Graham Rawle

Just had a very interesting lecture with Graham Rawle, an illustrator/designer.

Here is some things that I learned...

  • All designers are storytellers

  • Trust your intuition

  • When telling a story you need to find the right order of words for it to sound right, it needs to have a good rhythm to be more catchy and so it rolls of the tongue easier.

  • A story needs drama, it needs to go up and down, up and down to make it more interesting. For example, when playing snakes and ladders, with out the ups and downs you just have a boring game board. A roller coaster is the same you have to go up and down to have fun and for it to work, like the plot of a story, it has to build up and then go back down and then build to another plot. You also need to know when a story is going to end so that you are not disappointed by a sudden ending, it has to lead up to it.

  • What you don't see or say is the most important part in a story. The audience then becomes involved in the making of the story, they have to join the gap together and fill in the missing parts, a bit like juxtaposed images, our brain automatically builds a connection between these two things and makes links. The bigger the gap, the more you have to input yourself.

  • As a reader, you have to do a lot of work. There is a coding system in the text and our mind is left to put pictures to words. People don't like to mess around with the structure of a book, because it gets in the way of our mind and thought process.

  • It is important to not overlook the edge of simplicity!

  • Nothing is ever wasted! - Graham Rawle created a book called a woman's world. In the time he spent making it, a year was spent building models, cars and buildings to create a pictured story, he then decided it wasn't going to work and he needed a new approach. He left this idea and thought of a new way or telling the story, which was cut out pieces of text from womans magazines. This is a very important part of design, to go on a process and to sometimes realise that an idea may need changing after it is well thought out even if it looks good. It has to work and do the job well.

  • Don't keep compromising. You don't want it to look like everyone else's work so don't settle for a different technique, paper stock or whatever else. Go elsewhere and find what you want, do it yourself. You must get it right.

  • You need to control as much as you can! Writers don't often get to control their own stories, they don't get a say in the design of the cover, the typeface used, the peperstock or the colours, and this can change the way someone feels about the story and the way they interpret it. 

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