Recently, I had the distinct opportunity of working with the Sudbury Valley School once again, this time on their new book A Place to Grow, a collection of essays and observations by Daniel Greenberg, co-founder of the school and major proponent of the Sudbury Model of education. I’m especially intrigued by the double meaning of the title as a PLACE to grow (physically, as a school building) and a place to GROW (individually, as a person) because both of these modes of growth are required to establish and maintain a Sudbury School.
Recently, Matt Griffin wrote a brilliant article at A List Apart about the eternal disparity facing designers, specifically the difference between using the traditional boring time-tested solution to a problem, or going outside the box to create something a bit more exciting that may not communicate as well. Matt described it as “the mismatch between impulses (bring order!) and outcomes (show us surprises!).”
Several months ago, I took a class called Design: Creation of Artifacts in Society. The course was taught by Karl Ulrich from the University of Pennsylvania and was offered at no cost by the massive open online course (MOOC) provider, Coursera.
Enough of the techno babble, it’s time for some inspiration! In a style he called minimal realism, Charley Harper captured the essence of his subjects with the fewest possible visual elements. His drawings were influenced by Cubism, Minimalism, physics and countless other developments in art and science. His organization of forms fit together like a circuit board or jigsaw puzzle. The whimsical arrangements emulate a balanced relationship as it can appear in the simplicity of nature.
Having spent a considerable segment of my career convincing people to buy things they don’t necessarily need, I hesitate to recommend or endorse products unless they are obviously outstanding and able to provide a better quality of life. Today I need to promote a service that can help people in all walks of life to live more effectively and with considerable improvement to their safety, education and appreciation of all things.