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Christian McCormick

Graphic Design Student



The Day is What You Make It

I chose to letter the phrase, "The Day is What You Make It". I originally discovered the phrase on Instagram; a company that I follow there has been using the phrase in one of their advertising campaigns. It has given me encouragement and inspiration when I've had a rough day or simply haven't felt motivated to do much.

For my brainstorming I chose to create a list of words that relate to the phrase. I wrote down whatever came to my mind and tried not to worry too much about what I was writing. When I was finished I underlined a few words that I felt could capture the feel I wanted to convey as well as help me find suitable images for my mood board.

Next, I assembled my mood board. I focused on the underlined words in my searches. I didn't find too many images but felt that I have enough to capture the feel that I want without relying too much on just one reference. Most important to me are the sun rays, serif alphabet, hammers, and script writing.

For my sketches I chose to sketch the word "Make" in a few different styles. I'm new to hand–lettering but am excited to learn and incorporate it into my designs. I'll post the sketches when I finish them.

I've finished my first sketches and exploration of the word "Make". I had some difficulty keeping the thick serif version aligned as I did not begin with guidelines. To prevent this from happening again I used guidelines for most of the other sketches. So far I like the script however I don't feel it really lends itself to the word. I will probably use a script for the word "Day". As for the other sketches, I'm leaning towards the serif versions, even though the alignment and spacing is off. I really don't care for the building block style of word; it looks too busy and lacks impact. Who knows, when I begin sketching I may even switch it up entirely! This exercise was a great intro to hand–lettering. I can't wait to begin my sketches.

Here are my thumbnail sketches. I haven't yet decided which directions I'd like to go in for my larger sketches, but I'm really liking the sun ray type of effect and will likely choose a thumbnail that utilizes that.

Here is sketch number one, based on the first thumbnail. I chose this layout because I felt that it had a good sense of hiearchy between words and because it fit the theme I was trying to portray. I tried to play off the "building" idea as much as possible, using things like hammers, nails, and dripping paint to create a mood. I plan on doing at least one more sketch of a thumbnail, though I'm not sure which one yet. Feedback would be much appreciated! I really like the Zeppelin idea but am not sure it fits the phrase very well. I may go with the bottom left one and add more emphasis to "day" and "make" instead. We'll see!


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