I wrote an essay published recently by the journal Design & Culture. The abstract is below. The article may be downloaded here:
This article encourages instructors to redesign the classroom. Finding the balance between service to students and to one’s own work has become increasingly difficult for professors. A recent overhaul of the BFA program in the Graphic Design Department at The Rhode Island School of Design has created an opportunity for faculty to bring their own areas of interest into the classroom. The results so far have been more interpersonal connection, more diverse outcomes to projects, and an agile core curriculum.
Profile of RISD Graphic Design from AIGA’s Eye on Design magazine. Read the story
I’ll be on a panel with the heads of Parsons and CCA (Yu June Park and Rachel Berger, respectively) to talk about design education. Moderated by Juliette Cezzar and Brin Smith. Hosted by AIGA NY.
Monday, June 6, 2016, 6:30–8:30pm.
Starr Foundation Hall, Room UL102
63 5th Avenue
I just returned from Lebanese American University, where I gave two lectures (one at each campus) and am writing up a program review. Thanks to everyone at LAU for an excellent few days … an opportunity to think about graphic design education and, in particular, its place in the Middle East.
I gave a 20 slide Pecha Kucha talk about the HTML Output course at AIGA New Orleans in October. See presentation notes from myself and other speakers
Mitch Golstein, co-founder of the podcast ThroughProcess, came to Providence to talk with Professor Lucinda Hitchcock and me about design education.
I was asked by Design Observer to contribute the story behind the making of my 2004 graduate thesis, Take Your Time.
Thanks to the students and faculty for a great visit to the Art Department at the University of Delaware.
Four HTML Patterns, the for/with/in book and demo video are on display at RISD’s Architecture Dept. Gallery until March 20th. The show is titled “Six Lines,” and accompanied a panel with RISD professors on their relationship to tools. More information and documentation is available at risdtool.org
I had a much needed snow break at the California College of the Arts this week. There I talked with students and faculty of the Graphic Design Department about how the web browser can be used as a general purpose design tool. Photo via CCA Facebook page
I’ll be giving a 15-minute overview of my work in designing information, information systems and organizational systems. Three other speakers will be in attendance, followed by a panel with all of us. At Aurora in downtown Providence. Thursday, Sept. 25 from 4-6pm.
More info at http://designweekri.com/events/
I led a panel about design & education with Ellen Lupton, Jessica Helfand, Prem Krishnamurthy and Andrew Blauvelt. It was part of a daylong series of conversations in the “Critical Encounters With Type, Image and Print” program at the RISD Museum in April of 2014
From the Magazine: “Identity, wayfinding and daily guide for Locally Made, the RISD Museum’s exhibition of Providence-area contemporary art. The daily guide and wall treatments make sense of 300 artists and 180 live performances scheduled over four months. The guide is printed on demand from a high-speed thermal receipt printer on blue paper. The title signage uses the receipt rolls, anchoring the printing process to the entry of the exhibition, offering an expressive and joyful tone.” Typefaces: Fort, Perfin, Simplon.
Designed in collaboration with six fellow Design Office members. Learn more
I was awarded The Design Innovation Grant from the Rhode Island State Council for the Arts. More information and the full list of grantees from 2014
Visit RISD Works on North Main Street in Providence to buy one of five cards designed by Design Office members. I submitted the first and the third card pictured, both patterns created in the web browser.
See the original post on Design Observer
I will be giving a lecture as part of Brown University Library’s Digital Scholarship Lecture Series. I will show my work designing data-driven software systems for designers, educators and the general public.
A WordPress theme to encourage sharing and discussion within the classroom and between institutions.
More information at charrette.ws
My fellow members of The Design Office and I have just finished designing, producing and installing the exhibition graphics and a print-on-demand daily guide for the RISD Museum’s upcoming show, Locally Made.
Please visit the show from July 18 until November 3rd, 2013. More images to come.
More information and a list of artists available at the RISD Museum website
The design of the Skolos-Wedell Highsmith poster and bookmark project received a “bone” from the Boston chapter of the AIGA. The cast-iron “Best of New England” awards are given to top design projects (of all sorts) created in the last two years in New England.
The 2013 contest was judged by Lucille Tenazas, Elliot Earls, and Stewart Smith
More information at http://boneshow.org/
I am pleased to be a part of Michigan State’s Art/Art History/Design Lecture series for this year. I’ll be lecturing on January 31 at 7pm in South Kedzie Hall.
I will have two photographs on exhibit at the Providence Preservation Society’s annual “Ten Most Endangered Properties” exhibit. I was asked to photograph the George C. Arnold building on Washington Street in downtown Providence. Both images were photographed with a large format field camera on Kodak film and printed at The Design Office.
An opening reception will be held at the Brick School House, 24 Meeting Street, on Thursday, November 8, 6:00–8:00 p.m. The event and reception are free and open to the public.
