Category: Podcast cover (Photoshop)

Photoshop Task – Podcast Covers

Design ideas and design process

Podcast cover research

For my Photoshop task, I decided to create three completely different podcast covers. My first idea focused on my office life and ‘The Everyday’ life of a designer. I wanted to the text to be bold against the background image so opted for a black and white photograph of a work colleague. From here I decided that yellow would pair nicely and stand out well against the photo so chose this for my font colour. After researching podcast covers, it became apparent that graphic illustrations are often used to accompany titles. This gave me the idea to add diagonal lines to create a platform for the text to protrude – I’d previously tried drop shadows and outer glow effects but didn’t feel as though they made enough of an impact. To the left, you’ll also see what it looked like without any kind of effects or extra graphics. I also thought that if for whatever reason, I decided to make a series of podcast covers, the lines could be a reoccurring theme throughout the covers.

Design before adding any graphic illustrations.
Original Base Image

For my second idea, I decided I wanted to go really out there and push myself to polish up skills and learn new ones. I’d previously played around with the double exposure technique but decided to step it up by using multiple images.

Firstly, I decided the topic of my podcast would be ‘Design in Gaming.’ I chose this as I’d previously attended a Gaming Festival so thought I’d use imagery I’d taken at the event. I chose the saluting figuring as my base image – this would be the outline for my multiple exposures. I started by using the polygonal lasso tool to cut around the edges of the figure – alternatively, I could have used the magnetic lasso tool. I then inverted my selection by using the shortcut command+shift+i and from here deleted the background. The exposure effect was then created by dragging a new image into the document; I then altered the opacity so I could position where I wanted it and once happy with the position selected command and clicked the saluting figures layer. By then selecting the other images layer and adding a vector mask it created a silhouette of the saluting figure.

Close up of all the different images within the base image.

From here, I was able to use the brush tool in the colour black to fade out sections of the top layer image – this allowed for detail from the original image to be seen. I chose the brush tool to remove sections out, rather than than the eraser because by using the brush in the colour white I’m able to add the faded sections back in. I then repeated this process with a variety of images and added a gradient fill across all layers to add the blue and green effect. I finished by altering the exposure, contrast, whites and blacks to make colours darker and more defined.

Gaming Podcast research

I opted for a simple grey background with paint splatters in the same colours as the gradient. I’d done some research into gaming podcasts and they often used dark backgrounds with pop colours so I thought this would relate nicely (see image on the right). I also wanted a simple font so it stood out against the complex imagery. Looking back, this is probably the thing I would experiment with more. I don’t think it relates well to the rest of the design and almost looks out of place. From my research, gaming podcasts often rely on bold text with minimal imagery – my design is quite the opposite and therefore if published could go one of two ways.

Photoshop Layers

For my final podcast design, since I’d previously focused on bold imagery, I thought I’d focus more on the text. I found this image on Unsplash and liked the idea of making use of the green space. I started by cutting around the girl and blanket and duplicated the layer (command+j). This was so I could layer the text in between the two image layers to create a tucked behind effect. The image on the left shows my layers and how I positioned them. On reflection, I think I should have used the stamp tool to remove the text from all over the book. This would have made the overall design look a little cleaner.

My final designs:

Final podcast cover 1
Final podcast cover 2
Final podcast cover 3

Software tutorials

The biggest challenge for the Photoshop project was brushing up on skills I haven’t used in a while, such as; double exposure and outlining text.

For my ‘Design in Gaming’ podcast cover, a lot of the skills and shortcuts I used I already had an understanding of. I’d also previously experimented with double exposures but not to the extent of using 8+ images. To recap and learn how to do this, I read the Adobe article ‘Use Adobe Photoshop to create a double exposure effect.’ It was really helpful and allowed me to refresh my memory – it also gave me the idea of adding a gradient map to my final image. I decided I wanted to also watch a more in-depth tutorial and came across ‘Double Exposures Effect – Photoshop Tutorial’ by Letsgettoit on Youtube. It was incredibly helpful to be able to see what layers were being selected and the shortcuts being used.

Even though it wasn’t a skill I used in my designs, I really enjoyed learning about how to expose photos beyond the base image on double exposures. This was demonstrated in the Youtube Photoshop tutorial I watched.

