Nassim has a job
My story so far...
I am a creative individual with a passion for music and design.
At the age of 13, I got my first electric guitar. Since then, making music has been my greatest joy in life. By the age of 15, I began dabbling in HTML and CSS, and experimenting with software such as Photoshop and Illustrator to develop my skills as a designer.
After 4 years studying Product Design, my life has come to a crossroads. Do I pursue design, or music?
I think I'll do both.
Currently working on:
HTML5 Audio Player
Web & Visual
Below is a list of photography, web, and graphic design software and languages and my relative proficiency.
Click Skills to read more ...
Adobe Photoshop was the first software I ever learnt to use. I've been using it for about 10 years, so I know my way around.
I use PS for anything from editing and manipulating photographs, to designing websites and graphics.
I didn't properly use Adobe Illustrator until 1st year of uni. But since then I have used it extensively in various mediums, and would consider myself fairly adept. Most of my logos and icons are initially drawn up in Illustrator and exported as paths to Photoshop for further embellishing.
NOTE: The beautiful icons on this website are from IcoMoon - kudos! I will eventually replace them with my own (once I've designed them).
- HTML / CSS
The first website I ever made was hand-coded entirely in HTML - I didn't even know what CSS was back then! As soon as I discovered CSS, my interest in web design grew rapidly.
My main strengths lie in front-end development and design, and although my portfolio for web design is sparse, I consider myself very experienced in HTML and CSS (for being self-taught at least).
I am still a bit of a n00b when it comes to JQuery, but I picked up a lot from building this site.
Most of the plugins I use are sourced from other sites, however I've been writing my own functions, and 'tweaking' plugins to suit my needs.
I'm quickly learning new technologies such as Jquery increase my skill-set and enhance my websites.
A friend of mine introduced me to Tumult's Hype a year or so ago, and I have since spent a lot of time using it to build HTML5 animations and interfaces.
It is a useful tool that I can call upon easily as an alternative to Flash animations - albeit far less extensive than Flash.
In addition to web & visual skills, below is a miscellaneous list of software and systems, and my relative proficiency.
Click Skills to read more ...
- Logic Pro
Logic Pro is my #1 choice DAW. I only started learning Logic Pro less than a year ago, but I have spent a lot of time with it since. I mainly use it for demoing purposes, but more recently, I've been learning to use it as a production tool.
I am comfortable using it for tracking live instruments, basic programming, and mixing.
- Ableton Live
I am only scratching the surface of Ableton, as I have only been using it for a few months. For me, it's not as intuitive as Logic, but it's certainly more suitable for programming and live use - hence the name.
I hope to set aside more time to learn Ableton, to eventually use it in live performances.
- Mac OS
I'm a Mac user. I grew up in a Mac household, so I didn't really have a choice. But if I did, I'd still use Mac OS, because I have an immense appreciation for its beautifully designed, intuitive interfaces.
I hate windows. But I can use it if I have to. Just don't expect me to smile in the process.
Rhino was a very useful tool during my time at uni. I used it mainly to 'sketch' 3D CAD models during my projects, which would then by rendered using a plugin called V-Ray. On a few occasions, I processed my 3D models in the Rapid Prototyping machine in the uni workshop, for use in maquettes and prototypes.
I know it's unrelated, but I bake cookies like a boss. Just thought I'd mention that.
The Belmont Picturehouse is an arts cinema on Belmont St., Aberdeen.
The brief was pretty open for this one: Design a flyer for the Tuesday film quiz at the Belmont (Where Film Buffs Dare) that will appeal to the target demographic.
So I chose an iconic film poster that film 'buffs' would recognise (Reservoir Dogs), adapted it, and put a 'Belmont' spin on it. Easy peasy.
This is a demo I was working on in the summer. The idea was inspired by the many journeys driven on coastal roads - my frequent escape.
The photo that accompanies the track was taken on Aberdeen beach, with a dear friend, Robert MacKenzie doing some kind of crazy backflip thing.
Make Spot is an open makers map that aims to crowdsource local knowledge on a global scale.
Makespot was the last website Ramsay and I made together. It was designed to spec. for a friend of ours as part of his honours project.
Ramsay built the website backend framework using a customised version of the Google Maps API, which allowed site visitors to add their own 'makespots' to the map.
I designed and built the front end of the site on a responsive grid. The design was based on the familiar default style of the Google Maps API, making use of CSS box-shadow to give the illusion of three-dimensional depth.
An alternate version of the site was later made with customised map colours (last slide).
Semperfi are an up and coming metal band from Aberdeen, Scotland.
This was the first website I built with my friend Ramsay Shiells. A friend of ours from the band had asked us to build them a fully functional website to promote their new album release.
The project was on a tight timescale, as the site had to be ready for the album launch, so the pressure was on.
