Adventures In Design

Part One:
Believe it or not but illustrator Vanessa Foley is a newcomer to the world of art and illustration. When Vanessa realized she had nothing to lose, she permitted herself to dive into her dream of being an artist. Hear how Vanessa found her confidence late in life to become a full-time illustrator and in the process earn 12 whole pounds. Leaving behind her day job she found the love of a lifetime illustrating day in and day out exploring her love and appreciation for birds through illustration. Learn how she found the courage to permit herself to be where exactly she wants to be in life and now ask you, can you say the same?

Part Two For Members Of The Circle Of Trust:
- How keeping an eye on interior design helps Vanessa create bird illustrations that speak to contemporary art collectors versus collectors of mobile home clutter.
- Nature provides Vanessa with a subject matter that has no expiration date and works that won't expire.
- We take an in-depth emotional dive and learn how a strict religious upbringing taught Vanessa to put her hopes and dreams on pause, but we also learn where the courage to try came to her.
- The pleasure that comes with allowing your parents to live through your success and lifestyle.
- Support from a spouse is a valuable resource for an adult wanting to switch their path in life and being able to one day do the same for the person you love most is a real blessing.

Direct download: AID663I.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Broadcasting live from a fishing boat in the mighty Missipppi river floating down the banks of Minneapolis, Minnesota we learn the love and passion that today's guest, a founding member of The VACVVM, Brandon Holt has for fishing, art, and tattooing. We follow along with early origins of Brandon Holt's illustration career and learn about his first paying job doing a commercial illustration for his mom and then quickly after discovering the quick paced grind of being a tattoo artist. When Brandon was looking to find someone that could make prints of his artwork, the printmaking world realized it quickly had just discovered a future talent that would create fans, collectors and memorable pieces of art. Sit back, pull out a Camel cigarette, pop open an Old Style and float downstream with the soon to be Johnny Appleseed of forest porn and the only artist we know that's surviving the apocalypse, Brandon Holt.

For members of the Circle of Trust.
- The escapism that Brandon enjoys from artwork and nature.
- Fundamental differences in boat culture vs. car culture and how these two vehicles make people act very differently.
- How fishing and being on the river influence the artwork and subject matters that Brandon takes on in his illustration work for The VACVVM.
- Composition theory by Brandon Holt, maybe the best 10 seconds of art talk in AID history.
- Difference and similarities in selling original artwork and tattoos.

Direct download: AID662I.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

On a perfect fall day, Adventures In Design hit record with an artist that celebrates the seasons, change, death, decay and life as they are one in the same and always using her work to remind us that all of these themes are not too far away from one another. Often we find our guests after the Wikipedia is stocked full of accomplishments, today we're grabbing our co-host on the way up and telling a story that has no ending at its humble beginning. As VACVVM Week continues on Adventures In Design, in chapter II we discover the youngest member, whos age has nothing to do with her amount of determination to become the absolute best are her trade. Join Illustrator Tegan White, Mark Brickey and Bug The Cat to have a conversation about Teagan's client work created under the studio name of Tiny Moth and her personal work that has recently taken the print and gallery worlds by storm as a breath of fresh autumn air in the contemporary art scene.

Talking Points
- The client work that Teagan does in the children's publishing industry under the studio name Tiny Moth.
- The development of Teagan's personal work and it's masterful focus on foilage, composition and a wind that blows through it all.
- Working without borders and the stress that comes along with capturing the illustrative spirit of a trash animal.
- Black doll eyes and working with the theme of death and decay in your work.
- Working with The VACVVM and Teagan's lifelong desire to be advanced, to be doing the work that should be out of her range and allowing yourself to believe that you can become the best at what you love to do.

To Hear The Full Episode Please Visit 

Direct download: AID661i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Part 1

We kick off a week of celebrating some of the most talented folks that we know in the world of illustration, painting, and printmaking with one of the newest citizens of Minneapolis Mike Sutfin. Mike moved his family and his career from Oakland a few years back to share studio space with other members of The VACVVM and to hopefully leverage this new opportunity into his ultimate goal as an artist to find more time for his self-initiated work. There was an adjustment period to going from working alone in a "vacuum" to working with The VACVVM. But now that he's settled in the new studio, Mike shares how their influence has him committing 23 minutes a day to do something that he hasn't done is a very long time, keeping a sketchbook and lets us know the significance of this daily ritual. Fans of Mike's work will be excited to hear the backstory of recently released series of small giclees and screenprints titled "Embers."