I’ll be lecturing on WordPress for Teachers on Saturday, October 27 at WordCamp Providence. I’ll share how I’ve been integrating WordPress as a classroom accessory at RISD. The talk will be about pedagogy, design and WordPress theme development.
Video from the event:
I have moved The Design Office from the 4th floor to the 3rd floor of 204 Westminster. There are 12 desks and 2,500sq/ft of workspace. As part of this move, I commissioned Anther Kiley to design a sign that reinforces the architectural distinction of the building and directs visitors to the building entrance with an arrow. During this process, two RISD student groups became a part of the burgeoning arts building on the first floor. We hope the gallery and materials resale shop settles in for the long term.
I am pleased to announce that I will be joining the full-time faculty in graphic design at The Rhode Island School of Design. I will continue to work as an independent designer and run The Design Office.
Join me from 5:30 until 6pm, Thursday July 19, 2012 to discuss the timeless considerations of letter forms in a Greek carved stone tablet.
Picture from the event (courtesy of the RISD Museum):
New Vintage Digital Vernacular Letters
The show will run from February 1st – March 31st. The opening party is Friday February 3rd
The free drinks will begin promptly at 18:00.
From the gallery website: “Thanks to digital cameras, smart phones, nearly unlimited storage space, and online social sharing it is easier than ever to capture, collect, and share images. Particularly exciting is the now relatively mainstream pursuit of photographing interesting found type and lettering. Whether it is encountered in one’s neighborhood or stumbled upon while traveling, there is seemingly no end to unique letters to be collected. This phenomenon is illustrated through dozens of blogs dedicated to found letters, to Flickr’s countless tagged images of type, and by sites like we love typography – currently with 12,000+ curated images.”
I’m pleased to announce that Contact Sheet is ready to use. After months of testing on The Design Office website, the open-source plug-in is documented and downloadable at http://cs.thedesignoffice.org.
I’m happy to announce that we’ve relaunched The Design Office website, still at http://thedesignoffice.org
The website provides a better look inside the space by showing off its physical environs, profiling the people who are or have been involved since the beginning, providing specifics on how any designer can get involved, and listing a catalog of member-initiated projects.
The website also launches several projects and initiatives:
I was one of ten photographers asked by The Providence Preservation Society to photograph a building they deemed vulnerable to demolition. I chose the Teste Block building around the corner from The Design Office at Weybosset and Dorrance Streets. Taken with my Linhof 4×5 camera, this 20×25″ print shows the ultra-thin building from the 4th story of the Dorrance building nearby.
The opening is Thursday, November 17 from 6pm until 8pm at the RISD architecture department at 231 South Main Street.
The show runs until December 3rd. Do try to make it. The hours are listed on the PPS website.
Driving tour of eight residential structures in the Providence area designed by Mr. Rakatansky, with exclusive access to some interiors, and exterior tours of others. Tour participants will provide their own vehicles and will be given a map of all locations, including tour start, upon ticket purchase.
This is a paid event. More information on the tour from Docomomo.
Below is the itinerary for the October 9th tour:
View Docomomo Ira Rakatansky Tour in a larger map
In reflecting on Steve Jobs’ many accomplishments, I return regularly to his role as a leader. When considered alongside other visionaries responsible for ground-breaking designs (think Frank Lloyd Wright and the Eames), Jobs also ran a multi-national public company. As his career progressed, he became the actual, and adopted, chief of more and more people: from geeks, to designers, to animators, to musicians, to telecom workers, to retailers, etc. Whether they worked for Apple or not, people associated with those fields voluntarily chose him as their leader — me included.
Jobs’ passion and drive was enough to attract followers, but with blockbuster product after product coming out, he had everyone listening. What makes a new Apple product great is that it’s unimaginable before it’s released, but once it is, we can’t think of a better solution. This happened again and again, always with Jobs on stage grinning enthusiastically as he revealed world-changing designs. You can relive these moments in the now legendary videos of the release of the Macintosh and the iMac and the iPod Nano. In his Facetime chat with Jonathan Ive during the iPhone 4 release, he said that he grew up with the Jetsons and that the day had come to make video calls. We all smiled with him. It was as if he had landed on the moon. But unlike space travel, he was going to take us there with him.
The emotional void from Jobs’ death makes me ask questions of those who remain on top — the elected politicians, heads of universities, corporations and non-profits. Do they skate — as Jobs and hockey player Wayne Gretzky once did — “to where the puck is going to be, and not to where it has been”? What visions do our leaders have? Where do their passions lie? Will they learn from Steve Jobs to not conduct polls, or cut corners, or make excuses, or settle for less? If they do, I will support them as a voter, as a customer or as an admirer.
Rest in peace, Steve, and thank you for your leadership and inspiration.
I am moderating a panel this Sunday that includes top practitioners in the field of communication-based design: Julia Vasker from Hyperakt, Scott Stowell from Open, Lindsay Kinkade from Little Giant and Steve Duenes from The New York Times graphics department. The panel is part of the Brown and RISD student-run conference, “A Better World by Design,” a completely student-organized conference that places innovation and impact over individual success (their words).
