by Jonathan Goh, Tiffany Ng, Loke Mun Mun, Zafirah
For this assignment, we were tasked to create and tell a narrative story through social media platforms and we decided to use Instagram as our chosen platform.
We wanted to focus on the idea that social media are actually platforms where we share bits of information of ourselves, but never the full story. We show but never tell and we keep things cryptic and abstract, as though we are hiding a secret life. It is often the push and pull between what we want others to find out while hiding what we don’t want them to know.
Audience (friends/peers) are then tasked with piecing these information together and drawing their own conclusions of the “story” or “gossip” whichever they determine it to be.
With our narrative, we have attempted to play on these elements to allow audiences to experience the journey of connecting the dots through such cryptic posts by playing a character in the story. This provides audience a window into the world in which the narrative take place and piece the story from a different perspective.
We decided to host our story instagram due to its features that allows us to show:
Immediate events (through instagram story)
Cryptic, abstract statements by characters (through instagram posts)
Engagement between characters (through instagram comments and likes)
A double-life (through the creation of private accounts)
As you go through the following slides, take some time to read through the characters’ instagram accounts and posts. Read their caption, or even search them on instagram to find more details about them.
Try piecing together a story of what you think happened.
Before reading the reveal to find out the truth and intention behind every posts. Enjoy!
In case you missed it, here is the finalised layout for the zine!
“…my aim and objective for the zine is to introduce thought-provoking ideas and combine them with interesting visuals to capture readers’ attention.”
For the content, the idea was to challenge our perspectives as we go through our everyday. I titled the zine “Wonder-in” as a wordplay between the meanings of “wondering” which carries a certain idea of adventure and curiousity as well as “wonder” which is the feeling of admiration and amazement, towards the area of Bendemeer. Hence the title of the zine become “Wonder-in Bendemeer”. (carrying a dual meaning of both ‘wondering Bendemeer’ and Seeing the ‘wonder in Bendemeer’)
I decided to split the content of the zine to three chapters:
What Can’t You See
Up is Down
Each chapter expresses a certain idea of “seeing” in wonder, and is based off a picture. The content ultimately affected the spread. Helping me determine the photo collage used for each spread and the colour palette subsequently.
What Can’t You See
Colour choice: BLUE
I decided to use a normal photo for the first spread to introduce the first chapter of Wonder then leading into the next. I included a typographic play on the chapter title as well to illustrate the idea between what you can see and what you can’t – the difference ultimately lies within ourselves. The use of a normal photo suggests the idea that this is in fact what we see in plain sight, yet if we would only see again, the endless possibilities that could be…
Up is Down
Colour choice: RED
To illustrate the idea of “wonder in looking up”, I used photos that allowed me to play with interesting angles, especially ones that showed either a ceiling or the sky. I replaced the image with something unlikely to highlight the contrast between what is and what isn’t. The use of red as the main colour scheme for this spread was to complement the warm colours present in the photo collages.
Colour choice: GREEN
As the title suggests, Beyond is all about looking beyond, seeing an object not as what it is but what it could be. For the collages, I decided to go out a little, playing with images of space, mountains and oceans and combining it with the otherwise concrete jungle of Bendemeer. The result is a strong contrast between the sharp edges of the angular buildings together with the ‘softer’ scenery in the background. The idea of the images for this chapter was to create the sense of bewilderment.
B&W: The first print sample was a black and white mock-up. Though the layout was not yet finalised, the purpose of this mockup was to test the alignment and the arrangement of the zine and to fix any print problems we may potentially face.
The print of the B&W sample was done using an A4 paper single sided print. I then glued both sides together. This was to increase the thickness of the paper and also avoid any printing errors as I did not want to waste ink.
As can be seen from the markings made, there were some changes to be made to the layout and design. Following the feedback, I then went on to make more edits and proceeded with print #2.
Colour Print #1: Colour Print 1 was printed after the overall layout was completed. It was done on 160 gsm paper, double-sided matte print. However, the final print colour seemed a little dull and the whiter areas had an overall pinkish tint to it.
Colour Print #2: Colour Print 2 was printed after the overall layout was completed. It was done on 100 gsm paper, double-sided print. The final print colour was stronger and had stronger contrast compared to the fade in Print #1. Hence, I decided to go with Colour Print #2 for the final print! (though the paper is thinner than I expected).
Once done with the traditional print, I wanted to venture and allow the audience to have more interaction with the zine. Also, with the 8 pages, there was a limitation in what can be shared and what content the video can experience.
After much consideration, I decided to create an Instagram account page for the Zine, and link it via the QR code on the last page.
The reader can then scroll through the Instagram page to see a series of curated photos from the zine as well as other photos. The link in bio links to an Issuu page where the reader can browse a digital copy of the magazine on that platform.
DIRECTIONS FOR QR CODE: For iPhone users, just simply open your camera and point the camera towards the QR code. A banner notification with a link should appear prompting you to go to the link. Just click and voila, you’ve arrived on Wonder-in’s instagram page. Feel free to interact with the story (highlight) and scroll through the feed!
The purpose of the instagram page is an extension of the zine. It serves as a platform to inspire and engage as it encourages others to see the “wonder” in the ordinary. It also allows readers to share photos that inspire them with their friends.
Its a tiring process coming up with a zine concept from scratch. However, through this project, I’ve realised the strengths and limitations of traditional print media. The (expensive) costs of printing, versus other mediums to allow someone to experience something.
