In Response: Chp. 2+3 of The Layout Book

In relation to Project Three I will essentially be working the design from the bottom up. I will be using landscape paintings that are referred to in the writing I am designing for in the second brief.

This includes painters of the Hudson River School, Frederic Edwin Church (primarily), John Frederick Kensett, and Sanford Robinson Gifford.

After these readings I will try and keep it simple due to time restraints and to emphasize the focus on the reading. The body copy will literally be framed like a piece of artwork "hung" in the space of the artwork treated as a real space.

In Response: Contemporary Design

While searching for Russian Constructivist Posters on the web I immediately ran into a post on Tom Whalen's work. This guy's been really making an impression on the pop culture-oriented poster community. Also forwarded to in the post was another post on Eric Tan.

Process: Culture Counts Poster Entry


String figures have been used across all cultures to express ideas and concepts. A ring of multi-colored strings tied together represents the diversity of cultures. The hands work in cooperation by mimicking the binding knots and overall reinforcing the circle. This is a sign of unity and wholeness.

The main image derives itself from another concept. Below it is a series of hands that illustrate the actions necessary to develop cultural relationships. At the end is a looping symbol that suggests repetition. It is a reminder that this dialogue must be continued in order to maintain mutual understanding.

In Response: Matthew Lyons

From a recent post on ISO50 about Matthew Lyons.

The process post about Matthew's development of this specific image, The Snide of a Scoundrel Man from his project Faux Film Stills, shares with us some of the choices he had to make and why. This involves composition, body language, and narrative. I think it definitely expresses a jerky awkwardness because of the deliberate use of straight edged lines and angles. This works with his aim to create an eerie environment. I've noticed in this illustration and in a few others, Matthew makes use of a strikingly simple horizontal line making everything seem to connect instantly.

Looking at other work of his, this image creates a relationship between what's in the hole of the 'O' and a face hole 'O'. This image has a nice clean message in the flat darkness and as you move to the right we see an experience that's still fresh in any heavy computer user's memory. Some of us lucky ones still get to deal with this every once in a while.

Looking back at your assignment I think I may have misread what your intentions were. Were we supposed to analyze the page layout of some article?

In Response: Anatomy of Design Pt.2

As a continuation of design experiments in color since the 60's, Art Nouveau was revisited heavily and played upon by artist/designers like Rick Griffin, Alton Kelley, and Wes Wilson. Alphonse Mucha is a key figure for popular use of Art Nouveau stylings that typically include women. Currently, John Baizley has become more well known for his work that further pushes this influence by illustrating deathly or non-traditionally beautiful subjects in this style.

In Response: Anatomy of Design Pt.1

The second article on Cyan's poster talks about variable colorways. Variation in prints immediately applies value judgements on the design/artwork itself. It's function to direct a message to viewer has not changed it's objective, but how it is received is changed ever so slightly. This is a practice in printmaking when a certain print has a smaller "special" edition giving it more value compared to the more standard edition that is widely available.

I continue to see designers working with "lost" or "low" art/illustration/design/photographs out of context and sometimes recontextualizing it. Some times for better or for worse. Commercial imagery has been a great interest for source work since the time of pop art. Some random good and bad examples: 1 2 3 4 5 6

In Response: Contemporary Graphic Design of Iran

The article's author identifies many designers in Iran as culturally influenced. However, education in design has brought in many western influences and tendencies. This seems to add to the lack of direct communication and understanding of the target audience.

I do like the point on technological advances during the last half century. It reveals some importance on manual skill driving the design early on and the transformation towards interchangeable graphics quickly and cleanly. The comment, "meaning and communication is sacrificed in favor of aesthetic play," really serves as a reminder to keep intention in mind.

I think the article is a little hard to follow. It is encompasses a lot of topics in such generality. Pointing out positive and negative design issues that are constantly discussed in all graphic design communities. A study in the history of Iranian design may put things into a more solid perspective.

In Response: Color Theory

Color theory is a very complex way to describe the ways we use color. In my opinion it is a bit subjective when talking about it in generality. However, when color is put into practice and used for some specific purpose it would be proper to think of color more objectively.

Munsell's work in defining color by hue, value, and saturation really connected with me and made sense when I first learned about his work. I feel comfort in defined perceptually uniform colors.

This is a fun Munsell-based hue test.

In Response: The Astonish Me Problem

This is a great collection and observation of illusions. Optical effects have the great ability to really get observers to interact with what they're presented. I would agree though that successful and desired effects were stated in, "Devices and Illusions only really work when their use is entirely justified and supports the central premise of a campaign."

There are a lot of great examples used in this article. I've even looked at "See Saw" (the UMD library has this) and saw lots of additional techniques that could be employed. These are things to keep in mind when you want to quickly gain a viewers interest.


During the final semester of my third year it seems like I've fallen behind on my graphic design classes, but I'm glad to take them on. I've spent a good portion of my time focusing on my second major in studio art. This Graphic Design course should put me in practice and develop my skills as an artist/designer. I hope some of our assignments will take advantage of my interests in poster art and screen printing. Maybe I'll expand on what's possible with screen printing.

Heads up on some house shows coming up. Both of which I've done artwork for and screen printing.

First, In Defence w/ Dios Mio, Bring That Shit, and Indulge Saturday, January 23 @ The Banana Hammock 1113 E 4th St.


Second, Total Fucking Blood w/ The Keep Aways, and Hard Feelings Friday, January 29 @ The Maxipad (my place) 518 N 6th Ave E


You can follow my personal work on my Blogger blog.