Artists, designers, art students, and other people who can’t figure out how to do what you love what’s important:

Stop hitting yourself, why do you keep hitting yourself?

James Victore answers:

Q: I work at a job doing design I hate, I can never seem to find time to do the work I want to do, and I am constantly frustrated with myself. I wasn’t able to go to a great art program because of financial reasons so my BA was wasted. I don’t know what to do. I want to quit my job to become an amazing motion graphics designer but I’m scared. I’m in LA and it’s expensive and I don’t have anyone to fall back on. I have some money saved, but still I’m scared. I’m 26 and I see my thirties just ahead. I want to do what I love, not just waste time.


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Victore can be a little intense sometimes. (Especially when I think of people who can’t make a decision so easily — for example, say, immigrant mothers who have to think of their children before throwing caution to the wind and doing what they love. But that’s a question of What do you love more?)

But there are great things to take away from this video, regardless of your career. A few:

  1. Again, figure out what’s most important. Right now? In the future? Pursue that. Protect and secure that. (Victore doesn’t explicitly say this.)

  2. Be kind to your future self. Save $$. Set up your path. It might change, but at least you have some kind of foundation. Save your health, too.

  3. Everybody’s afraid. For me, the question is, But what’s scarier? Think about living in your current circumstances for the rest of your life. If it doesn’t make your skin crawl, then do nothing.

    I graduated with an art degree 2 years ago. I’m now about to go back to school for something that’s A. one of the most difficult things one can do and B. going to take me at least 10 years to complete. I’ll likely be well into my 30’s before I get where I want to be, older than most of the youngsters in Grad programs, and less of a genius than most of them. That’s scary. What about money? What if I fail — how embarrassing. But the thought of not trying is even worse.

  4. Do not leave your education up to other people. It’s up to you to work hard, get scholarships, take the best classes, take extra classes, learn online, etc. etc. etc.

    All my life, whenever I did something other than what people thought I was good at, I got asked the same question: “Why would you choose a photography concentration?” “Why aren’t you an illustration major if you’re so good at it?” “What does that class have to do with art?” “How come you haven’t done any art in a while?”

    Same answer to all: To learn something new. To invest time in something I’m not good at, rather than remaining comfortable and not failing at something I am. Because in the end, that gives me a stronger foundation, more ways of seeing the world, and thus more nodes to connect and build into something that never could’ve existed had I tunneled through on the fast track. Synergy.

  5. You’ll probably “waste” some time. Bite it and work hard. Notice how “10 years” looks like nothing in a biography, but feels like a century when it’s ahead of you?

    Recently, some strangers commented on a photo and caption of “me”: a nameless, context-less image. They said things like “her parents are obviously rich” and my favorite, “I’m envious that she can just do whatever she wants, and never had to work for a few years to support herself” etc. Wow. What a load of bullshit. Few people are that lucky — don’t let glossy success stories allow you to think otherwise. SEE ALSO.

    Victore wouldn’t say this, but sometimes you have to do something you don’t like for some time (work, school, even sell out), to secure a foundation for yourself. Understand this. You can complain, but deep down, understand what you’re doing, why you’re doing it, and have a plan of action.


TL;DR: Happiness doesn’t mean feeling good or smiling all the time.

Sorry Tony & Elon,
Gesture Interfaces are NOT “The Future” — for a damn good reason.

People have been trying to develop gesturing-interfaces since the 1980’s. The reason that after three decades no attempt to create such an interface has seen commercial success is because of a phenomenon known in tech-jargon as “gorilla arm”. Our human bodies were never intended to be able to execute fine finger and hand motions, while holding our arms up/out in front of us, for an extended period of time. It doesn’t take too many minutes of doing this before a user’s back, shoulder, neck and arm muscles start aching. As people observed at the time, “you start looking like a gorilla using it and feel like one when you’re done”.
In years past, the gesturing-interface was taught in the engineering classroom as a case study in non-ergonomic design.  I guess that was one of the class-days that Elon Musk must have skipped.
– wildiris

Sorry Tony & Elon,

Gesture Interfaces are NOT “The Future” — for a damn good reason.

People have been trying to develop gesturing-interfaces since the 1980’s. The reason that after three decades no attempt to create such an interface has seen commercial success is because of a phenomenon known in tech-jargon as “gorilla arm”. Our human bodies were never intended to be able to execute fine finger and hand motions, while holding our arms up/out in front of us, for an extended period of time. It doesn’t take too many minutes of doing this before a user’s back, shoulder, neck and arm muscles start aching. As people observed at the time, “you start looking like a gorilla using it and feel like one when you’re done”.

In years past, the gesturing-interface was taught in the engineering classroom as a case study in non-ergonomic design. I guess that was one of the class-days that Elon Musk must have skipped.

wildiris

wildcat2030
We have entered a post-post-studio age, and find ourselves with a new studio model: the transdisciplinary. Artists and designers are now defined not by their discipline but by the fluidity with which their practices move between the fields of architecture, art, and design

The Transdisciplinary Studio: Amazon.co.uk: Alex Coles: Books (via iamdanw)

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Like many things, true in theory.

