Monthly Archives: October 2015

Interview with Daniel Zender

Daniel Zender is an illustrator, designer and educator. In this interview, Professor Zender shares a little bit about his life, interests and projects.

© Danile Zender, 2015

© Danile Zender, 2015

KW: Tell us a little bit about your background?
DZ: I grew up in Springfield, MO, which is pretty much in the middle of the United States. There wasn’t a lot of stuff to do, so I sort of had to make my own entertainment. I was outdoors a lot—biked everywhere, camped, went on float trips, explored the woods. There was one museum and the downtown area was about 5 square blocks. It was a fun place to grow up, but in my early twenties I was ready to leave the small town vibe for something a little bigger.

KW: Your first degree was a BFA in Graphic Design and Illustration from Missouri State University (MSU). Did you enter knowing you were going to study Graphic Design & Illustration? Why did you decide to go to MSU?
DZ: I knew that I wanted to pursue art when I went to college, but I didn’t really know what graphic design was, or illustration, or really anything other than a basic knowledge of design fundamentals. The decision to go to MSU is sort of a funny story. I wanted to go to the Kansas City Art Institute, so when I was a senior in high school my mom drove me up for a college tour. Our tour guide had pink hair and kids were smoking on campus…I think my mom was freaked out, ha-ha. She was against me going there, so we agreed (to my disappointment) that MSU would be better. I think it was a really good decision though, MSU ended up having one of the better design programs in the United States, and I got a good-rounded liberal arts education that was pretty affordable.

The teachers at MSU were all really great as well. Cedomir Kostovic and Eric Pervukhin were both from Europe and had a really great background in traditional skills that they imparted on their students. Stan Sante was an expert draughtsman who taught me the value of composition and hand skills. Maria Michalczyk was the head of the design department, and she did a really job of encouraging discipline but also individuality. The education was a lot more conceptual and thought-based compared to a lot of design schools that were more focused on advertising and agency work. I think I got a lot out of that experience and it still influences my work.

Daniel Zender, "Phantom Flush" - The LA Times – Art Director: Wesley Bausmith

Daniel Zender, “Phantom Flush” – The LA Times – Art Director: Wesley Bausmith

KW: Did you pursue graduate school immediately after MSU? Why did you decide to go to SVA? How did graduate school impact your work?
DZ: I took about two years off after MSU for a couple different reasons. I wanted to travel, and ended up saving money in Missouri so I was able to go to Europe and South Korea. I just needed some time to decide what I wanted to do with my life. I am really glad I took that time to work stuff out because it was during that period that I decided to drop the design path and do illustration full time. Springfield was an extremely cheap place to live and I was able to sort of do trial and error work while I was there. It was an incubation painting where I was making paintings, collages, screen-printing–all sorts of stuff to see what worked best.

The decision to go to SVA was more based around a desire to move to New York, which I thought would jump-start my career in illustration. In Springfield I had started to do some freelance work for The New York Times and a couple other newspapers, but I wasn’t really getting the amount or quality of work I wanted to be doing.

Going to SVA gave me the really unique opportunity to devote a lot of time and concentration to the work I wanted to be making. It allowed me to just create constantly, which is really what I needed. It also opened a lot of doors to people I would have not been in contact with in Missouri. I think it was a really great place for me to get all of the kinks out and start making work that had my own unique voice.

Daniel Zender, "New Theories of Distraction" - The New Yorker - Art Director: Deanna Donegan

Daniel Zender, “New Theories of Distraction” – The New Yorker – Art Director: Deanna Donegan

 

Daniel Zender, "Hiroshima" - The New Yorker - Art Director: Deanna Donegan

Daniel Zender, “Hiroshima” – The New Yorker – Art Director: Deanna Donegan

KW: Your illustrations have appeared in The New York Times, New Yorker, Newsweek, Playboy, LA Times, Boston Globe, Washington Post, Bloomberg Businessweek and Playboy. What were your first professional jobs and how did you find them? And what attracts you to the field? What was the most challenging job you have had to date?
DZ: The first projects I got were from the New York Times and the LA Times. Basically, I flew up to New York one Spring, determined to get my work in front of some people to hire me. Luckily two different art directors at the New York Times were willing to hire me, and a few months later I started getting regular work. All of those early assignments were from me just bothering people endlessly, emailing and sending promos in the mail. I was annoying people, I think, but it paid off. Looking back, I find a lot of that work to be pretty embarrassing…poorly made, sort of cliché concepts. But I think I learned a lot in those early stages and grew quickly.

