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Creativity is Carefully Considered Content

While I have always loved to read, and appreciated writing as a creative art, I had not always liked to write for myself as much as I do now.  I'm sure many designers can say the same as we work through editing in the era of "content is king." I started with a love of creativity and typography. My formal design education taught me the beauty in letter forms. There are simple and subtle differences in fonts and letters that is an art in and of itself. I personally love a sans serif with a perfectly round O, but the ability to use Optima as a serif or sans serif font makes that choice pleasing too.

The ability to write interesting content didn't come from formal education, but almost from osmosis. I've learned many things by osmosis. I've joked that I've learned liturgy by osmosis while working for a religious organization. I'd even say my parenting skills have come from being immersed in my little one's lives. That's not to say I didn't wo…
Recent posts

Time to Read Mo Books

When someone starts to say "I will.." in my household, someone else usually follows with "...eat the ice cream!" We're immersed in a new creative world, children's literature and cartoons. The past few weeks the designer in me is geeking out over Mo Willems' Elephant and Piggie series. Our first book, "Should I Share My Ice Cream," was a gift. A well read over and over and over gift! Then Santa brought our household a second Elephant and Piggie book, "Waiting is not Easy." Now I'm hooked! Gerald (Elephant's actual name) and Piggie are funny and cute. But it's not just that, the design elements woven into the book help to tell the story. Storytelling, ahhh, the product of all good design! Gerald and Piggie are very simplified characters, and I've come to appreciate simplified illustrations I had overlooked in the past. The simplification helps focus on the characters' situations and emotions, which the stories re…

And There's a Light on Heavy Glow

Listening to a band's tracks on your device, or watching a recorded performance can not come close to the experience of being present at a concert. When you are at a show, you are immersed in the experience. The music is inspiring, just as it is when you are listening to the tracks, but the energy, ambient noise and cheers from the crowd around you lead to even more excitement with each song the band plays.

For me, the combination of uniquely written lyrics, engaging audio and quality visuals lead to an extremely immersed creative experience. As a visual artist, I love the visual effects, and each year it seems that concert visual technology improves. Some bands you expect an incredible stage show from. Rush is the first band that comes to mind with incredible visual effects with each show. The "Holy Triumvirate's" nod to their trio status with onstage props along with their video displays that include an actual fire breathing dragon, really round out the creativity…

What's in Stock?

Ten to fifteen years ago when I saw an image while looking at a print ad in a magazine or passing a billboard on the street, I most likely recognized the image, and could tell you what Stock Photo CD that image was on. CDs from companies like Comstock and Photodisc were a familiar part of our design resource library.

Stock photo services have come a long way since I first started using them. Today, I start with an online search of some of my favorite stock photo services. There are so many places for both hobby and professional photographers to upload their photos, I often find what I'm looking for after a short search, a quick click of a download button, and without having to pay a thing! Plus, it feels good to find unique images and support artists of all experience levels.

That is, when I need to use stock photos. With digital cameras, so many clients have their own photos, or I can take photos to fit the project. Of course the quality of the photo needed will depend on the si…

Seeing the Creative Process at Work

The behind the scenes process that goes into the creation of visual art of any kind is interesting and exciting to me. I'll never forget the slow, loud clicking sound that traveled through the Akron Beacon Journal as the printing presses were started. The smell of the ink and the sight of the web of paper woven in and out of the cylinders was fun to watch everytime. What started as an idea translated into a design on my computer screen, went through many hands before ending with the final project in print.

It seems, very much the same in the production of a movie, except in a larger and lengthier scale. We've been very lucky in the Cleveland area to see that production, as major motion picture companies come here to film on location. The newest one in town is Marvel Comic's Captain America: Winter Soldier. The amount of work that went into one 34 second scene was incredible. A whole day of preparation the day before included cranes, tons of weight hove…

Olympics Superior Athleticism and Design

Even if you're not a sports fan, it's hard to not get caught up in Olympic fever, or at least it's hard to avoid seeing Olympic coverage. I enjoy watching some sports more than others, but my creative side has enjoyed this year's Olympics for another reason, the excellent visual design. The Olympic committee and many of the sponsor companies and broadcast companies of the world have adapted the Olympic emblem into their own design elements. It is great to know so many graphic artists were active in creatively incorporating the spirit of the Olympics. The most obvious design element, is the Olympic rings emblem with its symbolic forms and color. It doesn't take an interpretation to see that the circles represent unity and the colors are representation of all the participating countries' flags. But this year in particular, NBC's London Olympic logo is a favorite logo of mine. This shield pulls your eye from top to bottom. Even with the heavier graphics and co…

Summer Drawing & Photo Break2

While the heat has been unbearable to some, I've been enjoying getting outside for art breaks. There have been so many collage ideas and photo and drawing opportunities.  Brushing up on hand skills, after so many years focused on computer related design, continues to be refreshing. I'll have plenty of material to inspire and work with when we're all stuck back inside.

Here's one of my recent drawing breaks, Cleveland's Fountain of Eternal Life on the Mall. It's a nice refreshing spot in the summer.