Tag: design

Design Artefact 2: Process

Design Artefact 2: Website

I started off looking at sleek, efficient websites and collated a moodboard that featured websites with a strong color theme, attractive visuals, shapes and a clean overall composition.

I admired the clean simplicity of websites like these and decided to emulate them. Financial services tend to be complex, and the ability to simplify complex concepts into bite sized chunks would be crucial to communicate effectively with our customers.

I stuck to the gold and brown color theme which on hindsight I should’ve adopted for my other posters but the directive came from above in which they wanted the posters to be more youthful and exuberant, whereas the posters would be more serious and elegant.

It was important to get our vision and mission statement out early on so that potential clients would know what kind of company we are, and how they can benefit from our services.

The founding team is on the About page; I kept it simple and clean for visitors to take a look at the different skillsets that we bring to the table.

We also needed a page to channel our clients into our sales funnel, and this would be the page where clients could sign up for an introductory portfolio review where our brokers would analyse their portfolio for them.

I am a strong believer of giving value before asking for anything. From a marketing perspective, we must be willing to give more than our competitors if we hope to reap the rewards of customer loyalty and brand image. Thus, we provide up-to-date news coverage for early investors and people who want to learn more about the financial markets. These tabs then open into full articles.

I made a few adjustments after the consultation, where the colour scheme was not consistent, and to make the overall design “tighter”.

Design Artefact 1: Process

Design Artefact 1: Posters / EDM

I started off designing posters for the financial brokerage firm Millennium Associates. The posters were intended to target the recently married or married couples who just had children. This would allow the brokers in the company to help to facilitate setting up a trust fund to help with their children’s education and future expenses.

Poster 1: Don’t lose your children’s bread and butter

I started off by taking a simple top down photograph of my baby sister’s cutlery, and rending it in photoshop to make it look better.


The attempt to express a visual metaphor came from the idea of a plate, and playing with the idea of a plate to communicate the urgency of financial planning and ensuring that clients’ families are well protected.

I did not like the outcome of rendering the plate on illustrator, and I felt it may be a bit too boring, hence I decided to merge the mediums of photography and illustration to get a desired effect.

The idea of “loss” is conveyed through putting a couple of dollars on a baby’s plate, communicating the lack of sustainability in the way most couples are going about planning for their children’s education.

This was draft 1 of the poster. I created a table cloth patterned background and information that was placed in a central composition, while the logo was placed in the top right. During the consultation, it was mentioned that the message might be too strong, as “losing your child” can mean many things; like a child dying etc. Therefore, I had to rework on the message, and perhaps make the logo a bit smaller.

Poster 2: The race begins early

I started off with a simple concept of the race track, where every parent wants their children to get a headstart in the rat race. There are different ways to ensure that one’s children have an advantage, but the firm’s focus was to start early to end well. Thus, our ads have to be targeted at children, so that the trust fund has time to grow and deliver the results needed.

Again, it was a blend of vector illustration and photography. This gave the poster an element of youthful playfulness, and would not feel as static as a poster incorporating just one medium.

The advice given during consultation was that the 2 posters had 2 radically different compositions; the first adopted a central composition whereas the second was more dynamic and off-centre. Thus, I worked to ensure that both posters had the same composition, tightening the grids and playing with type to ensure that both posters conveyed the same kind of playfulness and yet gravitas of the message.

Infographic Poster: Process

I began working on the infographic poster by identifying the target audience and looking at what type of poster would best appeal to the target audience.

Target Audience: married couples, above 30, planning to have children or already have children.

Purpose: to explain legacy planning to these people, getting their buy-in and helping them set up a trust fund or engage in tax or legal services to preserve and grow their wealth for their children.

Problem identification: the biggest issue that I faced when doing data collection is the fact that most people are not aware of the avenues available that will counteract the problem of their wealth depreciating over time. A lot of Singaporeans are generally complacent as we think that CPF is sufficient to live a good life after retirement and to pass on to our children but that is hardly the case.

Based on the chart above, I strove to achieve a poster that was declarative and simplified a concept. The reason why was because the poster is meant to sell the consultancy company’s services, by educating clients and simplifying the concept of legacy planning into 3 basic strategies.

