Category: Podcast cover (Photoshop)

TY1SK Let’s Talk Type

Design ideas and design process

Podcast Cover Design 1
Podcast Cover Design 2
Podcast Cover Design 3

 

 

 

 

 

Analysing an existing podcast cover

My design process started off with analysing existing podcast covers which includes ‘The Michelle Obama Podcast’. With the podcast cover, I examined the main layout such as, where the title was located and where the focus was.

For this cover, the title is located at the bottom, the streaming platform is at the top and the main focus is in the centre with Michelle Obama’s photo. With this, I created my 3rd design that had the main properties of this cover. I also mimicked the title to have the same style for example ‘The Typography Podcast’. Personally I don’t think it’s very successful as it doesn’t give the same impact, this could be by not having a better image and clarity.

Generating ideas

Next I started a word generation for the name of my podcast and some elements that I may use in the design process. With my 2 designs, ‘Let’s Talk Type’ and ‘Type Cast’ were used as my titles. I chose them as they felt catchy and memorable. The elements were different tools that the podcast cover could have like a microphone.

Layering of text
Layering of text

For the 1st design, I used the word ‘paper’ to start off my background. With this, I built up the idea of layering torn pieces of paper. It added texture and depth to the background. ‘Let’s talk type’ was the title I chose. To continue the feeling of depth, I had different fonts for each layer. This made the title fun and different whilst keeping the name distinguishable.

Overview of all ideas
Overview of all ideas

The 2nd design was the simplest. First, I chose some paint splatters that I made and scanned. With this, I manipulated the splatters to show the title ‘Type Cast’. The colour decision of using black and white was made because they have the highest contrast and made it stand out. I tested using other colours asides from white however, none made the same effect as white looks with black.

Software tutorials

Adobe Photoshop was already something that I was familiar with. I knew the basic tools that are shown on the right side of the screen. The first video that I watched shows a man creating his own podcast cover titled ‘Hungry for returns’. He starts off with writing the type first using the type tool. After this, he plays with the placement of each word on the page by rotating it or flipping it. To make the title stand out he adds a background colour to only the type. Watching this video allowed me to understand his design process and the meaning of each element that he uses. It gives me a new perspective in approaching my own podcast cover. To colour, he would use the pen tool to create a square, then paint the space with the paintbrush tool. This gave me another example of another way to create a filled shape; usually I would use the marquee tool to give me the rectangular shape, then fill it with the colour. The mask tool was also something that was used. It’s purpose is to mask the areas chosen and make it transparent. This is a tool that I was unfamiliar with but with the aid of the video, I now know what it does. 

The second video I watched was about how to make mock up files on Photoshop. The reason that I watched this video was out of curiosity and interest after I used a mock-up file for my podcast cover. I wanted to know how to do it because it could be helpful for future subjects. This can be especially helpful if I can’t find a specific mock-up file, I could just make it. Making mock-up files is a skill that I definitely want to acquire because it can potentially be very useful.
I also want to improve on more technical skills by exploring what each of the drop down menus do as well as potential shortcuts – that could be important to make working more efficient. 

Resources for research and inspiration 

Firstly, I researched existing podcast covers and came across a blog. The blog spoke about the ‘45 Best podcast of 2020’. Upon reading it, I found that it covered a lot of genres and that there was no correlation in genre. The designs of the covers are varied from minimalism to busy designs. The reason I chose ‘The Michelle Obama podcast’ was that it was one of the few that used photography. It also had a neat layout that I’d like to try and incorporate in my cover. Overall, it gave me the most inspiration from the layout to the use of colour. 

The 2nd website I came across was titled ‘How to design a podcast cover’. This blog points out step-by-step what to have and add to your podcast cover. It stresses on the designer or founder thinking about the meaning and what the podcast will do. This is important as it gets the message across the target audience and will possibly attract them to listen to the podcast. The website made me think about the details that are key to making a successful podcast cover. With this knowledge, I tried to apply it on my covers.
The writer also spoke about colour theory and how colour can affect the impression of an audience. Using colours that compliment each other is more pleasing. Certain colours can also set the mood, for example red could mean anger or crime and yellow could represent a happy and light hearted content. This made me think of what I’m representing to the audience and if it’s correct. 

