Bijan Berahimi

Crime & Punishment and Design Critiques

I’m in the graphic design program at CalArts and I have been spending all of my time in my studio on projects for the last three weeks. Until this past week, that’s all I was… just someone who was in the graphic design program working on projects. Things are different now. So what has happened since my third week? The design department put on it’s first show of the year titled Crime & Punishment on campus, all year levels have been preparing for it since summer. Most of our teacher assistants are either masters students or BFA4s (year level four students) so in one of my design classes, they asked if we were interested in helping them setup the show. Being eager BFA1s we jumped on the opportunity and about half of our class showed up to the gallery space to help.

It was quite a uniting experience, not only for our class but for the entire program and that’s why after this weekend I feel closer to being apart of the program. Before I was just someone who was doing work for their class, I knew there were many more aspects to this program and now I feel like I have experienced a few more. My classmates and I helped setup a design show, and being there to see it all in action was a very fulfilling experience. I met a few of the masters students and was able to chat with my peers about their work work. This is the significant design community I was looking for, and on Thursday that is definitely what I saw.

In Graphic Design I we just finished Step III of our visual contrast project where we created abstract asymmetrical compositions using found objects (2D&3D). We used a photocopier to create different compositions with our archives, the end result is what you see above. It was quite a sensational experience seeing these objects that to most would be considered trash (I got plenty of weird looks in the library as I had a pile of my “archives” next to the photocopier), be transformed into pieces of art. In Macintosh for Designers our project for the entire semester is to create a motion piece around a contrast in Los Angeles. I am contrasting commercial Los Angeles and non-commercial Los Angeles, the visuals I’m using are shopping centers (commercial) and nature centers/parks (non-commercial). It’s actually quite sad, you see huge crowds in places like Hollywood and Highland but you see very few people (most of the time none) in nature centers and parks. We’ll be using Adobe After Effects to create the motion piece, an application I don’t have much experience with it but let me tell you, I’m excited to use it after seeing what is possible with the application.

Anyways, now onto some things that aren’t related to design… if you read my blog then you know I’ve been waiting for Where the Wild Things Are to come out forever. It’s finally that time, it comes out this Friday and I’ve been listening to the soundtrack (by Karen O and the Kids) on repeat for the last week preparing. Also I’ll be going to the UCLA game vs CAL this Saturday, they are always fun even though I’m not the biggest fan of college football.