I’d really like to learn a faster way of doing everything, whether this is learning shortcuts or different tools that do the same thing, just in a faster fashion. I’d also be interested to learn more about photo blending and the ability to combine photos and blend them together seamlessly while matching the colour and tone.

I’m also curious about how to dodge and burn images – this is something I have absolutely no experience in. I know that the dodge and burn tool are used to lighten or darken areas of an image but apart from this, I have no idea when it would be appropriate to use them and how you would use them.

Additional Resources –
https://www.adobe.com/uk/creativecloud/photography/discover/double-exposure-effect.html

 

Resources for research and inspiration

When we were first given this task, my initial reaction was to look at inspiration on Google and Pinterest. I created a board on Pinterest to highlight my favourite ideas, this mainly consisted of illustration based podcast covers as I struggled to find a variety of photography based covers. The reoccurring themes were bold fonts and graphics illustrations, with images of individual people cut out from their background and instead placed on a colour or pattern background.

On reflection, I definitely should have read articles on how to create a successful podcast cover and then matched my covers to represent my findings. Rather than looking at designs I liked and developing them into my own style and topic.

Since designing my covers, I’ve read the article ‘How to Make Great Podcast Cover Art (aka. Your Podcast Logo)’ by the Podcast Host – this is something I’d have benefit hugely from in my initial planning stages. They talk about how you should keep your artwork simple and as clean as possible as you want your podcast logo to be memorable. My ‘Design in Gaming’ cover definitely reflects the opposite of this, whilst it might have been a good idea for a postcard cover, I suspect viewers would struggle to make out with images within the saluting figure on their phone screens. I also sacrificed a larger title font size for the sake of my image – this again would have probably worked against me as some viewers may struggle with eligibility.

One thing I continually noticed in podcast covers was that san serifs were mainly used as titles – this could be due to san serifs being easier to read than serifs and that they also look better on screen. I made sure I only used san serifs, though I could have experimented more with colour and layout.

My Pinterest Board

Additional Resources –
https://www.thepodcasthost.com/promotion/how-to-create-your-podcast-cover-art/
https://blog.spreaker.com/9-steps-making-great-podcast-cover-art/
https://www.google.com/search?q=podcast+covers&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj72IP9463tAhXAUxUIHeeiCBQQ_AUoAXoECBEQAw&biw=1920&bih=866

Photoshop VS Podcasts

Design ideas and design process

Final Design 1

A collage of portraits to represent a community of listeners as a unity.

The idea behind design one was to create a cover that represented the topic (graphic communication), but also be eye-catching and to stand out. If you go onto Spotify podcasts; as a listener you are met with a sea of different colours, shapes and fonts. Which is why it was important to make sure my podcast covers stood out or drew you in to look at the detail. I believe that this design does this well. The contrast of the colours (especially black and yellow) work well together; whilst also helping the typography to stand out. For this  podcast cover I used Pixabay as my source for my images. I downloaded four different portraits into photoshop, each into their own layer. As this didn’t complicate the final design. I then started working on the cover by taking sections off each image and adding them in one by one, to create this distorted illustration of a face.

Screenshot 2020-10-24 at 20.28.46.png
I wanted to create it to look like I had cut up multiple photos and placed them on top of each other. Once I created my main illustration I decided to add typography to the cover.Screenshot 2020-10-24 at 20.28.23.png
As the podcast was about Typography & Graphic Communication, I felt like the listener should be able to tell this by just looking at the podcast cover art. I used a san-serif font called Futura because it is a modern font as it is easy to read. It is simple and bold and works for the title. I placed the text in a yellow box as I found it contrasted well with the background. Also I used the concept of a box rather then just leaving the text on its on, as then it is easy to read and stands out.
Screenshot 2020-10-24 at 20.28.15.png

 

Final design 2

Each individual listener contributes to becoming a whole

I chose this podcast cover as a final design, as it screams professionalism. I think that it’s important to use photos within a cover as it depicts something that is real, which is what this podcast is about. It isn’t a story; it’s teachings and news within the department. From my research I learnt that for a non-fiction podcast, the cover tends to be photography. Compared to a fiction podcast which tends to be illustrations on the cover.  I really liked this design visually.

