I am messy. Maybe messy is the wrong word… not tidy I think is better, it doesn’t carry with it the same smelly connotations. My brain is quite skittish and random, lots of collisions of ideas and synapses firing all at once all trying to be heard. So, naturally, that spills over into the real world. Take for instance my desk at work:
As you can see it is not the tidiest of places. I like to think it is a visual representation of my creative mind, and I like to say that you can’t trust a creative who has a tidy desk. I’m sure someone very wise has written a few books on the matter. But as I look around the studio I can see that this is not the case. So I decided to do something about it. I ordered this little guy:
I felt so proud. Here I was, noticing a problem and dealing with it. When it arrived I was beaming all day. I asked people to come over to my desk in the hope that they would spark up a conversation about my new desk accessory or how my desk had changed from being cluttered to the most sparkling display of organisation anyone had ever seen! But, there was a problem. This is what my desk looked like a week later:
Now the desk tidy had just become part of the mess. If anything, it reduced the area I could use, compacting the mess into a smaller space! I realised that maybe a desk tidy was not the answer.
I took to the internet to see if people could help me. Seeking counsel on Facebook for this kind of thing is odd, so I jumped on Tumblr. That’s where I found Tomas Kral. A man with the same problem as me, but with a different way of dealing with it. To him being messy was built-in, like breathing. He just did it. He couldn’t change, not now. He was in his 30s and old habits die hard. So he embraced the mess. He saw the work area and his untidiness as a conflict with the clarity of his creative thinking. So, rather than ignore or control it, he embraced it and designed a table that worked for him:
Artist Phil Hansen also faced and embraced a conflict in his life… one much more serious. When he was 17 he started developing a tremor. Now, that’s a pretty shitty thing to get if you’re an artist. At first he chose to ignore the tremor and started holding his pencil and paintbrush more firmly. And when the tremors got worse he held them harder still, until he found it difficult to hold anything at all. Then, at a visit to the doctors, he received the worst news he could get – he would never have full use of his fingers and his tremors would never go away. His doctor then imparted some knowledge that changed his life forever – Embrace the Shake.
This conflict of perfection vs imperfection was no longer a barrier, but a creative springboard! Now no picture was too big, no canvas too strange and no utensil too abstract. From art designed to not last, to a painting painted using only karate chops, he embraced his conflict and created works of art he couldn’t have imagined back when he was 17, when he was desperately trying to ignore the problem.
All the best stories in life have conflict, whether its guy vs girl, man vs the world, even man vs internal struggle – every compelling story has conflict. It’s only when we face and embrace conflict that we get to truly original and truly creative design executions.
Startup Mixee Me want to make 3D printing accessible to everybody. (Thanks, Chris Loud)
Their software enables you to design your own Mixee figurines with their online editor, choosing the hair, eyes, body parts, and even uploading your own graphic for facial expressions and shirt designs. Mixee Me will then make your model real, with innovative 3D printing. The cost? Just $25 plus shipping.
Entrepreneurial artists and designers have found e-commerce sites like Etsy and Bonanza invaluable when building up their brands and selling their stuff. But as far as having physical spaces for showing off their work, options so far have been limited.
Spotting this opportunity, Angela Wang founded Republic Spaces to give creative thinkers and makers a convenient and affordable place to display their wares.
Sounds like a brilliant place for a browse, too.
Sebastian Errazuriz’s studio was paralysed after the hurricane. Unable to work and tired of watching the horrible disaster unfold on the news, Errazuriz decided to design something to help raise much-needed relief funds. This idea occurred to him after seeing the water line marked on the walls of the flooded galleries in New York’s Chelsea art district. (Nice one, Jamie C)
Never ones to shy away from a tequila-centric gathering, some of the Elmwood New York folks attended the launch party for the latest 1800® Tequila ‘Essential Artists’ series.
Now in its fourth series, the tequila brand partnered with SPIN magazine to select 6 rising stars from the art scene, who have each made their mark as animators, illustrators, graphic designers and graffiti artists. They were asked to weave their magic on a blank 1800® Silver Tequila bottle, which were displayed on the night alongside original artworks from the likes of Tara McPherson, Kai and Sunny and our buds over at I Love Dust. www.1800tequila.com/essential-artists
Inspired by Mexican heritage and Mayan culture, the 6 collectible bottles represent some of the most inventive spirit packaging on US shelves currently and are a great example of brands using the power of collaboration, not only to boost their own brand message, but also to provide other creatives with a platform to create something inspiring. Great night of art, music, (and booze).