Dan is an artist to the core. His work is often inspired by his heritage and growing up in Utah. It’s the story telling the audience had the pleasure of listening to that night. Dan shared his inspirations of growing up in a Mormon family but also his personal relationship with his father. He took us through a tale of childhood memories and like a book leading up to the crowning point, his story left us in a contemplative mood. It was a great night. And the work, well it speaks for itself.
Motion designer, illustrator, and maker Paul Anders closed off the summer with us in a sketchXchange with a twist. Not often do we have motion designers in, and to hear the process of animating on that side of the spectrum was new and intriguing. Paul however, is a fabulous humble illustrator and has participated in Put A Bird In It with us for the last two years, his interpretations of a bird house has always been stellar…and unusual much like the rest of his work, which I love!
His sketchXchange was a combination of gallery show, sketches, and a presentation of his motion work. He took us on a journey from starting out in the business as an artist for the yellow pages to his path of becoming a motion designer—which he’s been doing independently for many years now. It was a nice treat to have Paul in. If you ever get a chance to meet him at a sketchXchange be sure to swap an illustration with him, he’s got a way with the pen!
We had a very busy late summer and just in the middle of it was our sketchXchange with two talented dudes, TOM O’TOOLE and THOMAS BRADLEY of PIZZA FRIDAY. The night came on the heals of the ICON8 illustration conference that was in town. It was a hot July day and the sunshine, popsicle’s and pizza were quintessential compliments to the witty and light hearted duo of this talented team.
The Toms, as I like to call them shared their work in multitudes! The covered every inch of the walls we gave them with sketches, drawings, and finished pieces. The orange tape brought back memories for me of our first sketchXchanges, it felt right, like it was part of the show. And when I say show, that’s what I mean. Yes, they shared their process, but they also were themselves, a couple of dudes who work hard and play hard, and who will get you thinking and laughing all night long.
Portland’s Creative Community Raises $13K for Arts and Music Education.
As we helped wrap up the festivities of Design Week Portland last Friday night, Portland’s creative community came together to celebrate with us for the third year in a row. We filled a packed house at LeftBank Annex with well over 800 people, and showcased 78 birdhouses with an eclectic mix of style. What I love about this event is that it brings together communities to support each other. The design community, the art community, and the maker community intersect for one night to make it all happen. Building a birdhouse might be the catalyst, but giving back and raising money for Portland’s aspiring designers, artists, makers, and creative thinkers was our main goal.
Every year this event keeps getting better. We started early in the evening with our final sketchXchange of the year featuring Lisa Congdon as our guest artist. Lisa was the perfect speaker to wrap up the year, particularly because she encompasses so many things we love. She’s an illustrator, she’s an artist, and she’s a maker. She spoke to a sold out crowd of 200+ people and inspired and delighted us all. After sXc, we switched gears and the party really got started.
The night’s success goes out foremost to our WeMake team: Scott Baker, Tiffany Jennings, Emily Oliva, Jessica Caldwell, Celestia Grace, Susie Morris, Rachel Coddington, Robert Woodward, Megan Gex, Daniel Cole, Lea Loo, Chloe Miller, and Spencer Groshing for the many, many hours of work needed to pull the day off. Also, a big high five to Nathan Emerson, Jeremy Pair and Alise Munson for their contributions. Plus, a big thanks to the handful of volunteers who worked the night.
The night could not have been possible without the generous support of our main sponsors. THANK YOU! Vitamin T, Big Cartel, LAIKA, Campaign Monitor, and The Study. A special thank you to in-kind donations from Rose Bean Events, Scout Books, Jill Dryer, PrintGraphics, and Jeremy Pair. Lastly, thank you Adam Porterfield of Golden Rule Design, School of Rock, Tanner Goods, DJ Coast2c, The Wine Nomad, LoveBomb Go-Go, the PSU graphic design student volunteers, the awesome Put A Bird In It judges and Design Week Portland.
For me, this year was especially close to my heart because of the organizations we are giving back to. As a kid growing up without much, I coveted my sketchbooks and guitar. It took me a while to discover that if I wasn’t making art, I was sad. I was classified as at-risk of not succeeding all through school because of race and economic status—much like the kids benefiting from Friendtership. I remember the day when I understood the path I should be on and I remembered the people that helped me to discover it within myself—people like you who care and believe in dreams.
For everyone who made a house and attended the event, thank you for coming out and celebrating with us. You’re super awesome!
It’s not easy being a print maker, but the results of hard work pays off when you’ve created something on an old press. Wenkman goes beyond setting type or using polymer plates. Some of his most impressive work is with his hand carved reduction linoleum cuts, a method he uses to create that will WOW you. This is just one of the processes he shared with us at his sketchXchange back in June. It was a pleasure to have Keegan in, the work was amazing and he’s a true craftsman.
See more photos here.