Monday, 22 October 2012

Who am I?

My name is Nigel Kitts; I recently received my BA (Hons) in Digital Animation from Falmouth College University.

I specialised in 3D modelling at university, but I've got a pretty extensive background of traditional art (Well, as extensive an art background as you can have at the age of 23) so I've labelled myself a "Digital Artist" rather than a modeller or animator, and I'm currently seeing how far that will get me.

I've got a lot of other interests including - videogames, music, cake... you know all the regular nerd stuff. But since this isn't MySpace (Remember MySpace?), I guess I'll leave all the other stuff out until I've got something to actually say about it.

Oh and my star sign is hahaha, just kidding!
That's about all for now!

Nightgear logo

The online retailer Nightgear recently (August, I think) held a competition on their Facebook page to design a sewn patch they could use to promote themselves, and to my surprise, they picked mine! Well not really to my surprise, because I'm obviously so great at everything, but I'm trying to be humble here, give me a break. Jeez.

Anyway, I just thought I'd share some of my thought processes and philosophy on the design.

My original design

Animals give a design more personality than something abstract, and many animals represent certain things to people. That's why a lot of institutions choose an animal as a mascot. Since the company uses a military theme for their business and this was a competition to design a military style patch it seemed like a good idea to run with.

"But Nigel, why did you pick an owl when other animals like eagles and wolves are so much cooler?" said nobody.

"Shut up, owls are way cooler than those slacker animals!" I replied.

For a start, Nightgear is a UK retailer so I thought it would be fitting to choose an animal that's part of the British ecosystem. Yes we do have eagles, but the eagle is a symbol of imperial conquest and you don't necessarily want that subliminal connotation attached to your company and I think the last time we had wolves in Britain we were still writing in Celtic runes. Besides all that, owls are symbolic of wisdom, so using one as your image says "Hey, check it out, we know what we're doing."
I tried out a few other animals but they gave results that were dangerously similar to the Bat symbol or the Foxhound logo.

If you're wondering why the owl is carrying a tonfa or 'night stick' it's because I wanted make the image a bit more interesting while representing something related to the company's market.
As far as I know, Nightgear doesn't actually sell any kind of weapons, so there's a slight innacuracy there, but it does look a bit like a branch, or something an owl could actually land on, pick up and carry, and it's similar enough to police equipment to be on-theme.

I'm currently working on a version with a bit more detail, which would be better suited to web or print, since this one is designed with stitching in mind.

update: so it turns out we wolves in Britain way longer than I thought, and the particular owl I based the image on isn't native to the islands... but lets keep that between us, who's gonna know, eh? :)