Mini Brief – Branded Character Designs (inc. Character Roles & Jobs)

This project was given to Yr1 Games & Animation students as part of their Creative Futures module, with the aim of developing three areas: 1 – Ideation, their ability to generate ideas from scratch; 2 – Graphic Design, their ability to invent brands and logos that look appropriate to given roles and character designs; 3 – Redevelopment of Concept, their ability to adapt one design to fit a second, or subsequent brief.
As well as the obvious ideation involved in the project, it also serves to point out some short comings in Yr1 students with regard to their attentiveness or awareness of the people and job roles around them, and how development of that attentiveness can aid them in project development.

Everyday we encounter a number of people who work, play or move through our peripheral vision that are wearing the branding of the company they work for, the fashion house that their clothes are made by, or some product they identify with (be it a CD, a game, or a film etc.).

More often than not, that brand/logo will have been designed by trained creative, in many cases adapted to be printed on the uniform/outfit item of the wearer.

More often than not, developing fictional brands for use in Entertainment Media is harder than it looks.

So it comes in handy if you have practiced your graphic design skills.

Okay, for this short project you are required to go through a number of stages/processes.

Who Do You Know? - Example Job Spider-gram

1 – You are to develop a spider-gram (see above) that outlines your circle of friends, your close and distant family, and the people they know or speak of, and attach to those people their jobs, or roles within society (as best you can, obviously – but do go home and ask questions).

2 – Examine these roles and make a second list identifying those that would see the individual wear some form of branded clothing or logo or uniform badge. What do these logo’s/branding artefacts look like, Perhaps find a range of examples of similar Graphical Elements and create a reference resource… do similar companies or job roles tend to have similar identities? For example, do delivery and logistics company drivers generally look like delivery and logistics company drivers? Do all police badges, look like police badges the world over?

As an aside, but an important one, what kind of type is associated with particular uniform or job role branding? …and Why?

3 – Choose one job role from the list you made in section two and develop a logo or brand image for a fictional organisation in a similar field (not just the first one that hits the paper, develop your ideas!).

4a – Design a character that wears this uniform.

The character can be designed as the hero/avatar of an Animation or Game, or it can be a background/secondary character or NPC.

They can be human-iform, anthro, alien/creature designs, robots etc. The setting/mise-en-scène can be any genre: contemporary, historical, fantasy historical, SF… but must, in the first instance, appear “naturalistic” (i.e. not stylised).

4b –  …the second instance of your character should appear stylised… i.e. cartoon-like, truncated, a pixel-art variant, “chibi” style, or a platformer sprite style.

5 – This “pair” of designs should be finished/coloured, and finally be placed side-by-side on a presentation sheet.

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Don’t forget to look at the book, David Perry on Games Design from the studio bookshelf. It should spur you on to greater heights of list making. And if you want to look at diversification of styles around a single character, you can’t do much better than Stanley (ArtGerm) Lau’s Pepper Project.

This brief is a variant of a more open brief called “Who do you know?” which can be found >HERE<
More creative mini-briefs can be found >HERE<
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~ by hesir on November 17, 2014.

One Response to “Mini Brief – Branded Character Designs (inc. Character Roles & Jobs)”

  1. […] This is were you can find the Brief […]

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