Firstly, as a group we were given the subject of 5-a-day. To generate a wide range of ideas the group split up, in doing so this enabled us to think of ideas uninfluenced by input from other group members. Spider diagrams were created of possible directions the project could be taken in. We reviewed the possible outcomes in more detail, considering the target audience and most effective method of delivery. After further discussions we decided to produce the 'stay creative' concept because it was a strong idea with a specific target audience.
As creatives we were all aware that creative block is an issue that affects us all. Our target audience is creative students from the Leeds area. Therefore we collected primary research by asking students from around university if creative block affected them. Almost everybody we spoke to has suffered from creative block in the past, so it was obvious that staying creative is an issue. Moreover, Leo also created a questionnaire which was disseminated around University asking students how they personally overcome creative block. After the problem was defined we collected secondary research into the functionality of different outcomes.
At this point of the project the group was divided on what form the outcome should take, some members of the group wanted to produce a calendar with the daily tasks and others wanted to produce a magazine. Therefore, I collected a body of secondary research exploring the functionality of calendars and magazines for our project. The research enabled me to see a problem with format, we could not display 5-a-day tasks on a calendar unless we produced a monthly calendar with a page for each day.
It was decided that the outcome was going to take the form of a magazine, so I collected a small body secondary research into creative magazine layouts. The aim of this was to give me an informed idea of the functionality of a magazine outcome, and how this could be adapted to suit our outcome.
Additionally, when thinking of ideas for the content of the magazine, I suggested that we email a few inspirational designers and artists to see if they would like to have a featured interview in the magazine. I emailed illustrator Drew Millward, who replied saying he'd love to do it, and could even meet us in Leeds to do it face to face. I met Drew on a Wednesday and collected Primary research for the magazine in the form of an interview. This was useful as it gave us content for the magazine and also presented me with the chance to ask a working professional how they overcome creative block.
Moreover, I also collected primary research from possible places of distribution. The magazine is aimed at creative students from Leeds, so the best distribution point will be in colleges and Universities. Therefore, I walked to Vernon street amongst other places looking at where the magazine could be distributed. Moreover, I also collected flyers and booklets regarding creative events in Leeds as we planned to have a creative events section for our audience. I believe that we could have improved our research by making a questionnaire that asked the audience if they would interact better with tasks that engaged their creativity, or simply tips and tricks that could be quickly read.
I found divining the workload hard, there were specific tasks that everyone wanted to have input in, like the logo for example. Three members of the group made a range of logos, although this gave us a breadth of choice, we could have saved time by focusing on individual tasks.
Firstly, one problem we encountered was time management. I created time management sheets to help us keep the project on track, however we were unable to keep to the schedule as we didn’t have all the elements for the magazine we needed to progress. This resulted in us printing the magazine later than expected which left us with less time to check for errors and to distribute the magazine, undoubtedly missed some, like the page numbers on pages 17 & 18. Moreover, the overrun of time also affected our presentation as we had little time to spend preparing it. I believe that if we divided the work load up better and were stricter with meeting deadlines the project could have been a lot more successful.
Moreover, I think that the magazine was successful; we distributed it around university and generated some audience interaction online. However, I think that we could have improved our outcome, and the audience interaction if we had organised ourselves better as a group. This would have allowed us to spend more time checking the magazine for errors, and given us time to properly prepare our presentation. Moreover, I think that the magazine could have benefited from having tips to staying creative, rather than daily tasks. Students from Leeds College of Art are busy (this may not affect students from other universities), so finding time to complete 5 daily tasks could prove a task in itself.
Finally, we were asked after our presentation if we were going to carry on producing the publication after the end of the brief. I think that creating a publication is a great way to meet artists and get involved in the industry at an early stage in our careers as designers. Despite this, I don’t think that I personally would continue to produce 5 magazine, as I think that the concept and ideas need developing further. However, being involved in producing the magazine has got me thinking about possible concept for a magazine that could be produced in the near future.