We’ll be at Brown’s Granoff Center, Studio 1, on Sunday October 2 from 9:30am to 10:45am.
You must register in Salomon Hall (Brown University green) to attend — starting at 8:30 am on Sunday or from 8am to 6pm on Saturday.
Updated Oct. 4
Design process is not a conveyer belt, but a group that works together from beginning
Julia Vakser couldn’t remember the last time one person took a project from start to finish. I wonder how collaboration works as equals? Subcontracting is one thing, but “co” laboring is another.
When you start out, don’t just take work to pay the bills. You might find yourself doing that 15 years later. Scott Stowell
Do what you’re passionate about says Lindsay Kinkade
Design is a conversation not an end form. Lindsay is wrestling with how to show the work she’s doing because it involves facilitation and culture change.
Design is about systems/modules/parts that can be put to work. Gone is the perfect end form. Scott spoke of making posters like churning butter — not so common.
Concept (Scott) and content (Steve Duenes) are way more important than the end form. If the client is talking about color, then the concept is home free. (Scott)
Scott showed a big green dot as a solution to a logo for “the big green planet.” He said there were many proposals just like it, but they liked his the most. I wonder was it the presentation? The people? The portfolio backing it up?
“Not all films need to be documentaries”
Work that ends up not as you want can simply not be promoted … except if you’re The New York Times, then you have to wait a day to disown it.
Workers after Sept. 11 cut out New York Times maps and used them onsite to do their work
Lindsay’s work on health communication that reduces errors in hospitals
If you want to change the world, you need to know what’s going on in the world said Lindsay. She and Scott praised the New York Times’ work.
Support the AS220 darkroom and walk home with one of the 150 photographic prints donated. I submitted an unpublished photograph from the Ira Rakatansky monograph. Works from Jack Pierson, Nan Goldin, and the sea of local Providence talent are also available and on view from now until the September 24th lottery.
Register for “Web Design” and “Data-Drive Design”, two courses that I’m teaching this summer as part of RISD’s Summer Institute for Graphic Design Studies. Find out more
Update: Web Design course is full!
Update: Web Design class site
This domain turns 14 years old today. I still have the original portfolio page archived, although the links don’t work. That’s the original jc green (as it was referred to).
I’m celebrating domain registration renewal day by launching my archived portfolio using the Flatfile website template. Featuring a slightly updated jc green, the site shows a decent overview of the last 14 years. Particularly light are graduate school projects from 2002-2004, works from Italy in 2005 and my recent works with Brown University’s Watson Institute.
An anniversary waits for no one, so today this launches, and “tomorrow” I’ll add some more content.
Thanks for visiting.
After 9 months in the making, I am happy to introduce Flatfile, an affordable website solution for artwork.
The unofficial catalog is John’s submission to the Biennial. Created in three days, the Flatfile kiosk organizes more than 200 artists and 400 photographs. Visit the RISD Museum before March 20 to see the project.
I’ll be presenting 20 slides at 20 seconds a slide at AS220 on Feb. 23. Exact time to come. And February 24 is RISD Faculty Biennial, where you’ll see Flatfile in action as the unofficial catalog of the 205 works in the show.
Experiments with 3-D typography from Yale have been included in the book Font Family published by Index Books in Barcelona.
New York buyers can pick up the Rakatansky monograph at the MoMA store in Soho.
Three of my photographs are in the second volume of The Encyclopedia Project. Published out of Los Angeles by former Brown University fiction students, the book integrates fiction, poetry and visual art to make part reference/part literary journal.
I designed the site for performance artist Marc Horowitz’s latest project, “The Advice of Strangers.”
Starting today for one month, he’ll be asking you to help him figure out what to do with his life. He posts questions and possible outcomes, users vote.
RISD Alumni Lecture Series
Ira Rakatansky ’42 ARCH
Mentored by Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer, RISD and Harvard Alumnus Ira Rakatansky’s architecture celebrated the best of the Modern movement.
Join us for cocktails and conversation with Ira, RISD Architecture Head Lynnette Widder and Critic John Caserta, the co-editors of Ira Rakatansky: As Modern As Tomorrow, a new monograph in the RISD Architecture Series.
Cocktails at 5:30, to be followed by a lecture and book signing at 6:30.
Oct 27, 2010, 5:30 – 8:00pm
Chace Center Lobby/Metcalf Auditorium
The RISD Museum
20 North Main Street
Letterboxes has a page in the Jeanette Abbink and Emily CM Anderson’s book 3-D Typography. The book is full of projects showing type off the page.
At noon on Thursday, October 28, 2010, we will print the poem “Fall Leaves” by Brazilian designer Guilherme Falcão out of our window in downtown Providence. Written in response to our call for submissions, “Fall Leaves” is 2-feet wide by 24-feet long and will take about two hours to print from our 4th floor office at 204 Westminster down to just above street level.