enlarge

Relax & Rejuvenate arrived with an out-of-date WordPress site. The theme was too old to update. And the WordPress installation had long expired (and failed all attempts to upgrade). We also streamlined the Hosting and Domain management. Transferring our clients to a Fast Forward Hosting account is essential to the website performance and security.

SEO Services / Design

Getting to know your customer’s customers is the most important aspect of creating a website.

  • Who is the end user?
  • Are they local?
  • Are they repeat customers?
  • What is their online experience?

Just a few of the questions. What we quickly discovered.

  • Local Repeat Customers had no need for the website.
  • Tourists relied on the site.
  • Google Maps had multiple lists.

Website Design Consideration

WordPress is a suitable platform for most everyone. With a carefully configured Theme. And optimized content.

Being user-friendly is the most important consideration for all websites.

For this site, we had reported that most all of the traffic and conversions are from people traveling. We knew it was important to provide a website that will load onto mobile devices quickly.

Providing the end user with a strong call to action – CALL US TO BOOK. Is the most important function. With Directions being the second action.

Website Booking System

Adding a booking system to your website is a HUGE deal. For the end-user, your customer. Visitors can book their appointment online at any time and from anywhere. For the website, we kept the booking system very simple. Most customers when asked said they liked the ability to pay online so that they could focus on their spa experience.

Google My Business & Google Maps

Google My Business Asheville SpaThere is no getting away from Google My Business. Google Map had populated the Asheville business in four different locations. At one point the only correct location was published as “Permanently closed.” We claimed all of the lose Google My Business listings. Tracked down all the different variations of the address that were online.

With the information on Google corrected. Fewer customers reported having difficulties locating the spa.

 

PHOTOGRAPHY Rule of Thirds

Photographer Gary Crossey52 Week Photo Challenge

WEEK ONE ASSIGNMENT

Story: Rule of Thirds

ASSIGNMENT: The rule of thirds is the first compositional rule most photographers learn, but most don’t know why they learn it. The rule of thirds is fantastic for telling a story. Tell a story using the rule of thirds.

PHOTO: The beginning of the year has begun with thick mountain fogs. Most of the animals are staying close to the house. The Rooster got my attention – then his buddies showed up.

 

PHOTOGRAPHY Artistic: Candy

Inspiration this week is candy. Since this is the advanced challenge… you can’t
actually use candy in the scene.

Photography Artist Candy Asheville

Week six photography challenge “Artistic Candy.”

I love to make handmade candy. And, have quite a collection of candy/cookie making baking tools. Unlike, other kitchen tools, the candy tools are unique. Each mold or cutter has a story. Or a special event that they play a role.

Photography by Asheville IrishGuy.

#dogwood52 #garycrossey2017 #dogwoodweek6

BANNER 5 Reasons

Graphic Design by IRISHGUY Design Studio (Asheville NC)

BLOG: 5 Reasons to See Your Dentist

Every good blog needs a strong graphic. Asheville Dental Care like a crisp, clean typeface. Eating apples are a key element of the blog. At the store, I bought the best-looking apples they had.

In the photo studio

Once in my photo studio, it is lights, camera, action. The studio is not a place that I spend time figuring stuff out. I arrive at the photo studio with a task to do, a concept devloped, and outcomes expected. In this case, the subject is an Apple. But what an apple. It took six takes to get the right bite incision into the Apple. I did use the apples to make a pie (I like pie).

Photoshop Edits

What I did not say. I bought red apples, not green. The photography I did was a red apple. With Photoshop I adjusted the color values of the Apple to make it appear green (to match the Asheville Dental Care brand).

 

Comic Strip

Who doesn’t enjoy creating fun comic strip illustrations? 

Asheville Dental Care always has fresh ideas, and are interested in connecting with their patients. As their graphic designer and website developer, I get to immerse myself into their website content. And what is so fascinating, my idea of modern dentistry was completely off. Believe it, dentistry has evolved, and in many cases is now pain-free.

BLOG: ashevilledentalcare.com/i-brush-floss.

Logo Design Asheville Dental Care

Asheville Illustration for Asheville Dental Care created by IRISHGUY Design Studio. Artist Gary Crossey.

Illustration by Gary Crossey

WEBSITE REDESIGN Interior Design

Asheville Website Redesign

URL greesonandfast.com

Greeson & Fast were ready for a website redesign. The theme selection was a basic Hero slideshow with a simple grid system layout. The client liked the user-friendly experience on their previous website design.

Accordion Navigation for Content

Using an accordion system to display content provides the right look for the website. The design objective – clean and fresh. The clients interior design work does speak for itself. In the Portfolio Session, there are no words; the entire page is a wall of beautiful photos. I strongly recommended keyword conscience content on the other pages. The design that we arrived at was to use an accordion navigation system. Search Engines can easily rank the page content – and the end user can request to see as much or as little of the written content.

Accordion Content WordPress Website

 

Asheville Website Redesign

Asheville Web Design Sample
Click to Enlarge

 

MOTION GRAPHICS Frame-by-Frame

posted in: Animation, Zillion Projects | 0

Frame-by-Frame Animation

Spinning Head GIF Animation

GIF Animation

Longer GIF Animation of Spinning Head

Animation created frame-by-frame using Photoshop.

Animation by Gary Crossey

Frame-by-Frame Special Effect

Creating special effects frame-by-frame is not the norm. Most graphic designers and video editors would turn to Adobe After Effects. And, yes, I too love working with Adobe After Effects. However, as an experienced After Effects user, I understand the limits. I know what I want a particular look I need to do it myself.

Animation frame-by-frame by Asheville IrishGUy

WEB DESIGN Sweet Carolina Labradoodles

Asheville Web Site Design

Minimalistic Website Design

Website Design - Striking the Right Balance.

The best web designers have the talent and experience to create the right balance between graphic design and technology. Website design technologies have come a long way. In the early 1980's Edward Tufte said that informational design needs to be minimalism to be understood. Last year, web technology and design concepts caught up with visual communications century old standards and perceptions.

Today's world engage with online content differently than before. We measure a person's attention span in seconds. We rate 3-seconds to load a home page as slow. We know experienced online users reject superfluous content as meaningless and distracting. Web users know what they want.

Web Site Features

  • Blog.
  • Online Payment.
  • Online Forms. 
  • Slideshow. 
  • Gallery.
  • Newsletter.
  • Countdown Clock. 

sweetcarolinalabradoodles.com

Less-Is-More have a Focal Point.

For the Sweet Carolina Labradoodles (SCL) website design project - we began with the end user in mind. With the graphic design approach of Less-is-More. With any internet site, it is important not to overwhelm your audience. Creating a primary focal point is essential.

For Sweet Carolina Labradoodles the focus on the homepage is the dogs. Nothing more, and nothing less. The right amount of information is on the homepage. The audience is welcomed to the website and embraced with the strong brand colors for Sweet Carolina Labradoodle. 

Sidebar Features

On the sidebar is the "Countdown Clock." for the new arrivals of puppies. The sidebar also includes quick links to the bio pages and recent blog posts. The SCL website design holds true to essential elements of graphic design.

Establish your Brand

The logo and brand color are clearly stated and instantly understood. The Brand secured without distracting or overshadowing the doggie photos.

Layer Information

Successful modern web design can be highly intricate. For SCL the design involved a layered approach. Presenting information and functions to the end user as they needed them. For the first time visitor to the site, there are the large photos and links to each's dog's bio. There is more information available for someone research adopting a dog. As well as an adoption application for website visitors who wishes to begin the adoption process.

 

Have More Information Available

Have information to discover for users who wish to dig deeper. 

As well as more details. Have functions for users who want to engage. When your audience needs to participate with you - make it easy. 

For Sweet Carolina Labradoodles we made the online process seamless, cost-effective, and straightforward to complete.

 

 

Google Forms

Custom Google Forms were created and installed into the website. The Forms are an ideal method to collect user information. While there are many other online form solutions - Google Forms is a cost-effective way to gather base information.

 

Point-of-Sale

Yes, even small websites now need Point-of-Sales functions. Depending on the transaction type and amount their as many online payment solutions. For SCL keeping the payment system as easy to use was paramount. PayPal has secure payment tools that integrate well into a WordPress website. Paypal payment options are quite basic and well suited to easy money transactions. None of the money transactions for the SCL website are complicated. Paypal is also an excellent starting point for any internet site. The setup fees are minimal, with most of the expense generated after the transaction.

 

ANIMATION 3D Logo

posted in: Animation, Zillion Projects | 0

logo_corp

Animation 3D logo by Graphic Designer Gary Crossey

3D Logo Animation by graphic designer Gary Crossey

 

Animation Frames

Animation Frames by Graphic Designer Gary Crossey

As a graphic designer, it is often easier and faster for me to draw the frames that to use a 3D software to create the 3D object.

Animation frames by Asheville Graphic Desinger Gary Crossey

3D Development

Created on Blue Screen for post keying.

blk_side_0001

Animation Test Lighting

For 3D to be successful, you have to develop many stages. Developing in low res can save TONS of money.

animation testing 3D lighting

Animation 3D logo

Animation Test

3D Masks

Many Graphic Designers get lost in the 3D world. Thankfully, I love working in both 2D and 3D – and often exchanging between both environments.

logomask013D model Moask

 

CLASS Mastering the NC Digital Library Workshop

posted in: Classes | 0

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute

Course Dates: October 1, 2016
Times: 9 a.m. – noon
Instructor(s): Gary Crossey
Course Catalogs: 2016 Fall
Fee: $50

Join tech expert Gary Crossey to discover and learn how to use free digital library services, opening a world of easily accessed media and information. Learn how to search, reserve, download and return free eBooks and audio books from multiple sources and discern best practices for digital publications. A Buncombe County library card is required.

Gary Crossey() is an adult professional development instructor, author, and library advocate. Gary’s teaching awards include Adobe Education Trainer, and AB-Tech Continuing Education Faculty Member of the Year.

DOODLE ART Connections

Illustration by Gary Crossey

Circle & Lines

I still don’t understand why my studio went without a scanner for any length of time. I am such a scanner fan. I love how I can capture different stages of a drawing. Often the steps toward the end images can create unusual patterns – that may not be as present in a later stage of the design process.

Digital Illustration

Repeating and position the copies in a circle motion. The overlapping design forms a large hexagon pattern.

By Gary Crossey

Circle and lines by Gary Crossey Graphic DesignerPattern created by Graphic Designer Gary Crossey (Asheville).

Hand Drawn Illustrations

Doodle Art – Ink Illustrations.

I always like drawing with ink. It was until discovering Aubrey Beardsley (1984) that I became a huge enthusiast. (2017) Many of my design inspirations still pull from Beardsley’s influence.The illustrations tend to work best for me when they have a resistance to color.

The starkness of the Black and White hand drawn illustrations always interests me. Hand-drawn ink illustrations reach into a moment. Long enough to create an interpretation. There are no redos. Each line is a commitment.

Doodle art by Graphic designer Gary Crossey

Hand Drawn Illustration - Ink

Read my MINDFUL DOODLES Publication

WEBSITE DESIGN Asheville Dental Care

ILLUSTRATION Story Book

The story of Vida and Murphy is an old one. I called on my friend Vivian to compose a short story (without warning or time to work on the story).

The Storybook Project marks my introduction to the computer. At which time I was using the computer to scan original artwork.

illustration-gary-crossey-vivian-morgani-cover-page

COVER: The cover sets the tone for the book. Blue Watercolors with painful typesetting. The typesetting is so bad that I completely love it.

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

Illustration By Gary Crossey

illustration-gary-crossey-vivian-morgani-page-14

illustration-gary-crossey-vivian-morgani-page-15

  • The scan of print-out does not capture the texture of the stage. The scene created with circular paper cut outs pieced together.
  • Both drawings of Vida were cut out of paper and wrapped with arrows. The background is watercolor with tulips.
  • The Vida portrait with single red tulip is to me the most important image of the story.

STORYBOOK MATERIALS

  • Watercolors.
  • Paper cutouts.
  • Character sketches.

DESIGN Business Icons

3D Icon Designs

Icon Design - Website

Icons for an Annual Report.

I began by modeling of the icons. Once I had my 3D design together, I created the lighting system with silver and gold lights to heighten the metal texture.

I did experiment will rotating the icons – though settled for a front on view with the 3D displayed as the depth to the icon.

I began the design process by modeling the icons in 3D. Once I had my 3D design together, I created the lighting system with silver and gold lights to heighten the metal texture. I did experiment will rotating the icons – though settled for a front on view with the 3D displayed as the depth to the icon.

With the expectation of the Interface Icon, the artwork was simple outlines then extruded to 3D.

Icon – Disc

Software Division
Icon Design by IrishGuy

Icon – Eye

Icon Design Eye

Icon – Mouse

Icon design mouse

Icon – Interface

For the interface icon, I extend the 3D style by including tall handles.
Icon design interface

Icon – Lightbulb

Icon design lightbulb

Business Icons in Action

Business Icon Designed by graphic designer Gary Crossey

Graphic Design Sample - Icon Layout

PHOTOGRAPHY Hand Study

Photography by Gary Crossey - Hand Study

The photography hand study was created using a scanner. The hand was positioned in the scanner and held still while capturing. During the process, the model had to hold her hand completely still. The process created a visual tension that I was after. I experimented with a similar process using a camera and sheet of glass – None of the pressure appeared when the hand was held for a few seconds as it did when held for a few minutes. The effect of the glass against the fingertips really reinforces that sense of pressure and force pushing down.  To the effect to almost remove the imprint of the fingerprint.

