Ten Weeks, Aziz, and Adele

Yesterday I finished my fall quarter. It was a very challenging ten weeks but it has paid off with the amount I was able to take in. It’s interesting to see how many aspects of graphic design can be applied practically everywhere in the work of a designer and life in general. 

I had the challenge of building a responsive website and relearning After Effects through a motion media course. In addition, I had the privilege of working in the production room, helping some of my peers bind and trim books, amongst other things. Even if at times it was stressful, I have been rewarded with a rich experience, just like every other quarter. I am thankful for that. I am also thankful to get some time off.

I was recently talking with a classmate and she mentioned how one of the traits of great designers seem to be just that they are interested in many things in general, not just design. I thought about it, and thinking about the classmates and professors I’ve admired the most, I believe that to be true. It makes me happier to think about it that way because I always thought that my interest in so many things was a disadvantage to my focus as a designer, but it might be a good thing. The main thing to keep in mind is that each individual should keep a clear view of where they want their future to be and not get sidetracked in opportunities that take away from your true passions and interests, even if it provides stability. 

I feel like this idea of focus and decisions and age have subtly come up for me many times in my (young) life, but recently more than ever. I watched Aziz Ansari’s new show “Master of None” and the (spoiler) ending had to do with him doing something spontaneous and how as a thirty year old he was really thinking about where his life was going, and if this was it for him. In addition to this show, Adele’s new album release had me reading several articles about her and her recent projects besides “25”, which included a failed project she did with Damon Albarn. In an interview, Damon mentioned how he was mainly disappointed in how insecure she was, even as the young artist she is. Adele’s consideration for her age is clear even through her record titles alone, and with her amazing talent I’m sure not one could really think that she should be as shy and concerned seeing how talented and accomplished she has been at just 25! And while I am not comparing myself to the greatness of Adele, I think it’s hard for some of us to see that maybe we aren’t doing so bad, especially if you’re conscious of the decisions you’re making to get you where you want to be. But that’s always easier said than done. 

To finish off, I want to share a quote I found the other day: “In an age overflowing with information and infinite choices, we must find and choose our paths. There’s no right answer. There are as many joys as there are tragedies and uncertainties. To simply know ‘how to live’ in this age is a challenge.” (Entrip, 2009)

Discipline and Constructivism

I’m spending a lot of time reading lately. This last year has been an incredibly tough ride for me but I’m glad that I can focus on myself. I’ve spoken to many of my classmates after coming back from my summer internship and into this new (and last) school year and I’ve realized a lot of things that I need to focus on, not just a creative, but as a person overall. 

I think the biggest thing that differentiates the best from the rest is discipline. I notice it within my own work, as the work that I constantly reworked to the point that I almost hated it always feels more put together than the ones that are only on their third rework, sitting comfortably in their beginning stages. I think that disciplining ourselves to know our priorities in how much we want to work on something, and how thorough our editing process ends up being is truly the definition of our work. Just a thought.

I’ve recently bought a new camera (canon 5ti) and am excited to start shooting a lot more. I’ve been conscious about the places I am at, the things I see, and feel that I’m getting somewhere in terms of my personal style in photography, but I still have a long way to go. 

I’m working on (yet another) constructivist inspired motion media piece and am finding inspiration through this video I found:

Subisú branding by Futura

“Subisú is an ice cream and popsicles brand. The graphic concept is inspired on the naivety of children, when they still believe in impossible things. We designed an icon based on these fantasies. 

The name is a combination of two ideas, on one hand, it was inspired on a sweet French song that repeats “Bisou Bisou”, and on the other hand, its also a game of the word “subibaja” (seesaw), where our main character plays with a balloon. 

The combination of texture, colors and materials tell the story of a handmade Mexican product. 

Subisú, a brand inspired on children cravings that last forever.”

By one of my favorite studios. More on their website

Is Photography Living?

I have never had the confidence of calling myself a photographer. I am trained in graphic design, but I’ve always taken photos. When I was in 6th grade I got my parents’ old Canon point-and-shoot and would take up to a hundred photos a day. I remember editing myself down, finding what I liked and what I did not like. I first started taking photos of things—trees, leaves, rocks, buildings, the sky—but soon enough I began taking photos of my friends. Though I’m sure I overwhelmed them at time, I felt that it was nice to document their moments and give them something nice to remember that very specific moment. 

A lot developed since those first moments with my camera but a lot also remains the same. My friends are often my subjects, as well as my obsession with textures, angles, and light. But today I am mainly accompanied by my iPhone rather than my DSLR/sony. There are things I consider in my everyday life that make the exploration of photography a lot more difficult even if I’m at the ease of my phone, which takes photos of significant better quality than that first point-and-shoot. I do think it’s important to enjoy the moment as it is. I’ve made that a priority of mine this year, but it comes at a cost. Some of the my most cherished images I’ve captured in moments where I could’ve been immersing myself in a moment. Often times I fear of the stigma that the age of social media and oversharing gives my generation, so as someone that wants to define their skills as a photographer and pursue a documentative discipline, it is hard to embrace it all without feeling basic. 

It’s far more than just photos for me. Each color and capture is a moment in time. I remember almost all of the moments I’ve captured, whilst holding my breath and listening in. 

But at the end of the day I always think about my trade—between taking the shot or feeling the moment.

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