The reality is that the title “Artist” is still most often met with the question “What do you paint?”

physicsphysics

jtotheizzoe:

A brilliant series of minimalist typographic tributes to scientists and their discoveries. I especially like the Copernicus one :)

Artwork by Kapil Ghagat (on Tumblr at bhagatkapil)

I don’t know if I like the Darwin one. It appears to perpetuate the false notion that evolution leads to something “greater” than what was.

But, these are pretty cool.

Everyone in the modern world should have at least a basic understanding of art.
I say this because of the countless times I’ve heard “I don’t understand art” either in private conversation or in popular media, and the phrase is left at just that. There’s no desire to try understand it, because the value of it has never been taught, either.
And I don’t mean like in elementary school when a guest “art teacher” comes in and shows you paintings by Picasso and tells you how famous he and his work are, how strange the art is, introduces you to the term “starving artist”, explains that what he did was called “Cubism” and that it basically meant rearranging people’s faces, and all the while with the expressed attitude that “people like you and I” aren’t really meant to grasp these things.
I have one specific memory from 3rd grade when our class was making poster boards about the rain forest. I was crafting a paper dragonfly, and my teacher came over and told me “You shouldn’t use that blue and purple tissue paper for the wings because that’s not realistic. You should use the cellophane.” (This woman also HATED lollipop trees.) In my bewildered 8-year-old mind, all I could think was something like — though less articulate than — “Are you kidding me? You actually think that clear cellophane is going to make this construction-paper dragonfly look realistic and that this is going to look good on a giant green board? Versus something opaque and colorful that would give the impression of the colors reflected off of the dragonfly’s wings while still managing to stand out and be interesting?” Sometimes showing what appears true without actually including everything that is literally seen is much closer to the actual truth and easier for the eye and mind to register than when we try to be too “realistic”.  As Picasso said, “Art is a lie that makes us realize truth.” But school is often like work-force training: resistance is futile, so you just nod, smile, and use the cellophane.
So what I do mean by art education is: the ability to recognize new patterns as well as to re-organize known ones. Comprehension of symbolism. The ability to see past the surface of a thing and recognize its underlying system, to re-organize that, think about other ways it could be put together — find new uses for things. Understanding arbitrariness. Understanding that experiencing an art work can be much like a scientific test: an isolated and sometimes psychological experiment that can only happen under specific circumstances, though less focused on the scientific method and results. The ability to deal with and comprehend foreign experiences or ideas; to entertain an alien thought. To be able to consider an idea or even reality itself from various perspectives… All creative and critical thinking. Survival skills, especially for living on an increasingly more connected earth where encountering newness is more of a daily reality for an average person than ever before. 
But, art education is extremely dangerous if you want to have a culture wherein everyone follows the rules.
Dragonfly extremely related. By { myu-myu }.

Everyone in the modern world should have at least a basic understanding of art.

I say this because of the countless times I’ve heard “I don’t understand art” either in private conversation or in popular media, and the phrase is left at just that. There’s no desire to try understand it, because the value of it has never been taught, either.

And I don’t mean like in elementary school when a guest “art teacher” comes in and shows you paintings by Picasso and tells you how famous he and his work are, how strange the art is, introduces you to the term “starving artist”, explains that what he did was called “Cubism” and that it basically meant rearranging people’s faces, and all the while with the expressed attitude that “people like you and I” aren’t really meant to grasp these things.

I have one specific memory from 3rd grade when our class was making poster boards about the rain forest. I was crafting a paper dragonfly, and my teacher came over and told me “You shouldn’t use that blue and purple tissue paper for the wings because that’s not realistic. You should use the cellophane.” (This woman also HATED lollipop trees.) In my bewildered 8-year-old mind, all I could think was something like — though less articulate than — “Are you kidding me? You actually think that clear cellophane is going to make this construction-paper dragonfly look realistic and that this is going to look good on a giant green board? Versus something opaque and colorful that would give the impression of the colors reflected off of the dragonfly’s wings while still managing to stand out and be interesting?” Sometimes showing what appears true without actually including everything that is literally seen is much closer to the actual truth and easier for the eye and mind to register than when we try to be too “realistic”.  As Picasso said, “Art is a lie that makes us realize truth.” But school is often like work-force training: resistance is futile, so you just nod, smile, and use the cellophane.

So what I do mean by art education is: the ability to recognize new patterns as well as to re-organize known ones. Comprehension of symbolism. The ability to see past the surface of a thing and recognize its underlying system, to re-organize that, think about other ways it could be put together — find new uses for things. Understanding arbitrariness. Understanding that experiencing an art work can be much like a scientific test: an isolated and sometimes psychological experiment that can only happen under specific circumstances, though less focused on the scientific method and results. The ability to deal with and comprehend foreign experiences or ideas; to entertain an alien thought. To be able to consider an idea or even reality itself from various perspectives… All creative and critical thinking. Survival skills, especially for living on an increasingly more connected earth where encountering newness is more of a daily reality for an average person than ever before.

