More Sculpture Biography notes
As the semester soon comes to a close, the Professor and I are trying to get our last bits of work together before my official time as her intern ends. So today we were getting together more of the information and pictures that we need for the sculpture biographies for the website. I took the critiques that the professor had for me regarding the Lady Lotus and Going Forth Biographies and applied them to create revised versions of the webpages. I was understanding what the professor was saying last week about trying to not rely on text and there can be too much text on the page. Being more of a visual person myself I can relate to wanting to have the images speak more for themselves rather than relying on text. So I took out the titles of the series and just left it at ‘Sculpture Biographies’ at the top. I also replaced some of the pictures to clearer images of some of the sculptures that the professor provided for me. I was also able to start working on the Sculpture Biography for ‘The Music of Light’ series; but could not finish it since I was still missing some pictures and information for it.
The Professor and I met up to go over everything that I had worked on over the Thanksgiving break. So far she is liking what she was seeing regarding me applying the critiques to the webpages. However she was thinking about it more and she thinks that maybe we should remove the word ‘Sculpture Biographies’ of the pages entirely. Which at first I was a little hesitant about taking it off the pages then I realized and understood that maybe the viewer of the site will understand that we are trying to promote the pictures and show the pictures off more rather than rely on so much direction from text. We also discussed more about what more we need to create the sculpture bios for ‘The Music of Light’ and the ‘Wind Dancing’ series. The Professor and I will meet again next week and will send me more pictures and information to create those sculpture bios.
Sculpture Biography for ‘The Music of Light’
Revised Sculpture Biography for ‘Lady Lotus’ series
Revised Sculpture Biography for ‘Going Forth’ process
Notes for Sculpture Bios.
Last time the Professor and I met we looked at finalizing the header for her name on the site and settled on the Myriad font in white based on our opinions as well as opinions from other colleges. We also touched on moving onward from working on the homepage and finally delving into the other parts of the site, One of the site highlights would be the sculpture biographies. Sculpture Biographies are going to be essentially the processes such as sketches, studies, process photos for a particular sculpture as well as related sculptures for a series of a particular work. Since we already have the main layout of the site figured out, it would be rather simple to structure the layout for the sculpture biographies. I created two mock up pages for sculpture biographies based on some notes from a few months ago organizing the biographies in order. I created a sculpture biography for Going Forth and Blue Lotus since that is what we have in terms of notes right now. I showed these to the Professor right before her 3D Design class on Friday and she gave me some feedback.
The main thing she pointed out to me about the biographies were that she thought that there was too much text on the page. There was too much signaling that this was a Sculpture Biography and for whatever particular sculpture. The Professor did not like how it said “Sculpture Biographies – Going Forth” at the top of the page. She wanted the pictures of the works to represent and speak for themselves rather than text signifying what is what on what page. The text seemed to take away and crowd the page away from the main focus which are the pictures and seeing how each picture and each work relate to each other. This is a new aspect which I can understand can be frustrating since a lot of websites rely on text to point out what is what on a page etc. and not really taking the time to let the pictures breathe on their own without relying on text. Which is something that I can relate to since I know how it can feel to want to let something speak for itself rather than having something just point it out to you. I am going to apply these critiques of the type and create more mock ups for the Sculpture Biographies.
Lady Lotus Going Forth
Verdana in white Verdana in black
Myriad in black Myriad in white
The Professor and I looked over the spreadsheet of fonts that I created and she was fairly satisfied with what I came up with. She looked over the different font proposals and decided that she liked Myriad Variable Concept- Semi Bold and or Verdana the best. We are not sure whether black or white font is better so I just decided to come up with mock ups for both fonts in both black and white for each. We then meet up again later in the week and I come back with the mock-ups to look over them with her. She was geared more towards the Myriad Pro in white, and I would also have to agree that Myriad in the white looked the best compared to black or Verdana. We also took the opinions from other students in her Drawing class as well as other colleges of hers and they would also have to agree that Myriad in white looked the best. We also wanted to hear an opinion from Daniel, who is the other person working for Professor Taradash and wanted to update him on the website process.
I emailed him the mock ups of the headers and he said that everything about the site looks really good so far. His only recommendation was to check the color ratio between the purple background and the white or black font. He recommended a site called contrast-ratio.com where you would enter the color code and it would test the two colors together and would tell you whether they would have a good contrast and appear well together on a website and a green score would be a good contrast. I tested this and interestingly enough, contrast-ratio.com signified that the specific purple background we have against white is not a good score while the purple against the black would be a good score. I was worried that this would affect the Professor’s opinion on the white font. However, we are still considering to go with the white font since it stands out the best from the other contents of the site and think it is a good match. Daniel agrees on this as well despite the contrast-ratio.com results. So we finally have our header for the Professor’s name now we are planning on moving onto the rest of the web pages starting with the sculpture biographies which I plan to make mock ups of based on previous notes.