The use of a visual metaphor to integrate the information into a singular image would be important to drive home the importance of legacy planning. On top of that, the poster also needs to drive home the big picture framework / process of legacy planning.

First, I came up with the logo for the consultancy firm. This look a while as I looked for a metaphor that was suitable to convey boldness and wealth. I did toy with the idea of using an umbrella / tree but that turned out to be too esoteric.

I finally rested on this design as I felt it best conveys the boldness and wealth of the consultancy group giving tax, legal and advisory services. Another consideration was the target consumer; which eventually will be upper middle to upper class.

Logo: By using a lion masthead moulded into a Chinese infinity symbol, it is a suitable metaphor to convey the longevity and steadfastness of our brand.

Color: The yellow denotes gold and the colour of wealth and vitality while the earthly brown denotes our hardnosed practicality and trustworthiness.

This is the first poster that I came up with, based on a 4 column grid with the use of Futura as a preferred typeface.

During the initial critique, some of the comments that I received were that the titlehead was too small to be visible from afar and more could be done to integrate the information and the artwork. The use of italics and regular font was a bit haphazard as well. The NOW VS 2050 was a bit confusing as it seemed to some that the coffee got bigger over time, as one put it, “issit upsize?

Overall, the first draft had a lack of dynamism that made it feel dry. It was something I would try to overcome over successive drafts and revision of ideas.

Some of them gave the suggestion to turn the stack of Jenga blocks into gold bars. I did initially toy with the idea, creating a few gold bars via vector illustration, but I soon realised even with a Jenga tower with gold bars, it still lacked the human factor; it felt too stiff.

Thus, I explored the idea of walking the tightrope towards the Jenga tower and using that as a metaphor for the timeline of one’s life, and what would happen if left unplanned.

Project 3: Final Design

Taking into account the feedback that was given during the consultation, I pushed the graphic elements even further, removed non-essential elements and weaved in a narrative flow to the information of the arts and health programme.

Front cover: featuring the uniform of the nurses and the vests of the volunteers

Full spread: pictures showcasing the full breadth of the arts and health programme at Ng Teng Fong Hospital

Project 3: Research and Development

I started off the brochure project by researching on brochure design and applications of graphic elements.

This book, titled The Best of Brochure Design, offered an insight into the process of making brochures.

I looked into handdrawn illustrations as a reference for its organic and friendly outlook.

I then looked into architectural brochures for their geometrical composition, clean simple lines and efficient use of emphasis.

I was also rather inspired by this brochure taking reference from Mondrian’s composition. Its bold outlines and 3 tone colors resonated strongly with me.

I then went on to research on graphic elements that I could use for my brochure.

The use of media and color interested me; I also wanted to find a way to engage the audience appropriate to the context of Ng Teng Fong hospital.

This use of die cut and fold for a tailor in Australia made me sit up and think about the ways I could make the brochure memorable and convey the associations of arts and health to the audience.

Overall, some of the examples left an indelible impression on me as I began to explore the various ways of incorporating design elements into my brochure.


Draft 1:

The first idea I had for the brochure was incorporating the nurse’s uniform into the brochure. As the attire represented the hospital, I thought it would be able to convey the principles of the Arts and Health programme. During the consultation, Michael and I agreed that incorporating the vest of the volunteers would further enhance the idea of arts collaborating with health; volunteers working with hospital staff to improve the welfare of patients.

The first draft of the brochure was done via grid formatting, and it was clear that there was not enough flow after consulting with Michael. The grid, instead of being a liberating tool, became a limiting factor for the brochure.

The exterior had the following issues:

  1. The front cover had 2 logos which competed with each other for hierarchy.
  2. The grid on the second page was too obvious, and the titlehead could not be seen clearly.
  3. The negative space of the back cover made it look barren and awkward.

The interior had the following issues:

  1. Having the uniform on the outside and the hospital vector illustration on the inside makes it look jarring and incoherent; should stick to one central idea.
  2. Bottom too image heavy; need to shake up the composition by placing elements more dynamically.
  3. Looks too plain.

When I printed out the first draft of the brochure, I started off with the left flap of the brochure as the front cover. However, as one can see from above there is a misalignment of the “collars” as I used a larger gutter for breathing space on the right flap for indication to flip over.

I sought to resolve those issues in my second and final draft for the brochure.

