Alison Garwood Jones

Flesh tones

Originally published in November 2016 in Blog

The only thing I remember about colour mixing from grade school is: red + blue = purple. I’m guessing you also discovered that the result was an ugly, muddy maroon, not the Tyrian purple worn by Roman emperors. For that, according to Aristotle, I’d have to source some crushed shellfish. I only had a Prang […]

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We work for society

Originally published in October 2016 in Blog

“We work for society.” This is how my dad, Trevor Garwood-Jones (1928-2011), described an architect’s responsibilities to the communities they build in. Buildings house our existing emotions, but also create new ones — some drab, some inspired depending on the quality of the design. Beauty was key, in Trevor’s mind, to building empathy and a sense […]

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Colour variations

Originally published in September 2016 in Blog

I obsess over colour. I stare until I’m forced to blink. Then I stare some more. Do you see the atomic lift off in the yellow? Pure magic.    

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Accessible Design in Canada

Originally published in August 2016 in Blog

FIFTY YEARS AGO, graphic design meant two things: working in print and kicking out mind-blowing creative. Wait, make that three: insisting on your own vision. The brash antics of Madison Avenue’s “Big Idea” branding campaigns, personified by George Lois and his “my way or the highway” client dynamic, have long since been replaced by a […]

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In Conversation with Anita Kunz

Originally published in May 2016 in Blog

hen Anita Kunz was a five-year old growing up in Kitchener, Ontario in the early 1960s, she practiced drawing the usual kid stuff: horses, flowers, fluffy clouds. But making Crayola masterpieces for the fridge wasn’t enough. Anita drew with a stronger sense of purpose learned from her uncle, the artist and environmentalist Robert Kunz. His editorial illustrations […]

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Skillshare vs. Netflix

Originally published in April 2016 in Blog

My favorite kind of homework. Hardest letters: S, Y. #brushpenlettering #brushguide (h/t to our teacher, Miami-based art director, Andrea Campos) It’s no contest. Given the choice between, say, Scarface and a tutorial on brush pen lettering (above) or a primer on watercolour techniques, I’m going with the loaded brush. I think Skillshare is one of the biggest gifts […]

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Going Green

Originally published in December 2015 in Blog

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Typeset truths

Originally published in October 2015 in Blog

For my friends at Lean In Canada.

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Performance Art

Originally published in July 2015 in Blog, Chalkboard Art, Doodling, Graphic Recording, Graphic Visualizer, Illustration, Visual Notetaking, Visual Storytelling

I’ve been doing chalkboard art on the windows at The Merchant Tavern for two weeks now, armed with my ruler, Sharpie paint markers, Q-tips and a bottle of nail polish remover. One hundred thousand commuters flood Toronto’s Financial District on weekdays, and during the morning rush hour about ten thousand of them walk past the spot where […]

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Switching gears

Originally published in July 2015 in Blog

I like drawing because it uses a different patch of my brain than writing and makes me tackle math and spatial questions. For me, drawing is an act of joy — not some predatory career move — although I joked with friends on Facebook this week that monetizing the hell out of ALL my skills […]

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