In the early development stages where I was developing facial expressions, the characters worked well. They looked friendly, simple and relatable. However, when coming to creating the final designs I was too careful, I wanted them to be too perfect and straight. This really didn’t work, and others agreed. The feedback I received on my early development was much more positive that what I was getting for my final images. I knew that I needed to change this somehow. The previous images were drawn by hand and then scanned in, however, I decided that I would use my Wacom and draw directly into Adobe Illustrator, this way if I made any mistakes it would be easy to erase. By changing the method that I was used to draw I achieved much more soft and friendly characters. I now just needed to apply these new characters to the needs of Graves Park.
The signage found at Graves Park Animal Farm was something that I felt needed to be thought about carefully. I decided to look back that the images that I had collected from my visit and looked carefully at their needs. By doing this it was clear to see that the signage needed a bit of TLC, however, there were many factors to consider. The animals are moved around to different enclosures or paddocks, and so, creating a sign that could be easily changed was a must. There are also many other informative signs that appear, such as the ‘do not feed’ signs. All were water damaged and in some places easy to miss.
I wanted to find a way that both the name of the animal and the feeding information were clear to both adults and children, as well as easy to change and move. The new signage for the Animal Farm, is a lightweight, coloured character. There are two main examples, one green (can feed) and one red (do not feed). Each character is holding a whiteboard, this can be written on using a standard whiteboard marker and erased with ease. This allows the staff to change the information accordingly.
In order to establish an attachment between the visitors and the characters, I wanted to develop merchandise that would be available to purchase in the information Centre on site. The product it an A2 sized activity poster for children of primary school age. These have a number of tasks for the child to complete as well as colouring in.