Part 2 - Circle of Trust Paid Member Bonus Content

  • The intimidation of the Corpse collab series where Mike finds himself illustrating in the same space as studio mates Aaron Horkey and Brandon Holt.
  • Mikes love of remarking finished prints and how the remarks have a different level of pleasure than making the original piece.
  • The VACVVM hasn't gone to Mike's head, in fact, it's made him realize how much farther he has to evolve to be the best version of himself.
  • How to discover your inner voice to figure out what themes you should be creating with your talents and the idea of seeing a hypnotist versus a psychiatrist to try and make this happen.
  • When it all starts to go right for you, there's a stress of what if it all starts to go wrong, the pressure that Mike feels to make this opportunity of resources from THE VACVVM work for his career growth.

Join the Circle of Trust today!

Direct download: AID660i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Prost! This month it's Oktoberfest on The Logo Show so Dan Stiles, Billy Baumann, and Mark Brickey all put on their lederhosen to look at logos found across the wide world of beer from the most obscure craft breweries to the macro brewers we've known since our dad's asked us to grab them a can. With the success of Miller Lite's retro rebrand, the boys focus in on the masterfully crafted marketing campaign that moved the needle so much for Miller that other brands followed suit shortly afterward. We've also lined up some classic old cans, some roundeles, some suggestions from Circle Of Trust Members, and everything in between to break down what is and isn't working. Dan, Billy, and Mark pool their experience of over sixty collective years in the design industry to break down how branding affects the viewer and what makes a logo stand apart from the rest. Tighten up your line weight, establish a visual hierarchy, and start gleaming the cube (or in this case can) harder than ever before and take your work to the next level as you listen to The Logo Show. Circle Of Trust Members stay tuned for the next installment of Billy On The Beat with Josh Emerich as they talk about his work in beer branding and more!

Direct download: AID659I.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

It's time to conquer your lurking fear of Apple N and start showing that mesh tool who is boss because The DKNG Show is here for its twelfth chapter. Dan Kuhlken and Nathan Goldman join us once again for another in-depth, behind the scenes, all access tour of their studio to break down how a top tier design duo produces hit after jaw dropping hit. With Adobe Max on the horizon and another well received Skillshare Class under their belts, Mark asks the boys about their how they determine what secrets they share, how well it's recieved by the design community, and why sharing Illustrator secrets has more potential than a traditional classroom environment. We also get to hear how DKNG reverse engineers their timeline on projects from tricking themselves to get started all the way to handing off the color separated files to the printer as we go over their rereleased Bob Moog Foundation posters. And if that isn't enough, in the Circle Of Trust Mark walks us through the St. Paul And The Broken Bones poster using their process video as a guide to break down each component of the piece as its made. Circle Of Trust Members also get an exclusive sneak peek at the latest print series to come out of DKNG Studios and how Dan and Nathan, once again, made this intricately woven work come across as effortless. Strap in and hold on because The DKNG Show is non stop, chicken nugget filled adventure into design that you won't find anywhere else.

Direct download: AID6588I.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

From the muddy banks of the Mississippi River to the oversized logos of the U.S. Bank Stadium comes a very special Minneapolis Shop Talk broadcasting out of CO exhibitions. Mark sits down to bang the drum with Mike Davis and Wes Winship from Burlesque Of North America, artist David Witt, and designer Ann Ryan. As each guest takes the stage we uncover their current struggles and successes from their own unique facet of a career in creativity. When is it all hands on deck over at Burlesque? How do you balance child care and comic strips? What is it like to design clothes for kids to wear all across America? Does anyone know what has actually happened on that couch? Learn to fight your own lions a little bit better with some of the chicken nuggets and life experience coming to you from the Twin Cities. Live antics ensue.

Talking Points

  • The three design types, marketing bull terriers, and not taking life too seriously. 
  • Mike and Wes start the Silk Road of screenprinting and design.
  • Becoming an Accidental Businessman with survival scams and more. 
  • All hands on deck at Burlesque. 
  • Working with Jacob Bannon and thriving under pressure. 
  • Living in a time when everything needs to look designed. 
  • Intense print jobs and following what’s in front of you. 
  • Bad business decisions, data, and shifting game plans. 
  • Childcare and comic strips
  • Working plans to pay the bills and looking at Patreon. 
  • The language and the work in comics. 
  • Hitting the right tone at the right time. 
  • Seeing the gap in your work and continuing to make what you love. 
  • Greener grass, great jobs, and some kind of dream. 
  • Was art school worth the student loans?
  • Dividing up design and the percentage of work that gets out the door. 
  • Jumping departments and learning to fight a lion.
  • Dream projects, safe spaces, and going tactile. 
  • New works, legacies, and spotting your work in the wild. 
Direct download: AID656i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

