Background: I read an article about types of failure in school and thought about classmates who had not turned projects in on time.
I was inspired to create some art for one of the ideas, that children can react in different ways to failure. They and their adults need to understand that failure is part of the path to success.
How could I illustrate that idea? I created an "awareness ribbon" for failure and success. Actually, I created two and I need to know which is better, or if they need more work and what kind of work.
Ribbon #1 has the "Failures" part of the ribbon on top because that is the beginning of the sentence.
Ribbon #2, below, has the "part of success" half on top because that is how you drape a ribbon: the first half on bottom, then the second part crosses it on top. I expect people to read "part of success" first because it is larger and on top. Then they will do a double-take, go back and read the beginning of the sentence and finish with "part of success" again. Or maybe they won't read anything!
Maybe that is psychologically right, too: Failure is there, but focus on success.
Also notice that the "failures" end of the ribbon is gray and cut blunt, but the "success" part is blue like a blue ribbon and the ends are trimmed in an inverted "V." I tried many other versions.
However, beginning graphic designers may be interested to know that the design below, Ribbon #3, was an earlier version. I tried to use a gimmick: emphasis on one of the letters that "failures" and "success" have in common, namely, the letter "u." It just did not seem to work out and I changed versions.
I've come up with gimmick ideas before and I'm beginning to recognize that they may look clever in thumbnails but turn out to be a huge waste of time. I can sketch gimmicks, but I need to move past gimmicks and do something simpler. Or at least gimmicks have been a waste of time for me.
Question #2: How do you feel about gimmicks in your design practice (and what do you call them)? Are they useful? A waste of time? Depends on something?