Author Archives: Brenda

About Brenda

Hullo there :^)

Task 1A: Exploratory Research

  1. What are some of the current issues confronting our world today? Amongst them, what is of interest and a cause of concern to you? (250)

Through online articles from National Geographic, Times, NASA and many other well-known sites, I found out that there are various issues confronting our world today. Amongst them, I have narrowed it down to a few.


Firstly, we have mental disorders that is prevalent in the world but they are not well received or addressed. Mental disorders affect one in four people. Treatments are available, but nearly two-thirds of people with mental disorder never seek help from a health professional. Eg. Chester Bennington

Image result for mental disorder

Racial segregation between the white and black people is an issue. Though all humans, just because of the different skin colour each was treated differently in society and have different privileges. There are many articles about the black receiving harsh criticism even though it was nothing serious.

Environmental issues

I believe that human activities, leading to climate change is the most prevalent and important issue that we all have to address. Due to human activities, the climate suffers. Even without statistics, I’m sure everyone experienced the weird climate recently, where it rained continuously and temperatures dipped to as low as 21.2 degrees.

Image result for nasa temperature data earth climate changeImage result for nasa earth temperature climate change

Also, due to human activities, the wildlife, flora and fauna suffer. Logging and deforestation, overfishing, dumping into ocean and shark finning are just some of the examples. Being someone who feels for nature, I want to reduce these problems before they get serious. These can cause damage to the environment since plants are the basis of ecosystems and that animals help to pollinate them.

(will focus more towards plastic affecting marine life)

Image result for shark finning

  1. Why is the issue important? Who does it affect and how? (200) 

Confronting human activities that damage the environment is important. Since the whole ecosystem is interconnected, one action could lead to multiple problems. For example, dumping in the ocean by factories would cause marine life to die. With the factories continuously in production, toxic fumes would be emitted and cause damage to the ozone layer. And these would thus lead to a loss of sea ice, accelerated sea level rise and longer, more intense heat waves etc. Global temperature is rising continuously every year. If we do not start act now, it would be too late and the whole ecosystem would perish, perhaps lead the world to another cycle of ice age.

Some impacts on the environment:

  • Corals bleaching
  • Land degradation
  • Habitat destruction
  • Ozone depletion
  • Ocean acidification
  • Water pollution: Greenpeace stated that at least 267 different animal species are known to have suffered from entanglement and ingestion of plastic debris. According to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, plastic debris kills an estimated 100,000 marine mammals annually, as well as millions of birds and fishes.

  1. Who do you need to communicate to, and why? (150)

Communicate to the public, consumers as well as the government and organisations. (Technically everyone) There is a need to raise awareness and educate them about the concerns that this problem would bring about and what each one of us could be contributing in order to help. E.g. sustainability, reduce waste and decrease plastic production, substituting it with another more environmentally friendly material. Hopefully, the public will be educated and grasp a hold of how dire the situation of climate change is and start to adapt and change their lifestyle bit by bit.

  1. How has visual communication contributed to address the cause?

Designer: Evelyn Rydz, Pigmented Ink Print, 2014

Evelyn Rydz is a Boston-based artist who takes photographs and creates illustrations of man-made objects that have washed ashore, presenting these artefacts like an archaeologist of contemporary history. Through her photos, we can see how the journey through the ocean has changed these objects.

I like how these ocean waste morphed and changed throughout their journey in the water, exposed to erosion and thus becoming so unique and one of a kind. They indeed do look like artefacts but are actually just man-made objects in the sea/ocean.


Designer: Benjamin Von Wong, Photography, 2016

By using the recycled plastic bottles as a stand-in for the ocean, Von Wong hopes the images start a conversation on how plastic bottles are polluting our oceans.

Due to the plastic waste in the ocean, the mermaid’s life is at stake. He was probably trying to grasp the attention of the audience with how beautiful the mermaid is but with a dark twist. Her being surrounded and swimming in a pile of plastic waste. Indeed being a designer/artist, we have a hard time trying to change the world. But this project showed that through passion, by spreading the word, you can make a difference.


Designer:  Surfrider Foundation and Saatchi & Saatchi LA, Advertisment, 2008

“Catch of the Day,” a guerrilla ad campaign sponsored by Surfrider Foundation to educate people at farmers’ markets about the amount and kinds of pollution dumped into our seas.

Working with the ad giant Saatchi & Saatchi, real-life trash was collected from various beaches in America and packaged to look like seafood and then offered at various farmers’ markets.