Photography Hand Study for CD Cover

Photography by Gary Crossey IrishGuy - Foot Study

CD Cover – Brave Hands

PHOTOGRAPHY Boy George

Boy George Photography by Gary Crossey (IrishGuy)

 

Boy George - Photographer Gary Crossey

Backstage with Boy George (Heaven – London).

Soundcheck

Photography by Gary Crossey

Tasty Tim Bash – London

Bunny & Boy George performing a David Bowie cover in Heaven nightclub (London).

Boy George

Photography by Gary Crossey - Boy George

Photographer Gary Crossey Boy George & Bunny

Fantastic photography assignment and night out in London.

The event was hosted by Tasty Tim at Heaven Nightclub (London).

Boy George performed to a private VIP party. The David Bowie cover was incredible.

The photos were published on London rags and social media websites.

 

 

 

Digital Literacy

posted in: Class Resources | 0

VIDEO – Media Literacy

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Most young people are comfortable using modern technology. Social Media and other Digital Communication skills are second nature. However, there are strong focuses that use the media to control their message.

How can we trust media?

Begin, by question how we use media and technology. By learning how we use media we will be able to.

  1. Make Choices
  2. Take Decisions
  3. Communicate

Build Strong Tech Skills

Know your environment. Take the time to learn the tech skills required. And, keep learning. Understand what content you need and what content is not needed. When searching for content online you need to be aware of.

  • Nasty Content and Viruses.

What is Media News

Everyone there are thousands of worthy news stories to report. However, in any given day only a few story will be broadcast as news worthy. With a smaller group of media outlets filtering the mainstream news hub.

Online Marketing

Online marketers are smarter than ever before. The online marketer now knows you. They know where you live. What shows you like, What size of colors you like. The books you read. The books you want to read. The items that you wish to buy. The marketers know you, your family, and everyone of your friends.

digital-literacy-professional-development

 

How to tell a Digital Story

The key to successful Digital Storytelling is to keep it simple. The COFFEE tutorial is an excellent example of how photography and Adobe Voice can work together to deliver a seamless digital experience.

Moreover, perhaps it is time for Weekend Coffee. Put the kettle on and enjoy.

1. Setting the Digital Storytelling Scene

Begin by creating your scene. Envision where you what your stage to be. Use your camera and lighting to run test shots for possible scenes. Keep it simple.

For the COFFEE tutoring video – I used a kitchen table to place my items. Think of the things as your actors, and position them where they can deliver your message best. It is important to have your story ready and to do a few practice rounds before committing.

With COFFEE the positioning of the items – begins with the coffee jar and moves right to the sugar, milk, and water.

Photography by Gary Crossey IrishGuy - How to make Coffee

2. Start your Digital Storytelling Experience

What are the things in your digital story? I used Adobe Photoshop to add ID text. Consider your viewer when adding labels to photos. In my case, most people know what a cup and spoon are. Even with the most annoying names – find a way to be useful.

Boiling Water – having the instruction in use boiling water is more user-friendly than the label Kettle.

Photography by IrishGuy Gary Crossey - Asheville

3. Tell Your Digital Story

One step (or a teaspoon at a time). Consider how the instruction and the objects in the scene interact with each other. For the instruction to add one teaspoon of coffee – the coffee jar is positioned in full view, with the lid (open) and in center view. The hand reaches from the right. During the storytelling, the length of the arm decrease – helping to carry the viewer’s eye from left to right.

how-to-make-coffee_frame03

4. The steps to Digital Storytelling success

Establish the pace. The sugar jar seizes the position of the coffee. The sugar jar lid resumes the location and position that the coffee jar lid – creating a learning expectation. The end user can focus on the essential element of the lesson by not having to consider the less valuable items.  By positioning the lid from each jar in the same location, the viewer does not have to second question what the item is.

Photography by IrishGuy Gary Crossey Add sugar to coffee cup

5. Maintain the Pace

Maintaining the pace for a Digital Story is hard. When teaching a step-by-step process, the user focus does best when the other items on the stage do not upstage the frame message.

Positioning the jar of Coffee and Sugar – back in their place – is created by the pattern established in the first four frames. Always look for opportunities in your storytelling to provide objects in your scene “their place”.

Add Milk to Coffee - Photography by Gary Crossey for IrishGuy Asheville

6. Enhance you Message

Enhance your Digital Story Lesson with visual effects. Reducing the exposure rate of the camera created a time-lapse. The motion of the hand is reinforced by the prior frames – with the hand is also shot in stillness. The hand motion was set up by leaving shooting the image with a long exposure.

Look for moments to enhance your message with special effects. However, be careful not to let the special effect overshadow your message.

Visual Effects are powerful tools that overpower a weak story.  

Stir Coffee

7. One Step at a Time

The second to last frame – this is where everything can go wrong. The end user has already figured out that the water is next. All other items have had their turn and have returned to their spot.

When creating this second to the last frame – maintain. Yes, manage and deliver the frame as expected.

Try not to break your visual pattern by moving items around, or altering the camera focus.  By planning the stage layout before beginning to photograph the frames – you can imagine the position of objects. Grouping the Coffee, Sugar, and Milk together allows the viewer to capture the three prior elements quickly and calculate that that process involved four steps.

The learning process in this frame would less if the jars had not resumed their original position, with the caps restored.

how-to-make-coffee_frame07

8. Show the Result

What have we achieved? Was the lesson plan a success?

The successful reader of the Digital Story Lesson has a new or refined skill or piece of knowledge.

The Show The Result frame finalizes the lesson.  There is no more ground work, no more questions, no more information to share. The viewer has this last frame to grasp the importance, and leave with a deeper understanding.

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9. Provide that Something Extra

Include something extra. Wrap up the experience with a helpful piece of information – that some of the users can use. The Digital Storytelling Lesson taught the user how to make a cup of coffee. The frame provides the user with the information they can add liquor to the drink – with the disclaimer that adding this step is limited to weekend use.

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10. Recap the Essentials

Recap the overall process. When teaching a class – this is a perfect final slide that can be left on the screen for students to capture the information they need. Don’t treat this Digital Storytelling Lessons like a cooking show – that would end highlighting the final product. With a Digital Storytelling Lesson, it is best to recap the main points in the final frame (which may often be a repeat of the first frame).
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DOODLE Phone Call

Doodle Art Phone Call by Gary Crossey

Doodle Art inspired by a phone call from a friend. The beginning sketch (below) centers on the brightest, fullest sunflower (you have to imagine your own yellow). What makes doodle art interesting is that often the patterns created take on an element of math.

Doodle Art by Gary Crossey Phone call eary The Phone Call doodle echoes the number 6.

The design elements either double to 12 items or reduce to 3 design elements.

The design has six main sections, which content central design elements of six dots, three on either side. With 3 dots leading out of each division, to be greeted with a 3 stack column. Most (but not all) of the shell-fanning are groups of 12.

The final part of the math is to divide the largest of the echoed numbers 12, by the lowest echoed number 3. 12 / 3 = 4. Creates the format that the design reaches out to four panels, while also growing out of groups of four shell-fans that bands around the Sunflower.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Black Walnut Inn

Black Walnut Inn – Asheville NC

The Black Walnut Inn Bed & Breakfast in downtown Asheville now have my photography on their website. Over the past year, I have worked with Black Walnut Inn to update their photography catalog.

The photography includes samples of the Bed & Breakfast

  • Bedroom photography.
  • Dining room photography
  • Photography of the the gardens.

PHOTOGRAPHY New Pals

Photography By Gary Crossey - The New Pals 2016 (Chicken and Cat)
TITLE: The New Pals – Photography by Gary Crossey
The New Pals - Part 2 Photography by Gary Crossey

Pablo (chicken) and Timmy (cat) have become quite the new pals. Shortly after being born, Pablo was rejected from the nest. His small body submerged in a dirty puddle. The following days his body remained motionless. Baking under a red heat lamp. By day seven Pablo has gained the strength to stand.

Since then, Pablo has become an attractive addition to the farm. He has a large personality. Big talker. With a range of sounds for “Give me Food”, “The Water Dish is Empty – again!“, and “I want a cuddle”.

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LOCATION: Soapbox Farm – Asheville NC.

 

 

SET DESIGN: Rose Garden

Design by Gary Crossey

Theater Set Design for Alice

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Photography for the scene

I began building the scene from photography. Even though I am a whiz with Photography many of photos do not get greatly altered for my projects.  In most cases I shot what I am after – and do simple touch up and adjustments with Photoshop.
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Tree Truck Photography

The nail photography was shot by Brian Jones – and worked perfectly.

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The base of the trees from created from photography I shot of carpet patterns in Vegas.

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BRANDING: Small Business Package

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Asheville Business Card Design

Asheville Business Card Design by Gary CrosseyAsheville Business Card Design can mean one of two things. A business card that is designed without a brand.

The Hands on Health Asheville Branding Project included a range of graphic design services. I worked with the Asheville startup to develop a strong logo design package.

Due to the nature of the business model – and the over saturation in the Asheville market. It was important to create a design that was different – while still having a local appeal.

Branding Development and Logo Design. 

Doing the graphic design for the business card samples had many firm visual guidelines that were easy to follow and adopt a strong visual design.

I have said it before – creating a business card is often the first that your graphic designer can test the guidelines of your Branding Package.

Asheville Branding, Logo Design, and Business Card

 

Improve your Asheville Business

Asheville is very much a word-of-mouth small town. You are as likely to run into more people are the local grocery store, than at a nightclub. The upside to this is that Asheville grocery stores are quite common and happening places. Often with free internet and awesome coffee.

Due to the clients word-of-mouth appeal, I created the appointment card on the back of the business card – making it easy to secure follow-up appointments.

The client said that the scheduling feature was a great success – often while buying groceries.

Other Graphic Design Projects

  • Logo Design.
  • Outdoor Signage.
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Outdoor Signage

Website Design and Development Projects

Other aspects of the project included website repair and custom programming for the company website.

The company website was on a limited service hosting plan. While the templates were complicated and limiting – I was able to rewrite most of the code to transfer the website interface over to the brand palette.

Sure, the entire process took many hours of coding (way too many hours). But, you know I love to overwrite code – there is nothing better that I like to do. I am quite a master at CSS and figuring out how to best control any website element.

Rewriting the template to reflect the new company brand colors for my client was an awesome power of CSS. I don’t often get to show off my CSS programming skills. That all changed with this project – to be honest – I took a good guess on most of the CSS coding.

For more information on creating custom website solutions for your business or personal website.

GRAPHIC DESIGN: Yellow Pages Ad

The fun part about designing a Yellow Pages Ad is the color. Black and yellow. Sure there is an entire range of yellows that you can use until that yellow become black. Often, yellow pages ad feel more like a school assignment from “Principles of Design” class. The only difference, Principles of Design is the study of black and white.

Yes, some businesses use yellow pages ads. Some firms even generate business from yellow pages ads. It is always good to at least test your target market out. Perhaps there is an opening for an older demographic to your market share. Reach them with a well designed yellow pages ad.

Asheville Yellow Pages Ad

Creating contrast is key to standing out. And don’t over do it. Clean and straightforward. For the yellow pages ad I choice to highlight the phone number and availability. With the location visually following behind.

For this yellow pages ad I choice to simplify the logo – by leaving the icon off. With the health icon for artwork and the list of services. Along with licensing and insurance tagline.  IN the space of a business card. Something had to go to provide some breathing room. While including the message the client want to confer.

IrishGuy Asheville Website & Development provided the online services for this ad campaign. The online campaign worked alongside the print and marketing campaign.

The yellow pages ads were as used in low-cost local marketing. The ads printed well in black and white – and showcased the local small business. The yellow pages ads were part of a much larger branding project.

Yellow Pages Ad Graphic Designer Gary Crossey
Graphic Designer Gary Crossey

ANIMATION: Sky GIF

posted in: Animation, Zillion Projects | 0

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Sky../ Journey

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Photographs of leaving Ireland. The photos were later pieced together in Photoshop to create a short string of motion.

The idea of jumping on a plane, and heading off. All quite easy to do.

But sometimes those plane flights are different. Sometimes, they only go one way. The homeward bound flight when a home is away from home. That is this flight. The flight when I left Ireland. The animated GIF’s capture and repeat forever that moment – the moment I left.

Like most days in Ireland, the sky is low and heavy with clouds. The dense darkness engulfs a few of the frames.  Clouds so thick they block the light, leaving you in darkness.

Photography by Gary Crossey

Above the Clouds

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Plane Wing

Animation by Gary Crossey - Plane WIng

Plane On Roadway

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Above the cloud Stop-frame Animation

BLOG: How to create a logo

AI-Rough-Sketch-LogoWhen creating a logo – the process can be very different from one client to the next. Often the clients expectations and lack of experience can account for the varied design processes.

Designing a Logo for a Brand

Given my client pool, I am lucky to work with creative people. I surround myself with skillful and creative types that are seldom wrong when it comes to the principles of visual composition.

When clients come to me for graphic design services – they often have the design concept and brand philosophy developed. At which time – my role as the graphic designer is defined. I am there to ensure that the logo renders correctly and is aesthetically pleasing – while reaching the project design objective.

Designing the logo for a Brand. That’s the natural Logo Design approach. The conceptual developmental of the Brand is complete. The visual logo simply needs to acquire the right personality.

And the Rough Sketches can quickly move into refined ideas.

Designing a Logo without a Brand

Yes, I know – as a graphic designer we should never let this happen. But it does. Maybe you like the business idea or the client is refreshing, or you just feel like giving someone a break. Whatever the reason – you allow the client to move forward to the design process, without a brand. With the idea of working backward to establish the brand philosophy.

