Putting It Together. The Collages

I drew inspiration form the work of Stuart Bradford. At first it was slightly daunting as to the reasoning behind the elements he chose in his compositions.

His archived work at http://www.theispot.com shed some light on this. Accompanying each piece of work is category, subject and style information. This gave me a good starting point of how to approach this.

I started by listing emotions, events and how I could possibly represent them. This is one of the more intelligible pages. I tend to scribble anywhere and everywhere!

Then started to flesh these out a little to arrive at slightly more comprehensive ideas  for layouts

Rather than present the techniques used, which were just a matter of blend modes, masks, multiple layers etc.; nothing that hasn’t been presented before. I will state my reasoning behind certain elements used in the collage.

4. The Death of Mark Duggan

Reading my source article of choice I picked out elements I could depict.

Here. Start with a picture of Mark Duggan. Information led the authorities to believe he was in possession of a fire-arm. Which led to invention by an armed response unit. On this occasion it led to fatal consequences. The cuffs form the shape of a cross., to bring attention to information that came into the public domain later as to whether the shooting was justified. Other elements provided a bit of grit and grunge. I think the shapes speak for themselves

5. How Blackberry playead a key role

I recall at the time of the riot a news article mentioning the message used in the image above. I remember being astounded that to see a rallying to cause such disorder and mayhem. The technology obviously played a key role in the viral like spread of disturbances.

The lines denote this mass spread. Here, they lead to and from a communications hub in the centre, which in turn leads to other handsets.  The social network emblems are shown in much darker tones representing their misuse in this affair. The printed circuit board texture again makes reference to the role technology played during this time.. The defacement in the form of scratches represents the chaos and total disregard for property and peoples livelihood.

6. Looting

In the bottom left we start out wtih the red clenched fist denoted anger. This represents the concerns of the those particapting in the original march. The 102 in the placard represents the number of participants.

The falling placard and down arrow symbolises how quickly this fell away giving rise to something else

On the right we have this huge hand reaching over ( the very poor! graphic symbol of ) London. It’s wide open demonstrating avarice; hence taking everything it can. Depicted here we see money and jewellery falling into it at the expense of London.

Other aspects showing these human, and community costs are the grid texture (representing damaged  shutters) and the smashed glass effect. Also footprints expressing the disregard for what has been trampled on.

Two positive side effects.

  1. The hand ended looking a bit like stone. At the time I changed the levels to move away from this slightly. Looking at it now I don’t mind because stone is cold, hard so only serves to show the lack of feeling and heartlessness.
  2. The 103 and the up arrow represent the 1000s participating in these disturbances, Due to its placement the whole design began to look like a note of currency. That wasn’t originally intended but as this the article deals with the issue of greed I felt it was fitting.

Putting it Together


I drew inspiration for the cover from this WWII propaganda poster. I guess the intention was  to instil fear, discomfort, unease. In my case I wasn’t going so much for fear, but did want to unsettle the reader, at least remind them of the rabid mindset of people participating in the riot.

The image below  was my starting point available here.

Nothing of note here other that applying Posterize filter, and masking out a section of the image to seat the text.

2. Photo

This is the starting point for the image on pages 3 and 4. When I first saw this at the time of the riot, it was moment of disbelief. Living in North London, and walking up and down this street countless  times, both day and night I found this all so surreal. I found myself thinking

This isn’t something I experience or expect to hear about so close to me. This is something that happens on TV in other parts of the world!

That gave me the Idea to use the picture in that manner, with the horizontal line flicker, and reduced colour palette reminiscent of images of disturbance I see all to often on the News.

The Film Grain Effect tutorial and halftone filter combined to give the desired effect

3. Timeline

zamecznik, wojciech Warsaw 1959

Another poster appearing in my source book. I never had the time to attempt it whilst digesting techniques, but felt If I took ideas from it It would work well, as it seemed edgy. Also  I could reuse the numbers as dates.

Basic Concept

Title : Summer of Discontent

A series of imagery to support various articles covering the UK riots of 2011

My intention is to produce a pamphlet / booklet containing articles covering the events of the 2011 UK riots. The source of the articles will probably come from news sites. My goal is to produce imagery to support these articles. As such it wont follow a continuos story format with a defined beginning, middle, and ending; rather a selection of articles which in my mind cover certain issues which were raised surrounding the event.

I guess this can be classified under editorial graphics, as the approach taken attempts to visually represent some aspects of the each article.The main influences are

Both of them have produced illustrations for books, articles, journals etc. Leibowitz is the predecessor, and judging by the similarity in style I wouldn’t be surprised if his work influenced Bradfords approach.

A secondary influence was the work of various poster designs I came across whilst researching possible techniques, and approaches to the final project.

Targeted at an adult / young adult audience my aim is to draw attention to the events and succinctly present some of the factors which sparked, fuelled such, and led to such unfortunate outbursts

To produce the booklet will require drawing upon techniques gained throughout the course and more specifically a range of techniques gained during the research phase of this project. Primary software used will be Photoshop, Illustrator and Indesign

Where applicable I will rough out ideas on paper to give me some direction, but due to the collage nature of some the intended work it will more likely be by feel rather than by design.

I dont want the images to fully stand apart from the article in a typical text – picture – text – picture scenario. That would seem to formula. I would like them to mingle in some way.

The Final work will be a .pdf file available on the blog.