Union’s Mental Health Awareness Month Show - “Eyes on the Horizon”
I had the opportunity to make a couple of paintings for Union Craft Brewing’s first ever Mental Health Awareness Month Show! The show encapsulates why Union has come to be such a profound member of Baltimore’s community, and I really felt honored to be among some of my favorite artists. The show was also supported by the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, which works hard to de-stigmatize mental health issues and create events centered around these conversations.
I created a triptych of paintings specifically for the show with an abstract concept in mind. For me, the subject matter and style of these paintings represent a physical manifestation of my attempt to control and master my own attention problems. Drawing and painting have always been a tool for me to channel my own focus in a world where I am consistently distract-able. Years ago, for fun, I started painting oceanscapes every now and again, as a way to create little therapeutic windows into places of pure calm. The ones which I’ve created for the MHAM show I’ve titled “Eyes on the Horizon”, and they are meant to represent my own struggle with retaining calm / focus in my life. It is rare that I get to be so self-indulgent with the art that I make, and I felt inspired enough by this process to continue creating art “just for me”.
[HAS HEART] - Maryland Designer
Last year around this time, I had the awesome opportunity to work with a non-profit based out of Michigan called [HAS HEART]. I was given the opportunity to be the MD designer on their trip across / around the country, where they pair a veteran in each state with a designer. From their site:
“[HAS HEART] is a Michigan-based, registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit, nonpartisan organization founded in 2011 as “Fashion Has Heart” by 8-year U.S. Veteran, Michael Hyacinthe and artist/designer, Tyler Way. Originally united over a cup of coffee in 2010, they quickly discovered the disconnect between their two worlds.
They realized the power of the creative process once Michael met a local quadriplegic Marine who loved t-shirts and asked Tyler to co-create a design that shared his story. Since then, the HERO[series] has continued to pair Veterans with designers for the shared mission to tell their story through the mediums of art, design, and fashion.”
I couldn’t believe how awesome Kendra and Tyler were and how deep and profound my friendship would be with my partnered Naval Veteran, Paula Neira. I had actually already seen Paula speak at a lecture about her experience transitioning and the way her path has paved the way for transgender members of the medical field, both as patients and providers, in her role at Johns Hopkins Hospital as a Nurse. Little did I know at the time that I would be given the opportunity to learn about Paula’s experience in the Navy and collaborate with her to create a graphic representation of her (seemingly) complicated story. At the end of the day, I’m really proud of the design I was able to create, but it only really made an impact on me when Paula told me how much she appreciated the end-product.
Since the experience with HAS HEART, Paula has helped open the Johns Hopkins Center for Transgender Health, and I was lucky enough to meet her there last week to get an update on everything she had been up to since we last met / collaborated. Like me, Paula seems to have been profoundly impacted by her experience with HAS HEART, and it is refreshing to think that there are people out there helping foster this type of genuine connection.
Design truly can serve as a bridge between worlds. I can’t think of anything more beautiful, and I’m just glad that I can be a part of such an important narrative. Please check out all of their projects at hasheart.us and read Kendra’s full post about the MD stop along their journey.
New Designs for Falling Branch
New label designs created so far in 2018 for the homies at Falling Branch Brewery
I am getting my Masters...at my dream school?!
Some of the wonderful people who I call my friends/family managed to convince me to apply to graduate school earlier this year. I've always been a bit skeptical of higher education, because I've managed to learn so much about my profession just by rolling up my sleeves and getting down to business. I looked into what program I could possibly do while working full time and maintaining the small amount of free time that I award myself. Only one program in MD really seemed like a fit for me, and it just so happened to be at MICA, a dream school for any artist growing up in Baltimore. I applied for their Information Visualization program, thinking that there was no harm in sending out a single application. Somehow, I managed to get in, and I was even lucky enough to be awarded a scholarship!
While I pursue this degree, I've decided it would be best to temporarily stop taking on freelance work. In light of that, I will try and post some of my assignments on here whenever they come in!
"Up in Vermont" - New Aerial Short
I headed up to my home away from home, Burlington, VT for a weekend away. My pal Joel and I traveled around the state, sending a drone up from a multitude of locations and settings. I cut together the footage and tried to experiment with an aerial-only video. I took a song that I've been messing around with on the guitar and timed out the clips accordingly.
I think the experiment was a success and I'm looking forward to cutting more of these together down the line as I get more hours in the sky.
B3 - Baltimore Built Bistro
My good buddy and super chef, Anthony Lanasa, has asked me to help him brand his new restaurant, B3. The coolest thing about Anthony's whole concept is that he wants the business to be legitimately sourced from local professionals. Along the design process, I've had the pleasure of bumping elbows with a number of awesome guys and gals who I grew up with. We worked together to create a logo which matches the food and atmosphere that Anthony is trying to create: elegant, but approachable and fun.
B3 will be opening in a couple of months and I'm sure I'll be spending a ton of my time at the bar, scarfing down some home-grown grub. Until then, we've got plenty of stuff to design!
I got my drone license!
