The Wonders of Instagram

The application “Instagram” has been around for quite sometime now. When I first got my Iphone I was unsure and a little weary of how to actually use the app. I was not sure how to crop my photos to fit inside the editing frame, or how to master the effects that allow your pictures to come alive. Since then I have became a huge fan of the app and use it very often to improve the picture quality of my photos and share my memories with friends and family.

This first photo I took in my backyard a couple of weeks ago. I was so excited to see that the Canada geese were finally back from their Winter down south! I took the photo but quickly noticed a few things. For one, you can hardly see the birds, the colours are pretty dull, and you can also see a turned over lawn chair that has been there since the snow started to melt. Image

So I decided to enter the photo into the app to spruce it up a little. First I cropped out the lawn chair. Then I used the effect that allows the birds to be the focal point of the photo, and the background blurred so all the attention is on them. In the first photo, you cannot see the colours of the sunset that is currently happening in the background. With a click of a button I was able to bring back the warm colours into the photo, making it appear a little more inviting. Image

I encourage all of you to try the app for yourself! It is a lot of fun and it also keep tracks of the date that you post photos. You can look back on your album over the year and see how much some of your pictures have really changed.

Emma Pace

Colour Psychology in Marketing


Remember back to when we first took a look at the colour wheel? Well maybe you will recognize the picture above as it was on one of the Power Points from earlier in the semester. It is Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, or just Goethe as you may know him as. In 1810, Goethe published a booked called ‘Theory of Colours’ in which he describes the different colours of the colour wheel and their unconscious psychological impact on humans. Now of course as with any theory there are going to be people who disagree, but with this theory many companies have applied it to their marketing attempts, and more specifically advertising.

According to June Campbell a researcher in the field some of the emotions that certain colours create are:

–          Red – strength, passion, excitement

–          Blue –trust , reliability,

–          Yellow –warmth, happiness

–          Orange –playfulness

–          Green –nature, fresh

–           Purple –royal, Spirituality

–          Pink –soft, sweet, nurture

–          White –pure, clean

–          Black –elegant, seductive, mystery

–          Gold –prestige, expensive

–          Silver –prestige, cold, scientific

Now for the interesting part of all this. Check out some advertisements and websites of companies that have got a lot of money for market research and pay attention to the colours they use. Many times you can notice the use of colour will reflect the emotions that the company is trying to get its customers to feel.

One good example that June gives is the website of the car company Jaguar ( On their site you can notice the silver back ground which indicates prestige and scientific, the writing and accents are black which shows elegant, and the red fonts for excitement. As most people know Jaguar is a luxury car company with some high performance cars which reflects the colours found on the webpage.

This won’t always be the case as trends change in advertising and companies have different budgets for advertising research. Some companies will also stick to their logo colours. Try checking out some different companies that you like and see if the feelings you get from the colours match what is listed above.

For more information about June Campbell’s study check out

-Blaise Theriault

InDesign Help? Have no fear it is here!

So for my co-op placement I wasn’t sure what exactly I would be using for programs so when I was learning InDesign I didn’t pay as close attention to details as I probably should have. Once I talked to the current co-op student I found out that they use InDesign on a frequent basis and make posters daily for different events and upcoming functions. This scared me at first until I started to look for mini practice websites and tutorials so I could prepare myself before starting in a few weeks. This is what I stumbled upon.

This website showed me how to do plain backgrounds and how to make sure the color bled out once it was printed onto actual paper.

This tutorial showed me how to do wrap around letters when it came to texts.

The formatting is the part I find most difficult knowing what size or what format you need for different jobs. This step by step explanation made it “dumb down” for me. After viewing these tutorials I knew that I was prepared for whatever my job placement throws at me for projects.  These tutorials and tips certainly did not teach me everything but once I actually tried them out I found each website useful for different reasons. As well often there are multiple links that refer you to other websites.

