This year I attended a graphic design conference and one topic really stuck out. Danny Gregory spoke about the importance of keeping a daily sketchbook. As a creative professional, it’s easy to forget that one of the fundamental reasons I entered into this field was the simple joy of making stuff. Many of us forget that making art can be just for fun. And it’s okay to have fun everyday, right?
Danny encouraged us to focus on the process of drawing and not to think too much about the subject matter and/or end result. Everyday people and things are perfect to sketch. I’ve taken his advice and found it to be a joyful experience and a wonderful way to start the day. I’m not as practiced as Danny, but one day I hope to be. A few of my sketches can be seen on this post. Check out Danny’s youtube channel to see some of his work. It’s fantastic.
Maps are fun. I love the process and the finished product. But like most worthwhile projects, in the middle they can be challenging.
A map must precisely reflect reality so there’s not a lot of wiggle room regarding structure. That said, after establishing the framework, it’s amazing how much character can be added with design and illustration. To see what I mean, check out two of my recent map projects.
Camp Greystone is a magical camp located up in the mountains of western North Carolina. Click the map to enlarge.
SEWE / Downtown Charleston
SEWE updated their map for the 2013 show. Jonathan Miller, author of the Sammy Dog Books series, provided some awesome illustrations. Click the map to enlarge.
I recently had the chance to work with MillVillageFarms on their 1st Annual Beach Biz Camp. MVG is a non-profit in Greenville, SC run by Mr. Cool himself, Dan Weidenbenner. Their mission is to grow food (and oh boy do they) as well as develop employment opportunities for youths in mill villages.
Dan brought 7 guys, all teens enrolled in the summer program, down for a field trip to Charleston to learn, explore and beach it. Each participant is learning about entrepreneurialism and putting together a business plan to be launched later this year.
The course is tough, but I was able to teach them about the fun stuff: branding and logo design. It was a blast. These kids were awesome and their business ideas were legit: a high-end sock company, hand-picked flowers, popsicles, a pie shop, car wash, drum school, etc. We ended class by sketching out logo ideas for their companies.
It was a great two days. Thanks Dan for what you’re doing and best of luck to all the young entrepreneurs.