Once again, Ramsay built the website backend, with a CMS for the band to update certain sections of the site themselves. The News Feed was synced with the band's Facebook page and Twitter account to create one seamless feed of news and updates.
We made use of a number of plugins and APIs for audio players, photo and video galleries, and even Google Maps in the Gigs section.
Unfortunately, for the front end, I had very little creative input on this one. It was simply a case of cutting up the graphics provided by the band from their album artwork, structuring it into a site layout, and mimicking the style for the site content.
I did however, use the opportunity to test drive Hype, and built a header that animates once the site has loaded. Pretty snazzy!
Credit goes to Gary Addison of Semperfi for all the artwork and graphics.
MAR / 2012
HTML / CSS / Hype / Photoshop
USA Studios is a state-of-the-art video content distribution company for both advertisers and program creators.
This project wasn't really a project, as such. It was more a chance for me to practice my branding and visualisation skills. I explored the USA Studios brand and its sub-brands, like a case study of sorts, and attempted to give the brand a more sleek and modern corporate image.
There was no definitive resolution to the exercise, but some ideas were developed into more resolved visualisations, and presented in a more 'holistic' context.
You may have already noticed, but one of the ideas bears a strong resemblance to the Sky logo - I was really just trying to recreate that shiny, glassy effect.
R&B Music is Aberdeen's oldest and foremost musical instrument store.
The design work I did while working at R&B was all based from one set of graphics (first slide). At first, I had designed a vintage style poster to be printed onto a sheet of aluminium, which could be placed anywhere outdoors.
The same graphics were used for a few other posters, which were placed around Aberdeen on cylindrical Public Information Pillars to raise awareness of the shop's location.
I made a duotone (yellow + blue) version of the graphics to design the new R&B shopping bag. The aim was to create a bold design that could be recognised from a distance, and stand out amongst other bags.
Finally, during the Christmas period, I put together some Christmas cards, which were handed out on the street. Customers could use the card to claim a free gift and enter into a prize draw. The shop's footfall was substantially increased almost instantly.
Raise The Alarm
Amber Wilson is a singer / songwriter from Aberdeen, currently singing with Bombay Bicycle Club.
Amber released this single (or 'double' as we like to call it) online back in 2011, and she kindly asked her boyfriend (me), who had also played all the instruments for both tracks, to design the artwork too. Lucky me!
The photo artwork accompanied the online release, and the graphics were made for a limited edition CD - which included bonus tracks.
Each year, about 60 million women in developing countries give birth with only the help of an untrained attendant or family member, or with no help at all. Every year up to 385,000 women die in pregnancy and childbirth. 99% of these deaths take place in developing countries where resources are scarce.
The major causes of maternal deaths due to direct obstetric complications are haemorrhage, sepsis, prolonged and obstructed labor, and hypertensive disorders. At least 15 percent of all pregnancies are expected to require and emergency medical intervention.
Ourglass is a tool for promoting a safe and natural childbirth in low-resource settings. The primary function of the object is to communicate four key messages associated with the best practices in childbirth. It also aims to empower mothers to be in control of their labour and to take decisions into their own hands.
The concept is based on a traditional sand hourglass – one of the oldest methods of measuring time – but with a more logistically sound form. During labour, the timer is used to remind the mother to stay hydrated, to empty her bladder frequently, and to change position every 15 minutes. Should a midwife or birth attendant be present, the timer also displays a reminder to check the fetal heart rate.
If after 8 cycles of the timer – 2 hours – the labour is not progressing, the mother should seek emergency health care.
Ourglass is a tool for promoting a safe and natural childbirth in low-resource settings.
At the beginning of my fourth year honours project, I set myself the seemingly simple goal of focusing on one current issue, and finding a design solution. However, I immediately set myself up for a rough ride when I decided to choose the issue of maternal and infant mortality in developing countries. Obviously there is no silver bullet to a crisis of this magnitude, but if I could offer at least one design solution to address even one micro-factor of the issue, I'd be doing well.
So after months of research, I narrowed down my area of focus to the issue of unsafe home-birth, using the Three Delays Model as a strong reference throughout. This brought me to the idea of a timer, to be used by Birth Attendants, particularly in the context of home birth.
The primary function of the timer is to communicate four key messages associated with the best practices in childbirth. It also aims to empower mothers to be in control of their labour and to take decisions into their own hands.
The product itself could easily adopt many forms. The key importance is not in its form, but in the message it delivers. Therefore, I envisage the Ourglass being made with anything from blow-moulded glass and glass beads, to plastic bottles and sand.
CNCCB / CNCCC
The Canadian National Concrete Canoe Competition (CNCCC) / La Compétition nationale canadienne de canoë de béton (CNCCB) is a university level competition held annually at one of the participating Canadian universities.
