Making a show ain’t all in the camera work. To design our titles and supers and general graphic everything, we’ve brought on illustrator and graphic designer Emily Smith! This completes the Vancouver Mini Maker Faire trifecta. Emily started the event, which pretty much means that if it weren’t for her, Ben and I wouldn’t have met and this show wouldn’t exist.
Emily’s been super busy lately, so I sent her a wee interview via email. Get to know her a little, would ya? She’s gonna play a huge role in bringing the taco to life.
Tell me about an illustration project you’ve recently done that you absolutely love. Personal or professional, it doesn’t matter.
Some of my favourite illustrations to do are those that are both technical and have some sort of creative / artistic element. For fun a couple of years ago, I made this ‘octo-mollusc‘ pattern by following Julia Rothman’s ‘How to make a repeat pattern‘ tutorial. I had made repeating patterns in Photoshop before, but drawing on paper and physically cutting the paper and taping it just felt so much more daring than copying and pasting in Photoshop. It was a bit more finicky than I thought, putting it all together, but once I got all of the sides to line up, I found it very rewarding!
What kind of music do you anticipate listening to as you work on THTV?
I’m really big into podcasts, and Radiolab is one of my favourites. They do a really great job of relating science and technology back to the human experience. My two favourite podcasts that they have ever broadcast are ‘Famous Tumors‘ and ‘Parasites‘. Yah I know, they don’t sound like the most appealing topics, but the way that they weave stories of people and experiences together is really both captivating and thought-provoking.
If The Big One (earthquake!) were to strike tomorrow, what kind of DIY skills do you see yourself relying on?
Whenever I think this sort of scenario through, I usually think that there will likely be a lot of glass everywhere. Glass, and water – or some sort of flooding (i.e., not drinkable). I imagine that there are certain basic needs – like having proper footwear, wearing my bicycle helmet, having a first-aid kit ready, a radio, preserves (ideally non-breakable), water and a flashlight will be my first line of defence.
After seeing what those affected by Hurricane Sandy and the tsunami in Fukushima are going through, it’s pretty clear that there is a huge effect on the local community, post-natural disaster. If I make it through the initial shake in one piece, I imagine there will be some efforts to restore things, or at least deal with the after effects. Seeing how members of a Tokyo hackerspace responded in Fukushima by making a DIY Geiger counter kit as well as solar-powered lanterns, hygiene packs, among other items, I can see myself getting involved with facilitating some sort of project like this. It doesn’t have to be something technological, either. It could be something as simple as pairing together enough resources between 10 people on the block to make food for the week. I’d like to be involved at any level, whether it be cleaning pots and pans, cooking a few meals, or setting a nice table. I’ll probably be knitting a lot as well, to keep warm (if that’s the case).
I think my role with the DIY movement in Vancouver has been to bring together and connect various individuals and groups. I love seeing that creative spark that can happen when a knitter or spinner realizes they have something in common with an engineer. I can see that this “pulling together” of resources, individuals, or project planning, to make a bigger shelter or protective space or nourishing environment, will be what I would bring to the table. That is, if I don’t have a serious head wound!
So far, nobody – not one person – has suggested a title for our show. We’re beginning to wonder if it might actually end up staying Taco Hat. Would that concern you or thrill you as the person who will be developing such an important part of the show’s brand?
That would not concern me at all. I think it would be thrilling. In fact, if the name sticks, I believe that we should make some taco hats and wear them. I imagine the process of making them will go something like this. I also believe that capes are of utmost importance. [Ed. note: This is why we love Emily.]
While we’re on the topic: tacos! Beef, chicken or bean? Hot sauce or no hot sauce?
I’ll have a chicken enchilada, please! Extra spicy. [Ed. note: Also, she's a rebel.]