Friday Design Fun 5!

Happy Friday, dear readers! I hope you are having a lovely week and have a fun weekend planned. I can hardly believe we are almost to the end of another month. The holiday season will be upon us before we know it. I for one am not ready for that, but I am ready for sharing some design fun with you today. So let’s talk about designing timelines on a tight timeline (ha!) and other bits of design knowledge and fun.

This past weekend was alumni weekend at the university and since it coincided with the 60th anniversary of the founding of the university (and the library and archives had put together an exhibit celebrating our history), I was up in the library on Saturday giving tours and showcasing materials from the archives.

Since I can never pass up a chance to promote the library and archives, especially when it means I can design something for an event, I made a brochure to highlight the exhibit and share ways of learning more about the archives. As we were celebrating the university’s history, I thought a timeline would be a great thing to include in a brochure. With time being scarce–isn’t it always?–I knew I would have to design something simple that would still be visually appealing. So instead of creating a very complicated timeline, with lots of different parts, I created a very simple one with some years highlighted that corresponded to photographs we had digitized from our collections. The result is below:

timeline showing the 60 years of history of Cal State East Bay showing years and photographs of buildings built or dedicated in each year

Alternating years and photographs gives some visual motion to the timeline and not trying to cram every single highlight gives it breathing room. I used dates and photos that corresponded to the body text of the brochure so that it would be a coherent whole. And, although the photographs are of different sizes, I made sure to keep the same baseline (or “top line” for those photos on the bottom of the timeline) to give the timeline a more polished look.

I can happily say that a number of alumni came to the library’s open house and on the tours and liked the brochures. Because, really, who doesn’t love historical photos of their alma mater? And, with not a lot of time and a few key graphic design techniques, I was able to ensure that the archives put its best visual foot forward, too.

With the academic year in full swing, I’m on the lookout for things to keep me inspired as the increase in meetings and fires to put out everyday can zap my energy. So I was excited to see this good article from Smashing Magazine, Stop Designing for Only 85% of Users: Nailing Accessibility in Design. Good tips and great resources. Every design should be accessible. And since fall always makes me want to travel, I had to share this icon set of 60 travel icons.

Plus, simply because these are lovely: Amazing pop-up books, a funny take on graphic designers redesigning state borders from xkcd,  and mini chocolate chip cookie pumpkin cheesecakes from Joy the Baker. Yay for autumnal baking!

I hope you are finding time to create wonderful art and designs. I hope your weekend is full of relaxation, good friends, and good reads. I’ll be back with more news and notes soon. Allons-y!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *