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Lecture: Nicholas Muellner

 

[Note: Unfortunately, I was unable to attend Nicholas Mueliner’s recent lecture at Cornell University due to an information session held at the same time. In place of my usual lecture write-up, I will instead discuss the artist and his works based on my conducted research.]

Nicholas Muellner, a world-renown photographer and Associate Professor at Ithaca College, recently presented the body and theories of his latest works at Cornell University during a lecture entitled “Welcome to Club Scenario.”

A writer and artist, Muellner is known for his incredible writings that pair well with his visual books and photographic ventures. One of the sharpest examples of his incredible process is “Re-enactment (winter’s campaign)” (2003). Frigid, abstract winter scenes are photographed and paired with Muellner’s own internal feelings of loneliness and coldness.

Re-enactment (winter’s campaign)

As he states: “I  have recently spent a good deal of time in a somewhat distant and undeniably colder place.  This episode has corresponded with a pervasive feeling of ignorance – in my own life.”

What makes Muellner’s works particularly pleasing both aesthetically and in terms of being worthy of discussion is their transformative quality. Both his writings and his photographs do not merely portray a single subject which can be consumed and understood with a first reading. Instead, the full, collective body of his works – writings and photographs – must be taken into full consideration. The result is a truly dynamic experience that highlights vulnerabilities in the world, our human condition, and the works themselves.

I certainly wish I had had the opportunity to hear Muellner speak this past week as he works in mediums  I enjoy and with concepts I can relate well to without much effort.


Photo Credit:

First image: https://c2.staticflickr.com/8/7144/6708982219_340cab2301_z.jpg
Second image: http://nicholasmuellner.com/home/photographs/re-enactment-winters-campaign/

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[Lecture] James Casebere: Scales and Dimensions

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 11.17.56 AMThere is nothing worse than finding out that the artist whose work you are in complete awe of is also an extremely sincere and intelligent individual. Some people just have all the luck! As I waited and prayed to find something – anything! – wrong with James Casebere, as I listened to his lecture the realization slowly crept over me: there is no fault.

I love Casebere’s work. I will talk for hours and hours about his work to anyone who will listen – and I’ve learned quickly that few will after the fourth hour. The craziest part? I never even heard of his name before his exhibition at Cornell University.

“Scales and Dimensions” presents an incredibly satiating look into the mind of the brilliant artist. He forms intricately gorgeous miniature models in environments which showcase an equal amount of attention to the atmospheric light and surroundings. The final touch is his impeccable photography. The result is simply magic.

The surreal works Casebere produces are surreal – from his hallways scenes to those of suburbia, each image is more detailed and composed than the last.  The whimsical nature of his works are of key importance to their success and seeing the models on display only help one’s appreciation for how much work must go into each and every image.

I greatly enjoyed the lecture presented by James Casebere and continue to be amazed with how tactful and genuine such a talented artist is in person.


Photo credit: http://d71vxl4sfh0st.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Pg-13-Arts-Casebre-1.jpg

Bill of Plum Creek Designs

Bringing the Farmer’s Market Online

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One of Ithaca’s most loved traditions is the weekly farmer’s market which offers everything one could need from humble, handcrafted goods to delicious, farm fresh vegetables. Embracing this tradition yet helping to bring it into the digital age, Cornell University’s INFO 1300: Introduction to Web Design and Programming course has students work with one of the many market vendors to create a new or refreshed website for their company.

Working with three other students, we worked for William Baker, a Finger Lakes native who specializes in beautiful, handcrafted cutting boards.

In order to help build an online presence for Mr. Baker, we met and worked closely with him to realize his goals for his company, Plum Creek Designs. My role in the group was primary front-end implementation in addition to overall design and visual content generation. For this, I started by creating a design in line with the goals of Mr. Baker and by using the concepts we learned in this course and from course material, such as Steve Krug’s Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability.

Plum To further help strengthen his online presence, I then began to work on a revamped logo design for his company which, until this point, did not have either a logo or a website. Meanwhile, my diligent team worked tirelessly on the backend of the site, including the cutting board design customizer service which allows customers to customize the shape, design, and woods/colors of their board before ordering.

logo

Once I finalized the design of the logo in Adobe Illustrator, I tackled the next stage in visual content generation: photography. Capturing the charm of Mr. Baker, his booth, and his creations, I began to touch up photos to further enhance the overall look of the site, even going so far as to insert his products into royalty-free stock photos with the help of Adobe Photoshop.

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[The remainder of this post has been revised as of November 4, 2013 to reflect the site no longer being in use online.]

Upon completion of the site, we helped Mr. Baker set up his website so that he could quickly and easily communicate with his targeted customer base of locals and those who have been referred to his company by friends.

While the site is no longer live due to the expense of hosting, my team and I greatly enjoyed working with Mr. Baker and love visiting him at the Ithaca Farmer’s Market every chance we get!