Latest Project: Shake Ye Off

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

There was one night in 2014 when I was working really late on two different projects with deadlines on the same day which happened to be at the same time the next morning. With my very slow work computer, I saw all my coworkers go home one by one until I was the last person left on the team still in the office. Then my part of the office went home. Then the entire office went home. The night guard walked by a couple times and went home, I guess. And it was just me and the song "Shake It Off" by Taylor Swift.

Now Grey has an open floor plan which means music is usually consumed through headphones but with the entire floor to myself, I turned it wayyyyyyy up.

So besides being an absolute bop, "Shake It Off" has a place in my heart for this reason, because it helped power me through that entire night and morning when the office lights turned back on and people slowly filed in for the day and I was still working. It's a near-perfect song with a cute music video. But if there's one thing I'd change, it'd be the weird spoken-word/rap portion of the song.

Later that year, in August 2014, I tried to be the change I wanted to see in the world by splicing the real "Shake It Off" song with an instrumental karaoke version and laying Kanye West's verse in the N.A.S.A. song "Gifted," but it didn't turn out well. It was actually kind of bad, which is why you won't hear it.

Almost exactly four years later, inspired by procrastination, I found the perfect Kanye song to put into that part of "Shake It Off," and now it's finally perfect.

So unplug your headphones and blast this in your very own stupid, open-office floor plan because the people deserve an aural blessing.

Untitled_Artwork.jpg

And if you think about it, aren't they singing about the same thing?

Latest Project: Amsterdam (and a little Berlin and Antwerp)

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

Since I moved to New York City for an internship in the summer of 2011, I lived with the same people and their dog for six-and-a-half years. After the pet mover came to pick up Ego for her new life in Amsterdam, I cried and cried and cried. Shortly thereafter, I bought tickets to Amsterdam to see her in the summer.

Below are photos from the trip, none of which, include pictures of me snuggling and smothering Ego because they're all on my phone.

On this trip, I also visited the Rijksmuseum and saw paintings I studied in art history. It's always an experience to finally see with your eyeballs something you studied and minored in, and it's an entirely different experience to see it through the lens of 21st Century technology.

Wandering around the streets of Amsterdam, I found this little shop.

 I mean, if I just became king, I'd at least smirk. At most, I'd break into song like Simba.

I mean, if I just became king, I'd at least smirk. At most, I'd break into song like Simba.

When I was a kid, my family visited Eureka Springs, Arkansas and we took this Wild West picture. It's a picture that I hold very dear because it's just so strange. Wanting to recapture that but as an adult, I poked my head into Museumfoto and got this very scary portrait of myself that looks like, as the photographer tried to get my mindset into, "the newly made King William of Orange."

While I was processing all the photos from the trip, I decided to go ahead and buy a ticket back to Amsterdam in November to eat more stroopwaffles and to see Ego again.

This is me now.

 
 

Latest Project: Nathan Hoang Style Guide v3.3

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

After years of delays to refresh and update my style guide, I decided the world really needed to know how I label my Photoshop layers and how I archive everything. Version 1 of the style guide was more about how if you're going to buy me a Christmas gift, here's what I like. Version 3 of the style guide is more about how if I leave for vacation and you have to dig through my computer for files, here's how I stash files away.

I don't expect the many other Nathans Hoang to adhere to v3 if they couldn't even bother to even read v1, but perhaps I'll make another desperate plea on Twitter.

Nathan-Hoang_Style-Guide_mock-up_cover_180715_v3.3_1.jpg
Nathan-Hoang_Style-Guide_mock-up_pages_180715_v3.3_7.jpg
Nathan-Hoang_Style-Guide_mock-up_pages_180715_v3.3_27.jpg

I started in March 2018 and typed and typed and typed while catching up on The Walking Dead, which probably explains why v3.0 had so many typos (because the show is bad), Four months and three version updates later, I have a shareable guide.

IMG_1103.JPG

There was a tonal shift from Version 1 to Version 3, because it might actually be referenced by the public and not just me. And plus I figured out how to draw a t-shirt properly.

I went from using screenshots of actual Apple interfaces to creating my own so it wouldn't be so dated.

Of all the pages, my favorite is my new Comfort-Efficiency-Value Triangle that I made up as I was typing everything out.

Nathan-Hoang_Style-Guide_mock-up_pages_180715_v3.3_7.jpg

You can read it below or download it in PDF form in /books

Latest Project: Alief For Life / Alief Till I Die

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

Whenever someone finds out I'm from Houston, they usually ask, "Do you think you'll ever go back?"

