We had a great time interviewing Alex Yaeger, a graphic designer and illustrator who focuses on creating original and intriguing concepts to best serve his clients.
How long have you been in design?
In some ways, since I was a child. My parents were both landscape architects by degree and I was always surrounded by an abundance of drafting tools. I always enjoyed fictional settings in illustrated books and video games that fleshed out their worlds with logos, maps, and schematics. I would often emulate those sorts of creations in my spare time and especially during less-appealing classes in school. At one point, I even designed a logo for a photography studio my mother temporarily worked at. Despite this, I didn’t realize that I wanted to make a career out of my creativity until I was in my second year of college. Having been somewhat aimless and uncertain about my future before, entering the graphic design program really opened my eyes and realized that this was what I was meant to do. Before I left school, I was already tackling freelance and contracted work.
Do your personal projects differ from your professional work? If yes, how so?
I tend to think about each project very passionately. Working professionally, this has caused some deal of anxiety as, in the end: a designer does have to defer final say to a client or director. I have gradually learned to accept this and persevere in fulfilling the duties required of me. I think this is an internal struggle all creatives face when making a living based on their talents, sometimes we care too much for our own good. Personal projects and creative exercises are a good way to prevent burn out and, in the end, tend to appeal to and bring in potential clients the most.
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It feels like just yesterday that the Behance team debuted Portfolio Review Week in May 2012, so we can hardly believe that the 5th PRW is coming up this Spring.
Twice annually, Behance presents Portfolio Review Week, an unprecedented series of volunteer-organized events that has spread to hundreds of cities internationally, with a goal of bringing together creative professionals.
Our team has been hard at work preparing behind-the-scenes. Some changes this time around:
- A brand new home for PRW!
- Launch of speakers at all PRW events
- New materials for our hosts in their kits, including Photobooth props, a more comprehensive Handbook, and more
- Branding improvements from our design team
We can’t wait to launch PRW5 later this week! Stay tuned for news….
Sneak peek at the new Behance Reviews site!
Getting inspired by custom posters designed by past hosts
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This week we’re featuring a great story from one of our most viewed contributors, Kim Høltermand.
Any of our Behance users who have opened up Prosite for the first time may already be familiar with his sample homepage, but when he decided to join Behance way back in 2007, Kim Høltermand didn’t know what to expect. He comes from a creative family–his father an artist, his grandfather an architect– but Mr. Høltermand only picked up photography recently as a side project from his rather unusual career as a fingerprints expert in the Crime Scene Unit of The Danish National Police.
“Joining Behance changed my life.”
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In this series, we’ll look deeper into some of the projects on Behance.net that were especially admired in our community. Andreas Englund is a Stockholm, Sweden- based artist and art director. “Life of A Superhero” is his first project on Behance.
What was your inspiration for this project?
My visual inspiration originates from my fascination of the human body and Greek sculpture. Conceptually, I get inspired when I’m forced to see things from a new perspective. For me, Greek sculpture is like the main image of the classic Superhero – but without the costume. In general, these superheroes are stereotypes; they are perfect people. In this case wanted to question that stereotype. From there, it wasn’t a huge leap to put a costume on on this old Greek sculpture and then put him in alternative, human situations.
Can you describe your process in creating this project?
My first motif was “Strawberryjam”– the superhero trying to open a jar of strawberry jam. At first I wanted to paint a new version of the old greek sculpture ”The Discus Thrower”. I wanted to put him in a new context and call him “The Can Opener.” In that process I came up with the idea to put a superhero costume on him– and then the Superhero was born.
The next step actually came one year later when he (the Superhero) was supposed to be beaten up by an older dude in the painting ”Fight”. I had a problem with that motif because it was the older guy who became interesting and I had no story for him. In that process I found out that he could be the older version of the same superhero – still kicking ass. After that painting I had it all figured out, and could continue with this concept of portraying the whole life of a Superhero, uncensored and exposed.
Did you expect it to be as popular as it’s been on The Behance Network?
I received a lot of positive feedback during this project and I knew a lot of people appreciated this series but I could never imagine it to be this popular. It’s truly a fantastic feeling. I have to thank everybody who has taken time to comment on my project. It means a lot.
“I tried to come up with situations that weren’t obvious and that were not over played. When something is humorous, you want to tone it down rather than enhance it. Otherwise it loses it’s drama and becomes obvious and uninteresting. People are intelligent, and want to be treated that way.”
