Archives: Visual Timeline

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  • Making the Blog

    September 6, 2010

    This blog had to get built really fast in between other projects. Rather than starting from scratch, I built off of the shoulders of a pre-existing theme. It is a good ‘un from Organic Themes called Portfolio. I was attracted to the jquery slideshow on the homepage…and the fact that it is specifically configured to […]

  • amfAR Map+Slideshows

    September 8, 2010

    Last week, I finished up an interactive annual report for the AIDS research non-profit, amfAR. You can check it out here. They have an amazing track record for funding successful scientific research and efficacious community outreach work. Their work also happens to frequently be difficult to explain/understand quickly (as is often the case with actual science…) So showcasing the year’s accomplishments for the general public is a bit tricky.

  • I have a new blog. Why?

    September 9, 2010

    It’s like an extension of my workspace… all the way into Wordpress.

    I’ve been considering it for a while now and just decided to make it happen alongside the website redesign. Perhaps the first thing you’ve noticed is the decidedly unsexy title. This is no mistake. “BLOG” is the most accurate description for this part of my site. Essentially: is the sausage and the blog wing of it is all about sausage-making. I’m treating it like an extension of my desk, which—at 16 feet long—had previously failed to protrude into virtual space.

  • Making the Handkermap

    September 22, 2010

    Wow, I am so pleased with how this project turned out. (You can check out the final product on my site here.) “Go team!” may be the appropriate emphatic expression here, as this was a truly collaborative effort with Youngna and Jacob. We share similar sensibilities, so we were able to take the kernel of the idea and rapidly evolve it. All of the time saved could therefore be allotted to design work (K) and production work (Y+J) and letterpressing (K.) We worked hard.

  • New Website+Vote!

    October 1, 2010

    The new portfolio website launched after several weeks of hard design/coding work and even harder editing/writing. The concept was to create a romanticized workspace—making all of the tools of an art/design career more whimsical, reinterpreting their rational function. The top of each project page becomes a timeline ruler, against which all projects are dated. Graph paper, crop marks, and incremental perforation forego their functional role to act as design elements, adding depth and texture. Technically-speaking: The front page is a hacked google map (more on how that is done later) and the interior is built with MODx open-source CMS as a backend. No more flash = swift updates, i-device compatibility, and web fonts…oh my!

  • Documenting Work

    October 4, 2010

    Historically, I’ve lacked an interest in adequately documenting work. Websites have run their complete lifespan without me ever expending the 30 seconds on taking screengrabs. Drawings have decomposed to a state of smudges and dust before going into the photo studio. The resultant grainy phone photos and lorem-ipsum filled web page comps populated all too much of the old site. There is no good excuse for this sorry state of affairs—but I suppose that I felt that once a project was complete, there as nothing new to learn about it.

  • CMS’s: Party in Front…

    October 25, 2010

    The term CMS (or Content Management System) describes technologies which separate the functional/structural code of a website from the content of a site. They are particularly useful for websites with templated pages (like portfolio websites) and make these sites much more efficient to update. In this article, I’ll provide a little bit of insight into how/why my new site was created— and will also cover choosing the right CMS for your portfolio site.

  • Letterpress Hack #1

    November 29, 2010

    An old plate+scissors= a new project In this new series, “letterpress hacks,” my intention is to share some things that I’ve picked up through experimentation and/or the misuse of materials.   It will cover unconventional (i.e. incorrect) shortcuts, alternative uses, and tools that I find useful in extending (i.e. hacking) this truly fantastic printmaking medium. […]

  • New Client Work .:. Nov.

    November 30, 2010

    In my maiden post, one of the reasons cited for creating the blog was to keep myself accountable to my self-initiated projects.  But sometimes (like this entire November for example), opportunities present themselves that are too good to pass up.  This past month, I have been working with two start-up companies that I admire. Each […]

  • Oh, Fuuuuuudge!

    December 23, 2010

    Food styling by the extraordinary Meghan Guthrie In the spirit of the holidays, I wanted to share a recipe taught to me by my grandmother, who is something of a culinary genius (from New Orleans, a place with high standards.) She typically takes a good recipe and simplifies it to its most delicious and basic […]

  • Collaborative Fund is up!