This ad caught my eye immediately with the strong visuals. The ad speaks for itself. Fishes being replaced by waste in the ocean. This ad is definitely strong since it uses an everything object to “package” something different.

Image result for plastic surprise surfriderImage result for plastic surprise surfriderImage result for plastic surprise surfriderPlastic Surprise

More artists that are worth reading about:

Sea Globes

5 Types of Plastic You Can Trash From Your Daily Routine To Help Save The Oceans

Project 4: Expressive Typography


Expanding further from my previous project, 3a (type as image) which I really enjoyed, I decided to make a book of A to Z animals.

Firstly I found animals from A to Z, but I don’t really feel much for it till I stumbled across WWF’s website. You can check it out here: (

They had many animals that are endangered and requires conservation efforts to save them of which touched my heart. So, I decided to raise awareness of these endangered species with a typography book of animals and fonts from A to Z. With that I expanded my project, making the animals using different typefaces and here’s the process:

So firstly, I had to cut up the different typefaces unique to each letter and each animal then using them to fit to the contours of the animal.

As you can tell, I used mainly cut up U(s), brackets, full stop, and other letters like J/L etc.


The process was very tedious and time consuming but fulfilling when I put it all together in the end. Here are the final spreads:

I aligned letters and included the name of the animal, conservation status, name of the typeface and the letters of the typeface for reference.

The last 4 panels are my front cover, inner page, prologue and the back cover.


Before finalising those 4, I consulted Shirley regarding them and got some feedbacks. ‘

The cover page’s font is Castle T Ultra. I used that font since it was the closest I could get to mimic WWF’s customised font.

The font used for my intro/prologue page is Times New Roman since I wanted it to look more professional. Also, for my prologue, I took WWF’s mission and incorporated it in together with my objective of raising awareness for these animals/learn about the typefaces.


(back cover and front cover)


(front cover)

Comments: My font was too big and it fights for attention together with the animals. Choose a focus, either the font or the animal. Perhaps, add a wash of watercolour to bring out colour and texture to draw attention of reader. Remove unnecessary animals and just keep one as the focus.



(intro/prologue page)


Comments: Unnecessary to repeat title again, so remove it. Why is my name there? What role do I play? The awkward placing of the WWF logo at the corner of the page is weird, so try to text wrap around the logo and there is an orphan word.



So after all those consultations, I came up with these 2 cover page, which I narrowed down to the pink/purple as it looks more alarming for endangered animals rather than the blue which seems more calm and serene.


With that, I came up with my final spreads which were ready to print! Here is the finalised work:



I decided to make tabs for easier readability and had to cut 1cm away from the inner pages for the tabs to be inserted in and it’s a mess as you can see from the above picture. With the remaining half of the vinyl sticker, I made stickers to share with the class, yay!

I printed the letters that is unique to each font but it looks a little messy and hard to read which then made me decide to standardise the font to Times New Roman.



I really like the final outcome of this project. I learnt so much about the different endangered animals and the anatomy of various typefaces.

If I had more time for this project, I would explore further about colouring them and making a larger book so I could include some facts regarding the animals for people to be more aware about saving nature.

All in all, this is a project that I would definitely show people since it was one of the first ever books I made.

That’s all folks!

Project 3: Task 2 – Research and Development

So I continued with my previous idea of “Party with the Arts” onto this project but changed the illustration style.

This is my layout on illustrator:

Here’s how it looks like when folded:

The feedback that I got for this first draft was:

  1. The boombox in the cover page was static and no energy could be felt from it.
  2. The folds were a little awkward too and it might be hard for some to fold it back.
  3. The fireworks page was a little empty, hence I could think about incorporating some pictures there and also, adding a header for the Arts and Health programme.
  4. Incorporate elements of music and art into the headers of Art-on-the-Move and Music-on-the-Move.


So working with the feedback, this is the second draft I came up with.

And here’s the new fold:

The feedback that I got for the second draft was:

  1. The splatters of paint and music notes were very random. I should play around with the size of it.
  2. Frames were too big and taking too much space, making the pictures too small for viewers.
  3. Reduce size of body text and the text wrap for Music-on-the-Move is awkward.
  4. Colour could be brighter and that the teal/turquoise was jarring.
  5. Remove fireworks and instead use bubbles and water droplet shapes to tie the pages of the entire brochure together. (sense of flow)


And here’s 2 of my shortlisted ones for my final work:

  1. Yellow/Orange

2. Blue with Yellow/Orange

In the end I decided to go with the second one (Blue with Yellow/Orange) since the first one (Yellow/Orange) is too boring.


