100 Things/ Map Inspiration

100 Things/ Poster Inspiration

100 Things/ Leaflet Inspiration

100 Things/ Newspaper Inspiration

Lecture 9: Media Specificity

Medium - the material or technical means of artistic expression, media being the plural of medium, the first use of the term media was in 1927

Media also refers to the communication channels that are used to carry information

Everything we do as designers and artists is determined by the media we use to deliver the expression, media determines how something works and operates. ‘Media’ is the humans attempt to extend ourselves beyond our nature physical and mental limitations.

Different media have a different set of defined characteristics that influences there aesthetic

The use of medium theory can be used to explain and compare the differences between certain media, such as text based media theory being used to describe how cinematic theory works. (Eisenstein)

The human will allows provide the force which influences and affects how a particular media works and functions.

PowerPoint is an example of how media affects the information being delivered, it was originally designed for use with sales pitches however it used by many lectures within universities to deliver information within a lecture, often to work in sync with the spoken word of the lecturer. The use of PowerPoint within lectures has also resulted in a shift in the way information in delivered within lectures, traditionally information was delivered in large ’chunks’ similar to that of paragraphs of text within a book however no information is bullet pointed and bite sized

What are we as humans? We are biological creature with close connections to the animal world. At a basic physical level, we are part of the natural interconnection of physical and chemical phenomena and obey the laws of necessity. However in spite of the limitations of this condition our highly developed cerebral cortex allows us to think our way out. If we cant reach it we pick up a stick and if we cant outfight it we sharpen a stone axe.

The Homo Sapien - A large brain, most sensory organs are forward facing and towards to top of the body, Long throat, small mouth with flexible tongue and lips. An upright stance that frees arms, hands with mobile thumbs and fingers.

Media and how we consume it is related to our shape as human beings, media is often an extension of what we already have, such as the first tools first invented, the axe - an extension of the arm and glasses (telescope) - am enhancement of the eyes, extending and broaden the ability of our natural sight

These extensions are not just lenses either the also come in other forms such as radio telescopes. Electricity is also a reflection of out central nervous system. These extensions often relate to our five key senses.

Technology has long aimed to replicate what we already have al human beings but enhance it and make it better. The human body is unable to sense many potentially harmful substances in the air we breath. NASA has built an electronic nose to smell what the astronauts can’t. Inspired by the human olfactory system, the electronic nose is endowed with ultra-responsive sensors and a neural net to rapidly recognize any dangerous elements in the air.

Development of audio technology - sound and vision working together. The first audio related technology mirrored what we already have as human beings. Large cones made to replicate the hearing function of the ear

This Mirroring of what we already have can also been within the development of the car, the first designs of cars were based on the horse and carriage

We still use analog ways of thinking within a digital world of multi medias

The way is which a piece of design work uses a particular media can be used to judge how successful of creative that design is, as it may have used that media in the best way possible

An artwork, in order to be successful, needs to adhere to the specific stylistic properties of its own medium. - Gotthold Ephraim Lessing 1776

Medium specificity and media specific analysis are ways to identify new media art forms, such as Internet art.

Media also creates a aesthetic tool for judge by which design adheres to the media specific aesthetics, these are pre modernist ways of thinking

In order for a medium to have characteristic qualities it must be grounded in a tradition that has established these qualities as intrinsic properties

Communication theory - ’medium’ is the message, ’media’ is what shapes that idea more than any other outside factor, media is an extension of man and extends what we can do. Media is also the carrier of the information and the communication, this creates the meaning not the content

Media is known as an extension of artistic and design based thinking and thought, medium is the message. For example typography is the media used to communicate a message, if the typography contains errors the communicator ion is changed

Within this digital age out attention is always divided across multiple forms of media, we never concentrate on one media, our attention is split

The medium is the message - Marshall McLuhan

Social and individual forms of media, the book for example is a solely individual communicative media whereas a Newspaper is a more social experience, it can be read in a public place, it’s current and involves those around you

Electronic technology is reshaping and restructuring patterns of social interdependence and every aspect of our personal lives - Marshall McLuhan

Electronic communication technology also allows us to break down barrier of time and space (distance) within the world which allows us to live as a global community on a global scale

Media also shapes the way we live, traditionally the fire place would form the central point of a living room, with the invention of the radio, furies would. E placed around the radio, as it was once a social experience to listen to the radio and now the television form the focal point of a room and furniture is positioned to face it.

