My name is Ben College and I am a senior, student-athlete at Whitworth University. I am majoring in art with a focus in graphic design.
Posters helped to act as an introduction to graphic design for me. When I was younger, my walls were plastered with posters of NBA players, hip hop artists and rock stars. As I grew older I realized that I was interested in the composition of the poster, just as much as the figures that were depicted. My interest in the composition of these posters increased and eventually led to my curiosity in graphic design.
The goal of the Bodoni poster was to dive into a classic typeface and learn about its origin and style. Researching the Bodoni typeface brought to light the importance of typography within graphic design. Typography is a crucial tool of graphic design and can be used in a variety of ways. The best typographers are able to combine principles of readability and creativity in order to create intriguing designs using type. This poster also taught me about some of the technical parts of typography. Bodoni is a typeface that is known for its unique, stunning serifs and its elegant contrast between thick and thin strokes.
The goal of the Pulp Fiction poster was to create an event poster of a play, movie or performance. This poster features an illustrative style that I began to adopt in the summer of 2019. As I was searching for an identity within graphic design, I chose this style that allowed me to combine my creativity with my passion for illustration. Combining a modern illustrative style with a classic movie was the primary challenge with this project. I used warm colors and a slab serif title to help tie the vintage movie to my modern illustrations.
The Tory Lanez Map is a concert poster for Tory’s 2017 tour across America featuring his newest album: Memories Don’t Die. I continued to explore my illustrative style in the production of this poster. I was challenged to combine my illustrations with a mapping concept. This project continued to push me as a designer because it required information to be conveyed through an aesthetic that aligns with the artist. I achieved this by connecting Tory Lanez to the map using warm colors and similar linear strokes.
Home Is Where the Hole Is challenged me to incorporate my design work into an installation piece. The hole in the wall represents an action of anger and aggression. This project represents overcoming anger and turning something angry into a piece about friendship and comradery using light-hearted illustration. I used to struggle with controlling negative emotions, however, I have overcome emotional issues through perseverance and dedication to bettering myself. This installation is also a representation of overcoming struggles with frustration and anger.
Summer Ball was one of my favorite books as a young teen and I wanted to use my vector design to put together a teen-friendly book cover. I combined warm colors and a summer camp atmosphere in order to create a cover that would align with the title: Summer Ball. The book is about an undersized basketball player (Danny Walker) who attends a basketball camp with the country’s top players. Throughout the camp Danny is faced with high levels of competition and a variety of conflicts. I used the basketball to represent the sun and included vector trees and mountains in the background to bring out the summer camp atmosphere. Furthermore, the large basketball hovering over the horizon is representative of Danny learning to overcome hardship.
The Things They Carried is one of my all-time favorite books. This book is packed full of short stories that chronicle the events encountered by soldiers in the Vietnam War. These characters are used to describe some of what Tim O’Brien encountered when he was in the war. This book gives a glimpse into the hardships of being a soldier. I tried to exemplify this through the cover of the book by giving the viewer a “sneak-peak” through the silhouette of the soldier’s head which acts as a lens through which we view the Vietnam War.
This design is dedicated to a late friend and teammate Deante Strickland. Some of my fondest memories with Deante were playing basketball all over the Portland area. Whether it was working out in the muggy SEI gym or playing a high school game at Central Catholic, Tae was always running circles around defenders. The silhouette depicts Deante’s number “11” emerging out of the Portland skyline. I created one of my light-hearted illustrations of Deante to represent his laid-back character and contagious smile. I also included the quote by Martin Luther King Jr to represent the perseverance that Deante displayed throughout his life. He persevered through people that doubted his short stature, his attitude and his dedication to academics. After two years of junior college ball Deante played for two years at Portland State before graduating. He was planning to go back to school to earn a masters and play a season of football at Portland State before he passed.
J. Bloome is a mock floral event and décor company. I used my illustration style to create a logo that people will associate with the company. My greatest challenge was to combine simplicity with uniqueness. I tried to accomplish this by using soft lines and a limited color palette. I used a limited color palette with the peach and cream. I used splashes of green to make the brand more dimensional. Color is important to this design, however it can also be displayed in black and white without losing the association to the company.