STRANGE MAGIC The Zack Rosen Industries Visual Manifesto

Five Minute Self Portrait: Ink on Paper

About Me:

Washington DC journalist turned Toronto emigrant. I have recently learned how to draw. I may be reached at

Analogue Baby Yeah!

Statement of Intent:

I have worked in media since 2006 - first as Arts Reporter at a print newspaper, then as Editor-in-Chief of an internationally lauded “alt-queer” blog, now as a Freelance Media Producer trafficking in journalistic and commercial written content, video features, and community-focused nightlife events.

I believe that media is the single most effective tool for introducing a new idea, service or product to diverse populations through otherwise daunting reaches of time or space. To that end, I have completed the G108 Art and Design Foundation Program at George Brown College. I realized that my ability to speak the language of media was hampered by my unfamiliarity with the visual vocabulary, so I expanded my skill base.

I deliver full-service, one-stop-shopping, media consultation. A brand, individual or institution seeking to raise awareness of themselves throughout the larger local or empirical population will find, with my help, a full range of skills, ideas and talented contract employees that can bring your best work an untold number of fresh eyes.

I prioritize analogue design over digital - I believe it carries more warmth and individuality, and as such can be first to reach a potential customer’s eye over the endless fray of flawless Adobe graphics. I value vitality, motion and color in my work. I seek to assist clients connected to the arts - visual, musical, performance and other - who view iconoclasticism and dynamic forward motion as essential components of a successful campaign.

"Xanadu, Fillory, Avalon, Gilead." (Union Station light study; pencil crayon on Canson mi-tienties paper.)

Artist's Philosophy:

I believe people have become disconnected from nature, and are becoming sick. The world has lost something - too many straight lines and rigid constructs have taken the place of authentic human expression. I aim to put the artist's two hand's back into the creative process - circumvent the shortcuts of computers and crowdsourced solutions to create design that breeds a sense of excitement and possibility in the individual viewer.

I speak in expressive lines, loud colors, fish tanks and live plants.

Spider Plant Spider-Planter: (Dollar Store Pet Bowl, Wire, Pebbles, Live Plant)
"Four Aquariums" home installation, 2014. Apologies for poor picture quality.


"Fourth of July." (Mixed media on hot press board)

My art is inspired by music - I enjoy translating the aural experience of a favorite song into visuals. The above is an abstract take on Galaxie 500's 1990 single "Fourth of July" and its opening declaration of "I wrote a poem on a dog biscuit/and your dog refused to look at it."

I found that "Fourth of July" met my longtime goal of utilizing a primary color palette without the finished work looking garish or juvenile.

"No Nation," Live Concert Illustration. (PrismaColor Marker on Paper.)

I'm Quite Gay

I am gay and like designing imagery that will reach a queer audience. This poster was born of an assignment to depict on on-campus issue for our "G108" Program at "George Brown College." I decided to use some word play to illuminate the lack of queer-gathering spaces in the design building.

"GBC" (Prismacolor Marker on Canvas Paper." )

My Creative Process

I like to sit down with a marker and a stack of paper - both drawing and tracing - and scrawl a design a thousand times until I get it perfect. I find this allows for the best marriage of spontaneity and refinement.

The below grid documents the steps I took to turn my much-missed companion hedgehog Patty Prickly (RIP) into a clean, sharp icon drawing. The finished product is tamed without being domesticated - like Patty herself.

Love you Patty!


As you may have gathered, I find that animal-focused design can often express and reflect the world we live in better than depictions of people. I created these two pieces the day after Donald Trump was elected president, using my old hound dog Neko to stand in for the fear I felt at being separated from my loved ones in America due to the decisions of a leader they did not elect.

"Tough but Sweet." (Prismacolor Marker on Hot Press Board)
"We Don't Need." (Mixed Media on Hot Press Board.)

Quotes to Live By

Hey, if you've made it this far enjoy some words of wisdom from a few of my idols.

"...A softly spoken tiger in a sea of pussycats." (Luna, "The Rustler.")

"Love is the Province of The Brave." (TV on the Radio, "Province")

"...If you study the logistics and heuristics of the mystics you will find that their minds rarely move in a line. So it's much more realistic to abandon such ballistics and resign to be trapped on a leaf in a vine." (Brian Eno, "Backwater.")

Created By
zack rosen


Zack Rosen

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