The Sharpie Blog: Where we share the amazing stuff people do with Sharpie

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It’s Official…

Winter white is out and pastel palettes are in like Flynn. The world’s decor and pasty legs DEMAND it.

Yah, we are looking at you, Winter...

Winter is gone. Dead. Finito. OVER. At least that’s what the calendar says right? The official start of Spring has come and gone and although the weatherman may not agree, we don’t care! It is time for pastels and bold spring colors, bunnies, ducks, egg-shaped chocolates and wardrobe makeovers! Sun, we neeeeed you!

Unfortunately UNTIL Mother Nature agrees and decides to warm up our snowy little piece of the universe, at which point we will whip out the flip-flops, we will make-do by sprucing up our living spaces!

Check out some of the ideas below and for more, hop on over to our Hop into Spring Pinterest board.

So, grab a Sharpie; fine, paint, Brush, Stained, we don’t care! Just get to work!

Winter, we hate to say it, but We. Are. Over. It’s official: Spring and Sharpie are officially going steady.

And because I just couldn’t resist the THOUGHT of some flippy-floppys…

Have your own Sharpie spring ideas? SHOW US!! Pin them to Pinterest and tag us #Sharpie– we will re-pin our favorites to our Hop into Spring board!

 

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Uncap the Drop

Recently our very own Sharpie intern, Samantha DeCarlo added a little color of her own to Crane’s Drop Humidifiers when they approached her to work on an ongoing project to spice up some of their products using Sharpie oil-based paint markers!

Each month, the company will feature one artist who uses Sharpie oil paint markers to decorate the humidifier, and Samantha is the first! AND once the humidifiers are finished, one lucky fan will win the one-of-a-kind creation!

To enter the raffle, go to: http://www.facebook.com/CraneUSA

To see more of Samantha’s work, visit: http://www.facebook.com/SGDart

The ink doesn’t stop here though, Crane is continuing the Sharpie love over the next year working with some AMAZING artists, including Sharpie blog alumni like Matthew Langille,so be sure to check out their Facebook and blog for more!

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Color that Cube with Sharpie Canada

Last November the Sharpie Canada team and the Design Exchange (DX) museum in Toronto teamed up for an exciting project. We challenged DX’s large design community to come up with a Sharpie marker holder that would make their office a happier place.

We KNOW the happiness-inducing effects of a Sharpie marker, but in far too many offices our colorful little magical wands are hidden in a drawer with paper clips and tissue paper. We knew we needed to change this. As luck turned out, the DX was in the final stages of their The Happy Show exhibit featuring the work of international renowned graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister. The show is the output of his ten-year exploration and takes a visual, empirical, interactive and quirky look into what makes us human-folk happy. Can we say match made in heaven?!

So, after a quick open call  and less than a month later we received thirty amazing entries including renderings, inspirations and detailed design specs. From this amazing group we had the difficult task of choosing ten finalists and had them show us their stuff! They were each tasked with creating their Sharpie designs in time for the opening night on January 9th.

Then it was up to us to show them off! We set up an all white cubicle complete with a white desk, carpet, trash, tape dispenser etc.Truly a blank canvas for some Sharpie inspiration! Guests strolled through the exhibit floor and registered their vote with (what else) Sharpie markers on a giant grid scorekeeper. To date, we’ve been through over a dozen of these and the DX expects to welcome 35,000 visitors by the time the show wraps up!

The cubicles and Sharpie Holders were a permanent part of The Happy Show until it left town on March 3rd.  We will have a winner chosen at the end of the show but DON’T WORRY, we want you to have a say, too! Be sure to cast your vote on Facebook and help us select our winner TODAY!

Are you in the Toronto area and want to check out the Design Exchange? Head right downtown to the Design Exchange and for more information, please visit the DX site www.dx.org.

 

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Daniel Roberts is out of this world

We love Facebook, beyond the unlimited stalking opportunities it allows,  it ALSO introduces us to amazing, out-of-this-world artists like Daniel Roberts!

We had the amazing opportunity to chat with Daniel about his work and his unique Sharpie style. .

Check it.