The joy I find in illustration is all about the process. There is a ton of thought and planning that goes into every piece before the paint starts getting applied. Problem solving and conceptual thinking go a long way when it comes to making a successful final image. Of course, I still want to be an artist, and the best pieces I make are the ones that tie to an article, but still maintain a certain amount of ambiguity that give the viewer a chance to think for themselves. The hardest projects for me have always been the ones that I can’t directly connect to or have no interest in. I always make better work when the content I am illustrating speaks to me on a personal or conceptual level that I care about.

Daniel Zender, "Heatwave in Kirachi" - The NY Times- Art Director: Matt Dorfman

Daniel Zender, “Heatwave in Kirachi” – The NY Times- Art Director: Matt Dorfman

Daniel Zender, "Who will rule the world of Oil?" - The New York Times - Art Director: Aviva Michealov 6: Daniel Zender

Daniel Zender, “Who will rule the world of Oil?” – The New York Times – Art Director: Aviva Michealov
6: Daniel Zender

KW: What skills do you need to be successful in this field? What advice do you have for students wishing to pursue illustration (or design)?
DZ: I really think it is less about the quality of work, and more about the determination of the person. If you really love art or design or illustration or whatever, your chances of success are going to be much higher than someone who hates what they are doing but feel obligated to do it. Of course, it is best to be passionate AND good, but the number one tip I think I can give is to just keep pushing and trying harder. I have encountered so many people that I felt were successful or famous even though they weren’t necessarily great at their job, and it was because of their passion. You have to be doing something that is fun to do everyday, month after month, year after year, or you will get burned out.

Daniel Zender, "Syrian Refugees" - The NY Times - Art Director: Matt Dorfman

Daniel Zender, “Syrian Refugees” – The NY Times – Art Director: Matt Dorfman

KW: How would you describe your style/aesthetic? Who are your influences?
DZ: I have a dark sense of humour that is represented in simple, colourful graphic solutions. It comes from a lot of influences: horror movies, pop art, comics, Italian Art Deco, Swiss design, Polish poster design, modernism, Bauhaus, Renaissance painting…the list goes on and on.

Daniel Zender, "Eichmann in Israel" - The New Yorker - Art Director: Deanna Donegan

Daniel Zender, “Eichmann in Israel” – The New Yorker – Art Director: Deanna Donegan

Daniel Zender, "Nuremberg" - The New Yorker - Art Director: AD: Deanna Donegan

Daniel Zender, “Nuremberg” – The New Yorker – Art Director: AD: Deanna Donegan

KW: What prompted you to start HYDROCHLORIC (and what is it)?
DZ: Hydrochloric is a zine that I art direct and design, which asks illustrators and designers to interpret a new theme per issue. I put a new one out every 3-4 months. I started that project when I was at SVA….I had access to a photocopier that was open for students to use, so I took advantage of that. Now I print it slightly higher quality, with nicer paper. I am usually interested in getting a healthy mix of “up-and-coming” illustrators, people who haven’t been published yet, or are at the start of their career, and well-established people. I think it makes for a nice mix and gives people that are interested some new people to explore and get excited about.

(L) Daniel Zender, "Mermaid Towel" - Tictail - Art Director:: Dan Blackman; (R) Daniel Zender,” Enamel Pins”

(L) Daniel Zender, “Mermaid Towel” – Tictail – Art Director:: Dan Blackman; (R) Daniel Zender,” Enamel Pins”

KW: You have a number of self-initiated projects. If you had access to unlimited funds, what would be your dream project?
DZ: Lately all of my self-initiated work has been comics, before that it was a number of zines, and I am always making paintings based on themes. A popular painting project was my Light Terrors series. I have also started making clothing and pins and accessories…I like to try new things and see where they go.

If I had unlimited money, I think an installation would be really fun. I would love to fill a huge space with paintings, sculptures, interactive pieces, video…I love the idea of a totally immersive artistic experience.

KW: What skills or software do you want to learn next? Do you have any desire to animate your work?
DZ: Yeah, my goal right now is to start animating actually. It would be good to learn some of the basic animation software so I can start making little movies. Last year I made some very small animations for Halloween (they were basically .gif animations) that I ended up projecting on the wall across from our building. It was pretty successful.

