Designing with Tom Mix in Malaysia

I had actually started doing this design prior to the official start of #western106 back in October. I was starting to look at cowboys and media.  Tom Mix was the tangent I was reading – who he was etc.

I found these in my files as I was cleaning up things. I had forgotten it was a quest to try and create a design assignment for #western106. Good community practice is if you create or suggest an assignment, you need to do the assignment and provide the first example for others to take off from and improve and extend.

I had seen an article someone suggested on Malaysian puppet art and super heroes –  The visuals stood out and fascinated me and I immediately thought #ds106 could really do this justice and create many different rifs.

I started playing with the concept in the #western106 theme rather than superheroes. I had actually gotten to a point of creating some pieces, but put it aside thinking I would come back to it and actually make it into something more complete.

Just want to get it posted so I remember to get back to it. I still think this could be really cool. I have some memory of looking ofr patterns so that they were part of the design. The holes for light seemed to be necessary as well  – and how do you put in the sticks??? From the outcomes I have right now – not sure I hit the concept I was going for – which is why they were probably not posted and just loaded into Flickr for keeping. I also remember using multiple applications. Photo Shop, Paper53 – so again – never figured out a path to the end result I was going for….

So here they are – maybe someone else can figure out how to make it a viable assignment or maybe I will get back to it again in the future. And with the shadows – doesn’t that shout out gif to you?


Tales of DS106 – Fall 2015 Coming Soon!

Tales of DS106
Tales of DS106 Fall 2015

Looking ahead. A little over saturated with No. 6 after the last few creations and fairy tales needing a little kick in my mind to focus. I should be working on radio show things – but sort of lost in figuring out exactly what to do or work on yet. More than anything I was realizing I need to make a new banner for the blog as the season changes and haven’t decided what it is going to be yet. So shiny object chasing for a few days!

My first direction was to start working on family stories. One of my own goals with ds106 was to improve skills so I could use the tons of photos, video, sound, and stories of family and begin threading it together for those around now and in the future. Real stories seem far more complex than creative stories. After a day of organizing files I realized I have a TON of prep work and need to figure out a strand to start creating the pieces first.

The comic book covers for Tales of DS106 for the fall UMW cohort looked interesting. As a quick practice I decided to create one for the upcoming session. I will probably follow along as I love seeing the work the students create and the twists and turns. I am not holding myself to a schedule of trying to keep up with them this round at least that is my thought at this time – but definitely follow and support them in their work. I am moving into #4life and will continue TDC and work on projects but not within the Friday to Friday schedule and maybe not even on the same areas of focus. I will let it up to serendipity as they create and find new ways to do things that look interesting to do as well.


  • Inspiration and style guide from:
  • Paul Bond graphic from: header
  • Jim Groom Graphic from his avatars
  • Bitmoji avatar graphic from my account
  • Created rectangle for upper third and filled with color
  • Added two vertical rectangles for side and filled with color
  • Downloaded and Installed PostCrypt Font from
  • Added Filter>Noise to lessen the abruptness of color of the coverTales2015cover
  • Added a rectangle as a horizontal divider to separate sections. I wanted to have a drop shadow – but moved on instead of trying at this point.
  • Figured out how to change the line spacing by using the properties menu when in Text mode – helps a lot!!! Before I would create each line and try and place them!
  • Would like to have the title outlined text instead of all one color – another thing to discover and master.
  • I did use Photoshop – as before mentioned – I have it so use it.
  • And of course – had to GIF it. 🙂 did this by creating two single graphics and set them at .1 sec in timeline.

From here  I may begin to create a cover for each family member for their story. I plan to use many media and assemble in a flipbook format so that each story can have all of its pieces and tangents instead of a summary like overview. Still thinking it out.Getting family to collaborate is harder than opening up to the ds106 community. 🙂

Update: My sister-in-law has been awesome at providing new content and will be visiting this month – so her help will probably be just in time to kick off something with her portion of the family story. Once that is in place I think my girls will get the idea and other family so then it will be up to me to keep up with things!