I mean listen, we live in a crazy world and I don't know when my time will be up on this Earth, but I hope my body will find its way back to Alief. That's all I can ask for.

And hey, is this endless repping of Alief and Houston getting old? I don't know, but every time Jay-Z shouts out Brooklyn, I don't really care and I live here, and whenever Beyoncé shouts out Houston, I lose my mind and throw up the Cougar paw, so I'll continue repping Alief for life

And that's how I ended up with these two designs. Drawing inspiration off the official Alief logo, I wanted to say what I've been saying for a while, "I will rep Alief until I die," so I sketched this out in Procreate during the 2018 State of the Union address.

Alief Til I Die, digital. 2018

Alief_Till_I_Die_V1.1

My new roommate brought up the good point that maybe it's not a great idea to bring up death with a school district. I mean, Alief is a town, but she's not wrong. So I made this to balance things out.

Alief For Life, digital. 2018

alief-for-life_procreate_180216_nh_v1.0

I intended to print these onto shirts and bags for my eventual store, which was called "Never Change" at the time (Sidenote: When I brought this up to my internship-day friends, June and Haywood, they roooooooooasted me), so I got a sample tote and it looked fine, I guess (Sidenote: These aren't the official totes, the design was printed on too low), but I decided it'd need to be on two separate bags instead of a double-sided bag, so I gave it to my high school geometry pal, Christi, who was in town.

I hope I live a little longer, but when I die, bury me underneath the Alief store.

Grim Sleeper. 2018
Alief Cemetery: A Texas landmark

Latest Project: Lion Harty Phone Case

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

I always hated the Society6 mentality of taking a thing you made and putting it on practically everything they sell: A pillow, shower curtain, regular curtain, clock face and a bath mat. I mean, if you want to get your money, I'm all for it, but it's not for me. If I was going to make a thing, I wanted it to make sense for the medium. So out of spite of nobody except my imagination, I wanted to make a unique phone case for my upcoming store.

In 2016, I got a new project manager and she was new to Grey and her phone lock screen background said, "NOBODY CARES. WORK HARD." Not one to encourage hard work, I gave her my "LAY LOW, WORK SLOW" phone background instead.

I checked back in a year or so later to see what phone background she had now. It was neither the "WORD HARD" one nor the "WORK SLOW" one. Great. I asked her what her favorite animals are and she said a lion and sloth. Cool. 

 Experimenting with layout, looks, brushes and color. Always gotta accommodate the headroom up top for the clock

Experimenting with layout, looks, brushes and color. Always gotta accommodate the headroom up top for the clock

So I made this lion iPhone wallpaper.

But the whole point of this entire exercise was to make a phone case…so…

Hell yeah. Now I just have to do a sloth.

Coming to the /shop

Latest Project: QR Codes

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

As I begin to fix my website to prepare it for the store, I'm seeing where I can fix other areas, too, especially since once every year, someone on Reddit has a ShowerThought™ that goes something like, "There should really be a sarcasm font," and then some loyalist who I'm grateful for, says, "Hey, why not try Sartalics!" And then I experience what seems to be a DDOS attack, but it's just a bunch of sarcastic nerds looking at how to be sarcastic online.

Screen Shot 2018-06-08 at 11.24.09 PM.png

Ever since I changed my website from a hand-coded HTML site to a Squarespace, I wanted to fix it so it's not templated. The scrolling marquee is a holdover from the HTML site, and the little bug of the moose icon below the left-hand navigation. The little moose pointed to my Tumblr, which I was obsessed with, but then my /latest blog and Tumblr achieved singularity.

moosehead.jpg

Not wanting to lose that dumb little bug but also not wanting to point to the Tumblr anymore, I decided to put one of my URLs that I'd been holding onto since the early 2012 to use.

Anyway, not going to spoil it for any of us, just know that iOS 11 has an automatic QR Code reader when you turn on your camera and point it towards the code.

I don't know where this QR code below goes (it used to point to nathanhoang.com before the addition), but I printed them out and posted them around DUMBO in 2011. 

 
mario qr code.jpg
 

Latest Project: Point and Shoot Bicycle

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

Inspired by my cousins, Lauren and Chloe, who dug out their old Canon Powershot, I found the old Canon point-and-shoot film camera that my parents took on vacations.