1. Tell me about yourself! Where are you from? Interests? Likes? Dislikes? Give us the good stuff!

First and foremost, hello, my name is Daniel Roberts from Las Cruces, but currently I’m now living in Albuquerque, NM. I am turning 22 in April, I obtained my associates degree in Business Management. I have completed/sold well over 50+ canvases as well as I’ve created custom art for a select few. I have participated in approximately 5 local art shows including two in downtown El Paso, TX. I have developed my portfolio over the past 8 years.  More than money, I want people to simply see my art and view it as they may. Enjoy it. Every single one of my canvases I have created is made 100% Sharpie products. People always ask me why I create my Sharpie Art, I tell them “because when I actually start creating with a blank canvas and my Sharpie markers, I forget about the rest of the world, forget about my problems and insecurities, about failures and an uncertain future, about everything, I lose myself in each canvas…”  Each one of them tells my story; you just have to use your own imagination to bring them to life. My work is unique, original, and overall expressive. My ideas, imagination, and creations become alive through Sharpie markers. ENJOY!!

2. What inspires you to uncap what’s inside? How do you use Sharpie markers in your work?

My inspirations and signature art twists, come from different parts of me which are influenced by the different beautiful images of life that surround me. A select few icons that are my muses include Alexander McQueen, Marco Mazzoni, Alex Pardee, High Fructose & GQ Magazines, Brandt Peters as well as other inspirational artists. Music has also been a huge part of my inspirations.

Each and every one of my canvases are made with 100% Sharpie markers. As a final touch and when I decide I’m finished with a final piece, I like to spray paint the boarders with black spray paint to create a perfect fitted frame. This also helps contrast perfectly against the vibrant Sharpie colors on the canvases.  I’m always keeping imagination, creativity and the arts alive!! These are only a few things what inspires me to uncap what’s inside!!

3. You create some amazing blended looks with the marker ink, any tips on how to achieve this?

I ALWAYS get asked how I am able to manipulate the Sharpie Ink into such a smooth coating. I would love the share my secrets with the world, but that is something I’m also very proud of. I enjoy knowing that it is such a mystery, kind of like chefs “top secret recipes.” I like having a unique medium that I truly enjoy creating with. This gives my art an interesting edge, as well as brilliant colors. My personal tip, black Sharpie markers are the key to bringing all of my major and minor details a life.

4. Favorite Sharpie?  Why? 

By far, my favorite Sharpie markers are the original Fine Point Sharpie. I love the outstanding variety of colors. I have different art supply boxes and bags FULL of black and colored Fine Point, Retractable Sharpie markers, Twin Tip, and of course the Chisel Tip. I use nothing else but 100% Sharpie for my pieces! I recently fell in love with the black Sharpie King Size marker; this truly helps me with a lot of my major detailing, considering my bigger sized canvases.

5. How would you describe your style of art? 

I would describe it as Nontraditional–Urban. New Age. Unique Art. I create and design beautiful images, but there is a darker, sicker twist to each piece. I create things that don’t exist, but I really wish they did. I like to incorporate elegance and beauty with a touch of obscenity and vulgarity. When I start to create a canvas, I like to find ways where imagination and creativity can be explored with images never seen.  [D.R.]

6. Your work is pretty whimsical and other-worldly, how did you get started?

All of my life I have found that different art comes from different minds. I remember creating my first few art pieces throughout school with acrylic, pastel, oils, and other art supplies, but I never found my true medium that inspired me to explore further. I was 13 when I started creating with my Sharpie markers. I was leaving my mark with Sharpie everywhere; it was around 14 when I discovered my ability to manipulate the Sharpie ink. That’s when my entire world and visions of art changed. I truthfully started to appreciate the colors and details in each piece. I already loved creating with my little monsters, box-headed figures and strange images, but my “Top Secret Art Recipe” was what brought each character to life and pushed me further to explore my limits as an artist.

7. What projects are you working on currently or can you tell us what you ARE working on next?

Currently, I am working as a barista for Satellite Café in Albuquerque, NM. I’ve been selected to participate in creating the marketing flyer for “Live in the Living Room”, which is different events that are featuring local artists, actors, and musicians that come to perform for in our café. I also have been searching for different art galleries in New Mexico and around the country to try and participate in a show or even just get help in pointing me in the right direction for my kind of art. And always, I’m continuously working on different canvases around my house, which accumulate all of my wall space!! My Sharpie Art is my passion, my inspiration is everywhere!