    January 20, 2011

    It has been very project-y around here lately! One of these projects just went live, and I wanted to do a quick, predominantly visual post about it. It’s for a new company called  Collaborative Fund. Although the fund is an amalgamation of several people’s ideas, it is really Craig Shapiro’s project. Craig recently stepped down […]

  • Videos on top of videos.

    February 3, 2011

    The WordPress platform—at this stage in its development—is a huge beast, but is also a perfect petri dish for design experimentation. It is super-powerful, advanced, and open source… Also: People like it. Take all of those amazing advantages and add the fact that WordPress trends towards redundancy. Most sites created in WordPress end up looking… well, […]

  • Girl Walk Poster

    March 1, 2011

    Girl Walk // All Day A few days after placing his film-to-be on funding site Kickstarter, my friend Jacob approached me to to create some static visual elements for his project about movement.  Already immensely popular and not even 100% shot yet, Girl Walk, follows freestyle dancer Anne Marsen as she charmingly contorts her way […]

  • Tiny colorful buildings

    March 3, 2011

    Drawing little brightly-colored buildings is one of my favorite ways to pass the time.  (It is the closest that I will ever get to being an architect.)  This obsession first got a platform when working on the hankerchief-map wedding invite and I’ve been able to revisit this indulgence lately while designing packaging, infographics, and stickers for […]

  • Buy art? Prognosticator

    March 4, 2011

    Art fair season has descended upon NYC. In attendance will be collectors, gallerists, artists and art fans galore. Ocular stimulation—the good and the bad—will ensue. This annual ritual is great because it conveniently brings together a ton of new art (excitement!), but it also ends up being very trying at the same time. Walking through […]

  • Sxsw Posters, etcetera

    March 24, 2011

    I sadly missed all of the new music at SxSW (again), but appeared there in spirit via some design goods.  I created posters, banners, stencils, hand fans (who knew?), and postcards listing Dig for Fire’s showcase this year.  You can experience the showcase vicariously through the videos filmed last week—which appear on the front page […]

  • A Paper Record Player

    April 12, 2011

    I just finished up a really fun project—a paper record player wedding invitation! In the booklet-style invitation, a bit of paper-folding amplifies the sound of a sewing needle moving along the grooves of a flexidisc record. The hand-spun record yields a garbled, but scrutable listening of an original song by the couple. It requires a […]

  • Mural from Engravings

    June 29, 2011

    I managed to squeeze in a [relatively] quick personal project/experiment over the past few weeks, combining an interest of mine (rare books) and a domestic void (a blank makeshift wall in the apartment.) Squinting at a master engraver’s work ranks highly on my shortlist of nerdy thrills. These little treasures are hidden within bound volumes […]

  • The Collaborative Home

    July 6, 2011

    I just finished an ambitious infographic for Collaborative Fund envisioning how the concept of collaborative consumption could replace traditional consumption in the average home. Collaborative consumption is a simple idea: use the connecting-power of the internet to help people to share things that they don’t need (or don’t want) to buy—resulting in a more efficient […]

  • Solar Power Pops

    July 29, 2011

    I just designed a bright orange popsicle truck that evangelizes solar energy. It is actually a popsicle truck covered in popsicle-shaped-infographics about solar energy that distributes free popsicles! The multitasking contraption also runs off of solar energy when stopped, effectively demonstrating how solar can power the activity of a bustling kitchen. This fun project, lead […]

  • Neutral Milk Hotel things

    September 27, 2011

    I recently worked on some projects with/for Jeff Mangum of the Neutral Milk Hotel, making things like posters, cards, shirts, and a new website. The new website features unreleased Neutral Milk Hotel songs, a new vinyl box set, a radio show, and a long descent through clouds moving in parallax—check it out!  (Built in MODx.)

