Partners In Design


ATW Concept Art

Here's a sample spread for the album art I am working on. In case everyone didn't check my last post, I am working on my friend's band's album art, meaning illustrating and designing the layout of life. The theme is this young boy traversing the woods in search for the truth. Along the way, he runs into "alternate truths" or downright lies. By the end of the album booklet, he discovers the truth.

So let me know what you think guys! Again, this spread may or may not be used in the final product. Depends on what my friend agrees on :-P

Steve Defrank

My first year at SVA, I was reluctantly introduced to the world of sculpture. Until the point that i was thrust into a world of three dimensions, i had only understood art on my own terms. I only saw my art as being a 2 dimensional representation of my thoughts and imagination. If not for being under the tutelage of a great sculptor, I would never had taken to the mediums and never reached a new level of potential. Because of this man, I was able to (in some cases begrudgingly) create and mold worlds I had never thought possible. And in thinking about this man this morning for some odd reason, I knew I owed him a great deal for opening me up and showing me possibilities I had ignorantly shied away from. I will always owe him my ability to think outside the box, figuratively and literally, and for being an inspiration without even trying. His last words to me before leaving his class will stick with me for years and years to come:

"Laz, I will say this. In my class you were a phoenix. You crashed and burned but then came to life and created some of the most inspired things I've seen in a long while from a student."

Thank you to Steve Defrank, a sculptor who has done some amazing work using "Lite Brights" pegs and lightboxes to create large lite bright paintings with social commentary themes and political messaging. Take a look, it's some really beautiful work in a very different medium.


Why Can't We All Be Friends?

Why can't the east coast and the west coast get along? Here are two major brands that market their products under different names on each coast. I bet there are more. I understand brand loyalty is important- but is it really worth all the work? In the case above, these two companies have to maintain two identical websites where the only difference is the product name. If you're feeling really board, check out the following:

Edy's vs. Dreyer's
Hellmann's vs. Best Foods

I especially encourage you to venture to the video section of Edy's/Dreyer's and watch how they had to produce two of every video with different logos on the sets and in the script.

What every NYC-based studio SHOULD be like.

Shalimar, when is TVP doing their cover of La Vida Loca?

Everyone should check out the other videos from this girl (and the company she works for) because they're quite amusing, and most everyone in them is attractive and fun.


Mini Challenge

"Caption This" Challenge

'Caption This' Challenge:

Oven Madness

Mini Challenge

Laz found this picture and I just thought it would be something funny to do. So much can be interpreted from it, I want everyone to come up with the funniest dialog bubble they can and repost it.

(And if you read this blog and would like to share your dialog bubble, email me at with yours and I will post it)

What Language Looks Like

VIA Debbie Millman

Brilliant Video


aTw Concept Sketches

I've been asked to illustrate the album art for my friend's band, Against The Wall. These are some of the solutions I've come up with so far. The main idea is that there is this little boy and he is wanting to discover the truth (the name of the album is also "The Truth"). I see it in my head that the boy goes through the "dark" woods, and by the end of the cd booklet, finds what he is looking for.

Any input is much appreciated, as I have to present ideas to the band soon.


Some sketches

Receipt Challenge: Houston's

Total mehness!

Receipt Challenge: Linens & Things

Receipt Challenge

I wish I was on crack, so I could have a good excuse for this.


Alex is fired.

For making me crack up at work.

Can you answer 18 questions about the first friend on your top? Don't change your top friends, and answer 18 questions about that first person!

1) Name?
Partners In Design -Shalimar, Laz, and Paul

2) What is their sexual orientation?
We are potatoes.

3)Where did you meet?
Shalimar and Laz I met in high school and Paul through Shal.

4) Is this person one of your friends?
Yup :-)

5) Would you date this person?
I am Shalimar's whore and am marrying Laz for citizenship. Paul doesn't like that I am a foreigner.

6)Where did this question go?

7) Is this person older than you?
No I am the oldest of the bunch actually

8) when is the last time you saw this person?
I saw Shalimar and Laz last Sat, and Paul on Thursday

9) Do you miss them?

10) Are you related to this person?

11) Do you have nicknames for each other?
many things I can't say in public

12) Is that person bringing sexy back?

13) Do you think that person will re post this?
maybe Shalimar... maybe

14) Why is this person #1 on your top?
Because Partners In Design saved me from my stupid artist's block! Yayie!

15) Have you seen this person cry?

16) Do you know this persons last name?
Yes I know them all!

17) What's something the person is obsessed with?

18) Does this person make you laugh?
I've exploded twenty times now


Creatures From Many Lands: Unicorn Cyclops

Areas of Design/ Featured Artist

This month, has selected me to be their featured artist. I'd like to thank the site for considering and selecting me. Take a gander at their site, it's definetly pretty nifty. The direct link to the page is below:

Copyrights: Do more bad than good?

I just finished reading a short blurb on copyrights and all the subsequent comments resulting from the blurb on the Drawn! blog. Basically, this guy named Pollock (ironically his name is the same as the famous abstract expressionist's) says the optimum time for a copyright to last is 14 years (based on his calculations).

