Thursday, April 30, 2009

13

I was trying to explain my design process to someone today, specifically my logo design process, and mentioned that it usually took about 13 ideas before I got to a good one. Tonight I hit #13 and could feel that something was close. #15 was the breakthrough. Sometimes when in a situation where I can't seem to get the right solution it's helpful to put down the bad ones on paper and figure out why they DON'T work. I find if I don't, those ideas sit in the back of my head and get in the way.

The logo is far from done, but now at least I have a direction.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

What is that? #01 - ANSWER

Nice guess Starlette! It's a disintigrating cattail from the swampy area beside Dow's Lake. Here's another shot of it.

Cattail close-up

Monday, April 27, 2009

Comments

So it seems that somehow my blog has only been allowing registered users to post comments. Not sure why. I've fixed that an now anyone can comment. Sorry about that.

What is that? #01

The following is a photo I took today. Let's see who can identify what it is first. Leave your guesses in the comment section at the bottom of the post.

What is that? #01

Stock 2

Despite the previously mentioned incident, I actually got some things done today. I sketched out a few thumbnails for a logo I'm working on, and took about 80 new photos. Here are a few.

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Steps to enjoying a sunny Monday afternoon

1. Apply sunscreen. CHECK

2. Pack a) HOW magazine design annual b) Sketch pad and pencil c) Gatorade d) A towel. CHECK

3. Go to Dow's Lake. CHECK

4. Find a sunny patch of grass by the water. CHECK

5. Play Clem Snide on your ipod. CHECK

6. Lay down your towel. CHECK

7. Lie in the sun and relax. CHECK

8. Check for dog crap BEFORE you lay the towel down...

Surprise!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Stock

Occasionally I like to go out for a day and take photos to add to my collection of "Images to use in designs someday." Thursday and Friday of this week I took about 150. They are usually either of textures, shapes, or cool looking bits and pieces of whatever. They are also usually pretty close up. It's always nice to have random photos that you can draw inspiration from or to use in part of a design.

Here are a few from the past few days.

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Sunday, April 19, 2009

2nd Verse, Same as the First!

Silk screen attempt 2

So it seems my first failure in silk screening also set me up for my second. I think I screwed up my screen a little more than I thought with that crappy ink. They came out pretty bad.

So I'll be starting this process all over again, from the start.

In the mean-time, I'll be printing cards the, I was about to say "Old-fashioned way" but it's not at all, "normal way". On my printer.

I'll keep you posted about round three. Which will not be attempted tomorrow. Tomorrow will be a silk screen free day.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Adventures in silk screening

Good cards

When silk screening for the first time, you may hear a voice in the back of your head saying:

"Hmm, this white ink that I bought 4 years ago looks really thick and a bit dried out. Oh it'll probably be ok. I've got half a jar left, I may as well use up what I have left before going all the way to Bank St. to buy a new one. It should work fine."

If so, that voice is WRONG!

Bad cards

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Graphic Design Shopping

Silk Screening Equipment

So, for the past two days I've been running around trying to get supplies for projects and portfolios. Both days have been beautiful outside, both days I was overdressed. Carrying bags full of stuff, a jacket and a sweatshirt gets tiring after a while.

I managed to pick up a silk screening kit, ink jet transparency sheets, nice black cardstock, a 150w clear bulb, and some high quality 11x17 ink jet paper since the other sheets i bought just aren't good enough. Anyone need 500 sheets of 11x17 medium quality paper?

Spending money when unemployed is weird. I also came very close to buying an electric drum kit today, but decided if I did, it'd be harder to get this design stuff done. It was sweet though.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easy Star's Lonely Hearts Dub Band

Ok. This has nothing to do with design, other than I've been listening it while I've been working, but I had to share it. It's a Reggae cover of the whole "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" album. Ya, that's right.

Easy Star's Lonely Hearts Dub Band

P.S. The site is in Dutch (Maybe?) so don't expect to understand much. Unless you are Dutch, and in that case, I have many questions.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Progress is good

So today went a little better than yesterday. I decided to focus on more important easier things, and leave the complicated and unnecessary ones for later. That way I'll at least have something to show. It's nowhere near done, but feel free to have a look, and let me know if you find any bugs. I haven't browser tested the new pages or recent work, so there may be some. If anyone has Internet Explorer 6, I'd love to hear how it looks.

www.mikeshortdesign.com

Have you ever...

... spent 10 hours working on one thing because you've "already put so much time into it and won't be defeated by it" only to find you've wasted an entire day on something that you still can't figure out and have nothing to show for it?

No?

Ya, me neither.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Browser Testing

After hours of coding clean, semantic, and accessible html and css, running browser tests can make you want to cry. While my coding is getting better everyday, I'm still figuring out each browser's bugs and differences. What looks perfect in Firefox can just explode in Internet Explorer. Things that line up perfectly in Safari can be destroyed by Opera. I still hold onto the hope that one day all browsers will adopt the same standards. Until then browser testing will always be a headache.

That being said, I am making progress on my portfolio website, and will be working on it for the rest of today.

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p.s. It's snowing?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Young Doctors In Love

So, the appartment is still not clean. Anyone see that one coming? (Raises hand) Well at least I managed to accomplish a few things yesterday anyway.

The '94s had a very successful band practice, I visited my new niece, met some friends at Paddy Bolands, and did some design work for my sister's band "Young Doctors In Love."

Here are a few sketches and rough mockups of some of the ideas I had yesterday.

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Friday, April 3, 2009

Let's try this again

I've had blogs in the past, but eventually grew tired of them and just stopped. I'm going to give this another try.

Hopefully this will turn into a blog about me as a graphic designer, and motivate me to learn, grow, express, and design. Let's see how that goes.

Some of you may be asking yourself, "for a designer this generic blog template is pretty boring" and you are correct. I chose to start off with no design at all, that way I'll have something to write about as I design it :)

I currently find myself out of work, and haven't been in this position... ever? Well not without it being my own choice.

I attended an open house/job fair two nights ago, but was fairly unprepared due to it being the day after I lost my job. I thought it better that I go with what I had, at least to get me back into the habit of applying. I had to buy a new printer the night before as my old one decided to start printing black lines through everything. Thinking that I probably couldn't get away with claiming that as my personal design trademark, I thought it best to just scrap it. Anyone want a used printer capable of interpretive design? I promise it won't become self-aware and form an army of machines set on the obliteration of all humans. Well I'm pretty sure it won't.

I'm posting this blog as I'm procrastinating the daunting job of cleaning my apartment, trying to make myself believe that I'm not procrastinating, but multi-tasking. Anyone believe that?

Wow I have a lot of portfolios. I've just moved most of them into storage as they were all under my bed catching dust. I counted 7 today, but I may be forgetting some. Anybody need a slightly dusty portfolio? I promise this one DEFINITELY won't become self-aware and form an army of portfolios set on the obliteration of all humans. That would be just silly. And you are silly for even thinking it.