  • Talks! & A Recursive Card

    October 11, 2011

    In less than a week, I will bid adieu to Brooklyn to travel to north-central Norway. High up in a mountain town, I will be presenting my work via slideshow+videos for the first time at Grafill Edit (it will be, in fact, the first conference I’ve ever attended as well.) A subsequent, shorter presentation at […]

  • Information, Illustrated

    November 21, 2011

    It is the end of the year already, the perfect time to reflect, to quantify…to make tons of infographics (of course!) This bunch was actually made about a month ago, but are just getting published now. Although perhaps these examples are more like “info-strations” than strict infographics (which is more of a defined, specific thing […]

  • Infographics About $

    February 6, 2012

    I just noticed a trend in my own work (which I’ve  been regrettably slow to post lately…): everything has been “about” the almighty dollar lately.  There’s been more substantial discussion regarding U.S. economic policy in the news— which is increasingly being scrutinized like a machine, whose various features exert invisible, systematic influence over our lives. The […]

  • My TEDx Talk

    February 13, 2012

    I’m happy to report that my TEDx talk from last year is up. (Thanks TEDx Phoenix!) Aside from just showing/explaining pictures, the talk makes the case for creating absurdist/surreal work that disrupts our preconceived notions about the world through small, intimate experiences. This type of work can defy conventional expectations by presenting the hidden “talents” […]

  • Bonafide Merchandise

    February 13, 2012

    A few things that I designed are now for sale on the internet!: a benefit poster and a couple of temporary tattoos. I created a “children’s poster for adults (or for children)” for Help Ink. Proceeds benefit Room to Read, an organization that promotes literacy by improving access to books and education (with a focus […]

  • Curator’s Code

    March 12, 2012

    On Friday, we unveiled a system for attribution on the web called Curator’s Code. Initially, I was ever-so-slightly skeptical about the Curator’s Code. Creating a formalized “system of attribution for internet content” sounded a bit like piling on rules—and perhaps even creating limitations—in the blissfully limitless (and essentially anarchic) space of the internet. And then I […]

  • Paper Brownstones

    March 27, 2012

    “Springtime in New York / when demolishing a building brings the smell of 1890 to the breeze.” —Jonathan Richman, Springtime in New York I recently finished up some press invitations for a Brooklyn Philharmonic concert. They incorporate the borough’s handsomest of street-features: the brownstone row house, as well as historical maps, typography, and a fake-newspaper-as-a-concert-program. Led […]

  • A Parisian Map

    May 29, 2012

    Just returned home from a few weeks traveling and speaking at Semi-Permanent Sydney and Auckland to a luscious pile of printed maps from Herb Lester in my mailbox. Collaborating with the mapmakers a few weeks back, I designed a map along their specific-and-wildy-appropriate theme of “Paris for Pleasure Seekers.” (Why else go to Paris?) Written/researched […]

  • OFFBOOK logo process

    July 13, 2012

    I worked with the team at OFFBOOK last year to create their logo. So when they were planning an episode about logos, they invited me back in for an interview. We chatted a bit about process and about this shorthand-system-of-communication that we call logo design… and we reminisced about just how many different iterations of […]

  • I’m tremendously excited to report that two newspapers that I designed are on display (and FREE for the taking!) in the main atrium of the Museum of Modern Art. For two more days only (and the museum is free on Friday), so go now! (After the 30th, they may be available elsewhere, stay tuned…) You […]

  • Branding "Future-Prediction"

    December 17, 2012

    “As Real as it Gets” is up through Dec. 22 at ApexArt in Tribeca and you should…Go check it out! When you think “future-prediction”… Does a crystal ball or an algorithm flash across your mind? OK… so an algorithm has probably never flashed across anyone’s mind (ever), but the point is that notions of future-prediction […]

  • Buying a Gun in America

    March 20, 2013

    Like many others, I felt a sense of urgency to do something after the Newtown shootings last year, but wasn’t sure what I was qualified to contribute. That’s why I was so excited when Ted Alcorn from Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG)—a non-partisan coalition of 900 mayors who advocate for smarter gun laws—approached me in January to […]

  • Paper Type Experiments

    April 12, 2013

    Excited (and anxious) to be speaking at Typo San Francisco this afternoon. I used the talk as an excuse to try out something that I’ve long intended to play with: paper lettering! Many of the text-only slides in my presentation needed some additional attention. So for each one, I came up with a different, semi-legible […]

