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Pulpy Self Representation

Once I hit the lesson where I found out you could make .png maps to place drawables to, I started messing with some ideas I was having. I'd been wanting to make sort of a self-representative, almost iconographic piece, and I finally had the tools to make one that I could really have fun with.

I struggled with finding one single thing that's representative of me, so I decided to include a ton of different ideas:

First and foremost, I used my face as a map to plot the squares to. I set up my camera and took a bunch of photos of my face while wearing a black shirt against a dark wall in order to easily invert and mask my face and neck out. I made sure to leave the bits of hair in there because I was hoping it'd create a sort of dissolving effect at the top of my head with the shapes I'd planned to attach. 

I also knew that my blocky glasses are kind of my identifier. I've had them for years, and if I don't wear them, even my close friends don't recognize me sometimes. So I had to include those for sure. I cooked up a little simplified, geometric representation of the glasses and set them aside for later. 

I knew that I wanted to keep the design clean and geometric because that's just a style I've been working with a lot lately, and because I'm kind of enamored with the idea of the pixel and with the 8-bit aesthetic, so I made a little square svg to use as my drawable. 

As for color choices, I started thinking about complimentary color schemes that I like. Blue/Orange has always been a favorite. I think it has something to do with how many times I've watched Pulp Fiction. Next time you're watching it, really pay attention to the colors. In almost EVERY shot, the blue/orange scheme is present even if it's muted or understated at times. So I decided to go with colors I pulled from stills of the movie (and a grey for good measure).

 

I set the drawables to attach themselves onto the face map, set the size to vary between 5 and 25, the rotation to be any angle at all, and ran the sketch a few times and saved the results as PDFs. 

I finally pulled the one that I liked the most into Illustrator and tweaked some of the placement of the squares.

I liked it, so I placed the glasses from earlier on it, and the piece really started to come together. It's crazy how with the addition of them, it really reads as a face instead of a mass of squares.

Then I added this slight gradient into the background. I still can't decide if it's better with or without it. 

Either way, this is the final piece! Let me know if you have any feedback for me.

Thanks for an absolutely amazing class! I can't wait to incorporate what I've learned into my work more.

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