Monday, February 11, 2019

The Trap Vector Blueprint

UPDATE: No one really supported The Trap Vector, so I shuttered it in favor of continuing to work on The 8BitCubist

I've spoken about this briefly in other places, but I wanted to give a more proper explantation of The Trap Vector project. There’s enough information to go into that I’ve decided to break this posting into 7 parts.

This is the part where I define how The Trap Vector came to be.

Around 2011, I had just been laid off of my job at Rockstar San Diego, and I was beginning to become a little disillusioned with my career in the game industry and life. I had let politics wear on me, my family wasn’t doing that great, my social life wasn’t where I wanted it to be, and in general, I felt like I was fighting to stay afloat in quicksand.

I knew things had to change or I would fall into a pit of despair that I couldn’t pull myself out of, so I started changing course with a lot of my activities and really jumped into the fine arts, fashion, writing, improvement strategies/tactics, and started expanding my horizons.

I hadn’t felt that energized in a long time. In fact, the last time I felt like that was that time period in my life when my parents worked with me to expand my mind in numerous ways. It was a synergistic experience. I was that curious kid that wanted to see and learn everything I could. Over several years, they worked with me to give me powerful perspectives and insights on life. They had been to many different countries, met so many people, and seen so many different things that they felt it would be a shame for me to miss out on those experiences. That period of time stuck with me, and in my later years, the longing for those mind-expanding experiences came again.

Returning to the 2011 era, I needed to process what I was feeling/thinking/experiencing, so I developed a form of visual journaling that relied on an abstract language of forms and shapes. You will recognize the most prominent of those shapes as the arrow and the portal. These shapes came from various sources and don’t directly mean anything on their own, but they hold a lot of meaning for me. These representations are, after all, abstract.

For years, I maintained and refined this abstract language I was coming up with and came up with over 400 thoughtful concepts that have been archived and are now being released in the form of a fine art print project known as The Trap Vector.

- Benja -

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Flattening Your Prints

In the last post, I talked about framing your prints. What I forgot to mention is how to flatten them. The Trap Vector prints come rolled in damage-resistant kraft tubes for safe transit. This is a common practice, especially for larger prints. As your art arrives, you'll want to flatten them out before storing/displaying them.

Here are some recommended steps:

  1. Find a flat table or surface to lay your print on. It should be dry and free from dust/debris.
  2. Open the tube and slowly pull the protective tissue paper to slide out the enclosed prints.
  3. While leaving the tissue paper in place to protect the print, carefully unroll them so that the curl s are going into the flat surface.
  4. It is NOT recommended that you reverse-roll the print in the opposite direction unless you have experience doing so.  
  5. Distribute a few books on each of the corners and in the center of the print. (If you don't have books, you can use some other flat-bottomed items that will keep your prints in place.)
  6. Let your print sit for a while under the weight of the books. Usually, a day will be more than adequate, but you can probably get away with overnight or while you're off at a picnic.
Alternatively, if you get your prints professionally framed, you can just bring the rolled tube to your favorite framer, and they'll take care of everything for you.

- Benja -

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Three Options For Framing/Storing Your Prints

The Trap Vector Prints

Collecting prints? Of course you are. I was asked about what to do with prints if they aren't planning on putting them up on a wall just yet. You could simply keep them in the tube they were shipped in, but many opt for a storage solution of some type.

In general, you have three framing options:

  1. Print Protectors - Not really framing, but you can store prints safely in protectors or portfolios like the ones available from Baroque or by searching on Amazon. Shop around to find what you need. This option is usually employed when collecting numerous prints.
  2. Ready-Made Frames - This is the popular option. Head to your local framing shop such as Michaels, Art-To-Frame, or any place that sells frames and ask for styles in the desired size. You'll find something that looks good and won't destroy your wallet. Most prints for The Trap Vector are 18x24.
  3. Professional Framing - This is the nicest and most expensive option. Michaels actually does custom framing and is a suitable start if you've never gone with the professional option. You can always ask a decorator or an artist/gallerist to recommend a framer near you if you want to go this route.
There are other options available, but these are the most common. If you have any ideas or comments, let me know!

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