The difference between the old client and the newbie is that the experienced have structured their thoughts into a formatted project plan. The other client this has the ideas in their head. It isn’t that they don’t know – they just have never been asked before. And so the process begins.

From Logo to Brand

For most of the world, the role of Branding and Logo Design is confusing. The experienced graphic designer understands that the Brand is the business reputation – the business equity – built upon reliable products and reliable service.

The Logo Design – while the logo is the first visual component of the branding process. The logo does not stand alone to create or maintain the business values and customer loyalty.

For more information on how to build a strong, loyal brand – read my blog BUILDING A BRAND.

Creating a logo without a brand is not an ideal approach. But, as many graphic designers understand – especially those graphic designers that work with start-ups. You as the designer may be the first person in the world to ask your clients about their business goals.

Your Graphic Designer is the only person who cares to ask you branding questions

Be honest, no-one else is interested in our work ideas. People are not stopping me in the street and asked about my yearly business goals, or what I hope to achieve ten years from now. No one cares about my moral stands. I do however get stopped in the grocery store to answer computer tech and design questions. Which is typically fine, expect when selecting toilet rolls – that I like to do alone.

Building the Brand backward

The logo creating begins. In this case, the client was more visual that conceptual.

Early Logo Roughs

Get the design ball rolling with simple sketches.

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DIRECT MAIL: Postcard Designs

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Seasonal Greeting Card

The Seasonal Greeting cards are part a larger branding campaign.   

  • Catalog.
  • Website and Online Store. 
  • Print ads and Flyers.
  • Posters, Banners, and Signage.
  • Series of greeting cards.
  • Postcards - with discount programs. 
  • Seasonal Greeting Cards. 

Asheville Postcard Design – Moogfest

Created for the Moogfest after party. Moogfest was a blast - with a pumping after party with DJ iGUY.

Asheville Postcard Design – Metropolis

Club Metropolis Club flyer.
Asheville NC

Asheville Postcard Design – Hairspray

Club Hairspray - Asheville NC. Rather than creating two postcards for two different events – we went with the concept to feature one event on each side of the Postcard. The printing cost was reduced by half.

Asheville Postcard Design – Kings

Calling on Adobe Photoshop to quickly create some visual effects for the back of the postcard.

Asheville Postcard Design – Art Opening

Art Opening Asheville: Intersection:8
The photographic journey of eight men.
There were an entire series of postcards created for the Art Opening. Here are a handful of the samples.

Postcard Design – Asheville Adobe User Group

Postcard Designed for the Asheville Adobe User Group to market upcoming event.

DESIGN: Presentation

Awards Presentation Graphics

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Asheville Awards Presentation Graphics created by Gary Crossey of IrishGuy Graphic Design.

The journey with the Asheville Chamber of Commerce and the MEA began by setting up the Manufactured in Western North Carolina – where creativity and technology meet Innovative Solutions stamp. The graphic combines the Asheville Chamber of Commerce mountain icon with technology pixels. Working on the Branding team for Manufactured in Western North Carolina was an impressive project – bringing pixels to the Western North Carolina mountains.

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We created all aspects of the graphics for the Asheville Chamber of Commerce award presentation.

Background Artwork

Beginning with my photography – I select a series of business buildings for the background artwork. Using Photoshop, I removed undesired elements from the photography – cleaning windows, deleting objects from the windows, mirroring the image, and coloring to red. The live version of the background artwork had graphical animations that ran the length of the building to the center.

Wallpaper Design by Gary Crossey

Award Presentation

The Award Presentation was delivered using Director. The Award Presentation include integrated animations, video, infographics, all to a 154 step program.

Yes, this show had 154 show calls – this was more than a slideshow.

Background Animation

The 3D background animation had 5 interactive layers.

AWARD Digital Storytelling

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Adobe award to Gary Crossey for Digital Storytelling

Crossey Receives Adobe Award for Digital Storytelling

Adobe Award for Digital Storytelling (Asheville, NC) – Technology offers unlimited global reach for personal storytelling and experiential sharing via digital tools and social media platforms. Gary Crossey, CEO, Irish Guy Productions (www.irishguy.us), an Asheville-based business, has been recognized by Adobe Education for Digital Storytelling curriculum design.

“We live in a world where students have unlimited resources to create, revise and share their unique stories with students and teachers around the world,” notes Crossey, a native of Northern Ireland. “I am honored that Adobe has recognized me for my work utilizing current digital trends to connect Asheville students with global audiences.”

Crossey received his B.A. from AIU of Atlanta. In 2009, AB Tech Community College honored him as the Continuing Education Faculty Member of the Year. In addition, Crossey has received Adobe Education Awards for Animation, App Design Training, Digital Creativity, Digital Imaging, Digital Storytelling, Graphics & Illustration, Publishing, Teacher Training, Video Editing, and Web Design.

Digital Storytelling Projects

AWARD Adobe Teacher Trainer

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Adobe Train the Trainer Awards

Crossey Honored As Adobe Education Trainer

Adobe Educational Trainer Award(Asheville, NC) — Gary Crossey, CEO, Irish Guy Productions (www.irishguy.us), has been honored as an Adobe Education Trainer. This award adds to his long list of achievements.

Crossey previously received Adobe awards for Animation, App Design Training, Digital Creativity, Digital Imaging, Graphics & Illustration, Publishing, Teacher Training, Video Editing, and Web Design.

A native of Northern Ireland, Crossey received his B.A. from AIU Atlanta. He has taught computer classes for faculty and staff at UNC Asheville, AB Tech Community College, and other institutions. In 2009, AB Tech honored Crossey as the Continuing Education Faculty Member of the Year.

Infographic: Red Hoops

Full View of Red Hoops

I designed the Red Hoop images for a manufacturing awards event. Included on this page are 4 or the 30 images created.

The cropped images express the close relationships that parts of the manufacturing community overlap and rely upon. The Full View of Red Hoops represents that local Asheville manufacturing community. Toward the center of the infographic - the overlapping is dense. The relationships are more engaged. The engagement level reduces as you move to the edges of the infographic.

Infographic for Asheville Award Presentation

RED Hoops series of infographics installation.
EVENT: Asheville Chamber of Commerce Award Presentation.

Graphic Designer Gary Crossey -Full View of Red Hoops

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POSTCARDS: Crowne Plaza

Crowne Plaza Directional Postcard Series

I created a series of directional postcards for Crowne Plaza – Atlanta. The cards for printed and given to customers who were interested in particular Atlanta attractions. The postcards were a welcomed tool for the hotel concierge and the Crowne Plaza customers.

Map Making

Not everyone can make a map. And, even fewer people can write clear directions. I did both for this projects.

Are the directions correct? The instructions are all right. I walked every one of them to be sure.

The Importance of Research

As a designer doing your research is always key to a successful project. The directions that were provided by the client had been pulled from the internet and were mostly incorrect. I always check the information submitted to ensure that I am creating the result that my customer needs. What’s the point in creating a directional postcard that is wrong?

I walked all the routes. Drunk coffee and discovered the most enjoyable path. I then wrote directions and created the maps for each route.

Postcard Design

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GRAPHIC DESIGN: HEville

VIDEO ANIMATION

HEville Launch

I used tiny dots to create the graphics for the HEville launch. Each dot represented each member of the HEville network. During the launch party, the animations were protected. With the cycle coming to rest on the male silhouette. The same color palette was carried into the event.

 

 

 

Banner Ads

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Store Banner Ad

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Online Sign-Up Banner

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Launch Graphics

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BANNER ADS created for Launch of the HEville Social Networking Web Site.

 

GRAPHIC DESIGN: CD Cover Design

Pour Myself a Cup of Ambition

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LINK TO PLAYLIST – FOLLOW the Playlist for future updates.

CD Cover Design
CD Cover Design by Gary Crossey

Tech Choices

CD Cover Design created for a CoffeeTime Project. Now, back by popular request. With an updated Spotify playlist of 45 coffee related sounds. The CD cover is Low-Res webcam photography. The artwork images are tiny. I created the checkerboard design on the front because the photos couldn’t get much bigger without becoming entirely pixelated. There was something satisfying about working within the limitations of digital art.

Artwork Choices

The low-res quality of the image had personal appeal. Being blind in one eye, I connected. Tech was able to express my view of the world. The portrait of myself captures my visual field. With the dominant eye visible while the other not. The portrait photography mirrors from a prior painting with the same composition.

Pour Myself a Cup of Ambition

Created while at design school – engaging my future as a visual artist – with one eye.

Package Design – CD Cover

Pour yourself a Cup of Ambition 

The coffee inspired CD release. First created in 2001 with  coffee related songs. I designed the CD cover and arranged the music – each CD came with a small bag of coffee (enough to make one pot).

Fast Forward to 2015 – and Pour yourself a cup of ambition is now a Spotify playlist. Brew some coffee and enjoy.

ILLUSTATION – Record Player

3D Models – Laser Records

Half the joke about the Laser Records illustrations is that when they were created records were surely disappearing. The larger record stored had all but closed. Record players were not selling, not alone “being the top bought Christmas gift for 2015”.

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3D illustration by Gary Crossey Logo Design - DJ

What song do you think would be best listened to on a laser record player?

Creating 3D art is special. Unable 2D art, you can’t doodle in 3D (and I do love to doodle). In 3D you build. You begin with a blank screen and you begin to build. However, knowing how to build in 3D is where the art and creativity is most present.

3D requires careful planning and consideration. Silimar to the process of a conceptual artist – all the ideas, questions, and concerns are answered prior to building.

The wonderful reward from 3D creations are the many views that one art piece can generate.

SET DESIGN: Cheshire Cat

Cheshire Cat

Stage design by Gary Crossey

There was something about this scene that was so, important to get right. The entire scene runs for near seven minutes during which time the green screen cat interacts with the live dancers. I loved how the cat running across the screen looked – that was super fun to make.

 

The green screen life action of the appearing and disappearing cat was timed to the ballet performance.

The cat was first shot on green screen. From our storyboard, all the scenes were shot. The laughter mouth footage – was shot with the dancer moving their head forward and back. During a life performance, the actions would have been perfect. However, for the final scene of having a large mouth – laughing and floating around the stage – meant the dancer’s head should have been still – so I could add a mask and reveal what I wanted. With the mouth movement – and the dancer out of town until the day before opening night. I turned to Adobe After Effects.

Using the tracing features in After Effects, I was able to track the inside of the dancers mouth – I think I track a tooth! After placing a keyframe in every frame, I then centered all the frames – which resulted in freezing the dancers head motion.

Before applying the mouth-shaped mask, it was almost impossible to watch the mouth footage. Once the mask was in place – and all the edges were cleaned up, and the magic dust was applied -the footage worked great.

Building The Scene

The background had to hold video footage and have the ability to act as a 3D scene. Nothing in the scene was shot together. I created the forest scene from more than 350 of my photographs. The bark on the trees was completely resurfaced with bark from another tree. Plants were cropped, resized, and arranged to create the entire scene. It was a beautiful experience of starting from a blank screen and collection of my photos – and start building a scene.

Stage design by Gary Crossey

 

 

 

 

 

VIDEO EDITING: Asheville DJ

Asheville Motion Graphics

My design work began in the nightclubs of Atlanta. Back then I created frame-by-frame animations. Now, I pull in the strong arms of Adobe After Effects to create my motion graphics. Using After Effects to create tempo-synchronized graphics. The background patterns were created in Adobe Illustrator for the website and incorporated into the piece installation.

Motion Graphics created for Asheville DJ iGuy. The video piece was integrated into a one-page website design. The visual were also used with projectors for special Asheville party event.

Asheville Motion Graphics for DJ iGuy

Motion Graphic Sample

The motion graphic effect created for the video.

Animated GIF

ARTWORK: Asheville Building

Asheville Flatiron Building

I am a big fan of the Asheville Flatiron building. The buildings placement in downtown Asheville creates a strong presence.

Illustration - Asheville Flatiron Building

I drew the Asheville Flatiron Building illustration for a retail website. I created the graphic in vector, making the images fully scalable.

Graphic posted on the Native Ireland Website, Print Ads, and Publications.

Flatiron Building Asheville Illustration by Gary Crossey

POSTER DESIGN: Adobe User Group

Poster Design

Poster Design created for the Asheville Adobe User Group. The user group was a creative resource for local graphic designs, photographers, videographers, visual artists, web designers, teachers, and people interested in creating visual arts.

The poster features the cables connecting to the back of the head – similar to how the User Group were connecting with one another.

3D MODELING: Room

Futuristic 3D Modeling

All 3D projects begin with a blank screen and an idea. For this project, I started with the sofa design. Modern, clean design, shape lines, and pointed metal feet. The metal carries to the tables, lighting fixtures, and mirror. Balancing the room with a red accent from the lamp and flower vase.

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The only rendering of the room with the glass on the table. The glass was later removed to help balance the content on both tables to two items each.

View03

I love the look of the glass top table. I did use Raytrace filter on the glass and metal surfaces. Which provides the surfaces with a reflectiveness. In the case of the glass top table, you can see how the light travels differently through the glass depending on the viewers angle.

View04

The even number was carried throughout the room.

  • Four legs.
  • Two legs for the table lamp.
  • Four brackets for the mirror frame.
  • Four bands around the lamp.

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POSTCARD: Dentist

Modern Postcard Designs

A series of postcard designs created of the dentist Scott D Neal DDS. Scott requested for something a bit different than all the other dentists were doing. The design direction used a combination of my abstract photography and graphics.

The second postcard began by drawing the figure and toothbrushes. The male figure graphic was included in the branding package.