Font spreadsheet of different font choices for Taradash’s name for the homepage
So after the Professor and I met up a few days ago regarding the heading font for her name, she was happy with what I came in with. I was explaining to her that I tried to replicate the ‘Betmar’ font as closely as possible and that I found the best examples of the font on 1001fonts.com. We were going back and forth between the two fonts and the Professor actually determined that neither of the fonts that I found she is fully satisfied with. There are certain letters that look a certain way within the font that she isn’t really into. It wouldn’t be ideal to have different letters of her name be a completely different font, so we decided to scrap the two font ideas together.
What I came up with to do about this issue is to create a spreadsheet of the Professor’s name ‘Meryl Taradash’ in different fonts and sizes to compare and contrast different fonts with one another. And from there whichever one(s) she likes the best I will use that to create the new mock up page for her name. The Professor initiated that she preferred a sans serif font compared to a serif font since it gives the impression of being less restricted and crowded and more free-flowing which is something that is crucial for her site. I created the spreadsheet with the different font options and we will go from there on which one is the best for her during our next meeting.
The original ‘Betmar’ logo font that Taradash was inspired by to create her name for her homepage
After the previous meeting the Professor and I had discussing the new updates I made to the site homepage and some of the critiques the Professor gave me, I went home and applied her advice that she had. I took time away from working on the site design and worked on some other projects to give myself some time to refresh and relax. I decided I wanted to go in and look at the site with a fresh and clear mind. And I wanted to approach it in a new perspective of design and layout and really live up to the expectations of the Professor and her critiques. So when we met back up on Sunday at her apartment, I showed her the new and improved layout of the site based on the critiques. The Professor was decently impressed with the improvement and changes to the site. I fixed up a decent amount from the site to the type to the graphics and the photo etc.
However the typography and fonts were still a bit of an issue and needed some work. We sat down and looked at everything in a new perspective and tried to figure out what the Professor really wanted. She had the idea of looking at an old logo from a hat making company that was a family business that she designed for briefly when she got out of college. The logo was on a small plastic bag that stored a pair of gloves in it and the company was called ‘Betmar’. The reason why she liked this font so much was because it showed a sense of movement and progression within the font and direction. I took this idea and went home with it. Unfortunately I could not find the official and original ‘Betmar’ font for their logo so I had to improvise for this one. I went on 1001fonts.com and tried to find a replica font or something that looks as similar as possible and found two potential options for this idea. I am meeting with the Professor again later this week so we should be able to distinguish which font choice she likes better.
During this time we also went through and sorted out the paintings that were potentially going to be displayed on her website. We went through her computer documents and sorted through which are the best paintings to be featured on her website. We went through many wonderful paintings but narrowed it down to at least 10 or so paintings. We were able to get that done and out of the way as well as accomplishing the sculpture biographies and narrowing down the top 10 best sculptures. We have finally managed to get the main content of the site out of the way and decided on, now all we have to do is design the layouts for everything.
Sample font choices for Taradash’s name on the web homepage.
Images of Taradash’s 3D Design class and Foundation Drawing classes work displayed in the Grace Gallery
This past Monday I spent some hours helping out Prof. Taradash set up her class displays for the Student Show in the Grace Gallery at the school. She has her 2 classes which are Foundation Drawing and 3-D Design. I have helped Taradash set up the student shows for her classes many times before; almost every semester for the past 2 years. I have always had some interest in art curation and direction. It is cool to see what looks good together and what fits in with the show and really what story are we trying to tell here with the pieces on display. I also think that this is a good opportunity for starting out in the gallery world and art direction world.
We had a bit of a time limit however with Monday since I had class at 1 later that afternoon so we met up at about 10. We start out by going through the work for her 3-D Design class. Since it is a pretty small class with only about 10 students, there wasn’t as much to choose from compared to other semesters; regardless still had some great projects to display. We mess around with placement of projects on the table, eliminating, adding, shifting positions of all the projects. It is really about what looks good together and not just about who has the best projects. Once we finalized the set up for the 3-D Design class we moved onto the Foundation Drawing class which would be displayed on one of the gallery walls. Again it was about not just selecting the best work but which of the best work would look the best together. We only had 8 spaces on the wall but we ended up only choosing 7 since one work ran horizontal and took up about 2 spots. It’s very hard to narrow down a body of good work since you want to put everything in there but you simply cannot. I found that being one of the main struggles of art curation and direction. However I was not able to stay for the end of the organization for the Foundation Drawing class but I believe the end result of everything came out very nice.
Photos of Blue Lotus laid down on its side for cleaning.
Bottom left: other sculptures done by Taradash displayed in her studio
On Sunday November 3rd I spent some of my internship hours at the Taradash Studio. While when we usually meet we meet up at Taradash’s apartment to work on and discuss the website; we took a break from that and decided to do some hands on work at her studio that day. Taradash recently got back her sculptures Blue Lotus and Sisyphus. They were on display in a group kinetic sculpture exhibition entitled “Whirlwind: Art in Motion” in Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens in Kansas from April 2018 until October 1 2019. It was transported back to the studio about 2 weeks ago. During the time at the studio Taradash also got another sculpture back from an older client out in Long Island who had moved to a new house and gave the piece back to Taradash.