Challenge from Ben Rimes

I saw a post in Twitter today about a possible assignment for the #ds106 assignment bank.

Looking at the sample it was point on.  A great assignment for design and working on Photoshop or GIMP skills. The sample is part of an Adobe Education Lesson. (you need to set up yourself as a member to get access to – free to join)

I had some time so decided to take the challenge from @mdvfunes (Mariana Funes) and @techsavvyed (Ben Rimes). I also totally agree with Ben in completing something myself before asking others to do similar tasks. Which is probably why I felt so compelled to complete this after opening my beak and suggesting he submit it to the assignment bank. I hope he does try it as well – I would love to see what he comes up with creates.

Originally a lesson for middle and high school students the instructions require a size of canvas and other parameters. There is also a pre-established list of movie combinations to choose from, most likely to keep students working in a lab situation over a week. A classroom situation is not always the best for creating. 50 minutes at a crack of starting up and shutting down. Someday classrooms will change. I think students in a week-long unit an hour at a time have an added burden in creating. Just think of what they might do if allowed to follow their own creative clock! Okay – back to the work….

I decided to use Roman Holiday and National Lampoon’s Vacation as my Movie Mates.

Finding various posters and images for each movie I settled on about 3 from each that had pretty good graphics to start. I used the BluRay cover for Vacation as it was more to the style of the Roman Holiday posters and a better match for combining. Next was pulling out the objects that I thought I could use in a new rendition of a meld. Each object was cut, blended, shaped, saved and copied to a working canvas. I did most of it by sight and sense using layers for each object, text block and the background.

I found a shared template for movie poster credits that helped with creating the text style for the credits.  As I was looking for some advice on creating the credits box I found a great WIKI on graphic design that includes a section on movie posters. I probably should have reviewed this first – but now have it bookmarked for a next creation.

I have two versions of the poster. Still not totally happy with the layout. BUT – I am going to put this one to rest at this point and move on to adapting the task to creating a movie poster for the Burgeron Family Summer Trailer gathering this summer. My thought is to combine Bernie Burgeron (my character) with some of the others in the family and their stories from last summer leading to the Fairytale festival this year. We will see if this comes together or not…..

Thanks for the challenge Ben and Mariana – it was a fun few hours. I’d rate this assignment as 3 stars – maybe 4 if there was more tied to a genre or character.

Roman Holiday Vacation

Movie Poster Meld v2

The assignment is available in the bank here.

Hot Man of Eastside



Design work for Unit 6/7 – Create a Poster/Logo for character and radio show

Working on a design poster for announcing the audio creation of learning units 6/7. My audio event will be a part of the story of my character – Jerry. Location of the story is on the Eastside of Milwaukee.  I chose this photo for a few reasons – he looks handsome and alluring – who wouldn’t want to tune in? It helps keep this short chapter of the story somewhat in a #noir theme. Something about cigarettes isn’t it?

I brought the Eastside colors in thru use of orange and gray/black. Enough to add some punch, but still keep the black and white feel of the photo graph. I used the heavier saturation for the large E to balance out the orange block on the other side. The lower edge of the E is eye level with the subject to take the viewer’s eye from title to face. Teh eye then should travel down the arm to the ds106 radio tag. Any feedback on placement effect or tweaks welcome.

jerryposterfilterednoiseThis next shown version I added a noise filter to soften the photo. Playing with filters yet as another extension of PS. May need to go in and brighten the orange again for this to work.

Prior to feedback from others, the poster had a halo effect and still looked a little choppy and should we say – “photoshopped”. Using some input from others I was able to go in and use more tools, broaden my depth into PS and come up with the poster at the beginning of this post.

Here is the first keeper that was put out for feedback.

Hot man of Eastside - ds106 poster

Another version I considered was to make it bold and use a stronger background – but I am leaning towards the above example as more effective. Some edge work needs to be done to clean up if the one below would be used. I abandoned it at this stage and began work on the above option when it didn’t feel like it was working.

ds106 Poster

Now time to start focusing on audio. Intro and exit bumpers and theme song.