I'd been scanning a lot of family photos lately, and seeing the pictures taken on this camera brought back memories, so I decided to hook it up to my bicycle like a very two-dollar GoPro and take some pictures around Brooklyn like a Trader Joe's-brand Bill Cunningham.

I was biking around looking for a place to ball in Brooklyn. I ended up finding the pier out in Brooklyn Bridge Park where made zero points, zero assists and maybe a couple rebounds. So I went to a playground pictured here where I worked on my fundamentals and at no risk of getting dunked on. (Picture taken on iPhone)

Anyway, here are my favorites.

Getting the film developed was expensive but getting that irreplicable film grain and nostalgia is worth it kinda. I don't know. Haha. It's expensive. But there's something about the delayed gratification and never uploading the images to Instagram, a platform I now despise, that makes me enjoy this rediscovered medium.

Latest Project: Alief Assemble

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

Did you hear? I'm from Alief, Texas.

I went to Heflin Elementary School for six years, O'Donnell Middle School for three years, and Alief Hastings High School for four years. I'm a lifer and one time well into or after college, we had a Heflin Elementary School reunion. I'm told that's weird, but Alief is just a weird, special place.

Some famous alums include Beyoncé (for a semester at Elsik), Rashard Lewis, Tila Tequila, Michael and Martellus Bennett, and I wondered what would happen if every school combined forces and work as one instead of having dumb high school rivalries (Elsuck, amirite?). Like if all those alums except Tila Tequila got together to do something great. It'd be pretty awesome. Like, the Alief's first school, Alief Hastings High School, has the Fighting Bears, and the rival sister school, Alief Elsik High School, has the Mighty Rams, the newest school, Alief Taylor has the Roaring Lions, and Alief Kerr has regular tigers.

Regular tigers? Yeah. I checked.

alief kerr bengal tigers facebook conversation.jpg
 

What would happen if all these schools just…joined forces. Like…literally came together…and protected Alief?

Behold!

I shared this initial sketch of this guy to my good friend and high school prom date Caroline and she named it MegAlief and I thought that was genius so shout out to Caroline.

On a flight back home to Alief for Têt, I sketched this idea in Procreate. It went through different stances, but just standing erect was too ominous and X-Men Sentinel-esque. There was an image I ran across on Tumblr years ago of a kid by Mike Cohen that always stuck with me, so I took his little stance and made it for this robot holding Alief's giant sundial pencil.

alief-assemble_procreate-timelapse_megalief_ipad-pro_180224_nh_v1.0

Once I felt good about the shapes and stylings of the robot, I began on the individual school robots. This was infinitely much tougher.

alief-assemble_procreate-timelapse_bots_ipad-pro_180224_nh_v1.0

After getting the thumbs up from my brother and cousins, I traced the robots in Illustrator.

 The Illustrator process: 1. Tracing the Procreate lines // 2. refining it so the angles make sense // 3-5. Color // 6. Shading and stippling // 7. Refining the shades  // 9. Highlights // 10. Thickening stroke

The Illustrator process: 1. Tracing the Procreate lines // 2. refining it so the angles make sense // 3-5. Color // 6. Shading and stippling // 7. Refining the shades  // 9. Highlights // 10. Thickening stroke

Then I sat on these illustrations for months and worked on other stuff while waiting to go back home in May to photograph the four campuses on the weekend so it wouldn't be creepy. It had been a long while since I've been back in the vicinity of Hastings and boy did it bring back memories. Like falling asleep in the back of French class and getting yelled at by Mr. Katre and him telling me I'm no longer allowed to sit against the wall anymore. There were more memories that was always funny to me.

I often go into things and not know how it'll live, but I'd been thinking about opening a store for Alief-related stuff. Like how Kanye West sells socks that says Calabasas on it, except mine says Alief. But with these, I knew I wanted to at least make something I would've liked as a 15-year-old: stickers.

So look out for these on your TI-84s, Alief Seniors Class of 2019!

Latest Project: Mud

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

I didn't start drinking coffee until after my mom told me I should learn how to drink coffee in high school because I'd need it in college; after someone woke me up in Intro to Art History 1301 because class was over and I told him my next class (Intro to Art History 1302) was also in this auditorium so I just slept through that class, too; after I pulled an all-nighter at my first internship and fell asleep at my desk in Boulder; after I pulled another all-nighter at my second internship and fell asleep at my desk in New York; after I moved to East Village across the street from Mud.