8. Do you have a soft spot for one of your pieces in particular?

Well, of course I have my favorites, but each canvas contains an emotion of me. My heart, mind, body and soul go into each piece, my life and experiences (good and bad) are what influence my art. There are both happy and very detrimental pieces in my art collection. The titles of each canvas can also usually say a lot, but overall, your imagination is what really shows me as an artist I am telling you a story. I want people to view my art and focus on something nontraditional and let their minds explore.

Want to more? Check out all of Daniel’s work by becoming a fan of his on Facebook and checking out his website!

Want to OWN one of these other worldly peices? Shoot him a note at bleepy00012@yahoo.com

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Professor Rivard

It started with a skateboard. Which turned into an ad campaign. Now, Mark Rivard has started a movement.

Recently, Mark launched an art education program, The Mark Rivard Skateboard Art Education, a unique program designed to provoke and inspire students to strive for success through hard work and recognition of one’s potential.

Skateboards. Art. School. Stop it. Where the heck was this when I was trying not to bang my head against my desk praying 4th period would just end!?

Everyday we are blown away with what can start with Sharpie. Today, we have been blown to pieces, so we will let Mark tell you about it while we try and wrap our head around this amazing-ness!

Tell me! What have you been up to lately!?

What a rollercoaster ride it’s been since the 2011 campaign!  I have been busy!  The last year has seen so much opportunity for me it’s been unbelievable, but the most important opportunity came in the form of an idea I’ve had for quite awhile.  I started a skateboard art education program, which has been a passion of mine.  I’ve been creating art, painting, skateboards, sculptural pieces, just really letting the creative process grow which has been really interesting.  Life is good, and art is STILL FUN!

Skating selfie.

I know WE KNOW how, but tell us how you got started with Sharpie! 

My relationship with Sharpie started about five years ago when my aunt, who is an office supplies manager, mentioned to her Sharpie Rep that her nephew used Sharpie markers to illustrate skateboards.  That rep must have said something to the marketing team and the next thing I knew I was doing an interview for this very blog!  Then in 2009 I was invited to become a member of inaugural Sharpie Squad, from that opportunity we have just continued to spitball ideas and I am yet to find a better skateboard illustration tool…  There’s a lesson here too, foster your relationships.  Young artist are always asking me, “How did I get where I am?”   It’s those around you that are so instrumental in your success.  When I got my foot in the door with Sharpie I ate up every opportunity I could, I’ve been pestering the bigwigs over there for years with ideas and projects I want to work on (Pestering?! PLEASE- we love it!!) .  If someone would have told me five years ago that I would have the relationship I have today with Sharpie I would have thought they were crazy, but here we are, and you guys still answer my calls!!!  Thanks Sharpie, it’s been an incredible five years! Cheers to us! 

Since being THE skateboarding force behind 2011’s ad campaign- you have started up your own education program? Fill us in!

This has been the one thing in my life I can honestly say I am the most proud of.  I used the momentum and recognition that 2011’s Sharpie campaign afforded me and developed a program called Rivard Art Education.  I wanted to find away to give back, not only to skateboarding, but also to kids that are a lot like I was growing up.  School didn’t come naturally for me and I always had a hard time finding things that I was genuinely interested in.  The older I’ve gotten the more I realized my passion for helping people figure out their role in life.  I was fortunate in the things I’ve been through that I was able to find an outlet that I was so passionate about.  I was able to better my life because of it.  I want to help people learn to recognize that kind of drive in themselves.  School doesn’t have to be a drag ( seriously where were you during my 4th period class?!) and if I’m in a position to help make it better, even if it’s just for a few, than it’s something I am committed to doing.  I feel like with the campaign I was given the chance to use some of the inspirational themes to piggyback off of and create a, pay-it-forward, type momentum through the Rivard Art Education.

Professor Rivard and those lucky kids!