I took 3 different portraits and edited them to be black and white.I didn’t want to leave this design as just an image that was black and white. I liked the style of design 1. So I repeated design 1, but in a new manner. I took cuts horizontally to create one portrait from many different snippets of woman. Even though there is no colour, there is depth and tones created from the different snippets. Which is why I believe it is effective.

I then added the typography. The type is large and clear, but not over powering. The photography and type balance well together. I chose to keep the type white as I didn’t want to over power the design with one colour.

Final design 3

A colourful and bold graphical design

This podcast cover screams graphic design to me. I used my own photograph of pouring paint on a skull, then edited it too look more digital and graphical. I used bold colours to stand out.

I feel that this cover will entice you to listen if you want to learn about graphic design. Personally I think it looks cool, and as a listener I would want to learn how to create something like this from an image. It is digital and modern, which is why I believe it works well with the topic.


I have the text layer above the image and down the side so it doesn’t create a too busy look. The contrast of the white text to the bold skull balances each other out creating a visually pleasing cover. For all 3 of my designs I kept to a black background, as it surrounds the images well and creates a nice contrast and unity through all the elements of the design.

Software tutorials

I started by watching the tutorials that were provided, but felt that most of them were aimed for people who were new to Adobe Photoshop, so didn’t feel like I learnt anything new from them. I was confident in my photoshop skills and knowledge before I started this project. Therefore, didn’t find the tutorials useful personally.

I watched a couple of videos on YouTube about photoshop and podcasts. The one I would recommend is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RlVVMXE4Epw . Although I understand photoshop, I haven’t created a podcast cover before. Which is why I watched some YouTube videos on the topic before jumping straight in. I took pointers from this video and considered them when creating my design.

Resources for research and inspiration

I found the sources for inspiration useful as a starting point and from a research point of view. I think it is good to research and look at sources before you start a task. I especially found the pointer to use Pixabay useful, as I never knew this existed. It gave me a more free rein to play with concepts and designs, without having to take my own photographs to depict all my ideas. Additional resources I used were; Spotify, Pinterest and Captive Blog.

I found spotify a good place to start as it is a popular platform for podcasts. Also it contributes to the reason behind why podcast covers are the size they are (so they fit and can be viewed from phones and smaller devices). I found this sources useful as I got access to a wide range of podcasts on all kinds of topics.

Next I used Pinterest, I find Pinterest a useful source in whatever I am doing. It is always a go to source for me. It helps me stimulate ideas and concepts; but also create a mood board of different influences and designs. I have made my board public, if you would like to have a look at it: https://pin.it/1YgLoo6

Lastly I used Captivate Blog. I reed their article on ‘Do’s and Dont’s for creating knock out podcast logos and cover art design’.  I found this source useful as research before I even started my design process. It gave me insightful knowledge on important pointers for designing a successful podcast cover. The link to this blog is below, as I would recommend reading it too before you do a task like this: https://www.captivate.fm/blog/5-dos-and-donts-for-creating-knock-out-podcast-logos-and-cover-art-design/ 

I would further like to experiment and create podcast covers on a different topic. As I believe this will stretch my design skills and understanding on this specific area of design.

podcast covers

My designs and process.

 

I have chosen the photoshop podcast covers, my 1st design for the podcast cover was a simple design, on a plain background I had the name of the podcast cover which was type matters. But after looking at the podcast it looked really simply so I changed the background to a typeface background which I got from pixaby. Then I have used the text twice to give it volume. To develop this further I have changed the colour of the background to a forest colour.

For my 2nd design I have chosen the same idea but this time I have kept the plain background however I have used a pastel green colour and then I have used another picture from the same source of a microphone and then I have added text to the bottom of the cover horizontally.