Icon Design

Graphic Design & Photography by Gary Crossey IrishGuy.
By Gary Crossey

Postcard Design by Gary Crossey IrishGuy for Dentist

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Postcard Design by Gary Crossey

BRANDING: What Makes a Brand?

posted in: Branding, Zillion Projects | 0

What is Branding?Personal preference identifies that people relate to a brand name that they understand. People are attracted to meaningful and memorable brands.

what_is_a_brandWhat make a Brand?

A brand needs to be Memorable, Pronounceable, and Spellable.

Memorable.

The core of a great company, organization or group is creating a name that people can easily recall.

Pronounceable.

Most people appreciate when they can say the company name. Or, you can opt out to be another one of those establishments that its customer base refers to as “that place near the Post Office” or “Oh no, the other place.”

Spellable.

Yes, it is true – everyone is on “The Google”. With the help of Google auto-type, our typos are significantly reduced. But, what happens when you can’t recall the first letter? It’s one of those unpronounceable names.

  • Sounds like?
  • It might be foreign.
  • It could be made up.

Make reaching your Target Market easy

Make brand accessible to your target market. Help your customers find you by having a name that is easy to recall, pronounce, and spell.

When a person is unable to remember how to pronounce or spell your Brand – the person is left searching online for your service. An action that promotes your competition.

DESIGN Three Little Pigs

Graphic Design Work by Gary Crossey
WATCH: The Three Little Pigs

The opening of Cheap Joes Art Supplies in Asheville has inspired me to get back to basics. My basics consist of two design tools.

  1. The power of doodles.
  2. The captivation of photography.

I created the design work for The Three Little Pigs for a Digital Storytelling Class. Not to waste a good doodle, I looked in my collection for a background image. Then quickly set about making my paper-cut-out house and a black sharpie.

Project Objective

The objective of the project is to demonstrate how easy and fast Adobe Slate is to publish content. The Three Little Pigs took an hour to create the scenes, edit the photos, and have published online.

WATCH: The Three Little Pigs

BLOG: Color Trends 2016

REVIEW: 2016 Pantone Color Selection

Every year, I look forward to the Pantone Color predictions. And, if colors are anything to go by - 2016 is about going back to basics. The design craze is clean and precise. Pure color has returned to mainstream culture.

Do color trends reflect modern society?

The selection of the top ten color predictions for 2016 is not random. The selection is a sincere reflection of our modern society. Most people do not notice color trends. The consumer dollar depends upon its success.

People who work with color - do so with meaning and intent. I have spent hundreds of hours processing color photography. I have trained my eye for Color Correction. And training my brain with Color Theory. And creating artwork with an in-depth knowledge of color limitation for print and the web. For people like me, color is much more than a general interest.

A bold statement with muted colors 

Muted Pink and Boy are the core color values for 2016. Normally, the core color value is only one color. For the first time, Pantone included two core colors. The muted pink and boy is a strong statement in the role of equality. In 2016, the role of men and women in society has changed. Core values are different. A redefining of the gender role has happened. And here we are, the muted pink and blue - one no louder than the other - on an equal playing field. A bold statement with muted colors.

Artwork by Gary Crossey

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What is important about the color selection? 

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COLOR - Back to Basics

Red-Yellow-Blue

The Red-Yellow-Blue (RYB) combination is perhaps the most meaningful. Red-Yellow-Blue combination make-up the primary colors for creating all other colors. Pantone showcases not the primary colors of Red, Yellow, and Blue. The message here is to get creative. Experiment with the primary colors - see what happens.

BattleShip Gray

Pantone reinforces its message to be creative and experiment with the Battleship Gray choice. The color that materializes when you mix too much Red-Yellow-Blue together. Pantone makes you fail a success.

Yes, too much pigment is a top trending color. There is no losing for experimenting with color in 2016.

Download 2016 Color Trend Swatches

Download the 2016 Color Trend color swatches for free from Adobe Color.

Click on the links: 

Ben creates artwork with Spring 2016 Pantone Color Selection.

http://create.adobe.com/2016/2/24/best_of_behance_ben_the_illustrator.html

Building the Perfect Classroom

posted in: Class Resources | 0

 

The Six Stages of Creativity wall graphics. The wall graphics began with a discussion with other teachers. The following two questions.

  1. What is your ideal active adult learning space?
    With active learning and flipped classroom teaching styles the students do best when provided one-on-one problem solving. And the classroom can handle working in groups, and alone. With devices becoming more lightweight and wireless we can start to imagine active teaching learning environments and classroom layout adapting to the different functions of the active learning. This idea is already very present in early learning classroom. But, what about the adults?
  2. How can we best adapt our classroom to best suite active learning for adults?
    Please share your creative layout solutions, experiences, or ideas for creating an active adult learning space.

Adobe included the discussion during a newsletter update – which created incredible insight to adult learning space.

classroom-design-discussion

PHOTOGRAPHY: Tonya Abernathy

Photography by Gary Crossey

Photographing Tonya Abernathy lead singer of The Robustos was always great fun. We worked on the red series using red lighting a low quality digital camera to create a low density image that I was after. The lighting effect did create visual artifacts that were later corrected in Photoshop.

CD insert design by Gary Crossey

Head shot by Asheville photographer Gary Crossey

The Robustos

Tonya has a great voice – that you can listen to right here! Enjoy.

PHOTO RESTORATION: Historical

Photo Restoration Services

Restoring your historical heirloom photos from water damage, mold damage, and even torn or ripped photos. Have your old family photos restored to their former glory. Here are a few examples of photographs that we restored for an Historical Jewish Website.

photo_restoration_remove_damage

PHOTO: Mold and tore damage.

Historic Photo Restoration by Gary Crossey Asheville

PHOTO: Heavy mold and marker damage.

Photo restore by Gary Crossey

PHOTO: Missing part of face with heavy mold damage.

Photo restore by Asheville IrishGuy

PHOTO: Metal strains, missing spots and visual damage around mouth.

jewish_histoical_photo_restoration_after

restoration_photo

PHOTO: Water spots and fold removed from photo.

Photo restoration of historical Jewish Photo

PHOTO: Large fold removed, water and mold damage removed. Missing spots restored.

jewish_histoical_photo_redtoration_after

Photo Restoration Experts

We can scan and restore your photos from any format, printed photograph, 35mm negatives, slides, and large format transparencies.

Photo Restoration Services

  • Color Correction.
  • Light Balance for unexposed photo.
  • Restore faded photography.
  • Restore damaged or torn photography.
  • Remove fold lines from photos.
  • Restore from fire, water, and mold damage.

High-Resolution Photography

All final photos are high-resolution photography for the highest quality printing.

OVERVIEW Yoko Ono

Artist Review Yoko Ono

Video Sample

  • Michael Snow – Wavelength
  • Robert Smithson
  • Joan Joans
  • Bruce Nauman

Michael Snow

TITLE: Wavelength

A summation of my nervous system, religious inklings and aesthetic ideas” Michael Snow

In the first scene, a woman in a fur coat enters the room accompanied by two men carrying a bookshelf or cabinet. The woman instructs the men where to place this piece of furniture and they all leave. Later, the same woman returns with a female friend, they drink the beverages they brought and listen to “Strawberry Fields Forever” on the radio. Long after they leave, what sounds like breaking glass is heard. At this point, a man (played by filmmaker Hollis Frampton) enters and inexplicably collapses on the floor. Later, the woman in the fur coat reappears and makes a phone call, speaking, with strange calm, about the dead man in her apartment whom she has never seen before.

In the end, one can hear what sound like police sirens, but could just as well be a part of the musical score, a distinct piece of minimalist music that pairs tones at random. These tones shift in frequency (and in “wavelength“) as the camera analyzes the space of the anonymous apartment. What begins as a view of the full apartment zooms (the zoom is not precisely continuous as the camera does change angle slightly, noticeably near the very end) and changes focus slowly across the forty-five minutes, only to stop and come into perfect focus on a photograph of the sea on the wall.

Robert Smithson

TITLE: Spiral Jetty

 

“The earth’s history seems at times like a story recorded in a book each page of which is torn into small pieces. Many of the pages and some of the pieces of each page are missing” – Robert Smithson

Nancy Holt and Robert Smithson

TITLE: Swamp

“it deals with limitations of perception through the camera eye as Bob and I struggled through a muddy New Jersey swamp. Verbal direction cannot easily be followed as the reeds crash against the camera lens blocking vision and forming continuously shifting patterns, confusion ensues.” Smithson said.

“it’s about deliberate obstructions or calculated aimlessness”.

This was attained by having Holt walk through the swamp while simultaneously filming, only seeing where she was walking by looking through the lens of her Bolex camera as Smithson gave her verbal instructions which he recorded as he spoke them.

Joan Jonas

Left side Right side
Jonas translates her performance strategies to video, applying the inherent properties of the medium to her investigations of the self and the body.
Jonas performs in a direct, one-on-one confrontation with the viewer, using the immediacy and intimacy of video as conceptual constructs. Exploring video as both a mirror and a masking device, and using her body as an art object, she undertakes an examination of self and identity, subjectivity and objectivity.
Creating a series of inversions, she splits her image, splits the video screen, and splits her identification within the video space, playing with the spatial ambiguity of non-reversed images (video) and reversed images (mirrors). Though Jonas’ approach is formalist and reductive, her performance reveals an ironic theatricality. Illustrating the phenomenology of video as a mirror, Left Side Right Side is a classic of early performance-based, conceptual video.

Bruce Nauman

Art Make Up
In each of these four related films, the artist applies a successive layer of colored makeup (white, pink, green, and finally black) to his face and upper torso. While he masks himself literally, the title implies that in so doing he also creates himself, “makes himself up.”
Initially, the films were intended to be projected simultaneously on four walls of a room. Although this form of installation was never realized for this piece, Nauman employed the method for subsequent film and video installations.
QUOTE Source: www.eai.org/title.htm?id=605

TITLE: Bottoms

TITLE: Cut Piece

TITLE: Match

TITLE: Film No 5 Smile 1968

TITLE: Rape 1969

TITLE: Fly 1970

TITLE: Freedom

TITLE: Erection 1971

TITLE: Sky TV 1966

Arnold Schonberg

Atonal Music Explained

Anton Webern

Alban Berg

Yoko Ono

TITLE: Yang Yang

TITLE: Two Virgins

TITLE: In Bed

Takahiko Limura

Yoji Kuri

TITLE: Love

Hiroshi Teshigahara

TITLE: Woman in the Dunes

REVIEW: 21st Century Enlightenment

posted in: Class Resources | 0

21st Century Enlightenment has bought us insight into individualism. We know more about how we function than any time prior.

As a society we create dications of life based on economic circumstance and social convention. Rather than on the empathic capacity of the person.

While the Utilitarian notion is to maximise human happiness. Research tells us that we are not good at predicting our own happiness.  And we are even worse at descripting past happiness.

Research also demonstrates that people tend to respond automatically. That conscious decision making is infrequently deployed in short-term decision making. We are no better at long-term decisions than we are with short-term decisions.

When it comes to making a decision we tend to turn to one of two options: 

  1. Right / True = Familiar.
  2. Wrong / False = Strange.

What went wrong with 21st Century Enlightenment?

As a society we have moved forward. Progress in evident in every area of life. People live longer. We experience an improved quality of life. As a society we have had a revolution in social attitudes toward civil rights including race, gender, and sexuality.

Until recently people have felt self-aware and socially embedded within our modern model of autonomy and progress. Until recently no-one raising substantive and ethical questions on how the three main Society Logics obtain progress.

The three main Society Logics

  1. Logics of Science & Technological. 
  2. Logics of the Markets.
  3. Logics of the Bureaucracy. 

The three deciding Society Logics answer only to their own objective. They are indifference to a substantive concern for the general good.

  • Bureaucracy –  Rationality of rules above the rationality of events.
  • Markets – If it can be sold, it should be sold.
  • Science & Technological  – Everything should be discovered and developed.

The short-term national concerns are superior than the long-term sustainable needs of the planet and it’s people.

Developing Ideals of Cultural Consciousness

Fostering communal, interpersonal, and global empathic capacity is essential for cultural consciousness. Media coverage and foreign travel have expanded global knowledge on the suffering of people, immigration and emigration.

Out interpersonal empathy sought answers to:

  • Who we are as human beings?
  • Political debates about who we need to be?
  • Philosophical and spiritual exploration we might aspire to be.

Our ideals of Cultural Consciousness require change. 

To move forward and progress with consciousness and self-awareness our ideals of cultural consciousness should include the following.

  • Reasoning – the laws of nature fail to conform to religious doctrine and intuitions.
  • Popular Government.
  • Centrality of Economics in Policies.
  • Consciousness is universal.
  • Secularism.
  • Human Autonomy.
  • Diverse Values 
    • Norms.
    • Lifestyles.
    • Cultural Psychotherapy.
    • Traditions.

MAPPING: 21st Century Enlightenment

ZOOM MAP: CTRL + Mouse Scroll Wheel.
MOVE MAP: Click on map and drag.

RSA Review Series by Gary Crossey.

REVIEW: Network Thinking

posted in: Class Resources | 3

Illustration: Tree of Life by Gary Crossey
Tree Illustration by Gary Crossey

Mapping Complexity

Aristotle is credited as the first person to use the tree method as a classification system. Where information and knowledge are represented with branches that do not touch.

Tree Metaphor

Entire systems of Religious Symbols and Classification System all depend on the symmetry of the tree metaphor. The tree creates a hierarchy, balance, order, and unity for the collective.

