Hilton Design


Editorial Design

Evaluation and Reflection


1) Visual Communication:

In what ways does the visual communication/message of the piece meet the needs of the brief?

The brief says to create a double page spread of a piece of my photography. I have taken a various amount of photos to pick from and have chosen two of my liking to include in the DPS.

In what ways does the visual communication/message of the piece fail to meet the needs of the brief?

I think that possibly the text may distract the eye from the actual photos.

What are the strengths of the visual communication? Why?

I believe my strengths within my double page spreads are the simplicity and colour harmony with them. Also I am extremely pleased with my photos and choice of type to fit the brief.

What are the weaknesses of the visual communication? Why?

I do not feel there are any weaknesses within my piece today apart from the printing which was not my fault and will sort out as soon as possible.

In what ways could the piece be mis-read or misunderstood by the audience? Be specific about who the audience is.

Maybe the audience may not know what environment I have subjected to, though I believe this is very clear.

In what practical ways could the piece be developed or improved?

Getting my own printer would be handy as then I wouldn’t have to rely on the college ones.

2) Reflection of own working practices:

How was my time keeping?

I found my time keeping skills well set out, I feel that the brief may have been a bit too long for the task as I had finished it in the early stages from when it was set.

How was my analysis of the brief?

I read the brief and understood it very well, though I felt it was too independent as that in a real life brief they’re a hell of a lot more specific.

How was my research?

I think I got the main parts I had to look up, and researching something you enjoy does give me a bit more enthusiasm.

How did I draw conclusions from my research?

I’m not so sure, I just gathered my research and analysed it, bought it into how I was going to set my work out and adapted it.

How did I use research to generate and develop ideas?

I done a PMI and went to look at examples of existing DPS’s to gain some inspiration and to draw a line to how it should look like.

How did I use evaluations to help with my ideas generation and development?

I learnt from my mistakes, instead of evaluating my own work as I went along, I involved others and a few experts instead to get an outside point of view.

How did I use experimentation during the project? How can I make this more effective?

I like to experiment on software and discover techniques my own way making it a little more unique. I made a few versions each fairly similar and got some peoples opinions.

In what ways did I show that I had achieved the Learning Outcomes? How can I improve this next time?

I blogged about my progress frequently and documented everything I done.

What parts of the project did I enjoy most? Why was this the case?

The photography as it was something different from our recent briefs.

At what times did I work best? Why might this be the case? How can I ensure that I work well at all times?

Working with the software.


What areas were challenging or difficult? Why was this the case?

The only area I found challenging again was the print stage as that the college printers are not great.

How can I go about developing and improving the parts I found difficult?

Research a little bit more maybe, and get to know the adobe suite a little bit more.




Final Version


So with my final version I decided to change my text areas to blend in more with the photos in the background, the reason being was because the text area came in too strong and felt a bit too tacky. Also when I input the text it just didn’t work well on a white background.

When it came to printing there was one big problem which was that the black transparent box didn’t show as being transparent at all. This was an issue with the college printers and I shall be printing elsewhere for a better result for my portfolio.

So after all the versions I had made for this project here is the final outcome with a link to the PDF too.

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*Link to PDF*

Photograph descriptions


“This photography shoot was based on how nature reacts with weather based in East Sussex. I wanted to catch natures ugliness and make it look more as a beauty of nature by combining the weather with the forest.

Within this photo I have focused on moss that grows on trees. I didn’t want to capture a full tree so instead I captured something that looked as if it was not habitable for animals unlike the other photo with full grown trees in a group.

Even though the weather wasn’t great as the sun never came out and I had to wait around for a while to capture this shot I was pleased with the colours, lighting and angle of the final shot.”

“This photo was taken on a different day when the sun was just about to set. With this photo I wanted to make it as if the photo wasn’t taken here in England.

Without the natural lighting hitting the trees at a certain angle made the trees not look so appealing to the eye during the day. I wanted to wait and experiment throughout the day looking at different angles of natural lighting.

I wanted to also test out different techniques with the camera. The decision was that I would use the fisheye effect. The reason being is that it enhances what I wanted to focus on which were the trees.”

