Upon watching several videos from the Artist Series with Hillman Curtis the point that artists are strikingly different in perspective, philosophy and process becomes poignantly clear. Take for example Lawrence Weiner who detests Helvetica (unlike our new Swiss friends featured in the film) and offers Franklin Gothic as a working class typeface. He offers this advice to all:

“Be who you are, no matter how dangerous.”

You can take this artistically but also practically. No matter your personal aesthetic, you should embrace it; No matter your philosophical/religious/political ideals, own up to them and live them.

That message of strength comes in a different form with graphic artist James Victore, who’s work includes pointed characterizations on racism, the death penalty and small-pox-ridden blankets given to Native Americans. His philosophy is this: I’m pissed off and I’m going to do it my way. He looks at cultural commentary as the stuff graphic design was made for. Best quote ever:

“Graphic design is a big fucking club with spikes in it and I wanna wield it.”

Sure many designers can relate to this feeling but it’s important to understand the medium and the history of graphic design before one can threaten, and ultimately handle such a powerful weapon.

 

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