A Bedtime Story by

Studio Jethro

The Form that Follows Chaos

You know, that if you throw everything out, and lose all rules, and stop trying to make anything happen on any level … other stuff starts to happen.”

—Jerry Garcia
Speaking on the Acid Tests

PROLOGUE

More than once in my life I’ve found myself having to throw everything out, in a sense, losing all rules and beginning over. And trying to make anything happen on any level is difficult, if not impossible at these moments in time. The sheer notion of constructing new rules, building new forms, finding new meaning, all of it initially seems overwhelming and entirely out of reach.

But I’ve discovered, like the quote, if I try not to think too hard about it, if I step away from all the over-analysis and the left side of my brain and just do, over time other stuff really does start to happen, subtly revealing itself in a variety of ways, and in places I might never thought possible. Life is inevitable. It changes, it morphs, it takes on disguises you might not recognize at first. But ultimately you see it — the form that follows chaos.

I started Studio Jethro in the Fall of 2018 in the midst of one of these moments where chaos reigned. I had recently lost my stepfather earlier in the year, probably my best friend in life and closest confidant. And I had just left a job that I loved at a firm that I had spent nearly a dozen years working for — a place from which I honestly expected to retire. I started Studio Jethro because, in the end, I had no choice. I enjoy working too much. I enjoy doing. I enjoy the act of designing and creating things that are meaningful. And even those things that aren’t so meaningful, I can find joy in them too.

To a certain degree, both in life and in design, I’ve come to rely on this idea of the form that follows chaos, enjoying a sort of comfort in the knowledge that order will come, it will resolve itself regardless, reëstablishing that familiar framework upon which I hang so many of my proverbial hats. The new structure is always different, but only slightly. It’s not better or worse, but it’s stronger than before, because it has to be.

—Jeffrey Scott Miller
Owner & Designer, Studio Jethro

 

Are you asleep yet? If you’d like to read more about me, the following two links provide an overview of my professional experience in two acts:

Prologue
ACT I
ACT II

Building a Design Company
In 1997 I would help found Doc Milo Productions, a boutique stationery design company based in the Old City section of Philadelphia …
Read More

My Life in the A/E Trenches
For more than half of my 25 years working as a designer, I’ve spent the bulk of my time working for firms in the Architectural industry … Read More

The Form that Follows Chaos

You know, that if you throw everything out, and lose all rules, and stop trying to make anything happen on any level … other stuff starts to happen.”

—Jerry Garcia
Speaking on the Acid Tests

PROLOGUE

More than once in my life I’ve found myself having to throw everything out, in a sense, losing all rules and beginning over. And trying to make anything happen on any level is difficult, if not impossible at these moments in time. The sheer notion of constructing new rules, building new forms, finding new meaning, all of it initially seems overwhelming and entirely out of reach.

But I’ve discovered, like the quote, if I try not to think too hard about it, if I step away from all the over-analysis and the left side of my brain and just do, over time other stuff really does start to happen, subtly revealing itself in a variety of ways, and in places I might never thought possible. Life is inevitable. It changes, it morphs, it takes on disguises you might not recognize at first. But ultimately you see it — the form that follows chaos.

I started Studio Jethro in the Fall of 2018 in the midst of one of these moments where chaos reigned. I had recently lost my stepfather earlier in the year, probably my best friend in life and closest confidant. And I had just left a job that I loved at a firm that I had spent nearly a dozen years working for — a place from which I honestly expected to retire. I started Studio Jethro because, in the end, I had no choice. I enjoy working too much. I enjoy doing. I enjoy the act of designing and creating things that are meaningful. And even those things that aren’t so meaningful, I can find joy in them too.

To a certain degree, both in life and in design, I’ve come to rely on this idea of the form that follows chaos, enjoying a sort of comfort in the knowledge that order will come, it will resolve itself regardless, reëstablishing that familiar framework upon which I hang so many of my proverbial hats. The new structure is always different, but only slightly. It’s not better or worse, but it’s stronger than before, because it has to be.

—Jeffrey Scott Miller
Owner & Designer, Studio Jethro

 

Are you asleep yet? If you’d like to read more about me, the following two links provide an overview of my professional experience in two acts:

ACT I
ACT II

Building a Design Company
In 1997 I would help found Doc Milo Productions, a boutique stationery design company based in the Old City section of Philadelphia …
Read More

My Life in the A/E Trenches
For more than half of my 25 years working as a designer, I’ve spent the bulk of my time working for firms in the Architectural industry … Read More

I'm good at what I do.

