Robin Sloan is a writer and media inventor based in Oakland. He's the author of two novels, Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore and Sourdough. He's also written a variety of short stories and internet projects, dabbles in programming and machine learning, and makes extra virgin olive oil with his partner Kathryn Tomajan. In this conversation, Robin and I talk about what it means to be a media inventor and how this is similar to being a designer, his early career working at Twitter and Current TV, and the value of pursuing diverse creative projects.
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Josh Owen is an industrial designer and educator. He runs his own design studio, Josh Owen LLC, and is a Full Professor and the Chair of the Industrial Design Department at the Rochester Institute of Technology, where he also works with the Vignelli Center for Design Studies. In this episode, Jarrett and Josh talk about spending his summers on archeological digs with his father and how that influenced his interests in history and culture, how he started teaching, and how his work as a designer and teacher influence each other.
Johanna Drucker is an author, book artist, visual theorist, and cultural critic. She's currently a professor in the Department of Information Studies at the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA. Her research and writing has focused on visual language and letterforms, typography, visual poetry, the history of books and digital aesthetics. In this episode, Jarrett and Johanna talk about her interest in making books as objects, her work on design history, and the being both an artist and academic.
Lucinda Hitchcock is a book designer, typographer, and educator. She's on the faculty at RISD, where she's currently the head of the graphic design department and has designed books for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, MFA Boston, and Tufts University Art Galleries. Her research involves narrative, place, and the shape of language. In this episode, Jarrett and Lucy talk about graphic designers as cultural curators, compassionate teaching, and what she learned during her recent sabbatical.