Literally across the street. Like, if I made a tin-can telephone from my fire escape to Mud, I could put in an order, run down the six flights and get the cup in 30 seconds.

Mud is special to me because I'd grab a cup every day on my way to work and the people there were part of the 9th Street community: Greg and Seth would talk basketball with us, we invited everyone to our Fourth of July parties, Garrett took Mark and Bonnie's bed when they moved to Amsterdam. And also their coffee tastes like hot chocolate.

 After Hurricane Sandy in 2012, the Mud Truck came to the rescue and the line went around the block.

After Hurricane Sandy in 2012, the Mud Truck came to the rescue and the line went around the block.

Anyway, during a brief period when my roommate, Bonnie, and I had an overlap in unemployment, I talked about doing this project where she'd blog about coffee and I'd paint different coffee shops using their coffee. That never happened.

Five years later and inspired by the stylings of Christoph Niemann, I finally decided to see how it'd be. First I started in Photoshop, using Kyle's brushes with a couple colors: black coffee, and coffee mixed with white paint to mimic cream.

The painting on the left was based on a picture I took in April. When I came back a month later, I realized the windows were open: my favorite time of year, when I could literally sit outside Mud for hours. So I redid the windows in Photoshop and had the draft to base my painting off of.

Now I knew coffee was a weird medium (I've seen my mom dye fabrics in coffee), but I wasn't expecting it to be so faint. I experimented different techniques on how to maximize color with temperature, layers and grounds-to-water ratio, but no matter what, it was never as dark as it gets when I spill coffee on my white tee.

 Experimenting different methods with two of the three mugs I saved from downsizing.

Experimenting different methods with two of the three mugs I saved from downsizing.

It was becoming clear that the "black coffee" color from the Photoshop test was an overestimation so I'd just have to be patient and layer coffee over coffee.

It took two episodes of Master Chef Junior and the first quarter of Wonder Woman, but I like how it ended up. It was a struggle to scan because it's so faint, and I'm not sure how long it'll last because coffee is acidic and that's not good for paper, but the possibility of me licking the paper is also on the table.

  Mudspot , May 6, 2018. Coffee on paper That's not me in the window but that's definitely  Ego  on the ground.

Mudspot, May 6, 2018. Coffee on paper
That's not me in the window but that's definitely Ego on the ground.

Because I'm obsessed with things in sets of threes, I'm going to work on Mud's two other venues, Mud Hut on 1st and Houston and Mud Truck (RIP).

Latest Project: Houston Astros World Series Champions

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

In October 2017, a corner of the office had an MLB Playoff bracket for $1, so I had the Houston Astros going all the way. I got laughed at for being hometown. Just as I got laughed at when I wore my Astros hat to this Pumpkin Lantern Blaze thing and took the Metrorail back home, which stopped by Yankee Stadium where my Astros lost 1 to 8. But guess what?

Astros won it all. 

And I won $4 instead of $8 because I had to split the pot with some other dude.

(Quick aside: My roommates, my good friend Joe and I sat in the bleachers at Yankee Stadium for the 2015 AL Wild Card game and we got boos, food and slurs hurled at us throughout the entire game. And the Astros won. And that's when I decided I'd root against the Yankees against everything ever for the rest of time.)

Anyway I happened to be in Texas for my other good friend and former copywriter's wedding, so I got to see the parade with my eyes and my other other good friend Caroline.

Here are some pictures to relive the magic.

This year, I filled out an NBA Playoffs bracket at work and guess who I have winning it all?

That's right, the Houston Rockets.

And guess how much money I'm going win?

No, you're actually wrong, I'm the only one who filled out a bracket so it'll just be me. It's a very sad situation.

Latest Project: Long Dog

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

I keep receipt paper at work for scrap papering, note-taking, to-do-list making purposes, and one day during an in-office happy hour, I doodled my friend's favorite dog on the paper and it wrapped around naturally as receipt paper does, and I thought it was cool and she thought it was cute and then I forgot about it until I checked this place where I printed my Birds and the Bees bag and it turns out, they did all-over printing on t-shirts, which is perfect because this doodle wouldn't work unless it was seamless, so then I paced around the apartment with excitement, sat down and fired up Photoshop while watching Nocturnal Animals.

I started off with a sketch of my roommate's favorite kind of dog, even though she's a cat person, the dachshund. Then I had to take that dachshund sketch and put it into Illustrator to stretch the dog out and make sure it'd wrap around correctly.

