I work at the George Mason University School of Law as a web services developer. I am responsible for everything that has to do with the web from visual design to front-end development to Linux administration. I also do freelance web design, but schoolwork has kept me too busy. I have tons of projects in my portfolio, but for the sake of time, I’ll focus on some of the works I have done in classes.
For my graduate course on Brand Identity Design, I created my dream record company called Vietjazz. The goal was to produce and promote Vietnamese music with jazz flavor. An example would be to take a melodic Vietnamese ballad as a basic structure and improvise on it using jazz arrangement. The target audience is for Vietnamese listeners like myself who also love jazz.
We spent a significant amount of time on working and revising the logo. I came up with more than a hundred designs and ended up with this. The logo consists of eight vertical bars. The slight tilting and offsetting of each bar conveys dynamics. All the bars are in blue expect for the green accent on the letter “j” to signify syncopation. The logo is set in one of my favorite typefaces: Univers by Adrian Frutiger.
The final assignment was my favorite project. We had to come up with the brand guide. While all of my classmates chose to do a book format, I chose to do it as a web site. My reason was that a web site is always available. In addition, if the big boss wants to make some changes to the brand, you don’t have to reprint the guide. You can download all of the brand assets right away. I also love all the details that go into the guide.
I learn a great deal in that class and Jake is the man. If you haven’t taken his class, I highly recommend it.
For my previous seminar with Shanshan, we focused on storytelling. For the first project, the assignment was to use data to tell a story. I did a poster on color blindness. Accessibility is one of the things that I care deeply about web design. I want to make sure that web sites are accessible to everyone. Whether you have visual impairment or color blindness, you should be able to access the web and that’s the beauty of the web.
“Somewhere In America” was a fun project. The assignment was to tell a story based on literary piece. I picked Jay Z’s “Somewhere In America” because on the outer layer it’s a pop record, but Jay Z packed so much references underneath the lyrics. For example, the line about “Somewhere in America, Miley Cyrus is still twerkin’” has a racism reference in it. Hip-hop is inseparable because kids are living in it without knowing it.
Unitea is a fictitious tea company I developed for the final project. The goal was to build a brand with a unique story. The concept behind Unitea is the playoff on the word “unity.” When we gather around drinking tea, we unite. Tea brings people together. To build a unique story for Unitea, I developed a campaign web site to inform our customers the five core principles we valued: clarity, connectivity, community, charity and creativity. I called them “The Five C’s of Unitea.”