For my 3rd design I was to create a really simple cover with typography on it, but then after looking at my design I thought it was too simple and I did some research about the Bauhaus and tried to incorporate that into my design. To do that I then added some geometric lines and some circles in black and red however I wanted to add some photography, after added the photography I thought I should take out the lines and put my black and white photography which will look better with the red colour. Then I choose a cream colour background so the text and the photographs would stand out. To add the text, I wanted to add a simple text but after putting it on the photography and circles it was too simple, I thought of making the text in two colours as it would then show white on black and red on white, but I couldn’t do that as I didn’t have enough knowledge about that.so I had to come up with something that would complement the background. I then have put the text in two colours and then stack them together as I didn’t know how I could make the text 3D.

 

design 3

Tutorials I watched for the podcast

To make these podcast covers I have used some tutorials from YouTube of how I can make the outline of the text, to create the outline for the text I was to add the text to the artboard and then I was to click on the layer and use blending positions and then use strokes and put options as outside and then chose how thick I want the stroke.

how change the opacity, to change the opacity I was simply needed to go to the opacity option on top of the layers and then add how much opacity I want. as I am not really good with photoshop, how to change Size of the pictures by going on the top and clicking edits and then using the free transformation to transform the size, and some basic introduction to photoshop videos in which they explained what every tool was all about. Which have explained quite a lot about photoshop.

Some of the videos which were given to us on what each software was and how it was used for different things. These videos really helped me identify which tools to use and how they can help me change the hole look by just one simple thing such as adding the outline to the text or changing the background or changing the opacity.

The additional source which I was using was Pinterest as it really helps me get my thoughts together. As well as ii have used some of my own photography with black and white film around town.

 

Resources and inspirations

I have used Pinterest to get inspirations of how I can make different podcast covers and then looked at google to see what existing podcast covers were like, my biggest inspiration was from Bauhaus as I was doing research about the essay when I looked at some Bauhaus covers which were really fascinating to me and I really liked the way they have used geometric shapes to create such an effective cover as well as the way they build the subject in the centre in a architecture sense is quite interesting. I have looked at some other podcast covers which really helped me to make my mind map of what I wanted my designs to have. after making my 1st designs, I was to develop those designs further so I looked at some Pinterest podcast covers which then helped me decide that my podcast should not look busy it should be simple but effective.

And what fonts I should use, after designing my 3rd design I looked at some more Bauhaus, so I decided to use a traditional font and the design the podcast in modern style. Which I think looks better on the background as its to busy in the centre.

For my 2nd design I was inspired by the Bauhaus posters however I didn’t want it to look like the 3rd design, so I changed the design of it and

I also looked at the podcast covers from our Class which were quite good as well. Which was also an inspiration. And to see what names other people came up with.

I would  like to develop  the 3rd designs in modern designs as the new 2020 deigns which are quite in trend these days.

 

TY1SK Photoshop task

   Design ideas and process

With my first design, I wanted to keep it pretty simple. Considering my lack of experience with photoshop I was still navigating around the software. In the image you can see a girl sat on a laptop and I’ve created a more abstract feel by not including any texts. I actually attempted to edit a few things out of the image to make it more relevant to the message I was trying to convey. I’ve done this by matching the background and overlaying a white box one top and locking this over the image. I’ve also repeated an oval shape, changing the colours of each one to create a ‘Creative Thinking’ concept which is obviously crucial in the Graphic Design world.

Next, I wanted to create something a bit more controversial. Using the basic representatives of Graphic design – A laptop and a phone. I was also really attracted to the pastel blue colours. I’ve laid some white boxes on the top of the devices because there were some graphs I didn’t want to be shown as they were not relevant to the task. I’ve used the text tool to put ‘Typography&Graphic Design Communication’ making sure the space of the words looked correct. I used the eyedropper tool to match the colours of the text with the colours of the background that I liked so much.

Along my research of inspiration, I came across this calligram image of Martin luther king. I was drawn to the bright contrast of colours against the black and this is something I have tried to reflect in my own design with the bold, bright white writing that definitely contrasts with the background. I experimented again with the type tool and moving around the text to make it seem appropriate on the page. I’ve used a bold, san-serif type in white to create a clear contrast of colours similar to the main image.

My original image.
My original image.
My original image.
Experimenting with different typefaces, sizes and colours.
creating a box and filling with a colour to alter the image to make it more relevant to my own work. Experimenting with colours.
Creating a selection and filling this is to match the background and getting rid of any relevant information – making it my own for a more personal message.

