Applied Design

Graphic design can mean just about anything. 15 years ago a graphic designer was the person who knew photoshop pretty well and could do some generally nifty things with a computer. Now, circa 2015, everyone and anyone with a computer and a little know-how can jump on the “graphic designer” band wagon.

What does it truly mean to be a graphic designer, and what do they do?


As for the jobs you can do, it really can be about anything. From making toys to designing signs for international bathrooms, your new career in graphic design could be fruitful or could be as lame as a duck. And with that being said, you could be in the position to really influence a generation or group of people with your designs.

I know comfy, I can design comfy.
I know comfy, I can design comfy.
Michael Keatons newest role...
Michael Keatons newest role…
Spawn + anything = object for me to acquire
Spawn + anything = object for me to acquire

As for what makes your designs good and worthwhile, that goes into the planning of your design. Almost everything needs to be considered when designing a product. For example when designing a toy, you need to identify the age         group, the colors for the product, the parts to the toy (choking hazards, difficult assembly), durability, what type of toy it is and etc.

Wayfinders are an important tool for navigation around the world. For the most part your phone handles it all. But signs are still important seeing as though most people aren’t glued to their phones 24/7. For these wayfinders to work well, they need to provide clear direction with readable type. Again, the thought behind the design plays a big role in its construction and needs to be considered in great detail for great success!


Apps for your phone seem to be coming out at an ever increasing pace, with new games and new apps for almost anything. For apps to work and be successful, especially practical ones, the design behind it needs to sharp in order for the user to not uninstall it hours after they installed it

I use the Stevens Pass app to check the weather and conditions of the mountain, but I feel the app can offer a little more design-wise. To me, it serves the basic purpose but is very plain.


I feel you could have a home screen showing the latest weather forecast, the next event coming up or maybe the latest family deal. The menu would be at the top, with a very basic menu icon at the top that leads you to a menu that lists sub menus and utilizes the old icons from the previous version of the app. Just some suggestions Stevens…..


The left would be the main screen and be scrollable, advertising conditions, deals and events for more business opportunity, and the menu on the right would be a reorganized menu more app users are familiar with. A mood board would need to be generated, but just giving it some quick thought, a light blue / white scheme might appeal more to its current users. Be sure to check back for updates later in the week!

Some terms for your brain…

Raster – In computer graphics, a raster graphics image is a dot matrix data structure representing a generally rectangular grid of pixels, or points of color, viewable via a monitor, paper, or other display medium.

Vector -A method of electronically coding graphic images so that they arerepresented in lines rather than fixed bitmaps, allowing an image, as on a computer display screen, to be rotated or proportionally scaled with distortion

Type Face – A design for a set of characters. Popular typefaces include Garamond and Helvetica. The typeface represents one aspect of a font.

Font – A complete assortment of type of one style and size. The font also includes such characteristics as size, weight and italics.

Serif – A small decorative line added as embellishment to the basic form of a character. Typefaces are often described as being serif or sans serif. The most common serif typeface is Times Roman.

Sans Serif – Meaning without serif. A common sans serif typeface is Helvetica.

Em-space – A term derived from the width of the capital “M” on a metal character block used with early print presses, similar to the blocks shown in the picture on this page. An em space is used to define the current point size of the font. For example, a 12-point type has an em space of 12 points, which also means each space is 12 points.

Ascender – In typography, the portion of a lowercase letter that rises above the main body of the letter (that is, above the height of a lowercase x).

Descender – In typography, the portion of a lowercase letter that falls below the baseline.

Kerning – In typography, kerning refers to adjusting the space between characters, especially by placing two characters closer together than normal.

Leading – A typographical term that refers to the vertical space between lines of text. The word derives from the fact that typographers once used thin strips of lead to separate lines.

Bezier – Pronounced bez-ee-ay, Bézier curves are curved lines (splines) defined by mathematical formulas. Nearly all draw programs support Bézier curves.


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