Tag Archive: graphic designer


Finding Inspiration 101

Inspiration for an artist is like fuel to a car. As long as they are filled with it, they will continue to create fantastic work.

But, once that inspiration starts to run low and you can feel it slowly pointing to “empty”, things start to get confusing and your mind turns into a  pile of blank crumpled piece of paper where you can’t even sketch out an idea.

I have recently got out of “artist’s block”, and Im here to tell you how to prevent yourself from getting into it and getting out of it should it happen.

Dont worry this won’t be a long ass post. Just some tips to help you.

Preventing Artist’s Block:

the way our minds work, is way different from how others work, because as artists, we dont usually sit down in a group and jot down ideas, no. Most of our brilliant ideas come from those light bulb moments, where you will be  walking down the street listening to Nas (had to throw that in there), and all of a sudden you stop and start grinning because you just came up with the sickest idea of all. Its those moments that drive you! (Your gasoline)

Write them right away and store it. On your phone, voice note, whatever, just make a record of it. Because after that moment you will notice that all of the ideas will be pouring in, and you have to be ready.

How does this help prevent AB?

Going back to the car metaphor, when your ideas start pouring in, its like driving on the autobahn and you are going 180 km/hr. And once you start forgetting the ideas that are coming out, its like hitting a pothole on this road and it slows you down. This can easily discourage any artist because now you have to hit the brakes and try to remember what was the idea before the last. Soon this will turn into frustration, further leading to Artist’s block.

So write everything down! Who cares if it looks like chicken scratch, you’ll decode it later.

-Ignore what everyone says when you are going through pre-Artist’s Block. The last thing you want to do is to create someone elses idea. It probably an artist’s pride thing, because at the end of the day, its only a true success if it came straight from your mind and heart. So don’t waste your time discussing it with others.

-Always remain present.

What the hell does that mean?? It means exactly what it says. Don’t get too caught up in “future ideas”. The problem with most of us is that we focus too much on the end result of things and we lack focus on the actual work that needs to be done presently.

So take one idea at a time. Trust yourself. You came up with the present idea already, what makes you think you won’t have a thousand more later on?

So remain present.

Getting out of AB:

If you ever get stuck in a ditch that we call Artist’s Block this is what you need to do first: stop thinking!

Like I mentioned before we tend to spiral and curl into a ball of frustration, once we can’t get an idea out.  So what I do is stop thinking. How to stop thinking? I usually start listening to the noises that surround me, even listen to my own breathing. relax….this usually helps you step out of your state of AB. Now, I suggest you don’t do anything for a few moments. Just relax. What this is doing is resetting your thought patterns. Basically pressing the good ol’ ctrl+alt+del on the mind. Let it reset and start thinking of all the great work you’ve come up with in the past. Think of how good it felt to show people your work and the great comments you got for it.  What this does is it starts your mind on a positive path, and you will see from there that your thought patterns are more workable.

I know I may sound like a spiritual teacher but what you didnt know is that most artists are spiritual people but they just don’t know it.

-listen to music. One of my favorite ways to untangle my thoughts. Its always the same pattern for me. Start off with some Tribe Called Quest, and end it off with some Talib Kweli. Do the same! Listen to your favorite albums and just take it all in. This is just another way to reset your mind.

So I’m hoping these tips helped you out. What I would highly suggest is to maybe tweak what I’ve told you to your likings. Keep in mind that this works for me because I have observed myself in the Artists Block stages and I’ve noted things that worked for me to get out of it.

 

VECTORS VECTORS!!!

I have to apologize again for the lack of posts lately. We have officially moved to a bigger location. I will be honest with you, we were located in a flea market that I am extremely grateful for but we have come to a point where we needed to expand. So for the next few days posts will be rare, but I will try to keep you all posted as much as I can.

Anyhow, I have come across some great sites that offer free vectors!!! Yes for all you graphic designers out there ready made vectors is like finding hidden 1up mushroom in Mario Bros. (too old school??)

If they do have a donate option, send them a little something if you can.

Enjoy: Vectors

Notorious

This week we remember one of the greatest emcee of all time. We all know that his career was short lived and if he was still here today, hip-hop would probably be in a different position. You know you are a true legend when 15 years after you pass, your music still echoes in clubs and on the radio, with a fair amount of video plays on tv.

Now one of my favorite dj’s, J.period, has released a 2 volume set mixtape, and although I may not know J personally, I will give him some promo on my blog, cus this guy is a monster with the mixtapes.

And the one thing that I love about this dude is that he keeps hiphop real. Most of the tapes he comes out with, he puts them up for free download, and the quality of the tapes are sell worthy, but thats why I say he is real, cus hip-hop was meant to be told, not to be sold, right?

Enjoy the free download

Positivi-tees…

Yes it has been a few days since my last post. I’ve been very busy, and I will post what has been happening at Underground Creations soon.

Anyhow, in today’s fashion world we can all say that there is a handful of tshirt lines out there. We all notice that everyone is knocking off everyone and no one really stands out. There are a few out there, but they are completely in the underground and its hard to discover them. Trust me I know.

Well let me shed some light on a company I’ve had the pleasure designing for: BPlusCLothing

The whole concept for their clothing is simple. Taking inspiring words from some of the worlds top icons, and passing the message on through their clothing.

I think its a great thing that they are doing and its going against the grain on what clothing lines usually go for in terms of concept.

Other than the great images that these shirts have, the words are what we should focus on. I have always said that one of the most powerful things in this world, are the words that we put out into the universe.

BplusCLothing will be available online and stores soon and we will definitely keep you posted.