Third version


I wanted to change a few things around after looking at how my DPS’s looked in the previous blog post. I wanted to change the layout for text most importantly and also one of the photos.

While thinking about the layout I noticed that the sun was hitting the trees outside really nicely. I decided to go out with my camera again to the woods down my road. I managed to take these wicked shots.


I absolutely loved the second one from the bottom and replaced my previous dps image with that so I ended up with these two photos for my final decision.

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I then went on to redesigning the text box so that it may work a little better working with the page numbers and text about the photo. I also added a little bio about me and where the photos were taken from. I also thought adding a very thin line to separate the description and page number was necessary. I colour picked the colour of the line from the photos.

Here is my Layer palette to show my organisation throughout the process.

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Here are the final looks without description though I may change my mind on the layout again depending on how it works with the descriptions in place.

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Second version


As said in the previous blog I am going to be adding better quality photos and also some of the page content like the page numbers. I will be choosing fonts and will be sharing with you what my thoughts are throughout the process.

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So here is one of my chosen photos for my DPS, I chose this as that the quality was just fantastic, also there was a good balance of colours and worked out to be really easy to work with fonts and other colours.

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I then thought to put a gradient on the image to make it look as if it is fading out of the page in to the sky of the photo.

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I first of all went with this idea to display my text with a nice gradient white box with a slim border.

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I also chose this picture because of the colours and having in mind that the text may fit nicely up in the top area of both pages. I’m not too convinced on this page and I think that both the double page spreads should be within the same sort of layout design.

I also added the page numbers and how I’d lay that out. I took the same layout from the Creative Review series as that it looked clean and simple and doesn’t stand out so much to distract the viewer.

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Below is the character options I was working from.

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As I mentioned that I wasn’t too keen on the recent photo I will be going back to choosing a different one and look at a different layout style.

First version


Here is a visual and verbal journal of my process on my first attempt on creating my DPS, this is still using dummy photos.

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Here I selected the dummy photo which wasn’t so much a dummy shot as that I had taken it but it was on my iPhone so the quality wasn’t how I wanted it. Anyway I resized the image slightly, cropped it and placed it on the left hand page.

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Then I thought what if I enlarge the image to fill the whole page like I did when I was experimenting with layouts, though the image looked a little stretched and distorted it was only a test photo so it wasn’t the final photo of use.

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I decided to experiment with boxes for where the text could be laid into the page. I thought the one would be good if it was slightly transparent but then remembered from my inspiration double page spreads that the was one which stood out particular which was this one.


I adapted it and realised that it doesn’t block as much of the photo as the other textbox did.

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This attempt was an experiment mostly trying out the two different layouts that I thought would work best, in the next post I will be putting in the main images and designing more the detail in the pages such as the page numbers.

Layout options


Here I am going to be experimenting with different layouts to a DPS. I have taken a temporary photo from my iphone to represent my photos. I will be choosing a layout from these for what I hope to use in my final piece by the end of this blog post.

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From these I think that the second, third and sixth will work out best for my DPS’s as that I am thinking of just doing one image over two pages instead of a few photos as that it could get a little too busy for the audience. Though I love the simplicity of the sixth one I may have to scrap it as to the fact that the images I will be using are all landscape shots and will not look so great once I crop them.

Choices from Ashdown forest photos


Here I am going to be showing the photos that I’ve considered for my DPS. I will also be explaining why I chose them and not some of the others.


I like this ground shot as that it captures a different perspective of a forest, up close and personal with a lot of detail to it. Though there isn’t too much colour unfortunately but you can see some parts of yellow the deeper you look into the photo.


This one is a good one as it catches your eye with the bright yellow flowers in the centre of the photo. It also shows the climate within the area, slightly dark and gloomy but then is lightened up with the flowers, bringing forward that nature is beauty.


This works out as good landscape shot covering a wide section of the forest, there’s also colour to it despite the gloomy weather. I also like the way that the tree at the front is rather unique and is the only one like that within the wide shot.


This is probably my favourite out of the lot as that the angle works really well and brightens up the photo more. It also has a lot to it and I like the way that I focused on to the tree stump which had a little moss on it. There’s a fair amount of colour in it aswell and it blurs up through the photo too which I feel is a real cool effect.