Tree of Enlightenment & Life

knowledge_structure_1780

1751 French Encyclopedia published The Tree of Enlightenment. Created by Chrétien Frederic Guillaume Roth. 

Tree of Life

800px-Darwin_Tree_1837

 

 

100 years later in 1859 Darwin published his diagram Tree of Life.  Cataloging the species.

By the millennium the Tree of Life diagram has evolved to include more categories.

Organized Complexity

1948 the paradigm shift begins with the publication of Warren Weaver article Organized Complexity.

A social paradigm shifts is a fundamental change often born from simplicity.

Warren Weaver introduced one fundamental difference. That knowledge is interconnected.

That classification at its most fundamental state, should represent “how one element influences the other”.

Modern Science became aware that elements have a bigger relationship to one another than a hierarchy system could represent.

Universal Structure

2000 Millennium Simulation published the mapping system of millions of galaxies.

18135102_07a58fd89d_o_d

Six year later, Neural Networks of a Mouse was published.  The visual representation of the patterns of a mouse brain.

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Network Thinking

Both mapping systems look very similar. The galaxies represent the largest scale of the Network Thinking mapping system. While the mouse brain represents the smallest scale of the same Network Thinking mapping system.

Network Thinking 

  • Collective Intelligence.
  • Innovation Partnerships.
  • Shared Ethical and Moral Principles.

Non-Structured Leadership

Knowledge is interconnected. Examples of collaboration are everywhere. With  the arrival of Wikipedia rhizomatic (multiple, non-hierarchical) structure. And the many successful open source programming projects that have been successful based on the contribution of the individuals to the good of the collective.

Mind Map of Network Thinking

ZOOM MAP: CTRL + Mouse Scroll Wheel.
MOVE MAP: Click on map and drag.

Resources Mapping Systems

RSA Review Series by Gary Crossey.

REVIEW The Secret Powers of Time

posted in: Class Resources | 3

A child drops out of an American school every 9 seconds. I understand that child. I did everything to avoid attending high-school. But, here I am talking about higher-education. And like many of the kids in today’s education system – lack of interest is not due to poor performance.

The youth of today is different. Research suggests that most 21 year old males have spent 10,000 hours playing video games. That is the same as working a 40 hour job for 250 weeks. Or, working of 40 hours a week for almost 5 years. Most young adults have spent more time playing video games, than it takes to earn a four-year degree. Current research does not include the time spent on pron, and social networking.

While kids may be clocking in hours on gaming. Adults are now equally likely binge watching the new sensational TV show. Hasn’t anyone noticed – a TV show went from 20-45 minutes, to running the entire season in one viewing. We are all digitally rewired. It’s foolish to think that the kids are experiencing this reality alone.

How does any of this new media involvement fit into a traditional classroom? 

FIRST – We need to change the teaching approach. Provide the lesson plans that provide people with the learning experience they deserve.

  • People today want to have control.
  • People do not appreciate being passive.
  • People believe they have a voice.
  • People believe what they say holds value.

The Secret of Powers of Time video does have some awesome and insightful aspects. While, the idea that the young are engaging differently that the adults simply is not true. While the kids may not have other frames of reference to old tech – the high levels of engagement by adults with computer interfaces is often higher than that of the youth.

  • Highest percent of gamer population are women over 40 (Farmville, Scrabble, Bingo).
  • Amazon highest increased customer base are the 65 years plus age group.

While Amazon may be boosting increased sales from the elderly. The youth today seem to be happy enough settling in a night with the streaming TV shows, while saving for a Facebook ready holiday.

graphic_design_blog

RSA Review Series by Gary Crossey.

Adobe 2016 – What 2 Expect?

posted in: Adobe Creative Suite | 0

The 2015 Max conference attracted over 7000 attendees. All excited to hear about the new and future apps and workflows presented by Adobe. While this year did see advancements with the Creative Suite. The real benefit right now is that Adobe software works. The day of work-arounds is long past. Adobe has taken hold of the creative workflow and bought organization to project assets.

So while the new improved tools are impressive – it be more about the freedom to work whenever and wherever that makes Adobe 2016 an exciting year for the creative community.

Adobe Creative Suite Mobile Invasion

Yes, everything now connects. Files can move from one application to another seamlessly – and back again. Adobe says that “creativity has moved away from the desktop. With mobile device creativity can happen wherever and whenever we are inspired.”

Creative Cloud is Connectivity

  • Libraries are now the best method for sharing project assets.
  • Libraries can be share across all apps and with other people.

Mobile Adobe Apps

It is difficult to know if 2016 will be the game changer for the Adobe mobile app market. Adobe have been mining the mobile apps platform for a quite a few years. The Adobe apps are general good – if not well intended.

As a longtime Adobe user – the app development is a very different user experience than the development of Adobe software. The years of watching Photoshop grow into the software that it is today was quite a user experience. What was different back then was that Adobe was loyal to it brand.

The apps development experience as a user is very different. The brand loyalty is gone. The user now downloads an app, becomes experienced with the app, loves the apps – then the apps is discontinued or merged into a new app.

Saying that, I love the array of Adobe Mobile apps – even with all the repackaging and rebranding of the Adobe Mobile Apps there are some really great gems and new approaches to the creative workflow.

Perhaps that’s why Adobe has taken a more flexible approach to launch mobile apps. The hub now is not about the tools – but about user adoption rate. While the mobile devices and new Adobe design apps provide us the user with all the means to leave our desktop and go “anywhere to be creative” for the most of us – that anywhere is generally still in front of our desktop.

Adobe Comp

Adobe Comp is one of the most impressive changes to our workflow for 2016. While earlier versions of Adobe Comp has been quite successful is generating basic design concepts. The new and improved Adobe Comp benefits from shared libraries, advanced hand gestures, and font modifiability.

Improved Adobe Comp features

  • Shared Libraries – this feature has improved right across the Creative Suite.
  • Live font libraries – that now include character styles.

Adobe Comp Hand Gestures

  • Box with Period = Headline.
  • Box with Lines = Filled Body Copy.
  • Box shape = Filled shape.
  • Cross shape = Image Placeholder.

Adobe Capture

Adobe has combined five prior mobile apps into one easy to access app. Adobe Capture now includes:

  1. Color – capture color palette.
  2. Shape – capture vector shapes.
  3. Hue – video coloring.
  4. Brush – create custom brushes.
  5. Pattern – create seamless patterns.

Photoshop Mix

Fun app for combining images.

  • Combine images.
  • Supports multiple layers.
  • Support image color temperatures.  
  • Loads project files into Photoshop.

Photoshop Fix

Photoshop Fix is quite a big deal. Yes, you can now retouch images on your handheld device. Photoshop Fix can even open and handle very large format files.

Photoshop Fix Features 

  • Spot Heal.
  • Patch Tool.
  • Stamp Tool.
  • Lighten / Darken.
  • Vanette
  • Skin Smoothing – knows the difference between skin & eyes.
  • Tooth whitening.
  • Color eyes.

Face Modeling 

The face modeling feature is something once only found in professional photography software. Now, it here to use on your device. Apply pins to face and with liquify tool – everything moves while blending.

  • Face Button
    • Drops pins and make changes to face.  

Lightroom Mobile

Lightroom Mobile now includes the Dehaze tool. Ideal for removing clouds and fog from a photograph. The dehaze feature is located in the adjustment panel.

Photoshop Sketch

New brushes have been included into the Photoshop brush library.

  • New Watercolor Brush.
  • SeamLine to Adobe Comp or the Creative Suite.

Photoshop Software

By the end of 2015 Photoshop has seen many new improvements.

  • Creative Cloud Libraries
  • Add content from document > Add to library.
  • Assets are stored in centralized place.
  • Artboards
  • Multiple iterations of designs in a single document.
  • Special Layer Type.
    • Drag out to cavus.
    • Document guides move.
    • Artboard guides do not move.
    • Duplicate Artboards.
  • Filter Layers panel
    • Select the artboard filter – only showing the layers for active artboard.
  • Handles SVG files directly.
  • Export features  
  • Export layers with scales (new).

Adobe InDesign

Publish your content directly online. Adobe InDesign is jam pack of design tools. Many of those tools happen to be cool animation and interactive tools for creating complying interactive content. However, the design market have been slow to adapt to interactive content. So as a method to hopefully get the design community on board with interactive design – Adobe are now offering a unique URL to publish and promote our online content.

Project Comet

“New tool that is laser focused on everything you need to go from design to prototype in one end to end system. It built from the ground up, so it has breakthrough performance that really changes the way that you work. And it combines design and interactivity for the first time. in one tool that can create an interactive prototype”.

Sign up today to be part of the 2016 launch.

Adobe Fuse CC

Work with 3D Characters. Similar to Poser – Adobe have bought use character development. What is not good about this software? You have characters, clothes, adjustments, lighting, textures, and full integration with Photoshop. Meaning, design changes can be made with 3D model within Photoshop, from position, orientation, lighting, and adjustments. 

The preview version of Adobe Fuse is available for download. I creative table is limitless with Adobe Fuse – I can’t wait to see how this new product line of 3D solutions will develop.

Being Creative is a Choice

The concept of right vs. left brain functions interest peaked in the 1960’s. During which time the idea that the right side of the brain deals with Reason & Vision. While, the left side of the brain could handle Emotion & Language. Today, the Right Left brain functionality is considered completely false.

Now, the concept of Right Hemisphere and Left Hemisphere is in vogue.

Right Hemisphere

“The right hemisphere by contrast yield a world of individual changing, evolving, interconnected, implicit, incarnate living beings with the context to the lived world. In the nature of things never fully graspable. Never perfectly known.”

  • Alertness.
  • Broad.
  • Open.
  • Sustained.
  • Vigilant.
  • Lookout of what is different from our expectations.
  • Understands individuals.
  • Disposition for the living.

Left Hemisphere

“The left hemisphere dependent on detective language in abstraction yields clarity and power to manipulate things that the known, fixed, static, isolated, decontextualized, explicit, general in nature but ultimately lifeless”.

  • Attention to detail.
  • Sharly focused.
  • Narrow.
  • Important and precise.
  • Specifics of what matters to you.
  • Understand Categories.
  • Disposition for the mechanic.
    • Tools and Machines are coded (even for a left handed person).

People who lose use of the Right Hemisphere have “a pathological narrowing of the window of attention”.

Frontal Lobe

  • Inhibit. (Permits you to stand back and observe).
    • Machiavellian (outwit the other party – manipulate).
      • Use and interact with the world for our benefit.
        • Food is the starting point.
    • Emphasize (see individuals from a distance – with interests and values).

For reasoning and imagination you need the use of both hemispheres.

Today’s Pursuit

Today we live in a paradoxical world. The pursuit of happiness is the objective.

  • Pursuit of happiness.
    • Leads to resentment and unhappiness.
    • Explosion of mental illness.
  • Pursuit of Freedom.
    • World that is more monitored by cameras.
    • Subjected to more networks of rules that strangle freedom.
  • Pursuit of Information.
    • Lead to less understanding.

 

ANIMATION: Set Design

Animation time sheet for Asheville Ballet of ALICE

ALICE: Hall of Tears scene from the ballet created by Asheville Dance Company Terpsicorps.

GARY: It is hard to know where I began when creating Hall of Tears scene. There are layers and layers of video footage, frame-by-frame animation, green screen, and special effects. All of which came together to create this awesome stage design.

PLOT: This is the scene where Alice has gotten really large, and is crying. The water is from her tears. For this scene of the ballet. Alice was shot against a green screen – in this case we also had the dancer hold a green screen in front of her (as I just needed her hands and head).

On stage during the live performance – two dancer (tear drops) appear from a slit in the center of the screen.  The video projection repeats on a loop.

Animation Tears

Homemade Special Effects

When creating the water effects for the scene – I wanted the water to appear natural. I wanted a flow, spread, unevenness. All the characteristic of water. What I didn’t want to do – was simply turn to a 3D model to created water. Sure in certain scenes, and for certain effects it was great to turn to CGI to create the effect. However, for a modern ballet in Asheville – the digital media needed to be less polished and refined – the visual installation had its part to play as the backdrop.

Water Reflection

Animated GIF - Rain FallingWater-Reflectations-SHORT-001


Water Highlight – shot with a small hand-held digital camera

Creating Water Effect from rain
water_reflections_highlight
water_flowing_animation
Water Splash Animed GIF

Created by Gary Crossey

The Six Styles to Creative Solutions

INFOGRAPHIC Six styles of Creative Solutions

INFOGRAPHIC

The Six Styles of Creative Solutions 

The Six Styles of Creative Solutions was adapted from Edward De Bono “Six Thinking Hats”.

Visit my Work in Process blog for information on the research and development of the Six Styles of Creative Solutions infographic ProJECT ProFILE.

 

 

 

Graphic Design by Gary Crossey (IrishGuy Graphics)

Website Design for Devices

You can no longer think about website design with considering website design for smartphone users. The adoption rate of people accessing website content via their smartphones is HUGE!

Website Design for SmartPhone Users

The one thing people like better than their smartphone has something to do on with their smartphone. There is no denying it Smartphone users are accessing web content, at an alarming rate.

What are the SEO reporting?

During recently web site traffic reports for my clients. Most of the popular sites are reporting smartphone access rates to be between 53% – 65%. With online trends indicating an increased spending rate with Smartphone users.

How the same site content loads on different devices?

With so many different devices on the market. And people using a broad range of various devices to access the web – it may surprise you what your website experience for each user.

The primary objective for Asheville Super Duper Team Computer Training website design was to be user-friendly. The interface and navigation system needed to run successfully on all devices. The core principles of the Super Duper Team Computer Training is to teach people how to improve their skills with computers.

