Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Coolest Graphic I'll Never Use

In my past life, I was a bit of a graphic designer. And before you go and label me a Hindu, you need to understand that past life is simply a playful reference to my years as a woman living in Bangalore during the turn of the nineteenth century.

I kid.

In all seriousness, however, there was a time in my present life when I earned an honest man's wages designing graphics - and thus, I became a graphic designer. Actually, my titles were web designer and art director, which are both occupations in which graphic design is put to use.

Now that I'm a man of the cloth, however, I find that my dabbling in the graphic arts is a skill that is still put to good use... and I find immense enjoyment in that. But this post isn't about that... well, to be fair, this post is about that. More specifically, this post is about one of the many occupational hazards inherent to the role of graphic designer: hair loss associated with Sudden Rage Syndrome (SRS to those in the field). Allow me to illuminate you on this, if I may.

Graphic designers are, by nature of their trade, artists who revel in all that is creative. In fact, many of them are artists who simply want to not starve, and so they enter the world as graphic designers with dreams of using their creative prowess to dazzle consumers. What they find, however, is an industry that is ruled by the corporate man, wrought with "identity standards," and subject to finicky marketing directors who may or may not have a clue what real creative genius looks like.

I'm starting to digress. Let me cut to the chase.

It's fairly common for the graphically inclined to be commissioned with a project - say, a new logo, a magazine ad, or a graphic for an upcoming series at church (purely hypothetical) - and then to invest hours of artistic exertion and masterful designery on said hypothetical project, only to have it take a sudden and tragic new direction that leaves all your hard work for not.

Rage! Hair loss! Gnashing of teeth!

And so I present to you a graphic that was designed for our Christmas Eve service. So much work went into taking the tree from one photo, and adding it to prison cell (that's what that is... a prison cell). Hours were spent in Photoshop to make this look as real as possible. Shadows were simulated, lighting effects were rendered, heart and soul were poured out... only to be dashed to pieces in the final hours with a sudden change of direction. Good or bad, it was mine... and now, however fleeting it may be, it will have it's glory day in the hot sun.

I've said too much.

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