Wednesday, 3 April 2013


Using a combination of photoshop and illustrator I began to design my publication. I decided to work on illustrator mainly as it allows for double sided printing, and as I wasn't in need of printing a booklet it made it easier whilst setting up rulers across multiple pages. Using art boards allowed me to move design elements around easily and freely, being able to see multiple pages at once.

Each art board was set up at A4 Portrait, and each had a 3mm bleed. The files were set up as CMYK, as the publication is for print.

The initial background images and text boxes were positioned across the pages, allowing room for images, type and details to enhance the aesthetics of the Publication.

The colour of images was changed throughout the publication to either suit a trend, theme or to enhance the aesthetics of the page. This was carried out on Illustrator using the following:

By altering the percentages for CMYK the colour of the image will change respectively. 

The Time Out magazine cover above was originally black and white, however due to overlaying the image with an 80s inspired print on photoshop, the image took new form. 

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Further Development:

Once I was happy with the layout and imagery, body copy and additional text/details were added where necessary. Occasionally layouts had to be changed slightly to accommodate body copy, and some images were reduced in opacity.

Photoshop was used throughout the design process to manipulate and cut out images, as seen above (black and white photo). The 'hand drawn' pen lines were drawn with a pen tool in illustrator. Stroke and width were altered where necessary.

The same principles for development were used throughout the publication.

Body Copy:

American Gigolo, directed by Paul Schrader, is arguably noted for two things, it’s protagonist, and what he wears. With a wardrobe designed by Armani, an upcoming high-end fashion designer at the time, it needed to make an impression upon its viewers.

At the beginning of the 1980s, it was Italian designers who led a revolution when it came to tailoring; removing the shoulder pads out of men’s suits, and adding them into women’s. Originally his garments were designed to accentuate the masculine build, but following suit of fellow designer Daniel Hechter in the mid-70s, he changed his direction of aesthetic and cut.

Components once seen on males tailoring, was now being seen on women’s clothes alike. Oversize blousons, shoulder pads and heavy pleating became the essential comparative power suit.

Silhouette and structure were built around the body, and with fabrics being available in a variety of textile and colour choices, it was the ‘in’ trend for a savvy businessman. Seen as a luxury brand, Giorgio Armani basked in the glory received from the film, and the fashion. A simple class had been born.

Armani dominate American Gigolo in the best on screen product placement and advertising ever received. Every line was shown within the 2-hour movie; formal, semi-formal, casual, daytime, evening, leisurewear, underwear and accessories.

The brand image was said to be a creation that came from film, and that is essentially what the viewer is watching; an Armani collection coming to life, blossoming, disguised in the context of sartorial fashion choices defining the lifestyle given to the character.

Armani were not selling a lifestyle choice with this film; he was selling a look. Even though this may be narcissistic, the dominance, yet laid-back image exude sex appeal, promoting the line to both sexes.

1980 was a big year for Barbie, with the release of the first Black and Hispanic Barbie Dolls. In 1981, an Oriental Barbie was released due to the previous success of the previous editions.

The first African American Barbie doll came dressed in a red business dress. She was said to resemble Felicia Rashad.

Prior to this Barbie dolls were designed as stereotypical white dolls, with changeable accessories, clothes and pre-defined facial features.

Bringing out different races of dolls never seemed important prior to the 1980s, however the success stemmed this range into its own right. Racism has been an issue globally, especially in America in the early 20th century, whilst decreasing into the latter of the decade; equality was reached, thanks to protesters,  fellow designers such as Katharine Hamnett, hard work and festivals such as Rock Against Racism.  

Since World War I, there have been mixed views on the topic of racism. It is said evidence exists, portraying politicians and public figures to of condemned all forms of racism, but then ironically been accused of pandering to racist attitudes through the media.

In the 1970s, far-right political parties such as the British National Front stood with passion and expression, as a “racial nationalist, whites only political party” Deemed as “fascist and neo-fascist” due to it’s strategic policies. Due to the policies in hand, the British prison and police services are forbidden to be a member or supporter of the group, and this continues to present day.

A controversy and uproar would arise and protest against the British National Front, due to the noted reintroduction of Section 28, and the support given to the re-criminalization of homosexuality, along with repealing the 1967 Abortion Act, claiming abortion is a “crime against humanity”

However a decade later, the party rapidly declined throughout the 1980s with Margret Thatcher as Prime Minister of the UK, and leader of the Conservative party. Racism has always been a problem, and to some extent is still a problem today. However after the grim 1970s, society aspired to be more optimistic and with changes being made for the greater good of the country, racism slowly faded into the background, and was no longer a main topic of conversation.

Races were mixing at work more with equal rights and opportunities for women. Fashion peaked throughout the 1980s and fought back against racist claims by introducing black models for fashion photography and catwalk shows.

Throughout the 1980s Michael Jackson bleached his skin to appear whiter in complexion, being obsessed with his image. An icon in his own right, he stood proud against whether he was “Black or White” and released a number 1 hit with the same title a few years later.

Through fashion, media and publishing racism began to be forgotten about, and the fashion industry passionately showed how each individual is beautiful; regardless of skin colour.

Following films such as Fame fashion trends were heavily influenced by the character on screen, for example, Irene Cara’s character Coco Hernandez became noted in the industry for leggings, sweaters, oversized t-shirts and off the shoulder tops. 

This came around at a time also when aerobics and gym wear were being reintroduced through fashion magazines such as Vogue, showing style, passion and taste.

Leotards, bodysuits and jumpsuits became popular throughout the 80s, popularized through fitness aerobics, but worn under a skirt or shorts for a fashionable, nighttime twist.