PDQuin :: Design

I build vessels to carry words and images to an audience.

    • Using agile, results-oriented methodology, I engage teams and stake-holders to define the parameters of success.
    • Building a vocabulary of signs, images and ideas, my work gives each story its unique universe of meaning.
    • Placing each communication within a context of vulnerabilty, my designs help your audience adopt, nurture and promote your message.

I stand on the shoulders of giants.

  • As a book designer, I trained with Jerry Dadds at the Baltimore Museum of Art, Robert Ishi at W.H. Freeman & Co and Hermann Zapf at the Rochester Institute of Technology.
  • As a production manager, I learned from generations of type imaging and printing systems innovators, from inventors of the first phototypes to creators of the first virtual compositor.
  • As a content creator, I worked with engineers and programmers to produce a new class of technical documentation — the computer manual — and to create early on-line content libraries.

As I mastered technique, I shared my design and production skills.

  • I brought the first book design courses to Artists in Print, helping illustrators, production artists and typographers learn the arts of organized design.
  • Before colleges offered book design, I presented a professional course, opening new careers for book professionals across the industry.
  • I am now beginning courses in coding for designers to help anyone learn front-end coding and how to design, build and maintain a website.

For you, whatever your commmunication need, I offer an unparalleled breadth of experience.

  • With an exoskeleton of logical structure to carry the intellectual burden of your information and your message.
  • With the flexibility of goal-oriented UX, UI and UU attitudes to get the story across to your target personae.
  • With a firm grasp of brand identity to establish a solid niche in the landscape of ideas.
  • With judicious content marketing programs to give value, attract loyalty and show depth of understanding.

Let's design your opus.
A broadside, a slide show, a campaign, a corporate image, a website. Give me a call.

My serendipitous muse of the Eurasian steppe
  Blue Detroit and Manlio's poem on my wall

  Design is a window, not a mirror.

  The best book makes you happy
  — a meaningful experience from the first page.
  The best website does what you want it to do
  — without your having to consider how it's done.
  The best writing makes you want to sing and laugh.

  I can't always get there
  —but that doesn't stop me trying.

I've been learning coding thanks to dozens of people who share their skills through SF Meetups and other groups.

Robert Nealan
, of Designers Who Code, first gave me hope, and the tools, to begin coding.

The enthusiasts at HTML5 opened my eyes to new possibilities and keep me up on new tools.

My long-time colleague and alternative media mentor Donna Kelley continues to hold my hand on the technical side as she pulls me into new ventures.

[Who said the spirit of 'Frisco is fading?]

I have been fortunate to study with masters of traditional design.

Typography with Hermann Zapf at RIT, 1981

Landscape design with Lawrence Halperin at UC Extension, 1972

Print design with Jerry Dadds in Baltimore, 1965

Urban design with Daniel Stanton at the Baltimore Dept of City Planning, 1964

Art history with Phoebe Stanton at Johns Hopkins, 1962-4

Many in my community continue to offer essential encouragement and inspiration.

Kawandeep Virdee at Whichlight has opened up to me a community of local artists and coders, both at SF TechPoetics and Spotlight gatherings.

Setting the bar high, the talks arranged by Joe Robinson, Max Scholten and Michelle Morrison at Designers and Geeks has kept me asking more of myself – and others.

I would be remiss not to mention my family.
The designer Vince Blaskovich, whose meticulous and practical purse artistry fills me with joy – and reminds me that whatever I do it has to do something for the user.
The designer and coder Quin Kennedy, whose voyages to the outer limits – and beyond – keep calling us all to make our new world happen.

Eames chair parts

Websites + computer programs
2017 :: This PDQuin website
2013 :: Bullet Bio, website for a cancer-fighting start-up :: Design, illustrate, edit [since redesigned]
2011 :: AAR Online, the website for the Association of Author's Representatives, a literary and dramatic agents group :: Edit + produce [since redesigned]
2010 :: HIV over 50, a website for the National Association on HIV over Fifty :: Design, write, produce [organization taken over by NEAETC]
1992 :: PenPoint Quickstart for handwriting operating system, GO Corp.
1991 :: Database-direct design matrix, architectural and user interface references for PenPoint, GO Corp.
1988 :: Paradox 2.0 manual series, Ansa Software
1988 :: Truescan User's Guide, Calera
1985 :: Consult on menu structure in Ventura Publisher, the first book design and layout program, beta-test 1986
1978 :: Ad-hoc committee on the classification of typefaces for use across multiple imaging devices, Xerox PARC

