Tuesday, September 14, 2010

NYC Storefronts

You can't front on New York Cities storefronts. The playful use and abundance of typography, the clear and to-the-point advertising, the ubiquitous New York City patina, it's all somehow perfect. Here is just a taste of a great new book that tells the story through photography. Click the link to see more. Yay blog posts!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

9 More Days...

T-shirt concept for the Dutch Football Federation by Bas van de Poel and Daan van Dam. If you are watching the matches in the office, it would probably not be a good idea to wear one of these shirts...

Monday, May 10, 2010

The New Pantone Plus Series

Below is a video introducing the new Pantone plus series via Cool Hunting.

Keeping to its tradition of innovative solutions, the Carlstadt, NJ-based company today launchesThe Plus Series. A complementary video, "360˚ Color: A Peek Inside Pantone on the Release of The Plus Series," (made by CH filmmakers Gregory Mitnick and Ami Kealoha) offers a behind-the-scenes look into the system's development and products with the folks at Pantone and notable designers.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

"Kapitaal" by Studio Smack


Above is a video by Studio Smack called "Kapitaal." It is a pretty interesting concept and serves as proof that more is not always better. Below is Studio Smack's summary of the short film.

"Award-winning Typo-Animation that gives you a clear impression of the enormous amount of visual stimuli that plague us every day. Due to the immense scale of the visual bombardment, the commercial effectiveness has become utterly dubious."

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Death of Cool

A fairly excellent source for international groundbreaking and often extravagant design has decided to end it's relationship with the internet today. Apparently blog life just ain't what it used to be. ;)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Projection Project

No, it's not some crazy 3D rendering, it's real, real real, just one giant fracture sculpture, 4 projectors, and lots of attention to detail.

Augmented Sculpture by GROSSE8 & LICHTFRONT / Passagen 2010 from Lichtfront on Vimeo.

Friday, February 26, 2010

25 Ways To Overcome Creative Blocks by ISO50

Scott Hansen asked 25 "artists and creators" how they get through a creative block. Below I have posted some excerpts, but you can find all 25 of them here.

Jasper Goodall
I have a couple of things I do –
Take time away from the computer/sketchbook; visit a new city and just mooch about ( I once sat in a cafe in Berlin and had more ideas than I knew what to do with). I go to the Local University arts and design library and pour over back issues of graphic design and photography journals, snapping things that spark my imagination, then go home and print them out and stick them in a scrap book, I always have loads of ideas after this.

There are 6 strategies for this situation:

1. Avoid
Do something else, wash the car, back-up your data, do errands…
2. Think
Sit back and think about the issue, just let your mind go…
3. Research
Look up stuff, go through your old projects, but avoid Google — it takes too long to find anything useful…
4. Collect
We all have lots of stuff; there must be something in there that is waiting to be used…
5. Sketch
Drawing is great, even if you have no talent. Just visualising the simplest things makes them come alive…
6. Deconstruct
Take the problem apart, look at the parts and then put them back together…


To me there are three factors that contribute to creative block: One, believing you’re stuck. Two, knowing you’re stuck but not knowing how to get out. And three, knowing you’re stuck and knowing how to get out, but doubting your ability to do it. Here are my solutions, respectively:

1. I ask myself, am I really stuck? Sometimes we think we’re stuck or we want to think we’re stuck but we’re actually on track and just don’t know it. Some paths are inevitable. Remember, a rut is also a groove.

2. I do nothing. Being stuck is usually a matter of not seeing the problem clearly. The best medicine for that is perspective. I measure perspective in units of time and distance. Getting a away from a problem helps give me better view of it. Instead of flailing away I’ll do something unrelated — like go to a museum or watch a movie. Inevitably, something in that other experience presents itself as the answer to the problem I’m trying to ignore.

