Saturday, December 18, 2010

What if 'design' meets medical lab report?

Wired magazine asked designers to update the design of medical lab reports. Please see more designs here

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Placing ads on shipping boxes

I saw this article in the USPS's magazine, and liked it.

Explaining a business while drawing it helps

I agree with this:

Clive Thompson on the Power of Visual Thinking
Wired Magazine / October 2010

When I went online to shop for a laptop this summer, I faced a blizzard of choices. Was an ultralight worth the price, or would a heavier model do? Did I need a big screen, or would it make the computer a pain to lug around? As I flipped from page to page reading screenfuls of specs, the options baffled me. So I picked up a different thinking tool: a crayon.

Using one of my son’s Crayolas, I drew doodles of all the laptops and covered them with little icons depicting the pros, cons, and cost of each. When I stood back and looked at the pictures, the answer leaped out. I could now “see” at a glance which deal best fit my needs and pocketbook (13-inch MacBook Pro with 8 gigs of RAM).

In essence, I used “visual thinking”—drawing pictures to solve a problem. And if you believe the visualization experts, a new language of pictures may be precisely what we need to tackle the world’s biggest challenges.

My crayon experiment was inspired by Dan Roam, a visual-thinking guru and author of The Back of the Napkin. Roam argues that our culture relies too heavily on words: Our school systems—and political systems—are designed to promote people who are verbal and eloquent. And text tends to encourage us to describe our problems as narratives or linear lists of facts.

Read full article

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Quote: good design = attraction

Designers Accord pledge

I like the purpose of Designers Accord.
This is an explanation of the group's pledge:

(from Communication Arts)
The Accord is not prescriptive and calls for self-regulation. It asks that designers7 publicly declare participation in six ongoing actions:
• Initiate a dialogue about environmental and social impact and sustainable alternatives with each and every client.
• Rework client contracts to favor environmentally- and socially-responsible design and work processes.
• Provide strategic and material alternatives for sustainable design.
• Undertake a program to educate your teams about sustainability and sustainable design.
• Consider your ethical footprint. Understand the environmental impact of your firm and work to measure, manage and reduce it on an annual basis.
• Advance the understanding of environmental and social issues from a design perspective by actively contributing to the communal knowledge base for sustainable design.

Read full article at Communication Arts

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Aluminum VIP party bracelet with global party hot spots

Inspired by night life around the world, these Admit One bracelets carry the energy of the night into the day and wardrobe.
Borrowing from what is a universal item – the wrist brand used to designate the lucky at the velvet rope – these bracelets imbue luck with a twist of the wrist. What was once ephemeral becomes an item of lasting beauty.

Design choices:
Paris. NYC. Barcelona. Buenos Aires. Ibiza. London. Los Angeles. Mexico City. Tokyo.

Color choices:
- Neon orange
- Blue
- Neon green
- Hot pink

Aluminum / Paint / Tyvek.

Jason Solarek / NYC.

Fits most female wrists and male wrists medium or smaller. 6" in total length.

Hand painted.

Customization available:
Yes. Please send us your custom city name, and we'll print it on the bracelet.


To purchase, please click here - buy bracelet

* Please note: color choices are tributes to locations, and are not endorsed by any entity.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Beer and cocktail search engine with purchasing power

This is a concept for a website to find the prices of drinks. The prices would be submitted by 'scouts' at first, and then by anyone (wikipedia style). It's Kayak meets your local bar meets Fandango.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Concept for huge translucent art wall that one or more people can walk along to interact with one another

The above is a concept for an interactive art installation to be displayed in public.

The piece would consists of:
- 75' long x 12' high x 1' thick glass/plexiglas panels.
- the panels are colored differently based upon an emotion or theme such as Anger, Memory, Sex.

The piece is meant to be walked by two people in a direction parallel to the glass, one person on each side, while gazing at each other through the piece.

- glass starts off clear, and gradually turns completely solid red by about 3/4 of the length. The last 1/2 consists of solid red covered glass with gashes cut out from the red covering the glass, allowing the people to see each other, but with the gashes over the other.

