Blog

Oregon's Transportation Package

Feature Photo Credit: Oregon Department of Transportation Last month, Oregon’s legislature passed a $5.3-billion transportation bill in an effort to keep up with a growing population and increasingly inadequate infrastructure. As Portland continues to rise on the list of most infuriating cities to drive in, efforts to make our roadways more efficient have sparked intense […]

3D Printed Evidence
Posted by on September 21, 2017
Posted in: DetailViz, legal, SceneViz

In January 2015, the show NCIS: LA featured 3D printing in its episode “In the Line of Duty”. The storyline followed the team as they investigated an attempt on the life of the American ambassador to Tunisia. The Tunisian crime scene was still “hot” and unsafe (and was 6000+ miles away), so the team instead […]

Morrison Bridge Update
Posted by on August 17, 2017
Posted in: built projects, construction, events, legal, transportation

Last night I walked down two flights of stairs into “the pit” of the Morrison Bridge. As part of a tour organized by WTS Portland, I got to see the current state of construction first hand, including the counterweight mechanism below the bridge. It’s not the first time I’ve been “down below”. Back in 2014, […]

Mock Jury at FORTE
Posted by on August 16, 2017
Posted in: events, legal, tips and tricks, Uncategorized

Recently I had the chance to participate in a mock jury exercise at FORTE. Trial attorneys from all over the country came to hone their opening statement presentation skills. FORTE focuses on non-verbal communication (our fave), and workshops, while designed for attorneys, include tips that are generally helpful to everyone in attendance. The subject matter for […]

Design Thinking, in Practice
Posted by on July 10, 2017
Posted in: construction, legal, product, projects, transportation

Last month we wrote about “design thinking,” an old idea that has found new popularity in break rooms and board rooms of companies from many disciplines. The theory calls for the use of visual tools and prototypes to engage a broad range of stakeholders in all stages of the design process. Here are some examples […]

Mapillary Action

Recently I heard about Mapillary, an open-source app that lets anyone with a camera and an internet connection contribute to a database of street view images from around the world. We use Google’s street view all the time to create 3D models of remote locations, so I was curious to see what Mapillary has to offer. […]

The Threshold of Detectability

Recently our studio got a copy of Eyal Weizman’s book, Forensic Architecture: Violence at the Threshold of Detectability. Weizman is the founder of Forensic Architecture, a research agency based in London and founded in 2011. They use a combination of forensic and architectural methods to investigate war crimes, assassinations, and other human rights abuses where there have been attempts […]

Design Thinking, in Theory
Posted by on June 12, 2017
Posted in: creative community, graphic design, inspiration

One of our biggest challenges at Fat Pencil Studio is simply explaining what we do. It’s not so hard to show off what we make: 3d models, diagrams, animations, maps, infographics, to name a few. However, these things are just the end result of a design process that we use to create visual stories. That […]

Out and About 2017
Posted by on June 8, 2017
Posted in: conferences, legal, presentations, transportation

Fat Pencil Studio started attending summer conventions with the Oregon Trial Lawyers (OTLA) in 2011 and the Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers (OCDLA) in 2012. Besides being a good excuse to visit central Oregon, these meetings are a great way to show off what we do in person. If you are planning to attend one of […]

Resistance GIS
Posted by on June 2, 2017
Posted in: activism, conferences, data visualization, events, GIS, mapping

On May 20th, one of Portland’s first sunny Saturdays the year, 200 people elected to stay inside and talk about maps. Maps they love and hate, maps they made themselves or dreamed of making, how we make maps and why we make maps. This was the first-ever Resistance GIS Conference, held in a dim auditorium […]