1 = https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uXPRZTxNm0M 

2 = https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VnBMQHdQZaA

3 = https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/life/entertainment/g28353940/best-podcasts/ 

4 = https://99designs.co.uk/blog/design-other/how-to-design-a-podcast-cover-the-ultimate-guide/

Colourful Podcast Covers

This weeks skills for design practice task was to design three covers for a typography and graphic design podcast. This was a really enjoyable task which helped me develop some of my existing skills on photoshop. The outcome I like the most is the ‘typography podcast every Sunday’ one just because it looks a bit more professional than the other two.

Design Podcast Cover with Aj

Design ideas and design process

Podcast covers are a visual representation of what the talk is about. It connects the creator to the listener, so for my first podcast cover, I started off with an illustration of me.

First Image

Figure 1 (Creative Talk Final Design)

The first podcast cover draft I did not like it because it was too busy. Each logo was not able to show, and it lacked space, so for the final design, I shrunk it. I decided to have blue and pink as the background colour because they are light colours and would work with the illustration rather than against it. This allows the viewers to see each logos without the illustration clashing with each other.

The second draft, I reduce the numbers of adobe app logo I should use and colour. I used a light shade of blue. However, the image looked boring to me, and the colours did not seem to blend, which resulted in me darkening the illustration complexion. I could not choose the right shade of blue I wanted to use, thus me combining them and doing a half and half background.

I wanted to show some of the most used creative cloud software for graphics design. However, I edited the logo colour to match the colour scheme of the podcast. I like the final image because I was able to use space to surround each element of my design. I darken her skin tones because I wanted her to stand out more from the background.

 

Figure 2 (Creative Talk Illustration Draft)
Figure 3 ( Creative Talk Second Draft)
Figure 4 ( Creative Talk Second Draft)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Second Image

Figure 5 (Typography with Aj Final Design)

The image gave me an indie aesthetic which is I like because it allows me to experiment with less professional fonts. I thought it was interesting to put different typeface on her hair, and it stood out more because the hair colour is black.

I decided to not use the first and second background because the colour was too bright. The reason I first started with a bright colour was that from my inspiration, it used bright colours; however, I felt the colourful pastel works best cause it calm and aesthetically pleasing.

 

 

Figure 6 (Typography with Aj Illustration Draft)
Figure 7 (Typography with Aj First Draft

 

Figure 8 (Typography with Aj Second Draft)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Third Image

Figure 9 (Graphic Talk Final Design)

The third podcast cover I used a cutting tool to bring the sculpture about and show the flowers. This was the easiest to among the three and only involved me using the cutting tool and watching a simple tutorial on how to create a flower sculpture effect.

I wanted to show artwork that is typically done on photoshop.  I like it because the idea of flowers coming out of art sculpture is simple but aesthetically pleasing. It is also a different way of doing a podcast cover without having to have a self-illustration but yet still looking interesting and a showing skill.

The only problem I had with this podcast cover was what to do with the background without making the cover too busy.

Figure 10 (Graphic Talk First Draft)

I used the warp tool to create the yellow background behind the sculpture. I initially thought the colour yellow brought out the sculpture; however, after analysing it more, I realise it was pointless to have it on the podcast and decided to just keep it simple.

 

 

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Software tutorials

Youtube Tutorials Links: 

  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAzM_MRwN-U&t=10s
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLqk1LrHlKc&t=884s

For this project, I did not use that much tutorials to guide me with my work as I am already familiar with the essential feature of photoshop. However, I did watch videos for how to draw using illustrator and that helped me for two of my podcasts covers.

My initial plan was to watch a tutorial on how to draw on Photoshop. Still, most of the tutorials were complicated and outdated, so I decided to use illustrator because it was more beneficial. I was not confident in my skill in illustrator, and this was my first time using it.

