Chuk Moran

Research & Design

Visual Design for Participatory Art Festival

In addition to being a founder and producer of the Something Else festival of participatory art, I also did a fair amount of early design work to support the project. Here, I present on visual design process, reasoning, and outputs.

Our goal was to spread the word about a dinosaur themed arts and craft focused Labor Day weekend party. We needed all the basics: banner, slogans, website, and newsletter.

  • Role: Graphic Design, CNC Router, & Code
  • Client: Something Else
  • Tools: Sketch, HTML/CSS, Google Sites
  • Duration: 6 months
  • Year: 2018-2019

Original map
The venue already had a simple map. However, our team felt it was too cartoony and childish, lacking much fun or imagination. Also, we did not have access to the original asset (just a flat image) so would need to rebuild it to make any changes at all.
2018 event map
I put together this map in Sketch to accomplish very practical ends (hide or indicate prohibited areas, foreground our central and peripheral sites) and to add a fun dinosaur flavor to match the theme and mood of the event.
Back of the map, 2018
The map only needs a single side of a piece of paper, so we had a very good communication channel for participants at the three-day event. Here, I borrowed information from the original map and added quite a bit more to help particpants and reinforce our most essential rules and guidelines.
New map for 2019
The 2018 map project brought the issue of a better map to the attention of the venue, who then contracted with one my fellow producers who has a background in graphic design and a love of maps. I was happy to play a minor role as she put together this much more precise map, which featured some stylistic elements from my 2018 version.
Sketches for original website
We explored squarespace and other providers, but ultimately decided that a fellow lead and I could handle things much more precisely if we built from scratch with html/css. This initial sketches show the basic pages and features we were looking for. This concept survived rather well across all iterations!
Original website 3d layers
To add intrigue to a basically pamphlet-style website, I used css 3d layer groups to get a reliable and simple parallax effect. The banner flaunts one of our top features: the lake! The site scrolls in a list of event essentials in a higher parallax layer, which moves faster. At the bottom we included a simple google form to collect leads.
2019 Google site
Our 2019 page. Coding the 2018 page from scratch was great when everyone involved could write code. However, as the team, we picked up collaborators who were not ready to do that. At the same time, a PDF document (a glorified FAQ) was in need of editing but was authored all in Pages, which new collaborators didn't feel comfortable using. I rebuilt the website as a Google site and we migrated the PDF content into a page on the google site. This made it much, much easier to edit and let us delegate this work moving forward.
Newsletter banner
I developed a number of other necessary assets including this cute banner for our newsletter, to justify its title and add a sense of whimsy.