Year: 2012

Tomorrowland

Tomorrowland October 27 – December 8 Curated by Samantha Fields, this is a group exhibition featuring artists whose work depicts visions of future dystopias based on a turbulent present.  Desert wastelands, faux fallen satellites, devises designed to ensure your survival and a world seemingly run by giant computer servers; the artists in this show offer a prescient window into a world that not only may be, but in some places, already exists. Artists include Lisa Adams, Libby Clarke, Daniel Dove, Trygve Faste, Sean Higgins, Kelly McLane,  Thomas Muller and Klutch Stanaway. Additional events in conjunction for this exhibition taking place in Art and Design Center Rm 300 (Purple Crit Room) are as follows: November 5: Lecture,  Libby Clarke  — 10 am November 5-8 Workshops with Libby Clarke  — Time TBD Our write-up in LA Weekly: Disney’s Tomorrowland Inspires an Art Show by Annie Tucker, Thursday, Nov 29 2012

Terribly Helpful Sign

The Terribly Helpful Sign is a simple device to help the user develop awareness of and display a statement about his/her emotional state. Dimensions: 5.5″x7.5″ Framed: 12″ x 16″ Medium: Screenprint Completed: November 2012

Here & Now: A Movement in the Making

I was a speaker during the section of the program for Contemporary and Traditional Mash-ups, since the Here & Now project combines popular media (apps and sticker slapping) and traditional present-minded practice. Here & Now: A Movement in the Making 12th Biennial Pyramid Atlantic Book Arts Fair and Conference Pyramid Atlantic, Silver Springs, Maryland

Protest posters with CSUN students

I am just back from Los Angeles, having spent an amazing week there working with some incredibly bright students at California State University Northridge (CSUN). I was able to lead 2 groups (about 40 people each) through the history of protest posters and printmaking, and then we designed and printed our own using screen printing. I was invited there by Professor Samantha Fields, who had selected my work to be in a group show called Tomorrowland. Before each workshop, I gave a short lecture on the history of protest posters and its relationship to different forms of printmaking, going through the last several hundred years and then focusing back on the 1968 student protests of Paris. That era was particularly well-documented, and the students were able to organize themselves into an efficient propaganda machine, all because they learned how to screen print. This method of printing enabled them to produce and hang posters that had been conceived only that morning. Of course there were other centers of student protest, but I have a certain fondness for the Paris uprising in particular. Once we had …

Here & Now

Here & Now is a multifaceted project: the user receives a sticker set, imprinted with the words Here and Now. He/she then places these prominently around his/her life. Later, these stickers serve as prompts to snap to the Here & Now, thus helping the user to develop present-mindedness. There was also an iPhone app: the user would take a picture of the sticker in use, geo-tags and labels it, and thus record his/her Here & Now for others to see. These were then stored on the website as an ongoing record of the project. Dimensions: 3.5″ diameter, closed Framed: 12″ x 12″ Medium: Letterpress, diecut, website, phone app Completed: August 2012

Game of Love: User Testing

This piece was developed as a print piece for the back of the program I designed for the CSUN Tomorrowland show. I have had a few different ideas for the Game of Love, so I decided to send out a prototype for user testing by volunteers. I got back a few responses, all positive. I have since gone back to the drawing board, and hope to develop this as an app involving remote 3D printing. From the game: What is love? How does it operate in your life? Do you give as much love as you get? This little board game is a simple way to exercise your ability to give and take love. Rules of the game: Roll the die to determine playing order: the person with the highest number goes first and so on. Roll the die to determine how many spaces to move forward. Follow any directions on the block where you land. Play is continued until all players reach the Finish square. The player with the point total closest to zero wins …

Why do I design?

I create because I believe people are essentially good. Before you click away, just wait. I’m not saying every person in the world behaves in ways that are always good. That is not possible, and I know that. I am saying that each and every one of us has the potential to be and do good. That’s the whole reason I get out of bed in the morning, make stuff, and generally live. It’s important to check in with your core motivations once in a while–that way you can tell if you are still on course, as it were. My logic goes like this: People have the potential to be and do good. In fact, unless we are stunted in some way, we just naturally tend to do and be good. Any person can do good by reaching out and helping others learn to tap that potential. The entire world gets incrementally better the more #2 happens. There will come a day when everybody born will have a reasonable chance to be and do good. This is …

Bread-and-butter work can make or break a designer

Think of this as a primer for the novice designer and a call back to arms for the experienced art director. For those of you unfamiliar with design work, there are different chunks to be done. There is the high-level thinking where you come up with ideas, there is sketching where you develop your ideas visually, and finally there is production, where most of the thinking has already been done and all you do is implement the design. In general, production is viewed as the least challenging from a design point of view, and it usually falls upon the lower-level employees to complete it. For the most part, I call the routine, lower-level stuff bread-and-butter work as it puts a lot of food on the table. I used to work in a small agency where I handled all of the interaction design. Occasionally, I had access to interns who could do the grunt work for me, and certainly, these were respites from the crush of jobs. I started to think that perhaps I needed to find …

Since becoming a designer, I have become a better person.

Since becoming a design instructor, I have become a better designer. And amidst all of this, I have become a much better artist. I am incredibly lucky to be caught in this particular upward spiral, and I hope to help others find their own cycle of growth through teaching and writing. I started out as a fine artist, specifically a printmaker. My work was diaristic in nature, a lot of pictorial navel-gazing. Nothing much remarkable happened until I got to grad school and switched unexpectedly (involuntarily, even) to graphic design. All of a sudden, I had to confront and examine all these presuppositions I held about the act of cultural production. Here are a few I have successfully unraveled: You have to be obscure to have street cred I had always seen myself operating on the fringes of society, speaking to a select few. In the graphic design department at school, the designers were all striving to reach entire strata of the general population. Speaking to the mainstream in any way seemed like an immediate …

Super Smile Power

I worked on a project for Massiverse, including logo and website design. The project did not take off during the time I worked on it, but I had a blast–this client was so willing to explore and play with ideas.