But for now, go check out there stuff: http://www.bplusclothing.com/

The world of Art

I had the pleasure of working with Art at a denim company where we pumped out graphics like there was no tomorrow. He was probably the only guy I knew that painted and had a passion for art other than myself. After we both left the company I’ve followed his work and have notice his gradual progression. This guy paints portraits and helmets for race car drivers, we are not talking about some no name drivers, we are talking about big time names here.

His style is very unique and I have to admit  he did have an influence in not only my own style, but also helped me develop the eye for graphics in fashion and in airbrushing .

He has done hundreds of helmets, hundreds of paintings, and it doesnt stop there.

 

Go check out his site.  www.artrotondo.com

I know we have all thought of it, of how great it would be for CS5 to be available for the iPad.  We have already seen what Wacom did with their tablets so why not Apple? Im guessing it could either be that these programs are just too strong for the iPad, or its actually in the works and they are trying to milk it with the first and second gen iPad.

To be honest, Im not sure I would enjoy using a touch screen to design stuff. After a while it would get tiring and it seems that the risk of arthritis and carpal tunnel heighten, no? Have you ever listened to how many times you click your mouse when you are designing something? I swear we go at 80 clicks per minute. Thats a lot of wear and tear on your hand. LOL

It would extremely  be convenient for those minor touch ups that you need to do before sending it off to the client.

Im sure some of you have those clients that call you outta no where and ask to “just center my logo a little bit more”, and you are no where near your desktop and powering up your laptop takes too long. If you had the iPad just turn it on boom boom boom, send and done. (Yes, that fast lol!!)

I have a friend that works for apple development, and word has it that Apple is working on an Ipad Pro. I got no official specs on it but this may be our answer. We will see. Apparently it wont be out till Fall 2012.

So I guess for now we can just sit and wait and let technology run its course.

Mac vs PC

It has been long debated on which computer is better…Mac or Pc’s.  Well here’s a better question for you: Which computer is better for graphic designers? (cue in dramatic music….)

In the late 90’s I was in college doing a program called Illustration and Design. A hybrid program that taught you everything that has to do with art. From drawing to painting, to airbrushing all the way to  graphic designing. Now in the first semester we started using photoshop 5.5 and illustrator version 8 or 9, on a computer called a Macintosh.

At the time I didnt think it wouldve been such a big deal on which computer you were designing on. And I dont think it really did till maybe around 2002. (this is just a guesstimate of when i started to notice the epic battle starting to brew up)

Now Ive designed on both a pc and a mac and besides the different key combinations for actions, they both perform well……Im lying. I found that working on pc’s, the programs made the computer crash a few times during long hours of work, and this can be due to the fact that Creative Suite programs require a lot of multitasking and RAM. On the other hand, for some reason, a Mac takes care of shit. And I say it like that because based on my experience, my Macbook Pro has probably worked 72 hours straight at most with out even a single reset or glitch. And I stand by Apple because they stand strong even when you abuse them (not physically). But….I’m not knocking PC’s. Yes the Creative Suite programs are more expensive than the actual computer but, its affordable if you cannot dish out the 2000$ for a mac.

I would probably get a pc as a back up should my mbp breaks down. FYI I’ve had my laptop since 2008, and not one problem besides me dropping it which caused the housing to slightly crack.  LOL

And to finally end my biased post on this topic, it seems nowadays that people automatically assume that graphic designers, all have Macs. I dont know how this came about, but let me tell you this. It bothers me a whole lot when i see people with Macbook Pros, and find out that they are not designers. I mean, why do you need such a powerful laptop when the most technical program you use is Excel! Lmao

Mac vs Pc = Cool vs Practical


Homeless Designer…

This goes out to all you graphics designers, illustrators, and painters out there.

There’s this rumor going around that designers come a dime a dozen. And I’ve actually heard that slip out of previous people Ive worked for.

Now here’s our struggle. People seem to believe that what we do is so easy and that it takes no time to finish. What people dont understand is that we have gone through schooling (some of us not), and have lost years of sleep to become this good in order to complete a job in no time. And not to mention develop a sharp sense of imagination so we can mentally put together your design.

Im just gonna go on a small rant and say that I cannot stand when people tell you how much they will pay you for a contract and don’t even ask you if its fair.

Ive been in the game for 9 years and if a client wants to pay me 25$ for a logo, I hand them a stick man.

Side note: Professional Graphic Designer should be paid minimum 30$/hour. MINIMUM. And when I say professional, I mean Professional. Not those people that learned designing of YOUTUBE.  Yall give us a bad name, so go back to the etch a sketch and just stop it!

Now this shirt I have created for all you freelance, or full time 9-5 designers who get underpaid. You know you deserve more. It seems that your artwork is only worth millions once you are dead.

Production for this shirt is now happening and will be available next week. For pre-orders please email me or you can click on the pay pal link which will be available in the link above “Limited Edition”

or just click here

For all you designers out there, heres a little treat. We search the deepest parts of the net to find great sites for vectors, cus’ there are times when us artists do get a little lazy to retrace images on Illustrator. And sometimes hitting that good ol’ “live trace” button just doesnt give you the results you want.

Well here’s some links for you. some of you may know that but those who don’t…..enjoy!

http://www.blog.spoongraphics.co.uk/freebies/huge-collecton-of-tshirt-design-mockup-templates

http://www.greatvectors.com

http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/11/12/swirls-vector-illustrations-set/

http://www.vecteezy.com/

http://www.brandsoftheworld.com (need to register but thats it, free baby free!!)