It is time for Dan Ibarra's exit interview. After co-founding Aesthetic Apparatus over fifteen years ago, Dan now primarily finds himself as an educator of the arts in various modalities and continues to design at his latest endeavor, Thriving Concern. This pivot was slow in coming but eventually meant the end of his involvement with Aesthetic Apparatus as more and more of his time was spent teaching and filling an emotional gap design alone couldn't fill. By pulling on that string Dan found a whole new side to how he would define "success" in his own creative career and what brought him fulfillment. The work he was doing at Aesthetic Apparatus centered around continually creating new ideas and Dan knew his strengths truly lay in developing long term strategic plans for the people he chose to work with. Instead of forcing that new design approach into how Aesthetic Apparatus operated, he broke away to create Thriving Concern. This "exit interview" is about nurturing growth and having the confidence to follow something new when you know it's time to step away from what used to define you.

Talking Points

  • The search for a career you love, the arrival of desktop publishing, and the entry point Aesthetic Apparatus opened.
  • Unfortunate truths about stardom in the design world.
  • Painful parts behind the scenes that we make look so easy and gauging industry loyalty.
  • Doing the best work you can by putting creative success at the top of the list.
  • Working through the highs and lows of the design drug.
  • Shifting from the cycle of creativity to long term strategic work and another financially fraught career choice.
  • Just dive in and saying so long to 700.
  • Is “success” the right word to define a creative career?
  • Helping other people with the time you have and choosing where you’ll make your money.
  • The start of Schoolhaus, building communities, and proving yourself through life experience.
  • Understanding ideas, creativity, and finding strange connections between disparate objects.
  • Other people’s creative process, the difficulty to verbalize it, and the liberty that comes from constraints.
  • New businesses and old partnerships. 
  • The trajectory of your life.
  • Post Aesthetic Apparatus plans, getting cock blocked by election results, and teaching design to non-designers. 
  • Five months to detach from fifteen years and its effect on your ego. 
  • Leading up to letting go. 
  • Different lives outside of design and starting from zero in education. 
  • Balancing the practitioner side of things and working with the clients you’ve built long term relationships with.
  • The “thing” about Thriving Concern and the flood of communication that’s missing. 
  • The skills that will never leave you from a career in Design. 
  • "Creative success" in conflict with the American Dream.
Direct download: AID655i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Mike Hammer, Mark Brickey and Gustavo Jaimes return with candy sacks of treats to ease your pain on the last Monday edition of Hammer Time. The boys review and critique what qualities create great limited edition treats and what qualifies for a quick holiday cash grab. Good laughs, great topics and a little consumer reporting is awaiting for you this morning when you dive into the 12th edition of Hammer Time.  In today’s Circle of Trust enjoy hearing live reviews as the guys do an on air taste testing and Hammer risks his life for your Halloween benefits. Download, turn up the headphones and throw away your sack lunch because your sweet tooth is getting ready to hit HIGH. Your last Monday with Violent Gentlemen crew is guaranteed to get you in a good mood and already feeling like it’s Friday again. 

Direct download: AID654i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 11:57pm PDT

It's that time of the week when we demand you break out the nearest drum and start banging while you devise plans to kill your boss because Shop Talk is officially here. Join Mark, Billy, and Pants as they get into a week's worth of emails, invoices, and deadlines spanning the gamut of the creative profession. Billy is in the middle of calendar crammed week filled with plenty of late nights as he works on a project for McDonald's while also preparing for the upcoming DDL art show, Duotone. Hear all about landing this dipping sauce-centric design job, how Delicious handled the exorbitant amount of work in such a short time, and some direct insight into being a creative director on a project of this magnitude. The boys get into the ups and downs of working a larger job like this and how it can bring to light some of the lesser known qualms of the creative profession like how our schedules affect our pursuits for love, the hard costs we potentially overlook, and knowing when to ignore your client. Antics ensue.

Talking Points

  • Billy lands a client meeting with McDonald’s after the latest Hammer Time.
  • It all started with an email about ten dipping sauces.
  • Putting the League in Delicious Design League and reverse engineering the big things that come in small packages.
  • Designing for the Golden Arches and breaking through the mental block of brand awareness.
  • The heaviness in art and revision checklists you’re morally opposed to.
  • Saying “yes” with purpose.
  • Rebranding, Duotone, and sticking to a schedule.
  • People you love, the creative profession, and guilt.

Circle Of Trust Talking Points

  • Conference adultery and the orbit of people you attract.
  • What dipping sauce fits OKpants the best?
  • Another drop at
  • Fall holidays looming on the horizon.
  • The pains of being the majority.
  • Ray Kroc’s famous Jamz endorsing spy. 
Direct download: AID653i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 1:35am PDT

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