- glass starts off clear, and gradually turns completely solid black by about 3/4 of the length. The last 1/2 consists of solid black covered glass with small window bubbles cut out of the black covering the glass, allowing the people to see each other but in a limited way.

- glass starts off white, and becomes clear about 1/2 of the way. It then becomes white again by about 3/4 of the length. The second to last 1/8 is solid white. The last 1/8 is solid black with small bubbles windows. This is a reference to the Memory wall.

The piece could be set in or outdoors, in public or private. Madison Square park would be an ideal location.

I was inspired by a photo of the Philip Johnson Glass House (in Metropolis magazine). The picture showed the house's glass walls covered with a temporary red tint, giving the outside world a new interpretation.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Cool wine labels

Sketched these while in Brooklyn today. Then came home and mocked them up in Photoshop.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Mobile shopping site concept by Solarek Studio

This is a concept for mobile shopping site. We are expanding the fixed investment in the website by migrating the data to a mobile device. With little additional cost, the site's benefits are now available in another shopping medium.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

E-commerce website design for luxury tableware company

I created this design for a fine china company's website. This is part of a series of designs. The design goals:
- Visually represent the brand (elegant, honest).
- Organize a large amount of product data.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

New free service by Solarek Studio

We are launching a new service today that helps retailers find hard to locate items, or unload excess product. For example, if a retailer can sell four placesettings, but only has three, the retailer would create a FREE posting on the Retailers Exchange saying it needs this fourth placesetting.

Likewise, a retailer could have four vases, and wish to sell them. It could post for free these items on the website.

The person that makes the post lists his or her contact information, so the buyer and seller can directly negotiate the transaction. There is no costly 'middle man.'

In sum, the Retailers Exchange that connects buyers with sellers.

This service is designed for retailers, brand, and distributors of home goods. You can post a listing for FREE. Please view the listings at:

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

NYC subway iPhone case by Solarek

I noticed on inCase's website that it is offering some designs on their iPhone shells. I thought, why not offer something functional?

This would be helpful for quick access, and when there is not cell service.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Institutional Investor's Sovereign Funds website design

I designed this website for Institutional Investor's Sovereign Funds organization.

I also designed promotional banners for the other locations on the roundtable tour. Each banner promoted a different event location. Other designs included: London, Coral Gables, and Singapore.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New website design for Connecticut luxury home goods store

I recently designed and coded a new website for a home goods store in Westport, Connecticut. In the attached image, I show my strategy behind the site design. I'd be happy to hear any thoughts or suggestions. Thank you.

New website design for tableware industry leader revealed

Mottahedeh recently hired me to redesign its website. Please find a sample design above.

The parent company Mottahedeh, Inc., based in New Jersey, distributes Mottahedeh, R. Haviland & C. Parlon, and Milestone. I designed the new site to show the three brands with equal footing, and make it easy to navigate to each.

In the attached comparison, I show the enhancements I made over the original.

Currently, the new home page is 'live,' with subsections coming as they are ready.

The new site should be fully ready by January 1st, 2010.

Please find the temporary site here -

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Finding a person or company to assess a company's pollution

I would like to see more businesses get a green assessment. I'm curious what they'd say about my company, too.

Wall St. Journal
Hot Job: Calculating Products' Pollution

Until a few years ago, Nuno da Silva's arcane occupation -- professional pollution calculator -- was of little utility to the corporate world.

But in these days of global-warming worries and greener-than-thou marketing, companies suddenly can't get enough of his services. Revenue at the division he manages exploded 150% in 2008 and continues to expand this year, despite the recession. Since the beginning of 2008, he has added 13 people to his staff, bringing the number of employees to 16.

"We used to be the environmental geeks," said Mr. da Silva, who oversees the U.S. division of a German environmental consulting company, PE International. "Now we're mainstream."