Software tutorial

I have decided to log about my photoshop task because photoshop is where I least excel in, so I wanted to challenge myself more in this area. I have been briefly introduced to photoshop but other than a few short tasks I am pretty clueless as to the uses of the software. I was eager to learn how to use photoshop, as I am very aware it is a huge aspect of the creative industries I want to strive in. 

Software tutorials were an extremely important part of my process with my lack of experience with the software – I know from experience with other Adobe softwares that the never-ending tutorials on the internet are very important and actually a way of key learning for most creatives. I needed to start from the very beginning and decided to watch a video just showing some navigation of the interface. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LN37eDqYvfQ. There’s also some little videos as you hover over the interface which I found very helpful along the way. Some of the skills I learned on my journey include placing the images in the interface, experimenting with the type tool and similarly experimenting with the different typefaces. I also used the eye dropper tool to do some colour matching. I feel like I’m pretty familiar with photoshop now and will feel more comfortable in future photoshop tasks.

When considering some of the skills I wanted to develop further, I’d like to experiment with overlaying and merging images – maybe through the use of cutting out and placing on top or even experimenting with different transparencies et cetera. I’m very interested in this photo editing side of photoshop and it’s something i’ve been meaning to experiment with for a while and will definitely be taking this with me after this project.

 

Resources for inspiration 

I started my research of inspiration by looking at a website called Picabay mainly for inspiration but also this is where I was going to source my main images. I started by researching some key words like ‘Typography’ and ‘Design’. I was finding myself drawn to calligram-like images. I’ve always been inspired by David Carlson and his grunge typography style. I definitely wanted to include something like this. I was drawn to one Calligram in particular of Martin Luther King. I loved the true contrast of bright colours on the black, but also the message that we resonate with Martin Luther King is ever important. Although some might feel he is irrelevant to the topic of Graphic Design, if I was to have a podcast I would be including content that resonates with the morals of Martin Luther King and likewise the celebration of other black artists.Similarly, I seemed to gravitate to more colourful images which is evident in the final images I picked with paste blues and elements of pink but I also managed to keep it quite simple. I did some similar inspiration research looking up keywords on the internet (similarly websites like etsy and pinterest) and found this pretty helpful when i was in times of a creative block.

 

Getting to know Photoshop & designing podcast covers

Design ideas & design process

Our task for this project was to design and create three different podcast covers for a Typography and Graphic Communication podcast using Adobe Photoshop. Having never used photoshop before, this was a great opportunity for me to familiarise myself with the software and get to know the basic tools. Our podcast covers were to be a combination of image and text, but we were free to be completely creative with our ideas. My initial idea was to a create a tree from individual letters, to represent the importance of typography in everyday life and to give an indication to the general topics of the podcast. I found an image of a tree that i liked and placed it into photoshop before adding lots of individual letters to the shape of the tree. This took time but i then learnt how to duplicate things which made it a lot easier. I also cut out an image of a sun and added this in to the image, because i wanted to experiment cutting up and adding images. During the process of the second design, I learnt about cutting images and using layers to show different parts which allowed me to replace the tea with coloured liquid by initially cutting out the shape of the normal tea splash. I wanted to use a fairly normal image and to add a creative spark to it with the watercolour splash, and had seen similar designs like this previously which is where my inspiration came from. For the third design, my idea was to have the text merging into the image as if it were a reflection. I changed the format of the text so it appeared as if it was on the floor by adjusting the angle, following the reflection of the yellow door. I also used the dodge tool to lighten the colours of the door. My first design idea was my favourite, so I developed this more by warping the podcast title text so that it appeared as part of the sky.

