Design Inspiration: ’06 Geometric Animal’ by Roosevelt Graphic Arts

When researching for our Week 3 Graphic Communication Task, I came across this geometric artwork by Roosevelt Graphic Arts. I have chosen some of my favourite pieces of art, but see full post for more.

Source: 06 Geometric Animal


Winning the Innovate Guildford photo competition! 

After visiting Innovate Guildford (see full blog post here) on Saturday 12th March, I decided to enter the photo competition that you could enter if you’d visited the event.

The theme was ‘innovation’. I wanted to enter a photo that really reflected innovation, and after much deliberation I chose a photo I took of the moon a year or so ago.

To enter you had to tweet your entry with a short explanation (wish it could be longer, I hate the Twitter word limit!); my entry is below:


I’d almost forgotten about it, when yesterday evening a notification pops up from the @innovateG4 Twitter telling me I’d won!


I was (and still am) beyond excited. I’ve won a compact camera, and I was looking at it at the event (they had a camera/ photography stall run by Sharp Shots), and it was such a good camera!

I am receiving my award and also meeting the Mayor next Wednesday, which also happens to be my birthday! 5.30pm, I can’t wait.

Here is my winning photo in full:

Innovate Guildford Website
Sharp Shots Website


Product Design A Level: Patents

So I decided to post something a bit different today. For my A level Product Design course we have to study theory, such as materials and processes. There is a 60%-40% split between practical and theory, with the 60% being coursework that is completed and sent off just after the Easter holidays. I’ve decided that as part of my revision I’ll be posting little bits of DT theory, to help me revise but also to help anyone else studying Product Design A level, or just for people’s general interest!


Today’s post: Patents

What are patents?
A patent is a licence giving the sole right to exclude others from making, using, or selling an invention for a set period of time (usually 20 years), unless granted permission by the patent holder.


What do patents do?
Patents protect designers’ work by preventing ideas from being copied.
Once a patent is granted, it then becomes legal property of the designer and they are free to sell it, authorise others to make/use/sell their invention in exchange for royalties (money). 

What do patents contain?
They contain details of the product sufficient for it to be made by a third party. A detailed description including drawings and technical detail that may be used by manufacturers actually making the product or improving it in the future.

How do you apply for a patent?
If the designer can prove the invention is theirs, they can be granted a patent.  This gives the designer legal ownership over the idea and allows legal action to be taken against anyone using their invention without their permission.

There are 4 criteria a design must meet in order for it to be granted a patent.

  1. It must be new, not shown/discussed publicly anywhere before the patient application is filed.
  2. It must involve an inventive step.
  3. It must be possible to industrially make that product. It must be a physical substance, product or industrial process.
  4. It must not be excluded. You cannot patent something on the excluded list by the Patent Office (e.g. scientific theories, art, computer programmes)

Are there any rules for holding a patent?
Patent holders must make details of their invention public. This allows the state to build up a knowledge base → encourages further invention and technological advances for the benefit of everyone.

Cons of patenting

  • Can be very expensive → especially if worldwide patents are required.
    Can be very difficult for lone inventors who often need initial investment in order to afford a patent, which puts them in a vulnerable position as their ideas are at risk of being copied after presenting it to initial investors.
  • Products are at the most risk of being copied as they are just launched, as rival companies can reverse engineer products in order to modify them and launch similar products with added features.
    Some argue that because patents are made public, this means getting a new product to market first can be very difficult.
    Some companies therefore choose not to patent their idea in the hope that they will be the first to market and can capture a larger market share before rivals can develop a competing product.

Are there other methods for protecting intellectual properties?
If two manufacters have similar products but with different features, these features can be protected by registering the design.
Brand names, slogans and other branding material can be protected by being registered as trade marks.

Case study: James Dyson

In 2000, James Dyson took Hoover to court over infringements of his 1980 patent for his bagless vacuum cleaner using cyclones. (Hoover was manufacturing Triple Vortex bagless vacuum cleaners at the time), using the same cyclone invention.
Dyson had to put everything he had into paying for legal action.
He eventually won the case and was able to set up his own UK factory with the money he gained from Hoover.


Key definitions:

Patent: a licence giving the sole right to exclude others from making, using, or selling an invention for a set period of time (usually 20 years), unless granted permission by the patent holder.

Reverse engineering: taking apart a product and look at how they can be improved

Royalties: a sum paid to a patentee for the use of a patent or to an author or composer for each copy of a book sold or for each public performance of a work.

Today’s Scrapbook: World Book Day

Today was World Book Day (Celebrating its 19th birthday!) and Sixth Form all dressed up which was so much fun! My friends and I dressed up as Hobbits from The Lord of The Rings which was a lot of fun – I also painted a poster saying ‘To Isengard’ because of that viral video ‘They’re taking the hobbits to Isengard‘. I of course made a scrapbook page of the day!

