I was sitting in a meeting where the principles of 5S were being reviewed. For those who are not aware, 5S is the name of a workplace organization method that uses a list of five Japanese words: seiri, seiton, seiso, seiketsu, and shitsuke. Transliterated or translated into English (Sort, Straighten, Sanitize (Shine), Standardize and Sustain), they all start with the letter “S”. The list describes how to organize a work space for efficiency and effectiveness by identifying and storing the items used, maintaining the area and items, and sustaining the new order. The decision-making process usually comes from a dialogue about standardization, which builds understanding among employees of how they should do the work. I often sketch while I’m listening so while we were talking about 5S this happened:
When the meeting was over I liked the sketch enough to spend some time drawing it in AI and doing some rendering in Photoshop:
|VCT Tile Floor||Pixelated||Foam Craft||Barcode|
|Diamond Plate||Legos||Cake||Road Sign|
|BBall Court||Target||Sidewalk Chalk||Painting|
I started a list of ways I could render the T3 Design logo. After I did the first few I started turning them into wallpapers for my computer:
LiteBrite - Everyone had one of these as a kid I think. They were a lot of fun and presented an interesting challenge since the pegs were in a hex pattern. I also remember that when you screwed up and put a peg in the wrong place you had a hole that light came through that you couldn’t fix! This is not a real picture, it is photoshoped from a website I found: LiteBrite
Stained Glass - This is another completely photoshoped image. I found stock images of glass and then created the “lead” frame and the landscape outside. This one was challenging, but fun.
Sand - Again, totally photoshoped. I found a stock image of the beach and then used filters to create the impression in the sand.
Embroidery - This one is real. I got a friend was has a monogramming business (You Name It) who offered to sew my logo out for me. I snapped a pic and cleaned it up a bit and there it is.
VCT Tile Floor - Another complete photoshop job. I used sample tile images from a web site selling tile and then created the pattern and outline. The chair is from an entry in a digital design contest.
Pixelated - I have always enjoyed pointelism and the associated art. I have played around with photoshop and several online resources to create lots of interesting effects. This is just one version.
Foam Craft - Long story short, we have advent at our house on Sunday (during the 4 weeks of advent of course) and invite several families over. Each Sunday a different family is in charge of a craft for the kids to do. This was one of the crafts. Everyone else made angels and “joy” and crosses, I made T3Design!
Barcode - Simple concept. I used an online barcode generator to create a barcode that actually is “T3DESIGN” and then fit it into a template of my logo. Kind of cool I think.
Skyscraper - Stock photo that I stretched and then photoshopped the lights in the windows.
Space Invaders - I’m a huge 80’s arcade fan. I took a screen shot of space invaders, hand pixelated the various elements, then laid them out to fit my T3Design logo. The scores are by birth year, my wedding year (high score for me!) and waiting for my year of death.
Neon - After doing the artwork for the Cowboy Arcade Project I used the same photoshop effects and layers to recreate the T3 in orange neon.
Sketchbook - I’ve probably drawn the T3 logo in my sketchbooks dozen’s of times. This time I took the extra effort to shoot a pic and size it to match my wallpaper template.
Diamond Plate - When I built the Arcade machine for my game room. I cut the T3 logo out of aluminum diamond plate and had it hard anodized orange for a kick plate on the machine. Figured that counted as a valid wallpaper.
Legos - Everyone loves Legos! My kids have tons of them. Unfortunately, orange is not a common color. Instead of spending $200+ bucks on the legos that would be needed to actually build this, I took pictures of several bricks and then photoshopped the full picture. I used Excel to create a layout grid that I filled in to create the pattern, then imported that to Photoshop to add the actual bricks. The hardest part was getting the black bricks to not have a repeating pattern. Someday I might spring for the bricks and really build it…
Cake - My daughter is always baking stuff. Cookies, cakes, good stuff…sugar and spice stuff…the things girls are made of. So she says, “Dad, let’s make the T3 logo out of cake!” What’s a dad to say? She used white cake dyed orange that we cut the “T” out of. Orange icing, a white piped “3″ and some black sparkly icing for the “design” and we had a winner. We shot the pic on the dining room buffet table (black antiqued wood). We shot several pics with the cake whole, then we took a bite…we liked the bitten cake better!
Road Sign - Another photoshopped scene. I liked the soft folding road sign and the interest in the background. I had to replicate the highlights after removing the original lettering. I find these pretty easy to do, but time consuming and difficult to do really well. I will leave it to you to decide which this is.
Basketball Court - Ok, so I’m watching the 2013 NBA Championship Series game 6, Spurs vs. Heat, with my 11 yr old son who is a basket freak (is dead set on playing for the NBA someday and very well may make it) and I think to myself, “self, why not have T3 in the center of your own basketball court?” I usually think my own ideas are good ones, so I agreed. I chose to render the T3 as stain on the floor rather than opaque paint like is being done more often these days. I am after all “avant garde”.
Target - Not sure why, but I though of this during a run. Then when I got home I couldn’t remember the great idea I had while running. I knew I had thought of something, just not what. Took me several days to remember. I chalk it up to getting older… Still, I did remember and then did it. THis is another total photoshop job. I found the kind of old school NRA target online and did a lot of altering to make it fit my wallpaper format. Then I played with the bullet holes until they looked right to me.
