Pur Gum “Zero-G”

This Pur Gum concept was a project to create a new anti-nausea ginger chewing gum. My target demographic was young, casual flyers, anyone 20-35 who travels occasionally for business or vacations, might have a young family, and may experience nausea while flying. I also wanted the consumer to consider buying the gum – even if they have no issues flying. So promoting the flavor and having an eye-catching design were high priorities.

I thought a space themed gum would be fun to work with. After some sketching, peer feedback, and several iterations, Zero-G took shape. The wrappers are supposed to represent different planetary bodies, from Mercury to Neptune and would show through the package through a window in the “O” of Zero-G.

I used Adobe Illustrator to create the files and created a dieline to cut out the packaging with a laser cutter. The target-like shapes in the upper left corner of this image were used to make adjustments to the laser. Since the packaging was small and the hole cutout for the planets to show through the “O” needed to be precise, I had to make tiny adjustments to make sure the laser cut precisely in the right place. The wrappers were much easier to cut, though it took some trial and error to get the precise measurement of the gum height/length so the sticks would fit snugly in the package.

The final steps of scoring and folding everything was the easiest part, though time consuming. Despite my best efforts, the printer ink created creases when I scored the boxes. This was easily edited out in Photoshop after I did the photography.

Book Covers

I love to read. I enjoy nonfiction biographies and science/nature books, but speculative fiction books have been my favorite since I first learned. Reading wasn’t easy for a young boy with a learning disability. But I was drawn to comic books and stories of horror, sci-fi, and fantasy. They kept my attention when other things couldn’t and I would visit the library or plunder my brother’s extensive mass market paperback collection. By the time I was in 5th grade, I was reading at a much higher level and did my first book report on Stephen King’s “It,” a 1,138 page horror novel.

Book design has always fascinated me so for my spring project, I decided to put my graphic design skills to the test and redesign covers for some of my favorite novels.

The Martian Chronicles

Parable of the Sower

 

AC Design

Abbey Creek

Abbey Creek Vineyard and Winery is a family owned business that originally sold their grapes to other wineries before the current proprietor Bertony Faustin created their first label in 2008. Started by his Haitian immigrant parents, Bertony’s family continues to put their heart and soul into the entire process of creating wine.

Original Abbey Creek bottle design

Original Abbey Creek bottle design

I thought Abbey Creek’s current wine labels had a nice, simple design. Though they had an air of luxury, the bottles were far from eye-catching. I took the family-owned aspect into consideration as I brainstormed new ideas for bottle designs. I wanted to capture the homegrown, northwest spirit of Abbey Creek. I tried to explore this direction in some of my early sketches.

Early sketches for Abbey Creek bottles

Early bottle sketches

I liked the concept of using the label as a map that wrapped around the bottle, forming a river down the side and tried to explore it in different ways. After some critique from my classmates and some quick work in Illustrator, I made a prototype label to wrap around a bottle and see how it looked. 

label prototype

Early prototype of the map label

The river looked good wrapped around a bottle, but I wanted to make it look more natural. The original idea of having the Abbey and Creek split across the river wasn’t reading well, so I moved it over to one side. I found a typeface that was very similar and matched the spirit of my theme. I opted to remove the circular logo after some thought. As a student project, I had this luxury. It was my belief that the name “Abbey Creek” stacked on the bottle side was recognizable to returning customers.

I worked further on the map illustration in Photoshop. If I’d had more time, I would have done the label by hand using watercolors. But with my time constraints, I knew I could create a natural effect using the right brushes and texture. I was also able to use layers to place the text and other elements, as well as the cutout shape over as I worked, so I would know where to leave or fill space. I painted a watercolor wash on a medium roughness paper to create a rough look without sacrificing legibility.

bottle art

Painting to be used on the label background of Pinot Gris bottle

Then it was time to add all the elements and move them as necessary. I made a few tweaks to the Photoshop paint file as I did this, so the art wouldn’t obscure anything. Once it was complete, I had the labels cut using a laser cutter and glued them onto the bottles I had chosen for it. The excellent product photography was done by my friend Ollie, though much Photoshop tweaking had to be done to remove fingerprints and white around the edges from the laser cut being off slightly. It seems obvious now, but were I to do this project again, I would have given the file a good amount of bleed so that wouldn’t happen.

final label design

The final label design, created in InDesign

I have fond thoughts looking back at this project. It was my first package design assignment that I really enjoyed and it made me realize that there was much you could do with package design if you flex your creative muscles!

SailAir

SailAir was created through a student project for a motion design class. We had a short time to prepare the video before presenting it to the class. Everyone in the class was teamed up (randomly), given a random company name, and a random object. Nick, Doh and I were teamed up and given the random company name:

SailAir

Then we went to a table filled with random objects ranging from toys to exercise equipment to car parts and we were given this cheap plastic toy gun:

Creating a story board and a shot list were important steps in the project. They help immensely with communication and critiquing with your teammates.

Together we brainstormed and eventually decided to use an idea I came up with. SailAir could be a space company and with a little work, we could turn the gun into a launch vehicle. A spinning, flying wheel – a low-budget vessel for launching people from the planet into space. After all, not everyone can afford a spaceship. We submitted our idea to our teacher for approval with a request: could we paint our object to make it look more like a ship? Our teacher agreed and we moved on from the concept page to creating icons for the company and creating a story board for our video.

sailair logos

Logo designs created for the fictional SailAir space company

Nick finalized the script while I painted the gun to look like something NASA might use and created the animated text to be used in the video. Together we found music that fit our theme and changed our storyboard and shot list to make sure everything synced up well with the music.

Doh used his personal drone to capture some amazing video while he was in Washington and visiting San Francisco. Thanks to him, we had some great footage of the horizon to put our “ship” into with After Effects. Finally, the project was complete.

We ended up getting a “best in class” award for this video. We were all proud of what we accomplished and we had a great time collaborating.  Nick, Doh, and I each have different talents that came together in a great way. If you want to see more of their work, you can visit their websites below:

Doh Tran

Nick King