 Could I have done this in Photoshop? Yeah, but I thought about doing a vector outline first and then decided to not do that at all and keep the lines natural, but by then it was already too late and the program was already open and then I was like, yeah sure. I'm watching  Nocturnal Animals  so who's really paying attention to what I'm doing, anyway?

Could I have done this in Photoshop? Yeah, but I thought about doing a vector outline first and then decided to not do that at all and keep the lines natural, but by then it was already too late and the program was already open and then I was like, yeah sure. I'm watching Nocturnal Animals so who's really paying attention to what I'm doing, anyway?

Once I got the dachshund to the optimal length, I exported her back into Photoshop to start different brush tests.

Testing different Kyle brushes

Happy with how the little guy looked, I went back to the original pup cause I knew at least one shirt would be bought. It took a while to get the correct brush, but it didn't occur to me to fill out the scottie instead of outlining him like the dachshundd.

Testing different Kyle brushes

The final step before I sent these out to be made into shirts was to put it back into the Illustrator template.

 With the shirt template layer turned on

With the shirt template layer turned on

 With the shirt template layer turned off

With the shirt template layer turned off

Now look at these mock-ups and imagine how excited I was to get the orders in.

Just look at it!

I broke my style guide rule and wore a shirt with a print on it to work. I was very excited.

 From my copywriter,  @conopatttt

From my copywriter, @conopatttt

 From my account person,  @caatnaps

From my account person, @caatnaps

My other roommate works in fashion and gave me her approval, so it'll be in my revamped store soon!

Also, because I like things in threes, there'll be a third dog soon.

Latest Project: Grey's Dog and Pony

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

Six times a year, Grey gets the agency together after work to enjoy a happy hour together. They call it Dog and Pony. I don't know why, I must've missed it during orientation.

March 2018's Dog and Pony is going to be put on by the Famously Effective Women of Grey for Women's History Month and through some happenstance, Jessica Deutsch, my fellow Grey softball outfielder, asked me to make a poster promoting the Dog and Pony.

So I made some posters. And then I painted some posters.

Not entirely sure how I ended up making three posters, but I couldn't stop after one. I think it's because I thought of the empowering phrases that are all around pop culture and sweaters since November 2016: "Wild Feminists," "Future is Female," and "Slay Bitch."

It became the basis of the concepts. I don't remember which poster concept I thought of first, the photographic one where it's more Wolf & Horse than Dog & Pony, or the fully painted one that's more Dog versus Pony than Dog & Pony, but I do remember telling Jess that I was planning on spending my weekend working on the posters because I was super excited about them and she said, "What?? No! It's the weekend! You should enjoy yourself! Go make some friends!" But the thing is, it's really hard to make friends after you turn 30 and the only friends you have at that point are the ones you already have and also any animals you adopt.

So late Friday night, while unironically listening to Sugar Ray, I started things off the way I usually do, with Procreate:

As you can see, I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing. But I started getting it to the point where the horse was less of an intruding cartoon character and more of a demonic horse. Once I was happy with the general layout, I traced the landscape in Illustrator so I could paste it into Photoshop and paint into it.

I decided to keep it achromatic because it was much more dramatic, heroinic, and because Jess needed it the next day and I had spent too much time on the tarot card. Anyway, I was very please with how this turned out because I always wanted to try landscapes for when I finally get started on my Space Zoo book.

When I was thinking about "Future is Female," I remembered watching Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, with my brother a couple months ago, and the idea of tarot cards was still fresh in my head, so I went with that instead of a crystal ball.

Grey Dog and Pony: Future Is Female

Hopefully more people show up to this Dog and Pony than the happy hour I set up for Texas expats who work at Grey the other day.

Making new friends is hard :(

Latest Project: Line Star State

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

I know, I know. Yet another Texas-based project.

Turns out, I was never happy with the original design from two years ago with the way the lines didn't align, so I revisited it, and gave it a refresh.