But, art education is extremely dangerous if you want to have a culture wherein everyone follows the rules.

Dragonfly extremely related. By { myu-myu }.

[in this exclusive to KurzweilAI] Lt Col Garretson — one of the USAF’s most farsighted and original thinkers — … pushes the boundary of long-term thinking about humanity’s survival out to the edge … and beyond.

Most people can scarcely even envision or carry out an annual goal, a scary percentage of the American population is still in denial of human evolution (a timeline of only several million years, depending where one begins) …

and this man has the audacity to think of a billion year plan?

Well, excellent. Someone should be.

But veering slightly away from the topic of the essay, two thoughts struck me:

  1. I once created a graphic design project involving Kardashev’s Civilization Types. Admittedly it wasn’t very good, but the memory is irritating because of what my professor [or Art Director, really] said about it at the time: “I don’t understand this, and I don’t think anyone in the future will, either.”

    If Big — complex, possibly not easily digestible — Ideas are constantly rejected in the commercial realm due to a general lack of knowledge about them, or because of their difficult nature, or because the head of the project himself is more interested in using some idea of “The Future” that humanity thought of in the 1970’s, then the options are few:

    Change [the nature of] Graphic Design — something I don’t care to do, because the field itself is just a container for a motive: to be able to communicate these Ideas to a lot of people in a comprehensible way. Whether or not that happens as/within Graphic Design is not my concern. Or, leave the major — which I did.

  2. How does a “Thinker” pay the bills?
freshphotons

staceythinx:

Digits is a poster series by James Adame designed for a campaign to promote classroom visits by professionals that use math and science in their jobs. 

About the project:

This campaign was created for an initiative of the State of Mass. school board to show kids the importance of studying Math and Science…We wanted to show students that Math and Science isn’t scary- it makes dreams come true and surrounds us in daily life in everything we do.

••••••

I disagree with this idea.

This isn’t any different from anything they’re been doing in school for years, except it looks a little prettier.

I know this much: it wouldn’t have worked for me — I hated math in school. HATED it. Did well enough, but knew I’d almost never have to use it in my job (and I was right — I don’t). Now, years later, I’m actually doing Trig review for fun.

What happened is that I realized the inherent magic of it. By magic, I mean the math of physics, of Alan Turing, of the Golden Ratio, of the ancient Greeks! Whereas, unfortunately, the stuff above just brings the whole process down to the “kid’s level”. Kids, who love magic and superheros and pirates and fantasy and crazy shit… and they’re telling them about dull, commonplace things like bullies and… what’s up there? Wedgies? Ok, the invisibility one is pretty cool. But it isn’t real, unlike the aforementioned examples.

Let’s not be afraid to bring the wonder of the very real, mysterious world we live in into the classroom — Hell, into our daily lives.

Thank you, { Art Served }, for featuring the { Time Immersion Cubicle } today!
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The TIC is an immersive, wearable art work inspired by a Japanese koan, ephemerality, and theories about space-time.
Olena Shmahalo, 2009.

Thank you, { Art Served }, for featuring the { Time Immersion Cubicle } today!

••••••

The TIC is an immersive, wearable art work inspired by a Japanese koan, ephemerality, and theories about space-time.

Olena Shmahalo, 2009.

Image: Issey Miyake
Christopher Forte: { Japan — An Ascetic Aesthetic }

There is a notion of modesty and subtlety, a respect for ceremony and procedure, an approach to duty and honor – that is unique to Japan. To the western eye these values are construed as anything from hopelessly anachronistic to downright obsessive – yet they contribute to a reverence for aesthetics that is utterly unique and exquisitely complex. This distinctive approach to all that appeals to the senses has, over centuries, imbued the Japanese with a veritable omnibus of terms that define everything from the simplest idea of placement (shibui: austerity of taste – not concealing the true nature of an object – a vase is a vase, a toaster is a toaster…) to the most esoteric concepts of shaping space (aji: where the incongruity of the object speaks of the congruity of the whole – the idea of sleeves filled with nothing, of space filled only with color…)

Image: Issey Miyake

Christopher Forte: { Japan — An Ascetic Aesthetic }

There is a notion of modesty and subtlety, a respect for ceremony and procedure, an approach to duty and honor – that is unique to Japan. To the western eye these values are construed as anything from hopelessly anachronistic to downright obsessive – yet they contribute to a reverence for aesthetics that is utterly unique and exquisitely complex. This distinctive approach to all that appeals to the senses has, over centuries, imbued the Japanese with a veritable omnibus of terms that define everything from the simplest idea of placement (shibui: austerity of taste – not concealing the true nature of an object – a vase is a vase, a toaster is a toaster…) to the most esoteric concepts of shaping space (aji: where the incongruity of the object speaks of the congruity of the whole – the idea of sleeves filled with nothing, of space filled only with color…)