I can now fly drones commercially after passing my Part 107 test. Excited to explore the possibilities that aerial photography / videography has to offer. Check out my first collection of test footage in the "Video / Animation" section of the site.
Holler at me if you need your business or wedding filmed from above. I'd be glad to oblige!
Falling Branch - New Bottles
I created some fresh illustrations for Falling Branch Brewery's latest batch of Belgian Revival and Falling Pumpkin. Check out the full designs in the Digital Design section!
Oh, and go check out Falling Branch please and thank you.
Falling Branch - Can Designs
I was asked by Falling Branch Brewery to create their first ever series of cans. They really let me take the steering wheel with this one and have some fun. I couldn't be happier with how these came out and I have to thank the dudes at FBB for opting for a thicker, textured paper for the can-wrap. It really feels as good in your hand as it tastes in your mouth/belly.
I can't stress enough how anyone reading this should drop what they are doing and head up to Street, MD and drink a couple of beers, pet a couple of goats, and tell them I sent you.
Game of Thrones is incredible. I want to time travel through the next couple of weeks, because I know it is gonna break my heart somehow. I'm not going to try and make any predictions here because no one will likely read this until the whole series is over. In the meantime, I'm going to try and start drawing the characters. <3
UPDATE: Thrones is still awesome and my heart didn't break!
I PAINTED ON A BUS.
I was flipping through the old photo collection and found this shot from November when I painted some text onto the back of my good pal Stacey's fashion bus, Gogo's. Real talk... I kind of suck at hand-lettering. But in the words of Jake the dog, "Suckin at something is the first step to being sorta good at something." ALSO, Gogo's is a sketchy/funky bus and my sketchy font kind of works at the end of the day. Do me a favor and go buy some cool shit from Stacey, and support local business dudes!
FALLING BRANCH BREWERY
A while back I designed a couple of labels for Falling Branch Brewery. They are a small farmhouse brewery in MD and I seriously like the way these guys do business. Honestly, just go see for yourself:
Anyways, they just printed/labeled their huge (22 oz?) bottles and I'm really stoked with how they turned out. Definitely hoping to return to this series and, in the meantime, get my hands on a couple bottles!
EDGAR WRIGHT DIGS MY STUFF!
I made a poster for Baby Driver just out of a pure love for the film. Seriously, I am not going to annoy you here, but GO SEE THIS MOVIE. It was fun, sexy, and stylish as hell. Anyways, the movie's director (AND ALSO GOD/BAE), Edgar Wright, saw my Instagram post, and proceeded to tweet my design. I can't even begin to explain how cool this is, not just because of Wright's influence on my taste and sense of humor, but because my little fun project now is now being seen by a much bigger audience. Fellow Baby-Driver-Lovers are giving me tons of positive feedback regarding the poster, and it is making me feel all fuzzy inside.
CLICK ON MY DIGITAL-DESIGN SECTION TO SEE THE POSTER
By some sort of miracle I am now working full time as a motion graphics editor, doing what I love every day. The more I narrow my focus on animation, the more obsessed I find myself getting. I want to be Walt Disney, OKAY?
That being said, I still am a complete n00b and don't want to post my work on here until I have a larger collection of stuff to be proud of. Until then, patience my dears!
MAGIC HAT SHOW
MARCH - JUNE
I've been making some new paintings for a solo show at Magic Hat Brewery in Burlington, VT! I am honored to have been selected for this opportunity and cannot wait until March 3 for the installation/opening. Honestly, I spend most of my time focused on digital design these days and don't give myself enough opportunities to paint or draw. I have plenty of paintings from the last year or three to fill a gallery space, but I saw this as an opportunity to create new work and get into the groove of getting some paint under my fingernails. These 6 small pieces to the right represent a warm-up exercise for the larger paintings that I am planning. If you somehow make it to Vermont between March and June, stop by Magic Hat, say hello to my boy John Langley, and drink some beers. Stay tuned for more new work!
The show is up, the beer is cold. What else can I say?
My dad showed me Westworld when I was 10 and its philosophical questions stuck with me throughout the years. I've seen countless movies since then imitate the plot of sentient AI and the idea has kind of gotten played. A couple of years ago, when I heard that HBO was launching the series, I was obviously psyched, and held out hope that they could do the concept justice. Watching the project develop with Nolan, Abrams and co. into an incredibly sophisticated masterpiece has been an absolute thrill. With brilliant acting performances, a highly intentional script (J. Nolan wrote Memento, Interstellar, Inception) and the network behind Game of Thrones, The Wire, Boardwalk Empire, The Night Of, AND THE SOPRANOS...c'mon. Cheers to future seasons of this show matching the impact of season one AND cheers to Buzzfeed for thinking I'm special!
MUSIC VIDEO (work in progress)
A friend of mine, Chris Hamilton, is in a band called Radiation Puppy. He approached me about writing and directing a music video for his new single, "Call In Sick". I wrote a story, filmed it, and am in the process of editing/animating.
Special shout outs to my 8 year old cousin, Bethany, for being an acting prodigy.
Also, thanks to Joel Flora for being my camera guy on this shoot!
Stay tuned for the video's release!