Though I liked the minimalism of the square in lieu of a star, I remembered this hilarious joke my brother told me when we were in elementary school. It went something like:

It was a new kid's first day at a new school and the teacher was like, "Hey what's your name?" and the kid was like, "Texas," and the teacher was like, "No really, what's your name?" and the kid was like, "Really, it's Texas," and the teacher was like, "If you don't tell me your name I'm going to send you to the principal's office," and the kid was like, "I swear to you, my name is Texas" but the teacher didn't believe him and he got sent to the principal's office and on the way he ran into a bully and the bully was like "Hey what's your name?" and the kid was like, "Texas," and the bully was like, "No really," and the kid was like, "Yeah, really, my name is Texas,"  and the bully was like, "If you don't tell me your real name, I'm going to stab you," and the kid was like, "You gotta believe me, it's Texas," and then the kid gets stabbed and he goes to the nurse's office and she was like, "What's wrong?" and the kid was like, "I got stabbed," and the nurse was like, "Where?" and the kid was like, 🎶 Deep in the heart of Texas ♬

Anyway, I remember laughing around on the floor at that joke and tried telling it at school but nobody had the patience for it, much like how you probably didn't have the patience to read that entire copy block.

Long story short, I wanted to explore different shapes besides a square, starting with a heart.

1) v1.0: Lines are all willy nilly nothing matched up, nothing matters
2) v2.0_1: Lines have rounded terminals, the edges are clean and ends on a corner
3) v2.0_2: There's a red heart in the middle
4) v2.0_3: There's an X instead of a square, just to see how it looks, it doesn't look great
5) v3.0_1: Added some shadows over the lines so they like latticed
6) v3.0_2: There's a red heart in the middle but with some shadows around

I liked the latticed heart and after doing a very informal straw poll of my old roommates and a fellow coworking expatriate, it was unanimous. 

 That's the actual Eiffel Tower in Paris, Texas. Ask to see my profile picture sometime.

That's the actual Eiffel Tower in Paris, Texas. Ask to see my profile picture sometime.

At last, that giant statue of Sam Houston, Big Tex and I will finally be able to sleep at night knowing the diagonal lines meet up.

Latest Project: 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 Deep in the Heart of Texas

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

I usually make a flag for the Olympics, but it's been kinda crazy this year, so I just made a bunch of flags for Texas Independence Day instead.

 The Stars At Night, Are Big And Bright 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 Deep in the Heart of Texas

The Stars At Night, Are Big And Bright 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 Deep in the Heart of Texas

 Friday Night Lights, Are Big and Bright 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 Deep in the Heart of Texas

Friday Night Lights, Are Big and Bright 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 Deep in the Heart of Texas

 The Marfa Lights, Are Big and Bright 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 Deep in the Heart of Texas

The Marfa Lights, Are Big and Bright 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 Deep in the Heart of Texas

Latest Project: Turn Texas Blue

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

Texas is very close to turning blue. I mean, especially when you have someone like Ted Cruz in the US Senate, we're pretty close to going blue. I have a telephone reminder to call Ted Cruz's offices every weekday to tell him I don't agree with what he's doing. Ted Cruz once shut down the government by filibustering with the child's book, Green Eggs and Ham. This shutdown resulted in my not being able to go to several national parks and monuments while on my 50-state road trip.

To say I don't like Ted Cruz is an understatement. I never want to see him ever again. I mean… if my political opponent insulted me, my wife and my dad, I wouldn't really ever support my politic opponent. Ever. But that's me. Someone who loves my family.

I want Ted Cruz out of office so bad that I delayed updating my Project Notes notebooks to make some things. And I hate doing projects without my Project Notes notebook, because that's how I keep track of everything.

That's how much I don't like Ted Cruz.

I discussed this project on Twitter with Brian Thompson, one of the first people I worked with when I freelanced in NYC in 2009. Perhaps this would go on party hats?

Brian told me it'd be too wide for the party hat, which is understandable, so I made this, too.

Maybe it'll go on a party hat. Maybe it'll go on a clipboard. We'll see.

Don't boo. Vote.

Latest Project: Frieds of March 2018

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

10 months ago, after eating at a really good fried chicken restaurant in Greenpoint that has since closed, I was inspired to try more fried chicken sandwiches. 

I told my friend, Casey, that I wanted to make a day of it. It'd be on, oh…I don't know…, March 15, and I'd call it, ummmmm…how about, Frieds of March? So I'd have to wait, like 10 more months to make this stupid event a thing just because I like to commit a really stupid pun.

First I mapped out some noteworthy fried chicken sandwiches in the city.

 Frieds of March, to-eat list

Frieds of March, to-eat list

"How are we going to eat at all these places in one day?" my friends would ask.

Listen. I don't know. The furthest I planned this was the name and date. It's one of those "cross that bridge" situations.

And then they'd ask, Could I eat nine different chicken sandwiches throughout the course of a day? Of course.

Am I going to take a PTO day just so I can eat at least nine friend chicken sandwiches throughout the day? Yes. Of course.

Fine. But would I be ok with eating alone at at least nine fried chicken restaurants because no one else is committed to the craft like me? Absolutely yes.

But I decided that if this is going to be an inaugural event, I should choose just three? So I can do it again next year?

Anyway, I had to make an invitation that wasn't just a calendar invite.

I started with Vincenzo Camuccini's Death of Caesar. An obvious choice, but a painting I'm fascinated with, and one of the few I can remember the name of.

That's not to say I was interested in Julius Caesar. I don't remember much about Julius Caesar; I didn't pay much attention in sophomore English, but I know there was a conspiracy to kill the guy and this and that.

So initially this was just going to be a teaser/save-the-date type invitation, but I wanted it to decode like we're in a secret society, conspiring to commit to chicken, and if you stare at the image for longer than two seconds, you can see what happens on March 15.

Process shots and breakdown of the type transformation. The font is called "Diamonds."

I also considered making Caesar an entire chicken but I made it to sexual, so I abandoned it.

This Chicken Caesar's coming after your man.

Latest Project: Ego on a Canal Boat

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

When I was a kid, I met a terrier at soccer practice and I loved it. I asked Santa for a dog, a terrier if possible, but instead got a hamster.

One day after summer school, I got off the bus and found a dog's snout poking through the fence. I was keeping it company and apparently I kept it company for so long that my mom was worried I got lost or kidnapped or something because she sent my brother out to find my on his bicycle.

 In our first NYC apartment in DUMBO, this is the first time Ego and I cuddled, on what came to be her safe ottoman.

In our first NYC apartment in DUMBO, this is the first time Ego and I cuddled, on what came to be her safe ottoman.

And there was one time when my brother was playing basketball with his friends in the driveway and a dog came up to me and we starting playing together. It wasn't until my mom came home and my brother's friends left that I found out it wasn't playing as I thought. And it wasn't until years later that I realized it was just humping my leg, which explained a lot.

Anyway, that's to say I always wanted a dog, but my parents correctly knew I wouldn't have the responsibility to care for a dog.

 A day after knee surgery when I was still knocked out on drugs, Ego slept by me all night to keep me warm and safe and happy.

A day after knee surgery when I was still knocked out on drugs, Ego slept by me all night to keep me warm and safe and happy.

So when I moved to New York and stayed with my roommates for an internship in 2011, I finally got to live with a dog. Two dreams come true, I guess, and Ego inspired me in so many ways: the Quick Brown Fox series, the Animals in the Night series, cards, a year-long illustration project, computer passwords, wifi network names, iPhone wallpapers, desktop backgrounds, half of my phone storage, and my Space Zoo book which I'll finish eventually.

I haven't even mentioned the time she saved my roommate's life. And I'm not talking about saving someone's soul like chicken noodle soup. Ego literally saved my roommate's life one weekend in the East Village. She's the sweetest dog and one of my best friends and saved my soul.

I always said she was "my dog" even though she was adopted by my roommates in Texas and they brought her up to NYC, but I just felt like she adopted me and accepted me. Was it because when I first walked her, I let her smell literally every tree? Or was it because I always gave her a mound of food? Or maybe she knew I always wanted a dog growing up? Maybe all of that. She's smart.

And she's going to be bilingual because she's moving to Amsterdam with Mark and Bonnie.

I wanted her to remember her time in New York so I made this for her to hang in her crate as she flies KLM.

I found a picture of New York from this past summer and put in Procreate. It was hard to figure out what vessel Ego would sail on from New Amsterdam to Old Amsterdam, but remembered they have canal boats.

Then I imported Procreate's PSD into Photoshop to use Kyle's Brushes.

And there it is.

UPDATE: I'm going to see her in June!

Latest Project: Alief 4 Life

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

If you didn't know I was from Alief, either we didn't grow up together, or we simply have never talked in person.

So in case you didn't know, I'm from Alief and I've been thinking of making Alief stuff. Shirts, perhaps? Because every time I see someone wearing an Alife shirt, I get real excited and think it says Alief and I get upset and I am tired of it.

I made this and maybe it'll be a neon lamp or something. TBD.

Alief 4 Life

Or I could just screen print my Twitter bio onto a bunch of t-shirts and call it streetwear.

