Before the Cock Crows!

CockCrows

I “missed” the dropping of the ball in January. Well, I didn’t miss it exactly, I just didn’t get done all that I had intended by that moment in time.

Common amongst illustrators is the theme that the work is done when the deadline is up. Obviously we work with experience within a certain timeframe that has been imposed uno us but when there is no deadline when is the other work done. Does anyone ever get it all done, really?

Maybe, but not me. At least not the list of personal projects that I hold close to my heart but tend to put aside for commissions, commitments, and complications—of which there has always been a time consuming supply, sometimes in the wrong proportions, but time consuming none the less. Clients and children hold top shelf in the hierarchy of the day and whatever time is left over after making sure those two will have their needs met tomorrow is up for grabs by the complications of the day. After that comes the desires. The desires don’t get the attention they so duly deserve.

Intentions are a funny thing. If the old adage is true I should have moved on and forgotten about my list of unfinished business. But as I cheekily started this three weeks ago in hopes of wishing everyone a Happy Chinese New Year and watched my window fade on that “joke” I realized February is coming to a close and, well, I should just give up. To which I said to myself…

NEVER!

It’s not that any of this is so pressing or earth shattering but for the first time in a long while the triple-C agenda left a little room for me in 2016. So I did what anyone would do and got to work! I know, it doesn’t make sense but I seldom do when left on my own and I figured why start trying now, it would just confuse everybody. Then this morning I read an AIGA article about Paula Scher and at the heart of it was the idea of refilling the well. That was 2016 for me and with that is the virtue of sharing, in various forms. So before February ends I promised myself I would post a few of the projects from last year that started a little shake up in the weekly routine. The rest will follow over the coming days.

Silence is Broken
And I don’t have to pay for it, you do. It seems rather sad to me that I didn’t post a single thing in all of 2015. By the time I take it all in and settle down from an assignment or a project I have moved on in my head. A big set of baggage is forever being dragged behind me but I don’t necessarily want to go back to deal with any of it, just be ready for what is next. As 2015 came to an end quietly I knew the year to come would be a little different and I would be opening up some old suitcases.

Social What?
I have long shunned anything related to communicating with my phone or computer other than email. It makes me seem so much older than I really am, but it is just one more—make that several more—items to worry about on an already overloaded list of priorities (See the triple-C agenda above). That said I was mocked by my friend JJ (@jaybfly) this year as I gave Instagram a proper try by posting drawings, illustrations, and some photography @legendofthehead, and I quote, “I love that you are so active on Instagram but avoid Facebook and Twitter like the plague.” Baby steps. I haven’t been vaccinated for Facebook yet.

New Studio Space
As things have been getting tight in my day-to-day studio I had the opportunity to take on some additional space nearby that provides me with access to a great photography studio and proximity to peers in the film and video industry that I spent the better part of 2016 reacquainting myself with. More on that in future posts.

ASICS Tiger Logo
Since working on his book in 2013, Teaching Type to Talk, I have had the privilege to continue designing with Alan Peckolick. For those not familiar with him and his work, buy the book. Not the most subtle of pushes I know, but if you like type it is worth every penny. Alan came up under Herb Lubalin (after turning down Saul Bass) and was Lubalin’s last partner before his mentors’ death. He has had a long and storied career, in which he has designed hundreds of logos for clients (among countless other things). One of those clients was ASICS, for which he and Lubalin designed the logo that they have been using for 40 years. Last year the company called him to redesign a logo for their ASICS Tiger brand. I had the honor of working on it with him (all my ideas were killed) over the course of a few months.  It was great to see it finally being used (link here).

Working on a Picasso Book
This is a bit of a stretch but it has some back story. A decade ago I reluctantly visited Paris for the first time. Sadly the only time, but one day. Spending three weeks in France was not on the agenda at that point in my life, bucket list or any other to-do list. But I went. To draw and study, and later meander. Never before have I visited a city that I would in fact drop my life for and move to given the opportunity. It was beautiful, friendly, and historic, I can’t say enough about it. The people, the parks, the food—and then there were the museums.  The Louvre, The Rodin Museum and most importantly the Picasso Museum. Picasso was at the top of my list long before this trip but he solidified his position the first day I spent in the museum. I could go on about the endless work and the infinite inspiration, but that is a post about Picasso for another time, and for the rest of my days. I would forego it all for the 3 or 4 videos that played on loop in one of the theaters. Mesmerized I sat there for hours watching work flash before my eyes that I would never see again. Last summer, nearly 10 years to the week I visited, I was called in by a  publisher that I have had the opportunity to work with for some time. They were finishing a Picasso book and the creative director/designer Frederico Farina was going out of the country for a bit and needed someone to look over pages in his stead. Picasso Picault/Picault Picasso is an amazing volume of work by Robert Picault on his relationship with Pablo Picasso, including pictures of the making of those movies I watched on a chance encounter in Musee de Picasso. The book was in good hands long before I stepped in to watch over it, but it was a nice moment in the course of the year to be brought back to Paris and reminded of the day I spent with Picasso.

 

 

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