Thursday, February 24, 2011

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Bio Options

Option 1
I am first and for most a creative problem solver. I love how design can do so much more than just make something look pretty, it can ignite social change. I have been interning at VML, a digital advertising agency, for almost a year. I love the enthusiasm and energy that you find in an advertising field I am 100% a people person. While most people dread public speaking I find it to be a performance and a chance for people to listen to all you have to say. I am also a very practical designer. I understand clients needs, and will work with them to find an intriguing yet obtainable solution.


--I am a very creative thinker and problem solver, design is just one of the most effective outlets to answer most problems

--Born in Peculiar Missouri, the odds where not always with me. So I packed up me and my little dog and we made the trip into the big city

Option 2

As a young child I could either be found at dance class or practicing my moves in front of the mirror. What was then perceived as cute and the subject matter of many family videos, would actually make the designer I am today. Dancing has taught me to be under the spot light. Even though breaking out in Pirouettes many not always be appropriate during a critic, I still look at every presentation as a performance. A chance for me to entertain and inform my audience through my design narrative. For me the joy in design comes from the conceptualizing and asking what if.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentine's Day Inspiration

It starts at a young age

Degree Project Timeline

Degree Project Timeline [Amanda Laffoon]


update process book with form ideas and book experiment

begin brain storming for branding elements (webs)

set up temporary blog


use the webs to begin naming and logo concepts 3 logo concepts due

collect book from family


4 other ideas for tangible tools that could go in this system

update process book

refinement on all 3 logo concepts


have book thing refined/ with new tool

refinement on all 3 logo concepts

add elements to blog to add interaction



update process book

add elements to blog to add interaction

all brand elements and begin flushing out all other attributes



collect booklet stuff

update process book

document blog process

refinement of brand direction

have interviewed the participated families for any last feedback about form and content


Final pieces determined to start

artifact decision



3 directions for main page/ home screen


2 directions for home screen + 2 pages


initial iterations for advertisement pieces

update process book

tighten up layouts


rework branding to meet current style

have all pages designed


update process book

apply feedback from families to layouts

refinement to advertisement


all layouts refined

all blurb spreads considered

print ad work



update process book

print first round blurb book


refinement to advertisement

feedback and refinement

show families my project-homework


refinement, re work/ print ad stuff

send off blurb book?


feedback and refinement

get my ad stuff off to production



Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Degree Project Process

Amanda Laffoon

Degree Project

February 8, 2011

The quest to land a concise topic for my senior degree project has taken a few twist and turns. When I first began my initial research last semester. The main question I was trying to answer through my project was“How can help to raise awareness of cervical cancer among teenage girls ages 15-20?” With this question in mind I started doings some investigating–what causes cervical cancer? I was given some information from the educational director at Planned Parenthood, that girls are becoming sexually active around the age of 12. This information really sent me over the edge, I had no idea. I found, and most would agree, that if a 12 year is having sex she is in some desperate need of guidance and support. However the problem here is that the girls are not talking to their parents and they don’t know what is going on in their impressionable daughters lives. It was in this realization that my direction should be less on sexuality of teen girls and more towards helping that age group communicate more efficiently with their parents.

The relationship between a teenage girl and her parents is one of the most intense of all relationships. The teen is trying to find their identity apart from the family unit. This usually comes in the form of rebellion and a need for separation. While the parents are trying to protect their baby girl from the big bad world, putting a lot of pressure on the bond. This push and pull concept could be settled through communication. Which leads me to where my project is going, my plan is to create tools in which promote positive conversation between parents and their teenage daughter. This can be through both parties just talking more than they do currently, or maybe finding alternative ways for them to stay up to date on each others lives. Communications will not only help the specific relationship of the parents and teen but could also help the family stay close for years to follow.

So with the topic ironed out and the main problem of communication pin pointed. It is time to start considering what form these "communication tools" will take. One design solution could be a kit type of approach where a family with a teenage girl would receive (I am not quite sure how they would receive it yet.) But this packet could included an activity book for the parents and teen daughter to fill out together. As well as other items all with the same purpose of invoking conversations between the involved parties. My hope is that these activities would help the daughters get to know their parents more, in hopes of feeling more understood. Also this would involve some listening and some talking by both participants.

My second hypothetical design solution would be to take the same purpose as the kit, but use the abundant resource of technology in which to host it. I am imagining this becoming almost an online blog that can be accessed only by the parents and the daughter (or other family members if invited.) This blog could act as a “safe place” for the individuals to share stories, ask questions, and just all around communicate. I will need to see if teenage girls feel more comfortable talking one-on-one to their parents about sensitive topics such as personal issues. Or if they would feel more comfortable and less award writing it down or even typing in out in a post. I really like where the idea of this online blog is going. Not only because this would not only be useful to the parent teen relationship at the time, but will also help to stay in touch long after the teenage years have passed. This blog could even help them keep in touch when the teen girl goes off to college. This blog then become an archive of the relationship over the years to go back and remember the past all documented out.

This is still a little rough but it is a start and I am really happy with my new direction towards communication.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Mark OConnor Poster Redesign


I am working on redoing my Mark OConnor folly jazz poster. The type from the old one was very flat and unintegrated with the rich image making. This new type I have hand rendered and then vectorized. I am still refining and working out the wobble text.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Degree Project Redirect

After our first round of presentations today I have made some very critical decisions about the direction in which my project is heading. When I first began this project I was really wanting to focus on cervical cancer awareness. As I began doing my research I was beginning to encounters all of the politics and general disagreement of the topic of teen sexuality. This was becoming a huge problem considering that sex is the leading way to contract cervical cancer. I also found that in most cases girls have hpv that then leads to cervical cancer. May girls have already been vaccinated with Gardisil to prevent a few forms of the hpv. Upon completing my 1st experiment, trying to prove that girls look and act older than parents and adults think they are, I found that parents dont think that the girls I was showing them could be their daughters. And my experiment found itself to be quite unrevealing.

