When creating logos and indents there are certain ways that designers implement meanings and associations. For example if a company asked for something which created a feeling of power then a Lion maybe be used as this is seen as a sign of power. In this post I will discuss this and explain why and how meaning is attached to certain things/objects. This can be described in terms of “Signifiers”  and “Signified”.


‘we think only in signs’ (Peirce 1931-58, 2.302).


  • a ‘signifier’  – the form which the sign takes; for example a word, the word “open” being displayed on a shop door.
  • the ‘signified’ – the concept it represents. Here the word “open” signifies that the shop is open for business.

A perfect example of this would be public toilets, a sign has been developed that is known throughout the world to not only show that the room is a toilet but also the gender for which the toilet is for. This sign however would not work without the context, it is because that this sign is being displayed on a door that people have this association.



This is often used to show complex notions such as emotions and ideas, for example the idea of love can be shown using the sign of a “love heart”



Equally this sign can be altered to show a different concept, below we can see that by “breaking” the heart this can represent the complex idea of being “heartbroken” .



Often people have different meanings/ideas of what is being “signified”, this is because our meanings are created often from our experiences and not built into us, for example different cultures have different “signifiers” for things and often what is signified in one culture may be something entirely different in another.

For example, in my culture the image below (thumbs up) signifies a message of approval of positiveness, however in Thailand it’s a sign of condemnation.



Similarly in some Asian countries beckoning by curling your index finger is a gesture only to be used for dogs and to use it with a person would be derogatory; suggesting that you see them as a subservient inferior.


Many western cultures make this gesture when wishing for good luck. A hand with the index and middle fingers crossed is even the logo for the UK’s National Lottery. In Vietnam, however, this is an obscene gesture, especially when done while looking at or addressing another person. The crossed fingers are said to resemble female genitals.





Below are numerous examples of many very famous company logos from the entertainment industry.







Most of the logos used in the entertainment industry have several variations, because film, games, animations are all moving image this allows the companies to have both static logos (found on letterheads, merchandise etc) and animated logos (which proceed the film/game/animated title sequence). I have found through research that most of these companies that have both static and animated logos will just use variations of the same logo, this is to maintain the strong brand identity. With these logos being for the entertainment industry they should be functional for that genre, for example in the animated film logos often these logos will entertain the audience, the Pixar logo being a prime example. This logo uses a animated anthropomorphic lamp as the letter “i” , this is particularly effective as it shows the audience exactly what the company does (bringing a life objects/people in an animated form). Anyone knowing the history of the company will also know that this lamp is from the animation where they first established 3D animation and thus harks back to the companies strong history.

Other logos that I particularly like from the film industry are the “20th Century Fox” and the “Walt Disney” logo, The reason I like the Walt Disney logo is that it has remained continuous throughout time, it is an evolution on what was the original logo but has just been updated throughout time. The castle in the logo depicts the magical and childlike nature of many of the films. As technology has improved so new elements have been added to the logo, like stars and fairy dust.

The reason that I particularly like the “20th Century Fox” is that it hints at the origins of film as entertainment, with spotlights being used, in the past these would have been used to light actors/stars on stage etc. These lights are also used to show something important and thus define the company as important within the industry. The type is also in the form of a massive, solid monolithic style building, once again showing its importance and impressiveness.


Like with film company logos, the logos of the games industry have evolved with technology. The original logos where limited mainly by what could be shown on the games systems. The original logos where built around the 8bit systems so where simple typeface with simple backgrounds, these “original” companies like with film have just evolved with time, taking advantage of the most recent games systems capabilities. Below we can see a brief time line of how the logo of Nintendo has evolved, the main point being that once 3D had been developed in the systems then this was incorporated and emphasized in the logos.

nintendo-logo Nintendo_64_Logo gamecube_logo (250 x 171) nintendo-logo1


Sony developed the Playstation years into the console race and so their logo started off with elements highlighting the systems 3D capabilities. Below you can see a brief history of the logos evolution.

Notice that as the technology of the systems have advanced so have the logos, the logos are then used to showcase the systems technology.


I think that many of these logos would have been extensively developed on paper, with sketches and storyboards etc before they were developed digitally. Some of the texts would have also been created by hand and then recreated in the digital platform.

Most of these companies would have invested a lot of time and money in the creation of these logos. In most cases numerous experts would have been hired.  They would have been given a brief with things like company colours and certain things that need to be included, like for example, in Disney the castle would have needed to be included as it is synonymous with the brand. Then the designer would have shown numerous concepts until the ideas had been exhausted, at this point one or more ideas would have been chosen and further until a end design was created.






Re my previous post regarding wanting to practice my Photoshop skills, I had 2 “The Walking Dead” Portraits that I had drawn several months ago, I decided to digitally colour these as well,  below are the before and after pictures. (apologies about the darkness of the digital versions, my laptop at home is much brighter and they looked okay, upon uploading them at Uni I realised they are incredibly dark, I will sort that and re-upload them).



Governor - final MAC daryl - final MAC






A few months ago, I purchased some copic markers, I draw the following picture of War Machine


Over the weekend I wanted to practice on Photoshop and so I revisited this picture and wanted to colour it, I decided that I was going to colour it as Iron Man, I then digitally removed the weapons on the shoulders and had to “create” a new shoulder on the right hand side. This gave me the picture below:Image

I then worked on a background and wanted to add something to the foreground to pull the picture together, I ended up with the picture below:


I am quite happy with it considering i have very little experience on photoshop.




Below is the final piece for an project that I have been working on. below this I have also include some of the development drawings and also the original digital renderings before they were placed into the final piece.

food vendor final2 MAC


Below are most of the sketches I did throughout the development process, I brainstormed a load of ideas and then sketched numerous objects that could be used for seating, eating etc. I also sketched a few ideas for the layout for the final piece.

ideas 2

Below was an idea I had for the animatic.

IDEAS 3 ideas

food vendor food vendor2



Below is a sketch for how the engine could be used to fry food.

frying pan idea

Here salt and pepper pots are used to mark places on a map.

map idea storyboard frame idea - knive map ideas


Below is an attempted sketch of an engine, I will add a frying pan later.



engine jeep back jeep frony map on table


Below are digital renderings of the sketches that I want to become part of the final piece. Below is the engine complete with frying pan and fried egg.

engine color done jeep back coloured jeep done mapnew

ammo crate

on table



A quick animatic i created, i will redo a much improved version.

PRINCIPLES OF ANIMATION – Exaggeration & Timing



Timing is the number of drawings that make up the action,  this translates as the timing of the action. For example if a ball was bouncing and was made up of 6 frames, this would be twice as fast as the ball bouncing in 12 frames. This helps create the illusion that objects and characters apply to the law of physics. This also allows you to create the illusion of weight to an object, for example a balloon would float slowly and have many frames, contrasting with a bowling ball which would be the opposite.

You can see below the frames for a bouncing ball, more frames are used as the ball reaches its highest point, showing that like in real life the balls movements would slow at this point before descending down and gaining speed again (using less frames).

09_timing-and-spacing-richard williams

Timing is also very important in terms of establishing a characters mood, emotions and reactions.


Exaggeration is an effect especially useful for animators, often a realistic recreation of real life can be static and dull, adding exaggeration can make this a lot more interesting.  The level of exaggeration depends on the style the animation,  The classical definition of exaggeration, employed by Disney, was to remain true to reality, just presenting it in a wilder, more extreme form.








Here is a quick animation test that I made demonstrating the principle.