Coming in 2015: Guild Webinars on Responsive Design, Web fonts, and Game Design
Posted by Rebecca Blake on December 22, 2014
We’ve been working on new Guild webinars for 2015, and have lined up a full slate for the first quarter. Our confirmed presenters so far are Eric Fadiman on Responsive Web Design (February 18), Dana Leavey on Positioning & Marketing Yourself as a Designer (March 18), and Joey Ellis on Game Design & Development (April 15). Bookmark our website for updated news on Guild webinars, or follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Or keep an eye out for our emailed invitation.
Guild members are invited to join our webinars for free – please pre-register since space can sell out. Non-members can attend for $45. You can also view our archived webinars. Members can log into our website to view all our archived webinars for free. Non-members can view any single archived webinar for $35. Our most recent archived webinars are The All-Illustration Pricing Game, and Anatomy of a Design Proposal with Michael Janda.
Hold That Card: Holiday Waste
Posted by Rebecca Blake on December 11, 2014
Four million tons of wrapping paper and bags, 2.65 billion holiday cards, enough ribbon to wrap around the earth several times: when it comes to holidays, Americans go big. As Jason Powers illustrated in this infographic, in the United States over a million tons of landfill waste is created per week in the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Years. The waste goes beyond just paper goods: we also throw away about 25% of purchased foods, and 60% of us receive gifts we really don't want.
The news isn't all bad though; we're far less materialistic than the statistics on waste might indicate. About 70% of us welcome less emphasis on gifts and spending, and 52% of us pass on those unwanted gifts (hopefully to recipients who truly enjoy them). Powers pulled together the infographic from data acquired from RecycleWorks, the Environmental Protection Agency, and Gallup. The data is three years old; Powers created the graphic in 2011. We'd be intrigued to see where the numbers stand now that the economy has been in a slow recovery.
Infographic © Jason Powers. Used with permission.
Illustration/Animation Project Yule Log 2014 Donates Licensing Fee to C/I
Posted by Rebecca Blake on December 08, 2014
The second season of Yule Log (Yule Log 2.014) has been published, featuring the illustration and animation efforts of over 80 artists. The website features 70 short animations of yule logs curated by the animation studio Oddfellows. This year’s selection features the imaginative creations we’ve come to expect, such as the espionage-inspired Silent Knights by Joe Russ, Ben Tillett, and Syd Weiler; Chris Lohouse and Salih Abdul-Karim’s homage to 1920s cartooning, Stay Tooned; and Erin Kilkenny’s lovely retro, Smoke on the Water.
Yule Log creator Dan Savage designed the project to reimagine WPIX-11 (NY) TV’s Yule Log broadcast loop. Last year’s publication was a huge success, with over 1 million viewings and extensive coverage in industry blogs. This year, Viacom/MTV licensed Yule Log 2.014 to play in their lobby. Their licensing fee – all $2,000 – was donated to C/I, an organization which teaches computing, leadership, and professionalism skills to underserved high school students in after-school programs, camps, and paid summer internships.
Top right: Dan Savage's contribution to Yule Log.
Below: (clockwise) Silent Knights by Joe Russ, Ben Tillett, and Syd Weiler; Stay Tooned by Chris Lohouse and Salih Abdul-Karim; So You Say There's a Chance by Ege Soyeur and Nick Petley; Log Ride by Impactist; Smoke on the Water by Erin Kilkenny; and Hello Old Friend by James Wignall.
So What Kind of Logo Can You Get for $5?
Posted by Rebecca Blake on November 11, 2014
Sacha Greif wondered just that when he heard about the bargain basement job site Fiverr, which connects buyers with sellers willing to provide their services – from business plans to programming to creative services – for only $5. Fiverr has been aggressively promoting their design services, exhorting businesses to “put an end to being ripped off” by paying $100 for a logo. In contrast, the website promises “unique design, fast and affordable.”
Grief had reason be intrigued. In 2011, he started an online service, Folyo, which connects businesses to vetted freelance designers. However, unlike Fiverr, Folyo places the budgets for the services provided by their designers at between $1,000 and $10,000, depending on the project. Fiverr’s promise of “a custom design project” for only $5 seemed impossible. To investigate the quality of work he would receive, Greif created a fictitious company, SkyStats, and went to Fiverr to find a designer to create a logo.
As described in his article on Medium and on his blog, Grief noticed that the quality of the designers’ work quickly dropped off as he browsed through their portfolios: “…the quality would suddenly drop after a few pages, quickly going from sleek, glossy renders to amateurish, clumsy clip-art…these designers were appropriating other designers’ work, and passing it off as their own.” A Google reverse image search confirmed his suspicions. (Fiverr designers have a reputation for stealing work; Jeff Fisher of Logomotives has long been documenting Fiverr designer ripoffs on Twitter.) Greif also discovered that the claim of a $5 logo was a bit misleading; requesting “add-ons” such as source files or copyrights to the work added a whopping $20-40 to the fee.
Greif finally settled on three designers who portfolios appeared to carry only original work. The designers reassured him that they would only deliver original concepts. The initial logo designs ranged, in Greif’s opinion, from “bad to surprisingly good”, and he posted the results on his blog. That’s the point at which the story became complicated. Commentators on the blog soon reported that the work of two of the designers – the best work – was ripped off, and posted links to stock agencies carrying the graphics. In fact, the origin of one of the designs, a dimensional cloud graphic, is still up in the air – no pun intended. The work appears both in the Dribbble and Behance portfolios of a Russian designer, and on the stock image site, Dreamstime.
Greif contacted Fiverr to complain that their designers are selling infringed work, and not surprisingly, never heard back. (Fiverr’s terms state that services which engage in copyright or trademark infringement may be removed from the site, and the sellers of such services may be banned.) Greif is remarkably sanguine about cut-rate logos, comparing them to fast-food burgers. But his experience with Fiverr has soured him: “…people trying to deceive you by passing other people’s work as their own, and stock art as original work is another matter altogether. Sadly, this is the kind of incentives you create when you drive price down to such an extent.”
Art Against Ebola: Illustrator Otto Steininger and Friends Respond to the Crisis
Posted by Rebecca Blake on October 21, 2014
Award winning illustrator Otto Steininger has rallied the talents of his colleagues in creating a means to generate funds supporting Ebola relief efforts. Art Against Ebola sells artwork created by a number of prominent artists, including Steven Guarnaccia, Melinda Beck, Edel Rodriguez, and Aya Kakeda. Twenty-one artists contributed illustrations of snake heads, which were combined onto a body spelling out “Ebola.” Proceeds from the sale of the artwork benefit Last Mile Health, an organization which provides training to health workers servicing remote villages in Liberia, one of the nations hardest hit by the Ebola crisis.
Artists Against Ebola is commendable, in that fees generated by sales of the artwork go directly to Last Mile Health. Interested buyers purchase the artwork by making a direct donation in the appropriate amount to the organization with Artists Against Ebola and the participating artist credited in the dedication. Individual prints of each head can be purchased for $75, and prints of the entire piece are available for either $350 (17”x17”) or $500 (24”x24”). The original artworkfor each head can also be purchased for $250.
While progress has been made in stemming the rate of infection, Ebola continues to take lives and destroy families. Organizations such as Last Mile Health provide crucial services in fighting the epidemic, and in rebuilding the fragile health care system in Liberia, already ravaged by years of civil strife. Steininger’s hope is that Art Against Ebola will raise much needed funds. With that in mind, a lovely piece of artwork seems to be the perfect Hannukah or Christmas gift this year.
Top right: Otto Steininger's print for Art Against Ebola; below: the 21-header serpent print.
© Otto Steininger. Used with permission
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