As for skateboarding and skateboard art itself, that is merely a tool.  I wrote this piece called “The Skateboarding Springboard”, which I think best describes the basis for the program:

“A couple of days ago I was talking with a friend about his idea to develop a skateboard school through one of the local shops.  As we were talking I realized that the fundamental reason for success with these types of programs has nothing to do with skateboarding itself and everything to do with the interactions and openness brought out by the idea of skateboarding and the aesthetic of skateboarders.  How do we sell this idea to group of people that have zero understanding of skateboarding?  The kids don’t care; they are intrigued by anything & everything when presented in manner that is giving them the freedom to discover their own outcomes.  How do you sell to a PTA?  Or a group of people who’s ideas of skateboarding is negative?  You prove to them that skateboarding is simply a means to a larger conversation.  The lesson and value of the experience is in the conversations had collectively while working on a skateboard.  It’s in the way you watch a young person come to their own realizations while pushing a Sharpie across the bottom of board.  Skateboarding is simply the springboard to so many other positive emotions and a tool used to inspire the emotions that in turn define what a young person is passionate about.  Once a kid discovers a passion they have instantly added a positive value to their own life, they’re now off and running with they’re own ideas.  And a kid with an idea is powerful thing…”

 

What has inspired you to start Rivard Art education?

I’ve been fortunate enough in the past to be invited to speak at a couple of schools around the world and those were some of the most fulfilling experience I’ve been apart of as an artist.  The first school I had ever been to was a high school in Dienze, Belgium, I was invited to speak about the differences between American and European Youth and Pop Cultures.  I was in Belgium doing an art show and a friend, who was a teacher there, thought I would be a good compliment to her current study of American Cultures.  It was a true honor and the response from the students was incredible.  I was also graciously invited into an all boys’ Muslim school in town called Al Kohr just outside of Doha, Qatar, in the Middle East.  I started to realize that through my art and my story I had a positive message to spread.  That message was in a way it’s own internationally and culturally recognizable language, the values were relatable through cultural barriers.

After the 2011 campaign I received an email from a local elementary teacher stating that I was an artist her school was going to being featuring and studying over the course of their school year.  I responded and told her that I was honored and would love to stop by and say hello to the students.  We got to talking and essentially created the Rivard Art Education, which had its first official run as a five-day residency at Liberty Ridge Elementary in Woodbury, Minnesota.  From there it has snowballed into national and even international interest with offers to visit schools, conferences’, and seminars as far as India!  I have a lot of appreciation for the support and insights that a few key teachers and educators have provided me in getting Rivard Art Education off the ground.  Tess Soucheray, Jill Brown, Jessica Frisco, Lorelli Byrne, Shannon Opichka, and Joanne Toft were all key’s to inception and success of the program and they deserve so much appreciation for their efforts in helping me get this going.  Thank you!

 

I know I would be psyched if you had come to my school, how could kids/schools get involved?

You can contact me through my website:  www.RivardArtEducation.com!  There are so many ways and ideas for incorporating the program!

A new level of class.

Are you still working as an artist and creating those amazing Sharpie decks we have come to love?

Absolutely!  My time spent actually creating has been challenged with the birth of all these new projects, but at the end of the day I still find myself sitting down and sketching out skateboards…  I’m an artist all the time, you can’t shake that…

What’s on the horizon for the rest of 2012?

The rest of this year and going into 2013 are looking busy.  I have a number of schools I’m going to be visiting and the program is turning into a full time job.  One project I am super excited about is an opportunity to work with Brunswick High School in Virginia.  We are doing a project where I will hand deliver 100 skateboards to the school to and be making art with the students for a few days there.  It was a project that hit near and dear to me when I learned of the high school.  They had approached me about making a visit and after a lot of brainstorming we came to the conclusion that there was simply not enough funding for the trip.  The teacher had talked to me about her schools budget for the art department and I thought I had to help in some way.  Instead of giving up I proposed a challenge to the school, and to myself, to raise the money and make, what I’ve since branded as “The Virginia Project” a reality.  The ultimate goal of what I do is to prove that you can do anything in life you put your mind to, and this seemed like a perfect opportunity to prove that.  So in January of 2013 I will be going to Virginia to spend a week with the students of Brunswick High School!  I’ll also be visiting schools in Ohio, Colorado, and all over my home base of Minnesota with more opportunities coming up daily!

Where can we find you? :

RivardArtEducation.com

Follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram!

And be sure to “Like” the Rivard Art Education page on Facebook as well as Rivard Art Inc.!

Talk about having the coolest teacher EVER?!  Mark Rivard just won’t quit making his mark and we just love him for it!