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This one is landscape because it just fit much better. I’m sad I can’t use my £1 off voucher, but I really wanted to stick it in my scrapbook so it’s a sacrifice I’m willing to pay! I really need to get reading again, I absolutely love reading but it’s just so hard to find the time when you’re doing A levels. Ah well.

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Incredible feedback from @limpidsoul | Hello Recovery 

Right I’m going to get real for a minute so apologies if this doesn’t apply. As most of my friends know, I’ve struggled with an eating disorder for most of my life, and it got particularly bad when rowing became a more important part of my life. I wouldn’t eat lunch or dinner most days and I’d make myself throw up when I did eat. However, in my time of recovery, I have never had something that helps as much as this spoon from @hello.recovery
Yes, it’s just a spoon, but it’s something that gives me courage to feel okay about putting fuel in my body, to listen to my bodies needs and to be okay that I’m not the slimmest person in the world. To quote the spoon, I don’t let food control me anymore, and that’s okay. If anyone out there is struggling with eating problems (especially the rowing world, trust me, I know how hard it is for y’all) I would really advise you to get one of these spoons, they’re not at all expensive and it’s honestly so useful to kick start your recovery.
Thank you @[my personal instagram] for the work you put into this, it’s completely and utterly fantastic, I can’t ever thank you enough.

– Emma Harlow, @limpidsoul on Instagram

Instantprint’s Britain’s Best Budding Designer Entry

I am on the emailing list of Instantprint so every now and again I receive offers and the suchlike for them. I purchased my business cards or ZING from Instantprint and I absolutely loved them- they were great quality and when I was choosing they sent me a free sample pack of the different types of business cards which was wonderful!

Anyway, so a few days ago I got an email from them, but this time it was a competition!

It read:

What is Britain’s Best Budding Designer?

We’re on the hunt for the freshest talent in design. For your chance to win £1,000 in cash, simply submit your own design that best showcases your unique style.

If shortlisted, you’ll then be commissioned to design an instantprint template, which will be featured on our website along with your profile. Our panel of judges will pick one overall winner, with two runners-up: second place will receive £500 and third place will win £250 prize money.

Good luck, and we look forward to seeing your designs!

[Read more about the competition here]

I’m always nervous to enter competitions because I’m worried what I have done isn’t good enough or that I won’t win and I’ll be disappointed, but you know the old saying- ‘you don’t know if you don’t try’! So I decided to put my anxieties behind and give it a go.

I wasn’t sure what to enter at first, so I looked at my Digital Sketchbook for inspiration, and I came across my seagul drawing from when I was in Cornwall last Easter.

You can upload anything you like that shows us why you should be considered for Britain’s Best Budding Designer. For inspiration, this could be a logo, poster, flyer, banner, anything which best shows off your talents.

I was thinking of doing some invites for the competition (partly due fo the fact that Instantprint sell invites amoung other things), and I was debating between doing dragons (inspired by a dragon I sketched) and castles, or the seaside… I chose the seaside because I thought I could have a lot of fun with it! Plus I already really liked the way the seagul looked.

Here is the final design I came up with!

No border


Narrow Border

I wasn’t sure whether to have a border or not, and when I asked other people there were mixed reactions so I just couldn’t decide! But then I made the border narrower and I think that is my favourite one of the three, so that is my entry!

They also requested you answered this question: ‘What Inspires Your Design?’. My answer is below:
My design is inspired by experimentation on my tablet. I enjoy sketching on my tablet and trying different techniques to see what works and what doesn’t. When I was in Cornwall with my family last Easter, I took a picture of a seagul and decided to draw it. I was really happy with the way it came out and liked the style I had attempted. When I saw this design competition I decided to create some invites using that same seagul I drew. After doing some initial design sketches I checked on the Internet- and there were none quite like my design; with the beach-hut containing most of the text, so I went ahead and created it! I am inspired by everyday art and design in the real world, from infographics to physical products, and I can’t wait to do more designing in the future.

Here is the layout of the competition, as on the Instantprint website. Even if I didn’t win, it would be incredible to he shortlisted and be able to have one of my designs on Instantprint!

I entered it just before 10am on 27/2/2016, I’m nervous but excited to see what comes of it!

Wish me luck! I’ll keep you updated,


Today’s Scrapbook: Christie’s party

Today I went to one of my best friend’s parties at TGI Fridays and we had a wonderful time. I didn’t have any black paper for my scrapbook so I ended up using a felt tip and just colouring the page in- don’t think that was the most efficient way of doing it, but there we go!

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When you and your friends have a crush on the waiter and he gives you your receipt with his name on it and ‘Thank you’ and you’re all dying… Ah what it is to go to an all-girls school!