With the tutorial, I was able to get a basic understanding of the tools I was meant to use. I drew the illustration using my laptop pen, not realizing that I could have just used the pen tool which could have saved me a lot of time. I used the pen tool in my second illustration and the image came out neater

I designed my background with photoshop, the tools I used the most was the Image Adjustment: colour balance and hue/saturation tools. The goal was to change the colours of the adobe app to pink so that it can match the laptop and desk.

My third podcast, I watched a tutorial on how to design a flower portrait. The tutorial was simple and involve mainly using the cutting tool. The reason this tutorial was helpful was that I did not know how to place the flowers on the sculpture to show the effect of it emerging from the sculpture.

I do not believe I got the effect to its full potential. However, I do like how it stands out and people can easily identify what I am trying to illustrate.

The skills I need to improve are how to follow through with an idea. Doing this work, I have had so many ideas for what I would like to do with the podcast cover. However, I lack the skills to do them, and that leads to me abandoning the idea and getting frustrated.

This was my first time doing digital drawing and the result turning out nice. I am very proud of the works I produced, so I wanted to be included in my cover.

Through the tutorials, I was able to learn how to draw digitally. Although I am proud of what I have done with more knowledge and practice on photoshop, I feel like would have done better.

 

 

Resources for research and inspiration

When trying to think of ideas for a project, I always look through Pinterest an image-sharing app to look for inspirations for my work. When browsing what really caught my eyes were pastel colours for podcast cover, flower sculpture effect and the cartoon illustration of the podcast creator, I combined those element and used it to create my podcast illustrations.

Figure 11 (Resource 1  Podcast Example)

When researching it was challenging to figure out what type of design, I wanted to have for my podcast cover. I decided to use fig 11 and fig 12 because of the simplicity and layout of the designs, I felt it would be the best inspiration for a podcast design.

I found the resources for my design interesting cause it has a soft look to it and the colours are calm. I like the style of the podcast cover and how the background seems to work with the illustration rather than against it, which is an aspect I implemented in my design.

The resources design was out my comfort zone and encourage me to learn a new skill and broaden my knowledge on photoshop, which has been very beneficial.

Inspiration for the name of my first podcast cover “Creative Talk” was the adobe software “Creative Cloud” I felt the name brought all the elements of my artwork together and connects gives a glimpse of what this podcast is about.

From an article by Price, I learnt that a podcast cover is what connects the listeners to the podcast.  “That it is very important how you design a podcast cover that why most of my podcast designs have illustration because I wanted to set the mood and build the world of your show before the audience even starts listening.” (M Price, 2017)

Figure 12 Resource 2 ( Sculpture Flower Effect)

Podcast covers should not be too busy and chaotic with load colours because this is what connects the listeners to the creator.

Figure 14 ( Podcast Example 2)

 

 

Exploring different tools in Photoshop

Design ideas and processes

When been having told that we would choose which task we could choose to talk about, my first instinct was to choose the photoshop task.

Fig 1 Blue background

For my first design idea, fig1, I started off by creating the background for this. I did this by selecting the background layer, then choosing a colour to change the colour. Once I chose this light blue colour and used the gradient tool. The gradient tool allowed me to get a very slight change of light, where it looks like a different perspective.

 

 

Once I did that I then decided to include some text, this was the next step in creating my design, as I didn’t want to get too confused when adding in my images for this design. There are two colours that I have also used for each word, and I did this to ensure that it didn’t have a stale and dull look to it. The first word was typographic and I wanted to make sure that this was all caps, to make sure it’s as clear as possible to read.

 

The next thing that I did, was that I decided to try to then use another colour for the second word for this title of the podcast cover. The second colour that I used for this was white. For this step, I also made sure that this white text which said ‘PODCAST’ was behind the typographic font, also a lot larger than the other word. This achieved a very simple but effective look to the whole design.

