Translation Expanded: Japanese/English

Translation Expanded: Japanese/English is a letterform and language exploration created by Clay Cooper of the BFA Graphic Design Program at CSULB. It attempts to show how the Japanese language works and how it differs from English.

Japanese is uses three different scripts to make up the written language: Kanji (Chinese characters), Hiragana (modified Chinese characters), and Katakana (derived from Kanji, but used for translating phonetics from other languages).

The Japanese syntax order is Subject, Object, Verb. English is Subject, Verb, Object.

The web presence allows the viewer to remove and replace the scripts my clicking buttons to the right. Go there now.


Photos of the prints showing all Japanese scripts together (far left) and separated (three on right).


Showcased at Michael Osborne Design in San Francisco.

The interactive web presence is really the best way to understand how the scripts work together. Check it out!

Union Weekly: The Gauntlet: 2010: Editors vs. Staff

The Gauntlet 2010:  Editors vs. Staff
Volume 67
Issue 05
Sept 27 2010

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This was one of our more fun and silly issues, where a staff member suggested a tournament of sorts, between the editors and the staff. This tournament, he called The Gauntlet, and he already had all the rules and events! So basically, he made it up in High school in the middle of no where in Northern California, so the events were:
Strength: Weight Toss
Endurance: Wall Sit
Speed: Soda Chug
Creativity: Poems (Subway)
Brain Capacity: Memorization
Pissing Contest: Yes, we did.

If anything, read it for the Subway Haikus, they’re pretty good.

Anyway, design was inspired or just completely ripped off from the old Pee Chee folders in the 80s. Our Head Illustrator, Jeff Chang, did all the fantastic illustration, we were lucky he was experimenting with gestural drawing at the time! Check out his freaking website!!

Million Trees NYC – One Show Campaign

million trees nyc atlas admillion trees nyc bronze bull admillion trees nyc liberty ad

I was asked to help a team of copy writers, attending The Bookshop advertising school in LA, art direct a campaign for The One Show competition for Million Trees NYC. After failing at illustrating the campaign myself, I looked to a friend I knew could pull it off. My man Alex Gardner whipped these up in just two days, what a hero!

Organization: Million Trees NYC (One Show Competition)
Copy: Even the toughest New Yorkers have limits on what they can weather. For a cleaner, greener, milder city – Trees get it done.

The Weather Channel – Print Ads

These are the advertisements (spreads) I turned in for our Art Direction assignment for The Weather Channel. The style and art direction was inspired by Cassius Coolidge, a late 19th century painter who’s most known for his series Dogs Playing Poker. The ads were rendered with a Wacom tablet in Photoshop using the original paintings as reference.

Company: The Weather Channel
Tagline: Get to know the elements.

Interpreting the Signified

Check out a Happening I just put on with a team in my graphic design class.

Union Weekly Cover – Rotting Education to the Core

Rotting Education to the Core
Volume 66
Issue 12
May 03 2010

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This week the Union attempts to tame the commotion of teacher lay-offs. Who’s most at risk and why? Plus a few personal stories from teachers in the district.

This cover art is a product of good old fashioned teamwork. The artists in the office got together to recreate the Union logo and headline in chalk. We found an open classroom and set up shop, the actual finished chalk image is about 4ft by 3ft. We initially tried to set up the angle of the table to meet perfectly with the perspective of the logo, but that proved impossible, especially because of focus issues; we wanted the apple to be the only fully focused item on the desk. Lastly, there was just not enough time for our fresh apple to get really moldy, so Photoshop to the rescue on that one.

Once again I could not have come close to pulling this off if it weren’t for Andrew Lee, our favorite Union photographer.

Super Mario Bros Wii Typeface font is here!


Hello! I’ve been diligently hacking away at this typeface for a few months now and it is finally available for download! I’m happy to say I’ve had quite a few requests since my initial post on the subject and if it weren’t for all of you I don’t think I would have ever gotten around to finishing this, so to everyone who has the desire to use this typeface, thank you!

Super Cayden's Party
One person in particular contacted me about using the font for his son’s birthday card, I sent him the illustrator file in the early stages and look what he did! —–>

Anyway, this being my first functional font, I must say it’s been a pretty neat, although arduous, process. I encourage anyone, experts to fans, to improve on this typeface in the open source manner. Wouldn’t it be nice to see an improved version on some random free font site one day? Yes, it would.

I used Illustrator to create the outlines and FontLab Studio to adjust and export as an Open Type File.

There is no lowercase, typing lowercase and uppercase will result in the same letter forms. The lowercase “i” can be found by typing the capital “I.” There are no numbers, yet.

If your still reading, stop, and start downloading, using, sharing, commenting, improving, and whatever else is awesome to you… aaaaaand your still reading.


Union Weekly Cover – The Ace of All Trades


The Ace of All Trades: Adam Carolla on Everything from Podcasting to Giving up on Your Dreams
Volume 66
Issue 05
March 01 2010

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Our very own James Kislingbury travels to Adam Carolla’s hide out in Pasadena and interviews the hell out of him. A real interview with Adam Carolla, for reals, and it’s seriously worth reading so check it out.

Our super photographer Andrew Lee traveled the full distance for a short but generous 5 minute photo session. I grabbed the photo with the nicest composition for a cover, threw the text on there in Neutra, one of my favorite typefaces that I haven’t been able to use, and put together a simple, fun, ribbon design. My goal when working with photos is to get the text to read without covering up too much of the photo, this style of design worked well for this cover and I got to have some fun weaving the ribbon behind and in front of the Ace himself.

Union Weekly Cover – High Anxiety

High Anxiety

High Anxiety: Medical Marijuana Takes Root in Long Beach
Volume 66
Issue 02
February 08 2010

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This issue’s feature focuses on the recent and prospective Long Beach County marijuana zoning laws, interesting and well told by one of our more impressive journalists, Matt Dupree. Read the article on our website!

The design throws a nod to Charles Burns, an American cartoonist, illustrator and film director, particularly to his portrait illustrations for The Believer. It is also the Union Weekly’s first “Meta Cover.”

Super special thanks to Andrew Lee for taking the photo for reference use, your awesome, also, super special thanks to James Kislingbury for drawing up the cartoony smoke, I really had trouble with that, and last and definitely not least (big guy), thank you Beef, for letting us use your beautiful face yet again.

New Super Mario Bros Wii Typeface font (alpha)


Here is the first version of the New Super Mario Bros Wii Tyepface. I recently got this game, it is plenty awesome, and so is the display type that was created for the game’s logo. I immediately noticed it and wanted it. I had this feeling that it may have already been replicated by a bigger fan than I, however, all I could find on the web was this guy’s post, informing me that not only does it not exist, but, there is at least one person out there who wouldn’t mind having a functional version of the typeface. So here is the first step, I will be refining it in the coming months and putting it together to be my first functional font! It will also be free to download here!