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Fire, wikipedia

Originally written 3/29/2020 at the start of the pandemic

It has taken years to recognize that sometimes, my gut instincts are right. Or maybe it takes years to accumulate enough experience and knowledge to form this?

Either way, I’ve learned more times than not, if I would have listened to my initial gut response, it would have saved a few troubles, especially as it relates to running a design business. As we’ve had interactions with such a range of people, spotting red flags or the potential for a great partnership have only gotten easier with each new meeting. The way…


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The “rose of temperaments” (Temperamenten-Rose) compiled by Goethe and Schiller in 1798/9. The diagram matches twelve colors to human occupations or their character traits, grouped in the four temperaments: * choleric (red/orange/yellow): tyrants, heroes, adventurers * sanguine (yellow/green/cyan) hedonists, lovers, poets * phlegmatic (cyan/blue/violet): public speakers, historians * melancholic (violet/magenta/red): philosophers, pedants, rulers. Wikipedia

This is a part of a series I’ve decided to launch for myself in which I attempt to write *a minimum* of 1 paragraph (3–10 sentences) about something a day. It will not be perfectly curated or articulated, and there will certainly be punctuation problems. You’ve been warned.

2/11/21

Recently, there was a conversation on NPR about how purple has become the cautionary color of the pandemic. In the color scale that was discussed, Green = Fine, Yellow = Spread is Minimal, Orange = Moderate, Red = Substantial, Purple = Bad. I have also noticed purple appearing in relation to…


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Reputed descendants of Newton’s apple tree, wikipedia

Expertise ≠ New Ideas

This is a part of a series I’ve decided to launch for myself in which I attempt to write 1 paragraph (3–10 sentences) about something a day. It will not be perfectly curated or articulated, and there will certainly be punctuation problems. You’ve been warned.

2/9/21

While researching the Japanese idea of “Beginner’s Mind” shoshin, it was written than expertise doesn’t equal high intellect or new ideas. This struck me, as much of what I must do in my daily work as a designer is emphasize the value of my expertise and ideas to the public…


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Einstein’s thought experiment of 1930 as designed by Bohr, wikipedia

This is a part of a series I’ve decided to launch for myself in which I attempt to write 1 paragraph (3–10 sentences) about something a day. It will not be perfectly curated or articulated, and there will certainly be punctuation problems. You’ve been warned.

2/8/21

Bear with me as I try to put my limited understanding of quantum mechanics to paper. Also, keep in mind, I’m not sure if what I’m referring to falls under quantum mechanics or quantum physics, but the area of focus here is intended to be quantum entanglement.

So, if I’ve got this right: Einstein…


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Trigger mechanism 1923, wikipedia

This is a part of a series I’ve decided to launch for myself in which I attempt to write 1 paragraph (3–10 sentences) about something a day. It will not be perfectly curated or articulated, and there will certainly be punctuation problems. You’ve been warned.

2/5/21

Freud wrote that aggression is inherent to man’s disposition, though he wasn’t the first to theorize it. In fact, it seems to be a thread throughout not just philosophy or psychology, but also literature. Many question whether aggression is natural or learned as a part of a nurture process. But why should we first…


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The Thinker by Rodin (1840–1917), in the garden of the Musée Rodin, via Wikipedia

Design thinking is just thinking. What I mean by this is that when you really consider what we’re describing when we say “design thinking” is that we’re giving full consideration to something. To think is to give thought-make a judgment, opinion, or rational reasoning. The nature of what I’ve just written above is in itself an act of this. Now, this isn’t to say that design thinking isn’t a special skill, because it absolutely requires a certain personality and problem-solving ability to successfully utilize. …


When I was a teen, my grandmother introduced me to American Saddlebred horses and training. Through her, I took lessons for many years at a stable in a rural area outside of Houston — waking up early each weekend to head out for practice. Directed by a trainer, each session was for a half hour only and, depending on experience and skill, would be on a certain stable horse (unless you owned and boarded one there).

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American Saddlebred. (Photo via Horsenetwork.com, courtesy of the American Saddlebred Horse Association)

Over the years as I’ve taught aspiring graphic designers and managed a team at my own two studios, I’ve realized what an impact the…


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The Orange Show in Houston

I recently had the pleasure of attending a conversation on self-taught artists and community art at The Menil Collection in Houston. The discussion brought up creators of ‘visionary art’ around the city such as those of The Orange Show, Beer Can House, Art Cars, and The Flower Man. The room seemed to be filled with much nostalgia for where the city was going from roughly 70s to current time in this subculture of art. There was much to consider in looking back at the work of the non-artist artists and their earlier influence on the city.


by Jennifer Blanco

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A simulated-color image of Houston via USGS/Wikipedia

There are many topics of discussion on the future of the city of Houston in regard to urban planning, transportation woes, the state of the economy, and more recently, flooding issues. While these areas of inquiry are important to speculating on the city’s future, an additional area of concern should be that of culture and its ultimate impact on shaping Houston into a great city.

For a city to be a great city, a strong culture amongst other key factors must be in place. Urban planning research professor H.V. Savitch described the factors as the “4 C’s”[1]


by Jennifer Blanco

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Metropolis (Houston at Night) via Eflon

There’s a lot of talk these days about Houston being the next Great American city. With editorial reporting from the likes of Forbes, New York Times, Smithsonian Magazine and more, you’ll read collected data about diversity in cuisine, ethnicities, economic opportunity, along with a relatively cheap cost of living. But what each of these reports fail to capture is the culture of the city, and what it takes to be a Great city.

Since Houston is relatively new, neither its past nor its present are well documented and most who have grown up here — let alone…

Jennifer Blanco

Founder & Creative Director of Field of Study / Co-founder of @workhorseprints

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