“What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce.”
– Kal Lagerfeld
Through photography, I have been gifted the freedom of sharing the stories of people’s moments with others. It is a heartening process for me. It was a process of soul-searching, something everyone is committed to, regardless of their endeavor. In each moment I photographed, I saw a small part of me inside. I came to understand, through the alchemical course of leading our everyday life, which each life is relevant, despite how insignificant it seems to offer.
Therefore, with so much meaning and significance photography can provide, I decided to base my last project on it. My recent project is titled “Zine”. It required us to share our experience and thoughts that we gained throughout our foundation year. We are supposed to showcase it through a well thought out layout design.
From my zine, I hope my readers can learn that a fascinating photograph is a complete interpretation of how one experiences about what is being photographed in the deepest feel and is, therefore, a genuine understanding of how one feels about life in its entirely.
The thought and design process.
For the overall design of my zine, I decided to adopt a sketchbook style presentation method. The reason being photography is a form of documentation to me. It is about recording and appreciating the different moments in life. Therefore, I feel sketchbook style presentation can bring out the documentation essence of photography.
With that, I started designing for my zine layout by exploring and referencing from the available online and physical resources. I want to gain a better understanding of how information are presented in different sketchbook mediums.
Some of the sketchbooks sample from difference sources.
After researching on the different sources available, I moved on to sketch out and materialised my initial ideas for my zine layout design. Honestly, most of the sketches that I did are taking reference from existing sources. Through researching and sketching the design for my zine, I realised churning out a presentable layout is pure hard work. There are so much planning and thinking involved in putting the text and graphics in the right place for the different elements to click.
Some of the initial ideas sketch during the design process.
With the initial ideas in place and materialized, I started designing for my zine layout. I wanted to establish a casual and informal mood for my overall zine layout design.
Some of the work in progress images.
The final layout design.
ZINE – MOMENTS IN LIFE
For my zine, I decided to title it “Moments in Life.” I feel that there are moments in life when the entire world manoeuvre so slowly that you can sense your soul drifting, your mind tumbling. You feel that no matter what else hit you for the rest of your days on earth, you will forever recall every last detail of those moments. Those are the moments that I hope I can capture with my camera. Therefore, by titling it “Moments in Life” I wish to use it as a platform to share with my readers my joy of capturing the precious moments in my life.
For the cover page, I decided to go for a casual and informal look. I want to create an inviting and comfortable atmosphere for my readers reading my photography stories. I added in customized badges at both sides of the title. The badges are with titles such as “Anti-selfie Society” and “Animal Photography: No flash”. This shows my displeasure on people using their cameras for reasons that I feel are not to my liking. There are also two Polaroid photos showing images of a cat and a dog with scribbling around them. This creates humor and lightens the mood for the publication. It also hints to the readers that I love animals. I also added quotes to creates a poetic feel for my publications. And by using a handwritten font for the quotes, it makes the quotes feels more personal and close to the heart. I decided to leave a white strip at the side of the cover. This “miss print” presentation is to complement the rawness and personal nature of zine productions. For the background, I used a blurred lighting spread. It is to enhance further the overall mood and presentation for the publication cover.
For the content of the publication, I decided to go for a consistent sketchbook presentation. For each photo, I used different photography related graphic to frame them up. I did the same treatment to the text as well. I used different paper graphics to separate them from the photographs. This personalises each photography and text in the publication. Besides the photos and text, I also personalised the numbers used to numbered the photography. Different sizes, colours and opacity for the text to create a hierarchy. It helps to organise the content in an organised manner to allow the reader to have an easy time reading the content. Specific background graphics are also used for the different photography themes. For example, under the animal photography section, the background consists of the different animal graphic in line forms. The old paper background texture is also used to create a nostalgic feel for the publication.
For this foundation year, I guess one of the most important things that I learn is believing in yourself. It is easy to say but hard to be carried out. There will be times when you doubt yourself, questioning your ability and thinking about giving up. However, at the end of the day, you had to put yourself together and held the belief that you are worth something. Your awareness is derived from your perception and your capacity to be yourself, to own and to have faith in yourself, and to say things that will motivate yourself, even when nobody believes in you.
If you feel you that you need to take a different path from other people, do so, do so to generate positive changes in your life and for the good of this world. You will never regret that determination and effort in making that decision. Belief in yourself, other people will then believe in you in time. Do what you have to do to turn those ideas you have in yourself into incredible things and let them do the talking for you.
Therefore, consistently believe in yourself, genuinely. Do not be bothered by what other people might say or do. If you believe in your abilities to do things, do it. Allow your passion to grant you the motivation to your every step in your journey to success. Let your passion grant you energy when doubts and fear try to set in.
“Sometimes you’re encouraged, and other times disappointed. It’s a matter of going in and precluding all that with, ‘This is what I do, not who I am.’ I need to be who I am in the process of doing what I do. I need to stay true to what it is I’m really here for. And that’s the hardest thing, the biggest challenge.”
– Craig T. Nelson