  • On Interformat Cooperation and Interspecies Friendship I don’t think that I truly appreciated the difference between ‘what images do’ and ‘what text does’ until I had to write my first artist statement in school. With the words “my work explores the juxtaposition…”, any sort of visual logic took a nose-dive, and never found its written […]

  • For the past month, I’ve been working on a 100%-analog, 100%-paper installation for the New York Public Library. I’ve been finding ways to convert the covers of books into paper sculptures for a window of favorite titles selected by Brainpicking’s Maria Popova (learn more about the project here.) As someone who has spent a disproportionate […]

  • Some longtime friends of mine recently started a company called Tinybop, that creates systems-thinking apps for children. Their first app, The Human Body, launches today and I’m proud to say that I contributed the 200-odd illustrations of bones, veins, nerves, teeth, guts, and chewed-up-food of which it is comprised. Anything that a real body does, […]

  • A paper wheel answering the question: “Should I Take That Job?” About a month and half ago, Adobe contacted me to “make something interesting” for designers attending AIGA’s annual event—pretty much a dream assignment! The project ended up involving two of my favorite things: lo-fi prognostication equipment and paper calculation wheels. A paper calculation wheel is […]

  • New-ish Branding Projects

    November 4, 2013

    Recently, I created new visual identities for some of my favorite people/entities—aiming to pinpoint that key thing (for lack of a better term) that makes them beloved. This type of work means lingering on my own excitement surrounding the subject for an extended period of time…and then doing my best to pare that excitement down […]

  • A Stand-up Desk (Ikea hack)

    December 30, 2013

    With help from metalsmith-extraordinaire Dustin John and better-half Daniel Dunnam, I got to build my dream desk. Specifically, it is a minimalist convertible standing-sitting desk/storage unit made from Ikea cabinets, a top from Lowe’s and a linear actuator. It isn’t perfect*, but it has been awesome to use… and has practically banished the spiritually-degrading work […]

  • “There is no logic that can be superimposed on the city; people make it, and it is to them, not buildings, that we must fit our plans.”  ― Jane Jacobs   Yesterday, the bench outside of Russ & Daughters was the only place to sit. Today, the bagel-and-lox-institution opened their new Orchard Street restaurant to […]

  • A Paper Forest

    May 22, 2014

    Last year, I got to draw 275+ body parts for Tinybop’s very first app, The Human Body. Today, Tinybop released their 2nd app, called PLANTS!. It is basically a working forest in a box (the box, in this case, being an iPad.) It aims to help kids understand that the forest is a system—making nature’s […]

  • Talking While Female

    October 27, 2014

    Most of us have received unsolicited feedback about our speaking voice at some point in our lives, but few are likely to endure the level of scrutiny apportioned to female NPR correspondents—whose voices constitute their public-facing identity. When Kainaz Amaria and Claire O’Neill approached me to animate NPR’s report on Talking While Female, I was […]

  • Where Records come from…

    November 6, 2014

    “They were notorious for making their records out of dirt (literally) from the Milwaukee River.” —Dean Blackwood (Revenant Records) The path that music from the past takes to arrive in our hands today is often so tenuous—the odds so stacked against its documentation (much less its preservation)—that it is truly amazing that we have any […]

  • Creative Residency

    April 30, 2015

    I’ve been using this blog to present completed projects. The internet seems to bend towards “finished.” Which is understandable — unfinished work is tricky to share. Intentions are less evident… and it often involves ugly pictures of plywood. But I think if done right, showing process can cede a bit of psychic authorship to the […]

  • They say that a little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing, but I’m beginning to believe that a little bit of a hunch is far more risky. In the midst of a creative residency awarded by Adobe, my full-time responsibility is basically to explore hunches. On their best days, these inklings illuminate the path […]

  • This Book is a Camera (really)

    November 24, 2015

    Book Camera Book Camera — A dream project turned legit-thing-you-can-buy*! ^ (or make!) For the past couple of months, I’ve been searching for the right sequence of cuts and folds to turn a piece of paper into a camera. Specifically, I wanted to make a working camera within an educational pop-up book—one that connects the […]