I’m quite satisfied with the final outcome of Wonder-in, and am really glad that the final product came quite close to what I had planned. The content within the zine is also something that is very close to my heart and I’m really happy that I got the opportunity to communicate it through this project. 🙂
I have always loved reading magazines, especially zines. They have strong personalities, ideas and visual identities that is expressed through their content and visual graphics (photos/illustration/layout). The RUBBISH FAMzine series of Zines by local family art collective holycrap is one example of this. Their use of Zine as a platform to share personal experiences and thoughts as a family engages readers as their content becomes relatable and thoughtful. Combined with their use of strong visual themes, no wonder this Zine has won numerous design awards and is well recognised worldwide as well.
Approaching this Project, I decided that I would want to create a zine that would allow space for these areas to show. Hence, my aim and objective for the zine is to introduce thought-provoking ideas and combine them with interesting visuals to capture readers’ attention.
Journey to Bendemeer (Project 2a).
BENDEMEER. YES. I travelled from Yew Tee to Bendemeer (which I actually have never been to before) cos that was the area suggested/given/selected by me. I thought that the nearest MRT was Bendemeer (on the downtown line) but I was wrong. Turns out that Boon Keng is nearer to the Bendemeer Estate.
To cut a long story short, I actually visited the area twice. I alighted the first time at Bendemeer and ended up exploring the Industrial Estate there (which was not very interesting) and the second time at Boon Keng where I explored the residential areas and other areas of Bendemeer.
The MRT at Bendemeer was actually really empty (as though it was unoccupied). Felt kinda creepy.
Anyway, read all about the exploration here in my presentation slides!
While crafting the presentation, the idea of using collages to express a different side of Bendemeer came to mind and I decided to continue to explore that idea.
For the first consultation, I created a moodboard to firm up certain ideas I have had. I settled on a theme for my zine that would be exploring the concept of “seeing”. I added words that I associated “seeing” with to give myself a rough idea of what content and what other ideas I can explore with the zine.
I also included references images, and examples of layouts that inspired me.
As I have already curated a series of photos for use in my presentation, I decided to continue with these photos and try collaging them. The aim is to create a surrealistic visual that will allow readers to question the image.
Here are some examples of the first collage drafts:
Some feedback for the images were that some were not “surrealistic” enough and so it was back to photoshop once again.
Once I was done editing the image, I started to layout the images and spread them out to try the layouts. (without the content).
Presenting, WONDER-IN #1
I decided to use a sky image of Bendemeer as it gave the magazine a sense of context. The typography of the main title logo was deliberately wavy to translate the idea of “Wonder”.
I split the content into 3 main chapters, and tried to use different colours and typography treatment to highlight each chapter’s unique aspects.
The difficulty was trying to experiment interesting layout while ensuring that every spread is consistent and not out of place!
Feedback were that the spread for pg 4-5 and 6-7 were lacklustre in the energy in terms of the layout as compared to the spread in pg 2-3…
I was quite satisfied with the use of colours, and typography for the first draft so I didn’t change it much.
For V2 I tried experimenting more with the potential of the layouts but with the content not done, the layouts continued to grow and was edited along the way. To cut the long story short, here is the finalised layout at the end. which was V3438247384379482.
With the content more or less complicated and in line with how I want the visual graphics to tie and link with, the layout was completed soon after. Due the to small amount of pages for this zine, I decided to do away with page numbers as well.
Apart from the minor changes in terms of layout, I also included a map of Bendemeer at the backpage as well as a QR code with a scan that links to an instagram page set up. But more on that in my next post!
Presented are the findings that have been organised and collated from my exploration of Bendemeer.
As it was to be presented in the style of an infographic and visually engaging, I made sure to use a certain form of “data collection” from my journey and also include as many graphics/photos as possible. I also experimented with creating gifs and adding sounds to the presentation to engage the audiences’ senses.
For the purpose of this post, the gifs and audio sounds have been ommited.
To make sense of my exploration, I decided to create an objective- a judging criteria, based on what seemed most visually interesting to me. (this may not apply to others but it is a biased opinion on the sights and sounds of Bendemeer by me)
And to make it fair, I included the use of certain factors that would help me make my decision and they are:
Ultimately the idea to create a modular bag pack got canned due to the fact that it was gonna be a very complicated construction process and given the limited time-line, it was gonna be very difficult to execute the idea.
Nonetheless, the idea was to merge the core essential idea into a messenger bag by trying to balance space and compartmentalisation.
Some lessons from the first and second mock up includes Planning Ahead. Due to the use of paper materials, this meant that there would be certain limitations and problems. The use of certain folds on Mock-Up 2 made the entire bag look like a Document Folder which was not the intended result.
I ultimately went back to the form and shape of Mock-up 1, but used different materials to give the bag more shape and form. The use of Cardboard also gave the base and back of the bag more padding since it was suppose to hold a laptop.
Throughout the entire process, I kept referring back to my references and my sketches, trying to mimic the folds and compartment types used and also trying to keep to my original design. In the end, the product design changed due to use of thicker materials and the need to include other considerations such as how to “close” the bag.
The main form of adhesive used for the construction of the bag was double sided tape. Masking tape was used at times and scotch tape on other occasions. UHU glue proved to be useless and did not provide a strong adhesive between surfaces hence was abandoned.
Once the shape of the bag is out, the next step is to include accessories to its interior. The selected accessories to go for are the Laptop Sleeve, a Beverage holder sleeve and a sleeve pouch. The accessories are all fitted with velcro so that they would be easily customisable to the side velcro lining. The addition of one front pockets as well as two side pockets allow space for small personal items as well.
The final touch-up was to add rims to the opening of the bags as they were ugly and quite unsightly. The use of rims also helped reinforced and strengthen the weaker areas (especially the front of the bag).
The final outcome of the bag is meant to demonstrate the functionality and use of the Bag itself. Hence I did not create a strap to go along with it. The strap used with this prototype was taken from another bag that I own.The aesthetic of the bag is not yet finalised as the front flap still remains bare.