Thursday, March 31, 2011

My Design Manifesto (Part 1 of many!)

Please don’t ask me to destroy my design initiative by requesting your logo to be “stretched to fit.” Would you want your child’s 1st birthday photos to be squished like an alien? What would you think if the Target logo was all of a sudden an oval? What if the UPS logo wasn’t a shield, but merely a sword?

Now I know how my dental assistant feels when I tell her I don't floss everyday!

You Are Beautiful

I am tired. I'm getting older. Age has taken a toll on my body and my appearance. The rates of wrinkles, crevices, and bags under my eyes are only increasing.
I wake up, get a shower, put on some clothes, and head out the door for work. I get into my equally worn Ford Focus, and glance up at the rear-view mirror. Staring back at me is a man who has seen better, younger days. This is only the beginning...
Every day I drive the same stretch of Cincinnati highway, so every day I see the same billboards. They are mainly littered with ads for hospitals, digital internet providers, and miscellaneous retail stores. However, on this day I am feeling particularly self-conscience, and apparently more aware. I pass the downtown sport's arena and see a large digital display promoting $1,500 eyelid plastic surgery. Hmmm... my eyelids are looking a little saggy. The next billboard that catches my eyes is a surgeon who touts performing "3,000 facelifts." That might help get rid of my crow's feet and sunken eyes. Another billboard. Another facelift. That will assist with "The Tracks of My Tears" and the canals leading from my nose to mouth. In total, I passed six billboards for plastic surgery within 10 miles. I would make some Michael Jackson reference, but I'm actually a fan so I will leave it at that.
Maybe I chose the wrong profession. I get a few hundred dollars for advanced Photoshop editing--these doctors get a few thousand. That's not the point (I don't actually do much digital facial reconstruction.) However, how many times do we need to exploit the insecurities of people with the promise of youth, the forecasts of before and after, and the hopeful advancements of skin care products?
As I've aged, I've realized that beauty truly does come from within. Furthermore, I now find beauty in "flaws." After all, everyone has their own idiosyncrasies that make up their personality, so why not characteristics that distinguish their individuality? Gray hair is a color in my palette; a wrinkle is a simple stroke from my brush; old age is a priceless Van Gogh painting.
I didn't buy into my own philosophy a few years ago. I remember writing the following lyrics, "I'm sorry that I'm not the person you want, I'm not symmetrical and my body's not proportional. I'm not the pretty face in your magazine. Oh no, I'm not."
Still, I may not be the pretty face in your magazine, but I am trying to embrace my aging. Wiser? I don't know, but I need to come to terms with reality. I'll end up looking like my father, mother, grandfather, grandmother, and that's fine. I'm tired, but so is everyone else.
If I had infinite money, maybe I'd purchase those six billboards to tell you you're beautiful the way you are. Sure, I'd be putting people out of business, but maybe the doctors could concentrate their efforts elsewhere. I am not against people resorting to facial reconstruction. All I am asking is to consult with people around you, and look at yourself as a piece of art.
Some of the most beautiful pieces of art do not concentrate on perfectionism, but on substance. What are the impressions, moods, and beauty of the message? Look deeper.
My message is you are beautiful. Hopefully, someday I’ll realize this is true of me. I am a perfectionist, but I need to make peace with the face in the rear-view mirror, so someday I again ignore the billboards that eluded me for all this time.

Opening Day

Here's to the new baseball season, and another Cincinnati Reds first place finish! I couldn't lay off the peanuts...

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Tuggie

I really don't want to be THAT kind of site, but with my mentioning of the Snuggie in "QR Codes Will Rule The World" I thought this wonderful packaging design warranted publishing.

High Contrast Self-Portrait Painting

The overall painting is a bit flat and unimpressive, however this was more of an experiment with high contrasting warm tones and layered textures within the dry blood.

The Power of Gestalt and Papa Smurf

Do you see Papa Smurf or an oddly-shaped magical chalice?

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Web Page

My associated web page is currently under construction. Look for it to launch Spring 2011!

Playin' With Clay

Playin' With Clay Business Cards

Business Plan 1

I will reserve the domain names of as many websites as I can beginning with the letter "i" followed by a technical word...

Any suggestions? I already checked into the following without any success… // // // // // //

QR Codes Will Rule The World!

I hope the QR code craze lasts longer than my fascination with Snuggies. While my blue robe blanket is gathering dust in the closet, my QR code is freshly stamped on my every personal belonging. They aren't going anywhere. Right? I anticipate my lifeless body's toe tag will be printed with a matrix of tiny black squares within a square, otherwise known as the Quick Response code. I foresee the coroner scanning it to obtain my personal information, and may even come across my blog.

I figured I would make it even easier by tattooing it on my forehead. After all, isn’t that what most companies and individuals are currently doing? I am seeing the hectic codes appearing on company vehicles, Facebook profiles, retail products and real estate riders among many others. They are free and accessible. QR Code generator websites are easy enough to use to make the non-tech folk look like technical geniuses.

Do I blame them? Not at all. I have a permanent reminder of this fad inked on my face. Please join me! In the future, people will neither have to look at or talk to you. All they’ll have to do is use their smartphone to scan the modern barcode beneath your hairline.

Unfortunately, my phone is too prehistoric to use this technology. Let’s just hope this technology doesn’t become too prehistoric before I upgrade to an iPhone 7.