Utopia Island – Ddraig Knievel Design and Development of Book Design and Logo Animation

Inspiration for Utopia Book Design

Having been riding a motorcycle (m/c) since I was 11 years old, it inspired me to create an island for ‘bikers only’, as the biker lifestyle is about being free to ride wherever you want, a life of adventure.  The name Ddraig is Welsh for Dragon and the name Knievel comes from the stunt man Evel Knievel who was famous for his wild stunts on motorcycles, he lived a life of adventure and was a real dare devil.

The island’s culture reflects my time spent at home in Wales and the West Country, my travels around the world and my year living at Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia at the heart of the beach and surf lifestyle.

Collating photographic images of motorcycles for over 3 years, I enjoyed creating this island from having stored up many images of motorcycles for some time.  It was really fun to actually put my knowledge to use.

The images below are from my sketch book, which is the book design development.

Title Page of Sketch Book


Thumb Nail Design of Book Layout

Book Design CYMK colours used are Warm Red, Black Neutral and Gold.  Restricting the design to three colours gives a theme throughout and a professional look.

Typography Balboa Primary Plus Page Numbers and Headings, excluding ‘Way of Life’ heading as I designed myself.  American Typewriter 10pt, body text and captions.


Slideshow of Utopia Map Development

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Final Design in Book


Logo Research and Development

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Final Logo Design on Book Cover


Logo Animation

Logo designed in Illustrator, saved as a vector.  Animated in After Effects creating two layers, one the helmet and the other the lines so the lines can flash on and off.  Placing recording pointing every second with a percentage of 0% for off and 100% for on to make the lines appear flashing.  Using the playhead to test the design.  Rendered, saved and uploaded to YouTube to view. The animation is simple to reflect the design period of 1950’s.

Manifesto Design Research and Development; and Book Design

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Final Manifesto Design in Book

Way of life heading designed as above in slideshow.  The body text for the manifesto is American Typewriter 10pt.  This is to give a retro look to the design.










Researching Patterns to use on book design

Used the first wood pattern with a geometric design as it’s contemporary and the wood gives a bike shed/surf shack look.


Book Design – Page Research and Development

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Final Page Design


Book Design – Page Research and Development

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Final Page Design


Book Design – Research


Final Page Design


Book Design – Research and Development

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Final Page Design


Protest Poster – Research and Development

Poster designed on A2 screen printing with 4 layers – Black, Red, Blue and Yellow.

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Final Page Design – with Protest Poster, photographed


Book Design – Research and Development

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Final Page Design


Book Design – Research and Development

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Final Page Design

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Designing title page and back page with links

To balance the book design, the front and rear pages have been designed with the same images.


Final Page Design for title page and rear page with links


Link to Book on Issuu



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Rene Magritte, The Betrayal of Images 1928-29

“the aspects of things that are out important for us are hidden because of their simplicity and familiarity” Rene Magritte

Rene Magritte produced this painting which is represented as it’s seen as a pipe or an image of a pipe. Using Saussure’s model for a sign, the sign is the pipe, the signifier is what gives it meaning using the words and the image as it’s denoted and the signified is what is evoked in the mind to give a mental concept, the connotation.

Using words written on post-it notes to stick on objects as a signifier to give meaning, through the use of words and image like Magritte’s image above.  Further to this, inserted headlines for that day from the tabloid newspapers.  Choosing Helvetica as it is a neutral design that is compatible with most content and will not distract the viewer from the image. Depending on the image, I used Helvetica in lower case and upper case to give contextual meaning to add drama or relaxation/playfulness to the image.

What We Have Learned in the Last Year 23.09.16

Taking inspiration from Stefan Sagmeister’s book – Things I Have Learned in My Life So Far (2008) and focussing our design on what we have learned in the last year at university.  Veronica and I reviewed Stefan Sagmeister’s work and talks then collaborated our ideas to come up an image, which visually communicates our message in digital dissemination.

Above : Browse through Stefan Sagmeister’s book – Things I Have Learned in My Life So Far (2008) : Source YouTube

Our inspiration came from Sagmeister’s body art and his use of typography in various concepts.

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Above : AIGA lecture poster by Stefan Sagmeister.  Sagmeister had the words carved into his skin to visualise and emphasis the pain that accompanies each of his design projects.

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Above: Images taken from Stefan Sagmeister’s book – Things I Have Learned in My Life So Far (2008).

Our concept developed from the above images, amongst others in his book, but we particular enjoyed his use of body art and nature to communicate his messages, so we explored this.

At university this year we learned that working together as mixed genders in a team helped us deliver the results we wanted, as we stayed focussed on our goals, but we had a lot of fun along the way.

In our concept we placed our forearms side by side, bonding our arms together with the use of typography running over both our forearms, with the words ‘focus and fun gets the job done’.  For the typeface we used Lobster as it’s quite a fun typeface and we wanted to use a typeface that joins up in a script, which depicts a tattoo in the skin.  We wrote the words on our arms, but later digitally enhancing them in Photoshop as we wanted to, like Sagmesiter, emphasis the pain we have gone through this year to achieve our results, as tattoos are quite painful.  Painting our nails in pink and blue to depict the mixed gender teamwork.  Finally, wanting to add some nature to the background of the image to give it more visual impact, but also to further communicate a message.  Living in an urban city can be stressful and almost like a jungle, trying to get ahead and achieve your goals can be a challenge, so we depicted this in the background image with plants and flowers (a jungle) to highlight our daily struggle around what we have learnt.


Above : ‘What We Have Learned in the Last Year’  

The above image has been hosted on Instagram under username carr13_w