Original Art Works.

May 16

“Where do ideas come from?”

Teachable Moment

SM.ideas.Parker_NewsletterArtwork
art by Curtis Parker

A brilliant idea can change your life. Just ask Steve Jobs. And think about it – how would one incredible idea affect your work? How would it affect your personal creating? Your career? Your confidence and opportunities?

These days, new ideas aren’t just inspiring; they’re essential. A narrow-gauge mindset doesn’t work in modern business. Consumers aren’t loyal to cheap commodities. No, they love the remarkable, the human, the unique. And those ideas don’t just fall from the sky. (Usually.)

So where do they originate? Since Scott Hull Associates is in the business of ideas, I figured our artists ought to know. They surprised me with their answers, citing everything from “cross-pollinating synergetic associations” to cracks in the driveway. Enjoy.
-Scott

Aren’t you silly…Ideas come from the stork, just like babies. Andrea Eberbach

A good problem-solving idea is birthed only after considering and rejecting a lot of bad ideas first. Von Glitschka

I’m not sure where they come from, but I’m pretty sure – starting in 2016 – that there will be a federal tax on them. -Mark Riedy

Generating good ideas is more often than not hard work, and the effort needs to be applied where it will do the most good both for the artist and for the resulting work. John Maggard

A mysterious internal response to an ever-changing external set of chance meetings. Lorraine Tuson

Ideas come whenever I am not looking for them. I have to take in all of the information and let it bounce around in my head for a bit. Then, when I am doing something that is not at all related to my problem, the ideas flow. I think it is the act of opening up your mind to all kinds of thoughts that you get those unexpected connections that lead to creativity. Lisa Ballard

I think ideas come from the process of play. Penelope Dullaghan

Ideas are the result of a wide open mind that is always asking the question “What if?”. After that, getting a few other people’s opinions will often make them better. Scott Matthews

The most common comment I hear when asked this is, “ideas are everywhere”. But to me that’s a cop-out because our society cannot see the forest through the trees. For me ideas come from staring at the stars, or a plant in the crack on the driveway. Yes, the Internet is also full of useful images, but where does one start? Back to the basics, I say! For me this is an endless journey, because problem solving is a passion of mine. Geoff Smith

Ideas are connections of thoughts, and there are as many kinds of connections to make as grains of sand on the beach. Ideas are formed from collisions, fusions, impacts– being playful, flexible, and curious with thoughts to see what can happen next. No thought or idea is too precious, and they can always be taken apart or regrown differently. Connections can be related directly to the work, or it can be connecting with another human being through conversation, remixing content to see what comes together, exploring something unfamiliar, looking at something like a stranger, asking why? how? and so on…. They don’t need to be approached with force, but sometimes just the softest combination of thoughts can lead to the answer. – Meg Hunt

Once all of the play is done, it’s time to see which of the ideas might have merit for the problem at hand. Maybe some that are seemingly way off base will lead to something else by association. This is the portion of the event that we must judge or deem relevant to solving the problem. That, and a healthy amount of sketching, usually bring good results.Larry Moore

May 14

Curtis Parker + Health Progress Magazine

Our good friends at Catholic Health Association commissioned Curtis Parker to illustrate an issue focused on immigration. Not just one or two illustrations but the whole issue with seven illustrations.

“When this project landed on my drawing board I was excited by the idea of being the sole illustrator for the entire issue with six full page images and the cover image as well. It was a challenge with the theme of immigration throughout that my illustrations would have a fresh viewpoint and not be redundant. But I loved the idea that there was this continuity of theme as well as a continuity of painting style with a single illustrator. As a result the magazine issue has a solid design look and feel.”

“My approach was to send rough sketches to the new editor, Mary Ann Steiner, then through a conference call focus on the images chosen or new direction in some cases. I wanted the final images to be graphic and colorfully textured to give a sense of optimism and hope. It was a work of collaboration. I owe much of its success to the discussions between myself and Ms Steiner and our shared vision of this issue of the magazine.”

Mary Ann explained that their magazine uses one illustrator per issue so the illustrator can really get a feel for the theme and play out the different facts with related images.

She also expressed how fortunate she feels Health Progress is to be able to work with illustrators, “who carefully read the articles and come up with creative visuals that lead our readers into the story or insight”.

Thank you Mary Ann for the opportunity!  Looking forward to another issue.