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The Gilded Age of Sharpie

Sharpie is coming into its Gilded Age and illustrator Eric Rosner is leading the way. Eric has been an artist for more than 20 glorious years using Sharpie to shine the light on stunning Manhattan during its iconic period, its golden era, its gilded age. And we are more than a little impressed with what he can do with a Sharpie!

We had a little chat with Eric about his work, his favorite marker (spoiler alert: it’s a Sharpie!) and some of his most famous fans!

Eric Rosner

Tell me about yourself! Where are you from? Interests? Likes? Dislikes? Pet Peeves? Give us the good stuff! 

Hello, my name is Eric Rosner.  I am a New York artist specializing in illustrating the Gilded Age of New York.  I love to illustrate the old world of 1880-1910 Manhattan.  It was such an exciting period of science and discovery, progressive thinking, growth, epic architectural construction and unique forms of new entertainment.

I was born in Brooklyn and  grew up in Las Vegas.  I came back to NYC after college and have worked as a Director of Animation (2d/3d) at MTV, Nickelodeon and TVLAND for 23 years.

I love to explore the city looking for forgotten treasures…small relics from the glorious past of Manhattan.

What is inspires you to uncap what’s inside?

I  think that there are personal stories to tell about the old history of New York. I’m mostly interested in exploring the everyday tales of people from every corner of the world and from every profession who had come to New York to live a dream. I like to illustrate those moments in my art.

How do you use Sharpie markers in your work? 

I love my Sharpie!  I have tried using other brands but the road always turns back to Sharpie.  I think the ink lasts the longest and the feel is just perfect for me.

I search for reference photos of a 1880-1910 NYC structure or a scene that I want to illustrate.  A brand new Sharpie is just a perfect, constant line that is a deep black color. And then the magic just happens, simple as that.

Favorite Sharpie?  Why? 

Ultra Fine Point!!!  It’s just the perfect line for me.  I can get the details that I desire and perfect the style that I have been working on.

How would you describe your style? 

Hmm… not sure.  People say it’s very unique in its ornateness yet modern feel. To me it’s just my way of expressing motion and flow.  I try to bring power and emotion to a NYC building.  It’s a strong structure of might and an icon of what New York was, is and will be.  I want to express a sense of purpose in the buildings that I illustrate. These are architectural wonders that have stood for decades and housed people and ideas that changed the world.

How did you get started? 

I’ve always loved to illustrate since early age.  Although I’ve never thought anything special about it until during college. I just wasn’t loving my business classes and escaping into illustration was much more pleasurable and creatively fulfilling. When I moved to NYC I got my job at MTV, a new era of pop art was emerging.  I wanted to make a mark in New York.  I wanted to contribute in a way that the great artists of the city before me did.  So I started a series called “FREAK CITY”, which is a collection of faces from average New Yorkers who had strange and bizarre stories. I illustrated the faces and added various backgrounds which happened to included some of the glorious Gilded Age buildings.  It turned out that people seemed to be drawn to the building backgrounds so much that I’d concentrated on illustrating only the buildings. Then I just keep practicing my drawing skills literally every day.

You have come across some pretty famous fans of your work, do you have a favorite fan moment, famous or otherwise?  

Having Alec Baldwin as a fan and attending one of my shows was a true amazing moment this year.  I have also received wonderful feedbacks from friends and people who have become my fans.  I wouldn’t have continued doing this if not for such incredible outpouring of praise and support.

How do you decide what you want to tackle next, slash can you tell us what you ARE working on next?

I constantly search for inspiring images, buildings, people, vehicles…iconic and epic. When I find something that really strikes me, I draw it doing my best to give it a sense of grandeur and respect that it deserves.  We tend to glorify the future  and sometimes forget the past but it is where we all come from.

My next projects are going to be concentrating on Science and Space.  I want to create art that inspires people about the positive future that we all can have and achieve.  During the 40′s and 50′s magazines would predict great wonders that awaited us all and these images pushed the imagination.  I would like to contribute to the wonders of imagination and thought and help push the next generation even further.

Do you have a soft spot for one of your pieces in particular? 

