Friday, August 14, 2009

How to find an ID job [via-core77]

A useful, simple and insightful article on applying for a job....I think I would also add the necessity of networking though since more often than not jobs come from who you know in design fields.

original article:

As an employer we have been frustrated with the poor applications that we have received recently. Here are some of the most major errors we're seeing:

1.Poor grammar, lack of capitalization, typos, poor spelling, and no indication of which job they are applying to. Even if English is your second language, use spell check and grammar check! Ask friends to look things over. Craftsmanship is key.

2.Individual jpgs sent as samples. There is no way we are opening 10 attachments, period. Sorry. You've been rejected. Next!

3.Calling when the ad says no calls - this is a variation of the less common but more annoying version of the, "I'm just stopping by, can you see me now?"

4.No sketches or background material in your portfolio.

5.Not following pretty basic instructions in job wanted ad on how to apply

Here are the ingredients to a great application: Cover letter, Resume, and Samples
Cover Letter - research the company and write a personalized letter. This can be the email that you attach your resume and samples to. Please tell me in this letter which job you are applying to - DUH! I don't care why you want to move to my city (I don't care that your girlfriend live here) but I do care about why you think you are right for my company.

Resume: Please keep this to one page unless you have tons of experience. Sponsored studios don't count as experience, sorry. Include a graduation date. My last post was for a true junior designer. I had juniors trying to appear as if they had 3 or more years of experience. I disqualified those people. Too bad. Be honest.

Samples could be a teaser or a complete portfolio:

Teaser: 1 project with support work or 3-4 projects in final form

Complete portfolio: Should consist of 3-4 projects (minimum 3) from start to finish. You should document your thinking and decision making process from start to finish. We are looking for how much exploration and research you did, mechanical ability, aesthetics, and sensitivity to the user. We want to see the bad ideas you rejected as well as the really crazy ideas your instructor thought were too blue sky. We also want to see your mock ups. We are looking for your visual communication skills - this means sketching. If you can't sketch, it's still better to include your thinking than to not include it.

Portfolio Advice From Luciano Bove:

Concept Art Portfolio Advice from Feng Zhu:

Design Sessions Portfolio Advice:

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Creative Strategies Icons + Micro Projects

Intro: This is a sample of work from Creative Strategies, one of the best courses at accd. The goal of the class is of course learning to be more creative and developing better creative processes to solve problems. Each week we are given a creative/ design challenge and we then have one week to solve it as creatively as possible.

Creative Strategy Icons: I created these to help keep track of my own mental processes and also to quickly communicate to an audience how i was thinking at a certain phase in the design process. The strategies are fairly loose so actually there are infinite variations within these themes for creativity.

Seven Day Journal: The task was to create a journal with the theme "What is left of the Day?" The creative strategy i used in this case was problem framing to redefine what it meant to experience a day. For me one day was a beginning and an end and this is how i see the completion of a sketch book. So one day for my journal is one completed sketchbook.

Copic Sketch Chess Set: This challenge involved using repurposed or recycled materials. One of my other accd nicknames besides "Stephensanity" is "The Recycler." This is because you will often find me during crunch times digging through trash or repurposing materials to create last minute projects that turn out relatively well. This is one of those cases. Time was less than three hours to concept and final execution.

LEGO Futurist Farm Track-Tor: Final challenge was to create your own strategy and project. I've been wanting to do something with LEGO for a long time so i finally did for this project. My self project was to create and model my own genre of LEGO. I called my strategy "let GO" applied to "LEGO." "LetGo" means trusting all your training and life expierience to create something that is orginal and good. We train as designers to be good so trust your skills, draw from your unique life experiences and have faith that whatever you make will be unique because your life is unique. And it will be good because you've been trained well and have all that practice under your belt.

note to self: do some sketches and put LEGO project into book..integrate LEGO into design process

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Paintings II

Intro: All of these paintings were done for the inspiration/passion/fine art section of my portfolio during 6th semester Viscom with John Krysteski.
They were created in Corel painter X using mostly the palette knife brush. The process of searching through automotive design history, seeing and experiencing all the great designs from the past and adding my own interpretation was one of the most enjoyable things for me. I think this series of classic paintings gave me a chance to go back and visit my roots from my old oil painting days. I used the same process i would as if i were doing a landscape. It's scary, with that kind of traditional painting process, i had to have faith in the process of loose to tight, general to specific. All of these paintings look like they are not working until the final thirty minutes when i tighten everything up and add the final touches that bring it all together.

