Whoa… you damn well can’t do that anymore!
This is what graphic design looks like
Dyslexie, A Different Kind of Beauty
Well, if it isn't the old typeface bait-and-switch
Seeking a full-time position in hurricane logo design
Today I am a Red Sox fan (did I just say that?!)

Author Archives: howard

MOCAtv | The Art Of Punk | Dead Kennedys + Winston Smith

dk-sketch

From MOCAtv:

On this episode of The Art of Punk we hit head on with the art behind the legendary Dead Kennedy’s. From the chaotic, surreal, madness, of collage mixed with political folly that blazed their LP’s and gig flyers; to the razor edge ultra simplistic four simple line DK symbol. In San Francisco we corner founding Dead Kennedy’s member Jello Biafra, and discuss his own warped inspiration for the many sleeves and posters created in the early days of the band. Back in Los Angeles we talk with pop surrealist artist Tim Biskup about how the DK’s affected and twisted his own young mind, and Steve Olson graces us with a few words of wisdom. Finally we meet up with master collage artist, and designer of the DK’s symbol, Winston Smith in his North Beach art studio, and talk about how he was drawn into the early Bay Area punk scene – and his long and creative artist relationship with the Dead Kennedy’s and Jello Biafra.

Finally, a brilliantly simple blueprint for professional sharing online

Via: The Pastry Box Project

Mediocre ideas, showing up, and persistence.

me3I don’t have much advice to give, but if I have any, it’s that little recipe.

Truly great ideas are rare. Jokers like us will probably never have one. That’s OK. We have mediocre ones all the time and they work just fine. I once had an idea to start a blog about CSS. I sucked at writing. I sucked at designing. The vibe at the time was that everything important about CSS had already been written. Nobody told me.

I didn’t just have the idea, I did it. That’s the showing up part. Hands on the keyboard, go. I barely knew what I was doing. I stumbled through even following simple walkthroughs on how to install the software. Executing your ideas is never overly comfortable.

Then never stop. Don’t get distracted by some other idea and prance away to that tomorrow. Keep doing it until you’ve done everything you set out to do and everyone and their mom knows it. I didn’t stop blogging when barely anyone read it for years. I didn’t stop when people told me I was dumb or wrong. I didn’t stop when redesigns were met with vitriol. I didn’t stop when faced with mountainous challenges like inexplicable server failure, legal trouble, and theft of the site itself.

Oh, plus, try not to be a dick. I’m convinced that helps.

This thought was written by Chris Coyier and first published on Saturday, 18 May 2013.

Inside the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s surprising baseball card collection

Via: ESPN:

Quick quiz: Where can you find the largest publicly available collection of baseball cards? If you said the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, give yourself a pat on the back. You’re right!

But here’s a trickier one: Where can you find the second-largest collection of baseball cards?

The answer, surprisingly enough, is the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Yes, really!

Here’s the back story: Long before the existence of baseball card conventions, memorabilia shops, eBay or chalky pink bubblegum, there was a guy named Jefferson Burdick. Burdick, who was born in 1900, was an electrician by trade. On the side, he was the most obsessive collector geek of his day, assembling history’s greatest collection of early American printed ephemera, including more than 30,000 baseball cards, some of them dating back to the 1880s. In those days, of course, baseball cards were mostly giveaways with tobacco products, and they didn’t yet have stats and other data on the back.

Anyway, as Burdick was moving into middle age, he began thinking about where he wanted his collection to end up. Baseball cards weren’t yet hot collectibles, so the idea that his cards might have commercial value never occurred to him. Instead, he proposed giving his collection to the Metropolitan Museum, which basically told him, “Sure, we’ll take it — as long as you catalog it and organize it first.” So Burdick spent years making daily trips to the Met, where he painstakingly put all his cards into albums. (continue to full article)

And much more about Jefferson Burdick here.

burdicks-grave

Meet the 621 parts of a 1964 Smith Corona typewriter

1964smithcorona-621

We are currently knee-deep in a trend of highly contrived (though admittedly, often visually attractive) “infographics”. And then here comes an idea so bold, so clear, so simple, and (dare I say) so obvious, that I feel like this may finally expose the absurdity of those over-designed monstrosities we currently categorize as informational graphic design.

Statement from Todd McLellan:

Things Come Apart is an expansion of the original Disassembly Series. This new set of images explores retro to modern daily items that have, are, or will be in our everyday lives. The book “Things Come Apart” published by Thames & Hudson will be available May.

And from Thames & Hudson:

Things Come Apart: A Teardown Manual for Modern Living

Welcome to Todd McLellan’s unique photographic vision of the material world: fifty design classics—arranged first by size and then by intricacy—are beautifully displayed, piece by piece, exploding in midair and dissected in real-time, frame-by-frame video stills.

This book makes visible the inner workings of some of the world’s most iconic designs. From SLR camera to mantel clock to espresso machine, from iPad to bicycle to grand piano, every single component of each object is revealed. These disassembled objects show that even the most intricate of modern technologies can be broken down and understood, while beautifully illustrating the quality and elegance of older designs. Stunning photography is interspersed with essays by notable figures from the worlds of restoration, DIY, and design innovation who discuss historical examples of teardowns, disassembly, and reverse-engineering.

Each photograph is itself a work of art and offers a reinterpretation of our familiar world. They connect people with the child-like joy of taking something apart to see how it works and will appeal to anyone with a curiosity about the material world.

