As I mentioned in Wednesday’s Weekly Reader, this past week I was invited back for this year’s Camp Firebelly’s End of Camp Party. It was great to see everyone again! And for the few of you who weren’t able to make it for one reason or another, just know that you were very much missed!
This year’s camp worked with The Young Women Empowerment Project to design logos, promotional materials, and posters. I thought the poster was especially well-done, and the hand-written type used on the postcard was great inspiration for a personal project that I’m currently working on:
In addition, the campers worked with Mike Fretto of Rosa Loves to produce t-shirts to benefit Firebelly’s Reason to Give. Each t-shirt was designed as the result of a conversation with a participating family from Humbolt Park, and all proceeds from that shirt went to that family’s fund. What a great idea!
(Alas! I didn’t win the raffle!)
Some people may think that design can’t change our world for the better, and maybe they are right if you think that design is only about creating something thought-provoking with a good composition. But there is more to our profession than just creating, and it’s events like these that continue to inspire me to find ways to use my design powers for good. Thanks, Firebelly, for helping to start the fire.
Last year, I started a new tradition for myself by setting Design Resolutions for the year. After giving it a lot of thought the past 2 weeks, I think I am finally ready to set this year’s resolutions in stone. So, without further ado, here are they are:
- Be More Disciplined in How I Use My Free-Time
Now that I am back to working full-time, my free-time has once again gotten scarce. I need to focus on using the time I do have in the evenings and weekends more wisely to ensure I can accomplish the rest of this list.
- Launch the Portfolio Site
As a continuation of last year’s resolution, I want to actually launch the site I designed. (I still haven’t been able to get past the hurdle of how to build it out in WordPress.) Whether this means I step up my research efforts so I can code it myself, or that I pass it off to a partner to code it, it will be done! And soon!
- Post More Frequently
While moving to Chicago over the past 6 months or so, I got into the bad habit of not posting here as often as I used to: going to get back in the habit.
- Personal Project of the Week
Yesterday, I had a very inspiring talk with Jason Schwartz, and he challenged me to do one personal project a week. Sounds easy…yet from past resolutions, I know how hard it can be. Whether it’s something as simple as a desktop background or writing an article of design, or as complex/time-consuming as embroidering a new design or doing an ad hoc redesign of a company’s site, this is the year I think I can do it…especially if I have others willing to help me hold to it.
- Find Studio Space
To help with number 4, and allow me to get back into the screen printing habit, I’ll need to find some place that I can spread out my work and not be afraid to get messy.
- Be More Inventive With Typography
I have a lot of really great ideas on how typefaces I want to use in personal projects should look…but have lacked the ability to realize them on paper: practice makes perfect!
In addition, I have two general resolutions that I made for myself this year that somewhat fit in with my design resolutions…
- Take Classes
This is the perfect time in my life to take classes on things that I really want to learn: whether they be on coding/html or more swing dancing classes. I’m going to count the bowling league my friends and I joined as part of this…especially since I currently average around 75 per game. (although for the record, I Have broken 100 before…once…and not on the wii either.)
- Read 2 Books a Month
I just saw Linden’s post on her booklist for the year, and it inspired me to vow to read more. (I’ll have to watch this one though as once I get on a roll, I tend to read too much…) I’m hoping to knock off some of the design books on my booklist while I’m at it. Be sure to check out Linden’s list too as she has some really good ones on there: especially if you are interested in linguistics or running.
Over the past six months, my blogging has been sporadic at best, so naturally there have been a few news items that got lost in the shuffle. So what better way to recap everything than with a nice, big post with pictures?
My Photography Featured in Food Network Magazine
If you recall, I announced this past May that my photo of Lindsay and her Fresher Than Fresh Snowcones trailer was featured in the June issue of Food Network Magazine. After finally getting my hands on a copy of the issue earlier this summer, I was pleasantly surprised to see just how big the photo appeared in the spread. Lindsay has since closed the stand for the winter, but be sure to follow her on twitter to see when she opens it once again in the spring!
My Quote Featured in Brand New’s Sketchbook
Back in June, Brand New’s Armin Vit asked readers to contribute why they sketch logos. Selected responses were to be included in a new mystery product, with winners receiving their own copy. Imagine my surprise to not only be included in the project, but also to find this delightful sketchbook in my mailbox about a month later! Thanks, UnderConsideration!