M1 Allnight - 07/09
Process+Context: This is definitely my favorite painting of the classics' series. I worked on it for 10 hours straight from 8pm to 6am the next morning (Hence the title "M1 Allnight"). During that time i didn't care about anything else except painting this piece. I was focused and didn't worry about any of the other work i had to do that night. I had the feeling that artists sometimes get of being "in the zone" and i knew it would be one of my best. A lot of the time went into arranging the composition and wrestling with the color theory. I was inspired by the strength of the iconic BMW motorsports racing stripes and for some reason just really wanted to do a dramatic painting of this iconic motor vehicle. When i'm older i think i'll look back at this one and i think i'll still like it regardless of what anyone else says.

Pininfarina P5 Saturday Post - 08.09
I had this car in mind for a classic painting for a few weeks before i got to it. It was one of the last ones i did. Looking at my other paintings and the energetic/ heavy brush work style i used in them didn't seem to fit this one. With most of the other paintings my autopilot style is high energy and drama. For this one it felt like the mood should be something like the flavor of vanilla - smooth and comforting. Almost like a Norman Rockwell painting as opposed to a Sargent (both of whom i find much inspiration in painting).

Countach Noir - 08.09
Another scary painting. Scary for me cause it didn't look like it was gonna be working till the last fifteen minutes and scary in tone in general. The Countach is one of the few iconic autos that have an even more iconic aerial view. I imagined this being driven in some Italian Crime Noir film, by the hero or the villain escaping through the night chasing someone or being chased by something unknown.

Porsche Legacy - 08/09
This was originally just one part of a larger painting dealing with all the iconic vehicles in the Porsche marque's history. After spending two hours on the portrait of Ferdinand Porsche i realized it was not going to be economical time wise and decided to save that painting for a later date. I usually paint the car as the focal point of the painting, but in this case i wanted to try something different and left the car loose and made the portrait the focal point. It was good to practice my portrait painting skills that i haven't used in three years.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Paintings I

Intro: This series of paintings are the first paintings i did for my inspiration/passion/fine art section of my portfolio. They were done in 6th semester Viscom with John Krysteski. Software used was Corel Painter X using the palette knife brush.

Paulo's Ferrari - 07.09
The Ferrari Modulo created by Paulo Martin while at Pininfarina is one of the cars that moves me most deeply in terms of automotive design. Some critics argue that its not functional, has a horrible turning radius, etc...but i think they miss the point of this vehicle. This design is about hopes and dreams, vision, and inspiration. Ultimately this leads to an excellent brand image boost for Ferrari and Pininfarina at the time. I describe the form language of this design as "Cosmic Geometry," form language that represents the hopes and dreams of the 70's era in terms of advaced space technology, and the dreams of taking mankind further through space exploration. Someday with design i want to do something equally inspiring, that will uplift the people and represent their hopes and dreams in the current or future age.
In terms of painting, i used a horizontal composition to give it a narrative impression. As if reading the image from the left to right or right to left. The top right portion looks like a rear view but it is actually a front of the car with the red stripe bleeding through. Some parts are exaggerated to increase the sense of the dominant profile.

Dino Rossa - 06.09
This interior piece was a struggle from the beginning to end. It was hard to compose and hard to paint and still not sure if it really is finished. There was a sliver of the cars exterior red showing through because of the A-pillar. I decided to spread this out as an accent and used it in the corners to add more passion with the color and direct your eye back into the composition.