Curtis Parker cover for Health Progress

Curtis Parker for Health Progress Magazine on Immigration

Curtis Parker for Health Progress Magazine of Nigerian Woman

Curtist Parker for Health Progress Magazine about playgrounds

Curtis Parker for Health Progress Magazine on Immigration the dove

May 14

Curtis Parker Shares the Steps to a Panera Bread Mural


Did you know Panera Bread builds each bakery cafe from the ground up, with architects and designers thinking through all aspects of the project, including which neighborhood it’s in? Realizing that, it makes sense that they wouldn’t choose off-the-shelf art for their carefully considered spaces.

In the case of this custom mural for a building-site in a California location, SHA artist Curtis Parker cooked up a 40 x 12-foot painting that reflected the history of the city, as well as evoking the feel that Panera was looking for. Local planners emphatically conveyed that the mural could not be about Panera itself, but Parker still managed to create a piece that can be identified as part of the ‘Panera feel.’

VP / Design Creative at Panera Bread Jay Jung said “It turned out to be an amazing piece of art and full of incredible detail and activity” and we’d agree. Curtis did a fantastic job. Jay also mentioned enjoying the collaboration with Curtis, saying “it worked beautifully, just discussing the objectives of the project directly with the artist.”

As a little bit of project trivia, Jay added, “If there just happens to be a small group of work men in an obscure corner of the mural enjoying a sandwich from Panera, I really can’t tell you how that got in there!”

It seems that pleasing companies and zoning officials alike is a rough task, but one that was artfully mastered by a master creative himself, Curtis Parker.


Rough Sketches
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Final Sketch By Artist
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Panera’s Final Presentation Draft
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Panera’s Emeryville, CA Store Mural
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Close-up of Mural
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Close-Up Detail of Mural

May 2

Penelope Dullaghan: Cover Illustration for Spirituality & Health Magazine

So excited to finally share this cover I did for Spirituality & Health Magazine! I worked with art director Sandra Salamony to come up with this idea based on the cover story of “embracing your stress” … not all stress is all bad! In fact, sometimes it gives you super-human strength when you need it. So you can do stuff like lift elephants with one hand. :) Here’s the final:

Penelope Dullaghan from Scott Hull Associates for Spirituality&Health cover

Penelope Dullaghan with Scott Hull Associates share the final art for Spirituality&Health

And here are the sketches leading up to it:
Penelope Dullaghan with Scott Hull Associates sketch for Spirituality&Health

Penelope Dullaghan with Scott Hull Associates, sketch_stormysea for Spirituality&Health

Penelope Dullaghan with Scott Hull Associates, sketch sharks for Spirituality&Health

Penelope Dullaghan with Scott Hull Associates, sketch lifting an elephant for Spirituality&Health

Oh! And S&H asked me to be the featured artist and invited me to either send a photo of myself or do a self-portrait. So I did a self-portrait (using one of my patterns from my growing patterns library)! :)
Penelope Dullaghan with Scott Hull Associates self portrait for Spirituality&Health

Peneloep Dullaghan self portrait

Apr 30

Tremendousness Builds the Ad Version of the Internet of Things. There’s a lot to it.

Tremedousness from Scott Hull Assoicates for the America Advertising Federation/ ADMERICA 2015
Right there on their homepage, the Tremendousness Collective says “We make complex things understandable and engaging.” And thank goodness—there are more complex things to understand than ever, and the rest of us can use all the help we can get.*

*Obligatory Impressive Supporting Statistic: In 2010 The Economist noted that mankind had, just in that year, created 1,200 billion gigabytes of data. Five years before, it was only 150 billion. What about this year? We’re afraid to check.

But when The American Advertising Federation (AAF) asked Tremendousness for help creating their identity for their 2015 national conference, ADMERICA, the team opted to celebrate complexity—if you can’t beat it, illustrate it, right? What they made was an ad version of the Internet of Things—depicting an intricate, energizing network that actually seems fun instead of overwhelming. Well, maybe a little of both.

You can follow the arrows through the whole advertising process, from concept to delivery (multi-channel delivery, naturally), circling the country as you go, and wind up in Las Vegas, where the conference will be held.

The AAF loved it, and extra loved that they can segment it any way they like to tell different stories.

Would you like to see how Tremendousness can take your projects to the next level? Just chick here to contact me.