Brian Stauffer
April 2008
Adolf Who?
When asked, 1 in 4 of Bostons public schools teens didn't know the answer to "Who is Adolf Hitler"?

In response, the Boston School District is making a switch to a form of teaching history through empathy for those who lived through it's tumultuos chapters.  This illustration, which appeared in yesterday's Boston Globe Magazine, was my attempt to show this new method of making kids "walk in the steps of history".

Thanks again go out to Josue Evilla for fantastic topic and venue.
Father and Son Op-Ed
My kids spend a lot of time in the studio, but I usually kick them out when it's time to get down to some serious thinking.  Yesterday was the official Take Your Child To Work Day at my older son's school, so of course it was the perfect day for a same day turnaround assignment  from Brian Rea at the NYT Op-Ed section.

The editorial discussed the 25th anniversary of a critical report on the state of education in the USA entitled, A Nation At Risk.  The report spoke of the imbalances, inequalities, the erosion of our educational foundations, and the possible future consequences for the Nation.

I was fortunate to have Andrés, my 6-year-old on the job with me to help out with the mental heavy lifting.  He saw a ladder in one of my sketches which led to the final.  He was such a big help, in fact, that I asked to include him in the art credit! Seems only fair.

Congratulations Andrés, and welcome to the world of illustration.  And thanks again to Brian Rea for a tricky topic to play with.
NYTimes and The Boston Globe
This past week brought a couple of those juicy topics I love to sink my teeth into, as well as an opportunity to collaborate with a couple fine AD's that I've not worked with in a while.

A big thanks to Nicholas Blechman at the New York Times Book Review for an assignment to illustrate the review for "The Finder".  The book opens with a deadly hit on two janitorial workers suspected of stealing corporate secrets by way of the office paper refuse.  It's been a few years since I did work for Nicholas when he was at the Op-Ed page.  It was good to reconnect on this one int Review.  article here

I enjoyed working some of my line work from the sketches into the finals - something I'm thinking of doing more of.

 Thanks guys for two stimulating assignments.
sketch1 for "The Finder"
This was the sketch which led me to the final solution. Nicholas gave the verbal thumbs up for the direction that became the final.
Greg Klee at the Boston Globe called with a fantastic assignment.  In "How To Defuse A Human Bomb" Drake Bennett explores the practice of de-radicalizing would-be terrorists and martyrs.  It's the cover of Sunday's (4/13) Ideas/Books section of the Globe.  article here
Greg recommended a switch to a figure that was more universally attired for the final. A good call I think. The vest drawing became a big part of the final.
On The Fence + Hillary
The issue of the Mexico/USA border fence may divide more than the Republicans had intended now that there is an initiative to force McCain's hand in the issue.  He is on record in opposition of a border fence, preferring better enforcement of existing laws and the introduction of guest worker programs.  Expect a battle royale within the Republican party as the staunch right tries to define the party with immigration fears as their rallying point.

Chrissy Dunleavy was the AD on this one and she was a pleasure to work with.


For the NYT Op-Ed,  Can Hillary Change?

Today's Op-Ed offers the opinion that it is not necessary for Hillary to get out of the race if she can morph herself into a more positive, more populist candidate. 

She seems to have started a message shift from the "candidate of experience" to "putting the people first".  The writer doesn't see a continuing primary race as a negative unless the negative tactics (incorrectly or correctly) perceived to be the tool of choice by Hillary continue.

Brian Rea was wonderful to work with, as always.
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Stauffer is teaching at TutorMill, an online mentoring site for students of illustration!