Monday, October 31, 2005

MoMA Walk

MoMA Walk
Originally uploaded by jtpuck.

Since I missed the previous group photo, I took a self-portrait in the rollercoaster-length line at the MoMA. Saw some truly great work there including some highly-regarded chairs. I never thought great design could bring tears to my eyes.

Two Guys With Glasses.

4 Eyes
Originally uploaded by jtpuck.

It worked out that while in New York, Manny was able to meet up with us from Brooklyn on 2 occasions. Wearing Dave's hat I had a Michael Stipe moment; and in true architect form, Manny sports well crafted lenses for purely aesthetical reasons. Don't tell his date.

New York Trip

NY Group
Originally uploaded by jtpuck.

Did I tell you I was going to New York? Again, I'm talking about Hank's class. On October 25th & 26th, class convened in Manhattan and we had to get there, put ourselves up, and pray for an agenda. Above you'll see half the group in line at the Museum of Modern Art New York with 350 other people. Target sponsors Free Entry Friday's from 4-7pm and we were jumped at the chance. A couple others got there before we did so they missed this paparazzi moment. From left, John, Christine, Kathleen, Nick, and Boris. Over those 2 days we visited 7 design firms of all shapes and sizes. Extremely inspiring, great work spaces, cultures, and good times on the side.

Friday, October 21, 2005

The Waiting Test.

Part of taking Hank's class is a lesson in patience. Patience with research. Patience with ideas. Patience in waiting...actually, patience IS waiting. My teammates and I have been patient with Hank this morning as we sit on the steps of school under the orange shine of telephone posts. It's 7am. Class starts at 5:30am. Hank is not here and his voice mailbox is full. Now is the time to take action. A few of us have begun talking about a book we're reading, WISE BLOOD by Flannery O'Conner. We've discussed our chairs and the background stories that have inspired them. It's clear who cares about this class. So far, there's 3 of us...3 out of 10. Sure, we've only done 100 sketches, haven't really gotten into project 2 (out of 4, and we have 7 weeks left); but those sketches had no meaning. In fact, there was so much emptiness in our sketches that only ONE person actually showed them. It's a lesson in patience.

You probably have some preconceived notion of our Chair Design project. Whatever that may be, throw it away. It boils down to this. Research a design movement, in my case the Swiss International Style of the 50's and 60's, study it, soak it in, establish relationships and discover motives and principles for that movement during that historical period of time. Somewhere in that discussion, make a connection between them and you. This connection becomes a story, with a central concept, that is then embodied through the design of a chair. Ponder this next time you sit down on what was conceived as "a chair." It's a lesson in patience.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Another 5:30 Morning.

Well, I guess it's about 6 now. Hank drove up a bit late, it's about 55 degrees and I didn't watch the news in my 9 hour run of homework time overnight. But the Astros and White Sox each won in fantastic games. It's hard readjusting to a new class and work schedule, homework load, and family time. I know most of you probably won't understand, but that's ok. You've been reading this journal for a while now and better be familiar with how things work at PC. Next week I'm off for New York with $20 in my wallet. Is that enough?

Tuesday, October 4, 2005

Soul Explosion.

And by that I'm not referring to a new Aretha Franklin album, I'm referring to the start of my 5th quarter at Portfolio Center. Unbelievable. 4 classes. Corporate Communication - evaluating style and function and the essence of a brand; Message and Content (first class is next week); Adobe inDesign - a multiple page layout program that is finding its way into the industry; and Modernism Theory & Criticism, a.ka Design History, a.ka Hank's class. Hank Richardson, the president of our school and highly respected individual in the field. We met this morning at 5:30am, yes 5:30, A.M...and we continue to do on Fridays. I have never taken so many notes in a single class on a single day and felt so motivated afterwards. We've 5 books to read over the course of the quarter, 4 large projects, and a trip to New York to visit some firms. This class is a PC staple I'm glad to have found my way into.

Saturday, October 1, 2005


The new season of Saturday Night Live is underway with Steve Carrell and Kanye West in the hosting and musical guest chairs, respectively. Man, they have already touched on today's hot topics. Bush, Jet Blue, and now Katrina. This sketch is admittedly, hilarious, primarily taking aim at celebrities, or as SNL says "rich people helping regular people." Woah. I think it's great that anyone can help in any way possible; but I also expect to laugh at anything possible while watching SNL. I can't wait to read how the rest of the world will react in the papers tomorrow. And that Al Pacino imitation was dead-on!

And now, a Girls Gone Wild spoof on Katrina and, that is insane, and quite funny.

Mike Myers and Kanye West once more...brilliant.

The Audience is Key.

Sure, Borders is primarily a book store, but I am primarily a movie and music person; so working upstairs in the Multimedia department is fine with me. I get to open all the new release boxes, put our security cases on them, and shelve them on the popular New Release wall. The titles are specific to certain areas of the wall, but ultimate placement is up to me. So naturally, I put things I'd like to see sell on optimum eye-level shelves. In the end however, the target audience will seek the album they came for. Take for instance this week's music new releases. Top selling artists in Rock, Pop, Country, R&B, and Classical categories are all represented, and what I thought would sell the most in the first 3 days, didn't sell much. Once again I got the demographics all wrong....but so did corporate. (quantity sold/on-hand inventory.)

5/20 - Ryan Adams - "Jacksonville City Nights"
0/13 - Renee Fleming - "Sacred Songs"
6/8 - Toni Braxton - "Libra"
4/4 - Neil Young - "Prairie Wind"
0/14 - Gretchen Wilson - "All Jacked Up"
2/60 - Sheryl Crow - "Wildflower"