May 30, 2012

Graduate Thesis: prototype colLABorative


The graduate thesis process at The University of The Arts involves intensive study and research in a topic pertaining to museum exhibition. The results of this research are then used to inform a practical application to benefit the museum field.


This thesis focuses on a possible implementation of a cross-disciplinary design space where professionals and the public collaborate to create and prototype concepts for future museum exhibitions. Collaboration and the use of open-source information have become every day activities due to new technologies and the interest in forming creative communities. Thesis research was collected by studying specific examples of collaboration and prototyping in many settings, ranging from museums to companies to websites. The research showed how productive and valuable these concepts can be in these various settings. A plan for the prototype collaborative, a lab that aims to provide a platform for exchanging of ideas and fostering dialogue between professionals and the public, was created to answer the need for this type of space in the museum field.


In the spirit of open source, this thesis document has been made available under a creative commons license. Please feel free to  download a full copy pdf. A print version is also available from



May 11, 2012

“Our Champs: Triumph and Tragedy in Philadelphia’s Boxing Heritage”

In this full semester individual project, students were tasked with developing an exhibition about some aspect of Philadelphia heritage or culture. We were give a specific exhibition space with logistical challenges as well as opportunities. The project spans schematic design, design development and the creation of construction documents.

For my exhibition, “Our Champs: Triumph and Tragedy in Philadelphia’s Boxing Heritage” focused on the history of boxing in Philadelphia. Through the stories of four of Philadelphia’s best known boxers, visitors will discover how their greatest triumphs and defeats both in and out of the ring offer a window into the personality of Philadelphia.

The Photograph in this rendering is used courtesy of Andy Grey. Andy’s photograph of Joe Frazier touched me and shows Smokin’ Joe’s toughness. The boxing portraits project can be viewed here:

And a rundown of his photographs being used in the press (including my project) can be seen here:

March 23, 2012

Playing with Adobe Photoshop CS6 Beta

The other night I downloaded the beta of Adobe’s new Photoshop CS 6 Beta. You can download  the beta for yourself from Adobe labs.

First things first, Photoshop CS6 is FAST. It starts up in 1/3 of the time that it takes CS5. Additionally, once it is open, individual image and psd files open really quickly. Beyond the boot up times, everything feels snappier. I think CS5 suffered from being a bit bloated, throughout the Creative Suite days, Adobe kept adding and adding features but in the same time created a program that felt heavy and cumbersome. To the point where I would avoid using Photoshop and opt for illustrator if at all possible.

Photoshop is fun to use again.

Next, looking at the interface, it’s now dark grey in lieu of the previous lighter shade (don’t worry, it can be reverted to the old look for those scared of change). Personally I like the new look, it’s cleaner and it makes what you’re working on stand out as opposed to the tools. It also brings the interface in line with what they have been doing with Lightroom. I’m willing to bet that all of the new CS 6 interfaces will default to this new look.

Along with the new dark grey look, the “Application Frame” is now selected by default. This is the strange windows within a window configuration that has been the default on Windows machines for years. In fact one of the things I loved after moved from Windows to a Mac was that the application frame was gone. I love how photoshop windows snap to the edges of your screen and go away when the application is deselected because I don’t have to minimize the frame.

Ill look to play some more with the new features in the coming days including the new crop tool and searchable layers.

See what others are saying:

The Verge – Adobe Photoshop CS6 hands-on preview

Gizmodo – Photoshop CS6 Review: The Best Update In Recent Memory

Engadget – Adobe unveils Photoshop CS6 beta with redesigned UI and 65 new features, download it for free today