Concerns about greenhouse gases and other environmental hazards have spurred governments and companies to try to reduce the environmental impact of everything from auto fuels to water bottles. The first step in doing that is to assess the pollution those products impose on the Earth.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s most recent environmental effort -- a bid to tag all of its products with information about their environmental impact -- will force hundreds of its suppliers to inventory their pollution, which many expect will create a boom for the pollution-counting profession.

Enter the growing class of "pollution counters" like Mr. da Silva. Using computer models, they process information about the energy and resources consumed by making, using and disposing of a product. At each stage, a product's effects on the soil, water and air are tracked to come up with what is known as a life-cycle assessment.

At chemical maker DuPont Co., the in-house group that does life-cycle assessments has grown from three members to 10 in the past six years.

At New Balance, a Boston-based maker of sneakers and athletic clothing, a "green team" has begun calculating the environmental cost of the plastic soles used in the company's shoes as well as the impact of shipping from New Balance's Asian factories. What the team has found so far suggests that the materials that go into the shoes, rather than the trip from overseas, take the bigger toll on the environment.

Although life-cycle assessments have been around since the 1970s and are fairly common in Europe, the practice has taken off in the U.S. only in the past few years, industry experts say.

But the profession can be lucrative. Calculating the life-cycle impact of a single product can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, and Mr. da Silva said that starting salaries in his field average about $60,000. The first step in doing a life-cycle assessment is collecting data on the environmental impact of the different processes involved, from extracting raw materials to transforming them in a factory. Sometimes that means measuring emissions from a smokestack or a tailpipe, but the statistical information often comes from databases compiled by companies like PE International.

Most serious counters abide by guidelines from the Geneva-based International Organization for Standardization. It is up to the assessor to determine precisely what in a product's production to count and what to leave out.

But no clear rules govern the assessments, whose conclusions can vary sharply. While several organizations are trying to come up with standards, they don't agree, and there are no enforcement mechanisms. There is also nothing to stop companies from looking around for a pollution assessment that will favor their products or points of view.

The American Christmas Tree Association, which represents companies that produce artificial holiday trees, says it did its best to make accurate a life-cycle assessment that compared its products to natural Christmas trees. The assessment, which is still being reviewed, found that an artificial tree was slightly more environmentally friendly, mainly because the biggest source of pollution for either type of tree was consumers driving to get it, and consumers tend to reuse artificial trees.

But the National Christmas Tree Association, which represents tree growers, disputes the findings. "It is patently absurd to think that using a nonbiodegradable, nonrenewable product from a factory is somehow more environmentally friendly than buying a real tree," said spokesman Rick Dungey.

He pointed to a 2009 Christmas tree life-cycle assessment by a different pollution counter that found that natural trees are better for the environment unless an artificial tree is reused for at least 20 years.

Robin Jenkins does assessments for DuPont. To evaluate a potential project to make ethanol out of corn stalks, she talked to farmers, auto makers and regulators. Her recommendations included leaving half of the stalks on the field to prevent soil erosion, a practice the company plans to adopt at a pilot plant it is building in Tennessee.

But sometimes pollution counters find that just doing a calculation has little effect. For example, a life-cycle assessment done for the consumer-products giant Unilever found that smaller bottles of more-concentrated laundry detergent would save water, reduce packaging material and cut greenhouse-gas emissions from transportation.

But consumers continued to choose bigger bottles, which they assumed were a better value, said Gavin Neath, senior vice president of global communications and sustainability at Unilever.

Only after Wal-Mart banned nonconcentrated detergents from its shelves did Unilever make inroads with its pollution-counter-approved product.

Write to Ana Campoy at

View the original article - click here

Monday, August 3, 2009

Before and after pictures of client's new website

Home page:

Results page:

Shopping cart page:

The images above compare our client's website before and after we redesigned their retail website. We launched The Pink Daisy's new site on July 20, 2009.

You're invited to visit the website:

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Spam alert for Ashley Carter Selection Committee Chair US Commerce Association

Two of my clients in unrelated fields received these 'awards' designations (pictured at above), and I think they may be part of a spamming operation and may have hidden motives. To support this theory, I searched for Ashley Carters name and her group and found this notice below from the Spokane Better Business Bureau:

"Recent emails notifying businesses that they have won prestigious awards from a national association appear to be part of a widespread scheme designed to get companies to pay for “vanity” awards and plaques."

