I realize that I never wrote about last Thursday (2/12/2015). When I got to the office EVERYONE was there. Usually there are more people in the office on Thursdays then on Mondays, but I have never been there when basically every employee was there. Everyone was in crunch mode, frantically working on things and talking on the phone. It seemed like everyone was very busy and stressed out and I did not want to get in anyones way, so I sat down at the long table, started working on my own project (the Wishers and Dreamers website) and waited for a moment when either Paige, Natale or Keifer looked not completely absorbed in their work and/or got off the phone. After a few minutes of listening to the conversations I realized that the date to launch the Food Business School’s website was the next day.
Throughout the two and a half hours that I was there, I heard several complaints about how their projects and launches always came down to the last minute and how everyone always got stressed out the last few days before a big deadline. I for one, would never get anything done if I did not feel stress or pressure. I actually think that I am most creative and focused under time pressure. If I am given unlimited time then I will take much more time than needed to make decisions and then eventually lose interest or have the entire project already thought out in my mind and feel like there is no point in actually creating it. This summer I learned a lot about what motivates me and how I can get work done when I attended the Rhode Island School of Design pre-college program. Its basically an intro to what a first quarter of art school would be like. I took 4 classes and each class was 6 to 7 hours long and had about 30 hours of work a week. You may do the math and see that there was very little time for sleep and other activities. My hardest two classes were on Mondays and Tuesdays and almost every Monday and Tuesday morning of the summer I was most productive between 1 am and 7 am when I realized that I only had 6 more hours left to finish the project for my 8 am class. I am not one who usually procrastinates, but rather I work more slowly and take more time to think about what I am doing when I feel like I have more time left to complete the tasks. Although there is something to be said for planning ahead, managing your time down to the hour and taking time to think out decisions, I do strongly believe that some of the best design decisions are made on instinct hours before a deadline.
About 20 minutes after I arrived Paige called me over to her desk and asked me to put together the final printable copies of some business cards for another company that were also due around the same time. She wanted both cards to be in Gothic Book font and to have the indicated black background and blue text. Here is a visual:
Seems simple right? NOPE! In the midst of the crunch to put the final touches on the Food Business School website, Paige gave me very complicated instructions for how she wanted it done and then followed with: don’t stress if you do it wrong! (I’m pretty sure she thought I wasn’t going to be able to do it right but I did). Paige uploaded the front of the businesses card (the black part), the two backs (one for each of the two employees), the same color chart as above and the font to a drop box folder. I opened the black side of the card in Illustrator (most designers use the computer program Adobe Illustrator to edit and create graphics), found the right color from the color pallet and changed the colors. Then I saved this document as an ai file (a type of file that can be opened in Illustrator). When designers send anything with words on it to a fancy printer, they have to convert the editable type into a vector, or a shape (this is called converting the type to outlines). They have to do this because if the computer printing the words reads it as editable type, it will print the words as if they were type and not as if they were a shape. This is bad because if the computer does not have the correct font, then it will print it in a different font and because the edges of the type won’t be as crisp because of pixelation. The problem with converting the text to outlines is that, once it has been converted to a shape, you can no longer edit the text. To avoid this problem, I saved a version with editable text as an ai file, then converted the text to outlines and then saved the outlines version as an eps file (another type of file that can be opened in Illustrator). After that, I saved the outlines version as a pdf file (a small, uneditable file that almost anyone can open and that can be sent easily by email). I did the same process for the other side of the card (the one with the content about the employees) except my computer did not have the font that Paige wanted them in so I had to download the new font. Paige’s computer runs a really old version of Illustrator (her version is called CS4) so I had to convert all of the ai and eps files into CS4 versions of the files so she could open them. Finally, I created a drop box account, uploaded all of the files and sent her a link to the folder. I already knew how to do all of the things I needed to do on Illustrator so I only had to figure out how to use dropbox.
I also opened the Wishers and Dreams web site for the first time on Thursday! Here are some screen shots for what the website looks like right now (before I edited anything).
I will post screenshots when I am mostly done with with the site. On Monday I did not go to Veneer because it was a holiday and no one was in the office today (Thursday) so this week I am working on the Wishers and Dreamers website.