This week, we learned how to analyze our target audience and brainstormed as a class for this purpose. Topics suited for 5-7 Y/Os, topics suited for 9-11 Y/Os, and those that would apply to both. Events, toys, film & TV, we ensured that many areas were covered. Additionally, there was a small lecture on typography – font differences and origins.
We spent the majority of this week’s lesson analyzing child interests as a class, using our past hobbies as a catalyst for discussion. I did not participate as much as everyone else due to my own personal upbringing – I grew up on material that would have been suited for 16 and older crowds. This was an educational experience for me, as it broadens the selection of topics and subjects I have at my disposal.
Afterward, we were tasked with transferring our brainstorming into a visual format. Spider diagrams and moodboards appeared to be popular. However, I branched out and chose to do a flowchart. This was for two reasons. One, I am more familiar with flowchart structure. Two, this would also be research into online flowchart creators for when I begin developing text adventures, as they are essential to the planning stage.
Below is the flowchart.
For my first use of the online program ‘draw io’, it was incredibly easy to pick up. Creating shapes – rectangles, circles, triangles, rounded or not, etc – and anchoring them to arrow paths. These come in many different styles, but I chose the most basic to get myself used to the program.
I believe I was successful. However, there are a few points I would change for next time. The structure could use some work – perhaps a more vertical layout instead of something that so clearly looks like it was restricted to a box? Additionally, perhaps different uses of colours and fonts? Finally, there was a lack of brainstorming on the 9-11 Y/O audience compared to the 5-7 Y/O audience and this can be traced back to the class discussion.
Lastly, before finishing the lesson, we were given a short glimpse at typography and why it matters. Here we were introduced to several popular fonts and how they differ.
Calligraphic is a cursive font based on old calligraphy – the art of letters, put simply. While the origins are incredibly old, it is still being used today as a common, handwritten-style font.
Blackletter – or also known as ‘Old English’ – was one of the first widespread and easy-to-use fonts, gaining popularity because the font’s descendant, Carolingian Minuscule, was too labor-intensive and time-consuming to use for mass-produced books. Blackletter was, thus, introduced. However, it is rarely used today.
The difference between serif and sans-serif are in the strokes and their namesake – the ‘serifs’. Simply put, serifs are curves along the points and ends of letters. Serif uses thick and thin strokes with serifs – for some letters, this looks like ‘hands and feet’. Sans-serif has no serifs whatsoever, and every stroke has an even width, giving a far cleaner and more office-oriented style.
Other such fonts include script (pure handwriting, different from calligraphic), helvetica and a plethora of decorative styles. The latter of which can be fonts made in Photoshop with floral, geometric or other such designs.