Daniel Zender, "An American in Vietnam" - The New Yorker - Art Director: Deanna Donegan

Daniel Zender, “An American in Vietnam” – The New Yorker – Art Director: Deanna Donegan

KW: Your work has been recognized by American Illustration, Society of Illustrators, 3×3,Communication Arts, Creative Quarterly, Graphis, and HOW and you received the MoCCA Award of Excellence for “NOPE” and named one of ADC’s Young Guns of 2015. Has this fame made you an impossible person to live with?
DZ: Ha ha. You would have to ask my girlfriend, but no, I don’t think so. I am really humbled by all of that recognition and feel a certain sense of satisfaction knowing that I am the same person now that I was three years ago or whatever. I really hate when people let that stuff go to their heads, and I would be horrified if the same thing happened to me.

KW: What’s been the best exhibit you’ve seen in the past year?
DZ: The most recent one that comes to mind is the AV Motley show that is on display right now at the Whitney Museum. Of course, I just love the new Whitney Museum in general and would recommend checking it out if you have the chance.

Daniel Zender, "Fear" - La Peste - Art Director: Cecilia Ruiz

Daniel Zender, “Fear” – La Peste – Art Director: Cecilia Ruiz

KW: Do you think technology (mobile devices, etc.) is increasing the need for illustrators? What is your prediction for how technology will impact the field of illustration in the next 10 years?
DZ: I have seen a lot more illustration and animation work as a result of the rise in app usage, online platforms, etc, and it seems like people are starting to rely more on illustration as a way to communicate ideas and information. My prediction on the future of illustration is that there will be a lot more animated work illustrating content as more information is available exclusively online. The NY Times and MIT Technology Review are already using a lot more gifs on their websites instead of static images, and I have seen some really amazing websites incorporate interactive and moving images to illustrate articles that would have been normally accompanied by singles images or photographs. It is really amazing and exciting.

KW: What was the best piece of advice you ever received?
DZ: Don’t be a jerk.

________________________

KW: Kathryn Weinstein is an Associate Professor of Graphic Design, Queens College, CUNY
DZ: Daniel Zender is an Adjunct Professor of Graphic Design at Queens College, CUNY

 

Paid Visual Communications Internship

The intern will work with senior design staff on a variety of projects in and related to brand identity, across print, digital and interactive experiences. The individual should be creative, motivated, highly articulate and bring self-initiative to projects and daily routine. Candidates should have experience with InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop. Experience with motion and interaction design software such as AfterEffects is preferred. Their background should demonstrate facility across a range of media, including identity, print and interaction design.

Responsibilities include:

  • Participate in conceptualization and with assistance, develop preliminary concepts in to refined comprehensive design solutions
  • Individually and as part of a team, work on logo designs, visual systems, guidelines and presentations
  • Assist in producing and coordinating design audits
  • Conduct background research on identity and create mood boards for projects
  • Bring to life brand stories through print, digital interaction, animation and motion design
  • Assist in producing client presentations
  • Assist in gathering materials for case studies

Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated creative ability through a strong design portfolio across a range of static, dynamic and interactive media
  • Demonstrate high quality/accuracy in design standards
  • Ability to apply basic educational principles to creative work
  • Strong technical abilities in InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop
  • Proficiency in motion/film editing software such as After Effects and Cinema 4D a plus.
  • Strong organizational skills and an ability to set priorities and manage time
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills with the ability to clearly articulate ideas
  • Ability to constructively participate as part of a project team
  • Demonstrate a true passion for design and branding
  • Desire to proactively seek constructive feedback
  • Willingness and enthusiasm toward extending knowledge about technology/media, production process, design applications and working methods

The internship is a full time paid position for a period of 16 weeks (with some flexibility for students requiring a shorter internship period). Recent graduates and current students are encouraged to apply. Please ensure that you submit your online portfolio along with your application.

To apply, visit

Intern, Experience Innovation

At Lippincott:

We know that the experience is the brand. That’s why every day our Experience Innovation team focuses on creating new ways for brands to delight customers, engage further in their lives, and deliver unexpected signature moments.

We work closely with some of the world’s top brands, crafting big, bold ideas that will innovate their experience and keep customers coming back time and again. That’s why we look for the best problem solvers in the world – those who are strategic thinkers, creative innovators, and passionate people.

As an Intern, you are a valuable team resource. From start to finish on multiple projects, you bring excitement, a unique perspective, and the desire to learn to the team, along with hard work and dedication.

