Intersection Project

This was a project assigned to me for my Design Studio class at CMU which required me to observe and make compositions out of card stock to create a road intersection.

I first observed my intersection and took pictures from different angles and perspectives. I noted things that stood out to me and characteristics of this specific intersection. I came to the conclusion that this intersection was unique in the way that it so highly prioritized pedestrians over vehicles. The picture that I needed was something that showed the high amount of foot traffic that goes through this intersection.

After selecting this as my image, I moved on to creating my white composition. I began by cutting the tree and building line since they are the furthest back in the image. This proved to be more difficult than I had anticipated though, since there were so many small details in the trees. This difficulty only increased as I cut the images in the foreground, especially with the people and the light posts.

Originally, I had planned on incorporating all of the people, but due to how difficult it is to cut the shape of them when they are so small I only used a couple pedestrians. I attempted a few of the smaller people, but I was unable to cut enough detail to show their actual shape.

The grayscale composition was similar in many ways to working on the white relief, but also very different. They both were the same concept of cutting and layering card stock in order to create a scene, but the grayscale took much more planning in order to figure out which shades of gray to use where. In order to make this planning easier and organize myself better I drew out a map for my colors before cutting any paper.

I then did the color version of my relief. I continued my goal of trying to emphasize the people in the intersection by choosing to make the pedestrians the part of my intersection with color.

I learned a lot from this project, the most obvious being the development of my fine hand movements needed to make small cuts. But I also learned a lot about composition and looking at my own work as well as others with a designers eye to find places where they could be improved. I also learned about the fine balance between portraying enough detail to distinguish a shape, but not so much that it becomes too busy.

I think the time that I spent observing and taking pictures of my intersection taught me the most though. I learned how to decipher the most important details and observations about a place and then communicate those details through a picture. I then learned how to choose the best picture that encompasses the essence of my intersection.