Browsing "arts and crafts"
Apr 15, 2012 - arts and crafts    Comments Off

Linoleum Cuts: Two examples colored with Photoshop

No Gravatar

Assignment was tworedhen 6 x 9 linocuts based on classic fables. Linocuts were to 4 — 5 colors, scanned and edited with Adobe Photoshop. Color was added with Photoshop. Final version was printed on glossy photo paper. (I cheated with the red detail by Sharpie Marker.)

Sep 29, 2010 - arts and crafts, Blue Dog    Comments Off

Should you make your own business cards at home?

No Gravatar

business cards

All the pros say never use hand-made business cards. Mostly that’s true.

It marks you as a professional weakling, not successful enough to have them “printed” printed–and nyah nyah probably not savvy enough to know what CMYK color separation is.

I’m not arguing. Perception is everything in the business world. When I worked at Citibank and Goldman Sachs, the secretary would just order 1000 for me with the company logo. I recently threw out a box of 990 from the last order, which, I’m sure, cost Goldman a bundle, but haven’t been very useful to me since Gorden Gekko last wore suspenders.

Sometimes a homemade business card is good enough, as long as you make it “good enough”. Precise typography, careful spacing and the best paper you can get. The new double-sided coated papers (Avery 8869 for instance) are very nice.

The basic rules of business cards apply:

  • Include your name, title, address, cell or office phone, email and web site.
  • No more than two typefaces, preferably a serif “display” and a clean, readable sans-serif for your info.
  • No more than 12 point type for your title, job or name, which ever is most important. The rest should be 8 to 9-point.
  • Keep your type away from the edge, Line it up to the left or right, but not all over the card.

I played around a bit with these rules on my card:

  • The display text, “Adler” is a serif monotype, and I used 14-point for my name because Adler comes out very small.
  • I used serif “Vidal” instead of a sans-serif for the text because I like it.
  • The back of my card is a photograph of a parasol I took in the 70′s. It’s been manipulated and adjusted with Photoshop. I chose it because I’m talking to people about promotional tasks lately, and I want to show my artistic side.

Since I only made a couple dozen, I can change the design again later if I need to.

business cards

Sep 27, 2010 - arts and crafts    Comments Off

The Stolen Bench Part 3: Pain can be taken to the next level

No Gravatar


After Sam’s Mondrian bench was stolen, the Mondiran bulletin board felt a little hollow. Time to put some funk on it.

In the first and second parts of this story I showed how pain can create art. Today we see how simple pain can be transcended by art.

Ok, my pseudo-Piet-Modrian bench was stolen. I recreated the motif with a cheap bulletin board. Good enough, I guess, but the next time I encountered a need for art in my life, the motif expanded and became something other.

The table


“I went from homeless to “living with my parents” I sold most of what I had in New Jersey, and hauled the rest to Wisconsin. Whatever I brought with me, It was too much for Mombo and Dad. So when the (borrowed) desk/table in my room collapsed and died, I felt like a bag lady whose shopping cart had lost a wheel eight blocks from the nearest Pathmark.

Mombo had a table she’d bought for $1 atGoodwill way back in the 1950′s. Mombo said, How about this table? I said do you mind if I paint it? She said, Just the top, not the body. Hunky-Dory with me. It’s an antique Shaker “Company” slide-out leaf table, painted a heinous brown on top, with perfect hand-crafted wood legs and pull-out leaves. Yeah!

table So I sanded, primed (x2), taped off squares, 5 by 3, laid out the colors so there was no overlap, and painted each square to reflect a different element (Red=Flowers; Yellow
=Sun, Blue=Sky, Green=Grass, Orange=Fire—Honestly, the last part is a little hokey and doesn’t show in the finished product, but what the heck, It’s my table, and that’s what I was thinking.)

tableThe basic idea came from Piet Mondrian–geometric shapes telling a story—Which cycles back to the stolen bench and my separation from Sam.

Sep 27, 2010 - arts and crafts, Blue Dog, parents    Comments Off

The Stolen Bench Part 2: How Art affects our lives long-term

No Gravatar

A painted bench was stolen in 2006. Four years layer, the motif was revived and recreated

mondrian bulletin board
In the first part of this story, I told how a painted bench had been stolen. Four years later, I am still sucking the sore tooth of that indignity, crying to the Gods for the loss of the the bench that got away.

Today, I’ve left the homeless life. I packed my ego away with my out-of-season clothes and moved in with my 80+ parents in Milwaukee. Mom and I were in a Goodwill and she suggested I buy a cork bulletin board for 99 cents. Truly, Mom doesn’t really suggest things—she made it clear that she didn’t like the cork squares I had glued to the wall of my office, and wanted me to replace them with a less wall-intensive substitute. So I did.

At home I saw I had bought a cheap pine-framed cork bulletin board, which was OK, but lacked any kick-ass. I started thinking about the stolen bench—It began to tease and squeeze, knocked me to my knees—and I got another idea.

mondrian bulletin boardPaint the damn thing. I looked up my old Photoshop designs for the unfortunate Piet Mondrian Bench. Two coasts of primer, which soaked into the cork, three coats of acrylic color, electrician’s tape for the black lines, and a final coat of polyurethane. It took a week, because the paint had to dry in between, but it came out nice—And I am strangely vindicated. Mondrian