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Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby Sain » November 2nd, 2014, 9:54 pm

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apowers wrote:Thanks guys!

The past two weeks we have been doing some soft goods sketches and man am I having a tough time!

We had a sub come in from Samsung and he really didn't like how much marker I was putting down on the page. Definitely something I've always struggled with.


Maker looks good, but I can see why we would say that. In the sketch phase, marker is just meant to add a bit of attention to an area. Like to show material if its important to the concept ( glossy vs matte areas etc). Or call out a touch point.

Your going full on render with the markers, which is OK, but prob not appropriate at the level on ideation your suppose to be delivering at.
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Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby apowers » November 3rd, 2014, 3:57 am


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Thanks Emmanuel, I definitely agree. With the way things are changing it seems like marker 'renderings' are a lot of calories spent that could be used in a more photo realistic way via CAD or other digital tools. In this case I think what really messed me up was that I wanted to show material colors rather than more grey marker value studies.

I was just going through your chair thread last night, I really enjoy the way you present your work!

Thanks for your time!
Aaron Powers
Footwear Designer at Nike
Academy of Art University Graduate - 2016
My design school journey: viewtopic.php?f=27&t=28022
My Behance: https://www.behance.net/Apowers
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Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby yo » November 3rd, 2014, 9:23 am

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I think for softgoods I typically out a lot more market down and more in a matte style. You are rendering a soft material. Think about creating form more by doing solid fills of color and then darks and lights ontop of that. Also Ty to simulate texture, putting a piece of textured fabric under your sketch and rub the side of a white or back pencil over top. Take a look at the fabric parts of the shoe sketch I posted today.

Good luck and don't worry about your sub :-)

Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby Sain » November 3rd, 2014, 4:05 pm

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apowers wrote:I was just going through your chair thread last night, I really enjoy the way you present your work!


Thanks, but you just reminded me that I re hosted my website, so i need to go back an relink all those photos tonight. :|
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Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby IDAL » November 3rd, 2014, 4:06 pm

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yo wrote:Also Ty to simulate texture, putting a piece of textured fabric under your sketch and rub the side of a white or back pencil over top. Take a look at the fabric parts of the shoe sketch I posted today.


That's a great tip yo, first time I hear it. I have to try that!
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Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby apowers » November 9th, 2014, 4:40 pm


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Here's some sketches from this week.

I really wanted to improve my marker technique this week and experiment with colors, style, and line weight. I think they are still a bit over-rendered, and my peers/instructor didn't like the use of color again.

I also wanted to dive further than just grey marker sketches and see if I could communicate different materials through reflections in forms and smart use of value. I don't think I succeeded in very many sketches but I can definitely see where I need to improve.

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Aaron Powers
Footwear Designer at Nike
Academy of Art University Graduate - 2016
My design school journey: viewtopic.php?f=27&t=28022
My Behance: https://www.behance.net/Apowers
IG: Sketchpowers

Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby yo » November 9th, 2014, 8:21 pm

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Strong showing. I think these are really getting there. Keep pushing, and keep experimenting.
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Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby apowers » November 10th, 2014, 10:50 pm


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Thanks Michael,

I suggested this week that we get into some real thinking and designing even though it's a drawing class. So we are doing 3 categories with a full range of sketches from ideation/thinking thumbnails to some refined line sketches and some final drawings. We can choose any topic, hoping to have some more interesting stuff to look at soon!
Aaron Powers
Footwear Designer at Nike
Academy of Art University Graduate - 2016
My design school journey: viewtopic.php?f=27&t=28022
My Behance: https://www.behance.net/Apowers
IG: Sketchpowers

Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby yo » November 10th, 2014, 11:40 pm

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Cool. Remember to find your own style. I tend to do a lot of more solid market fills and then work back in with white chalk and white pencil. It works for me. Observe others, experiment, and assimilate what you feel works for you.

Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby apowers » November 16th, 2014, 10:32 pm


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Thanks Michael, I definitely need to develop a style.

I'm reworking all the projects in my portfolio at the moment so here's some sketches, I really enjoy dancing from really rough sketches to nicer drawings.

Revisiting the marching band shoe. I wasn't happy with the final aesthetics and think there is room to make the project much more finished:

Current state:
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Some quick graphic explorations:

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Also revisiting my trans 1 concept to fit in with my product design 2 shopping project for Amazon: Will post a thread on this project soon

Current state:

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Proportion change, and integration of cargo units for shopping:


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And lastly a drum pedal sketch that people really enjoyed in my drawing class:

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Aaron Powers
Footwear Designer at Nike
Academy of Art University Graduate - 2016
My design school journey: viewtopic.php?f=27&t=28022
My Behance: https://www.behance.net/Apowers
IG: Sketchpowers

Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby yo » November 16th, 2014, 11:43 pm

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That is the thing, none of us are ever happy with what we have done. Everything I post I feel the same way about... you are doing the right thing by revisiting those old projects. Your new marching band sketches are so much better and probably took you 1/4 of the time. It shows how much you have learned.

Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby apowers » February 14th, 2015, 8:57 pm


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Here's some stuff from winter break:

I really wanted to find some quick sketch techniques that found the balance between marker rendering and just linework... Some sketches are from reference.

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And here's some studies in digital from my digital sketching class:

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and a quick 40 minute exercise from sketch to digital

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Aaron Powers
Footwear Designer at Nike
Academy of Art University Graduate - 2016
My design school journey: viewtopic.php?f=27&t=28022
My Behance: https://www.behance.net/Apowers
IG: Sketchpowers

Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby yo » February 15th, 2015, 10:25 am

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Great sketch exploration. We need to solve this cropping issue.

Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby bngi » February 15th, 2015, 10:52 am

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Hey Aaron, have you taken a step back in the thread to see how far youv'e come along? If not, you should!
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Re: Apowers' Design School Journey

Postby yo » February 15th, 2015, 1:56 pm

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agreed. Huge steps.

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