My first podcast cover design idea – tree
My second podcast cover design idea – tea
My third podcast cover design idea – yellow door
Demonstration of how I learnt to work with different layers in order to manipulate an image
Using tools to warp and distort the text
using the dodge tool to lighten areas
Showing how i used an image and built on it using layers
Distorting the text to make it fit into the sky
using the blur tool to soften the edges

 


Software tutorials

To begin with, I watched Rachel’s video first which showed me how to set up and create a new file in photoshop, place images into the file and combine them, as well as demonstrating how layers work. This was useful in understanding the basics of photoshop and how it works. There were certain keyboard shortcuts that I took in from the video such as “Command T” to transform images which was really helpful as it simplified the learning process. When I had further queries about what tool to use i would search up what I needed on google or watch some different tutorials which really helped. I watched the video thread titled ‘Get to know photoshop’ which contained clips about opening images, saving work, and generally getting to know the work space area. I then watched the adobe tutorial on working with layers, which was really helpful in understanding how they work and why they should be used. I found the youtube channel Adobe Creative cloud useful for general tutorials on getting started and using photoshop. I also used Terry White’s youtube video tutorials on photoshop. This was helpful as i didn’t know what each of the photoshop tools did before so I learnt the uses of some of the important ones such as the cropping tool. Another adobe tutorial i found useful was the one about working with and combining images.

https://helpx.adobe.com/uk/photoshop/how-to/combining-images-basics.html?playlist=/services/playlist.helpx/products:SG_PHOTOSHOP_1_1/learn-path:get-started/set-header:ccx-designer/playlist:ccl-get-started-2/en_GB.json&ref=helpx.adobe.com


Resources for research and inspiration

I wanted to get some general podcast cover inspiration, so I went to Spotify and had a browse through different podcasts, paying close attention to the details of the image provided to get a feel for what i should include in my image. I asked myself what each image was trying to say and if it interested me, then why? I found that most of the covers incorporated bright colours to catch the eye of the viewer, and the name of the podcast was usually embedded into the image. I then used the free image site pixabey, in order to search for free, high quality images that I could use in my designs. For my first design I started searching for photos of trees made out of letters, but there were none that I particularly liked or were what i was imagining in my head, so I changed my mind and browsed images of just trees, thinking that I could create the lettering effect myself. For inspiration, I looked at Matthew Price’s article ‘How to design a podcast cover: the ultimate guide’ which gave me lots of helpful information and tips on the design process, and here i got to see lots of examples to learn from. For a further introduction into Photoshop and for future inspiration, I looked at the step by step tutorial on How Amr Elshamy created “Round things”. This was really fascinating as you get to see the amazing finished product and are walked through the different stages of the process as well as the tools used.

https://helpx.adobe.com/uk/photoshop/how-to/use-polar-coordinates-filter.html?playlist=/services/playlist.helpx/products:SG_PHOTOSHOP_1_1/learn-path:key-techniques/playlist:topic/set-header:get-inspired/en_GB.json&ref=helpx.adobe.com

Podcast Photoshop Task- Hannah Ferguson

Design Ideas and Design Process

For the podcast Photoshop task, I began by choosing a title. I wanted a catchy phrase that was related to typography and decided on ‘Talking Type Tuesday’. The alliteration worked well and it meant that it was clear which day the podcast was on.

For idea 1, I had not used Photoshop before so I began with a simple design to experiment with. I used different typefaces to reflect on the typography theme and experimented with the ellipse tool and layers to make the design more interesting. Although this design was not my favourite, I felt that it was a good base to start from and allowed me to get to grips with Photoshop.

Podcast Idea 1

For Idea 2, I wanted to include an image so I decided on a typewriter as it played on the word ‘type’. I imported it from Google and then experimented with the quick selection tool. This allowed me to remove the background and isolate the image. I then chose a muted background colour and added some type onto the typewriter to show the title.

Podcast Idea 2

For Idea 3, I felt much more confident using Photoshop so combined the techniques I had learnt to make this. I found an image of a graphic mouth on Google and styled it using the quick selection tool. I was going to leave it just with the image but then felt that different letters coming out of the moth in varying typefaces would work effectively. I then positioned the title as if it looked like sound waves being spoken. I particularly liked how the letters coming out of the mouth turned out as it linked clearly with the theme as well as being very visually exciting. This was my favourite idea as I felt it worked very effectively and liked the boldness of the colours.

Podcast Idea 3

To experiment with my covers, I had originally not put a circle in idea 1 as I had decided to just use text. However, I felt that I could advance this and experiment with more tools in photoshop, such as a shape tool.

