Each year West Coast Paper hosts a paper show, and this year’s theme was “Partnership”. Designers were paired with WCP’s various paper suppliers to create a poster on that mill’s stock in the theme. I worked with French Paper to create this playbill format of circus performers embodying the idea of partnership and working together.
The poster (left in the image above) is printed by Stevens IS on French Paper Pop-Tone “bubble gum” and will be available in a limited run of 100 to attendees of the WCP Paper Show. If you don’t know French Paper, well it’s a mill that has the most fun promotion materials with a very design heavy focus that complement their fantastic colors and various paper collections. The mill is family owned and has been since its inception 6 generations ago in 1871. French is also very focused on sustainability.
This project was drawn on the iPad Pro in Adobe Sketch. It’s the biggest project I’ve done so far in this way and while I do use technology to draw, I do it in the most antiquated way possible (using a program that only has 20 layers and fixed paper sizes). The fun part of using the iPad was that a pencil sketching effect could be achieved in a consistent way – on paper this would have required so much erasing.
Posca markers used in a Scoutbook. Basically testing out things in slow motion which could have been done 10x faster on a computer.
I grew up in Madras, surrounded the dusty high desert of Central Oregon. It was a small town when I lived there, and it’s still a small town, although the last two decades has seen the town acquire a few stoplights, a prison, and even a swimming pool and performing arts center.
However, Madras has never been a place that is about the typical amenities. It’s about the various cultures that live there and the natural environment that they share. Originally called “The Basin” from the valley it sits in, with craggy plateaus on all sides, this geographical feature was the visual center of designing a logo for the Jefferson County Cultural Coalition.
A modern style was used to render a logo and a seal. The main hero is the topography of the area that typifies Madras, which forms the “J” monogram for the county seat of Jefferson County and ties back to the previous logo’s monogram. A palette of dusty tans, golds and burnt brown keep things neutral so that any other internally created imagery won’t compete with the branding.
This project was pro-bono, for my mother and other board members who work to support the arts and heritage of the area with project grants.
Over the past two years I’ve worked on and off in “box format” – drawing on small wooden boxes. The first series was creating 69 “I think I need a New Heart” boxes for a Magnetic Fields tribute show. The second series were black and white lettering/illustration representations of magical or fantastical products (new heart, dream dust, and several more including my favorite “pocket rainbow”). In its newest iteration, I’m working on landscapes that use the box to emphasize the infinite space of these vistas. My first attempt is an “island in a box” – the box itself being the island – and I’m curious to see where this leads.
Here is a new lettering project for Tofurky, this time working on their packaging instead of general brand or advertising lettering. This project’s goal was to differentiate their artisan sausage in a way that felt true to the brand, but elevated the artisan product line into another visual space than the regular sausages.
Earlier in July I participated in the fifth annual Portland Monster Drawing Rally. The event is a smorgasbord of artists (75 in all) who donate their time to drawing live at the Portland Art Museum courtyard. As each piece of art is finished, it goes to the auction wall where bidding takes place by drawing straws (with a flat fee for the art).
Proceeds support free school and youth programs at the Museum. It’s a super family friendly event with a kids drawing area. In fact, most of my fun questions come from the 10-and-under crowd as they ogle the process in super-fast-forward speed (each artist gets 1 hour to complete their work).
I’ve done all five drawing rally events that PAM has organized, and each year is different. I’ve tried detailed micron pen illustrations 2 years in a row (hard to finish in an hour, and difficult if you sit next to another artist who is a “vigorous eraser”), black & white magical box contents, and paper pennants with fun lettered sayings.
The boxes seemed to be the most popular so I decided to revisit that form factor this year with a new set of markers – POSCAS! I’m just starting to get the hang of these markers and they were well suited for this purpose. The main challenge of this year were letting various colors dry in between applying new ones, while always switching between multiple boxes. I generally stuck with a theme of “landscapes” but after these few experiments would like to work more on this idea.
Thanks to my brother-in-law, Dan, who made me the wooden boxes!
Inspired/triggered by a contest on Instagram, I used some extra time one day to experiment in a new style on the theme slow down. Some of my work is precisely executed (here, here, here and here) so this was good practice in trying to work in a looser, less calculated way while still creating a systematic style for the illustration series. Below you can see the two sketch rounds before working in Adobe Illustrator to make the artwork above: lemonade, bird’s nest, summer swim, fresh bouquet, night fireworks.