straight down the line

Week Five Summary: The Design of Noir

Of all of the weeks of ds106, I would have to say that the week of design had more time-consuming tasks for me. I am very interested in design and creating visuals (it may be something I will pursue in the future), but I found myself staying on one task for a longer period of time, specifically with the design assignments (which I will cover later on in this post).

There were tasks this week that involved reading about design and watching design unfold in film. First I read “The Vignelli Canon,” which was a helpful introduction to the basics of design. I was most interested in the intangibles of design and this is discussed in great detail within my post ( In this reading, the main idea, to me, was that every detail matters and this can positively or negatively affect the viewer’s impression of a design; one has to have discipline and control when creating their design. They have to keep in mind they message they are trying to convey to their viewers. Later in the week, I chose to watch “The Big Lebowski” to see how space in the film helps to create design and noir. I had a very difficult time identifying examples of how design and noir interplay within the film’s city-scape, but I did my best by picking out a few examples that could best represent this idea ( As I watched the film, I picked out locations that could easily be used in noir films or have noir qualities to them. I did use one site as a source to help me remember specific places within “The Big Lebowski” so that I could think of the scenes that occurred at each that had qualities of noir (

The Design Blitz was relatively easy to complete since there is some form of design anywhere you look. I was in the Nest for a majority of the pictures I took and I had “500 Days of Summer” in my room to take a photo of the movie cover. It is interesting to truly look at a design and its’ components to see if they are effective in conveying their message. It made me aware of designs all around me and in the future, I will most likely analyze designs a lot more than I already do in daily life because of doing this assignment (

Three Daily Creates were required for this week: They are the following:

1. Make creative hands: My creativity thrives when I am either writing or doing a visual/and or film editing kind of project. I wanted to show both stems of my creativity in this one picture.

Movie editing and writing

2. What’s Your Superpower: The Power of a Contagious Laugh and Smile. I chose to edit these three photos of myself together since they were taken by my friend when I was laughing while he was trying to take a picture. I think that by having contagious happiness, that is a great power or gift to others. I like to think that I can make someone else’s day a little brighter through my laugh or a smile. Anyone can have this power within them so why not use it to bring happiness to others who need it.

The Power of a Contagious Laugh and Smile


3. Old time radio commercials: With this assignment, I downloaded the audio from a 1960’s Avon lipstick commercial and near the end, I added the audio of Lil’ Mama’s “Lip Gloss” song. I wanted to make something humorous and fun and a commercial that would combine two time periods for the same kind of message: this lip stick/gloss will make any woman feel confident and sassy.


As I mentioned before, some of the design assignments were very time consuming. Some that were three stars sometimes were the most complex (more so than one that was 4+ stars). A prime example of this was when I did the assignment “The Ultimate Merger” where you would merge two brand logos together to make one. This was a fun assignment since I combined Starbucks and Android to create “Staroid,” the coffee delivery service that brings you strength, energy boosting coffee (and there are no steroids in it!). It was a 4 and a 1/2 star assignment, but one design assignment I did for Sebastian Crane was 3 stars, yet felt more along the lines of being a 4. I did the assignment labeled “Newspaper Design” and I made the paper show the story of when Sebastian became the new Editor-in-Chief of the Chronicle and had some underlined scandal embedded with how he managed to get his competitor fired to fully secure the position he was given ( The reason this assignment could have been 4 stars is because of the great lengths I had to go through to actually get it in a newspaper format from online template, which would allow me to make the paper, but not download it unless I subscribed and paid $20.00. It was time consuming in that manner and it was frustrating. I did enjoy the final product because it illustrated the devious plan Sebastian got away with to secure his title, but it was a long process. It also put more faces to the characters within his life. Another design assignment I completed was the three start “motivational poster.” I inserted the lantern scene from Tangled with the words “Dream. Open your eyes and see your dreams outside your mind.” I wanted this to motivate viewers to make their dreams realities and I brought in a personal story of how I made one of my dreams real by joining color guard ( I felt that adding this information would make it more personable and it shows that you can make your dreams real, despite any self-doubt. The final design assignment I completed this week was the three- star “READ” poster. In this poster, you had to have a well-known figure or celebrity with a book and have the word “read” on it. I took this opportunity to have Sebastian Crane associated with this idea of reading since he enjoys reading and makes it a daily practice through work and during his free time. I also put an acronym-like idea in the poster with each letter of “read” having a word associated with it to better convey what kind of power reading holds (

Lastly there was the copyright reflection this week, where we read and watched sources detailing copyright information. I really did not know about many of the issues that go into copyright, such as no one can copyright a piece of material within the first 14 years it is published or if possible, have the consent of the publisher or the author. It never occurred to me that this is an issue since it threatens to stall creativity in our generations and younger today. It was interesting to see that as long as the copyright material serves a new and innovative, original purpose, it is just. But who defines that and is it always fair to the author and the person copy writing? It clearly is a complex system and I may still have questions about all of the tails of it later on.

Most of my TDCs were posted on Twitter and I got inspired by last week to create a speech/song remix for a project for my communication class. It is a colmbination of Bsh’s 9/11 speech and Coldplay’s “Fix You.”

I also attempted to do the song lyrics design assignment where you type only the lyrics and have no visual, but I did the assignment wrong. I did like what I created for the ABBA song “The Winner Takes it All,” so at least I got to use some creativity: winner takes it all


Here are most of the comments I made throughout the week on others’ work:


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