Sunday, February 27, 2011

FreelanceSwitch: 30 Inherently Useful Tools for Freelancers

I have not tried all of these tools and so can not endorse everything here, but i look forward to checking them out and seeing how they incorporate into my workflow. I would love to know what you think. Or if there is anything else out there not on this list, i'd also be interested.



Underpaintings: The Nomad Brush for iPad

Underpaintings: The Nomad Brush for iPad: "My wife recently gifted me with my first Apple iPad, and I've been enjoying exploring the possibilities of this new tool.  Though ..."

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Visual Stories

I am spelbound by Kseniya Simonova's performance art/visual storytelling. Great piece!

Visual Stories

An amazing video showing a young Ukranian woman telling a heartwrenching story about a couple torn apart by World War II using nothing but sand, a lightbox, and music. It’s mesmerizing and brilliantly executed.

Gurney Journey: Juana la Loca

Gurney Journey: Juana la Loca: "In his painting Juana la Loca, Spanish painter Francisco Pradilla Ortiz (1848-1921) told an epic story worthy of a best-selling novel or a Hollywood movie..."

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Frozen Time

Frozen Time is a cool piece of short CG animation by Polish animators Paweł Rajch and Wojtek Sokołowski, created as a diploma project, set in 19th century Paris and falls somewhere between animation and a comic book, although thankfully not a ‘motion comic’ as such, more an animation where the time in some scenes is frozen and split screens appear taking the form of comics panels to show different perspectives and angles:

Animation short : "Frozen Time - Zamarznięty Czas" from Wojtek Sokołowski on Vimeo.


I am still playing with the format of the site. I want to keep it simple but have substance. I would love to showcase some of my work and the work of the very talented people/friends that I work with. I would like to discuss what an art director does and what happens in a film art department. I also want to talk about creative projects in general and provide inspiration for others to go out and create on their own.

If you have any suggestions about what else you would like to see, know about or how to make this site a better experience, please let me know.


The Management

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Visual Stories - CINEMOSAIC

Lou Romano put these together when doing research for his color scripts at PIXAR.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Laborer, Craftsman, Artist

“If you work with your hands, you’re a laborer.
If you work with your hands and your mind, you’re a craftsman.
If you work with your hands and your mind and your heart, you’re an artist.”
—Saint Francis of Assisi

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A Design (Creative) Thinker’s Personality Profile

Contrary to popular opinion, you don’t need weird shoes or a black turtleneck to be a de- sign thinker. Nor are design thinkers neces- sarily created only by design schools, even though most professionals have had some kind of design training. My experience is that many people outside professional design have a natural aptitude for design thinking, which the right development and experi- ences can unlock. Here, as a starting point, are some of the characteristics to look for in design thinkers:
Empathy. They can imagine the world from multiple perspectives—those of col- leagues, clients, end users, and customers (current and prospective). By taking a “peo- ple first” approach, design thinkers can imag-
ine solutions that are inherently desirable and meet explicit or latent needs. Great de- sign thinkers observe the world in minute de- tail. They notice things that others do not and use their insights to inspire innovation.
Integrative thinking. They not only rely on analytical processes (those that produce either/ or choices) but also exhibit the ability to see all of the salient—and sometimes contradictory— aspects of a confounding problem and create novel solutions that go beyond and dramatically improve on existing alternatives. (See Roger Martin’s The Opposable Mind: How Successful Leaders Win Through Integrative Thinking.)
Optimism. They assume that no matter how challenging the constraints of a given problem, at least one potential solution is better than the existing alternatives. Experimentalism. Significant innovations don’t come from incremental tweaks. Design
thinkers pose questions and explore con- straints in creative ways that proceed in en- tirely new directions.
Collaboration. The increasing complexity of products, services, and experiences has re- placed the myth of the lone creative genius with the reality of the enthusiastic interdisci- plinary collaborator. The best design thinkers don’t simply work alongside other disciplines; many of them have significant experience in more than one. At IDEO we employ people who are engineers and marketers, anthropolo- gists and industrial designers, architects and psychologists.

-Tim Brown (CEO IDEO)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Make Believe

Creative Flow

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi identifies the following nine characteristics of creative flow:

1. There are clear goals every step of the way. Knowing what you are trying to achieve gives your actions a sense of purpose and meaning.

2. There is immediate feedback to your actions. Not only do you know what you are trying to achieve, you are also clear about how well you are doing it. This makes it easier to adjust for optimum performance. It also means that by definition flow only occurs when you are performing well.

3. There is a balance between challenges and skills. If the challenge is too difficult we get frustrated; if it is too easy, we get bored. Flow occurs when we reach an optimum balance between our abilities and the task in hand, keeping us alert, focused and effective.

4. Action and awareness are merged. We have all had experiences of being in one place physically, but with our minds elsewhere often out of boredom or frustration. In flow, we are completely focused on what we are doing in the moment.

5. Distractions are excluded from consciousness. When we are not distracted by worries or conflicting priorities, we are free to become fully absorbed in the task.

6. There is no worry of failure. A single-minded focus of attention means that we are not simultaneously judging our performance or worrying about things going wrong.

7. Self-consciousness disappears. When we are fully absorbed in the activity itself, we are not concerned with our self-image, or how we look to others. While flow lasts, we can even identify with something outside or larger than our sense of self such as the painting or writing we are engaged in, or the team we are playing in.

8. The sense of time becomes distorted. Several hours can fly by in what feels like a few minutes, or a few moments can seem to last for ages.

9. The activity becomes ‘autotelic’ – meaning it is an end in itself. Whenever most of the elements of flow are occurring, the activity becomes enjoyable and rewarding for its own sake. This is why so many artists and creators report that their greatest satisfaction comes through their work. As Noel Coward put it, Work is more fun than fun.