Project 2: Final design

I added more branches laterally across the composition to integrate the text and the art. I chose Gill Sans as it was a san serif type, and was less rigid and formal than the other typefaces that I experimented with. I extended the clouds to the edges, with butterflies near the periphery of the poster. Overall, I think the composition is well balanced after a few rounds of editing. The text integrates well with the art and the overall feel of the poster is serene, yet with an element of excitement and unexpected fun.

Project 2: Research and Development II

I started off this project with a few moodboards based on a few different themes. I wanted to deviate from the common portrayal of arts in posters, with an element of storytelling.

Moodboard 1: art and music

Moodboard 2: enjoyment

Moodboard 3: fairytale

Thereafter, I came up with drafts of all 3 ideas based on the mindmap i created

Arts and music

The first draft was too immature, and the visual narrative was quite misleading; is Jack climbing the beanstalk to visit the hospital? Or is he painting a heaven? With these questions in mind, I then decided to create a cleaner composition.

I decided on the fairytale as a theme for my poster. Using Jack and the Beanstalk as a reference point, I used illustration to portray the idea of “creating your own adventure”, with the patient or volunteer identifying with the character Jack painting a mural that comes alive, filled with passion and immersing himself into the environment of the hospital.


This is the composition before I added in colour. I felt that there was a flow to the image, with the overlapping forms and the visual narrative. The font I initially chose was Bebas Neue, but I eventually realised it was too geometric for a fun composition.


This was draft 1 of the poster. (the colour is a bit off after uploading jpeg to OSS) The feedback I got was that the background was a bit too dull. I decided to explore more exciting colours for the background. I decided to stick to the current narrative as I liked the idea of the squirrel having been painted by Jack, decides to give back in love. In terms of the composition, the type also does not meld well with the art, which was something to consider. The type was too big and rather distracting. Again, the serif fonts felt too formal for the informal design.

Project 2: Research and Development I

I started off doing some research into vintage ads because I liked the simplistic style and technicolor aesthetics, and hoped to find some inspiration. I found an illustration magazine and among its pages were the following posters.

I liked the muted color palette and the simple, clean forms of the artwork. It was direct and sent a clear message.

I like this poster the most because of its composition, art direction and message.

The poster’s message is simple: wear and share your Nike Airmax sneakers. Being a sneakerhead, I like the way Nike has implied a community. Indeed, the brand builds communities around sports. The poster does exactly that.

By using a limited color palette with teal, red, white and black, it is able to create an immediate visual impact with space-themed aesthetics. With balls in orbit, one can easily interpret them as footballs, tennis balls etc. It has enough ambiguity to be playful. The shoe is smack in the centre, like the sun, pulling everything into its orbit.

This is the essence of the poster – Airmax is the centre of the universe. And the emotion it elicits is that of awe and amusement; that something worn on the feet can be celebrated in such a way.

The big bold custom typeface enhances legibility the poster. Together with vector illustration, flat bold colours and good contrast, it generates visual interest with the space-themed illustration first before giving clarity in the big bold type.

Overall, I feel that the playful approach makes this a very effective ad as it conveys the energy of the brand (Just Do It) as well as the call to action (AIRMAX DAY). The execution was bold and forthcoming, combining a limited palette with a bold illustration style and even bolder typography.

Task 3: Final Designs

From the previous 2 designs, I reduced the number of elements in the logo and sought to combine both ideas. The biggest challenge I faced were to incorporate elements of the previous 2 drafts into the final versions.

I started working with a pink background as i felt it would complement well with the teal vests given to volunteers.  The lighthouse made way for a more abstract form that resembled the sails of a ship. I morphed the pencil head of the previous logoform into the tip of a brush. I retained the eye in the logoform to make it come alive, imbuing it with a life of its own. This created movement and dynamism in the logoform.

In greyscale, the colours are more muted, but it was still very visible and contrasted well with the background. The form can be analysed objectively from colour, and the way the brushtip rode the skateboard with an upward movement made it fun.

I made another draft in a different color, without the eye.

This design looks less ambiguous after the removal of the eye, and thus won’t be misconstrued as a bird. As blue is the color of wisdom and reliability, it will complement well with the bold, energetic orange, pink and purple of the logoform and type, symbolising vitality.