This 2013, I promised myself that I will get back to my creative mindset because I felt that I kinda lost it when I started working full-time as an in-house graphic artist…so I came to a decision.
But before the drama, let me tell you about Jessica Walsh, an art director and partner at Sagmeister and Walsh. Jessica is a fearless lady who has a big influence in design and art direction. After watching her presentation/lecture during the Graphika Manila design conference a few weeks ago, I became an instant fan. I hope I don’t sound like a stalker, but after knowing about her and her works, I researched more about Jessica and came across this great interview by The Great Discontent which made me love her even more.
I found out that she was offered an in-house job at Apple in California right after graduating, but she turned it down and chose to move to New York and be an intern with Pentagram and do some freelance works. She was then helped by The Paula Scher get her first job as an art director for Print Magazine…and then…well, Jessica became The Jessica Walsh.
In the interview, she was asked, “Did you have any moments when you had to decide between doing something financially stable as opposed to doing something more creative that you really loved?”
Her answer was simple but it struck me the most:
“I think it was what I mentioned earlier—the temptation of taking the job at Apple versus doing the internship with Paula at Pentagram. I knew Apple would be much more stable and well-paid, but I knew in my heart that in the end, I would be much happier at a design studio than I would with an in-house job.”
Her answer is very much relatable with my situation now, but the only difference is that I accepted the job offer as an in-house designer with Apple’s top competitor (figure it out). But then, like I said earlier, I made a decision. Yes, I’m quitting this “corporate job”.
Tomorrow’s in fact my last day. Finally!
Like Jessica, she went through a tough decision…but it was a good one. Just to be clear, I had planned to quit way before I knew about Jessica—but I found her career path story comforting. It made me feel that leaving this stable job and going back to freelancing will get me somewhere. I just have to believe in my talent and never stop creating.
If you have a passion for design (or art direction), and you are considering a career path in the creative field, make Jessica Walsh your role model.
“Don’t judge a book by its cover,” they say, but I can’t help disagreeing with this phrase…at least in its literal sense. As an art enthusiast, I enjoy looking at book covers. A beautiful cover stands out in a shelf and makes me pick it up and explore more about it–the story, the author and of course, the book cover artist.
I am currently reading John Green’s “The Fault in the Stars”. The book is definitely one of John Green’s bests because of its tragic yet realistic theme (no wonder it was a #1 New York Times bestseller); and its artwork cover did the novel justice…
…and the artist behind it is New York graphic designer, Rodrigo Corral. You may not be familiar with him but I’m pretty sure you have seen his works on the shelves. Corral had art directed/designed conspicuous book covers such as Junot Diaz’s “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao” and “This is How You Lose Her” (i love this cover), James Frey’s “A Miliiion Little Pieces”, and even the Olsen Twins’ “Influence”.
but what made Rodrigo Corral famous were his book cover artworks for Chuck Palahniuk’s novels. He has been designing Palahniuk’s book covers since 1999 such as:
His cover designs reflect his creativity and professionalism at the same time. His design process involve reading the novel several times to get its big idea and then illustrate things that would interpret it.
Can we all just stop and marvel at these cover album artworks of two of my favorite bands?
Foster the People:
Young and Sick, founded by Aaron Saltzman, is the one behind these whimsical and surreal pieces. Their style reminds me of Picasso’s art with a 60-70’s vibe. I usually appreciate minimalism more but I guess these are an exception.
And oh, Young and Sick don’t just do illustration–they create dope music as well! Check out Young and Sick here.
I learned typography before I can write. I can still remember my favorite game I play with my mom years back when I was a toddler where she would write the alphabet and we would turn each letter into an image with a name that starts with its corresponding letter. For example, turning the letter ‘B’ into a butterfly by making ‘B’ look like wings. Something like this:
…or ‘S’ for snake (easy peasy).
Now at 21, I still PLAY that game for a living…I design logos. Designing logos is not an easy “game” because it requires both creativity and problem solving–you have to make it work.
I am a fan of typography and I use most of this type of technique when I design and I got very excited when I found out about Ji Lee (former creative director of Google) and his book entitled “Word as Image“. His book features over a hundred words turned into images.
“Word as Image brings a little magic back to the alphabet by helping us see the fun and humor behind the lines and squiggles.” – Ji Lee
Well I guess that magic is what we call CREATIVITY.
Sometimes, all we need is think like we used to as kids. We can turn simple lines and shapes into something majestic if we see things differently.
Learn more about Word as Image HERE.
Let’s admit it: As kids, we used to design our own rocket ships.
Random artwork by yours truly. Check out my other random pieces here.