Form upon platform, platform upon form

Of the many variables at play in a piece of graphic design, one has become especially pertinent as a site of contention and relevance in the work: its medium.

Each medium contains a particular set of embedded limitations and affordances — «a finite budget of opportunitites» (Malcolm McCullough)

Franceso Casetti defines a medium as a «site of experience»

«I favor design decisions that display, exaggerate, augment, or betray these two extremities in order to highlight the inherent qualities of the medium in how the work is encountered.» – Eric Hu

Experimental Jetset intentions: Offset the phenomenon of graphic design falling into a mode of representation where the inherent nature of the work is to immediately direct the viewer to engage with the content. In their minds, a poster needed to create a constant awareness of its aesthetic dimensions to its viewers—that what they’re encountering is, in fact, a poster and not an image.

Joost Grootens; using a palette instead of CMYK to make the reader aware that he is holding a printed reproduction

There seems to be a persistent idea of acknowledging the affordances and limitations in printed graphic design, which leaves the desire for for parallel comparisons in other media, especially in an age where the presence of the Internet has been described by many, most notably Gene McHugh, as becoming “less a novelty and more a banality,” in the context of art and design.

Graphic design that refers to its own material context

Engaging the visual components available in graphic design

Euphemisms or metaphors when talking about computers favor accessibility over transparency, but ultimately serve to hinder users from understanding their relationships to these worlds / the medium


In the past forty years, we have been introduced to digital surfaces and we’ve seen how easily these surfaces can dissolve seamlessly into the background and how design can become dematerialized into a constant, overwhelming, vaporous stream of information.

Revealing a level of materiality on which work existing on screen is displayed; «a confrontation of the platform by acknowledging its presence in the final transmission of work calls attention to its inherent behaviors. When a platform behaves in a way it wasn’t known for behaving, the user becomes aware of it’s presence and through this awareness and engagement, the moment becomes a physical moment


Websites and video as physical entities; «the act of making that occurs at the level of code embodies similar qualities that a traditional craftsman may encounter»; «it’s been a persistent interest of mine that the qualities of craft are felt even in computational contexts»

«I’ve explored ways in which confronting or questioning the limitations and affordances of platforms can have an effect on the transmission, reception and the shaping of content»

iPad app that requires you to move to watch a video

Reply-website taking advantage of the medium to create a unique experience; evoking a physical quality of craft

Processing drawing application used for «Thousand Characters» project; to learn programming and Chinese; showing deviations within a system, and thus exhibiting a level of texture despite their existence on a flat surface

Consequences, not errors; the «thousand characters» project is not a fetishization of the glitch

«these effects are merely consequences of the affordances and limitations of the medium themselves»

«This transparency leads to a more engaging experience, and one in which the application isn’t just seen as a form of witchcraft.»

Exploring the notion of jumping back and forth between human and machine legibility

Rebecca Ross: Hands in the Machine

Intertwines thinking about traditions of the handmade, the freedom of engaging with technologies at the level of code, and an aspiration toward a policy of transparency and active engagement

Subjectivity in projects with forms that have no other function outside of the aesthetic realm

Generousity and openness

Visually articulate your ideas!

An accurate reflection of your methodology

«Beautiful seams» (Mark Weiser)

The original context of this phrase stemmed from his observations in discussions about ubiquitous computing and the goal of achieving a quality of seamlessness, which he felt was misguided and results in a landscape where “everything is the same.” Weiser proposes instead, “to offer users ways to reach into and configure the systems they encountered; ideally, such seams would afford moments of pleasure, revelation and beauty.”

This is an argument for scars, seams, and evidence of a framework to show through in stylistic and functional ways

Legible and evident interactions in interface design, a social network based on geolocation

the relationship between a work of design and the surface in which it is presented

questions of context, processes and situations in which the order of operations and the hierarchies in how design operates in relationship to its medium

engender moments of transparency in process while also explicitly exerting my own artistic subjectivity

«In the past few decades, the proliferation of available platforms in which to create and present graphic design has brought with it new sets of affordances and potentials. Archetypes and preconceived notions of the inherent qualities of these environments can lead to content and form reaching a less penetrable invisibility to its origins.


I seek out the physical in digital processes and media and in searching for evidence of the digital in physical formats. In doing so, I find my work existing in an expanded ecosystem of tools, aesthetics, and processes where form can emerge as a result of the economy of potentials and limitations of its surface. And as a result, the nature of a platform can be revealed augmented and perhaps even subverted through the creation of form.»