Bård Edlund designs and animates for clients worldwide through EDLUNDART,

a multidisciplinary studio in NYC.

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Dot Dot Dot is a news and entertainment company devoted to tech and humanity, founded by veteran technology reporter Laurie Segall. To help launch Laurie's podcast First Contact, hosted by iHeartRadio, EDLUNDART delivered colorful, animated portraits of the influential figures in tech interviewed on the show.

The people appearing in the video above are Es Lee (data scientist and founder of Mei), Yancey Strickler (co-founder and former CEO of Kickstarter), Jasmine Takanikos (founder of BrandHuman and principal at Candor Branding), Adam Mosseri (CEO of Instagram), Sam Altman (CEO of OpenAI and former President of Y Combinator) Aza Raskin (co-founder of the Center for Humane Technology), and Yaël Eisenstat (former global head of elections integrity operations at Facebook, former CIA analyst, and national security adviser).

My original thought when approaching this portrait series was to construct faces out of dots in some artful way, but after a few experiments in that direction during a brief development process, it all felt a bit too mechanical for a podcast and media company focused on humanity even more than technology.

I ended up pursuing a more drawn feel, but leveraging the bold colors and simple dots logo that had already been created and established as part of Dot Dot Dot's style guide. I framed the recurring elements of the animation in such a way that the widescreen version can be cropped to become a square that works beautifully on Instagram as well.

This project lives on both my animation and design page, though it should really live on an illustration page. My degree is in illustration, and I started out as an illustrator, but that's not really been the focus of my work in recent years — so it's been a really fun challenge and opportunity to return to pure illustration with portraiture, of all things. I love taking on assignments and commissions that aren't only based on what I've done in the past, when clients show faith that I can contribute something valuable even in an area I don't tout as a specialty. Challenges like this allow me to grow, and continue to expand my capabilities!