This is a link to all of my drawing and painting work, along with the photography I’ve done.
Interview with Leslie Bauman, Graphic Designer.
How did you get into graphic designing? I was always interested in art; In college I studied printmaking, 2D design, photography, etc. When I graduated i needed a job so I worked as a book jacket designer for a publishing company and I learned all the basic commercial and production tools.
How many years have you been in this field? Too many-- no really, ever since I graduated from school. You could say over 20.
Where do you currently practice? I've worked for all the major publishing companies (Simon and Schuster, Scholastic, McGraw HIll) but now I'm currently freelancing.
How many years did you attend school to become a graphic designer? 4 years at art school but I always took classes at SVA, FIT, etc. I'm still taking classes to learn new digital processes. Things keep changing so you have to always take classes or seminars.
Was it a difficult field to master? Or find work in? The best way to master the field is to get a job in a good studio and learn from people whose work you admire. Then you meet other people and make connections. Right now it may be difficult to find work but it's not always that way.
How has your field changed over the years? Styles keep changing, like fashion. A graphic designer is always aware of new trends in illustration, photography, typography, etc. With the computer everything changed because the designer could control so much more. Also the designer has to do more now, set the type, do the production, etc.
What skills would you suggest to someone hone who is perusing this as a career? Keep learning new digital techniques, but still practice drawing and those skills. Graphic design is about thinking and problem solving, translating a thought or idea into a visual. It doesn't matter how you do it but it's important to know all the software such as Photoshop, Illustrator, etc. Also look at the work of the great graphic designers of the last 50 years or so--Milton Glaser and Paul Rand are just two. Go to the AIGA gallery, places like that that have shows of interesting design.
What programs do you mainly use in your work? In Design, Photoshop, Illustrator
-Did you start off using these programs or were they different when you started? If so, what were they? They didn't exist. When I started we used a t square, triangle, rapidograph pens, exacto knives to cut overlays and make mechanicals, etc. Working with type was totally different. It was more limited in some ways, but better in some ways. You had to think more beforehand, do sketches, plan what you wanted. There weren’t thousands of fonts the way there are now. There are so many more possibilities now with typography, photography, images, etc. Sometimes too many. With the mac the designer can do everything -- set the type, design, do the production. etc. Also before InDesign there was a program called Quark--now everything is in one Adobe package and it's great.
What do you feel is the most important aspect of your work when working on a piece? Enjoy what you are doing and always think about the market, who the piece is for. Will it work for them?
Did you have a favorite piece of work? I still like some of the first things I ever did right out of school--because they actually got printed! I couldn't believe other people actually saw my work!
This is a movie poster for a new movie entitled “Safe” staring Jason Statham. While there is much to be said about the predictable plot, and type casting present here that is not the issue. I like the design of this poster because it gets right to the point. It tells you everything you need to know about the movie without having to be overly explicit or obvious. There is a girl standing behind him, whilst he points a gun at the camera. You can tell (even if the name of the movie wasn’t “Safe”) that he is attempting to protect her, and he is a no nonsense bad ass type character. Shocking for Jason Statham huh..
Another thing that I enjoy about this poster is the fact that the credits and such are written around the poster, rather than just at the bottom as they usually are. They are being used as decoration, a frame if you will.
Finally, the last thing I find very intriguing about this poster design is that the gun he is holding actually breaks the frame made by the credits, and even the frame of the photo itself. Creating a feeling of movement or action in the photo. As if he is really pointing it right at you threw the picture. Which further describes what his character will likely be like in the movie itself.
I like this design overall because it’s edgy and creative. It breaks the rules of your usual run of the mill posters and attempts to do something fresh. Which is rare these days.
In my personal life I was never really much of a do-er. Being an only child, I was a bit of lonely kid. Not to say I was anti social, I had plenty of friends I was just prone to spending a lot of time by myself thinking, observing people and their habits and generally figuring myself out. Oh yeah, and watching an inordinate amount of cartoons.
I think that is why I got into drawing. Like many teenagers, I grew up fairly awkwardly and art allowed me to let out all the things I couldn’t put into words. Although it didn’t start that way, once I finally developed some skill at it I could get my unhappy, negative, or dark feelings out on paper. I suppose it started as just a way to waste time, but it has developed into a real passion. Something that I want to spend my life doing. It became something that made me feel better about myself as a person and gave my life direction.
My work is mostly in pencil and pen. Cartoons and surrealist work mostly. As a kid, some of my favorite cartoons included Batman, Beavis and Butthead, and Courage the Cowardly Dog, and Cow and Chicken. Shows that were strange, observed, erratic or dark in nature always appealed to me more than the mindlessly happy shows other children enjoyed, this type of style is clearly observed in my work. I equate this to my love of punk rock music. It may be perceived by others as immature, childish, obscene, or scary. But really it is just a way of self expression that differs from the general public. And just because it is different, does not mean that it is wrong.
Unfortunately, many people along the way have not been able to understand my work, or other interests for that matter, without making extreme judgments about myself or my character. But there’s a part of me that prefers it that way. Because it is my belief art that doesn’t make you think, shock, or even offend someone, is not very progressive.
Not in all cases, but I have always been drawn to things that are very different. I suppose that is because I feel I can relate to these things, being that a lot of the time I feel very existentially isolated from my generation and I find it very hard for me to relate to most people on a deep level. And I think these feelings is what has helped me create some of my best pieces.
My name is Maddy. Or Madeline if you want to be formal, which I don’t. I have never cared for my full name. Ever since I was a child I always favored Maddy, I suppose because it suits me better. Some people don’t realize just how important their names are. It’s your title. It’s the single most important word in your life. It is something that secretly describes you as a person, sometimes we are not even aware of it but you can infer a lot about a person by the name that they go by.
Some people might say it is not up to you. Your parents decide your name for you, so how could it really describe you. I’ll tell you. Our titles are preset by our parents or parental figures and our stories are written around them. The simple fact that I prefer to be addressed with a shortened, and less formal version of my proper name can tell you a lot about my personality. I consider myself to be a pretty easy going person. I have simple needs. Good food, good friends, good conversation. As a child, and to a degree still to this day I never really enjoyed being serious about anything. Except for my art, but even in that I much prefer to draw cartoons rather than realistic work. The fact that I have not gone back to my proper name can tell you I still have yet to take myself seriously and retain that part of my childhood. Maybe one day I will be old and decide that I would like to be called Madeline, but I hope not. But I digress.
There are millions of names out there. Thousands of ways to describe oneself, and the word that is chosen for you secretly changes you and how people act towards you when you are introduced. Nicknames generally bring people into a assumed state of comfort with you, it makes them feel like they already know you. Because on some level, they have already subconsciously acquired information about you. Or at least they have made assumptions. Say if you were to introduce yourself as Jimmy, people will assume different things of you than if you introduce yourself as James.
I would get into people who go by names that are acquired later in life, such as “Killer” or “Tiny” other words that may be ironically clashing with their physical state or personality or directly describe them as people. but that is a whole different story. And I would like to say that i don’t approve of the premise but that may just be because I was never given a cool nickname like that. Those people it is pretty easy to tell their personality. They are probably immature, desiring peer approval, insecure.
Maybe I’m wrong about all this, these are just my thoughts.
All I know is that my name is Maddy. And it’s the one thing in my life that has always stayed the same.