Good Advertising at its Finest


Advertising is used for two things, leaving a lasting impression on its audience and for sending a message to its target audience. I have chosen to analyze this advertising piece to see if they left a lasting impression on me and if they sent a message clearly to me as well. There are lots of advertisements that don’t do a good job and the reason you know this is you simply don’t remember them. Simple as that! If you don’t remember their advertisement or don’t relate the product or service to their advertisement they did not accomplish the task they need too. Now in the case of this advertisement the elements of good design are clearly displayed, the design is colorful but organized and is visually appealing. The words are bolded so that they stand out slightly compared to the background and draw the reader into the main message. The alignment is used in an interesting but organized fashion as well.  The advertisement des not have very much white space but I feel for this specific advertisement it was not needed. The overall color scheme works and uses proper contrast to give sustenance to the ad. The meaning is shown very clearly through out the advertisement; we know what they are trying to sell and how it is supposed to make us feel. It not only send a direct message it hold meaning behind it which gives us as the audience a feeling or emotion behind the product, so we almost feel connected. Now when deciding whether or not I should purchase their product I know I will relate it to this advertisement, so this is how I know they have accomplished good advertising for their product.

Boston Pizza and the Panookie


So, a friend and I went to Boston Pizza a couple nights ago. Boston Pizza has recently redone their menu, and I think they have done a fabulous job. The imagery, typography, and colour choices all work together and create a great looking, visually appealing menu. I also noticed that they not only made their menus look fantastic, they also translated this look and feel to their stand-up cards on the tables.

This card here, I find was designed very well, and used all of the CRAP principles we’ve learned over the course of this semester. One thing they utilized well is the white space. In most cases I find, a lot of white space can end up being over-kill and make designs look washed out or hard to look at. I find, however, Boston Pizza cleverly used the excessive white space to work in their favour. They achieved a great looking table stand up card thing, and chose some catchy words with a catchy font. They hooked me! I ended up getting the Panookie.

When looking at the CRAP principles, they’ve hit all four. Contrast: you’ve got the white space, dark text, and crisp images to stand out from the background. Repetition: the same find is consistent across the card. Alignment: The elements of the card are aligned so that they eye can move easily across the card and see everything. Positioning: The text, cookie, and mug are cleverly placed, and if you use the rule of thirds, the text, cookie, and coffee mug are placed on the lines.

Anyway, just a well designed table card for you.


Mirror’s Edge: Leading with Colour

2189_mirror_s_edge_23BAM! Right hook! Right in the jaw!

Okay, so, aside from the awesome concept art, guess what we’re going to talk about today!

No, no, not Japan again, I promise!


Just kidding, just kidding!!

Today, we’re back to talking about colour and more to the point; how a video game managed to base its entire concept around leading the player in a parkour environment with colour!!

Now, before we begin, I want you to do me a favour! See this image file right here? U+2193.svg

That’s right, right here —>Mirror__s_Edge_20_by_HDspring
I want you to click it! Go ahead, I’ll wait!

Now, once the image is loaded, just admire it! And we’re admiring, and we’re admiring… this, is Mirror’s Edge! Notice how for the most part, everything looks very white and very clean! Though, notice the coloured elements everywhere; that’s the contrast kicking in. I actually steers the eyes towards the colour because of the contrast to the white. Though, notice how the red is much ‘louder’ than the other colours… don’t worry, we’ll get to that. For now, some background info!


Rats! The Fuzz!

Set in a dystopian totalitarian society, this game follows Faith (as pictured); a runner. A runner is someone who delivers sensitive information to those who need it (for use against the government), but without getting seen by the cameras and officers that lurk below. The solution? Go over their head, literally!

As previously stated, this game follows parkour elements to allow you to complete your goals and it actually uses colours to direct your eye on where to go!Subway-1-mirrors-edge-2064597-799-450 Red is the main colour used as it stands out the best, but other colours such as nice oranges, yellows, greens and blues are used to guide the character in the right direction! In sort, you always know where to go because the colours -show- you the way because your eyes are attracted to said colours! Isn’t that awesome!

Here, I got a video to illustrate my point! Please watch, if not for the visual representation, bur for the amazing music!

Thanks for watching!

– Stephen

Words and images that show humanity

Recently I found the absolutely amazing blog,

HONY is a blog by a photographer who travels through New York City, especially Central Park and Harlem, and takes portraits of the people he sees, often including quotes and anecdotes.