 

Fig 3 -Second word, white fon
Fig 4 -Completed Design 1

The next step and thing that I did to this design, was that I included four images, and three of these images were the same, however, I wanted to ensure that the three images in Fig 4, were all the same size however I did change the orientation of these three images. The fourth image that was included was an image of a microphone and a headset.

 

Fig 5 – Completed Design 2

Within my second design idea (Fig 5) I was hoping to try new things within photoshop. One of them was trying to attempt and implement shapes and different shades of a certain colour to this particular design. I wanted to ensure that the gradient of the design, was a match for the colours of the title of the cover, and for the shapes that I included within this design as well.

 

 

Fig 6- Completed Design 3

For my final design, Fig 6, I started off with this idea of various colours open, and also from google, I did have quite a few options of colour designs I was looking at. Eventually, I decided to go for another very intriguing colour or colours. I went with green,  yellow and white.

 

Software Tutorials

I have been using YouTube to get inspiration and to also gather the basic foundation of how to actually use Adobe Photoshop, because of the fact that I am still learning and would class myself as a beginner at using this software.
Since the videos and tutorials on YouTube were made to be very specific and also sometimes very general and vague. This meant that for me whilst trying to gather information and knowledge on how to do all of these tasks on Photoshop, was quite a user-friendly experience. This was also great for me, for keeping a track of what I know and also don’t know, as I watched a playlist of videos to help me understand how to use this software. Whilst doing this I think that I would have been less likely to look at the videos again and again, and not forgot anything.

Another thing I used was actually going on Photoshop and then comparing my work to other professional work. For example, there are a lot of designers that have uploaded their work online for all of us to see. This gave me a good idea of how a podcast cover was supposed to look like. For example, the Joe Rogan podcast was one of the images I was looking at from the internet. These tools actually did help me develop my skills due to the fact that they allowed me to look at which areas I needed to go back on and learn how to complete them. For example, when I was struggling with certain functions of each tool on Photoshop, I went back to the YouTube videos I had open and referred to it to ensure it was the right way to do it. The main skill I want to develop further is drawing in Photoshop.

 

Resources for research and inspiration

I have been again using a lot of sources from YouTube, which are both very detailed for tutorials and obviously an inspiration. People that upload videos on YouTube have a lot of passion for Graphic Design, and they want to upload their work and how they created their work. This is why I think that this is one of the best sources of information, and definitely an inspiration to use due to the fact that it has millions of pieces of work people have made. The videos that I watched did actually help me develop my ideas because of the fact that when I was struggling with finding ways to add character to a plain design, they said to make sure you do have a structure and some symmetry within your design.

The video I used for the most inspiration was https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4i2F7zLjS7c&list=PL6LaxAQbT3qkjNy3VbM0yd6KnLKxpg1X1&index=9

This video had quite a few tips and tricks of thinking outside of the box and using your mind in a lot of ways to look at designs and the software as one. Due to this, I created all three of my designs with this mindset. From this inspiration, I have definitely learnt a lot. The topics that I would like to explore further would be to ensure that I am very strong and confident with using images as text, and text as images. In a way to look at them both at different perspectives, because there are definitely ways of doing this. With all of these videos and people online helping me have different perspectives will always improve my work in ways, even I will not realise.

 

Exploring the basics of photoshop

Design ideas and Process

Design 1:

I saw a YouTube tutorial which involved a messy, scribble- like approach and I thought this would be a good fit for typography as it reminded me of script and calligraphy. I included a lamp as it gave the image a warm feeling, like a podcast might and it also quite literally shed light on something and an insightful podcast should be illuminating. I thought the title script tease was a good pun (strip tease). I was looking through photos I had on my camera for inspiration, when I saw a photo of a streetlamp in dusk. I thought this would be good for a podcast image as it had an atmosphere like it was illuminating some foggy subject.

I opened this photo on photoshop, where I erased a lot of colour from the image so that it would have less noise and fewer colours. I then created a brush from scratch using scribbles I had made with the pen tool. I used this brush to create a scribble behind the lamp, which I then turned into a clipping mask. This made the lamp look like a scribbled drawing. To complete the image, I added text in a script front as with worked in harmony since it looked like part of the scribble.

