the idiosyncratic musings of a designer

Three Cars, Three Images

There is only so much you can do without proper internet, so whilst I am trying not to use all the dongle allowance I was playing about with illustrator.

A Focus ST


BTCC BMW 1 Series


BTCC Honda Civic (similar to one I did 2 years ago)


Weekend Mock Ups

I did something I haven’t done in a long while this weekend, some illustration type things on my computer. It has been a while but it was still fun.

The first thing I did, whilst watching Skyfall on DVD was a C30. I tried to keep everything quite clean. It is still a work in progress as you can see.Image

The next thing I did was take three side on views of cars and then to draw them using only a single line. It worked and here they are. An A3 Sportback, a Leon and a Golf.



Just a small post to say that for the time being my website ( is currently down.

It does need a little bit of updating done to it, but overall I was and still are quite happy with it.

Watch this space for when it’ll be back.








In an attempt to keep creativity up at the weekends and do more personal projects, I have decided to show and detail part of my flat. A mundane subject yes, but it also gets me back into the habit of trying to keep adding posts.

Below you can see the corner of my living room in my flat. I have then highlighted everything and listed what everything (almost) is. I am not quite sure what this has to do with creativity. Maybe keeping my skills sharp.


  1.  Grundig TV
  2.  Strange metal wire lamp which came with the flat
  3.  MacBook Pro (15” 2.2GHz Intel Core i7)
  4.  Box of playing cards
  5.  A plant
  6.  Box of Dominoes
  7.  PS3 Dualshock 3 Controller
  8.  O2 Mobile Internet Dongle
  9.  Moleskine (waiting to be opened and used)
  10.  Corduroy laptop case
  11.  750GB Iomega external hard drive
  12.  Apple TV
  13.  Apple Remote
  14.  PS3
  15.  Little Big Planet and Gran Turismo 5 Acacemy Edition
  16.  Giant wooden clothes peg
  17.  Lino print of a bird
  18.  Plant which came with the flat


Doing creative things in the flat (namely on my laptop) is quite difficult. I like to work at a desk but there isn’t one. Also, I like to work on my iMac, but I don’t have that in Leeds with me, so the view in the picture is what I am normally faced with when using my laptop (excluding when it is attached to the Apple TV). The dining table isn’t really suited to working at so I tend not to do anything apart from eat there.


One of the main issues which my final year project, 夜間night*, tried to solve was young people using their mobile phone too much in bed and not getting enough sleep. There was a sense all through out the project that it could be taken further on the software side of things. I was massively disappointed when my idea for an accompanying application could not be made due to iOS developer limitations. This led to the shelving of the application idea and the focus remained on the physical project.

Recently, in an attempt to get back into the way of thinking, I decided to revisit the idea of a software based 夜間night* but look at it from a different angle. Taking the computer as the main focus and the application I blogged about a while ago, f.lux, I wanted to combine the two to envisage what I am calling 夜間night*mode.

Computer screens are generally bad for your eyes. However, this is more apparent at night when the ambient light is lower and the stark blue light from the computer screen can cause eye strain. F.lux gives the screen warmer tones, matching it more to the artificial lighting found in your home (my f.lux setting at the moment is the equivalent of halogen or 3400k).

夜間night*mode expands the idea of f.lux into what I would imaging being a feature built into computer operating systems. Not only would it change the colour temperature of the screen, but it would make a whole host of visual changes to the computer to make it easier on they eye, which would subsequently help reduce eye strain and help the user get to sleep.

Even though this is just a concept and the result of an afternoon of work, it does provide an endless scope of possibilities to take 夜間night* and turn it into something that will actually be of use to someone. Additionally, with the launch of iOS6 and ‘Do Not Disturb’ there may be a renewed possibility of making a mobile application more relating to my project once more. But that is for another time as I have another personal project that is in the sidelines waiting to be completed.

A full write up can be found on the project page I made for it on behance (click here or on the image below).

More Illustrator Practice

Practicing being an Illustrator.

Hooray! It’s actually a new post!

It might not really be something worth shouting about but I haven’t really had much to write about over the past month from getting back from New Designers in London. What I have decided to do is to finally get to know Adobe Illustrator better than I already do. In order of proficiency of the three main Creative Suite applications used in design, I am most comfortable with Photoshop, competent with Illustrator and a relative novice (in comparison to others) with InDesign.

Below are some examples that I have ended up creating through the use of tutorials. I haven’t reached the point yet where I want to go out and try something new from scratch, but that time will come soon.

New Designers 2012: A Picture Summary

It has been about a week since New Designers finished in London. It was a very mixed week. Not only was it very long, but it went by very quickly. I am still feeling the repercussions of it. I still have no idea what the day or date is. I am going to wait to write a proper written summary of what happened. I spoke to a lot of people about my project, but I am still letting it all sink in, and hopefully get a job soon.