My response? “When sketching, you’re already reducing the logo down into 2 flat colors: it helps me think about the form and technical issues before I make it ‘fancy.'”
Firebelly’s Reason to Give Show an Inspiration
Finally, on a side note, I was able to attend Firebelly Design’s Reset. Play! show which was a benefit for their Reason to Give non-profit. The show was very inspirational and had some awesome work. Plus, it was a great opportunity for an impromptu reunion of Camp friends from this summer (at least the ones currently in Chicago). All of the work was great, but I especially loved the typographic explorations by Will and Darren.
I just saw that my recycled business cards I posted about last week are currently featured on The Design Cubicle! Brian held a call for entries for his post on 50 Creative Business Cards of 50 Graphic Designers, and mine was chosen as one of them! I’m in excellent company too: among them is former classmate, Colin Wright. Check out the article for some great business card inspiration.
I’m planning a job-hunting trip to New York City later this week, and realized that I was lower on business cards than I thought I was. In a way, the timing is perfect as I’m in the process of updating my cards and printing them along with the cards I’m designing for several people who were laid off at the same time I was. (We’re ganging up the print job to keep costs low, and I’ve given discounts on the design to everyone in exchange for leads on freelance work.) On the down side, the new cards won’t be done in time for the trip this week.
In the spirit of going green, I figured this was an excellent time to recycle the first batch of business cards I ever made. While a sophomore in college, our class printed business cards together. I never used them. I loved the design, but the cards quickly became out of date. The next semester, Southwest Missouri State became Missouri State University leaving me with a huge stack of cards featuring a now-defunct email address. A little bit of craftiness, some Avery labels, and a photo-magenta ink cartridge later, they now look like this:
Not bad, eh? I’m glad to finally be able to use the old cards, and am happy with how they turned out. Consider them a limited edition and be sure grab one for yourself when you see me!
I just blogged today on S&D about all the things you can do while being unemployed. (Because without a job, there’s just tons of freetime…that’s a joke, son, a joke!) But seriously, building onto the Passions posts, unemployment is a great time to pick up some new hobbies/skills. These were just a few of the ones I thought others might enjoy. While twittering for AIGA the other day, I also found a great article by Kevin Fullerton of Springboard Creative: Take the Long View on Your Job Search has some great tips for job hunting in this economy.
I just finished uploading all of the photos I took at the A5 Awards Gala on Saturday night. The event went fairly smoothly from start to finish, and we’ve even gotten some good press.
I included shots of the show featuring this year’s winners. Some of the photos of the work aren’t the best shots, but trust me when I say everything looked fantastic. You can find the albums on our Facebook page or just scroll through the Flickr set on the slideshow below:
I had intended my next post to be somewhat more fun in nature, but decided to put it on hold when I saw what Megan Frau posted yesterday on her blog. I first heard about the Orphan Works Bill when our former printmaking professor forwarded an email to us explaining that Congress is currently trying to pass it. This excerpt from the email can explain the issue better than I can:
The US Congress is proposing legislation that would “orphan” all your copyrighted art works, unless you register each and every work you produce in future and have produced in the past with an outside agency! Otherwise people could use your images without payment or permission, since it will be considered “orphaned” and will have no copyright protection.
It’s a terrible piece of legislation! [….] Right now, under the Berne Convention, an artist has a right to copyright as soon as a work is completed. He or she has to do nothing to “register” it as copyright. It’s automatically protected by copyright. Now our Congress is proposing to overturn that International treaty (yes, another one!) by it’s proposed actions.
Under the proposed legislation, you would have to digitize all your existing works and all future works, and pay a fee for each work to an outside registry to protect its copyright. This is appalling. And also would be unaffordable for most artists, as well as often logistically impossible. I personally have hundreds of existing works “out there”, and many photographers I know have even more.
â€”Kevin via studioNOTES
Aside from forwarding the onto people I thought might be interested, I kept meaning to email my congressman. Megan’s links to Illustrator Partnership’s Legislative Action Center prompted me to do it this morning. I’ll link you to their LAC home as it has a lot of really great information and resources for artists about the issue. The first 2 links on the page are the ones I used to email my congressmen, and it literally took me 15 minutes to do. Further, I noticed that the deviantART community has a petition going online.
If anyone has any other links that are helpful regarding the issue, please feel free to add them as a comment below.