It’s easy enough to find out how long copyrights last, but much harder to decide how long they should last—but that didn’t stop Cambridge University PhD candidate Rufus Pollock from using economics formulas to answer the question. In a newly-released paper, Pollock pegs the “optimal level for copyright” at only 14 years.

Pollock’s work is based on the promise that the optimal level of copyright drops as the costs of producing creative work go down. As it has grown simpler to print books, record music, and edit films using new digital tools, the production and reproduction costs for creative work in have dropped substantially, but actual copyright law has only increased.

Here is more of that article. Now... as an artist, I think 14 years for a copyright is a ridiculously short amount of time. It's unfair that an individual creator cannot hold the rights to his or her intellectual property for at least the length of his or her lifetime. Once I die, you can do whatever you want (besides acknowledging it's based off my original work). To be fair, Pollock does mention that under his system, you can re-apply for an extension on your copyright. And I agree that it's odd for companies to be considered "legal entities" and own copyrights of cartoon mice and bunny rabbits for eternity. But someone did create those cartoons. I think once you die, it should fall into public domain. I wanted to make a graphic novel based on this story called the Martian Odyssey, but it's not public domain yet, so I'd have to find the author's estate and not only ask for permission (not that I would claim the story as my own so that would be fine in and of itself) but I most likely have to pay royalties, as his copyright isn't over for another few years.... with his family holding the rights it might even be longer. So I was forced to drop that project. So I can see the issue on both sides, but I also think short copyright periods aren't beneficial to artists who want to make money off their own work. What do you guys think?


Jo Chen

One of Comic Book's most prominent and powerful female artists, Jo Chen

Joshua Middleton

Below is some beautiful work by one of my favorite artistic contributors to comics now.
Joshua Middleton

Spotlight: Ana Mendieta

Today, As I was asked to list some American Artists that inspired me, I was struck with the realization that there truly aren't many American artists out there that bring that kind of creativity out of me. Through my web of thoughts, I was brought to remembering my first time being interested in the art of my heritage. I had a professor at SVA, Alejandra Munizaga (an accomplished installation artist), who became the first to really push me to embrace the art of my nationality. I'm Cuban-American, and my family is all from either Cuba or Spain. And it wasn't until the point of being pushed that I was able to see what I'd kept myself very far from. I have a family history, I come from a very specific line of individuals that have a culture all their own. And although I was not born in that time or country, I am still affected by it and have seen it's affect on my life in small, subtle ways.

One of the first artists that I came across, due to an experiment put upon me from the very same professor, was a fantastic sculptor/photographer/painter from Cuba: Ana Mendieta. Mendieta was born in Havana, Cuba but moved to the United States at a young age.At 13, she and her older sister were exiled from Cuba because her family opposed the revolutionary government. They were placed in foster care in Iowa through Operation Peter Pan run by the U.S. government. She studied in the Intermedia Area of The University of Iowa in the late 1960s. Her life in Iowa City included a few years teaching art at Henry Sabin Elementary School in the mid-1970s.

Much of Mendieta's work had a feminist political message. She made an abrupt change to performance art in 1972 and most of her interventions, performance pieces and cine films were made between 1972 and 1978. A common theme in her performance art was violence against the female body. She often went for the shock factor in representing sexual abuse and many of her performances involved significant quantities of animal blood.

Later Mendieta moved on to leaving her mark on the environment, most particularly in her silueta pieces which typically involved carving her imprint into sand or mud, making body prints or painting her outline or silhouette onto a wall.

She died on 8 September 1985 in New York falling from a 34th floor apartment in Greenwich Village. Eight months earlier Mendieta had married the minimalist sculptor Carl Andre. Andre was tried and acquitted of her murder - during the trial he described her death as suicide. (Thanks to Wikipedia for this Bio)

She was a very accomplished and intense artist who left her mark on the art world and really represented the Cuban culture in an inspiring way. Below are some of her works:

Great Work.

Some great work by Mitchell Mclain

Phil Hansen

Found this on Digg, thought it was interesting.

Worky Worky

Screenshot from work...clicky clicky!


Spilled Oil

Check out this really cool PSA, created by Make.


PID Challenge

It is with thoughtless disregard to Alex's glacially slow response to her own challenge that I post our next PID Challenge assignment...

This should be simple and quick.

The next time you get a receipt, don't throw it away. Your challenge is to re-design that receipt- with the same exact information and in the same exact size and format. Everything else is up for grabs, any style, any material. If you want to turn everything into pictures instead of words- that's fine (as long as it's just as informative as the original words).

You're not restricted by receipt printer "technology", pretend this is for a client who wants to re-invent the whole concept of retail paperwork, and has the fanciest printers ever. This also isn't restricted by art could use oil paints if you like (this imaginary retail client has oil paint printers).

However, I want us to do this on the honor system....really try and make it the NEXT receipt you get (even if it's a really long grocery store one, or a really short ATM one...both extremes can yield interesting results)

*EDIT* If possible, post the original receipt with your entry.

Holy Posters Batman

Ok....Now THESE are cool posters:

*EDIT* Apparently they're not all Stephane Kardos', but they're brilliant nonetheless.
*EDIT* I've re-arranged the posters to make it clearer who did what.

Designed by Stephane Kardos:

*EDIT* Designed by Eric Tan: