Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Investment Inventiveness

The Wall Street Journal has taught me much about investing. I have great teachers in art directors Orlie Kraus, Sheryl Dermawan, and Jia Baek, who give me enlightening assignments about various funds. This story is about a conflict among companies who offer ETF's (Exchange Traded Funds). Certain funds under this umbrella are leveraged, causing greater volatility. Some companies, namely BlackRock,  feel these leveraged funds should be reclassified as ETI's (Exchange Traded Instruments). Hence, the 'F' in my drawing is being sawed down to  look like an 'I'.

In order to to interpret investment concepts clearly, it's important to doodle lots of ideas on paper. You literally need to think through your hands. Here are some sketches for this story:

Once I was able to see this 'saw' concept on paper, I was betting the editors would go with it.

Here I wanted to create conflict between pencil and eraser.

Here the idea of reclassifying certain 'investment vehicles' creates a confusing traffic pile-up.

Fund managers literally battle over the F in ETF.

A tug-of-war over a letter in an Acronym.

"The F goes!" "No, the F stays!"

This post inspired me to compile some drawings I've created for Orlie, Sheryl, and Jia  over the years. I hope you find some value in these investment-related illustrations:

This story was about the reaping the fruits of dividend funds.

This spot accompanied a year-end quiz about mutual funds.

This image attempted to illustrate the flow of closed-end funds.
This investor is getting a lesson in municipal funds.

When it comes to investing, losses can sometimes lead to savings.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Bambi...or Beezlebub?

This drawing for About Town accompanied an article about the polarizing nature of deer; animals adored for their Bambi-like appearance, and despised for the diseases they spread (as well as gardens they destroy). It must be hunting season, because I just heard gunshots as I posted this!

Having been afflicted with Lyme Disease, I could certainly connect with this story. Here are a few subtle ideas I submitted to the editor:


Is this creature a friend, a foe, or just a doe?

Monday, November 21, 2011

James Fergason, Inventor of LCD technology

James Fergason (1934 - 2008) invented the improved Liquid Crystal Display, or LCD. His contributions to technology resonate strongly, especially when I think of my first calculator or digital watch. IT company Softmart asked me to create a portrait of him for a calendar celebrating great innovators of computer technology. Art Directors Ray Gedeon and Dan Zuena were fabulous to collaborate with. Even though the new year is still a month away, their beautifully designed calendar  sits prominently on my desk!

 Below are some of portrait ideas. It was fun to integrate this inventor's likeness with various elements of LCD technology.

The art directors liked this dry-brush approach, but asked me to replace a recent reference
to Mr. Fergason with a younger reference.

This idea presents James Fergason from behind technological curtains.
Here I played with the idea of putting the inventor's name in LCD lights.
I was commissioned for this project based on portraits of in my portfolio of a some other innovative historical figures:

Thank you James Fergason , for your important contributions to modern technology!

You can view my new illustration website here!