When considering website design for smartphone users you can quickly see even with the different iPhone models how the content loads differently.

Asheville Website Design Example on iPad Users

The same website content accessed via an iPad provides the user with a different layout – and choices. Both in landscape and portrait view the site content is loading in four columns – similar to the experience of someone accessing the web content via a laptop or desktop computer.

On a computer display, the navigation section spreads across the top of the page. On the smartphone, the navigational buttons stack on top of one another.

The iPad and iPad mini website content load the same on both devices.

The website loads slightly differently on the Blackberry device. In portrait mode, the layout exposes a small amount of the first website publication.

The Google Galaxy Nexus appears to load more of the first post than an of the other smartphones. Both the iPad and Computer load the website content in four column, infinite scrolling homepage.

Asheville Website Design Example on iPhone 6

WEBSITE DESIGN for SmartPhone Users

How does the Website Load on Different Devices?

Asheville Website Design Example on iPhone 3

Website Design for Smartphone Users

 

Website Design for Smartphone Users

Websites on Smartphone

Website design for smartphone users - Blackberry

 

Flipped Classroom

posted in: Class Resources | 0

DEFINE: Flipped Classroom

Unlike the traditional teaching model of introducing new martial during lecture time and assimilating information is reached via homework. The flipped model has students discovering directed new material at home, prior to the lesson plan. And then assimilating the new concepts in class.

Research on learning styles have reported significant learning gains from the flipped classroom approach compared to the traditional teaching method of passive student lectures and algorithmic problem solving.

John Bransford , Ann Brown, and Rodney Cocking defined in their book How People Learn the three parts of learning.

  1. Student most have a deep foundation of factual knowledge.
  2. Student should understand the facts and ideas in the context of a conceptual framework.
  3. Organize knowledge in ways to facilitate retrieval and application.
  • Student gain access to new material outside the classroom.
    • Video
    • Reading
    • Infographics
    • Podcast
    • Slideshow
  • Class Time Assimilating the Information
    • Problem Solving
    • Debates
    • Discussion

Outside Classroom 

Lower Level cognitive work – Knowledge and comprehension.

Inside Classroom

High Level cognitive with the support of peers and instructor.

  1. Application
  2. Analysis
  3. Synthesis
  4. Evaluation

How to teach a Flipped Class

  • Teach cycles are 13 – 15 minutes.
  • Students are able to provide answers anonymously.
    • Instructor interaction and feedback.
  • All students answer conceptual questions.
  • The class has data feedback from the group.

History of the Flipped Class Profile

Walvoord and Anderson first proposed the Flipped Classroom approach for teaching in their 1998 book.

Flipped Classroom

For more information on using the Flipped Classroom method in your classroom contact Gary Crossey admin@irishguy.us.

REVIEW: Infrastructure, Culture, and Process

How to develop a happy teamRecent research shows that 70% of people are unhappy at work. With being “too busy” as the number one reason for their lack of personal fulfillment. People are too busy being busy. Sure, the workplace has changed. The tools are different. The expectations are not the same.

Today’s successful business needs three working components:

  1. Infrastructure.
  2. Culture.
  3. Process.

The components are simple enough in concept. However, in the real business the practice can be a different matter.

What is work?

The first step to building a strong infrastructure is understanding what you and your team do.

Here are a few questions that will help begin building that foundation.

What does work mean to you?

  • How do you work?
  • What tools do you use?
  • Where do you work?

What does work mean to your employee?

  • How do your employees work?
  • What tools do your employees use?
  • Where do your employees work?

RSA Review Series by Gary Crossey.

ADOBE IPAD APPS – Improve Your Creativity

Class Outline

Access Class Outline via the Adobe Education Exchange: Adobe iPad Apps – Improve your Creativity

Adobe iPad Project Samples

Here are samples of projects that were created using Adobe iPad Apps. You may share these samples with your class.

Adobe Voice

Slideshow Voice Over App. Very easy to use and share stories.
The Icon library is a awesome design resource – simply enter a search term and select an icon.
Limit your use of photos – playback is more reliable with icons.

Here are two Adobe Voice Samples.

The Journey of Creativity

How I became the IrishGuy

APP: Adobe Draw

Adobe Draw is an easy to use paint program. With a select of different brushes, layers, and color picker.

Adobe Draw – Interface Prototype

Adobe Draw is a great tool for creating design mockups. This events website prototype was created with Adobe Draw.

Digital Drawing creating using Adobe Draw.

artwork_adobe_draw

APP: Adobe Shape

Capture and convert your line drawing into digital art. For best results draw on plain paper to reduce visual artifacts. Using Adobe Shape camera photography your sketch – and let Adobe Shape do the tracing and converting. High Contrast images have the best results.

Adobe Shape Examples

artwork_created_by_gary_crossey design_by_gary_crossey faces_created_by_gary_crossey

Or use Adobe Shape to capture layout plans or brainstorming sketches.

adobe_shape_created_by_gary_crossey_golden_section

APP: Adobe Photoshop Express

Photoshop Express is a quick and easy way to enhance your photography. With an array of visual effects.

photography_by_gary_crossey

APP: Adobe Photoshop Touch

Adobe Photoshop Touch is a BIG APP. Full of special effects for photography and paint. It all you would expect from a iPad version of Photoshop – but with some really awesome new ways of thinking and working with digital media.

Created by Gary Crossey

Adobe Photoshop Touch is also a great way to capture old documents without using a scanner.

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APP: Adobe Ideas

Adobe Ideas bring the power of layers to the iPad. Making if easy to control complex sketches. The automatic sync to Creative Cloud has been permanently disabled. However, you can still load files to the Creative Cloud, Share the artwork, or email as an attachment.

Here are two examples of digital sketches created using Adobe Ideas.

Both images were created during part of the brainstorming process. The Indian figure uses layers for foreground, midpoint, and background. The figure was sketch out in black outline on one layer. The colors were painted in – almost like paint by number – the black outline created an instant crisp mask. Textures and clothing details were drawn on a third layer. Shadows were draw on the final layer.

The second figure were quick sketches. I found that drawing on the iPad provides precise control. I liked how easy it was to create too different styles to express an expression. In both examples the hands are rendered differently.

Artwork by Gary Crossey - Created with Adobe Ideas

Session Closing

For my Professional Development Session Closing I always recap the class objective. I also include an instant Google Feedback Review. By using Google Forms – I have everyone complete an instant feedback form. Here is the Feedback form that I use for this class. The results of the form are shared with everyone in the class. Any unsolved problems or misunderstandings can normally be handled here. Or, it can simply be a strong visual way of recapping the elements of the class outline. For me, I use the group results to guide me though the closing statement – it’s my cheat sheet!

Some information about Feedback Forms

People love to fill in feedback forms! As much as most people love doing their taxes. 

Make them fun and engaging. If you want real results from your Feedback Forms you need to connect with your participants. Use a variety of quick fire questions. Share the results with all the class. Any questions or problem areas can be reinforced at this time.

 

 

 

BANNER ADS: Advertising

Banner Ads

Reach your target market using website banner ads. Yes – someone has to design all those website banner ads. Here is a small collection of website marketing ads that I have created for Asheville Tech Community College, OurVoice, and Heville Social Network.

Graphic Design created for Asheville AB Tech Classes

Banner ads for online class

Graphic Design created for OurVoice Asheville

Some website banners work well by being simple, clean, and easy to understand.

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Ads for Heville Social Networking Websites

The Heville Social Networking website ran ads on various websites. Depending on the website that Heville ran their banner ad designs – they wanted either still or animated banner ads. These three banner ads are examples of some of the still ads created for Heville.

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Sign up for Membership Ads

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Ads to announce

Announcing the launch of a new social networking website .ontheway

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betterday

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About Ad_Newsletter

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BANNER-NewDomainNameSM

Banner Ad by Asheville Gary Crossey for IrishGuy Banner ad by Gary Crossey Asheville IrishGuy

ANIMATION: Without Art

posted in: Animation, Zillion Projects | 1

Longer Version

“How Extraordinary! I thought they would care for nothing but your art”

The opening animated text sequence is a line wonderful line from The Picture of Dorian Gray. Oscar Wilde has always inspired me. I was in my early teens when I read The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde (for the first time). Alongside the three books written by Lord Alfred Douglas. It seemed fitting to incorporate Oscar Wilde into my first public collaboration.

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Frame-by-Frame Animation

Frame-by-frame animation created by Gary Crossey

Most of the content for the installation was frame-by-frame animation. Using 29 frame per second – I created a still images in Photoshop. One image for each frame.

Frame-by-frame animation created by Gary Crosesy

THE MATH:

29 frames = 1 Second
1740 frames = 1 Minute
Installation 45 minutes = 78300 frames.

This animation project taught me two very precise things about myself.

  1. I am very fast with Photoshop.
  2. I am very patient.

The frame-by-frame animation took hundreds of hours to create. For most scenes I had at least seven active layers in Photoshop. Each layer controlling the frame-by frame animation for one element. Providing me control over seven elements to animate for each frame.

Dancing Figures

The nude dancing figures was my artistic expression to how I was feeling. This was my first BIG installation – I did feel somewhat exposed. The opening still lady-figure was my state of artistic focus to command inspiration from feeling exposed.

The dancing figures began as pencil sketches. I then photographed the sketches. And refined the sketches with Adobe Illustrator. I completely lost count how many female figures I sketched, certainly enough for the chorus line animation that they became part of.  

Special Text Effect

The frame-by-frame animation white and orange text effect are extracts from my of Essay of Aubrey Beardsley. Beardsley defined the art of graphic design and print making. While Beardsley provocative nature of penmanship was even disliked by Oscar Wilde. Beardsley unique ink and pen images are the visual definition and origin of graphic design. 

Patterned his Style”.

Beginning my public statement to accept the fear of being exposed. And to trust my artists expression to create. The frame-by-frame animation text sequence begins the dialog. 

CREDITS:
Photography – Bart Peeters.
Motion Graphics, Animation, and Typesetting – Gary Crossey.

BRANDING: Ballet

Branding Asheville Ballet Season

Video Editing Project Asheville - By Gary Crossey for Irishguy.

Poster Design and Branding:  solely by Brian Jones.

Video Project for Asheville Ballet

 

VIDEO PRODUCTION

Video Editing projects are such fun when you have creative footage to work with. For Terpsicorps – Asheville Ballet promotional video there was so much beautiful footage that I could have used.

The art of video editing is knowing which shots will tell the story best. I had great fun getting to film dancers. Capturing the dancer’s motion and creativity. And then bringing all of those series of images to the video editing part – filtering and combining the storyline.

Due to the marketing masterminding of Brian Jones (Branding Creator for ALICE) the promotional video for The Mad Hatters Ball was a huge success.

The video was both showcased on local TV news and public access TV. Published by Mountain Xpress newspaper. And featured as bonus footage during the online interview with Asheville Citizen-Times – and that was just for the preview.

Video Promotion Script

Heather (the creator/visual direction of Alice and director of Terpsicorps) – “I had definite ideas in my head of what I wanted to see come to life, and I sat down and wrote out a bunch of storyboards and pictures and things that I wanted. Having absolutely no idea whether any that was possible. I guess all that comes down to see what happens and meeting these people who can make it happen”.

Craig (Advanced tech, camera work, creative continuity )– “Bringing all these assets together is a gargantuan task requiring a lot of organization and production. Alice is a very complex project. We’re are going to be utilizing no less than four video projectors and six screens”.

Gary (Digital Media Artist, Animator, and Special Effects)  – “Some of the approaches that we’ve adopted is to use live footage shot in the Asheville area. And then apply different special effects and animation techniques. Using Adobe Flash, Adobe After Effects, and Adobe Premiere to create the content that we need for the show. Alice is a prime example of where all of our skills come together to create a beautiful project”.

More Information

Postcard: Design & Photography

Hiring a Professional Asheville Photographer

Asheville Direct Mail Created by Gary Crossey - Postcard design

Product Photography & Direct Mail Sample

I spent “days” photographing this stone collection. Thankfully, as a professional Asheville photographer; I love to work with difficult objects. The entire Product line are shiny stones. Yes, they reflect everything. Some of the spheres can reflect the entire room at once. And, I think I may have said it before, they shine, shine, shine, and reflect.

The clients product line of rare and collectible stones was not easily subjects. I used every photography studio trick to capture the unusual collection. At which time I was thankful for having spent 100’s of hours in my University Photo Studio ~ practicing for the day I’d need these photographic techniques.

Without my professional experience of studying light and space and their relationship to reflective surfaces, I could not have delivered a full catalog collection to my client. To my delight the client used all of the photographs I created for the series.

The product photography was quickly and successfully integrated into the company branding, direct mail, signage, business cards, website design, trade show and online promotions.

Visit the Shiny Stone: Product Photography Samples Collection – to review the product photography for the catalogs, event programs, magazines, flyers, websites, online stores, and email marketing.

POSTER DESIGN: Modern

BRANDING: Create Signage.

RETRO POSTER DESIGN.
Posters have a history of connecting people. Unlike other forms of graphic design. Posters have a directness, accessibility, and simplicity. When asked to design a poster. I begin from a creative place of too many choices.

Finding the Graphic Design Focus

When I design I have to first discover a focus. For the Honor Night poster I wanted to design a poster that I connected with. I wanted the graphic design and typography to communicate something about me the designer, as well as reach everyone. I wanted to create a meaningful reference to what school had meant to me.

This retro poster design wasn’t for any Honors Night, this was my own Honors Night. For me, the poster had to reflect my school experience.

