Wednesday, January 28, 2009


i've finally gone through my full rotation of classes. drum roll please...

monday - graphic design II (9 am - 3 pm)
tuesday - civic humanism (9 am - noon)
wednesday - type II (4 pm - 10 pm)
thursday - architecture, art, and the open city (4 pm - 7 pm)
friday - concrete culture: city as text (9 pm - 3 pm)

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


i think this one marks my first official client project. even though the client is a good friend of mine (deb, an osi fellow i'm working with on a project in pimlico called art blocks) it was definitely the first time i experienced such a drawn out back and forth of comments and changes. and do have to admit, it showed me just how important it is to get the input of someone else and collaborate. the film strip bridge (and capitalizing) was all her idea... and in the end we've made a poster that does more than what i could have come up with independently on my first shot.

ps. i haven't quite gotten over the client hump yet... the photo above isn't exactly how it looks in final form. (i didn't add the names of the films yet, and switched some greys back to white) but it's what i am proud to put in my portfolio.

Monday, January 26, 2009


clearly this photo wasn't taken recently. yes, i am back in baltimore. no, it isn't that much warmer than the mitten. (exposed toes would be a bad idea.) but i finally had to send my camera in for repairs (could take two weeks... could take six...) so i'm reaching into the iphoto "archives." and recently i've been thinking about the cities/sidewalks/text combo.

one class i'm totally pumped (surprisingly) to be taking is called "concrete culture: the city as text." it's a studio/seminar sculpture class, and a much needed departure from graphic design all the time. over the course of the semester, concrete will become my new best friend. it seems foreign to be focusing so much on material. indesign and illustrator don't count. this is about science and experimenting. i have no idea what concrete is capable of, much less what i could capable of doing with it. one of the sculpture majors in the class asked how easily it could be made to erode. another responded by pointing out that we've been watching concrete erode our whole lives, without giving it second thought, when we walk on sidewalks.

our syllabus read: "concrete is the second most consumed substance on the planet after water." (mark kingwell, concrete reveries: consciousness and the city.)

part of the excitement for me about the class (besides it being another take on cities) is seeing how far i can push design when i take it out of the typical context of computers and throw it out into the streets. (stefan sagmeister style.) now i'm interested in words activating a space/stumbling across a message in the morning and how that changes the way you go throughout the day.

it should be an interesting one... we'll see. (as soon as i get my concrete gloves.)

Monday, January 19, 2009

civic humanism

i tore this page out of the november real simple
last time i was at the doctors office...

Friday, January 16, 2009

something to take note of around the time you realize museums aren't working anymore

i've had it in the back of my head for awhile now that museum curation could be really cool. it's usually the first thing i can think of when people ask me what i could do with an mfa. to other people, curation constitutes a career. and it sounds a lot better than "living in a cardboard box."

it dates back to a moment i had at the national gallery when i was a senior in high school. (and set on going to georgetown...) after that, seeing massive change at the mca in chicago did it for me. (nothing can match seeing huge vinyl letters on three story white wall like that.) and the ah-ha feeling followed me to mica, where i hated the walters art museum until, quite literally, the light bulb went off and i realized that even though i wasn't interested in the content, i could spend hours admiring how it was composed.

but it has been some time since i've seen something in a gallery that made me think differently again about how that space could be used. i got my aiga newsletter the other day (because i'm a fancy shmancy student member now!) and followed the link to their annual design exhibition. from what i could gather, every piece of the exhibition mounting is made to have a life after the show ends, with the new york organization publicolor. now that, i thought, is clever.

check out the exhibition slideshow for more pictures. (and while you're at it, check out the people who designed it, too.)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

the way i see it

i read this quote (upside down) standing in line at starbucks the other day. i liked it so much that i debated asking the barista for that cup in particular (it looked to be the tall size...) and thought about just taking a pen out of my purse and writing it down. i did neither. thankfully, it just happened to be the cup he grabbed.