Experimentation of Idea 1

For design 2, I experimented putting the text at the bottom, top, and on the typewriter paper. However, I found that it looked much effective on the paper itself.

Experimentation of Idea 2

For design 3, I experimented with the background colour to see what one which worked the best. After testing with light blue, pink and purple, I decided that purple worked the most effective in providing a strong contrast with the image.

Experimentation of Idea 3- Blue
Experimentation of Idea 3- Pink

Software Tutorials

Having never used Photoshop before, I found tutorial videos to be most important. I watched the video provided to us which gave an outline of how to make the podcast cover. This showed me how to easily add an image into Photoshop and then how to export it to save it as a web file for my trello board. Alongside this, I watched the Adobe tutorials on getting to know Photoshop and how to use layers. This was especially helpful in my first idea as the layering allowed the ellipse tool to cover some of writing by the use of layers. As I needed to use the quick selection tool often, there was a tutorial in the Photoshop programme that I used, however I would like to advance my skills on this as I found it difficult to isolate the exact image. Although I have not yet mastered it, I found that this tool helped me the most when creating idea 2 and 3.

To aid me in my designing, I watched many YouTube videos on Photoshop tutorials and how to replicate text, such as I did in my third idea. I also looked at websites for an overview of how to make a podcast cover – https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/how-to-create-podcast-cover-photoshop/ which provided a step by step thinking process to follow and reminded me to choose a theme and direction before I started. It also provided an introduction into filling shapes with colour which proved useful in my first design of the circle in the background.

In the future, I would like to explore with the other tools in Photoshop that relate to editing an image such as how to adjust the image quality and using other tools such as the blur and dodge tool.

Resources for Research and Inspiration

As I often listen to podcasts, I went onto my Spotify to have a look at the general layout of other working podcast covers. I discovered that typography and typefaces were a prominent feature and decorative, colourful fonts were often present. An image was also almost always present whether this was in the form of a photograph or as an illustration. I also looked at Typography podcasts that were available on Spotify to take some inspiration from. I found that these largely had a theme of an exciting title via the fonts. This gave me a good starting point and I used similar typefaces to create my first idea, looking at the typography podcast covers and taking inspiration from their simplicity.

Screenshot of Spotfiy podcasts
Screenshot of Spotify typographic podcasts

I wanted to include an image in at least one of my covers so I researched objects and themes related to typography on Google. The typewriter came up quite often as a symbol of modern advances in type and felt this would be fitting for a cover. Looking at a modern pop art style perspective for my third and favourite idea, I took inspiration from a website that was provided to us-

https://99designs.co.uk/blog/design-other/how-to-design-a-podcast-cover-the-ultimate-guide/. It made me think to portray my personality within my design as I prefer bold, loud, captivating designs which is why I was especially drawn to this one. It also inspired me to next time create my own illustration for the cover. This is a topic I would like to develop further in order to create my own podcast cover with an illustration that I had drawn, possibly using another programme such as Illustrator then developing it in Photoshop.

 

 

Creating Dymanic Images in Photoshop

The task we were given was to create a podcast cover in photoshop so here is how I created mine.

 

 

Design Process

 

Designing a podcast cover, the first thing to do when designing a product is to examine existing products of a similar nature and look at what works and what doesn’t. I had a look at other podcast covers and found that those with emphasis on imagery were the most effective, this is because the covers themselves are seen at a very small size when displayed for mobile and text isn’t generally visible unless at a large scale. A common thing is the use of a simple image containing the person holding the podcast, this however only works when the person is famous or at least well known in their particular field of work. I really like this technique and wanted to employ it in my own work. Seen as this was a task for a fictional podcast I used some portraits taken by British Vogue to represent the people hosting the podcast.

For the first idea I used the magic erase toll to remove the background of my portrait. Then creating a path using the pen tool I was able to separate different parts of the subject and appear as though you could see inside her skull, my original idea was to have some roses growing out but when I did this I found that it didn’t relate enough to the brief and the idea of typography wasn’t clear enough. Therefore I went with something simple and uses the word type repeatedly in the shape. For the second design I used a similar concept as my first design but wanted to explore textures, I therefore used layers and overlays to get these effects. The third design took a more minimalistic approach, I used the pen tool here and then erase the background from the image of the pen, I really liked how clean this design looked however seen as this task was to explore photoshop skills I felt that my first design used the most interesting techniques.