Project 3C: Type as emotion

3C – Type as emotion

Type as emotion made me feel like I am doing “my line is emo” from year 1 again but in a digital format. As such, I begun to think about what I felt if I experienced that emotion and then tried to play with the letters “H E L L O” to express that emotion.
I chose Open Sans as my font since it had a large family.

So starting off, we have BORED as the emotion.



Just a cat/dog’s face and winking + a bored person + a bored person carrying a bag of which I emphasised the “EH” since I was bored when I made these.


I was bored and just played around with the letters and realised it forms the words “LOL” and “HOE” and then so I just put these under the emotion, bored. Please pardon me.


Moving on, this emotion stands alone.


It is the letter “E” being arrogant and wolfing down the other letters, “H, L, L, O”.


Next off, we have depressed.


I thought that hello is actually made up of the word “HELL-o” so why not express it in this emotion? Thus, the first picture. Then I had a suggestion from Shirley of moving the words down to the bottom to signify that one is much more depressed instead of it floating around in the middle of the canvas. Furthermore, I changed the colour to a black background and grey words to showcase the emotion even more.

But soon later, I realised that HELL-o was a little common and many people might also think that way. So instead, I wanted something more special. Usually when you are depressed, you want help but you don’t express it out since it isn’t easy to do so. Moving the letters around and overlapping the “L” and “O” actually forms a letter “P”]


Moving on to the next emotion, it is confused.


I first started off with the emotion, “confused” using different weights of the font. I then changed the arrangement of the letters, keeping only the first and the last letter constant “H” and “O”.

Also, I tried laying black text over the grey text, only showing certain parts of the letter of which might appear confusing to some. But I feel that it is still quite obvious. This particular one could appear as depressed and a whole lot of other emotions too. Hence, I scraped this idea off.

Then,  I tried putting the letters everywhere and rotating them around. But they aren’t confusing enough. So, I realised that I could make it even more confusing by overlapping them and then changing the colour of the overlapped parts to white. Thus, arriving at this, which was my final piece.
(it is hard to even read)


Next off, we have angry.


These are just calling people “HOE” which is mean. But when you are angry, all hell breaks loose so that’s why.

(forgive me)


Then we have something happier compared to the negativity before.


The last picture of excited is the one I chose. It is curved symbolising a rainbow. I made the thickness of the letters increase after every one on purpose to signify the excitement and loudness of this hello.

Here are my final pieces:

Project 3B: Type as pattern

3B – Type as pattern

Type as pattern for me was the hardest one to execute as I had no sense of direction to start off with. So for a start, I just pieced letters together to form a static pattern.

BUT after consultation I realised that they don’t have much sense of rhythm and it looks really flat.

Here’s some of my static patterns:

Alright, so moving on, I worked on my patterns once more and came up with better patterns to work on with a sense of flow, rhythm and hierarchy. Here are those new patterns:

(it’s a lot because some are either incomplete or that I disliked it)

Then comes another consult. I got some advice to tweak some of the patterns a little more to gain more sense of hierarchy and sense of flow. Hence coming up with these works:

With that, I definitely learn hierarchy and flow in a pattern. And that parts of the type’s anatomy could be a pattern!

These are the final works:


Project 3A: Type as image


3A – Type as image


Firstly, I started off making outlines of my favourite character, Totoro from Studio Ghibli. I had no idea where I was going, so I showed Shirley this. She then showed me some of the works her other students did and I realised I should’ve worked with serif fonts instead of san serif. Serif fonts gives you much more dimension (eg thick and thin lines) to work with. With that, I started out trying out a serif font, Pistilli.

Working with Pistili, I cut up the fonts into pieces as you can see on the next photo. I cut and pieced them together forming Wall-e and Eve and I’m so happy it turned out great :”)

So here are some of the things I used for Wall-e and Eve:

(I know it’s a mess)

These are my final works :

That’s all for 3A! 🙂


Project 2: Final Design

Here’s my final design of my poster.


I was happy with my work since I’ve never tried illustrating in this kind of style. I wanted to try something new and I was glad it worked out well for me in the end. I learnt a lot regarding the hierarchy, colour and layout of a poster.

Thanks for reading!