 

On an average day you will:

Think big

  • Participate in internal innovative brainstorming sessions
  • Coordinate and conduct brand experience audits

Synthesize inputs

  • Review existing research, business strategy, brand materials, and documents to better understand the client and their industry
  • Gather research, insights, trends, best practices, and consumer behaviors as inputs for the development of brand-centered experiences

Articulate ideas

  • Assist in the production of presentation materials, experience maps, and touch point analyses that act as visual representations of the brand strategy and guide innovative brand experience ideas
  • Develop content for decks and presentations

Manage and control

  • Take meeting notes and update files as needed
  • Coordinate with internal teams, production, and printing
  • Manage resources and the materials library

Build relationships

  • Work collaboratively as part of a team
  • Share a passion for the work that you do

We look for you to:

Be both creative and strategic

  • Currently study within a design degree program and show a passion for the humanities; or, currently study within a humanities degree program and show a passion for design; Masters students and recent graduates are also encouraged to apply
  • Have the ability to solve problems critically, logically, and creatively, turning insights into ideas
  • Have the ability to think big while also focusing on the details
  • Be rigorous in synthesizing inputs and developing insights
  • Have strong written and oral communication skills

Have a passionate personality

  • Show interest in brands and the commercial world
  • Be demanding, optimistic, thoughtful, and pioneering
  • Work well within a group setting, interacting professionally with team members and clients
  • Be a self starter with the ability to follow through with tasks to completion

Understand the visual world

  • Demonstrate an enthusiasm for and understanding of design
  • Be proficient in the Adobe suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign)
  • Preferable: Be proficient in developing 3D models (Auto Cad, 3D Max)
  • Preferable: Have experience designing spaces, environments, signage, and guidelines

To apply, vist

« Back to Openings

 

Paid Interaction & Motion Graphic Design Internship

Lippincott is looking for a hands-on junior designer with strong animation, interaction and motion design skills to join our team. You will work as part of a broader design team to bring brand stories to life through animation and motion; UI and IA design The ideal candidate will be an excellent multi-disciplinary designer with a strong motion graphics focus. They must also be willing to work across other medium in a collaborative environment.

Responsibilities:

  • Assist in producing and coordinating design and animation audits
  • Conduct and organize background research on identity as it relates at movement and animation
  • With assistance, develop preliminary concepts into refined, comprehensive design solutions that captures a brand’s essence in an animated form
  • Help in the development of storyboards for motion concepts as well as the editing of video material
  • Assist in producing client presentations
  • Assist in gathering materials for case studies

Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated creative ability through a strong design portfolio across a range of static, dynamic and interactive media
  • Demonstrate high quality/accuracy in design standards
  • Ability to apply basic educational principles to creative work
  • Strong technical abilities in InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop
  • Strong technical abilities in motion/film editing software such as After Effects and Cinema 4D a plus.
  • Strong organizational skills and an ability to set priorities and manage time
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills with the ability to clearly articulate ideas
  • Ability to constructively participate as part of a project team
  • Demonstrate a true passion for design and branding
  • Desire to proactively seek constructive feedback
  • Willingness and enthusiasm toward extending knowledge about technology/media, production process, design applications and working methods

The internship is a full time paid position for a period of 16 weeks (with some flexibility for students requiring a shorter internship period). Recent graduates and current students are encouraged to apply. Please ensure that you submit your online portfolio along with your application.

To apply visit

Asian American Center Scholarship

scholarship-flyer

The Asian/American Center is delighted to announce:
SCHOLARSHIPS!!
$2,000-$3000 to help QC undergraduate students complete their education

Awarded on basis of financial need and academic achievement (GPA 3.0 and above)
Must fill out FAFSA online https://fafsa.ed.gov/ before applying to the Asian/American
Freshman and transfer students encouraged to apply
Recipients will be eligible to re-apply on annual basis
Please download the Scholarships Description and Procedure, Student Application and

Faculty Recommendation form from the A/AC Website at: http://www.qc.cuny.edu/Academics/Centers/Asian/Pages/Scholarships.aspx

Return completed forms by MARCH 31, 2016 to:
A/AC Scholarship Committee

Asian/American Center Email your forms to:
Kissena Hall Room 315 OR qc.aac@qc.cuny.edu

For more information,
please contact the Asian/American Center at:
Tel: (718)-997-3050

Scholarships of up to $25,000 to both first time college students and community college graduates

dreamers

TheDream.US, the largest scholarship program for Dreamers, opened its Fall
Scholarship round on September 14, 2015.
The program offers scholarships of up to $25,000 to both first time
college students and community college graduates to attend one of the
Dream.US partner colleges.

For more information, please see
website: http://www.thedream.us/scholars/