 

Software Tutorials

The task stated that we had to create these covers using photoshop. I have used it before but not for a long time so I decided to look into some visual artists and seek inspiration from their work. One of my favourite poster designers is Magdiel Lopez, he has done collaborations in the past with adobe and I followed his tutorials in order to create the effects seen in my covers. I watched a series of videos of him creating some posters and looked at not only how he creates his effects but also why he uses them and how to create more appealing visual pieces. The cut seen on my portrait in design 1 is something he uses a lot to add depth to an image, it also helps to convey meaning. He also loves to use a gradient and using his tutorials I was able to add these to individual shapes in an effective manner.

I was going to include flowers in the cut of her face as mentioned earlier but I struggled to make it look realistic, in the future I feel that improving my understanding of shadows will help me to create this effect and produce seamless professional looking work. These tutorials helped to develop my skills with the pen tool and layering options also adding gradients and the use of colour palettes. The skills that I want to progress are my ability to tie to two images together to create unnatural effects without it looking pasted together, I can achieve this by adding shading to an image and getting more practice with light sources. Another thing I would like to improve is my backgrounds, at the moment they are relatively simply however I would like to create more complex images allowing my work to have a greater impact.

This was my attempt at having flowers grow from the cross section

This is the link to the tutorials I used-

 

Resources for Research

I myself don’t listen to podcasts so for this task I had to do some research into existing podcast covers and their design trends. As I mentioned earlier I found that a large proportion of them had portraits as the central focus generally containing the host of the podcast and I created my pieces to fit this trend. However in terms of the actual designs took inspiration from a lot of other sources.

I really liked covers which uses simple portraits or had a person as the focal point of the design. I think its very personal and has a human side to it, also its nice to put a face to a voice. Having an influential person hosting your podcast would generally be the main selling point and it should therefore be appropriately advertised.
I absolutely love these covers and think they have an incredible sense of impact. The bold colour choices really draws your eye and the use of gradients adds a certain level of professionalism to the work, it gives the piece another layer of depth. What really like here is the 3D effect these images have I think its more dynamic than a normal image and helps to keep attention, this is what inspired me to look at texture within my work by giving it more features you can create a more interesting piece. One issue with this is that you do run the risk of having an over complicated design and it looking like an eyesore, this is something I had to balance when creating my covers.
Magdiel Lopez is where I drew the inspiration for my first design, he creates incredibly dynamic work that uses bold colours to capture attention, he also has a love of gradients. I used the cut head technique and some gradients in my work in order to show his influence on my images. In the future I want to look at add images or objects in the cross section instead of just text.

Design Discussed: My Adobe debut

Design ideas and design process:

Podcast cover 1

For my Photoshop debut, I wanted to start with a simple but eye-catching design that would attract my self-appointed target demographic of people under 25. I experimented with the effect that overlapping colours and opacity and it resulted in a blended watercolour effect. For the text I used opposing featured colours to add harmony to the division.

Podcast cover 2

I created a more experimental background for my second design with the use of a textured paper background with a more colourful layer overlapping it. The layer on top has been blended so that the images seem merged. I used a pen graphic and created a silhouette with colour overlay- to emphasise the title I added the bevel and emboss effect.

Podcast cover 3

For my favourite design, I aimed for an image without text that still clearly showed the brief. I created the platform for the centrepiece by collaging paper graphics. The centrepiece began as a radio microphone that I manipulated with layer masking to replace with a pencil head and emphasise that design is being discussed. Finer details involved more layer masking to give the effect that the microphone soundwaves were bursting out of the cover despite the layer being placed behind the collage (the stand isn’t fully visible). The background is red as that is often related to news, with a gradient to make it less harsh.

Software tutorials:

The tutorials that were suggested/found primarily aided me with layer masking and text effects. My inexperience meant I did not seek particularly experimental techniques as my primary goals were to learn and refine the basics. The Adobe site contains more concise tutorials than what I could find on LinkedIn Learning, which contained more detailed introductions.

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.