With even more electronic devices in our lives today our attention is no longer even just focused on the television it is spread across multiple devices such as the mobile phone, laptop or tablet computer

We know live in what is known as a global village as no one is out of touch, everyone is now accessible by at least one form of communication media. This is shaping and changing our social experiences and also how our brain primarily functions

The lens within a camera is the extension of our sight but the media of films is also an extension of how our minds work, the movement and progression of the narrative etc

Sound and media specificity has been defined by the media it has been recorded, the first 10 inch disc recorded 3 minutes of audio, songwriters therefore tailored there music to fit this media specific constraint, although the format has now changed to likes of digital MP3, the 3 minute format is still used. Additionally radio airplay slots are also 3 minute therefore longer songs have to be remixed into radio edits to fit the media format of radio.

All media is direct result of our inability of humans to directly communicate a message, from Brian to brain and person to person

However media can always distort a message and it is never certain how a message maybe received by the recipient, furthermore the translation and transmission of a message from one media to another can also distort its final meaning

We are currently living in a trans media age, the digital age, we have taken what has been learnt from the analog period and translated this into digital forms of media and communication

We are heading towards a time where media specificity will become much clearer as we become part of it

Comic specificity - page is segmented into frames separated by borders, each frame contains a part of the story, they are set out in chronological order to create a narrative. Comics are a type of graphical story telling.

Format represents the physical point of contact with the user; affecting how we receive a design's printed or online information.
Format is derived from the media specific qualities of the material used

In the future - Technology will in the future transform society and ways we interact and organise ourselves.The new technologies that convergence produces have immense consequences for global security, communications, surveillance, health, ecosystems, biogenetics and the prolongation of life

100 Things/ Newspaper Club

As it is not possible to print onto newspaper using the facilities available to me, I have chosen to print my newspaper with a London based company called Newspaper club, they cater for bespoke prints of newspaper so it's ideal for this brief as I only need one of each newspaper I will be designing.

Newspaper Club prints twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday, at 2pm London time. Delivery in the UK typically happens 3-4 days after printing, with newspapers often arriving before the weekend, but can take longer.

If you need your newspapers in time for a special event, please let us know when ordering and often we can arrange that for you.


Need to know:

  • The page sizes for both types are 289mm × 380mm (spread size 578mm x 380mm) including any margins.
  • You can see that page 1 is the front cover, and page 12 the back cover. Pages 6 and 7 are the centre spread – that’s the only spread that’s printed on the same piece of paper, so pictures can run across both pages without any breaks
  • Images should be a minimum resolution of 150 DPI
  • If you have a blank page or space opposite heavy pictures or text it is possible that there will be a noticeable ‘ghosting’ impression on the blank area. It is also possible that you will notice ‘show through’ from the other side of the paper

Lecture 8: History of Type

The decision one makes about typeface and colour can dramatically later the message that is being communicated

Gill Sans, a classic english sans serif typeface, used for railways and signage across the country, communicates a different message than if times new roman typeface was used

Certain typeface resonates with history and the historical attributes of the country in which it was designed

How you present what is being communicated is as important as the content being communicated

Typography is the intersection between verbal and visual communication

Typography is a visual tool that adds verbal communication

Typography consists of three main criteria, meta communication, paralinguistic and kinesics

Meta communication - is a language used to comment on another language, for example typefaces speak in different voices, they change the language and meaning of what is being communicated

Paralinguistic - is a language that structures another language, create speed and pace within the language

Kinesics - Gestures that are employed alongside words which emphasize or change the message being communicated, typography does this - The typeface can be a kinesic act, for example using capitals is a learnt behavior that when used is meant to symbolise someone shouting, Kinesics can also change the way a message is received

There are six main type classifications, although these are debatable among typographers, they are also feature many sub classifications and further classifications with these

