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So with my first attempt to make instructional videos for my students failing gracefully, I realize I need to invest in some sort of mic and learn how to use my DSLR for video. I don’t like doing anything that is not up to a certain level and that, and available time, is the reason I haven’t published or pursued an official design channel. That and I can’t stand the sound of my recorded voice. So in the meantime I will continue to use other videos to showcase how things are done while saving money to properly create instructional videos.

How to create mockups. A proper tutorial.

This post is sponsored by… well no one, unfortunately.

Unfortunately, with only four classes, I cannot address every facet of graphic design. My goal as a professor under the current system is to prepare you to be competitive. But when the industry changes at an incredible pace, where do I begin, how can I squeeze everything in.

That’s where taking your education into your own hands comes in. I encourage you to learn about UI/UX design, motion graphics, premiere, and after effects. And… SkillShare is the place to do it. You get 2 months free as a new member and then it’s $9.99/month after that. Why not improve yourself and learn from some of your heroes.

Check them out if you haven’t already. I promise you, if I had the time, I would be right next to you learning new things that interest me from design to business to leadership. Start now when you are not nearly as busy as I am. Check out SkillShare.

One last thing, if you want to see Columbus State offer a full degree in Graphic Design speak up. As students, you have the power to institute the most change, without you, the university doesn’t exist. Ask for change, until the higher ups start hearing from you, I will just be the old young talking nonsense from a hilltop.

N/McMillan

Finding Information while in search of Inspiration

One of the greatest things I enjoy about research are the continuous questions and digging that must occur when you are trying to answer your initial question. You start one place and dive down the rabbit hole. The secret to this process is knowing when you have gone too far. In graduate school, I explored this process in a tiny study room in the library. Stacking a dozen books and slowly digging through each them, finding information that formed new questions that had to be answered. I absolutely loved the process and miss that tiny room at times.

Today, I dig through the world looking for inspiration for you, my student, but often find myself stumbling across articles, information, and inspiration that I had never intended to. It’s a great experience and feeling to find something new and unexpected. Inspiration can be found everywhere, so next time you are walking around or on the internet, put your phone on do not disturb, put on some chill music, and allow yourself to get lost; you never can tell what you might find.

99 Descriptive Design Words You Should Know

~Kris Decker (source)

I have never had a big vocabulary and have often asked why PhDs feel like they need to use ten cent words (the irony here is fantastic). It was best explained to me by a doctor I saw at an Urgent Care facility. She said it was all about fitting in and sounding like you belong amongst a group of your peers. In other words, context matters.

Designers have their own language too, and to “belong” you do need to speak our language. This is not to say you can’t be yourself, but you do have to know key terms when working in this industry that allows you a ton of personal freedoms.

Read this article from 99 Designs to expand your design vocabulary.

Painted Murals (Uh…Advertisements)

When I went to LA for Adobe Max I was amazed at a variety of gargantuan advertisements that at first glance I thought were traditional vinyl. Upon closer inspection, they were actually painted murals. Then, Tori Neundorfer sent me this video. My mind was already blown before watching it, so if you love painting and design, willing to start as an apprentice, and are up for a challenge, this job may just be for you.

For the Love of Mockups

You know how much I love seeing your work mocked up, but more importantly how well they can showcase your work in your portfolio or on Behance. Tonight I came across FORMAT, a site that has a number of resources including 150 Free PSD Mockups. I have already downloaded some for my personal use, so go see if there are any that you can use and get to downloading.

Learning from the Art of Character Design

In doing research for GD3s next project, I came across this great article (10 Quick Tips to Help You Design Characters Like a Pro) and resources for those who are looking into Character Design for whatever reason. Although we very rarely come across this type of work in graphic design, there is much which we can glean from its process of development: Have a Concept, Less is More, Be Inspired, Make your Work Unique, Use Color to Communicate.

Image Courtesy of Pixel77.com

Hoefler & Lee

This coming Wednesday we will be watching an episode of Netflix’s Abstract: The Art of Design focusing on type designer Jonathan Hoefler. “Hoefler has designed original typefaces for Rolling StoneHarper’s BazaarThe New York Times MagazineSports Illustrated, and Esquire” as well as “the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and alternative band They Might Be Giants.” Source.

The second feature on October 16th at 5p will be With Great Power… The Stan Lee Story, which highlights the life and extraordinary career of Marvel comics legend Stan Lee, co-creator of more than 500 characters, including Spider-Man, the Hulk and X-Men.

Join us for both films and learn a little more about design, comics, creativity, and imagination.

Design & Movie Night

AFTER HOURS
OAP 111 Wednesday,

Sept 25th 5–730p
While we are working hard to build a great program and make you the best designers in the region, come watch a film based on the elite school that our Navy Pilots are selected to attend in order to be challenged to become the best in the world; Top Gun.

The Top Gun Naval Fighter Weapons School is where the best of the best train to refine their elite flying skills. When hotshot fighter pilot Maverick (Tom Cruise) is sent to the school, his reckless attitude and cocky demeanor put him at odds with the other pilots, especially the cool and collected Iceman (Val Kilmer).

Marcos pizza to be provided.

Uh… I think you stole my work.

With the proliferation of social media, we are encouraged to share our work to our friends, followers, and in some cases as a method of building our freelance clientele. There comes a time, however, while perusing through the interwebs late at night we come across some sort of filth that is trying to pass off our work as their own. Do you know what to do other than publicly shame them into taking it down? Is there any legal action you could take? Is it worth it?

In James Cartwright’s article entitled What Every Designer Needs to Know About Copyright Law, James Cartwright explores this very scenario. Not only does he give specifics about the process, including cost, but he covers ” some basics, a set of essentials for young designers working in the commercial world.”

If you would like me to explore more about developing a course specific to Copyright and Trademark law as it applies to design, please let me know at mcmillan_nicholas@columbusstate.edu and I will work to partner with the Turner College of Business to see if we can’t make it happen.

N/McMillan