Saturday, January 10, 2009


Thursday, January 8, 2009

follow the links

not waking up until 1 pm pretty much guarantees a lazy day. but that doesn't mean it has to be unproductive. (in fact, it just means you'll be even more productive at 1 am.) this was the sequence of events after i finally rolled out of bed:

1. make a cup of coffee.
2. mess around on my laptop.
3. find this mysterious pdf on my laptop.
4. although i have no clue where it came from, it reminds me of a new city in korea that i learned about on the science channel the other day.
5. google "the immature arts of city design" in an attempt to retrace my steps.
6. find the link to the pdf.
7. go to a uc berkeley link instead.
8. they have an institute of urban and regional development? intriguing.
9. the institute of urban and regional development has a center for community innovation?
10. stumble across a new pdf to download. "building arts, building community"
11. start reading about "informal arts districts" in oakland, california.
12. get curious about this thing called art murmur.
13. come to this lady's blog entry about it.
14. admire the "we're totally fucked" print on her refrigerator in a picture.
15. google the artist: ryan jacob smith
16. skim through his work.
17. find out that he is contributing to an exquisite corpse book project. i didn't know there was such a thing in the works.
18. look at the list of artists contributing. there's a lot.
19. alyson fox sounds familiar.
20. ah! alyson fox of design sponge fame.
21. go back to exquisite book website.
22. wonder... what's this about also?
23. oh my gosh. that website is amazing.
24. start looking at some of their work. get really overwhelmed.
25. realize that i never finished reading that first pdf. and i now have a billion tabs open.

edit: links are fixed. sorry. i should have noted that the 1pm productivity plan does not guarantee accuracy.

Monday, January 5, 2009


i think one of my biggest strengths is consistency. i know who i am (or at least i say so) and (for the most part) that permeates everything i do. but consistency is also one of my biggest weaknesses. it keeps me from admitting that when it really comes down to it, i have no idea who i am. that i am still a work in progress. it keeps me from doing things that would be out of character. or getting a hair cut. the scary thing is, though, once you commit to consistency, growth is stopped at the door.

when i first learned about on kawara's date paintings, it was exactly the kind of ambitious consistency that gets me excited. he has been making them since the 1960's, paiting on the canvas the date on which the painting was made according to the country he's in at the time. as far as i know, he's still going. byron kim has a similar idea, by supposedly painting the sky every sunday since 2001. but listening to byron kim lecture last year, i loved the break in that consistency when he admitted that sometimes he doesn't get around to painting until thursday or sometimes he just skips a week altogether. life is not predictable. so consistency will always be a lark.

still, i admire the people who can commit to running a mile every morning or who attempt to take a self portrait every day. these sort of undertakings usually surface with the start of a new year. and, more often than not, the act looses steam and just peters out. (like when i decided i would check out a book a week way back when.)

i'm going to start something for this year: one sentence. i found myself coming up with sentences that were at once complete (in their conception) and incomplete (in that they could lead to so much more.) i started a word document for them because i didn't know where else they might have a home. they were just sentences that i didn't feel needed justification. no supporting paragraph or photo. which is exactly the consistency i have cornered myself into with this blog. and that's ok. it works. but whenever i post something here i know there is something that is not being said. something that i am keeping to myself. putting just one sentence up gives me the chance to be a little less polished and a little more honest with a medium that, at least in my opinion, calls for surface level and impersonal. and i'll try to put a new sentence up every day. maybe it will help me feel less guilty when a week goes by where i have nothing to say on this blog. (and i know i've already missed four days... oh, well.)

hello, consistency. meet something that scares me a bit.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

my idea for 2009

“there is, as emerson says, some central idea or conception of yourself by which all the facts of your life are arranged and classified. change this central idea and you change the arrangement or classification of all the fact and circumstances of your life.” -wallace d. wattles

Friday, January 2, 2009

i think i've got it

i think i've settled on something for 2009. but this is still a beautiful website for finding words.