Preparing my art show

I’m working on my upcoming art show (Sept 4, 2014 at the Manning Centre in Calgary).

It’s been a challenge to conceptualize something that can be called “art” as opposed to mere design.

I was inspired by an exhibition in Charleston, SC featuring an artist-designer: Shepard Fairey (of Obama hope poster fame). He does a great job using icons and decorative art elements to get his ideas across:


I don’t share Fairey’s politics, however.

A book on Art Deco in the gallery library got me thinking: what if rather than criticizing our Oil Age, art celebrated it – like it does for electrification in the bas-relief below?


“Minimalistic Callouts Heighten Visual Appeal”

Call-outs are a good principle of visual design. This article shows how minimalism works better. I love that people take the time to look into this.

In short:





Full article



Spread of Religion Visualized



The governor of the Bank of England likes my infographic


“Mark Carney, widely regarded as the “steady hand” that helped keep Canada’s fiscal position strong throughout global economic slowdowns and crises, says he will proudly display the infographic in his new office at the Bank of England.”

Read more

The infographic can viewed here.

Designing an invite to my own wedding

It’s not every day you get to design your own wedding invite. My best “man” – the wonderful and design-conscious Falice Chin – referred to it in her speech at the reception (I paraphrase):

“I knew that Olivier was a changed man after meeting Sarah (the bride), because there were birds on his wedding invitation and it didn’t include Helvetica – he even went so far as to use a serif font!”


Other than pleasing my fiancé, I also wanted to refer to the upcoming arrival of our child. However, we had to send the invites during the first trimester, before we wanted to announce. Therefore, I created a second version to send post-announcement.


One of my earliest creative memories

ImageHere I am around age 10, entering the Canada Day poster contest. Without being too hard on my younger self, I can’t help but wince at my banal concept: a row of Canadian archetypes (see the coloured lumber jack, as well as an astronaut — Marc Garneau was a big deal — and I’m sure there was an Inuit guy too) with a giant maple leaf backdrop. It may have presaged my love of Soviet poster art:



CPP/QPP Increase: All Signs Point to Trouble

Another project I did for the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB). I had to experiment to get the right look for the moving highway – opting for a simple green field over a row of trees. Also notice the slight texture on the signs and the whooshing sound effects.