Retro Poster Design by Gary Crossey

At school I enrolled for every art history class that was available. While all of the art movements provided me with interest and inspiration. It was the Dada art (or anti-art) movement that resonated with me the most.

Unlike prior art movements. Dada was more a mindset, than a single art style. The Dada artists dedication to questioning everything about artistic expression resounded with creative approach. The Dada movement did borrow their visual and technical vocabulary from Futurists. Especially those contributions to visual communication and advertising.

Dada made the poster the central tool for introducing new and bold graphic design aesthetic. The Dadaists, like the Futurists had a typographical revolution. With the typeface being the medium. The Dada artist isolated the graphic values of a typeface. While providing an independence meaning to the shape of the letters that was different from the transmitted textual meaning.

The typographical revolution brought about an innovative use of typography. Where the artist questions every adjust of the design. From adjustments to the kerning (space between characters). To refining the leading (space between successive lines of type). To the use of negative white space. Allowing the layout to flow vertically, horizontally, and diagonally.

The Dada art movement enriched creative libration to the collective arts. Impacting painting, collage, sculpture, poetry, performance, photography, and graphic design. The collective spirit of Dadaism parallels directly with my creativity as a multimedia artist.

Drawing Creative Inspiration for Retro Poster Design

One of the most recognizable designs from the Dada era is that of the cover design for Veshch (Object). 1922 Berlin anti government booklet. Veshch introduced using an array of different typefaces and printing on colored paper to liven up the design.

100 years later.  The retro poster design remains distinctive and modern. The design aim is to break the reader free of the traditional concept of typography.

Today the reader is now expected to explore the shape and form of text. Without having to decipher the meaning of the content. Every major brand depends on reader recognize. With shape being the first value a reader will recognize. Follow by color, and third the text.

For more info on the Dada Art Movement.

CD COVER: Graphic Design Sample

CD Cover Design for Asheville Cookie La Rue

CD Cover Design. Sure it has been awhile since anyone has requested a CD cover . But, back in the day, CD’s artwork requests were quite popular. At that time, everyone wanted a CD, everyone had a CD, some people even wear CD’s as clothing accessories.

While the CD cover never did reach the same artistic  heights as the LP cover. The  CD was the last step before switching our media to an online format. Where every song, book, or show feels the same in your hand. Same weight, same shape, same.

When Asheville recording star Cookie La Rue hit me up again for more free design services.  At first, I said “NO”. I actually kept repeating “no, no, no…” and there it is I ended up with this creation.

Granted at the time, most everyone had already stopped using CD’s. Most people had even stopped using Napster. But, Cookie wanted the CD format. And that is what she got!

CD Cover Design by Gary Crossey

The CD cover design of Folkin’ with you was the Blue Prior of Cookie La Rue recordings. Keeping with the  theme, I drew my inspiration from Joni Mitchell – Blue LP design.

CD Insert

CD Cover Design Asheville Graphic Design Example - CD insert

I began the CD Cover Project as I do with many projects. I began with my camera. Shooting photos of Cookie La Rue was not pleasant. There was a huge amount of Photoshop skills need to blur out most of Cookie face – I then created the CD cover following the tone and layout as Blue LP did.

To my complete surprise – the CD release party was hughly popular. The CD went on to 2nd and 3rd reprint.

Photography: Gary Crossey.
Graphic Design: Gary Crossey.
Digital Artwork: Gary Crossey.

Be sure to check out the many other Cookie La Rue design projects.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Punk Portrait

Punk Portrait Photography

Punk Portrait Photography of Tasty Tim.

Tasty Tim – Needledust (London) Photography and Graphic Design by Gary Crossey.

What a great guy to work with. Tasty Tim made every shot count, and very easy to capture. I shot the photos in some nightclub in London. Boy George was spinning, Tasty Tim was my host – and Mark Moore had put me on the guest list as photographer. Many corners got turned that night.

Asheville PHotography

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BUSINESS CARD: Asheville

 

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Asheville Business Card Design

Working with the Asheville Salon is always fun. For the Asheville Salon Business Card both Danielle and Greg wanted a business card they could feel proud about handing out.

The graphic design for the Asheville Salon business card design is a true reflection of the Asheville Salon branding guidelines.

Personalize your Business Card

Asheville Salon wanted to way to personalize their business card – without distracting from the brand. The graphic design solution that I presented – was to let each person choice their own element to add to their business card.

For Danielle, she added her own hand-drawn sketch of an owl that Danielle has a connected to. While Greg choice to use a sketch of a flower that Danielle also drew.

As the graphic designer for Asheville salon I am very pleased to include Danielle’s artwork. The sketches are  an extension of Danielle’s creative self – the same creative self that Danielle brings to each of the hair styles that she creates.

LOGO DESIGN: Web Design

3D Logo Design

There was quite an in-depth creative process in bringing the Irish Guy Website Design, Programming, and SEO Services 3D Logo Design forward. The concept of the logo design was quite instant. I instinctively comprehended what I wanted. Being the client and designer for this design does make that transition easier.

However, making sense of a concept takes steps. Bringing that original abstract idea to fruition requires a process. As the graphic designer I have to move with the design. While other graphic designers are comfortable creating design from clip art - I prefer to create my own visuals. I like to explore the visual aspects of a design. Discovering the layers of detail that and visual aspects of shape, tone, hue, and the combination of all.

Some logo designs can be quite instant - while other logo designs can take longer. For the Irish Guy Productions I remained with the design - sketching out ideas of some of the different visual aspects that I wanted the logo to have.

Making sense of a concept

3D Logo Design - Asheville Graphic Design Sample - from concept to design

3D Logo Design – Background

During the Branding Development for Irish Guy Website Design, Programming and SEO Services the visual guidelines were established. The color palette - Pink, Deep Purple, Rich Reds, Light Gray, and Black was firm! No green or blue.

I typically begin my graphic design projects with black and white sketches. Once the graphic design aspects of the design are strong enough - color is added. It was exciting for me to approach a logo design project from a different direction. Though somewhat nervous too - as graphic designers we train ourselves to follow creative processes. While altering the process can bring about creative insight - the creations may not reach your target.

The Irish Guy logo brief was simple enough. "Draw inspiration from traditional Irish visual. Stay away from the tourist ideas of Ireland (Green, Shamrock, Rainbow, and Leprechauns)". Personally, I am quite fond of Leprechauns and Garden Gnomes in general.

Digital Sketches – Click thumbnail to Enlarge

Drawing inspiration for the Irish Triple Spiral

The Irish Triskele or Triple Spiral has been of great inspiration to me. And has been a part of Irish tradition for as long as anyone can recall. What I love about the Triple Spiral symbol is that depending on who you ask, you may get a different definition of what the three spirals represent. There is something special about a symbol that can represent what you want it to - and still be appreciated and valued by all.

The one understanding that is consistent is that the Triskele design comprises of three similar elements that come together to from one. Irish Guy Website Design, Programming, and SEO Service also share the responsibilities of three equal services that come together to form one uniformed web solution.  And, so the digital sketching began.

Irish Guy Logo in Action

Asheville 3D Logo Design for Website Design and SEO Firm

Logo Animation 1

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Logo Animation 2

Asheville 3D Logo Design created by IrishGuy Graphic Design

Logo Animation 3

3d Logo Design for Asheville Website Design, Programming, and SEO Service

DESIGN: SEO Icon

Icon Design

Icon Designs are fun to create. Fun to make and fun to use. There are endless images to enjoy. With countless joyous treatments. 

SEO Icons

The SEO icons created for the Asheville Web Design firm IrishGuy.info.

Asheville Icon Desing created by Gary Crossey for IrishGuy

Icon Design for IrishGuy website design and seo services

Asheville Graphic Design Example - Icon Design for Website Design and SEO service business

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My Icon Design Process

I manage my design project with three easy steps.

  1. Discover.
  2. Design.
  3. Distribute.

ICON DESIGN – Discovery Stage.

Successful design projects begin with research and discovery. Unlike other items of graphic design. The Icon has to bashfully obey two functions.

Functions of an Icon.

  1. Be able to stand out alone.
  2. Remain part of the group.

The modern icon is not a one trick pony. A thoughtful icon will both visual unite and stand solo. The aesthetics of the icon design makes it engaging. Icons rarely function alone. Icons work harmoniously within a larger design system.

My design research begins by considering the audience. Who might use these icons? If I am designing for a company in the UK or Europe, I may reconsider some of the case symbols. Establish cultural and traditional visual guidelines.

ICON DESIGN – Design Stage.

The design problem of creating icons. An Icon has to stand apart while being the same. Keeping icons simple and easy to understand is essential.Overly complicated icons are difficult to grasp. Limit how many design elements to include.

Icon Design Perspective

Icons observation. Any which way. It is a good idea to keep your icon collection in the same Perspective. If you have your icon positioned at a particular angle – maintain the same angle for the icon collection.  Keeping a consistent viewpoint will help establish a consistent icon set style.

Universal Icon design mistakes.

  • To make elements or unnecessary elements.
  • Unnecessary styling – perspective, bevel, shadows.
  • Misunderstood metaphors.
  • Misused national, international, and social characteristics.
  • Use text in icons.
  • Including interface features in icons.
  • Insufficient individuality between icons.
  • Lack of aesthetic unity.

ICON DESIGN – Implementation Stage.

The final and most important part of the design process. Does it work? The implementation stage is more than just getting the design out there. During the Implementation Stage, I am looking for ways to improve and strengthen the design message.

Questions I ask

  • Are the icon design consistent?
  • Do the colors come together as a unit?
  • Do the icons look like they belong together?
  • If used: are the reflections, shadows, and lighting consistent?
  • Do the icons scale correctly?

Once I am happy with my answers, I then test the icons on real people. I listen carefully to feedback. And value the power of observation . I am always looking for that problematic icon – the one the everyone misunderstands.  For the icon collection success all of the icons have to work together as one language.

 

ANIMATION: Frame-by-Frame

posted in: Animation, Zillion Projects | 0

Sometimes, I get to do more than Graphic Design services in Asheville. The Frame-by-Frame animation was created and showcased in the Royal Palace in Lakenhal, Belgium. Using Adobe Photoshop to create frame-by-frame animations may not be the fastest way to create content. However, the look and feel that I was able to achieve does add the personality that I was after.

Creating the Clay Lady Animation

The Clay Lady was the first of a series of short animations created for a multimedia installation. Bart Peeters had created a series of beautiful photographs of people either painted in covered in clay.

The images of the clay lady really interested me. The shape of the body, the lack of expression on the face. Making the animations felt like a road of self discovery.

Frame-by-Frame Animation Contact Sheet

The single frames of the animation also have a certain amount of interest. When viewing the single frame in the file browser – I like the color changes and the movement that the image create. Continued

BLOG: Logo Design Timeline

How long does it take to build an International brand?

It might surprise you to see the historical timeline of your favorite brands.


Hope you enjoy the interactive timeline – over time I will add more content to the timeline and informational table. If you would like to add information to the either the table or timeline please email admin@irishguy.us.

Year  Business  Logo Logo has changed Name Change Still in Business
1862  Guinness 1862_Guinness_01  6 times.
1st version.
 Yes
1865  Olympics  xx  39 times.  Yes
1870  Mitsubishi  Logo Design Changed 3 times.
1st version.
 Yes
1875  Nestle  xx  Yes
1875  Bass  xx  Yes
1876  John Deere  xx 8 times  Yes
1886  Johnson & Johnson  xx  Yes
1887  Coca-Cola  xx  10+ times/  Yes
1892 General Electric  xx  Yes
1896  Prudential  xx  Yes
1898  Michelin  xx  Yes
1900  Shell  xx  7+times.  Yes
1900  Nabisco  xx  Yes
1903  Ford  xx  Yes
1905  Rolls-Royce  xx  Yes
1911 Mercedes-Benz  xx  7+ times  Yes
1926 Greyhound  xx  Yes
1933 London Underground  xx  Yes
1938 Volkswagen  xx  7+ times.  Yes
1943 IEKA  xx  Yes
1951 CSB  xx  Yes
1955 Guinness 1955_Guinness_02  6 times.
2nd version.
Yes
1956 NBC  xx Yes
1960 Chase Manhattan  xx JP Morgan Chase Bank Yes
1960 IBM  xx  7+ times. Yes
1960 International Paper  xx Yes
1960 Motorola  xx Yes
1961  UPS  xx Yes
1961  Weyerhaeuser  xx
1962  McDonald’s  xx Yes
1962  General Foods  xx The corporate name was dropped in 1995 No
1964 Mitsubishi  1964_Mitsubishi_02 Changed 3 times.
2nd version.
Yes
1965 Mobil  xx  Merged in 1999 with Exxon to form  ExxonMobil Yes
1966 Dinners Club  xx Yes
1966 Exxon  xx Merged in 1999 with Mobil to form  ExxonMobil Yes
1967 Westinghouse  xx  Westinghouse Electric Corporation Yes
1967 Metropolitan Life  xx MetLife, Inc Yes
1968 Guinness 1968_Guinness_03  6 times.
3rd version.
Yes
1971 L’Eggs  xx Yes – The egg packaging was one of the most successful product launches of all time. The brand no longer use the plastic egg as it is seen as wasteful. Yes
1971 Eastman Kodak  xx Yes
1971 Nike  xx  3+ times Yes
1971 Quarter Oats  xx Yes
1973 Atari  xx Yes
1973 Merrill Lynch  xx Yes
1974 United Way  xx Yes
1974 Dunkin Donuts  xx Yes
1975 I Love NY  xx Yes
1976 Citicorp  xx Yes
1976 United Way  xx Yes
1977 Apple  xx  4+ times. Yes
1979 Transamerica  xx Yes
1981 Texaco  xx Yes
1984 AT&T  xx Yes
1995 Guinness  1995_Guinness_04 6 times.
4 th version.
Yes
1997 Guinness  1997_Guinness_05  6 times.
5 th version.
Yes
2005 Guinness  2005_Guinness_06 6 times.
6 th version.
Yes
2005 Mitsubishi  Logo Design Changed 3 times.
3rd version.
Yes

http://www.hongkiat.com/blog/logo-evolution/

TUTORIAL: Use Adobe Draw to Create App Prototypes

IMG_0885Adobe Draw is one of Adobe’s latest mobile app. Adobe Draw is designed for the creative community to get away from having to draw with a mouse. I for one love sketching my visual ideas on my iPad.

