A GOOD DAY IN MANHATTAN
Good morning. It’s now 2 a.m. and I’m eager to get to bed, but I’m still going to write a little account of my day—so that I can refer back to this next time I have a crisis of confidence or just feel generally down.
A few weeks ago I was feeling seriously overwhelmed with work and decided to book a week in New York, just to get the hell out of Dodge for a few days. Somehow my home vacations never pan out at all. I can’t resist the lure of the computer and my vacation space is eerily similar to my work space.
Besides, after unleashing the new book (much alluded to in earlier posts) on Chronicle Books in San Francisco last Thursday, I thought I’d test the waters with a few New York publishers, too.
I spent most of my Saturday flight from L.A. and all of my Sunday editing the audio file of Russell and Arthur reading through the monster book. (Remember?) Russell just put up a lovely post about the result on his blog. (Many thanks go to my friend John who flashified my Quicktime movie for web use.)
That brings us to today. I started the day by meeting Steven Heller at the New York Times. Steven is the author of every book on graphic design, as well as the art director of the Book Review section. He was kind enough to take a look at the monsters and, after a few minutes, got up to personally call two children’s book editors at major publishing houses on my behalf. He’s also thinking about suggesting an article on the new way of promoting indepenent movies, based on the book I designed for Tarsem’s new film. Not a bad way to begin the day.
From there I went down to the eighth floor to say Hello to the art director of my beloved NYT Magazine. He, too, was very kind to me. To my great surprise he told me that he liked a poster I had done three years ago—the bar chart poster. Who knew he had seen it, let alone that he’d remember it after all this time? I liked the man immediately.
Of course, I had come bearing gifts. Among other goodies, I pulled out a paperback copy of my first book. “Oh, I bought that when it came out. It’s on the shelf right over here.” Good man! And he remembered American Photography 17, too. Who knew? Who knew? I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a future illustration assignment. What can I tell you? I have a New York Times fetish.
After that, back to the apartment to plan the next few days. Two more publishers came through for meetings, and I’m having lunch with the excellent Christoph Niemann, one of the most consistently smart and funny illustrators out there. (He’s one of the Germans I like.)
After all that I finally got to do what I’ve been craving for weeks: wander aimlessly around Manhattan, admiring the fashions, being calmed by the street noise, and enjoying the ability to keep walking for hours without running out of new things to look at. Late in the afternoon good fortune had me run into a NUTS 4 NUTS stand and I got myself a bag of warm honey roasted almonds—in and of itself a good reason for me to come to New York.
After a quick drink with an old friend from my days working with Modernista! I finally made it home for a quick change of clothes, a call to PV, and a late dinner in the Village.
So, yes, altogether not a bad day in Manhattan. Lets see what happens tomorrow. Stay tuned. For now, please remember that even in Eastern Daylight Time 344 LOVES YOU