Pabst Blue Ribbon can design contest

Pabst Blue Ribbon can design contest

Every year, after the submission deadline is closed, of course, I hear about the Pabst Blue Ribbon Art Can competition, and every year, I say “I’ll enter that next year.” Well no more. This year, thanks to the magic of Twitter and my ability to read a calendar reminder, I am finally on top of things. Pairing a my newfound enthusiasm for pen and ink drawing with a surprisingly difficult-to-honor commitment to draw every day, I’ve managed to carve out some time to work on my concept of the Happy Hour Superhero, submitted to PBRart.com last night. With hidden references to the Pabst brand throughout the illustration, I can say this was a blast to work on…so much so that this was actually my second version. The first had some fundamental issues that I could have probably fixed in Photoshop but I wanted to keep the art as authentic as possible. The chance to have my design featured on something as iconic as the PBR art can is enough of a draw that I may even try to come up with another design to submit before the August 31st deadline. Fingers crossed! A photo posted by aaron thomason (@aaron_t) on Jul 13, 2015 at 11:12pm PDT Also on Relatively Average: Justa Poboy – An Edgar Allen Poe Illustration Gimme a hint Lucky...
Arizona Backyard Brew & Boil

Arizona Backyard Brew & Boil

I recently had the opportunity to design a logo for and then attend an awesome event that I never even knew existed…the annual Arizona Backyard Brew & Boil. For a first-timer, this event is a little difficult to describe, other than to say it’s one big yard party. Given a collection of previous years’ logos and a “go nuts” directive, the only real constraints were that it needed to fit in a 3-inch square and work in one color, as it will be used on the beer glasses. Incorporating as many of the cajun party elements I could from previous designs, it seemed like wrapping them in the outline of the state of Arizona (which is almost a square anyway) was the way to go. Varying sizes of custom type contributed to the free-for-all attitude I was going for. Even though the logo design was out of the way, I still had no idea what the event was really about. What it is: a back yard in a swanky suburb in downtown Phoenix, transformed for a day into a cajun food and music fest, complete with a real crawfish boil. A giant cauldron of live crawfish are boiled with corn on the cob, garlic, sausage, potatoes, and who knows what else, then strained and poured onto tables set up around the yard. Attendees jump in, elbow to elbow, vying for position, suckin’ dem heads and pinching’ dem tails, with juices and butter and sometimes the less-than-appetizing insides of the crawfish dribbling down chins and forearms, while another batch of ingredients are loaded into the cauldron. This is done without changing...
Lucky Me

Lucky Me

For the past couple of weeks I’ve been working on a design for a vintage BMW get together in San Diego over St. Patrick’s Day weekend, but I’ve been stuck in a total creative block. Now that St. Patty’s Day is a little over three weeks away it feels like I’m getting closer now…at least I’ve got the elements I need in some kind of layout: Also on Relatively Average: Bang Head Here Gimme a hint Arizona Backyard Brew &...
It’s all about the cameras…

It’s all about the cameras…

I’ve been soaking up the coverage of the Curiosity Mars Rover since it landed on martian soil, and on Twitter came across the specs for the 2.5 billion dollar vehicle. I had to do a graphical side-by-side for comparison. Also on Relatively Average: Lucky Me Back to basics with Field Notes Phoenix...

Marketing vs. Usability

I’ve been working on an accompanying post to this chart, but I think the image may speak for itself. Also on Relatively Average: The desktop F-bomb Lucky...

Bang Head Here

I’ve had one of those weeks. Unfortunately it’s lasted about a month. Besides the gravity of home ownership settling in after the new purchase (mostly brought on by a steady stream of problems), I then managed to get sick and miss two days of my 9-to-5 gig. Which, incidentally, runs from 7AM to 4:30PM. On top of it all, I’ve been dealing with a new client regarding a design job. If you’ve been following my random 140-character mini-rants on Twitter, you kind of know what I’m up against. For those of you who aren’t yet addicted, here’s a synopsis: Client hires me to create a full identity for a new company. Business system, collateral, web site, the works. Down to mailing labels and email signatures; we’re talking the whole package here. And it has to be done now. Immediately. Like, yesterday. And for that extra bit of a challenge: they won’t actually let me design it. After 72 rounds of logo thumbnails, a direction was finally decided. The brochure was printed, along with a short run of business cards. Then the brochure was edited. And yes, this order of events is correct. We printed the brochure when version 8 was approved. Copy, layout, imagery, the works – it was all approved. Then, the email came in to the tune of “We have some edits to the brochures. And we have changes on the business cards.” Fine. It’s their project and their money, and in this world of on-demand printing it’s not uncommon to do a short run first. However, we are currently on version 16 of the brochure, and I just got...