Volume One

  1. Personal Archives
  2. Finding Footing
  3. Lone Traveler
  4. Pod Rotations
  5. Communal Material

My Tools

  1. The Magic Boxes︎︎︎
  2. Federico
  3. Image Index


Lasso is a digital zine that compiles a selection of my graduate work over a six-month period as I explore “place,” collective practices, and personal tools in the field of graphic design. 


Personal Archives

June 2021

My personal archive can technically be traced back to my first forays into digital art of the 1990’s with my first endeavors saved within a collection of floppy discs. When inspiration would strike, the means of my expression was the on computer or in books I made out of the computer paper that sat at arm’s length. All of this art and making took place in the very basement where I have been working from this past year—a choice in place to be closer to my family during a pandemic. Looking back into my personal archive starts to morph into tracking my relationship to design and my family’s own achievement of making it in America. My mind and surroundings are filled with a similar inventory found at Staples or OfficeMax, carrying the tools that help people design a professional environment. The office is an add-on feature to our coveted home and serves as its own metaphor for keeping our family afloat.

Working from my childhood home fills me with nostalgia. My enthusiasm for the digital tools I discovered on my dad’s computer in the mid-90s helped shape my identity into the declaration that I could be a “designer.”  The title itself is an evolution of what was made possible for an acceptable livelihood. Returning to my dad’s desk as an adult, whose filing draws are heavy with records of our family’s existence, I wonder how his life could have been different if the “design” that I learned of was available to him in his transformative years. I reflect on how my grandfather used his home and yard as his canvas during the hours when he wasn’t working as a custodian at the local highschool, or drinking them away with friends at the local bar. He set forth a standard in finding a daily practice for personal, creative expression.

With a nod to my lineage, my established behaviors are to prioritize the delivery of good work, stay employed and knowledgeable in my craft, and know that Staples and Home Depot will probably have everything I need to be prepared for new endeavors. I have turned myself into my learned concept of what a graphic designer is, sacrificing the parts of myself that may not fit within the role. The more I begin to understand the world around me, and beyond the cultures that I’m familiar with, the more I must dig into my files to better understand what my tools have been all along and which of those can evolve with me. The old parts of myself that I have stored away—drawings, letters, and other forms of expression—all support my need to relate to others. They show me how my skills have grown according to how I’ve been trained or how I’ve learned to make things that I think others might like. The act of archiving becomes its own index to track growth, helping me to evaluate how far I’ve come for as long as I remember look back once in awhile.