Colour / Texture / Shape

May 7, 2014 § Leave a comment

Upon the rough completion of my first diagram, I ventured into colour experimentation, looking into altering opacity and blend modes, like I’d done with the map. Many of the blend modes had ill effects on my design, or rather didn’t give me the effect I desired. Instead, I realised that dropping the opacity to 50% gave me the best results, and with the right layering it worked well. I ordered the layering by the most intrusive data/colour at the bottom, and the least at the top, so the colours would be apparent, with minimal overlapping.

Next I looked at different shape possibilities, I didn’t really want to use the pointy design, as I felt this was too textbook like, it looked too serious, though it does represent my data the most accurately. I wanted to soften the edges, so the design had more of a flow to it, so I used the rounding tool in Illustrator to gain this effect, a style I was particularly fond of. I also tried out both of these styles in a more direct way, by this I mean cutting out all the inbetween colour, that doesn’t really mean anything, it simply connects the data, though I felt the diagram was then lacking, in comparison to the full bodied look the other diagrams had. I decided the smooth rounded data curve worked best, and would progress with this.

Joe suggested I look into the symbols and icons that make up maps, and possibly integrating this into my work, so I looked at Ordinance Survey maps, and their legends to see what symbols their were to offer. Here’s a link to the PDF I referenced from to attain to designs I created. I looked at creating recurring patterns  with the symbols, but with some I’d only use segments of the original symbol style to gain the pattern. I also had the notion that I could use these symbols somewhere else in my design work, such as my own key/legend.
After creating several test patterns, I overlayed them onto my design to see how they looked, however, I felt the designs looked far too busy, and lost their sleek look they had going, for these reasons I abandoned the use of patterns and textures.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 14.12.43

Here you can see my experimemtation with blend modes, opacity, layering, and shape styles.

A segment of an OS map of Keswick, demonstrating the use of patterns, texture and colour of symbols

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 14.13.11

Recreations of OS map symbols

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 14.13.46

Patterns created from some of the symbols

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 14.13.55

… and some more, looking at orientation and direction

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 14.15.02

Different styles I could use, looking at fill, stroke, shape, and pattern

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