Following our first meeting with the lecturers for our discipline, we have been asked to present our own work and also show images/items/etc which we find inspirational. In thinking about inspirational materials, I’ve found that it’s an area I’ve never really explicitly thought about before. Of course, I look through design magazines and archive websites on a regular basis to see what’s being produced within the fields that I am most interested in. I also consider what I do and do not like, and am able to generate opinions in one way or another but I’ve never really taken it upon myself to follow a particular designer or collective’s work. I would even go so far as to say that I don’t tend to look towards current designers or websites for inspiration – I think that I am more heavily influenced by the world around me; by the social interactions, journeys and experiences of being wherever I am at a point in time.
With that in mind, I have come to realise that my influences are probably made up of the combination of variables that I control to change my mood or affect the way that I am doing something. More specifically, the books that I read, the music that I listen to, the films that I watch or the websites that I visit, at a point in time. They are points of reference; works that I have consumed before and felt a particular response to – I therefore know what I’ll get from them next time and will refer them if I want to evoke that particular feeling again. Within this in mind, I am going to look at a few of the sources which I consider to be my inspirations…
Ford Focus ST Microsite
-I really like the interface and ‘brand confidence’ of this website – as a promotional tool I think it is highly effe1ctive in conjuring up desire for the product that it presents. In essence it is actually a very simple idea though it succeeds in highlighting the unique features of the car whilst being packaged very impressively and elaborately to creative an impression of style and glamour.
– An artist with a visual style which really appeals to me
– A great photographer who has a good eye for framing and composition, I also like the richness of his images. He also has an awesome flash site!
– Hybrid Hybrid are a ‘production group’ (a genre/style/classification I try to use to stop people turning their nose up at the thought of ‘dance’ or electronic’ music)
– I am a massive fan for their music for it’s precision, grace and experimental style. They, very effectively, combine orchestral and electronic sounds to produce some of the most amazing compositions and seem to be relatively unique in their style. I was lucky enough to meet Mike Truman, one of the two members of Hybrid, earlier this year.
– BT A music producer with a similar style to Hybrid – although he seems to be working through a whole series of styles, changing with almost every album, of which every release is a masterpiece in its own right. His last release was a very high production album working with orchestras, sampling and programming to produce a series of high definition soundscapes, all of which have supporting animations. His past work has been more mainstream and accessible but I appreciate an artist who dares to experiment.
– Incubus A rock group who I’ve listened to for years, again, I really respect their changing nature – they currently have a really volatile sound. I think, lyrically, Brandon Boyd is without comparison in his level of creativity, and in collaboration with the rest of the band, who are all really talented musicians, they inspire me in that way.
– My Vitriol
A really talented group – though I don’t know how they have survived, shortly after releasing and touring their debut album in 2001 they announced a hiatus in 2004 and have only had 2 singles since – and more rumours than ‘Heat’…The true professionals when it comes to not being rushed – what would the world be like if everyone worked this way?
– Zhang Yimou I really love everything about the production style of Zhang Yimou’s films, – the visuals, the colour, the scale, the sound, the mise en scene, everything! – all perfectly crafted to create relatively simple but enchanting films.
– Robert Rodriguez
I am a big fan of Robert Rodriguez as a director, and creative, for his very dynamic and imaginative style. I remember in a short production piece that he created to support one of his films that, with his use of technology and his working style he was able to “make movies at the speed of thought’. I also admire the way he very openly communicates his ideas and creative processes in an attempt to encourage more people to be creative in a similar way.
– Graham Greene
Graham Greene is without a doubt one of my favourite authors. He had an amazing talent for constructing very deep narratives through characterisation and situation. One of the most significant things for me as reader of his books is that they have timeless quality – for me this is a real indicator of talent and ability in composition of any product – true design is timeless.