One of my favorite illustrations is OLD NEW YORK BLOCK.  This was one of my very first successful art works created in the beginning of my obsession with the Gilded Age. It all started as I happened to venture down Broadway, between 33rd to 23rd streets.  I saw this incredible building on the corner, a relic from another time. And as I stood in awe of this 100+ years old structure, I was imagining all the people who must have occupied it , the throngs of ordinary and famous people who strolled up and down Broadway back in the day.  Mark Twain stayed at the Gilsey House on 29th st.  Edison experimented in his Nickelodeon stores just down the street. Tesla, who lived only a block away. Houdini, Oscar Wilde, Lucile Ball, Bob Hope, Winsor McCay and a list of endless people who walked up and down this street  passing this building.  And here I was looking at that very same building that I decided then and there to illustrate.  It really blew me away.  I LOVE New York City and I want to convey it in my art. I felt that the day I saw that building was the beginning of my journey to achieve that goal.

If you could have one super power what would it be and why? 

Hmm… I love quantum mechanics…I would be have the power to explore the universe and all its mysteries.

If you could have dinner with one person, living or dead, who and why? 

Steve Jobs!  Mister Can-Do-Anything.  I love his saying “The journey is the reward”. I admire his respect of design and simple elegance, the mantra of “Great” over “Good enough”.  He is my hero. He was a glorious visionary.

YES! Movie day!! Check out Eric’s animations and short films on YouTube!

Eric’s animations

http://youtu.be/xxwm_DAnyCA

Also here are some links to some of my short films that I have animated.

http://youtu.be/yROhlgLWLME

http://youtu.be/MgEBOVnuGEw

http://youtu.be/86uM9JSgz8M

http://youtu.be/ymdfr5saN5Y

http://youtu.be/Wt7GR7cqais

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Sharpie Squad Star Needs YOUR Vote!

Election day may be over (Congrats President Obama!) but you can still uncap your vote by showing your STAR spangled support for Ms. Amanda Shupp!

Amanda is one of our AMAZINGLY talented Sharpie Squad members who is also doubling as a Top 20 finalist for the Duck Tape My Design Print Contest!

WHO wouldn’t want to see this Sharpie designed star on a roll of Duck Tape?! SO, to help make it happen head on over to Duck Tape’s Facebook page and Vote for Amanda now!

You can vote EVERYDAY through November 15th!

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Tim Goodman Blows The Lid Off Vegas

What do Sharpie, Tupac Shakur and Timothy Goodman have in common? One heck of a live art mural in none other than hotter-than-hot, Las Vegas!

This amazing wall mural Tim created for FlexFit Headwear at the MAGIC S.L.A.T.E. trade show in Las Vegas back in August is just the latest in Tim’s amazing hand lettering feats (remember these!?!).  FlexFit is a headwear company located in Los Angeles that—like all the companies at the MAGIC show—appeals to the urban or ‘streetwear’ fashion community.

FlexFit challenged Tim to come up with an idea for a mural that he would draw, real-time, during the first day of the show. Tim’s focus was based around creating not only a great piece of work but an entire experience for people stopping by,  “While it was important that the mural was relative to the culture of both FlexFit and MAGIC, I also wanted to create an experience for the passersby that wasn’t too literal to the brand.” And boy, did he! Just check out the video below!

image via Timothy Goodman

Get the full low-down on Tim’s website along with EVEN more photos from the event!

Do it, to it.

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Sharpie LIVE at Evil Olive

THIS Friday, October 19th, Chicago’s own Evil Olive in the very cool Wicker Park neighborhood, will be hosting “UnVeil,” a collaborative effort between Sharpie artist Keith Skogstrom of Geodesic Designs and Loren Egeland of Soulfume Ink.

FOR YOUR EYES ONLY! Sneak peek at the installation! See the real thing THIS Friday!

Keith, a furniture and mural artist in Chicago, IL,  took a minute to fill us in on how this awesome project came to be!

I contacted the owner and requested to place a temporary mural on a vacant wall in his venue. Professionally, I’m constantly searching for public spaces in which to display artwork. For me, the idea is that as an artist I need to be making objects, and continue to put them in the public eye. It forces me to generate work and to maintain a presence in the community. I used my recent work at Violet Hour and Back Room, as examples of the proposed mural and after formally pitching him my proposal he put me in contact with the management team. We collaborated on how the installation would reflect both my aesthetics as a designer, and the needs of the venue. In order to best  suit our collaborative needs I invited graphic artist, Loren Egeland of Soulfume Ink to participate in the creation of the installation. Loren created digital renderings of his contribution to the piece.