Things Come Apart from Todd McLellan Motion/Stills Inc. on Vimeo.

Patti Smith: Advice to the young

Patti Smith: Advice to the young from Louisiana Channel on Vimeo.

“Build a good name”, rock poet Patti Smith advises the young. “Life is like a roller coaster, it is going to have beautiful moments but it is going to be real fucked up, too”, she says.

The American singer, poet and photographer Patti Smith (b. 1946) is a living punk rock legend. In this video she gives advice to the young:

“Build a good name. Keep your name clean. Don’t make compromises, don’t worry about making a bunch of money or being successful. Be concerned about doing good work. Protect your work and if you build a good name, eventually that name will be its own currency. Life is like a roller coaster ride, it is never going to be perfect. It is going to have perfect moments and rough spots, but it’s all worth it”, Patti Smith says.

Interview by Christian Lund, the Louisiana Literature festival August 24, 2012, at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art.

Behind the Making of ‘Born & Raised’ art by David A. Smith

You just would not expect this level of craftsmanship for a commercial job — especially now that packaging for 12″ vinyl is long gone.

The Making of John Mayer’s ‘Born & Raised’ Artwork from Danny Cooke on Vimeo.

David A. Smith is a traditional sign-writer/designer specialising in high-quality ornamental hand-crafted reverse glass signs and decorative silvered and gilded mirrors. David recently produced a wonderful turn-of-the-century, trade-card styled album cover for popular American singer/songwriter John Mayer.

This film captures the ‘Behind The Scenes’ creation of the ‘Born & Raised’ and ‘Queen of California’ artwork, as well as 2 unique reverse glass panels, hand-crafted in England by David A. Smith.

The lesson is: Don’t be lazy – when you can be “creatively” lazy

trojancoffee

Via PetaPixel:

Necessity may be the mother of invention, but laziness is definitely its father. Case in point, here’s an interesting tidbit of imaging history: the first webcam ever was actually invented by lazy students at Cambridge University who didn’t want to waste a trip to the nearby coffee pot if it was going to be empty when they got there.

This coffee machine that was the inspiration for the world’s first webcam was located in a corridor just outside The Trojan Room in the old computer lab at Cambridge University. In 1991, too many trips to an empty coffee pot led Dr. Quentin Stafford-Fraser and Paul Jardetzky to invent the world’s first webcam to help late night studiers and programmers keep an eye on coffee levels.

xcoffee

Once switched on, the camera would display a 129×129 pixel grayscale picture of the coffee pot at 1 frame per second on the user’s desktop. Ironically, the “webcam” actually predates the “web” by a couple of years, but as soon as the World Wide Web went up, the service was connected to the internet.

The camera was actually switched off in August of 2001, and all that’s left if you try and pull the feed is a link to the last ever picture the webcam took. The coffee machine itself was auctioned off on eBay for over $5,000 to German magazine Der Spiegel, where it was refurbished and put back to work by Krups.

The Rise of Webcomics | Off Book | PBS

Via: Off Book | PBS:

The internet has given birth to yet another new medium: webcomics. Moving beyond the restrictions of print, webcomic artists interact directly with audiences who share their own unique worldview, and create stories that are often embedded in innovative formats only possible online. Sometimes funny, sometimes personal, and almost always weird, web comic creators have taken the comic strip form to new, mature, and artistic heights.

Featuring:
Christina Xu, Breadpig http://breadpig.com/
Nick Gurewitch, Perry Bible Fellowship http://pbfcomics.com/
Sam Brown, Exploding Dog http://explodingdog.tumblr.com/
Lucy Knisley, Stop Paying Attention http://comics.lucyknisley.com/
Andrew Hussie, Homestuck http://www.mspaintadventures.com/

Other Comics Featured:
XKCD http://xkcd.com/
Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal http://www.smbc-comics.com/
Diesel Sweeties http://www.dieselsweeties.com/
Johnny Wander http://www.johnnywander.com/

A music video for typography lovers (that may actually live up to the hype)

Via: fastcodesign:

Thanks to some combination of how much young people love YouTube and how little cash the music industry has to burn, we’ve recently been treated to a new offering called the lyric video, a special sort of promotional clip that eschews jungle cats and champagne fountains and hot rods and all the other music video staples–including, you know, the musicians–and just throws the lyrics to the song up on screen in some cutesy typeface instead. Granted, sometimes these just serve as placeholders for the real video, but it’s still kind of a tacky look for a major-label recording artist.

The clip for “Dream,” by the French band Husbands, is a lyric video in the purest sense, but it quickly reveals itself to be a bit different than the rest. For one thing, it actually makes use of a nice variety of typefaces, and it spaces them out in a pleasing way on your screen. It shows a little aesthetic restraint, which is nice compared to most of the other ones I’ve seen, which generally look like final projects for some sort of Intro to Flash high-school elective, back when anyone would have thought it made sense to teach high school kids how to make things with Flash.

But the video gets truly impressive when you realize that what you’re seeing wasn’t made by a computer. At a certain point you grasp that you’re not looking at rendered fonts but a real, physical wall of type, precisely arranged and illuminated in sync with the track.

It’s the creation of Cauboyz, a duo of French designers. “After listening [to] the song, we understood quickly that it was very structured,” one of the members explains. “We wanted to do something simple with a little bit of poetry.” The technique they decided on has to be one of the most time-consuming ways to get a song’s lyrics on screen. But bravo to them for trying it. It’s the lyrics video that type lovers deserve.