Did you go through many versions and iterations before coming up with these final pieces?
I guess the number of versions are limitless, and I had a lot of ideas that never made it to the canvas. I tried to come up with situations that weren’t obvious and that were not over played. When something is humorous, you want to tone it down rather than enhance it. Otherwise it loses it’s drama and becomes obvious and uninteresting. People are intelligent, and want to be treated that way.
Do you feel that this project is “done,” or is there anything you’d like to improve on or change in the future?
The Superhero concept helped me to build my foundation as an artist and now I have lot of other ideas and concepts that I want to explore.
That said, I still have a lot of ideas that I haven’t had time to finish yet about the Superhero… so there will be more stories to tell about this character in the future.
Did anything interesting happen as a result of the success of this project? (fans contacting you, job opportunities, blogs picking it up, etc).
Yes it did! All of the above actually. Since I do have some of my work in Los Angeles, I hope this could lead to new contacts in the US who want’s to exhibit my work. We will see what happens. Either way I’m very satisfied with how things have turned out!
While it’s not recognized as an official sport (…yet), Creatives on Behance have been busy showing off their best work to commemorate the 2014 Winter Games. Below are snippets from our favorite projects that showcase work from all sorts of places–ad work, editorials, apps, and even industrial design. Click on a photo to take you to the full project!
SOCHI 2014 Winter games sport illustration for NYT by Francesca D’Ottavi
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Appreciations are a way to send genuine kudos to another creative professional on Behance. This is our community’s way of curating the network, so that the best projects gain the most exposure. Here’s a look at two of the most appreciated projects on Behance this month:
While traveling along the coast of Portugal, Photographer Alessandro Puccinelli documents his journey with a series of photos shot before going to sleep each night. Best enjoyed as a set, take a look at the full project here.
The folks from Webinspeer, a new responsive site that serves up daily inspiration, content & news, share the design behind their site on Behance. A great way to announce a launch, check out their first project here.
In this series, we’ll look deeper into some of the projects on Behance.net that were especially admired in our community. Javier Perez is an Ecuador- based graphic designer and audivisual producer. His other projects include experimental animations, clever stop-motion ads and playful projects using Vine. We spoke with him about his recent projects Instagram Experiments, part I and II.
What was your inspiration for this project?
The simplicity within common every day items. These objects are beautiful by themselves and my work is to add a visual meaning to them. Every day I discover different meanings.
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Today, we’re thrilled to introduce you to a fully redesigned portfolio and profile experience on Behance. Our goal with these improvements is to bring your work front-and-center, and make it even easier for anyone to discover what you do, no matter what device they’re browsing on. We’ve also made powerful improvements to the experience of editing your portfolio and profile, all changes that’ll bring your work more into focus.
Some of what you’ll notice:
- Fully Responsive Profile: Your work looks great across phone and tablets
- Simple Editing Tools: The way you edit and organize your work is easier than ever
- Your Behance Presence, In One Spot: Your Profile now encompasses much more about you – from the collections you curate to the projects you appreciate
- Focus on your work: The design changes bring your work more into focus. Notice a cleaner, more minimal profile that helps your work stand out
- Consistency across platforms: Now, your Profile is consistent and professional across devices
- No More Color Customization: We have simplified the profile view on the web to match what has already been very successful on the Behances iOS apps by replacing color customization with a more neutral set of tones that better showcase the portfolio work itself.
A few months ago, The Made Shop, a design shop based out of Denver, Colorado, was approached by Adobe to remix their famous red A logo.
“When Adobe asked us to re-imagine their logo, we were super excited. The Made Shop works primarily in graphic design, but our background comes from architecture and object design, and we enjoy blurring the distinctions between those fields and getting our hands dirty making physical objects for graphic projects whenever we can. Among the many tools we love and rely on in our shop on a daily basis — pencils, Photoshop CC, power tools, Illustrator CC, sketchbooks, After Effects CC, exacto knifes, InDesign CC, erasers — a good many of them have that Adobe logo on them — so we couldn’t wait to get our hands on it.”
Instead of making one logo, they made a simple container and, over the next week, filled it with the materials that make the creative process unique and wonderful. Things like pencil shavings, hot coffee, and smoke bombs called the logo container home. Check out their amazing logo remix here.