On one hand New Designers marked the end of University life. It was a more natural end than the degree show at the end of May because it tried to give a helping hand for our futures. The other hand says differently, it is the beginning of our professional careers. More on that when I get around to writing a proper summary of it. In the mean time, here is a picture summary of the 8 days and 7 nights spent down in the hustle and bustle.

I would like to point out that these pictures are not exclusively of New Designers. Some are from other small escapades throughout the week.

Day 1: The Pendolino in Euston.

Day 1: South Bank

Day 1: Big Ben

Day 2: Waiting to get in to the Business Design Centre set up.

Day 2: Setting up. This was taken pretty much just as soon as everything was taken out of the van.

Day 2: A rather empty looking exhibition space. This would change massively in the next 48 hours.

Day 2: Floor down and walls up. Just cabinets and tables to erect.

Day 2: DJCAD University of Dundee. That’s us.

Day 3: With the Hilton right next door to the Business Design Centre, these three lovelies were constantly there to be ogled.

Day 3: A Mr Brown looking rather pleased. The space was almost completely finished.

Day 3: The almost completed exhibition space. All the exhibitors had arrived by this point.

Day 3: The new London Bus.

Day 3: The space is getting its finishing touches applied.

Day 4: Audi R8, Nissan Munaro and BMW 7 Series out of hotel window.

Day 4: Project set up awaiting the opening of New Designers.

Day 4: Business cards ready and waiting.

Day 4: Interview

Day 4: One of the nicest projects on display.

Day 4: Starting to get busier.

Day 4: A lot busier once it opened to industry and premium paying public.

Day 4: Mr Browns Bear.

Day 4: A sauve looking Robin on opening night.

Day 5: One of the actual times when we had free time to ourselves. The official opening of the Shard with light and laser display. A little disappointing but it was hoaching along the riverside.

Day 6: More free time meant that a little more could be explored. The Emirates Sky Ride had not long opened, so it was visited.

Day 6: Hello London.

Day 6: Some of the best weather we had all week.

Day 7: Fiona and Alasdair.

Day 7: Debbie’s eye. By this point it was within an hour or so of ending and everyone was knackered from standing about for the past few days.

Day 7: Despite four days of being played with, all the products lasted.

Day 7: Our stand was next to the entrance. This was one of the greeting sign plinths.

Day 7: It had taken us two days to build everything but only 90 minutes to take everything down again.

Day 8: Went to Camden whilst waiting for the train.

Day 8: Standing in Euston holding the box that was carrying the project. The F1 was on so I made the use of a good 3G signal and watched most of it in the station and on the train home. This was whilst almost everyone else watched the tennis.

That’s What I Wanted To Do… Sort of…

Whilst keeping track of one of many available liveblogs last night regarding the Apple keynote at the WWDC in San Francisco, something caught my attention. Actually almost everything I found interesting, but one thing in particular reminded me a lot of what I wanted to do for my fourth year university project.

One of the features touted when previewing iOS 6 was what I wanted to have done as an add on for my project. ‘Do Not Disturb’, a new feature for iOS 6 coming this autumn, basically mutes and sends calls straight to voicemail between certain user defined times of night. It will only let through those who you want to let through.

This is basically what I wanted to have done with an app as a companion to my project. I wanted it to basically turn on airplane mode after half an hour of being in the product and then it would turn airplane mode off when it was time to wake up. This was not possible with the API’s of the software developer kit so the idea was shelved.

However, this one would maybe be just as good as a companion. I know I’ll use it when the new operating system is ready to download.

One of the features of iOS 6 from

DJCAD Degree Show Opening Night Pictures

The Duncan Of Jordanstone College of Art and Design (DJCAD) degree show officially opened on Friday night (the 18th). Due to the sheer amount of people I found it difficult to go around taking pictures of other exhibits so sticking to our own space, here is some photos from the Product Design/Digital Interaction Design space.

My project set up ready for demonstration and viewing.

One of the key design features of the exhibition space. The light bulbs give a unique atmosphere.

Andrew Tibbles with his project called The Aquatic Grave. Sorry about the reflection.

Thomas Marriner sitting atop of Brian, the project of Robin Burns

The cabinets showing part of the design process everyone went through, ranging from research, through design and on to technology.

Jarred Shirley talking to Debbie Reid.

The PD/DiXD space before it was too busy.

Demonstrating the Acoustic DJ by Robbie Butler (shown on left of photograph).

Alasdair Gauld demonstrating Robbie Butlers project, Acoustic DJ

Visitors viewing all the work.

Everyone in conversation and enjoying all the projects on display.

John Paul O’Connors project: The Return of the Circus

Laurie Veitch was providing music throughout the evening.

The art school from the window of the Graphic Design degree space.


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