Range of Work

6 months

Projects ranging from print to web design that I have created in the last 6 months.

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Kerning

It separates the men from the boys, the experienced from the inexperienced, the designer from the desktop publisher.

The art of typography.

The skill of design.

When I was in college, my professor used to drill it into us almost daily the need for kerning in text. Since he was considered “old school,” he was very adverse to digital typography and how ugly the computer spit out fonts. His dogma to kerning has rubbed off on me and probably my former classmates as well. I cringe at computer generated letter-spacing and the fact it gets printed in thousands of copies with no expertise.

Now, I am not so vigilant that every piece of text needs to be letter spaced perfectly. Body copy needs attention for point size, line length, tracking and leading. BUT I do feel that headlines and sub-headlines need that special care. The more you work with a certain font, the more you get to know where is shines and it’s shortcomings in kerning. You’ll also begin to notice that more you pay for a font, the more attention to detail it has with things like kerning.

I know for most kerning goes unnoticed when used correctly because it is balanced and looks right. We know the time, effort and skill used.

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Unicorns

You know that mythical animal that looks like a horse with a horn coming from it’s forehead. It’s an animal that is created from 2 things that normally don’t go together. Well in the design world they represent a person with skills that normally don’t go together either.

You have probably seen a job postings over the past few years from companies looking to fill their needs when budgets are tight. Examples like, “print design with AutoCAD experience” or “video editing, web developer and print design.” WOW! Those are some big shoes to fill. Also the ability to work with both sides of the brain at that level is amazing. Or maybe something else.

Jack of all trades – a person who can do many different types of work, but who not necessarily very competent at any of them, i.e. master of none. Companies settle for this skill(s) set, but risk experience, quality and clients. I am well aware that companies needs change and gone are the days of “spend like there’s no tomorrow.” That’s why people are putting on more “hats” throughout the work day. Companies are wanting to stretch their employees, but at what cost?

In sports there are positions that are based on a certain skill set. Now if the roster is small, the coach will try to use players that can be flexible and play in positions that are similar. BUT you would be hard pressed to see a player who is the quarterback, kicker and defensive end.

People who are great at their jobs are: excellent at a few things, good at a few more and knowledgeable in others. This is the framework for a great employee. Then you add experience, teamwork, talent and drive to have them stand out from the herd.

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A compelling reason

Times are tough!  Everyone is feeling it. People are a lot more conscious of where their money goes and so creating a development solicitation is a real challenge. So first on the list was a direct mail piece for people who haven’t given to the college.

A compelling reason has always been my frustration in creating materials for development. Someone had sent a link to everyone about the top 10 most effective non-profit campaigns. I looked at it and thought, “great ideas, but they’re promoting a need.” A couple for cancer, helping the homeless, feed the world, etc. Great causes to help those less fortunate, but we’re higher ed. So I came up with the idea to acknowledge what we are not, but to utilize it to create a compelling reason.

We aren’t curing cancer.
We aren’t ending world hunger.
We aren’t liberating the oppressed.

We are sparking the passions, developing the minds, and advancing the abilities of those who do.

 

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Hello world!

John’s getting his feet wet again in the www. It’s like riding a bike, you never forget.

BUT

  • You get the old stuff out; ya it works, but doesn’t represent who you are.
  • It takes a lot longer than you thought.
  • Technology changes rapidly.
  • Links don’t always work. And “oil” is not going to work this time.
  • What was “cool” back then, dates you now.
  • It’s like a mechanic’s vehicle, it never gets finished. Or is the last on the “todo” list
  • When you fall it hurts. Wait…are we talking about biking or websites?
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