Sunday, March 22, 2009

My mentor, Marc Arceneaux

As a young artist still in high school, I had the good fortune to have an older brother, six years my senior. He was a creative person naturally, and words were often paired with his witty drawings.

When I was ready to decide what I wanted to study I followed in his footsteps and traveled to San Francisco to study at The San Francisco Art Institute. San Francisco in 1971 was still a wild and wooly place but much of the aura of the Summer of Love had degenerated into a much funkier harder edged scene.

But it was still a very good place to be, as a designer and as a curious art student. My brother was always encouraging during my art school years and introduced me to many of the founding schools of thought that built modern day design. He was an enthusiast of Bauhaus design, and always shared books he had found.

When he landed a contract to author two books on design history; Streamline: The Art and Design of the Forties and Atomic Age: The Art and Design of the Fifties, I was fortunate to work alongside him. We did fascinating research into these design eras. It was also my first exposure to publishing and having my art published. That foundation in Streamline and Atomic design has stayed with me always. Thanks, Marc.

10 Things I Learned From My Brother

1) Preliminary sketches are important.

2) Good design is inherent in a beautiful life plan.

3) Typography is important and historically grounded
in our psyche.

4) Raymond Lowie is a god.

5) Things will work out.

6) Treat everyone with respect, everyone is
an artist in their own way.

7) Borrowing from art history to create something new
is perfectly acceptable.

8) Use excellent art supplies and care for them.

9) Never let anyone borrow your personal Rapidograph.

10) Learn as much as you can about computer design.
(His advice in 1976)

© Copyright 2009 Guy Arceneaux All rights reserved

Neo-Nouveau Artist in California

The logo for Sylvandale Gardens, in California, takes its distinctive look from hand-lettered typography. It shows the elegant curvilinear balance of a well-trained eye coordinated with controlled pen strokes. It is simply superior to an artist using Illustrator or Photoshop.

Sharky's Artist Profile, My Brother:

Marc Jahn Arceneaux

Marc Jahn Arceneaux is a native of New Orleans and evacuated before Huricane Katrina. He took with him only a few of his favorite artworks. Today he shares his story with us and a few of the saved pieces. His career as an artist and author spans over 40 years and a variety of artistic endeavors. He has maintained successful studios in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New Orleans. He is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. Marc Arceneaux published 14 books, including his art history books "Streamline Art & Design of the Forties" and "Atomic Age Art & Design of the Fifties." The New York Art Directors Club awarded Marc The Gold Award in 1975 for his contributions to National Lampoon's million seller book release, "Kaleidoscope: The 1964 Yearbook Parody" on which the movie Animal House was based. He was also part of the 60s and 70s San Francisco golden era of album cover design, creating hand lettered logos for Canned Heat, Bobby Gentry, Danny O'Keefe, and Herbie Hancock, among others. More recently, Marc's 1997 Budweiser Mardi Gras poster became an instant classic. In 2000, he completed two large murals for the lobby of the Royal St. Charles Hotel.

© Copyright 2009 Guy Arceneaux All rights reserved