We start out the time there by protectively wrapping up “Hidden Radiance” from Long Island and trying to store it in the studio. Afterwards we dealt with taking care of Blue Lotus, which is an extremely tall welded aluminum sculpture that also had a perfectly balanced and rotating sphere on top supported by bearings. Our goal that day was to clean and wipe down the sculpture since it had been outside for at least 18 months. It had some dirt and grass and scratches out on the exterior. Before we could wipe it down we had to first lay the almost 13 ft high sculpture down on the floor carefully. So the Professor, her husband Wayne, another artist who shared the studio space, and I all lowered it down and supported it on the way down carefully on the floor. After this we got to work cleaning it and wiping it down. Eventually we were able to completely clean it. What I learned from this experience was that when you have a commissioned work in this case a sculpture. What an exciting feeling for an artist to know the work being placed outside will enable everybody to see it. But, when and if the sculpture is returned,the artist has to deal with some repercussions. The environment may affect the work therefore we were cleaning it. Or while on display or during transport, some areas may have gotten chipped or broken which require a repair. It is interesting to learn what’s involved having commissioned or loaned work outside. An artist/designer has an attachment to her work. Emotions run high.
Also an update to the website, I showed the Professor the spread sheet of her name in different fonts and she picked out the Verdana and the Myriad fonts as her favorites. I am going to create more mock ups of the site with her name in these fonts in both black and white and we will go from there.
Two final font choices that are favored by Taradash
Left: Original photograph by Mannie Garcia
Right: Promotional artwork by Shepard Fairey
This case study that was conducted in 2011/2012 was based on the controversy behind artist’s Shepard Fairey’s poster artwork for the Obama Administration. Fairey took photojournalist Mannie Garcia’s photograph that was under fair and public use and was allowed to be published, and created the infamous Obama ‘HOPE’ poster as a donation for the Obama Administration. Garcia worked for an AP or Associated Press which means that any photo that he took while on the job did not belong to him; it belonged to the AP that he worked for. Fairey’s intention behind the poster was to help promote Obama’s campaign after it was supposedly falling short. Also, Fairey was in fact a serious supporter of Obama and wanted to help him out. However, the Associated Press that Garcia was working for did not like this and sued Fairey for using Obama’s photo without permission or licensing from them. The AP claimed that Fairey copied the work from the photo instead of using the photo as a reference for his poster. This poster was created back in early 2007 and this dispute between the AP and Fairey did not settle until early 2011. Basically Fairey had to agree to not to use another photo from an AP without a license and has to go through certain financial terms that remained confidential. Fairey and the AP also agreed to share the rights that will hopefully make distributing posters like the HOPE Poster easier and both Fairey and the AP have agreed to collaborate in a new set of AP photos that will be acceptable for usage. I think that the outcome was a fair outcome since it was understandable that Fairey did not go through a license for using the photo, he would just now have to agree to be sure to go through licensing before using a photo. Overall I thought the outcomes were pretty fair and there were no harsh penalties on Fariey nor the AP.
Social media promotion display for Inktober and Artsnacks.
On Sunday October 13th a friend and I went out to Long Island City in Queens to attend an Inktober drawing event that was held in an Artist and Craftsman. Inktober was created by Jake Parker and is basically during the month of October you would create a new inked drawing every day based on a daily prompt. The event gave out some free art supplies like some pens and pencils or even brushes and ink. We were set up at different tables drawing inktober prompts and talking to other artists and illustrators from NYC or elsewhere. I would have to say this is one of the best networking events I went to by far since it was a hub full of illustrators and was the perfect place to network for me since I am doing Illustration.
During this internship with Professor Taradash we have had frequent meetings at her apartment with her other intern Daniel. During this time we have spent meeting up with each other we have been working on building the architecture for the new website for Professor Taradash. I would have to say that I look at both of them as people to look up to since they both have quite an amount of experience in the field and seem to have many connections with people. They are also great people to work with in a team and collaborative effort.
Another update to the website, since the Professor, Daniel and I met up this past weekend we created a brand new mock-up together and then on my own time I would polish the mock-up. I went and over the course of the week I designed a new mock-up based on the one we all created together this past weekend. I had another meeting with the Professor this week to talk about the new mock-up that I made on my own and to give me some critiques. The biggest and most meaningful critique I received was regarding her name on the homepage. I had her name in a serif font with lowercase letters. Taradash was explaining to me that she wants her name big and bold on the front page. There was a time where she wrote her name small and scripted and until someone put her name in big bold letters she realized that doing that she would appear to be more confident in her work. Going through that transition of having small scripted letters that doesn’t really pronounce or show that you are making a statement of confidence or wanting to be noticed. But having your name in big bold letters is something I learned is important to become noticed and to show that you are proud and confident in yourself and your work and this lesson is definitely something I will take with me throughout my career.
Polished mock up that I created
First original mock up that was made