Blog Category: VisCom1

“Growth” in the Wild!

By Erika Goering,

On a trip to Powell Gardens a couple of weeks ago, with dots and circles fresh in my mind, I stumbled upon a composition based on (you guessed it!) circles!

It’s almost the exact idea I had for my group’s version of “Growth”.

It’s nice to know I’m on the right track with my ideas. It makes me feel like I know what I’m doing.

  Filed under: Find&Share, KCAI, Random, VisCom1
  Comments: 1

Words and Title for My Dots and Circles

By Erika Goering,

My final words for my computer-related project are:

  • Process
  • Calculate
  • Store
  • Evolve
  • Protect
  • Connect Network
  • Monitor
  • Infect
  • Alienate
My final title is Techtonic.
I’m feeling pretty good about it all.
I hope this good feeling lasts awhile. It makes all my hard work worth it.

  Filed under: KCAI, Typography1, VisCom1
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By Erika Goering,

I started off with Family as my word to work from.
It somehow turned into something completely different.
Here’s what I have now:

Family -> Support -> Balance -> Weight -> Gravity -> Science
Under science, I have:
  • observe
  • discover
  • knowledge
  • wisdom
  • trial
  • error
  • failure
  • momentum/speed
  • projection
  • justice (from scientific law, in case you were wondering where it came from)
  • obey (also from law)
  • authority/subordinate (not sure which one I like better)

For Computer-related things, I have:
  • virus
    • infection
    • illness
    • death
      • ending
      • mourning
      • inevitable
      • upcoming
  • virtual
    • intangible
    • abstract (vs. concrete)
    • imaginary
    • concept
    • idea

  Filed under: KCAI, VisCom1
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Find & Share

By Erika Goering,

For my find & share exercise, I chose to talk about an artist whom I know personally.
My mentor and friend, Ben Timpson.

Ben was the Lead Artist in the graphic design studio at MyARTS for the first couple of years that I worked there. He’s incredibly talented and pretty damn fearless. He literally puts himself into his work (he sometimes uses his blood as a material in his work). It’s that kind of commitment and sacrifice that I admire.

This is Ben’s “Centerfold,” made from a lily and part of a cockroach. Yes, you read that right.
The asymmetry in this piece shows a sense of movement and elegance in the figure. She seems like she’s dancing and floating around that space. The heavier, darker part of her skirt on the right side of the image balances out the rest of the figure on the other side.

There is a bit of continuation used with the implied connection between the figure’s head and her body. It’s totally disconnected, but it feels like it’s not.

The materials used also make a statement about the piece. A beautiful lily and a creepy bug. The contrast between the two materials describes the complexity of the figure. She is wearing a long, flowing, beautiful flowery skirt, but her upper body is made of this exoskeleton of armor.
She’s strong and beautiful, protected and vulnerable, feminine and rugged.
I think the asymmetry helps accentuate that as well.

  Filed under: Find&Share, KCAI, VisCom1
  Comments: 1


By Erika Goering,

In response to this post, I have to say that the readings and video expanded my idea of what graphic design really is.

I work in an environment where what we do as designers is greatly limited to what will sell to our clients. We really only get to do “personal work” twice a year at our art show in the fall and auction/fundraiser in the spring.
After awhile, I got myself into a bit of a rut with my design work. Same ol’ stuff day after day, mostly. (I mean, I love logos, t-shirt designs, and websites to death, but I realize there’s so much more than that. Especially since watching that video. Man, I wanna be more awesome than ever now!)

My definition of graphic design before seeing the video was very limited and narrow. Because I don’t do much design work outside the realm of what my job requires.
But I want to change that. (That’s why I’m in school; to rediscover my creativity that got me here in the first place.)

I think everyone in the graphic design world has a somewhat loose idea of what to say when people ask “so, what do you do?”
I just kinda rattle off all the tasks I do at work because “graphic design” isn’t a sufficient answer for most people. They usually just reply with “so… you make signs and stuff?”
That’s where I say “Yeah. But mostly the ‘and stuff’ part.”

The video and reading from the aforementioned post gave me a bit more to pull from when I want to put a definition to the words graphic design.
Stefan Sagmeister sums it up pretty well when he shows his work in the video and on his website. He has done lots of analog, tangible stuff, by the way – not the purely digital comfort zone that I’m familiar with.
The tangible aspect of his definition of graphic design is what changes the game for me.
Touch it.
Taste it.
Feel it.
Be it.

That’s what it is.
Graphic design is an experience.

No matter how broad or precise my definition is of graphic design, it’s still damn near impossible to explain to my mom what graphic design actually is. (Yes, mom, I do computer stuff, but that’s not all…)

  Filed under: KCAI, Read&Respond, VisCom1
  Comments: 1

Why Graphic Design?

By Erika Goering,

I’ve always wanted to be an artist.

Seeing how passionate my dad is as an artist made me want to see if I had the same passion about art.
And I do.

I’ve always been exposed to art. I literally grew up around it. I have memories of being a small child and the house being full canvasses and paint.
When I was old enough to hold a crayon (maybe two or three years old), I drew everywhere. My dad said that I once took a green crayon and drew on the front door the outline of a group of trees across the street.
That’s when he knew. He was certain I was going to be an artist no matter what.

I knew I wanted to be an artist, but I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to do for a living.
I wanted to be an artist like my dad, but I wanted to pay my bills, too.

When I was in high school, my favorite art teacher gave me a flyer advertising a new art program downtown called MyARTS. It would start off as an unpaid apprenticeship and end up paying minimum wage.
I went for it. (An art job that made money?! Heck yeah!!!) I knew it was a rare opportunity, so I signed up for it right away.
I had originally signed up to be in their photography department. But I didn’t get in, and graphic design was my second choice.
I got into the graphic design department, and I was ecstatic. I knew this program was going to change my life.
It was at MyARTS that I discovered my love of graphic design.
I had a very passionate mentor who taught me everything he knew.

4 years later, I’m still working at MyARTS. I’ve moved up the ladder from apprentice to “young artist” to “lead artist assistant.” I am grateful for every day that I’m there. I’m now helping to mentor high school kids the way I was mentored.
And, yes, it changed my life.

I know graphic design is what I need to do because of how it makes me feel. Nothing else makes me this happy. When I create something I feel like like it created me.
That’s how I know this is what I need to do.

  Filed under: KCAI, VisCom1
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