Published: November 2016

 

The funk is real.

November was gruesome. The angst and hate of the election season. Print jobs that went sideways. A washing machine that stopped working and had to be replaced. A much-loved mentor died. The end of the semester loomed. Complicated holiday schedules. Personal issues and professional issues that swirled together in a maelstrom of chaos. I was in a funk. And the funk spilled over into the blog.

I didn’t feel like writing.

A couple of months ago, I started a couple of “weekly” series. The idea was that it would be easy to keep on schedule if I had these structured posts. About midway through the month, I ditched “On Typekit” because it just wasn’t working. I’ve enjoyed the Designer Toolkit posts, but I’m starting to think it’s not something I want to do as a weekly series.

I was reasonably productive, even if I wasn’t writing. I designed a logo for a new podcast and the redesigned my Sketchbook B and In Store Columbia logos to match the style. I started to post older posts to Medium. I got back on Dribbble. I’ve been working on the award design for this years’ InShow cube. And I’ve been experimenting with some prototype podcasts and even some animation for a possible video project.

But I haven’t felt like writing. And to be honest, I still don’t feel like writing.

I was really happy with four posts this month: Martin Luther, Content Strategist*, Twitterless, Formatting a really long web address and Remembering Judy Davis. And I want to focus on more posts like those. So that’s the plan for December… focus on the longer stuff and don’t worry about how many posts I finish and post. I plan to keep In Store Columbia and Forgotten Slides rolling along.

Finally, it's the Advent season. Which means it's time for my annual Advent Resolution: To prayerful consider the coming year. Using the beginning of the church year to prepare for the beginning of the calendar year. I don't know if I'll post much about my reflections like I did last year, but that might be what I need to break out of the funk.

-B


* Technically, Martin Luther, Content Strategist was posted in October. But since I posted it after October's summary, I'm including it here.


 

Older Posts that I still like

 
 

On Instagram

Draplin.

A photo posted by Bob Wertz (@sketchbookb) on


Bob Wertz writes about design, technology and pop culture at Sketchbook B. Bob is a Columbia, South Carolina-based designer, creative director, college instructor, husband and dad. He’s particularly obsessed with typography, the creative process and the tools we use to create. In his spare time, he struggles to be productive. Follow Bob on Twitter and Instagram.

Remembering Judy Davis

Columbia loses a great philanthropist, executive and role model

 

I’ve worked with lots of senior executives through the years, but without any doubt, the most amazing executive I’ve ever worked with was Judy Davis.

She passed away on Thursday.

Corporate communications at BlueCross was under Judy for most of my eight-year tenure. People often asked why our team reported to the chief legal counsel, but we didn’t mind. Judy was awesome to work for.

My most fond memory of Judy was when she approached me to help with a presentation for Enginuity SC Ignite, a Pecha Kucha style event here in Columbia. She was a masterful presenter*, but I had no idea what to expect. Most executive Powerpoints are dreadfully boring, and I wasn’t sure what she wanted.

She came to my office and we discussed pacing and style. She wanted all images and no words. She scripted a clean, easy to understand presentation. She wanted to take a complex business model and make it easy for anyone to understand. And I built exactly what she asked for. 

I couldn’t make it to the presentation, but everyone told me she hit a home run. She later thanked me for building her presentation, but the truth was that I learned more from her about presenting than I contributed to the project.

I’ve told many people that Judy Davis was my executive role model. She was intelligent, savvy, thoughtful, supportive and kind. Judy influenced the way I think about business, management and the role of design in a large organization.

She’ll be missed.

UPDATE: Cathy Monetti over at Riggs Partners wrote an amazing post that summarizes everything I wish I had written. Go read it now...


* She was a lawyer, after all.


Bob Wertz writes about design, technology and pop culture at Sketchbook B. Bob is a Columbia, South Carolina-based designer, creative director, college instructor, husband and dad. He’s particularly obsessed with typography, the creative process and the tools we use to create. Follow Bob on Twitter and Instagram.

What I love about Draplin...

This man loves to create.

I saw Aaron Draplin for the fourth time on Thursday night when he came to the Half and Half in Columbia. Over the last years 15 years or so, between CCAS, AIGA South Carolina and Converge SE, we’ve had a bunch of awesome designers come through Columbia… DJ Stout, David Carson, Chip Kidd, James Victore, Seymour Chwast, Michael Beirut, Sean Adams, Sagmeister… and that’s a really incomplete, partial list. 

But Draplin is one of my favorites. 

What I love about Draplin is how much he loves to make things. Other designers are passionate about solving business problems. Or challenging convention. Or tackling large international clients. But Draplin loves to create things. Sure, he solves problems for clients, he challenges conventional thinking, he has some large international clients. But the thing that really seems to drive Draplin is putting things out into the world, which I really do feel makes him unique among the big names in design.

(It's also the reason why Draplin's work is known beyond the design world. Field Notes is loved by people all over the world and they love Draplin, too.)

If he comes to a town near you, see him. You won't be disappointed.


Bob Wertz writes about design, technology and pop culture at Sketchbook B. Bob is a Columbia, South Carolina-based designer, creative director, college instructor, husband and dad. He’s particularly obsessed with typography, the creative process and the tools we use to create. In his spare time, he attends lectures. (Because he is so much fun.) Follow Bob on Twitter and Instagram.