Design 2:

For my second design, I wanted something a little more straightforward. I thought a marble texture would look very eye-catching, particularly if it used complimentary colours. The pattern was easily achieved by using the liquefy tool on an arrangement of different colours.

To give the podcast branding opportunities I needed to add a title. This required a minimalist approach as anything else would me the psychedelic picture loud and hard to look at. I placed a white square with a low opacity over it, and cut out the title so that it was written with negative space. The typeface I used was Helvetica, which is well suited to minimalism.

Design 3:

The liquefy effect I used on design 2 really inspired me, and that I wanted to create an even more psychedelic design. I wanted to create a design with a retro feel, as my last design felt quite contemporary. One of the ways I did this was to reuse a texture I downloaded for the first design because it gave an aged, grainy texture. To make my design more visually striking I used the whole colour spectrum which breaks the rules a little bit, but what better way to stand out from the crowd?

To add more contrast to this design, I titled it ‘blackletter’ which seemed the polar opposite to the 80s psychedelic effect I was creating.
I then used the liquefy function to create the appearance of paint dribbling down the colours, causing them to blend.

Software tutorials

  • Scribble effect: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MPb9_QSYq0&feature=emb_logo
    I used this tutorial to develop idea 1. While I may not need to make the effect ever again, it was very useful to me as I learned how to make a custom brush from scratch. This means that for a more demanding photoshop project I will be able to use this to make artwork quicker. Moving forward, I want to develop my brush making skills so that I can tailor a tool for any brief. One thing that is impressive about this effect is that it looks like it would take a lot longer to do than it really does. I think what this means is that there is almost always going to be a quick way of doing something on photoshop.
  • Marble effect: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=loIjVxLb2Gg
    This was used primarily for idea 2, but because I really liked the aesthetic it created, I also used it in a small part of idea 3. This was actually quite a simple photoshop function, but I hadn’t used it before. This tutorial showed me that a very wide range of textures can be made through photoshop, and are definitely not limited to the images you open in the software. Here I have created a simple pattern, but with a change of colour and brush weight, it could easily be water, or any other liquid.
  •  Text cut out: http://photoshoptrainingchannel.com/editable-cutout-text-photoshop/

The text cut out was a better way of doing something which is a basic photoshop trick. Before, I thought I had to created a clipping mask, but this process has greatly streamlined that. I found photoshop quite overwhelming to begin with, but it is shortcuts like these that will really come in useful for the future. They also help to make complex processes seem more straightforward. I think that in the future I want to improve at finding more shortcuts like this, to be as efficient as possible.

Resources for research and inspiration

  • Paper texture: https://www.mediafire.com/view/jatp59cw828hxd0/Texture.jpg/file

Although I found the paper texture through a YouTube tutorial for my first idea, it actually inspired me to create my third idea. I think I should endeavour to get the most use out of textures that are freely available through the internet because the more I have saved, the wider range of aesthetics that I can produce.

  • Retro packaging: https://www.beatsinabundance.com/blog/nostalgic-vhs-packaging-design

The distressed paper texture that I found reminded me of vintage packaging, particularly that of the 80s. These designs tend to have contrasting colours and the designs really catch your attention in a way that minimalist designs of today maybe don’t. Perhaps then, something I could take away from this is that when looking for examples or inspiration, I should remember to look at designs from across time. A vintage design could be useful as it might break typical conventions but in only such a way that it will still obey rules. You would simply be working along a different era’s guidelines.

  • Photos from my own camera

For my first idea, I looked through the photos on my camera to generate ideas. I think this is an important thing to do because it allows you to draw from your own experiences, which make your design unique as it is more personal to you. Furthermore, I think photography can be used to build up a catalogue of impactful images that you can revisit to tackle a brief. Potentially, it is also a visual way of making a note of good design that you may see out in the world.