  • I’ve been thinking a lot about how dreams blend into waking life for a music video—a project that felt like a bit of a dream itself. If “sentiment without action is the ruin of the soul” (as environmentalist Edward Abbey once remarked), being a designer may provide lifelong cover from such an affliction. The practice […]

  • On Reasoning and Touch

    March 31, 2016

    Ever go back and re-read something you wrote a year ago? It’s handy if you wish to trick yourself into setting fire to the calendar, your responsibilities, and lose a week to re-writing. This article was originally written for Issue 5 of The Manual, but due to a publishing delay, it sat around for a […]

  • The void only you can see

    April 28, 2016

    What to do with wide-open creative freedom?   For the past year, I’ve worked on my own independent projects thanks to a generous pilot program by the software company, Adobe. (More on my Creative Residency with them here.) If handed the freedom to make anything, what would you make?, is a lovely riddle with intimidating […]

  • Experiments, alive!

    August 2, 2016

    A big client project got delayed and some paper-engineering work is stuck in feedback-tennis with the manufacturer. And so: I got to spend much of June and July playing with new-toys-and-techniques-of-interest—to see what they could do. Experimentation and summer are natural allies: no to pre-determined plans, yes to bonding with the physical world, time= “10 […]

  • In light of current circumstances, 75% of proceeds (more if I can swing it) from the show and online sales will go to organizations. (Split between the Southern Poverty Law Center,, and CIEL climate science defense.) Through December 23, 2016: Around & Around at Mule Gallery, SF Wednesday–Friday • 1–6pm Saturday • 12-6pm   ^ […]

  • And Then…

    August 2, 2017

    A quick note to say: a new site is coming really soon by my friends at Oak (pardon the dust and non-responsiveness in the meantime…) I devised the branding for SVA’s Visual Narrative students’ final show—And Then…. I’ve attended in previous years and have been consistently impressed by the remarkably wide (and intrepid) variety of […]

  • “Taste, touch and smell, hearing and seeing, are not merely a means to sensation, enjoyable or otherwise, but they are also a means to knowledge – and are, indeed, your only actual means to knowledge.” —Thomas Aquinas   In the futuristic-sounding year of 2017, I published a pop-up book of mechanical paper tech. Expanding out […]

  • Posters for sale (and free download for DIY printing) here!! We now have Spanish and Chinese language versions as well. So excited that NY Magazine interviewed us too! In an Eater article published late last year, freelance food journalist Tove Danovich wrote this about the stark disconnect between the laws protecting against sexual harassment in […]

  • Optimism

    May 16, 2018

        “…Order comes from chaos and chaos from order, and this harnessed just right…creates art.” —Jerry Saltz on Fiscli & Weiss’s entropic 1987 chain-reaction film, The Way Things Go     —— This stop motion animation was developed for The Universe in Verse, an evening of poetry and science created by Maria Popova on […]

  • Folding as Craft Tech

    December 7, 2018

        “Modern industry saves us endless drudgery, but… it also bars us from taking part in the forming of material and leaves idle our sense of touch, and with it, those formative faculties that are stimulated by it.” —Anni Albers   Two things: 1.) I am organizing a new, experimental course at the School […]

  • Designing a new 18,000 square feet for an old NYC institution   It’s been almost five years since we completed work on Russ & Daughters Cafe—the beloved 105-year-old appetizing shop’s sit-down complement—in 2014. Since then, people have thrown parties there, John Zorn programs a monthly music series with downtown musicians there, and last week’s “Broad […]

  •     C, M, Y (no K!) lightbulbs plus a magnifying glass equals this. Striped light plus a rounded piece of plexiglass equals this.   Adrienne Rich’s poetry is best known for its impassioned critique of oppressive systems (typically: capitalism or the patriarchy.) Her poem, Hubble Photographs: After Sappho, showcases conflicted feelings regarding scientific enlightenment […]

  • (from my tinyletter) I just finished the stop-motion opening title sequence (and social media branding) for New_ Public, a conference about the future of online public spaces happening this week. How can we make open public space on the internet impervious to being coopted by white hate groups? Can these spaces be assembled in a […]