In early 2011, I was commissioned to design the logo for CNCCB / CNCCC 2011. The logo was to be used in a variety of promotional material, from official documentation and press releases to banners and t-shirts, so it had to be simple and bold.
The logo was created using Illustrator, and my new toy at the time - a Bamboo graphics tablet - was used to sketch the canoe and canoeists' outlines. It was provided to the client as a vector, and provided in a number of formats and colours to allow flexibility in its use.
JAN / 2011
Illustrator / Graphics Tablet
This was a small project in uni, where the class had to model a USB stick in Rhino to exact dimensions.
The model was then rendered in V-Ray, where we were able to experiment with lighting and material properties.
MAR / 2010
Rhino / V-Ray
Drucket is a sanitation solution for disaster affected areas.
This was my first self-directed project in uni. Although the project spanned over only half a semester, I think I learnt more in that short time, than I had the previous two years.
The project was research intensive! I had studied everything there was to know about disaster sanitation. The key point from the research was that sanitation in disaster areas had to be dealt with great care, timeliness, and preparedness, in order to avoid increasing hazards and prolonging recovery.
My proposed solution was the Drucket (Drill + Bucket Latrine). The Drucket's design is based on a bucket latrine, shaped like a drill bit. It could be 'drilled' into the ground by two people, using a steel bar threaded through the eyelets in the Drucket.
The Drucket is then lined with a bio-degradable waste bag, and sealed with an airtight lid to prevent cross-contamination from insects and rodents or flooding.
The disaster population could use the Druckets as they would normal toilets, until the waste-bag had reached a specific volume. Then the Drucket would be 'un-screwed' from the ground, the waste-bag would be removed, sealed airtight, and buried in the hole created by the Drucket.
The Drucket could then be reinstalled in another area, relined and reused. Over a period of two years, the waste-bag would naturally decompose into the soil.
First slide image sourced from Irin
Balmoral Tanks Ltd, a division of Balmoral Group Holdings Ltd, is a leading European engineering design and manufacturing company.
This project was the first project in uni where we had a direct link with a client. Balmoral had set us the challenge of designing a rain water harvesting (RWH) system that could be easily manufactured with their facilities.
During a tour of the Balmoral Tanks HQ, we were able to see their manufacturing processes, including large scale roto-moulding, in action.
After some research, I identified that the most likely areas to benefit from RWH would be countries that experience extreme droughts. So the main issue was the logistics of transporting large water storage tanks to these locations.
My proposed solution was a three-part roto-moulded tank. The tank could be easily stacked to make use of the negative space during transportation. Then at its destination, the tank top and bottom could be sealed with a large gasket system, and placed underneath a large catchment for rainwater collection.
The lid of the tank could be fastened through the eyelets in two positions: open to allow water to pass through, or closed.
Belmont St, Aberdeen, UK
As a FOH assistant at Picturehouse, my responsibilities included:
- Serving food and drinks, and general cleaning duties at the Kiosk
- Selling tickets and memberships in the Box Office
- Ushering customers to the screens and cleaning out the screens between showings
Whilst working at the Belmont, I was asked to design a new poster/flyer for the Tuesday night Film Quiz, which can be seen here.
67 Green, Aberdeen, UK
As a shop assistant at R&B Music, my responsibilities included:
- Demonstrating products and providing advice to customers
- Carrying out basic repairs and maintenance to musical instruments
- Arranging shop displays, replenishing stock, and managing stockrooms
During my time at R&B, I designed a few posters and graphics, which can be seen here.
Bahá’í World Centre
Supervisor / Security Guard
As a volunteer Security guard and Supervisor, my responsibilities included:
- Monitoring and maintaining area security
- Line managing 4 guards
- Conducting regular safety and fire equipment checks
- Co-ordinating daily traffic flow and crowd control during events
- Carrying out frequent vehicle and personnel checks
- Working on-call for special events and emergencies
Aberdeen City Council
Housing Repairs Dept.
St. Nicholas House, Broad St, Aberdeen, UK
As a Telephone Operator in the Housing Repairs Department, my responsibilities included:
- Answering calls from Council Tenants
- Processing and monitoring work orders
- Making calls to trades agencies to pursue work orders.
Gray's School Of Art
BDES (Hons) - Product Design (2:1)
Robert Gordon University
Received John Gray Award 2010
The Product Design course at Gray's stretched over a wide variety of disciplines. As product designers, we were expected to wear many hats, in a sense, whilst maintaining a strong understanding of our fundamental role as a designer.
While many skills can be taught, innovation comes from the heart of a 'creative', and is both rare and valuable.
Our studio work included anything from modelling with 3D CAD and prototyping with raw materials in the workshop, to in-depth ethnographic and market research. In addition, our course included the following modules:
- Critical and Contextual Studies
- Applied Management
- Consumer Behaviour
- Management of Innovation
- Design for Manufacture
- Business Start-up