Graphic Design and Animation Graduates 2012

Online portfolio and print on demand catalogs for Graphic Design and Animation graduates from the Department of Design 2012. On this page you will find our conference presentations, and by hovering over the menu groups on the left you can read contextual documents. You are welcome to attend our Grad Show, opening on 29 November 2012 at 6pm, and daily from 30 November to 6 December 9.30am – 4pm.

Paul Lafaele

Click for downloadable PORTFOLIO


Gardens are unique in their ability to bring people together (N.Daniel & F.Mackesy 2011)

The aim of this project is to create awareness of Community Gardens to the general Avondale Community but not limited to this locale. Essentially the project is to help bring people within these communities together and in turn create awareness of the benefits in growing their own food. Community have the capacity to bring diverse groups of people in a area such as Avondale which have a diverse demographic of people. The project aimed to identify elements that belonged to a diverse group of Gardeners that would promoted the awareness of gardening in a 3d aesthetic.

As part of my research methodology, I joined the Avondale Community Gardeners who regularly meet at the Rosebank Peninsular, located on Rosebank Road, regularly once a month. Engaging with this community of growers has been a part of the design process in locating specific details around the design elements that would be used during the development of the project.

Avondale Community Gardeners.

Documenting each site visit to the community gardens in and around Avondale with the use of a digital camera and an audio recording device I was able to identify key elements of the community garden(s). It was evident during the sites visits the aesthetics of the handmade, these were reoccurring image in these preliminary images that I took. Berry (2011) describes “If the desire behind all good design is to communicate – an idea, a thought, a message clearly…communication can be most effective if it REVEALS evidence of the human hand”, I took this in the literal sense as gardeners were constantly engaged in hand-made objects.

This was a resourceful community who were able to use recycled materials such as empty plastic bottles, beer crates, pieces of wood, bamboo sticks, sinks and many more to create the equipment needed in a community garden, this was a cheap commonly used practice.

There was something special and something real about this practice within these communities, as Berry (2011) describes “What handmade does have… is the fingerprint of human creation and, more and more, that humanity is what we’re hungry for these days”. In a society were practically everything we need is already made then bought, this practice brings back that handmade aesthetic that has that real quality of the human touch that is rarely seen these days.

Images taken during site visits.

As I continued my commitment to the group and interacting with each other, it was also apparent to me that their efforts and their commitment were a reaction to the current situation regarding food and human communication. Berry (2011) describes ”handmade is a reaction to the overwhelming power of technology, global economic austerity and the lack of genuine tactility, the human touch we’re all so missing so much”.

People are there for many reasons and a few that really spoke out to me was in regards to food and human contact. NZ Herald (2012) reports of the price increase of fruit and vegetables in local supermarkets, this becoming too expensive to the point of going without. Another reason in which one man was heard quoting “I come because I have nothing else to do and need the company”, he also seemed to have no interest in the gardens itself. Does technology have a role in changing the way we communicate, removing the human connection? It is cause by social media site like Facebook and Twitter? Community gardens definitely have there benefits, they offer the alternative, taking a step back.

Berry (2011) “Gardens are unique in their ability to bring people together”.

Community gardeners and volunteers from different backgrounds.

The intended audience for this project is to the community as a whole regardless of race and age, and being part of this community of gardeners and seeing for myself the hard work created by the hands of the people have had the strong influence in the design of the project. The emphasis has been on the handmade aesthetic which has been used to communicate the message.

Images taken during site visits.

Key references were based on the work of designers and artist whose work embodied the aesthetics of the handmade. But to make sure the message would be clearly communicated using this aesthetic, research was also conducted into social action groups.  The objective was to reference their work in order to visualize what the final project would look and to look at how design elements in terms of shape, size, color, text and composition have been used.

Community awareness posters.

These poster designs are just a few of the images I had researched both on line and at various community locations. In these findings I found that the information did not overload the viewer visually, that the message was clear, the color pallet was limited, that a good amount of information was displayed and that the chosen imagery was simple but very effective.

Site visits to local GP, Library and Community Centers.

The next step of the process was to conduct site visits to various community locations such as the local GP, public libraries and community centers to allowed me to survey the intended environment for the design. My findings revealed an overwhelming amount of information in these locations, such as promotional materials and advertising campaigns for various social action groups all squashed into one area.

The concern was the how the design was going to stand out amongst this traffic. Referencing the poster design of social action groups together with the results of the site visits, it was decided that a minimalist approach for the design would be suitable. This idea was supported by the result of the next step of these site visits in which interviews were conducted with members of the public and staff who were present at the time. The aim was to gauge the thoughts and ideas of the public about the way the information was currently (at the time) displayed and how well the information was received.

Confirming my own initial thoughts, the common response that was received from the interviewees was that there was an overload of information. And although there was time in some of these waiting rooms to read all the information, it would become overwhelming in which it would turn the attention to the nearest Woman’s Weekly.

Work of designers using the 3D aesthetic.

The completion of the research involving site visits, community participation and researching design examples helped direct the project further. Referencing once again from the text in which Berry (2011) describes the effectiveness of the human hand in a design (in the literal sense) I research designs which showed this aesthetic. The design house Aesthetically Loyal displayed the work that would became a strong influence within my project. The posters above are digitalised images of 3D objects which was the direction I wanted to go.

My thumbs nails and ideas.

These are just a few thumbnails of possible ideas that were generated from prior research into the community and would eventually result in some good outcomes.

First 3D prototypes.