1972 Citroen Camargue by Bertone - 06.09
This was one of those pieces that seemed to have a life of its own. It just came together by itself. I picked some strange colors and they just worked on the first try which almost never happens. What really helps this painting is the dramatic perspective and glaring highlight on the hood and then repeated as an accent in the glass highlight. It makes a nice rhythm of triangles which is an unconscious subtle impression of the Citroen double chevron logo. Now that i've pointed it out i can't stop staring at it.

Checkmate - 05.09
If not for this painting turning out relatively well i would not have been able to make the others. My semi success wth this first one gave me confidence to tackle the later ones. Although it might not be one of my best in terms of technique it is one of my favorites for what it represents. A first success.
This painting also has a hidden story. The car itself is not even a real car. It is based on a slot racer model.

Stratos Zero - 08.09

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Process: Concept Help Poster

I'm working as an adviser for the concept help workshop this term with Frido. The goal is to document and streamline my own concept development process as well as teach others how to make their concepts better and become better at generating good concepts overall.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Concept Notes

Preparing for the workshop, these are the questions i have: and my current thoughts

How do you develop a concept? - To develop a concept same as developing anything, process + time. Good concept meets the project goals, starting with strong project goals leads to a strong concept.

What makes a good concept? - still working on this answer. addresses the design brief, does more with less, unique, moral, redefine paradigms, solves problems, addresses cultural and societal values, contextual, basically a strong story...what story you want to tell and why you want to tell it? Is it a story we've heard already? There is value in originality, inventiveness, entrepreneurship, value innovation, decrease cost while increasing value to the user or client.

Why is it important? - Excellent design consists of two sides of the same coin, excellent content and excellent form. Another way to say this is good ideas and good communication of these ideas. Content is the message. Form is the expression of that message. Being strong in form or craft is only one side of the coin, excellent content is even more important. There are different philosophies regarding content and form. I usually default to Form as the expression of Content. I have also heard Content is form. Form is content.
Example GINA light from DesignworksBMW. GINA philosophy is the content, the message, the idea. The expression of this message, the form, is the changing fabrics, surfacing, alternate architecture, the physicality. Another example, from music, there is song and then there is the voice that sings the song, the song is the message, the singng is how that message is conveyed. Excellent music has excellent song or message and an excellent musician who can express the song through their voice or instrument. Same with writing. Good book has strong story and good writing to go with it.

Concept process? - The design process can also be applied to the concept development process. When developing a concept use the same process of research, evaluation, ideations, refinements, and final proposal. The specifics of process are constantly changing within this framework. Creativity applied to concept.

Time? - It takes time to develop anything. The idea of development implies a time characteristic.

05/21/09 Idea Quotes

“Everything begins with an idea.” Earl Nightingale

“An idea that is developed and put into action is more important than an idea that exists only as an idea.” Hindu Prince Gautama Siddharta, the founder of Buddhism, 563-483 B.C.

“A single idea / the sudden flash of a thought / may be worth a million dollars.” Robert Collier

“A pile of rocks ceases to be a rock when somebody contemplates it with the idea of a cathedral in mind.” Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world, and that is an idea whose time has come.” Victor Hugo

“You have to have an idea of what you are going to do, but it should be a vague idea.” Pablo Picasso

"The way to get good ideas is to get lots of ideas, and throw the bad ones away." Linus Pauling

Define the problem, identify the constraints, understand the problem, identify the project goals, self, audience, identify the audience. knowing the audience helps to define the goals, defining the goals helps to arrive at solutions.

Research, explore, gather information relevant to your now defined problem.
Propose solutions. Refine solutions. Choose better solutions and develop further.

Concept definitions:
is a cognitive unit of meaning— an abstract idea or a mental symbol sometimes defined as a "unit of knowledge," built from other units which act as a concept's characteristics. A concept is typically associated with a corresponding representation in a language or symbology such as a word. (wikipedia)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Interior 4

Team Project: Stephensanity +T. Armstrong
Create a small interior that is spacious, stylish & smart.