Found objects on desk

1996 :: Proprietary design system for B-list books and supplements, Addison-Wesley
1990 :: From a Breton Garden, Araldo, Aris Books/Addison-Wesley :: Design + art direct
1984 :: First commercial use of laser printer to create type masters for textbooks, QR Inc
1984 :: Stairway Walks in San Francisco, Bakalinsky, Lexikos :: Produced at QR
1982 :: First edition layouts and production, Kapit & Elson's Anatomy Coloring Book
1979 :: The Child's Peninsula, Phillips, Perseverance Press :: Design, art direct, produce
1968 :: Offset layout from pasted-up boards, Gilluly Waters & Woodford, Geology, W.H. Freeman & Co, collaboration

Kennedy home altar for travelling priest

2009 :: Quininger, student writings, Fromm Institute USF :: Design + produce
2008 :: Oxford Messenger Bag, hangtags, publicity materials, silkscreen design, for Vincie / MTTS'08
1998 :: Calendars and meditations, JFCS :: Design, write, produce
1997 :: Catalog of recordings, Chanticleer :: Design + produce
1994 :: The Private Concert Series, programs and invitations, Kronos Quartet :: live scans, design, produce
1991 :: Xerox DocuTech Publishing System, SF test run, Tales from the World of Kindergarten :: System-typeset texts, scan drawings, paginate, print electronically
1988 :: Workshop leader's guide, Preparing for the Drug (Free) Years, Catalano/Hawkins, Developmental Research
1983 :: Silkscreen horticultural cards, Galeria de la Raza
1980 :: Call for Entries, Bookbuilders West Book Show
1979 :: Book show catalogue, Bookbuilders West
1966 :: Photostrip composition to offset, monthly calendar, The Baltimore Museum of Art
1966 :: Promotional ephemera, Williams & Wilkins :: Write, design, produce
1965 :: Invitations, greeting cards, catalogs, calendars, The Baltimore Museum of Art :: Write, design, produce

My serendipitous muse of the Eurasian steppe
  A place for everything

  Order is in relationship, not location.

  The trick is to make obvious
  the inherent logic of sets of objects or data.

  Look at sources, uses, derivations, dependencies.
  A project becomes an opera, an adventure, a music video, a catalog.
  In any case, transparent. Useful.
  Capable of rebirth in each new generation.


I organise, not just books, websites and documents but also places, programs and production. An awareness of relationships and dependencies is among my greatest talents. I make and keep schedules and budgets, set up filing systems, structure websites.

Eames chair parts

Community facilitation and corporate ID
2012, 2011, 2009 :: Facilitator, Staff planning retreat, AcroSports
2010 :: Browser-based, thumb-drive employee manual with links to references and resources, Therapy stores
2009 :: Eldersexual campaign, Merck :: Produce brochures, coorddinate sponsors, launch website
2008 :: Corporate ID, logo, Vincie
2007 :: Corporate ID, website launch, New England Association on Hiv Over Fifty
2003 :: Capital plan, AcroSports
2002 :: Corporate ID, website launch, AcroSports
2001 :: Corporate ID, National Association on Hiv Over Fifty
2001 :: Site development AcroSports :: Plans + excecution
1998 :: Board handbook and 5-year plan, AcroSports
1998 :: Equipment design, safety procedures and maintenance standards, AcroSports
1997 :: Development on Stanyan Street, a community presentation for the SF Board of Supervisors, HANC
1997 :: Employee handbook, HR procedures, job descriptions, AcroSports
1963 :: San José Master Plan, City Planning Department :: Write, map, design, produce

Found objects on desk

Residential work
2013-14 :: Re-organisation of collections and storage, Mt. Davidson
2007-8 :: Re-organization of collections and memoirs, preparation of house for sale, Sutro Forest
2002 :: Staging, Parnassus Ave condo [sparked bidding war]

Kennedy home altar for travelling priest

Publication production
1989 :: Fundamentals of Nursing, Kozier, Erb &Bufalino, Addison-Wesley :: Design + produce
1989 :: Theories of Personality, Ryckman, Brooks/Cole :: Design, art direct, produce
1988 :: Care Planning Pocket Guide, Lederer et al, Addison-Wesley :: Design + produce
1988 :: MP286 Laptop Sales Manual, Mitsubishi :: Design + produce
1987 :: Hands-On AppleWorks, Luehrmann & Peckham, Computer Literacy :: Design + produce
1987 :: Out of Our Kitchen Closets, Moskowitz (Ed.), Congregation Sha'ar Zahav :: Design + produce
1984 :: Prisoners of the Deep, Andersen, Harper & Row :: Design, art direct, produce
1984 :: Stairway Walks in San Francisco, Bakalinsky, Lexikos :: Design + produce
1981 :: Song of Heyoehkah, Storm, Harper & Row :: Design, art direct, produce
1967-73 :: Production department supervisor, set up procedures & forms, hired & trained staff, oversaw complete list, W.H. Freeman & Co.