[caption id="attachment_608" align="alignnone" width="540" caption="Jason Hardy (left) and Justin Kemerling"]
The Match Factory idea began in 2002. We, Jason Hardy and Justin Kemerling, looked out on the landscape and saw the need to make things. This merged with our development as designers and continues to this day. The Match Factory became a place to put our attention, ideas and projects. Version 3, this blog site, is the beginning of our next steps.
The content that will make up this site is centered around the things that inspire us. But more importantly, it is a place for documenting our projects and discussing how they fit into our view of the world. Our changing world of the last decade and the thinking crucial to our role as designers converges on many levels; personal, professional, cultural, political. It is manifested here. A pathway from what is now to what could be tomorrow, consider this a philosophical collection of what we think it means to be a designer.
We both work the day to day as designers, but each have our own individual focus and intentions.
Meet Jason Hardy.
Goals: Story-telling, using art/design to contribute to our collective culture.
"What is there to say really. I guess I got into design because I like telling stories, and design felt like another way of doing that. As a younger man I studied journalism and intended to become a writer, though in the back of my mind something never felt quite right about that (though I still miss it). I graduated with a degree in Journalism and promptly found a job as a graphic designer. Go figure. Over the years I have found design to be both a way to make a living and a vehicle for personal expression, though those two things are sometimes mutually exclusive. I am very interested in the line between art and design (and whether or not that even matters). Design as visual poetry, or is that art? Is it art if you use a computer to make it? Who cares? Should I care? That kind of stuff. I am most attracted to making work that is evocative, emotionally resonate, entertaining, useful or just plain beautiful. At the end of the day I'm an average conflicted 32 year old American man who makes things to look at, play with, learn from or ignore. Though in the end, I hope that my work contributes to our collective culture.
I am currently an associate creative director for a digital agency (Odopod
) in San Francisco. I am also a freelance designer for The Criterion Collection
, who are located in New York. That being said, I am a proud Nebraskan and believe in the greatness and beauty of the American Middle-West. Onward."
Meet Justin Kemerling.
Focus: Community Activist Design.
"I consider myself a collaborator, community activist and midwest. I turned 30 last year. I'm a citizen, advocate, progressive, cloudy optimist, writer, thinker, screenprinter, lover and designer. And I have a really hard time deciding what to do at any given moment. So design has worked out well for me so far, as I get to explore a lot of different areas of our society. The types of projects I really get into explore our visual culture and our ability to create a common goal for a greater good. The work I'm most proud of focuses on the specifics of a place; picking a side, and giving image, clarity and distinction to specific causes. Whether dealing with social justice, peace issues, sustainability and climate action, student organizing, or art culture, the thinking is to design positively and make it beautiful. Really though, consider me an extremely interested party in how America exists in the world, what it means to be a global citizen today and the responsibilities that come along with that. I'm just trying to make sense of it all just like everyone else. Through design and design thinking I see more and more opportunities for people to make a difference where we live and to be active participants in our changing culture."
Moving forward, we both see our world changing in profound ways. Change itself is a process. Consider this part of our process of continuing to look out on the landscape and use design to participate in that change.