It all starts somewhere...

I then put together some drawings of the overall arrangement and design of my 12 panels.

Sharpie sketches...

...at their finest!

Together we spent the last 4 months in my studio, also known as “The Sandbox”, building and designing the installation.

My contribution to the installation is inspired by the radial symmetry of­ gears, along with the mechanical processes involved in creating the shapes and panels themselves. I see the mechanical ratios of gears as patterns which I can distort. I use Sharpie markers to create implied depth and functional pattern on sculptural elements.

The wheels are officially turning!

The final arrangement and size of the individual panels, is determined by the location of the mural within the venue. In this case, it is nestled under the steel stairs on a brick wall.

We look forward to unveiling this art installation and encourage everyone to join us on October 19th at 8PM at  Evil Olive (1551 West Division).

You’ve seen how it all started, now head over to Evil Olive THIS Friday to see how it turned out!

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James Victore: The Simplicity of Being a Genius

Every once in a while we get a little star struck; especially when it comes with discovering a certain creative genius is a fan of us, little ole’ Sharpie! James Victore is just that creative genius. The renowned American art director, designer, and author turned us into screaming fan-girls around here when his team reached out to let us know of James’ Sharpie love. I mean the guy has published a book, held his own awe-inspiring conference, oh, and has had his work exhibited in The Museum of Modern Art. NBD.

We (and by “we,” I obviously mean “me”) stand by our fan-girl status. We also proudly own the possibly embarrassing display that occurred when he asked if he could contribute a guest blog post. I will just leave it at “excessive”. What? He’s awesome.

But enough gushing from me, let the mustached man inspire you to Start with Sharpie for himself and find out what’s next on the horizon for this celebrated genius.

The 'stache. Gets me every time.

There is power in even the simplest of tools…

Graphic Design is an intellectual field, we spread ideas, the images are just the teaspoon of sugar– or vitriol– that we use to cloak the message. I find it satisfying to illuminate ideas using simple tools. In every thing I make, I want to entertain, educate, and enlighten with the simple twist of the cliché—images that are deceptively simple.

Why Sharpie?

My weapons of choice have always been a Sharpie and a pair of scissors. There is something so honest about ink on paper. Black and white is truth. For me, there is no quicker way to get thoughts on paper—the pen is my freedom. Even today, a Sharpie and an opinion is worth more and stronger than the shrewdest marketing strategy.

I’ve used Sharpie pens in work for all my clients; Esquire Magazine, Aveda, Moet Chandon, Bobbie Brown, the City of New York, The New York Times and Time Magazine. Most of my work hanging in the MoMA was made with Sharpies. (SEE! Let’s see you try to not drop your jaw)

Moet

I begin every job by sketching. Just putting thoughts on paper– trying not to judge or evaluate too soon– just rough first drafts. Later I refine these, but too well. I rarely use the computer to clean up or alter hand-made marks. I try to leave all the fingerprints. Today’s reliance on technology makes the human mark even more impactful and memorable.

What’s Next?

“Take This Job & Love It”. Was a day-long symposium here in New York on September 29th. I spent the day discussing creativity—and how you to reclaim it in your own life. A big part of that is showing you how to lose your hang-ups, the things that stifle your creativity and to start thinking about the things you create as a “gift”. By believing your work is a “gift” it radically changes what you create. I think this is a revolutionary idea. it’s no longer about client approval or a paycheck, but aspiring to make work that has meaning and purpose in your life and for your audience.

The next big design project here in my studio is a poster series called “New York I Love You, But…” We will be designing a series of faux motivational posters to hang throughout NYC—simple reminders of core values and philosophy like personal responsibility, etiquette, and discipline—not preachy, just honest.

One of these posters uses the 1960′s classic icon “Hang In There Kitty” as a starting point. Our poster will say “Let Go Kitty” meaning let go of fixed thinking, of the status quo forget all the preconceived notions of what life is supposed to be like. Look for it on Kickstarter this fall.

James Victore…

in the MoMA

http://www.moma.org/collection/artist.php?artist_id=35811

Website

http://www.jamesvictore.com/

Take This Job & Love It

http://www.jamesvictore.com/takethisjob

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