Harlem Swing Posters / Full-Set

A final set of posters for The Harlem Swing Dance Society. THSDS is a non-profit organization promoting, propagating, preserving, and protecting Swing Dance and Lindy Hop culture in its Harlem home - back to its Harlem roots. In addition, this group seeks to connect Harlem youth to their cultural identity with this vibrant art form and one of the most dynamic and important art movements in history, the Harlem Renaissance. With the images, I sought to capture the individual dynamism, physicality, and elegance of single dance moves - individual dancers in a moment of personal expression and improvisation. As a secondary element to the set, grouping two posters together creates a variety of "dance partners" interacting and reacting to each other to create multiple expressions of this amazing art form. Our plan is to place large scale outdoor posters in and around Harlem in early 2016.

Andrew Young Lecture

Poster art for civil rights leader Andrew Young's lecture in Portland. In reading Young's memoir, An Easy Burden, I was drawn to the icon of the Bell for number of reasons. It represents a calling to, or a ringing in of a new way of thinking, living, and being. With freedom at the center of the civil rights movement, the Bell serves as an icon for this principle. In addition, it has a certain resonance with the season of Advent, ringing in a new king, a king that will lead us to a place of true freedom. The stars at the bottom of the icon hint at the star of Bethlehem, as well as the American flag. The flames at the top of the icon signify that the work of civil rights as essentially spiritual.

Glyph Posters

Poster series using abstracted glyphs & letter forms as a visual representation of spiritual language.

Client: Imago Dei

The Face of the Deep

14 icons for the upcoming book The Face of the Deep: Exploring the mysterious life of the Holy Spirit, by Paul J. Pastor. The chapters in the book and their corresponding icons are in two sets of seven - Seven Stars and Seven Lampstands (represented by the flame motif). The two pairs of sevens serve to organize and visualize the movement of the Spirit throughout the Bible. The Star and Lampstand symbols are from the book of Revelation.

Client: David C. Cook Publishers

The Face of the Deep / The Spirit Who Creates

I find ravens endlessly fascinating. This served as the perfect lead image for these icons. We chose a raven for the symbol of creation in keeping with many creation and bringing-of-light tales of the indigenous Northwest tribes. There are also a few obscure ancient Christian references to the Spirit at creation as a dark bird (before light was made). 

Tooling the Creators / The Spirit Who Inspires

The hand of the maker—a symbol loaded with possibilities. I left this image very simple, as a contrast to the rich spiritual ideas that swirl within it.

The Power of the Prophets / The Spirit Who Speaks the Truth

The star descends into the prophet’s mind, illuminating him and turning his head heavenward. Based on the content of this chapter, this was to be a “portrait” of King Saul and his decent into wickedness. I was sitting in church one Sunday morning drawing in my sketchbook and pondering this particular illustration that I was struggling with (worshipful multi-talking). I looked up at one point and scanned across the listening congregation and notice a young man sitting with his children. His profile offered the perfect mix of intense power and sadness so I did a quick sketch that became the basis for this image. 

The Voice of the Mountain / The Spirit Who Meets Us

One of my favorites in the set. I wrestled with this one, trying to capture the mountain as a place of sacred encounter – showing the ascent and descent, the light and dark, the star like a sunrise.

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From the Stump of Jesse / The Spirit of the Messiah

The frailty of the sprout under the star speaks to the frailty of the Messiah in Isaiah’s metaphor. A challenging prompt to say the least. My inclination would have been to create a very different “portrait” of Messiah, but this understated graphic seems to speak to the surprise of his life and ministry.

The Renewer of the Earth / The Spirit Who Sustains

I explored many different ideas for this one, searching for the right symbol. Once I got the running stag, it felt in rhythm with Paul’s content for this chapter.

Poured on All Flesh / The Spirit Who Does New Things

The form of a butterfly is so nuanced, I was hesitant to present it in such a simplified image. And then the challenge of containing the whole cosmos, end and beginning, the “new thing”, in a single icon…crazy. Ultimately the symbol of metamorphosis was right for this content, and hopefully will direct the reader deeper into the ideas of this chapter.

The Dove of the Beloved / The Sprit of Unconditional Love

Four symbols of the Spirit are at play here: dove, wind, fire, and light. The perfect set of raw materials for creating an icon.

The Wind of the Wilderness / The Spirit of the Desert

The perfect visual prompt that became the most difficult image to “find” in the series. After many unsuccessful tries, a good friend reminded me of what I do best, and this is the result: The lion, coming together (or coming apart) made of wind and fire, chasing us into the desert.  I still want to illustrate this chapter with multiple images – 

 

The Birth from Above / The Spirit of New Life

The man on fire preparing for birth. When Paul suggested this general visual idea, I saw it in my mind immediately. It was a month or more before I actually drew it, but it came together effortlessly, as if I’d drawn it a hundred times. A moment of perfect creative collaboration.

 

 

The Flame of Pure Speech / The Spirit Who Speaks through Us

The ziggurat, ancient Mesopotamian tower, is set on fire like a lamp. Babel turns into Pentecost.

The Oil of Holiness / The Spirit Who Sanctifies

The oil on the forehead is the traditional mark of Christian anointing since the beginning. The person, saturated with holy oil, is aflame, becoming the Spirit’s lamp, shedding his light. The moody, intense portrait, in some ways very different than the other icons, creates a face-to-face encounter with the reader at an important point in the visual narrative.

The Breath of One Body / The Spirit Who Unifies

Why a stunted tree for a chapter about breath? It’s the sprout, the body of Christ from chapter 5, all grown up. Grown up and sadly marred by disunity. The contours echo a system of veins, transits of oxygen. The sprout and tree icons echo one another, creating a more complete story when considered together.

Come / The Spirit Who Invites

Pure invitation. Fire and stars, sperm and egg, the globe, a drop of water, the whirlpool of the face of the deep turning to recreation by the Spirit. And it’s an exclamation point to conclude the series. Bam!

The Spirit Moves

Poster art for The Spirit Moves project in NYC

Client: The Maysles Documentary Center / Maysles Cinema

Art Director: Sophie Windsor Clive