In terms of a modern successful blog, I really think HONY hits the mark.  Not only is the design clean and easy to use, but you can get lost in it – in a good way!  There may have been a research paper that was postponed to do some digging last night!

I think a goal of the modern blogger (as opposed to the postmodern and victorian ones??) is to have a sense of personality or style with your posts, and HONY has achieved that.  Open minded and honest, the portraits and quotes paint pictures from the mundane to the fantastic.

When we talk about design and about concept, I think this is a great example of a concept (go out and talk to strangers and see what happens) that has paid off for the blogger (who’s about to release his first art book!) and for the reader.  There’s a humanity in the blog that shines.  There’s no reason for extravagant headings and loud colours in the website layout because it’s all about the people themselves rather than the blogger.

I really urge everyone to check it out, because I think it’s a great example of a concept that can easily be done (start taking picture of interesting people) but has been executed to a much broader human scope.

Web Design Says a lot About a Company


Web design is definitely an under rated advertising tool for many companies. Many local businesses seem to creativity in this area and have very dull and uninteresting websites. The thing that a lot of businesses don’t realize about this is that it actually can reflect the business. I know that for my creative brief I took a look at Flagstone Business Interiors and their website. The company sells new furniture with all the most popular styles but by looking at their website you would have no idea. Actually someone might even think that they are no longer a business that’s how outdated the web layout appears.

Although many businesses do a horrible job at this many of the bigger companies, with higher budgets have incredible websites that really reflect their product and mission. The picture I have chosen is from the website of the car company Bugatti, and for anyone who doesn’t know Bugatti was the former creator of the fastest, stylish, and most innovative production car in the world. While looking through their site I could really see the innovation just through the layout they have. The front page is a picture of their newest addition to the Bugatti family and a list of all the other cars they build. After you click on any of the links it sends you to a page full of pictures that are in a slide show sort of format that really show the little details of the cars and actually how innovative and stylish they actually are.

Now back to Flagstone. At no point while searching through their website do you really even know the exact products they sell or all of the services they provide, whereas Bugatti had every little detail one would want to know before doing business with them except for the $2,250,000 price tag. So obviously budget is going to be big factor in how well the website is put together but that doesn’t mean it should be out dated and give a wrong impression, because at the end of the day it says a lot about it a company.


Grand Day

I thought I would re-look at the poster I made for Cobequid and explain how I had came up with the design.



I used Adobe photoshop cs6. First off the Grand Day logo had Cobequids logo on it so I had to cut  that out because I wanted to use Cobequids full logo at the top of the page.

To achieve the long orange rectangle, all I did was use the shape tool and made a simple rectangle and filled that in the with orange that is used on their website. I chose to have a long rectangle on the side to simulate the website and have that connection between the two pieces.

The only other colour I chose to use was the purpely blue font which i pulled from the Grand Day logo using the eye dropper tool, to insure I had a proper match. I didn’t want to have too much information on the poster because people probably wouldn’t look at it.

I was attempting to make it look youthful, so it would appeal to a younger demograhpic to inspire more youth volunteers signing up for the event. I think I achieved this well, only think I wish I did differently would be to add slightly more colour and a little less text. Even though the text is plentyful or overwhelming. I feel that youth might be drawn to more bullet point information rather than chunks. Any thoughts?

-Emily L.

Which would you eat?


How appealing does this look? Maybe it isn’t if you’re a healthy person. The fast food industry does anything possible when it comes to selling their products. They will go to great lengths to promote their products to ensure the business gains and maintains consumers. It’s a tad unfortunate that when you order a burger, it never looks like it does in the ad.

It likely took hours of Photoshop and planning to get his photo looking print ready. As students, it’s important for us to be media literate and recognize when we are being misled due to marketing tactics. The designer made the burger look great by touching up the colors and rounding out the edges. It’s literally a perfect burger with minor imperfections.

The real versus fake image reminds me of doing our creative brief. It looks like someone took the real burger and re-worked it in Photoshop. The intended message is one to create brand and product consistency. Every store we go to, we should be able to order the same thing. Photoshop allows for the product to look appealing and visual in order to gain sales and consumerism.