Did you know that traffic signals are controlled through the internet? It makes sense when you think about it but my internet goes down several times a year and that couldn't be good for traffic signals.
"I o T" is an acronym for "The Internet of Things". Earlier this year I created a fun assignment for Network World and Art Director Stephen Sauer on the topic of Cloud Computing but 4 months later the Cloud has become so 2013. The new thing in Networking is bringing all and every thing that we know to the internet. As a service, supplier or manufacturer it makes sense and we as artists it makes a bunch more sense so lets get ready for smart everything from vending machines to parking spots and all details between. Stephen and I agreed that we needed to solve the cover first and use that image as a jumping off platform for the spread. Thank you, Stephen for the fun.
First round of cover sketches to get us started and boom, nothing approved. I tell this scenario all of the time to my illustration students, be prepared to have your design work received for naught and when that happens you better come back smiling and swinging!
Second round of cover designs with number 2 the winner. The only change was to include a few tablets.
Cover final. Acrylic on board. 15" x 20". I moved the bottom 2 computers over to the right after the painting was finished in Photoshop to accommodate for the lost real estate due to the mailing label.
The Cover in context.
Cover detail. After I had painted the vending machine I realized that the Coke bottles were empty, not a good idea for the real deal but for art, no problem.
Stephen and I both loved the surfing robot so it was a natural fit to extend the cover concept to the spread.
Collecting early American stamps as a kid. I scanned this stamp at 2400 dpi. And I can just keep staring at it, it gives me almost as much visual pleasure as a Picasso.
Inspired by Yuko Shimizu here are my "15 influences, that stick with you, FOREVER." This was a fun exercise and now that I look at my list, all of my favorites look pretty much the same.
Comic Books, I bought most of them for the covers.
Collecting old photography during my youth at antique shops.
Frank Frazetta. When I was in art school he wasn't cool so I never told anybody that I copied and airbrushed a couple dozen of his pictures on vans and low riders during the late 70's as a kid in Southern California. Never liked, Boris Vallejo.
Another Green World. Brian Eno. Produced by Eno and Rhett Davies, Island Records 1975. Loved all of his solo albums and his work with, Roxy Music, David Bowie and especially Robert Fripp.
Maurits Cornelis Escher, usually referred to as M. C. Escher, was a Dutch graphic artist. He is known for his often mathematically inspired woodcuts, lithographs, and mezzotints. These feature impossible constructions, explorations of infinity, architecture, and tessellations. He is still a favorite.
David Hockney. Pearblossom Hwy, 11 - 18th April 1986. Chromogenic prints mounted on paper honeycomb panel (Looked to me like a cheap version of foamcore). I saw this piece at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. It blew me away, although it seemed shabbily collaged but the overall impact inspired me to the point of driving out to this location where Pearblossom Hwy intersects Mt Emma Road in a lame attempt to recreate the scene. When I got there the corner was so boring and non photogenic that I shot the Joshua Tree below and some power lines and got back into my car and drove home 4 hours to Temecula Ca.
Mt Emma Road. photo etching. Inspired by David Hockney and early photography I experimented with this process for maybe a year but the chemicals were so toxic that I gave it up.
Pablo Picasso. Blind Minotaur Led by a Girl through the Night, from the Vollard Suite, 1934. Still one of my all time favorite works of art.
José Luis Cuevas is a Mexican artist and was one of the first to challenge the then dominant Mexican muralism movement as a prominent member of the Generación de la Ruptura (Breakaway Generation).
Sir Stanley Spencer was an English painter. Much of his work depicts Biblical scenes, from miracles to Crucifixion, happening not in the Holy Land but in the small Thames-side village where he was born and spent most of his life. His life was very interesting.
Max Beckmann. The Night. 1918-19
Jose Clemente Orozco. Palacio de Bellas Artes: Mural "Catarsis" ( 1934 ) Mexico City.
Auguste Rodin. His watercolors, if you haven't seen them, check them out. You will see a lot of influence of this work in contemporary painting.
Henry Moore paintings.
Katsushika Hokusai, ukiyo-e painter and printmaker of the Edo period. His work looks like it could have been done yesterday.
Kiki Smith. "Wolf Girl," 1999. Love, love, love anything and everything that she does.
This is a piece appearing in today's Wall Street Journal. This story describes the "CFO Academy". A dwindling few large corporations like GE and Honeywell have for decades been the go-to places to poach financial talent. With fewer old-guard academies investing heavily in their financial talent companies are turning to new CFO incubators like Amazon and EBay. This was a fun job for a company that I haven't worked for in years so getting the call was both a surprise and a pleasure. Big thanks to Daniel Smith and John Nichols for the assignment.
What is technology? It is everything and nothing at the same time. It sits back waiting to be used and when you put it into gear, it has the power to take you anywhere and everywhere. It's end products form our business and financial world but the software itself when not engaged is hollow and lifeless and trying to depict this dichotomy and a programs usage through graphics has been a fun but artistic challenge.
Here is some of my new work for the education and technology company, Lynda.com. I have had the privilege of being one of the lead cover and packaging designers for the last 5 years. My specialty has been business and programing software but once in a while I'll get to design some graphics software titles which is a lot of fun. Here is the entire Microsoft Office Suite for 2013.
Microsoft PowerPoint 2013
Microsoft Excel 2013
Microsoft OneNote 2013
Microsoft Access 2013
Microsoft Word 2013
Microsoft Outlook 2013
Microsoft Project 2013
Microsoft SharePoint 2013
What is an Operating System? It is everything and nothing at the same time. It sits back waiting to be used and when you put it into gear, it has the power to take you anywhere and everywhere within your local hard drive. I have also had the pleasure of designing some of the later Mac OSX video packaging.
Mac OS X Lion
Mac OS X Snow Leopard
Mac OS X Lion
Mac OS X Lion for Servers
Mac OS X Mountain Lion
Working for the largest technology driven education company in the world I have an ironic confession, I use Photoshop 3 to render my pieces, okay, I've said it. I design and assemble my work in CS but the simple elegance of PS 3 works perfect for my rendering style. I have tried over and over to migrate to CS but CS with it's over compensation and control adds an extra keystroke or two to every task that I complete so in a piece that may require several thousand Keystrokes it starts adding up and I just can't afford or have the patience for the extra time. Below are some screen shots of how I render my objects.
Assembling EverNote for Windows
Assembling EverNote for Mac
Adding the hands to PowerPoint
Every year Lynda.com produces something fun to give to their employees during the holidays. A few years ago they created the handsome Art of Lynda.com book designed by the fabulous Stefan G. Bucher. For 2012 they commissioned Rickshaw Bagworks in San Francisco to create 1,000 unique bags with custom illustrations printed across the front flap. Here are some samples of the bags including some John Hersey illustrations.
Happy Lynda.com employee's. Design by Heather Stallings. All photographs courtesy of Bruce Heavin
Today, after I had made this post I thought, "I really need to produce something tangible today". One of my galleries has requested more "Dragonflies" and "Infinity Couples" so this was a perfect starting point and I didn't have to think which is a good thing sometimes. I sketched out a few designs and decided on a direction. I am pretty happy with this new Monotype that I made this afternoon.
A few sketches. I come up with new pieces by composing on tracing paper over printouts of earlier work. I threw out the easy sell of an, "Infinity Couple" and tried something a bit new.
Untitled | Monotype | 12"x15" image | 2013
This week I was able to squeeze in enough time to finish the art requests for more "Dragonflies" and "Infinity Couples". Here they are below.