This lead to my new thought, the problem behind the problem, parents have a hard time communicating with teenage girls. This time is hard on both parties. The daughters feel misunderstood and as if they are being held back. They think their parents are generally stupid and dont know anything. Teen girls are such a roll-a-coaster of emotions HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY to having the worst day in the history of worst days. When there is a fight among friends the teenage girl can feel like the world was coming to and end. Teenage girls are full of D-R-A-M-A! This is the time when communication is the hardest because both the parents and teenage daughter are no longer speaking the same language. Not only that but there are many conversations that are hard to have with a teenage girl. Conversations about puberty, love, and sexuality. Also more serious questions like drugs and alcohol which are very present in todays youth culture.

I wanted to refill out my Creative Brief to reflect the new direction in my project.

My question I plan to answer is:

How can graphic design help parents to effectively communicate with their teenage daughters.

Social Objectives

Use this section to list the social objectives or goals for the project.

To aid in the communication breakdown that tends to occur between a teenage girl and her parents. By creating tools which will make conversation between both parties clearer, more accurate information can be conveyed and parents can be more involved in their daughters lives. On the other side teen girls will feel like they can share more information with their parents keeping them in the loop with what is going on in their lives.


Simply put, what do you want to say to your audience? A message can, and usually does, have more than one dimension, especially in addressing a complex issue. In this section, clearly and completely define your primary and, if applicable, secondary messages.

My primary message will be that your teenage years are a few of the most confusing times in a everyones life, especially for a teen girl. Teen girls are notorious for being rather hard to handle in their adolescent years. This is primarily due to their raging hormones and generally sassy attitudes. Distance can easily occur between parents and there young lady. This breakdown in communication can have great consequence when the parents dont know what is going on in the girls life from exposer to drugs and alcohol and even sexual encounters. If daughters feel comfortable talking to their parents then she can look to her parents for guidance and information when approached with these adult decisions.


Use this section to describe your audiences (primary and secondary) for this project or product. (who needs to hear your message?) Include any information that you have about your audience. Be as complete and specific as possible.

My audience will be girls in their teen years 13-18 and their parents. This is due to their general dramatic nature and sassy attitudes this relationship between them and their parents tends to generally weaken during these years. This breakdown can do serious damage to the relationship between the teen and her parents for many years to come.

Communication Stratiges

Use this section to pose and answer strategic questions designed to set the parameters of your Design project. You may wish to speculate on appropriate media.

I would like to create a system of tools that will help teen girls and their parents better communicate with each other. Right now I am thinking through the idea of some sort of kit what would contain elements in which to promote healthy communications. There is also the idea of what way could these individual interact more efficiently? Maybe by embracing other ways of communicating other that face to face. This could be via the internet or go old school and write a letter to each other.I would like to create a mix of print and digital elements all forming a cohesively branded system.

Competitive Landscape

Use this section to list some examples of competitive products, what they are doing, and how they can inform your design process. What has been done previously, and what is currently being addressed? This section is intended to help you contextualize your intended project.

There are any self-help books out there are detail out "how to talk to you daughter", and "how to understand your teen". Rarely are their books for communicating primarily with your teen daughter. Many parents go the wrong route and try to act like there teen girl to understand them. This is not the case. Parents have a very important role in these young ladies lives that they may not understand at the time.

There are also some online forums for parents to talk to each other in hope to find answers among other parents this is assuming that other parents hold the key to understanding your child. No one knows your daughter better than you should.

Alot of parent in todays society turn to counseling as a way to find a way to communicate through other people. A mediator in a sense.


Use this section to list all of the resources that will inform your initial research. You will add more as you progress.

Live Strong Site (article on How to help your teenage daughter)

"The Secrets to Having the Teenage Daughter You Actually Like"; Cheryl S. Guy; 2009

"Raising Girls"; Gisela Preuschoff and Steve Biddulph; 200

The ProfessorsHouse (artical on fighting with your teen daughter)

Effective communication with kids

Communicate with your kids through writing

Spending More time with your teen

Teen Pregnancy

National Research Center for Women and Families (2001). "Early Puberty in Girls". Retrieved 2009-07-22.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Spatial: 5 Points Towards New Architecture

Johnna compiled a list of attributes that each of 5 points of architecture that Le Corbusier outlines, I have added some too.

The Supports: light, dry, ventilated, uncluttered, strong, visual

The Roof Garden: lush, rich, abundant, dense, thick, riotous, tranquil, unwasted, resourceful, repurposed

Freely Designed Floor Plan: free, independent, unconstrained, detached, customizable, flexible, multifunctional, evolving,

Horizontal Windows: knowledge, brightness, gleam, brilliance, glow, awareness, insight, comprehension, space,

Free Design of Facade: multi-faceted, free, independent, unconstrained, detached, decorative, unique,

PPP: Portfolio Pieces for Consideration

Here is the group of my work I have compiled to be considered for my portfolio. I will need to choose the pieces that will best tell the story of the designer I AM!


Interior Design Posters

Refresh Brand