yeah i agree! also damiencorrell's printalloverme shirt is in there, in general i love the art direction except maybe the animation is overkill… but overdoing it is sort of katy’s whole thing. this is a masterpiece compared to her “ROAR” video. good job team.
I got to meet Adam Kurtz this weekend, who despite his balloon, is not an asshole and a rather nice individual. He’s one of the people who really inspires me in this messy place called the internet, right in line and in ways that authors and artists Austin Kleon and Jessica Hagy have. There’s something so frank, funny, and transparent in the work he creates; I wish more people followed suit.
Anyways, it’s really awkward and awesome meeting someone who you feel like you know after following their work on the internet. But awkwardness typically leads to really interesting things.
Adam’s book is coming out in October and you should definitely pre-order it here. I did a few weeks ago and I can’t wait to read it.
Adam - thanks for being so friendly and for smiling for a photo. :)
wowwwww so nice! i had a really nice time at pete’s mini zine fest, it’s always a smaller, cuter event and a good chance to meet and actually talk to people. meghan had a super sweet camera and came through taking photos. a perfect document of a great afternoon. thanks!
Anonymous said: Will you talk about your time at UMBC? Why you might have liked and disliked it? and specifically it's visual arts program.
Feel like I say this a lot, but I prefer questions like this to not be anonymous. I’ll reply directly, or email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) — I actually will reply!
So, UMBC. This was a great school for me, and I directly attribute a lot of my current life to my time there. It’s also the only college I applied to, someone told me they had a design program and University of Maryland didn’t. It turned out to be a very good choice, because the smaller size allowed me to really flourish. It’s easier to accomplish more when you get specialized attention and there’s less competition.
The Visual Arts program was pretty good. That is how I will describe it. Art education is strange, because you can teach methodology, technique, and history, but you can’t teach vision or talent. You can’t grade creativity, just problem-solving. I had some art professors that I loved (Peggy Re, Laure Drogoul, Guenet Abraham) and others I didn’t care for. Design moves fast and I found that some professors were more in tune with modern software and others threw you into the deep end. Both approaches work but your success depends on how you learn.
Other art programs are definitely a stronger foundation. But it’s undergrad. You’re going to mess up, you’re going to be busy learning about yourself. UMBC is an environment full of people vastly different than you are. Hang out with athletes and public policy nerds and biologists. Take courses that have nothing to do with what you think art is. Don’t take “History of Music” as a “soft option” Humanities course, it’s a trap! There’s also a very strong Computer Science department and you should be learning as much about web development as you can. Then consider an MFA from another institution to get real arty if you need to later. I wish I had better programming skills. I am considering an MFA myself sometime.
I will say this every single time I talk about UMBC: Most of my education came from working at commonvision. I learned practical skills, designing with production in mind, managing actual deadlines, dealing with clients in a “safe” environment, and benefitted from a ton of smart people around me. We had a ton of fun, we planned and curated events. I chaired Art Week in 2009. I made my first postcard designs at commonvision, I printed my first Unsolicited Advice planner there. I’m not saying that “everything I’ve ever done is because of commonvision,” but I’m also not saying that. It was the single most important part of my time at UMBC.
But really, no matter what you do or where you go, you need to involve yourself. You will get out what you put in. If you want to coast and get a piece of paper, go for it. But you’re wasting your time. I did everything from campus radio to a recruitment web series where I hung out with the college president on the roof. I designed the student handbook & probably a hundred posters, flyers, and signs. I got to explore my own styles and see them plastered around campus. I ate a lot of free popcorn. UMBC gave me a ton, but I can confidently say I gave plenty back.