Typefaces were first introduced with the invention of the Gutenberg press in 1450, the press was the first form of moveable type which also for the mass production of printed media, prior to this the only form of written communication were by hand writing books and scripts

The introduction of this invention changed the world, before this nothing happened within the world and this period was known as the dark ages, no one was educated and the world did not moved forward, monks we’re the only people who kept knowledge going within there closed communities

Typography and the letterpress saved our world from the dark ages

The alphabet used within typeface of the letterpress was created from roman culture, the capital letters still present within our alphabet today came from roman culture featured on Trajan’s column, the lowercase set of letters within our alphabet come from the scripts written by monks

Gothic Script was the first form of moveable type created for the Gutenberg printing press, these typefaces were modeled on medieval type, however these were hard to read

Black letter was then created as the first typeface designed for printing, this was then soon superseded by humanist typefaces

Nicholas Jenson created the typeface called ‘Jenson’ the typeface was considerably more modern and significantly easier to read, this typeface still looked at human hand writing for its basis and inspiration, Jenson was attempting to modernize the typefaces of that period

Humanist typefaces reflect human handwriting and human philosophy

‘E’ can be used to recognize humanist typeface by the slanting of the e

Within 50 years type, typefaces and typography comes into a form and practice of it’s own

The first font family is developed called ‘Old Style’

More fonts then began to emerge, such as Garamond

Differences in spacing began to appear within typefaces which helped make them easier to read

Typography starts to become an art form, then art begins to be thought of outside of human handwriting

Fonts that are referred to as Roman because of how they are created and there influences during their creation

Enlightenment the shift in world moving from religion for knowledge towards and science and maths is also reflected in Typography, typefaces are now designed around scientific and mathematical theory (around 1963 this began)

Type now begins to be made using order and rules for its creation, the typefaces created during this period are referred to as transitional fonts

Fonts made during this era focus less on human handwriting and more on readability, simplicity

William Caslon begins to create letter forms are unique and separate from the forms creating in handwriting

In 1776, the deceleration had a new typeface created for the document to demonstrate a new world independence with a new font

Within these new typefaces being create the stroke contrast becomes more apparent, with increases the readability of the font, however this was met with a backlash of people suggesting this contrast is becoming to be big and thin strokes ‘will blind people’ when they read these new typefaces

Typefaces became easier and more accurately created with the invention of modern type through the movements of modernity

Modern typefaces are known as Didones

Bondoni is the most famous of these modern typefaces with characteristics such as high contrasts in stroke weight, abrupt serif and logically ordered

Didones were created at the start of modernity

Didones represent elegance, style and high end class and glamour

Slab serif fonts or fonts sometime refereed to as Egyptian fonts were a direct product and result of industrialization and urbanism, they were designed to be bold and stand out and scream at the audience through the hustle and bustle of modern urban society, these fonts were not sophisticated at all

Fat face fonts echo the style of slab serif fonts but were designed for use within print production

Typewriters also had there own version of slab serif typefaces, most iconically used within the I heart New york image

Sans serif fonts first became introduced within the late 1800’s, although sans serif fonts became extremely popular later when the first sans serif font was created in 1896 it was not recognized as a significant move forward within typography

Grotesk typefaces are a variant of sans serif typeface, they are extremely stripped back to simply communication and are anti decoration

These fonts are anti-historical, many were also unicameral, which means they are made of lowercase letterform and uppercase letters forms are not require and only confuse the information being communicated

English typographers also began to embrace this modernist movement with these creation of Gill Sans in 1926

This wave of modernism began to sweep europe however traditionalist were still creating typefaces such as the creation of Times New Roman 1932, which focused on looking backwards rather than forward thinking like the ideology of modernism, Stanley morris the creator of Times New Roman, maybe seen as a post modernist as he created the font as a reaction to modernism

However Nazi at this time were also looking back for inspiration for their typeface, they looked back to the early black letter typefaces

The most famous typeface in the world Helvetica, created in 1957 is a swiss style typeface, it has grown to become one of the most dominant fonts within the world and is now used everywhere

It is most commonly used within the corporate world because of it simplistic qualities


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