Sidewalk Chalk - Can you say “photoshop”? Yep, another complete fake. This was fun to put together but now that I have photoshopped it I might just do it for real.
Painting - My lovely daughter was trying her hand at painting and offered to paint my T3 logo. I think she did a great job and now I have a painting I can hang.
Other Ideas waiting to be done:
- brand on a cow (or even better, a zebra)
- flowers in a flower bed (like in fancy landscaping)
- a pool
- meatloaf with ketchup
- bottle caps (like a pixelated image)
- torch cut metal
- mowed into grass, or a crop circle thing
- ice sculpture
- indie concert poster
- tread pattern in the bottom of a shoe
- pavement, pavestones, etc.
- cars in a parking lot
- architectural plan
- painted on a barn
- painted on a brick wall
- hooked rug (in the works thanks to my daughter)
- needle point or cross stitched (or both)
- seats in a stadium
- post-it notes
- shaved into hair on head
- christmas lights
- craters on the moon
- “grand canyon”
- mustard on a hamburger
- pin art / replicator
- sewer grate or manhole cover
A friend ask me to lay out a locator card for providers to carry in their pockets to give to patients so they could transition from one facility to another. He sent me a scan of a handwritten page describing what he wanted:
I love these kinds of jobs. Tell me what you want to accomplish and let me come up with a way to do it. He sent me a style guide so I had access to vector logos and accurate colors. He also gave me the link to a web based map that I ended up basing the map side of the card on. After some back and forth and a few edits we are both happy with the final product:
The thing about a project like this is that it is not cutting edge design, not even very original from a concept standpoint. However, it is the kind of design that is executed millions of times a day. Doing this kind of thing well makes everything a little better, doing it poorly makes the world a less beautiful place. I hope I did it well.
One of the great things about having lots of kids (we have 6) is that at least one of them is always coming up with something. In this case, my second son (17 yrs old) decided to start a “gang”, but was quick to explain that they weren’t a “bad” gang, they were a “good” gang that promoted manly virtues and conduct.
So began the “NorthSide Ruckus”.
He asked me to help him with a logo and said he wanted a snake that was mean looking but not evil. After a couple of days, and about a dozen iterations, he decided he liked this:
If you ask my dad, ALL snakes are evil. I think the snake in this design has some evil in him.
This is a project that was a long time coming. I did the original design work for the Crossings Christian School Logo and Marks. As the school has grown, and more students and parents are involved in more activities, the need to manage the logo and typography has grown too. So a style guide was a good place to start.
We are working on a tech startup, and needed a “name” to use for the project until we actually named it. Looking over a list of code words for WWII missions we found Anvil, which was the code word for the invasion of southern France. Cool. So we started using that. When it came time to name the company we are starting we had grown to love Anvil. We added Red and Group and “Red Anvil Group” was born. The group is part of the official name but won’t be used when speaking about the company and we might even drop the red at times and just say “Anvil”. So the logo needed to say that, be strong, and be boldly graphic.
I created the anvil first. I started with a more complex design, but the simpler I made it, the better it looked. The word mark was in a font that had a rounded edge to it originally and the anvil was solid red. One of the principles in the start up is dating a designer, Kimberly Witchey, so we asked her to come up with some biz card ideas. She suggested changing the red to a deeper color and making it a gradient to add some depth and intensity. She also switched the word mark to Cool Grey 7 and on her suggestion I changed the font too. She came up with the card design, which we think rocks!
Here is the progression from first draft to final logo:
My eldest son (18) has been picking up odd jobs here and there and is getting pretty good at landscape and general handyman work. He is wanting to promote himself a little more and came to me to see if I would help him with a biz card. He is the fourth in our name line, so playing off that I came up with the idea to play off the fourth dimension….
The biz card has a QRCode on the back that is a VCard of the info on the card.
I’m involved in the development of an iPhone app and one of the things we needed was the icon for the app on the phone. The name of the app is “Check Six”. I tried several different approaches before I hit on the idea to literalize the name and came up with this:
Well, not bad in the “not good” sense, but bad in the “I’m gonna kick your keester” sense.
Mojo would like an arcade machine too. We may or may not ever get around to actually building it, but we did have some fun talking about it and I went ahead and did the design work for the cab.
I based the machine off an old Taito cab which has fantastic old school lines. Sticking with the Mojo theme I settled on ninja stuff and even went so far as to make him joy stick handles that look like Katana sword handles. The option to make the right side red (player two) and the left side black (player one) could go either way. I think is we do ever build this I would want to render the art with textures and layers to make it look like the art from an old Kung Fu movie.
I frequently keep up with the going’s on at the BYOAC forum (Build Your Own Arcade Controls). People use the forum to talk about, get help for and document every imaginable issue related to the collecting, restoration and rebuilding of arcade games. This includes something called MAME (Multiple Machine Arcade Emulator) which allows someone to build a custom arcade cabinet and then play any arcade game ever produced like it was a real arcade machine. Every once in a while someone posts something that catches my interest from an artwork standpoint. A guy I will only ever know as “eds1275″ started a project to build a cabinet for his nephews and their theme was “Limeaid”. He posted his idea for a marquee and kind of ask what everyone thought. Foe some reason I had an idea, so I created a marquee design for him and posted it back. He liked it and after cleaning it up a little I uploaded it for him.
You can view the forum thread about this arcade cabinet here.