Using all this new software is crazy…

You really need to practice the software to be able to create digital art.  It is frustrating in that you have to start with the basics as opposed to just being able to draw something.  It took me forever to figure out how I was going to draw an acorn and a leaf to help create a Fall theme for this week’s banner assignment.  THen I realized that I had to just break it down and think about the shapes. So I googled pictures of leaves and acorns.  The acorn I just tried to copy a digital image I saw online and for the leaf, I imported a picture of a real leaf and traced it with the pen tool in Fireworks.  I then played with different textures to try to get a realistic look.  So here are what the first drafts of my two banners look like:

I personally prefer the first image.  I like that the colors are vibrant.  I wanted to recreate a kaleidoscope feel.  I focused on creating one half of the image and used shadows to give a more 3D feel.  Once I was satisfied with the the one side, I copied the image and used to software to flip it – create a mirror image.  I definitely learned how to create some shortcuts for myself.  I wish I was as comfortable with creating my first webpage…I guess I have to just keep practicing.


The Fake Resume!

We’ve been working on an online resume, and while it is not my real resume, it has been interesting to see this come together.  We had to base a color scheme
off of a picture we liked, which I then uploaded to the Kuler website.  The site took colors from the image to create a color scheme.  Using Kuler to create the scheme was interesting and easy.

I have to admit that while Stargazer Lilies are my favorite flower, that I am not crazy about the scheme.  If I had taken more time in the picture choice I probably would have picked another color scheme – the picture we have taken or a work we created.  But here is the a page.

While this is a real basic page, it is encouraging to see immediate results.  I didn’t think that after 3 weeks, I’d make this much progress!

My First Web Page (aka Week 2 Summary)

Well, creating a page was a little easier than I thought.  Once you practice using the code and get a feel for things, it’s not so bad.  I say this, but I made a very, very, very basic page.  It reminds me of math, you have to be very specific with your coding-following the formulas to get what you want.  I downloaded a free text editor, Text Wrangler (the icon is to the right), to help write the coding for the page.  This also really helped me understand how the internet really works.  You read about it in a book and understand that it is an exchange of files from one server to your computer, but actually making a webpage really helps you see how much work goes into making a website.

We also spent a lot of time reading about color.  I love everything about color – nothing inspires me more than colors.  So this topic was also very interesting to me.  I had used Adobe Kuler for a previous class, but reading about different color schemes in our book helped me to understand how to put Kuler to better use.  I find this class very interesting so far and am excited to keep learning.

Week 1 Summary

For the very first week of my web design class, I had to read two articles.  The first article, A Brief History of Markup, discusses the history of the language of the world-wide web.  There are have been many incarnations of HTML (HyperText Markup Language) which is the language used for websites.  There are so many acronyms that are used that it can be a little hard to follow, especially if no do not have a technical background on this topic.  Here are some  of the terms and the history:

IETF – Internet Engineering Task Force.  This is the group that first published HTML2.0, which is the first incarnation of HTML.  There never was an HTML1.

W3C – World Wide Web Consortium.This organization took the place of the IETF after this initial publication of HTML2.0.  Many revisions took place until HTML4.01 was published in 1994.

XHTML – This was a stricter markup language that required publishers to follow rules that W3C was using as a “best practice”.  Once XHTML1.1 was published, this created some issues with compatibility with Internet Explorer.  Being that this was the most popular web browser at the time, this was a big deal.  So the W3C decided to correct this with XHTML2.0 and thus created a divide within their group.

WHATWG – Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group was formed as a result of the dissatisfaction.  They started working on HTML5 while W3C worked on XHTML2.0.  Eventually the W3C decided that the work being done by WHATWG would be the basis for the future of HTML and that the charter for XHTML2.0 would not be renewed.

HTML5 is the version currently being worked on and is proposed to be ready for recommendation by 2022!

The second article for this week’s module, FTP Frequently Asked Questions, was a little less confusing.  This article explained, essentially, how information is exchanged between computers.  This article also helped me understand terms I see everyday but did not understand, just as the video lecture for this week’s module.  


MIlton Glaser

I may be one of the few people on earth who did not know who Milton Glaser is…I was recently checking out a sale dedicated to his prints, etc on when I decided to dig a little deeper.  I googled him and came upon his website, which is where I learned that he established his design company in NYC in 1974 (the year I was born).  This man has been designing for 37 years!

Looking at his company’s work, I realized that I have seen his work in my everyday
world without realizing it was him.  Being a novice/occasional knitter, I’ve bought the Lion Brand Yarn for which Glaser’s company has designed the label.  I remember noticing when they changed the design thinking how much better it looked. Here is some more of his work….


Design is everywhere…book covers, albums, magazines, print ads, bags, packaging, toys, beer bottle, T-shirts.  It draws us into things.  You pick up that book because of the cover, you want to listen to that unfamiliar band because of the album art, you buy that eyeshadow palette you don’t need because it’s pretty.  It is the art of the everyday world.


I am obsessed with Pinterest!  I know this has probably been around awhile, but it is a new discovery for me.  I love collecting images – I’ve done it since childhood.  I’d flip through magazines (Elle and Vogue) and cut out pictures of models or clothes I thought were beautiful.  I learned to draw from these pictures, trying to make portraits of the models.  I would trace an outline of their faces and then practice shading – until I eventually forced myself to practice without tracing.

Even as an adult I have a cork board in my home “office” with magazine clippings that I’ve collected – I might like the way light is reflected in an ad for a vase or the art direction of a high end fashion ad.  I have folders filled with things that are inspiration for ideas I want to work on.

Pinterest makes this so much easier!  I often find things online that I bookmark or download the image to a folder in my computer.  Now with a click on the “pin it” button that Pinterest had me add to  my browser bar I can add it and group it according to interest! For instance, I am obsessed with tiles right now because I want to create a “backsplash” in my kitchen.  I want something beautiful and creative, so i have been collecting images and created a “tiles” board on Pinterest!