That’s not a prideful boast. But it is something that every one of the closest people in my life have continued to tell me I should get comfortable saying. So I’m saying it here.

I'd rather be working.

I’m a workaholic. I came to terms with that fact back when I was in college. It gets me in trouble sometimes in my personal life. But I’ve never had a client or employer complain about it.

I don't sleep much.

I used to think sleep was for the birds, a thing to do when I was dead. Now I’d love to sleep, but couldn’t find it, even if you paid me. So I generally tend to work instead. Surprise.

  • I'm Good at What I Do

    That’s not a prideful boast. But it is something that every one of the closest people in my life have continued to tell me I should get comfortable saying. So I’m saying it here.

  • I'd Rather Be Working

    I’m a workaholic. I came to terms with that fact back when I was in college. It gets me in trouble sometimes in my personal life. But I’ve never had a client or employer complain about it.

  • I Don't Sleep Much

    I used to think sleep was for the birds, a thing to do when I was dead. Now I’d love to sleep, but couldn’t find it, even if you paid me. So I generally tend to work instead. Surprise.

Software Experience

Showing relative competency and comfort level

The true Adobe expert in the office. Expert photographer, with extensive knowledge of cameras and their operations. Extremely knowledgeable about printing processes and mechanical characteristics of various printers, including large format. Adept at color manipulation and bridging the gap between the video screen and printed page. Expert web developer, with broad WordPress knowledge and ability to manipulate and customize complex themes. At almost any other design office, a person with these skill sets would be called at minimum ‘Art Director.’ Unfortunately, Jeff’s ability to contribute to K&A’s image and productivity is hamstrung by being subjected to extremely poor management, over which he has no control. A shame really.”

Robert Carlson
Director of IT, Kitchen & Associates

Software Experience

Showing relative competency and comfort level

The true Adobe expert in the office. Expert photographer, with extensive knowledge of cameras and their operations. Extremely knowledgeable about printing processes and mechanical characteristics of various printers, including large format. Adept at color manipulation and bridging the gap between the video screen and printed page. Expert web developer, with broad WordPress knowledge and ability to manipulate and customize complex themes. At almost any other design office, a person with these skill sets would be called at minimum ‘Art Director.’ Unfortunately, Jeff’s ability to contribute to K&A’s image and productivity is hamstrung by being subjected to extremely poor management, over which he has no control. A shame really.”

Robert Carlson
Director of IT, Kitchen & Associates

Audio + Visual

This is mainly a hobby for me
Apple Final Cut X80%
Apple Logic X85%

Business + Office

I just threw up in my mouth a little bit
Microsoft Excel80%
Microsoft Word90%
OpenOffice75%
Deltek Vision ERP70%

Design + Photography

For both print and web
Adobe InDesign CC95%
Adobe Illustrator CC80%
Adobe Lightroom CC85%
Adobe Photoshop CC80%
Adobe Acrobat Pro DC90%
CorelDRAW!75%
DxO (Previously Nik)85%
Extensis Suitcase Fusion90%

Presentation + Slideshow

I'm not a huge fan of these
Apple Keynote90%
Microsoft PowerPoint80%

Web Development

I'm not a programmer
Adobe Dreamweaver CC80%
CSS, HTML + HTML585%
WordPress95%
Javascript + PHPI can edit the code

Audio + Visual

This is mainly a hobby for me
Apple Final Cut X80%
Apple Logic X85%

Business + Office

I just threw up in my mouth a little bit
Microsoft Excel80%
Microsoft Word90%
OpenOffice75%
Deltek Vision ERP70%

Design + Photography

For both print and web
Adobe InDesign CC95%
Adobe Illustrator CC80%
Adobe Lightroom CC85%
Adobe Photoshop CC80%
Adobe Acrobat Pro DC90%
CorelDRAW!75%
DxO (Previously Nik)85%
Extensis Suitcase Fusion90%

Presentation + Slideshow

I'm not a huge fan of these
Apple Keynote90%
Microsoft PowerPoint80%

Web Development

I'm not a programmer
Adobe Dreamweaver CC80%
CSS, HTML + HTML585%
WordPress95%
Javascript + PHPI can edit the code

Adobe CC Design Applications

Showing relative time spent with primary applications

Office & Productivity Applications

Showing relative time spent with primary applications

Web Applications

Showing relative time spent with primary applications

Output Devices

Showing relative experience with primary platforms

Adobe CC Design Applications

Showing relative time spent with primary applications

Office & Productivity Applications

Showing relative time spent with primary applications

Web Applications

Showing relative time spent with primary applications

Output Devices

Showing relative experience with primary platforms