Here are the steps I used to create quick app prototypes using Adobe Draw.

STEP 1. Capture template files

The first step for creating our app prototypes will begin online.

IMG_0878Use the browser of your choice and go to www.interfacesketch.com.

 

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2. Locate the template your need

Scroll to the template that you wish to use. Here four examples – there are many choices.

3. Capture the Template

Many of the templates have links to PDF documents. Position your template to fill as much of the screen as possible. When viewing PDF documents on a iPad – all of the PDF controls will be present on the screen while you navigate the PDF document. However, if you remove your hands and pause – all the PDF controls will disappear – making for an cleaner template.

TO CAPTURE: One the iPad. Press the HOME Key and the Side Button at the same time. The screen will do a quick flip. The screen shot is saved directly to the iPad camera roll.

4. Launch Adobe Draw

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Launch Adobe Illustrator Draw. For the best results use a stylist of your choice to draw directly on your iPad to create quick app prototypes.

IMG_08875. Create a New Project

To create a new project simply click the + sign on the sidebar.

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6. Work in Full Screen mode

Tap one time on the project window. The project will go to full screen. Three items that are worth noting.

  • Drawing Tool Bar.
  • Top left Menu Bar
  • Top right Close command.

IMG_0889Drawing Tool Bar.

The Adobe Drawing Tool Bar is pretty simple – with five options.

  1. Brush Selection.
  2. Brush Size.
  3. Opacity of Color.
  4. Color Selection.
  5. Layers.

Top left Menu Bar

The top left menu has a few tools that are very different from one another.

  1. Export Button – access to a wide range of sharing apps.
  2. Shapes – Add free clip art.
  3. Lines Tool – Draw precise lines.
  4. Full Screen button to hide menus.

Top right Close command.

Press the close button to return back to the Adobe Draw projects.

  1. Close Button.

7. Add Device Template

To add the Device Template that were captured during step 3.

  • Click the Layers Icon.

IMG_08918. Choice the source for your photo

Images can be imported into Adobe Draw from many different sources. For our project – the screen shots that were captured automatically save to Images On my iPad. 

  • Click On my iPad 

9. Select

Navigate to the Camera Roll to locate the captured screen shoots.

IMG_0892

 

10. Locate Device Template Image

Locate the Device Template image of your choice.

IMG_0893

 

 

The template image will load into place. You will notice that the template screen capture includes the iPad frame. This can be trimmed off prior to importing into Adobe Draw. I don’t mind the frame being there and am happy to save myself the step of editing the screen captures. IMG_0894

11. Select a Drawing Layer

To begin drawing be sure that you have the drawing layer selected.

  • Clip the layer icon.
  • Click on the upper layer to select.

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12. Select your Brush Style

On the right sidebar – click the brush icon to open the brush palette.

Experiment with the different brush styles to find a look that you like.

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13. Choice Your Brush Color

Yes Adobe Draw has a vast color palette. Simple click on the color button.

IMG_0897

14. Zoom around your work space

Adobe Edge supports all the basic iPad gestures.

  • ZOOM – Yes two finger pinch will zoom into your work.
  • UNDO – Two fingers ran quickly from the right to the left

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15. Draw your Design

Using a stylish of your choice begin to draw your app prototypes.

IMG_0899

16. Use Color to Highlight Features

The purpose of creating the prototype is to create quick design ideas – often working in black in white will be enough for most basic designs. However, color may be used to help highlight app layout and functions.

In the example below the green bar highlights where the app ad banner will run.

IMG_0900

17. Add Detail to App Prototype

Add as much detail to your App Prototypes as you need.

IMG_0901

18. Export your work.

Using the share button – located on the top right menu.

  • Click Share Button
  • Choice which service you which to use to share.
  • Follow on screen instructions to complete your share.

IMG_0889

REVIEW: SAMR Model for Teaching

Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, and Redefinition 

The SAMR Model was developed by Ruben Puentedura with the objective to provide educators with a framework to integrate technology into  the modern workflow. Puentedura understood the shift has happened. We are now working with tech tools that do different tasks than we did before computers.

Many of the first computer app made our tasks either easier or faster. With filing and storing data being the top objective. For many experienced Office user, and the few past Word-prefect users – Saving and Storage was one of the most important operator functions.

With my Google Drive Professional Development sessions many experienced users love the auto save feature. The easy search and find makes losing a document even more difficult.

Like me, some of the adults I work with began keyboarding on a manual typewriter. Typing is one skill that I acquire when I was young that I use everyday. For computer power users – it is important not having to look at your keyboard and that all your fingers work equally.

My typewriting skills transferred directly to the computer. My typesetting skills transferred too, making the Word easy to grasp. Word mirrored the typewriter – right to the paper. Now, with Google Docs the working environment makes another shift.

  • Typewriter
  • Word
  • Google Docs

For experienced computer users  (and typist) Google Docs appears to be the same. However there are difference.

Google have resolved some of the basic challenges using the computer.

  • Auto Save – no more losing important data.
  • Auto Backup – retrieve past data.
  • Auto Cloud Storage – no more losing files or misplacing files.

No More having to Save Documents

Save SAVE SAVE save – yes we have all lost a document from not saving. Now with Google Doc, its automatic saving. And now rather than spending time figuring out how to save, and where to save to. Google Drive offers a different approach – just use the app – let the app take care of the storage and saving.

Google Documents are living Documents

Another BIG shift with document creation. The document now lives. The document is accessible, changeable, and developing. Unlike the objective that both the typewriter and Word took – a document was created – then sent out to the world. And that message was normally sent out to the world on some form of (you got it) paper! The out come is final. Sure you can recycle the paper – but the message remains the same.

Google Docs has changes this idea that documents are complete. But rather that documents are never done. That the information on the document can be updated. And the people who have access to the document will have the most current version.

It actually sounds more difficult than it is. Think of it this way:

  • You have a club website.
  • You want to post the rules and conditions of your club on the website.
  • You have a Google Doc with the rules and conditions.
  • You embed the Google Doc to your website – to populate the Rules and Conditions.
  • Amendments to the Rules and Conditions are made to the Google Doc – website automatically updates.

Having Google Docs populate content to a website is only one example of how live content can be used. The amount of time that is saved when important information can be updated in one document and the different sources using the content are automatically updated. That’s one interesting feature of Google Doc that makes it different from what Word Processing give us the ability to do.

Google As a Group

The Google as a Group part of Google docs has been the most difficult for me to get people to adopt. Personally, I love some of the editing tools. So, I do wish the interface was more interesting, and I could format like I could in Office. Office did have awesome document styles.

Google Comments

What Google Docs does have are COMMENTS – may not seem like a big deal, but it is. For the experienced Word Processor – this is the time you might change your typeset to red and start editing a document. This is where you need to STOP.

Live documents need fast edits, with comments as the development area. Yes COMMENTS are king for all Google Doc editing.

  • Comments can be notes to yourself.
  • Comments can be notes to research a word.
  • Comment to Proof Check.
  • Comments could be a question to your team – Who is a vegan on staff?  Whatever!

I like to use comments as my document to do list. As I compose an outline I use the comments to plot out areas that I need to research, or may need help with. Like I said, my Document To Do List. 

Document To Do List

Even if I am working alone the comments provide a quick method to highlight a task – without having to leave the document. When writing, I use the comments a great deal. Firstly, I use the comments to take quick notes (typically questions) that I can come back to. Comments are easy to add, without losing your pace.

At the beginning of the a writing project my Google doc tends to be full of comments. Most of the comments require some fact checking and research. For me the comments represent my unresolved concerns for the document. My goal is to publish the document – when all of my comments have been resolved. The resolving of the comments tells me my document has been worked correctly and to my satisfaction. Saying that – you got to firm on your questions – do add tasks to your comments that you know you will not do. Or add comments to information you already know.

How Comments Impact Other

When using Comments as your Document To Do List it makes it easy for other team members to help. No more having to email to “EVERYONE” when you can simply add a comment to the shared document that anyone (who has the information) can update, and resolve the comment.

EXAMPLE: Notice for a Staff Meeting – Comment: Room Number?
Any one with the information can update the document and resolve the comment.

Again, this is a simple example of how to use comment to resolve simple questions. However the transaction is actually more complex. In the past, to confirm the room number of an event you would have to email, “someone” or “everyone” for the information. While there are a few different methods in email, for most people needing to discover a simple bit of information it normally plays out something like:

  • Email one personal directly. Wait on replay. Mostly able to resolve.
  • Email one personal directly. They don’t reply.
  • Email everyone – everyone replies – with many “out of office notices”

In all of those responses I am provided with the information I need. However, by the time I sent the email and the time the response was received I may have moved onto another task. GUILTY! This is where the problem becomes recognizable. Transferring that “small” amount of data from one place to another has now become a TASK!

STOP THERE! Google Docs has changes all of that. You need to know “anything” – select the word that your question is about an right-click > Add Comment.

EXAMPLE: Comment: What is the Room Number?

Be an Active User

Another difference with live documents – you need to be AN ACTIVE USER. Using the Comments system – we are faced with the Room Number Question. The same question when handled via email requires the exchange of information, followed with the processing, collecting and distributing of the received information. In our example, that information or data is the Room number.

The Old Information Workflow

Email Request for Room Number > Reply from Email has Room Number > Copy Room Number > Locate Document that needs the information > Paste the information into the document > Save the document.

The New Information Workflow

The active user understands that today workflow requires everyone’s involvement. For our simple example of obtaining the correct room number. The Workflow simply requires a comment to be posted that anyone with access to the document can resolve and update the document. The key to the success of the active user is the updating of the document directly and in doing sure is able to resolve the concern posed by the comment.

EXAMPLE: Comment: What is the Room Number? > Active User updates the document with the correct room number and resolves the comment, adding any additional information to the comment to support the comment being resolved.

SAMR Model for Teaching

The SAMR Model for Teaching is certainly a method that I support. I do believe that skills need to be transferable. And that people learn best when they can relate digital skills with their real world skills. While also understanding that the digital shift has happened in that the digital apps are not simply a mirror of past tools. Digital tools are now available that reshape the way we work and play.

Live documents are real. Working in teams – real too. Being able to adapt your skills in a every changing workflow and work requirements? The SAMR Model can help adult learners make a deeper connection with digital tools. Providing useful new approaches on how to work with and understand data and design.

RSA Review Series by Gary Crossey.

BRANDING: Creating an identity

posted in: Branding | 0

Identity Branding Package

Providing my clients with the ability to express their business individuality through a well planned Identity Branding Package.

Branding that connects. The success of all businesses, not-for-profits, groups, communities, and organizations is dependent on brand recognition and online perception.

What is Branding?

A brand is the public’s expectations based on the promises provided. The brand is the big idea of what your company, organization, or community present. Brand Identity communicates, supports, expresses, visualizes, and synthesizes the customer perception.

Why is having a healthy Branding important?

Research shows that people fall in love with brands. People are loyal to their brands. People tend to trust their brands, and honestly believe that their brand is better, if not the best.

A strong brand stands out. Even in a densely populated marketplace a strong brand is the differentiation. Brand awareness builds businesses. The future success of business, not-for-profit, group, community, or organization is their brand reputation. Brand identity endure.  Continued

REVIEW: Changing Education Paradigms

Sir Ken Robinson.
Changing Eduction Paradigms. 

Education in the 21st Century is not fast enough. With the quick pace of developing technologies it is difficult to teach children the skills needed for an unknown future economy. The idea that doing well at school will lead to successful employment has become more a nostalgic notion. While a degree may be a requirement in some professionals, it certainly doesn’t guarantee employment.

Research has shown that with increased testing students lose interest. Tests are boring. Professional Adult Development does not have to boring. Everyone learns more when they are focused and engaged.

RSA Review Series by Gary Crossey.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Into the Light

vivian-faces

While I do love the first portrait of Vivian. The blue of her eyes. The void of makeup. The natural beauty.

Into the Light

Photography Asheville Head Shot

“Gary Crossey came by yesterday for an impromptu photo shoot. I was completely unprepared and yet the pictures turned out gorgeous. Photographer and skills! I can’t wait to see the other ones. I call this one Into the Light” – Vivian 

 

 

BRANDING: Asheville

Asheville Logo Design - By Gary Crossey (AKA. IrishGuy)

BRANDING

Asheville Salon create beautiful, stylish, and manageable hair. Their hairstyles have a huge curbside appeal - that range from everyday wear, to formal, to high-fashion art form. 

When Danielle and Greg approached me to develop their brand and logo design for their downtown Asheville hair salon. They asked that their business name be user-friendly and have a strong search engine appeal. 

Asheville Salon

After much local SEO and market research I proposed Asheville Salon as the brand name. 

Asheville Salon is both rememberable and rankable.

Asheville Salon Logo designed by Gary Crossey

 

Stage One

Logo Design by Gary Crossey aka. Gary Crossey