With these photos I did like them though I found that they kind of where a bit too over the top with the bright colours, though as landscapes of the forest they did work well in that offer.

I feel that I have made a choice on what photos out of these lot to use and I will start to create my double page spreads next!

*All photos are copyright protected*

Lightning shots


So I had mentioned the other day that I wanted to get some snaps of some lightening though unfortunately it did not arrive the day I was out and hasn’t since! I really am a fan of natural disasters as that they are not planned and completely natural and capturing these events in a professional way really can look great! I’ve looked around the web for some inspiration and found the following photos.

I also felt the need to look up a way to prepare yourself to capture these shots.

1) Safety first!

Find a good cover – staying inside a building, a car or any other object that can protect from a direct impact is the best. I strongly advise against photographing a lightning in an open area, especially if there is water, tall trees or structures nearby. Stand at least 50 feet away from water and tall trees/buildings.

2) Prepare your equipment

If you want a very good picture of a lightning, a DSLR with a tripod is almost a must. If you have a point and shoot, make sure that your camera can be set to manual control for shutter speed and aperture. Some people get lucky by taking a good picture of a lightning hand-held, but I strongly advise to use a tripod instead. Depending on the amount of ambient light, you will have to use long shutter speeds between 3 to 30 seconds and any potential shake will negatively impact the sharpness of the image. Any lens would work, but wide angle and zoom lenses work the best, since you can fit more and at the same time have the flexibility to change the focal length and target a specific area.

3) Find a lightning storm and a good spot

Finding a lightning storm is typically not a problem – storms happen everywhere and depending on the time of the year, might even happen as often as every day. What’s hard, is finding a good spot to take a picture of a lightning. Sometimes it is not very practical to scout for a good location in the middle of a lightning storm, so try to find a spot close to you that would give the best view of the sky and a relatively good foreground/background that would look good. Again, make sure that you pick a safe spot from which you can take your picture. I suggest protecting your camera against rain drops by putting a piece of cloth or a plastic bag on it, covering both the camera and your lens.

4) Set up your camera and tripod

Put your camera on your tripod and configure the camera settings:

  1. Set your lens to manual focus and then focus to infinity. Take a test shot in auto mode and make sure that your picture looks sharp on the rear LCD. Remember, digital cameras cannot acquire correct focus in dark environments, so it is best to focus manually.
  2. Set your camera ISO to “base” ISO (lowest value). On Nikon D5000/D90/D300/D700/D3/D3s cameras the base ISO is 200. On older Nikon cameras such as D80/D200 the base ISO is 100. Most Canon DSLRs have 100 as the base ISO.
  3. Set your camera to full manual mode. In manual mode, you control both the aperture and the shutter speed. I would not trust the camera’s metering system, simply because periodic lightning strikes will brighten up the area and your camera might give an incorrect exposure. Start at the shutter speed of 3-5 seconds and f/8 and see how the image comes out. If you are in a dark area, you might want to decrease the shutter speed all the way to 15-30 seconds, while in areas with plenty of light, you will have to stop down the lens to f/16 or more to allow longer exposures without overexposing the entire scene.

5) Other considerations

A remote cable release or an infrared remote (depending on your camera) is strongly recommended if you want to avoid camera shake, even on a tripod. If the lightning is far away, having a flashlight with you might be useful, since you can “paint” your foreground subject to make the whole scene look more dramatic.

6) Compose your shot

While composing your shot, make sure to cover more sky than your foreground/background. It might not look very good in the viewfinder, but once the lightning strikes, your subject becomes the lightning. During intense lightning storms, the lightning will cover the majority of the picture and that’s exactly what you want. I would say 60-80% of the sky and 20-40% of the ground is probably a safe bet.

7) Be patient and take many shots

I typically take many shots (shot after shot), pointing my lens at the same location. Sometimes you might get nothing, sometimes you might get an awesome shot. Just be patient and keep taking pictures and I’m sure you will get a really nice opportunity for a great shot.


This walkthrough would have helped out incredibly and I will refer back to this when it eventually does decide to thunder and lightning!!


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