Category Archives: Fun Fun Fun

Recycling Advert

I came across this video on Youtube whilst I was doing research. Forgot how charming it was for a government advert!


Cheap Pop Song

I have no idea what the lyrics to this song are so I hope they are okay! I had to post it because the Elmo finger at 0:50 seconds is simply wonderful. It was made by Rhett Dashwood, a graphic designer who is currently the Director of Wade Studios in Melbourne, Australia. His personal online portfolio has a really clean look and his work is very sharp – particularly his show-reel for Wade.


Good Branding > Funny Signs

I was at a farm shop one day over the summer for lunch; I really liked how they had branded the entire the shop in a fun way, by taking the farm aspect to excess. So much so that it even continues to the toilets as you can see below! I remember I took these photo’s just because I thought the signs were funny. They are actually relevant to my current advertising and branding module however.

They how the little details can contribute to your overall personality. Whilst the farmshop that was very serious about fresh, free-range produce they were not serious and dull about their communication of it – they were playful and astute. It was clear they were professional but they could have a fun too.

The photograph below was taken in Bowness when I was down at the Lake Distritct. I remember thinking how it had a much nicer tone that the usual “NO FOOD OR DRINK”.

You can almost imagine the disaster in your head – it’s visual. You feel sorry for them because something bad actually happened – it’s a precaution that’s based on experience (not just a speculative one). The “please, please” sounds like they are begging you, but in an exaggerated way where it sounds childish; making it amusing. This sign gives the shop a “voice” which speaks to the customer before they have even came inside. It’s a nice voice speaking a serious message but in a good attitude. I think it’s a small but good example of branding.

Home-made Sketchbook


I made this sketchbook over the summer with some leftover paper I had kicking about. The stitching style is “coptic stitch” – I had to learn it for one of my book projects whilst I was at college. There are loads of tutorials on youtube for it but you can go to places like Owl and Lion who do bookbinding workshops. I went to one over the summer holidays and it was quite good although there are still some parts I struggle with – just practice needed I guess!

If you are a Dundee University student you can go to a free bookbinding class on Thursday in the Union (Carnegie Suite) at 7pm. It is being run by the Dundee University Arts Society who run lots of different events like this every year. It sounds really good and I am very disappointed that I cannot make it. You can follow the society on Facebook and Twitter.

The Price Of Design

In a recent lecture my tutor talked about the amount of time we spent on our projects and how we can relate them to the ‘real world’. Keeping a project time sheet is one way of doing this as it lets you see how much time you spent working on it. This was a practice that I was encouraged to pick up in college (I went to the Glasgow Metropolitan College before coming to DJCAD). My tutor there told us to note down what time we started working, to the minute, and what time we finished. If we stopped for a break or to chat to someone we had to deduct it from our hours. Keeping track of my time like this soon made me realize just how much time sauntering off for a coffee took… It also encouraged me to work more because I wanted to earn more. Our tutor told us that we were on an imaginary £50 an hour so I often found myself working half of my lunch break to earn another £25!

The novelty of the imaginary wages barely lasted a full project but the practice of the time sheet has stayed with me. I often keep two pages free in my sketchbooks to note down the time I spend working on the project. I also briefly write down what I was doing as well, eg. research, computer. I will admit however that they often flag towards the end and the last few days very rarely get recorded. I am going to put a big sign above my desk though when I get back up to Dundee.  I did this when I was doing my Graded Unit at college because it was part of the brief that we had an accurate time sheet.

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In fact, using my completely complete, accurate Graded Unit time sheet I am going to calculate how much the project would have cost. My tutor at DJCAD gave us a guide for doing this so I’m going to test it out:

  1. Okay so I would like to earn say, £25,000 (the average graduate starting salary)

  2. Divided by 1000, this is £25 so that’s my hourly rate.

  3. From Wednesday the 31st March 2010 to Thursday 29th April 2010 I spent 162 hours (and five minutes but i’ll let that go) on the project. Multiplied by £25 this is £4050.00

  4. I would have had to rent a studio so that would have roughly cost £300 for that month plus say another £100 for bills. I remember spending a fortune on my graded unit materials for things like paper, mounting board, printing, getting my book made so I am going to put £200 for materials as well.

  5. I am not too sure about calculating depreciation but say my laptop, printer, camera and adobe software all came to £3200. They have a life span of say three years so I divide that by 900. So depreciation works out at £3.50 per day.

  6. So £4050 + £600.00 + (£3.50 × 30) £105 = £4755.00

  7. Added to this is 12% for my pension and 20% for insurance and other payments (as I am working freelance) So: £4755.00 + £570.60 + £951.00 = £6276.60

Wow. Firstly I cannot believe how much time I spent on the project! It was a thirty day project so multiplied by twelve this is three hundred and sixty. I spent one hundred and sixty two hours working on it which is forty five percent of my time. At the time, I felt as though my graded unit had taken over my life but that doesn’t actually seem like that much time? Although, I did have two part time weekend jobs so maybe it was!

What surprises me more however is that, multiplying this month long project by eleven (say I had a month’s holidays a year) it comes to £50,105. I only earn £25,000 of this which means that running costs equal the full salary of a freelancer! In fact, I’m forgetting that the running costs would still apply for the twelfth month! This is all of course just speculation but it gives me some idea of the actual cost of design. (I wonder how long I can stay at university?)