The full BBB article can be found here:

The e-mail my client received is below.


I am pleased to announce that Devine Corporation has been selected for the 2009 Best of Wall Township Award in the Glassware Decorators category by the US Commerce Association.

In recognition of your achievement, a 2009 Best of Wall Township Award has been designed for display at your place of business. You may arrange to have your award sent directly to Devine Corporation by following the simple steps on the 2009 Best of Wall Township Award order form. Simply copy and paste this link into your browser to receive your award:

Each year, the US Commerce Association (USCA) identifies companies that we believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and community.

Also, a copy of the press release publicizing the selection of Devine Corporation has been posted on our website. The USCA hereby grants Devine Corporation a non-exclusive, royalty-free license to use, reproduce, distribute, and display this press release in any media formats and through any media channels.

An Award Code has been assigned to your company that can be used on our website for quick access to your award information and press release.

Your Award Code is: HKAS-JDTK


Ashley Carter
Selection Committee Chair
US Commerce Association

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Wal-Mart to put green ratings on products

I'd like to see all my clients with products and services consider doing what Wal-mart is doing: creating green ratings. Please see article below. The logic is three-fold: 1) it helps the planet 2) makes your product cost less 3) puts you ahead of competitors. Consumers care what a product does to the environment.

Wal-Mart Thursday will tell suppliers they must calculate and disclose the full environmental costs of making their products, then allow Wal-Mart to distill the information into a rating system that shoppers will see alongside prices for everything from T-shirts to televisions.

The questionnaire Wal-Mart sends suppliers is below.

Please find the full article here:

Sustainability Index: Supplier Assessment Questions
Energy and Climate

Reduce energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions

1. Have you measured your corporate greenhouse gas emissions? (Y/N)

2. Have you opted to report your greenhouse gas emissions to the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)? (Y/N)

3. What are your total greenhouse gas emissions reported in your most recently completed report? (Enter total metric tons CO2e, e.g. CDP6 Questionnaire, Section 2b -- Scope 1 and 2 emissions)

4. Have you set publicly available greenhouse gas reduction targets? If yes, what are those targets? (Enter total metric tons and target date; 2 fields or leave blank)

Material Efficiency

Reduce waste and enhance quality

Scores will be automatically calculated based on your participation in the Packaging Scorecard in addition to the following:

5. If measured, please report total amount of solid waste generated from the facilities that produce your product(s) for Wal-Mart Inc for the most recent year measured. (Enter total lbs)

6. Have you set publicly available solid waste reduction targets? If yes, what are those targets? (Enter total lbs and target date; 2 fields or leave blank)

7. If measured, please report total water use from the facilities that produce your product(s) for Wal-Mart Inc for the most recent year measured. (Enter total gallons)

8. Have you set publically available water use reduction targets? If yes, what are those targets? (Enter total gallons and target date; 2 fields or leave blank)

Natural Resources

High quality, responsibly sourced raw materials

9. Have you established publicly available sustainability purchasing guidelines for your direct suppliers that address issues such as environmental compliance, employment practices, and product/ingredient safety? (Y/N)

10. Have you obtained 3rd party certifications for any of the products that you sell to Walmart? If so, from the list of certifications below, please select those for which any of your products are, or utilize materials that are, currently certified.

People and Community

Responsible and ethical production

11. Do you know the location of 100% of the facilities that produce your product(s)? (Y/N)

12. Before beginning a business relationship with a manufacturing facility, do you evaluate their quality of production and capacity for production? (Y/N)

13. Do you have a process for managing social compliance at the manufacturing level? (Y/N)

14. Do you work with your supply base to resolve issues found during social compliance evaluations and also document specific corrections and improvements? (Y/N)

15. Do you invest in community development activities in the markets you source from and/or operate within? (Y/N)