Hi all, i had quite and interesting time freelancing for Haymarket Singapore. Received a call from the editor of Stuff Singapore that they would require an on site designer for their upcoming issue. Myself having had experience with the magazine during my time at my previous workplace, this was a no brainer.
No sooner than 10 mins after my arrival, it got word to the other folks there that a designer was in the premises and i was immediately thrown headfirst into a FourFourTwo Singapore project that i havent had time to digest properly. From the initial brief given, i knew immediately that the given timeframe given to undertake both titles would be a very tight affair. My foolish, naive self gladly accepted it as a challenge poorly remembering that it has been quite a while since my time management skills have been duly tested.
In between Stuff Magazine duties, i had just enough time to digest the brief and do a tiny bit of research. First order of business is to see what FourFourTwo UK has done for their FFT100. After understanding why certain elements are where they are, i too came up with a template of my own. My initial idea was to have a consistent theme across their web and print graphics. See what kind of fonts their system has and see which typeface family would be good to expand and play with.
I noticed a particular typeface that they have used recently on other layouts and i thought it would be good to keep within the same family for consistency, cos im sure it would be in their best interest for them to get me a new typeface on my account just for a single use project. I gotta play this smart and just kept the kind of feel i want to convey and search thru the font library later. Try to get some preliminary visuals up first and see which of them speaks with each other.
The next order of business and what they were most eager to see were the design template for all the 50 players. Knowing where the final artwork would end up greatly determines the design application of choice and right now, it was either indesign or illustrator. I knew indesign on the macpro would handle 50 non facing pages without a hitch and i get the to use one of my favourite tools in all of humanity, the snap in place function. Adobe illustrator has it too but its not exactly the same, its more of a workaround but hey… if it works, it works. I had to quickly weigh my pros and cons and see which luxury i can forego the most without breaking my creativity. I love illustrator for what it can do but im abit more inclined to indesign for the text input stuffs. Since this is more graphic heavy than text heavy, illustrator was my champion.
Well then, 5 paragraphs in and still we have not seen any player artwork. There is a reason for that, designers tend to visualize as they go along. And will often already have a tiny semblance of a concept in their head just by talking and brainstorming with colleagues. Some will have the discipline to start with a sketch and most if not every time the design manifests itself onto the computer screen, it would have already gone thru 2-3 mental revisions already. At least that’s how ive always been doing it and this will provide an insight to future clients on how i approach projects.
Keisuke Honda was the first, followed by Mathew Spiranovic to get their template done, i had primarily shortlisted a few players and was curious to see how the proposed template holds up with players of varying poses and sizes. It was then that i immediately realized that i need to differentiate myself from the previous designs and lock down certain recurring elements. We have the countdown numbers, the FourFourTwo brand with the hashtag, the sponsor and of course the boot. With this locked down in place, i was hoping the viewers eyes wont have to play air hockey trying to find the same information with every new player and template. It was decided the each template would also have either their country or club’s colours echo throughout the design.
For anyone interested, this is a screenshot of all 50 player designs stitched into one jpeg. It was a conscious decision to work on these randomly and not in ascending or descending order. In my mind, i was trying not to show an evolved design where incremental changes would effect the next player and so forth. I was hoping to find beauty in chaos. (do i get brownie points for saying such lines?)
Stay tuned, there is still part 2 to this. The project has bled into a single page AD onto some web promos and a specially designed gift for Korea’s Son Heung Min