One designer that I came across which would become a huge influence in my project is designer Xavier Barrade. I was drawn to a particular project where the art of paper craft was used within his poster design, but what really caught my eye was the 3D element. And even though the research into the design of Aesthetically Loyal displayed the 3D imagery, I wanted to take it further.

3D paper crafted posters were created for a new band (at the time) ‘Dry the River’. The attraction was the simplicity of the design with the use of paper craft to create a 3D object of the front body of the horse.

The creation of the 3D horse involved hours of cutting, folding and pasting together but the finished result was a minimalist design where the front body of the horse is all white which is up against an A2 white background and the only color used in this design
was in the text.

Work of Xavier Barrade influenced my work.

Another designer working on the campaign was Sophie Yeoman who created an interactive poster, this followed Barrade’s poster designs. As did Barrade, she used the minimalist approach. Both designs had great outcomes attracting a lot of attention for this band which resulted with online viewing jumping from 10,000 views to 256,000.

Work of Sophie Yeoman.

As a result of this research the 3D aesthetics oppose to a flat surface design was used in the project this I felt would embody the physicality of the community garden and most importantly the aesthetics of the handmade.

Further research led me to other designers who used the art of paper craft. Artist like Ana Serrano (artist), Leo Rosa Borges (designer), Si Scott (Graphic Designer/Illustrator/Artist), Matthew Shlian (Paper Engineer/Designer), Montreal-based designers Kyosuke Nishida, Brian Li, Dominic Liu and many others who used paper craft with a minimalist design.

Si Scott (3D flower poster), Leo Rosa Borges (monster face), Ana Serrano (buildings), Siang Ching (drop of blood), and Montreal Based designers (words can fly)

Research would continue throughout the process of prototyping for the final project. It was clear that the final project would focus on creating a series of 3D posters.

The designs of Xavier Barrade, the Montreal based designers Kyosuke Nishida, Brian Li, Dominic Liu, Matthew Shlian, Ana Serrano, design group Aesthetically Loyal and Siang Ching were the key references for this project. The focus was the minimal use of color and the amount of information had to be considered especially against the 3D object as it was important to have a balance between to two.

For the project this semester I had been working on creating a series of three dimensional posters. Bringing the 3D element into the design was a way to embody the aesthetic of the handmade and physicality of the garden and also to appeal more to the viewer.

I had been working on prototypes of 3D objects of hands, crates, vegetables and prisms. The purpose of the hand was to eventually hold various types of vegetables that would normally grow in a community garden. The crates would demonstrate the resourcefulness of the community group using what materials were available to them and made into equipment and tools for gardens, for example garden boxes, trellis’s, green houses and more. Then we have prisms (far below) which were created as part of a cartographic poster representing roof tops of houses within a community with gardens surrounding these.  All these were aimed at giving the viewer an idea of what was already there in there community and what was available and possible for them to achieve.

Prototypes and research – Hands and Fruit.

Prototype and research for cartographic and crate poster.

The opportunity to explore 3D design for this project have allowed me to realise the skills that I have and have learnt more about and what I can offer as a designer. I find it satisfying being able to work with my hands creating 3D objects and knowing that this can create more added value to the design and to the message.

Berry (2011), “Communication can be most effective if it REVEALS evidence of the human hand.


Design, Chen. “Fingerprint No. 2: The Evolution of Handmade Elements in Graphic Design [Hardcover].” Fingerprint No. 2: The Evolution of Handmade Elements in Graphic Design: Chen Design Associates,Joshua C. Chen,Debbie Millman: 9781600618659: Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Sept. 2012. <;. Colin Berry 2011.

Nepia, Daniel, and Finn Mackesy. “Community Garden Set-up Guide.” EcoMatters. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 Mar. 2012. <;.Pg.1

“NZ Food Prices Rise Again in August.” The New Zealand Herald. N.p., 14 Sept. 2012. Web. 25 Oct. 2012. <;.

“Sarah Austin Design: Social Action Poster.” Sarah Austin Design: Social Action Poster. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 June 2012. <;.

“Social Action Posters.” CHI ’95. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Apr. 2012. <;.

“Aesthetically Loyal.” The Graphic Design Portfolio of Anthony Kolber. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 May 2012. <;.

“Biodynamic Farming Association.” Biodynamic Farming Association. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Apr. 2012. <;.

White, Alex. Thinking in Type: The Practical Philosophy of Typography. New York, NY: Allworth, 2005. Print.

“BioGro: Home.” 302 Found. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2012. <;.

“Creating the Rosebank School Garden.” N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Apr. 2012. <;.

“CUP: Home.” CUP: Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Mar. 2012. <;., n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2012. <;.

“Dry the River Horses (a 3D Paper-craft Poster Project).” YouTube. YouTube, 12 July 2011. Web. 11 May 2012. <;.

“Fears of New Laws ‘unwarranted'” N.p., n.d. Web. 03 May 2012. <;.

“Garden Calendar for the Kitchen Garden – Vegetables and Herbs. See What to Plant Right Now and for next Month.” Garden Calendar to Keep Your Kitchen Garden Growing. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2012. <;.

“The Graphic Imperative.” The Graphic Imperative. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2012. <;.

“The Guerrilla Gardening Home Page.” The Guerrilla Gardening Homepage. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Apr. 2012. <;.

New Zealand. Council. Auckland Council. Policies. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Mar. 2012. <;.

“Posters for The Victory Garden of Tomorrow: Art of Joe Wirtheim.” Posters for The Victory Garden of Tomorrow: Art of Joe Wirtheim. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2012. <;.


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