Production Diary (Week 10)

This week we finished working on our dossiers by adding all our pages together and then making sure that the interactivity and navigation between pages worked correctly.

We encountered many problems when we first combined our pages. One of these problems was at first the buttons we set up would not go to the correct page, for example our home buttons would not go to our dossiers home page instead they went to the first page of their section of the dossier. We figured out that this problem was being caused by the fact that when we added our dossier sections into the same InDesign document the pages were placed in separate columns, and were all numbered the same. We managed to fix the numbering problem by just changing the numbers from which the columns started counting from, but we couldn’t figure out how to merge the pages into the same column. Eventually we discovered how to do it and then all the buttons worked correctly.

Another problem we had was we didn’t have a proper home page. We were just using our content page for that which meant when other people tried using our dossier they didn’t know what they were looking at. To solve this we had to decide what we wanted our home page to look like and we settled on it being the front of a folder with a stamp on it that told people what the dossier was for. This led to another problem as we had to figure out how to make a stamp in Photoshop. We made the stamp by first finding a symbol on the internet that we could use as our logo. We also made sure that it was an image that we were allowed to use. Then in Photoshop we created a circle and then cut out the center piece so that we were left with the outline. Then we edited the symbol we found so that it was red, the colour we wanted our stamp to be. Then we added the text we wanted and finally we used the brush tool to create splatters across the stamp, and also used the blur tool on parts of the stamp to make it look realistic.

I’m pleased with our finished dossier as the content we created for it such as audio logs and 3D objects all look really good and the overall dossier does look like something from the intended time period. Also the interactive elements we have all work with no problems. However one thing we could have done better is make our audio logs stop playing when we change page, because the way we have it set up is the audio logs keep playing unless you tap them to pause them, even if you start another audio log, which is not good. We could have fixed that problem by re adding our audio through the Media tab on Indesign instead of through Overlays, but because of the problems we had trying to synchronize all our pages we did not have the time to fix this issue.


Production Diary (Week 9)

This week I finished my dossier pages and edited my audio log that I recorded last week.

To finish my pages I finalised the layouts and started to add the information to them. I also added buttons that members of my team had made to the pages so that they had a consistent element, and also the arrows they made fit more with the style of the time period.
First page Second Page Third page Last page

I also created the content page for our dossier that will be used as the home page and will allow users to get to all of our sections.

When editing my audio log I was trying to make it sound like it was being played through a phonograph as that was the technology used at the time for recording audio. To do this I added Brownian noise to my audio log to create static and I also adjusted the equalisation of the audio make it have a slightly higher pitch as that is what audio played through a phonograph sounded like.

I’m happy with my dossier pages as I think they include relevant information and present it in a way that is simple for the audience. I also think I have made it look like its from the 1800’s with the textures and fonts I have used, as well as the assets that my team mates and I have created, such as the back and forward buttons, the arrows, and the wax seal, as these things all look like items you would expect to see during the time period.

I think the audio log I recorded and edited sounds like its being played from a phonograph, which fits in with the audio of the time period, however I think I could improve its authenticity by having other sounds, such as a sound imitating the cranking of the handle for when audio is being recorded on a phonograph.



Production Skills (Week 4)

In week 4 of our production skills we performed the scripts that we worked on in week 3. This involved voice acting and having to learn our scripts so that we could speak confidently and not make any mistakes. One of the problems I had when doing this task was my script needed to be spoken by a French person so I had to try and do a French accent. I think the accent I did was alright so it wasn’t too much of a problem. I also recorded another persons script so I had to make sure the levels on the recording device were set up correctly so that it would capture their performance in good quality.

In 3DS Max we started to create a generator from the time period of Age of Napoleon is set. We did this working from a reference image to give us an idea of what a generator from that time looked like. This task taught me how to bend shapes so that I can create different objects and how to work from a reference to try and recreate something.

We also designed possible page layouts for our dossiers in our design teams which we would then give to another group so that they could create the pages in Indesign. For this we drew sketches of our design ideas and had to write what text font we wanted and what colour and size we wanted it to be. I annotated my design so that whoever had to create it would know exactly what I wanted on the page and they could create it without having to ask too many questions. This has taught me how to effectively communicate my ideas through a brief and communicate my ideas through drawings.

In Indesign we did work on global navigation and learnt how to add videos. The global navigation work we did was adding a home button to our pages that worked the same way on all of the pages. We did this by creating an A master page and creating the home button on that page so that it would be applied to the other pages. To add a video we went into the Overlay section and selected the video overlay and then imported the video we wanted. This will be useful when we are making our final dossier pages as we will need a home button that users can use easily and we may want to include videos on some of our pages.

I think that the generator I started creating in 3DS Max was good as it did look like a generator from that time and the effects I added to it such as a chamfer and bevel worked well. I think it could be improved as the grooves going over the top of the curve do not look as good as they could.

When we were doing the task involving page layouts I though that I communicated what I wanted well through drawings and annotations and think that whoever was creating that page would know how I want it to look.




Production Skills (Week 2)

In week two of our production we learnt many useful skills that will help us in tasks such as designing our dossier and modelling for our dossier.

One of the tasks we did was to design an interactive web/app version of the story of little red riding hood in our interactive design teams. For this we had to think about how people would interact with it and come up with designs showing our ideas in a simple way. We also had to think about what the webpage or app would actually look like and how we would layout all the elements to it. This task taught us skills related to interactive design and graphic design and will be useful for our project when we our designing our interactive dossier. The problems I encountered were trying to think of ideas for the graphical design of it as it was meant to be for children so I had to think how I could make it look simple and appeal to children. I overcame this problem by talking with my teammates and taking on board some of their ideas to develop my own.

We also did some wireframing work in our interactive design groups where we had to design layouts for a double page spread on are triple a games too big? Because our topic was about more than one specific game we had to use a design that was neutral and not use a design similar to just one game. I could apply these wireframing skills to my project as I will have to design my dossier and wireframing different design ideas will help me plan the dossier and help me choose the best design.

After we had done wireframing we started using Indesign to create the designs digitally. Doing this enabled us to learn a bit about the tools available to use in Indesign. I can apply these skills to my project as I can use Indesign to create different designs for my dossier and will be able to see if my designs will work. The problems I encountered during this task were I had never used Indesign before and that was the case with a lot of people in the class so we couldn’t really help each other much so we just had to learn by experimenting with the different tools. Doing this meant that it took me a while to start actually designing but once I had learnt a few of the basic tools I was able to use the program.

3D modelling
The 3D task that we did this week was to model an object that might be found in the Age of Napoleon game. There were many steps we had to take before we could start modelling though, these were: research; making thumbnails; modelling; and finally texturing. I chose t model a storage chest. The research task involved making a mood board showing examples of chests that I could use as reference and textures that I could apply to my chest. After doing the research I had to draw thumbnails showing different designs for the chest ad showing it from different angles to show what the chest could look like once it is finished. Finally I had to create the chest in 3DS Max and then texture it. The whole point of this task was to make us go the phase f pre-production instead of just going straight into the production. This will help me in the project I am doing at the moment and my final major project as I will need to do research for both and come up with different designs before I actually start making the final product.