Militsa Ruseva

Graphic Design BDes (Hons)

Passionate about bright colours and coffee, side interests include graphic design, anything branding and film photography.

About

In the four years of studying at DJCAD, I have developed a great appreciation for clear and effective visual communication and research-driven design. Looking back, my favourite briefs were those in collaboration with industry professionals as they inspired me to keep learning about the different practices within Graphic Design.

For my final three projects, presented below, I selected briefs which tackle current topics and trends. Most of my work is focused on creating branding design and associated advertising material, based on the interest and needs of the modern consumer. I am very interested in the impact of social media on branding and how it will keep developing in the future. Overall, I have thoroughly enjoyed the design process this year and am very excited to be sharing the results.

Throughout the academic year, I was also involved in the amazing team of The Magdalen Magazine as a Social Media Manager. My main responsibility was to design content for the main social media channels and the experience has improved my team-working and time-managing skills.

Muddle - Adaptogenic Lemonade Spritz

An aluminium can of the drink ‘Muddle’ is positioned in the centre of the image, slightly tilted with a splash of water, captured spilling mid-air, surrounding it. One sentence description of the brand purpose positioned to the right side of the image.

Muddle is a brand concept for a non-alcoholic adaptogenic drink in response to the 2022 Hatch competition. The aim of this brief is to design a functional drinks brand that’s centred around emotional wellbeing. Main focus was placed on identifying the modern consumers’ needs and expectations in regard to the beverage market. Considering that the global pandemic has greatly impacted consumer behaviour, there has been a rising interest in drinks, that improve cognitive function. Research shows that the majority of the population struggles to remain productive, particularly in the afternoon hours. This is where the idea of the Midday Muddle stems from. ‘Muddle’ is based on powerful adaptogens and supplements which help boost the mood and sharpen the mind. The main feature of the branding design is a yawning lemon, which communicates both the lemon spritz flavour and the tedious feeling of pushing through endless deadlines during a busy day at the office.

Women's Heartcare Scotland

Photograph of woman with two children sitting on a sofa together. A pair of illustrated hands hold up heart-shaped glasses, with focus on the face of the woman in the picture.

This project was an entry for the 2022 RSA Student Design Awards. I chose to work on the brief Healthy Hearts and develop a proposition for future improvement of health inequalities within the cardiovascular health sector. Even though in recent years it has come to the public’s knowledge that women face various inequalities when seeking medical attention for heart conditions, there is a lack of appropriate visual communication. Many women are unaware of the risks of heart disease and are unable to recognise primary symptoms because of the common stereotype of men being more vulnerable to these illnesses. Women’s Heartcare Scotland is a campaign which aims to raise awareness on the these issues and encourage Scottish women and their loved ones to take a closer look at their hearts.

Think outside the book (Penguin x D&AD)

This project is a response to the 2022 D&AD New Blood Awards brief in collaboration with Penguin. The brief’s main aim is to identify how books and reading can become an unmissable part of pop culture. My solution is an advertising campaign titled “Think outside the book”, which encourages readers to unleash their imagination and inhabit the minds of fictional characters. The concept is inspired by the popular TikTok trend of “adopting main character energy” in pursuit of self-love, but for this project, a more literal meaning is given to the expression. The campaign communicates the deep connection readers form with certain book storylines, in comparison to other visual media that enforce more artificial relationships. The campaign deliverables include both traditional print advertisement and digital marketing tools which open a discussion amongst people about how they imagine themselves as characters in the plot.

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