The New Page of the Odd Hobby

You spoke and I listened. By popular demand, I've added a new section at the Cabin, The History of Me. It's an ongoing project of my disturbing hobby, the ever growing family tree and images me replacing relatives.

Sean Adams

Sean Adams is the Chair of the undergraduate and graduate Graphic Design Program at ArtCenter, founder of Burning Settlers Cabin studio, and on-screen author for LinkedIn Learning/Lynda.com He is the only two term AIGA national president in AIGA’s 100 year history. In 2014, Adams was awarded the AIGA Medal, the highest honor in the profession. He is an AIGA Fellow, and Aspen Design Fellow. He has been recognized by every major competition and publication including; How, Print, Step, Communication Arts, Graphis, AIGA, The Type Directors Club, The British Art Director’s Club, and the Art Director’s Club. Adams has been exhibited often, including a solo exhibition at The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Adams is an author of multiple magazine columns, and several best-selling books. He has been cited as one of the forty most important people shaping design internationally, and one of the top ten influential designers in the United States. Previously, Adams was a founding partner at AdamsMorioka, whose clients included The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Disney, Mohawk Fine Papers, The Metropolitan Opera, Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, Richard Meier & Partners, Sundance, and the University of Southern California.

Looking for Facts

Tsunehisa Kimura

Maybe some of you remember five years ago when the call to action for designers was the avalanche of information to come. The future would see information exponentially increasing. We would all be buried under masses of data and no way to interpret it. Designers could solve this and organize chaos into order.

The doomsday predictions were partially correct. We are buried under a mountain of information that relentlessly enters our lives. Between mobile devices and social media, we can find information on any subject, although it may not be correct. Rather than creating a culture of schizophrenia and shell shocked consumers of information, we all seem to deal with the avalanche with the answer, "so what? Yeah, I ignore most everything."

I have several books on diagrams and information design. My favorite was published in the early 1970s. The diagrams are so carefully planned and meant to be understood. The goal was to take information and make it easy to understand and digest. Today, I often see the goal to take easy to understand information and design a solution to make it seem more complex. Although I could just be getting dumber.

Sean Adams

Sean Adams is the Chair of the undergraduate and graduate Graphic Design Program at ArtCenter, founder of Burning Settlers Cabin studio, and on-screen author for LinkedIn Learning/Lynda.com He is the only two term AIGA national president in AIGA’s 100 year history. In 2014, Adams was awarded the AIGA Medal, the highest honor in the profession. He is an AIGA Fellow, and Aspen Design Fellow. He has been recognized by every major competition and publication including; How, Print, Step, Communication Arts, Graphis, AIGA, The Type Directors Club, The British Art Director’s Club, and the Art Director’s Club. Adams has been exhibited often, including a solo exhibition at The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Adams is an author of multiple magazine columns, and several best-selling books. He has been cited as one of the forty most important people shaping design internationally, and one of the top ten influential designers in the United States. Previously, Adams was a founding partner at AdamsMorioka, whose clients included The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Disney, Mohawk Fine Papers, The Metropolitan Opera, Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, Richard Meier & Partners, Sundance, and the University of Southern California.

A Map of the World

Last night I had dinner at Jar with my good friend, Michael Bierut, who is always a perfect dinner partner providing a mix of great stories and smart insights. I regretted the 2 martinis at 3:00 in the morning, but that’s probably a bigger issue. Michael talked about some of the things that tie all designers together. Since I had the two martinis I don’t remember what they were, but I do recall they were smart ideas. I know that as designers, we share the predilection to collect and covet odd items that others find confusing. One of the items that I collect, and you may find this hard to believe, is Disneyland and Walt Disney World maps. I love that there are so many different types. Some rely on illustration to give a simplified overview, while others detail every building. Each exists to help direct a guest around the park, but they all presume different ways that the guest thinks. Anyone who has ever designed a signage program has faced the problem that a client insists on a floor plan for a directory. But, large percentages of people stare at floor plans and have no idea how to read them. The next time an office building or hospital signage program needs a directory, I’m going to follow the cute 3d building and funny people with a trombone style.