This project was centered around the self-exploration of culture and composition building. We were asked to pick a single word that summed up our culture. I chose the word "growth" because my culture has always been deeply rooted in nature. 
Typographic Exploration
One of the first tasks in building a complex composition was a typographic exploration. Using the letterforms within our chosen word, we had to create a composition that explored relationships between typographic forms while focusing on positive/negative space, and contrast of shape. My first composition was geometric and had little to no overlapping relationships between letterforms. 
After some small group critique, I created the second composition. I chose to use a script font to utilize letterforms that have a more organic shape. I also completely abstracted the letterforms to create a composition that focused on movement and flow. 
Pattern and Color Exploration
The next part of our composition building was to experiment with developing pattern. This was the first time I had created my own pattern. My goal was to create a pattern that was interesting and unique to my message. I chose to create a honeycomb pattern that was made up of six units. Each unit was made up of curved lines, meant to represent tree trunks. There were six units within the pattern to represent each of the six people in my immediate family. 
Once done completing the pattern I created two colored variations. The three colors I originally chose were representative of myself and my two siblings. The orange represented my younger brother, the pink represented my sister, and the green represented myself. 
When creating the second colored pattern, I chose to darken the pattern completely to create more contrast between each of my patterns. 
Hero Image: 1st Draft
Once completed with the typographic and pattern exploration, it was time to combine both exercises to create this Hero Image. One of the things that I struggled with the most when designing was creating contrast. I used scale  to create more contrast because up until this point in my pattern-building, the only contrast I had to work with was color. Unfortunately, as I manipulated scale within my composition, I began to lose the pattern-ness of my pattern. I increased the scale so much that there was not enough repetition within my compositional elements for the viewer to recognize the pattern. 
Photographic Exploration
Based off of my analasis of culture, I photographed images that reflected the main themes of "growth". A large focus for me as I was photographing was the small details often overlooked in nature. For me, growth is something that happens slowly over-time. Every little detail changes and grows every day, just as we do as humans. Capturing the small changes of growth was one of my goals. 
Re-Evaluation of Color
Once I had taken my photos, I realized that they were made up of much warmer hues than I had anticipated. Because of this, the original colored patterns I created no longer had the intended interaction with the photographs that I had anticipated. I created a cohesive color palette based off of the images I captured and applied those colors to my patterns. 
Final Hero Image
This was the final Hero Image that I designed. The final product combined my exploration of typography, pattern, color, and photography. One of my favorite parts of the compositions was my use of color. The only place I chose to use a red hue was with the photograph of the strawberries. This control of color, combined with the framing in my abstract typographic composition, allowed for a strong central focal point to be created. 
Throughout the course of this project, I learned that my culture has always been deeply rooted in nature. I have formed a connection to the green things of the earth, and these feelings have translated to a deep love of gardening to spend time with my family. Every summer growing up, we would have huge family reunions in Northern Minnesota. During this time, we would go strawberry picking together and spend time on the lake, completely immersed in nature. My culture adds to the mosaic of Seattle’s culture through the green movement. There has been a huge movement to give back to the earth in recent years and that is something that resonates with my soul.  

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