by Daniel Beckstrand
Have you ever marveled at the grandeur of a skyscraper? Have you ever been struck by awe while walking through an art exhibit? Perhaps you have felt emotionally impacted by an exceptional film or piece of music? These examples are stand-out moments of intentionally impactful design, and we feel them. They leave their mark on us. Iconic pieces of art and design are immediately recognizable to us and have left their impact throughout history.
As a kid I spent a lot of time admiring animation in the Saturday morning cartoons and Disney movies I watched, and I would often spend hours trying to replicate them in my own style. When Disney teamed up with Pixar and started doing 3D animation, I became especially intrigued at the thought of creating art in a new medium other than the traditional pen & paper. I wanted to learn everything I could about animation.
My admiration of art and design also extended to video games. I grew up playing Nintendo games and I fondly remember how impacted I felt by the characters and animation in Final Fantasy 3 on the Super Nintendo. I loved the “choose your own adventure” style of gameplay and would pick a different character each time I played through the game so that I could explore each story. The character art in the game’s player guide was stunning and I would practice drawing the characters. Video games have a way of really bringing art to life and deliver it straight into people’s hands, and I knew that was something I wanted to be a part of.
As I got older I enrolled in an art history class in order to learn more about art and its influence. The Baroque period was a style that spoke to me, especially Bernini’s sculpture of David. I love the form and action pose of the character and the look of determination on his face as he is readying to throw the stone that would bring down Goliath. At just 24 years old Bernini created sculptures that would impact styles of art and design for centuries to come, and to this day he is considered one of the Baroque periods greatest, credited with being the creator of the Baroque style of sculpture.
These different experiences left an indelible impact on me that instilled a deep love of art and design. I learned at a young age how strong of a force design can be and how it can move people and the emotions. Each piece of artwork is designed to evoke a response and touch an emotion (or multiple emotions) within us, and I knew early on that I wanted to turn that into my career. I want to leave that impression on others that I have so often felt, that feeling of awe and inspiration that arouses the best within all of us.
Design surrounds our everyday lives. While the experiences mentioned above were significant for me, we often fail to recognize the design all around us as we get lost in the hustle and bustle of our busy schedules. Admittedly most design is unremarkable, and more often than not favors function over style. Great design stands apart, it speaks to the achievements of mankind and is always pushing the boundaries of what we consider normal, contemporary, or in style. That is why I always strive to create art and design that is impactful and meaningful. My goal in creating this space is to inspire others to think creatively, boldly, and passionately about design and the effect it can have.
My purpose is to make an impact on the lives of others through great design. To design to impact.
Please feel free to comment, or reach out to me via email or social media if you have any questions, comments, or commissions.