 My Twitter bio

My Twitter bio

Latest Project: Laser Chat

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

We've been living in this apartment in Greenpoint for a 18 months and for about 10 of those months, we lived immersed in some draaaaaaam-aaaaaa.

We saw the highs of our neighbor buying a large (and I mean large tv), see his girlfriend move in, hear them adopt a dog together, and within all this, we heard the lows of them fight almost every day through our shared wall. It finally climaxed to the point where things slowly piled up in the trash room and sidewalk. She eventually moved out and so did he, and now we live next door to a family with kids and a piano somehow.

Things that were in the trash room were slowly distributed throughout the building. Their trophy was placed in the gym, their lamp were placed in the game room, and this weird, impressionist…ish painting was hung in the elevator.

 A mysterious, untitled painting appeared in our building's elevator, depicting a quiet, Parisian scene.

A mysterious, untitled painting appeared in our building's elevator, depicting a quiet, Parisian scene.

It's a weird piece in a weird place, but collectively, the building and its super allowed the painting to be hung in the elevator even though the trophy and lamp were taken away and probably trashed.

But maybe the painting wasn't weird. Maybe I was weird. But then after some weeks of it being hung on the elevator, it was back in the trash room.

So I rescued it. Because I'm not weird.

I like to paint stuff on already existing landscapes, and it's been a while since I've painted with real paint, so this is basically just a deck dream but from some garage-sale dream.

I started off in iPad just to see where to put things.

I turned on The Good Place, dusted off my gouache paints and brushes and started to paint on this painting where the image was already printed on the canvas, and boy I forgot how hard straight lines were. 

  LASER Chat , 2017

LASER Chat, 2017

I often wonder if you could improve upon a masterpiece, and if this, indeed, is an improved masterpiece or simply just a fig leave sculpted and glued onto a Greek statue.

 The quiet, Parisian café scene makes a triumphant return to our elevator.

The quiet, Parisian café scene makes a triumphant return to our elevator.

  LASER Chat , 2017 (Gouache on canvas)

LASER Chat, 2017
(Gouache on canvas)

Hopefully this time, this painting won't be taken down and will remain there until we've long moved out, like those pair of Nike Frees that are still hanging on my East Village apartment's fire escape.

UPDATE (November 27, 2017):

Someone took it down, and so I put it back up, and then someone took it back down again. I incquired the building's Facebook group and though Liz seemed to enjoy it, Bryan, my new enemy, hated it.

Anyway, I did a reverse Google search and found the original painting, Springtime in Paris, on sale for 19€.

Screen Shot 2017-11-27 at 7.03.57 PM.png

Update 2: December 29, 2017

Turns out my good friends Joe and Yuwi took (rescued?) the painting from the elevator because they're moving to Seattle and wanted to hang it up in their new apartment.

That's Joseph wearing a Houston Astros World Series Championship hat holding my painting in his near-empty Brooklyn apartment.

Update 3: January 4, 2018

Apparently, the painting was too big to pack and bring with them so they gave it to my other friend Mike, which it seems to be settled in its new home in Queens.

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Latest Project: Jess and Skyler's Wedding Snapchat Geofilter

Added on by Nathan Hoang.

I used to be really into Tumblr. There might be a day that I get back into Tumblr, that's why I still have that tiny Moosehead icon in my menu column. Like other online communities, I made friends on it, but for whatever reason, on Tumblr, I actually met some of them in real life.

Skyler is one of them. And it wasn't on purpose. I just applied to Leo Burnett New York and they paired me with him. He was my first New York City partner, and the agency tasked us to make an ad representing the entire global agency on the inside cover of for a trade magazine to run during the biggest agency award show and that was the first ad I ever made and it was with Skyler.

Anyway, long story short, I thought we'd be partners forever, but then he got engaged and asked me to make him a Snapchat geofilter for his upcoming wedding in lieu of a wedding gift, which was a relief because I'm bad at wedding gift giving – I once gave a good friend of mine a 50-foot extension cord – so at least this wouldn't be that.

Given that Skyler also works in advertising and is super detail-orientated even though his résumé doesn't say so, we went through rounds until it got to a place where my client (Skyler) and his CEO (Jess, Skyler's fiancée-now-wife) were happy, and to help them imagine a beautiful, lavish wedding, I used our First Family's wedding photo, Kanye and Kim.

Needless to say, it was a beautiful wedding even without my help. And bonus points for asking people to not take pictures during the ceremony, therefore rendering my filter useless for the main part of the wedding.

Congratulations guys!