Children of Men Fake Media
I got linked this video, which contains all the fake media created for the movie 'Children of Men' (see my earlier post).
Aside from sci-fi geek fun, I loved watching them to analyse the graphical designs they used. One of the subjects I'll be talking about in my OSCMS talk about design is branding and style. If you're going to attend, here's a great opportunity to do your homework.
Having an eye for graphical design is as important as creative skill, but luckily you can train on this. Each of these ads or clips has a different look tailored towards the product and its audience. Look at the graphical elements, such as images, colors, typography and animation and try to figure out why it's appropriate and effective. There's also some public signage in there which has a style of its own.
If you have some time, a good trick is to take a particular design, look at it for a couple minutes, then try to reproduce it in a graphical program like Photoshop or Illustrator. When you're done, compare your version with the original, and try to figure out what you did different and whether this makes it better or worse. Look for qualities like readability, alignment, typography, contrast and aesthetics. The ones in the movie are probably a bit too graphical each, but you can do this for logos or web sites too.
Tip: you can slowly move forwards or backwards in a QuickTime video by scrolling up/down.