3. I become awesome. Sometimes I’m faced with a problem to which I know the solution, but executing on it just seems too hard. One trick I use to get over that feeling is to work on other, easier tasks. They don’t have to be related — finally touching up that paint above the office light switch, finishing a blog post, organizing the garage are all fine examples. Taking on a bunch of little things that I can do quickly (and well) puts me in the mindset of being able to accomplish things. Then when I come back to that insurmountable problem it’s just the next task to check off the list. No more anxiety.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Vintage Packaging

Core77 posted the link to a "goldmine" of vintage packaging. You can check it out for yourself here.

My New Favorite Inspirational Movie

Thanks Rich, for reminding me to help keep this dang blog alive :)

Rethink Scholarship at Langara 2010 Call for Entries from Rory O'Sullivan and Simon Bruyn on Vimeo.

Tom Geismar Interview at DesignBoom

The entire interview between Tom Geismar and DesignBoom can be found by clicking here. Logos and identities he and the rest at Chermayeff & Geismar are responsible for include Mobil, Xerox, Chase, National Geographic, PBS, etc... Below are some tips for "young designers," whatever that may mean. (It may mean all those younger than Tom Geismar, which would definitely include all of us...)

what mistakes or 'traps' should a young designer avoid when working on a logo design?
- not properly analyzing the real need
- trying to convey too much
- being too concerned with making something 'pretty'
- designing something that’s too much like other logos, and therefore not distinctive
- not taking into consideration the range of media in which it will mostly be used
- not being critical enough of your own work

Monday, November 2, 2009

Mindbending Hotel Interior

The new Boscolo Hotel in Milan features a candyland of chrome and neon. Click the link for a virtual LSD trip.

Friday, October 30, 2009

It's Always Sunny

Brighten your day with this feel good mural series along the El train in Philadelphia. All done by Steven Powers aka ESPO, one of the true innovators in graffiti over the last 20 years.

Friday, October 23, 2009

It is About Time for Another Post...

For some Friday fun, check out Mark Weaver's portfolio. The portfolio has some fun retro-ish images from his "Make Something Cool Every Day" series. Enjoy! And while you visit PPP, make sure you post something.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Polaroid Eye Candy

This is one of those things that make me think "I wish I had thought of this first." Click here to see Grant Hamilton's portfolio of Polaroid photographs. A comment from Grant via Daily Tonic is included below:

“Although I felt like I was onto something, those images seemed sterile and lacked soul. I was introduced to Polaroid images through the internet and thought that the imperfections and characteristic colors perfectly suited the types of subjects I was interested in.[...] Through my photos, I strive to find beauty in the mundane. It is hard to describe to passers-by why, exactly, I am photographing the side of a bus or standing on a ladder on the side of a road, trying to reach a sign. Most of the time, however, people will see the beauty that I am seeing and will smile. Often they will remark that they never noticed that before.”

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Summer Breeze

Another cool take on the interactive "video" installation:

Breeze reflection by Djeff @ "Mal au pixel" France from djeff on Vimeo.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

(Personal) Identity Guidlines

Christopher Doyle takes branding standards to heart.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Packing meat, not in there please

I've got a little R&R time in New York coming up, so in preparation I was doing some research on the Meat Packing District, where I'll be staying. Found this really cool interactive map of the area, with lots of photos and things to see. (click the title to give it a go)

And, here's another super chic new restaurant in the area: http://www.nychighline.com/flash/highline_land.htm

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

GOOD Infographics

GOOD Magazine has a Flickr page containing their infographics - which, in my opinion, is the best part of the magazine. Check them all out, here.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Warmer, Fuzzier - The Refreshed Logo

From the NYTimes, an article on some refreshed logos that, according to the article have toned down type, friendly flourishes, and happier colors. Below is an excerpt from the article:

“A logo is to a company what a face is to a person,” said Michel Tuan Pham, a professor of marketing at the Columbia Business School. "It’s hard to memorize facts about a person when you only know their name but you haven’t seen their face.” So logos remind consumers about companies’ traits and pluck at emotions — “the glue that ties all the information about the brand name together," Mr. Pham said. The economy, environment, image repair — new logos may address all of these. They are also meant to stand out in a crowd, but there are striking similarities among recent redesigns.

You can find the full article here.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Monday, April 27, 2009

Business Development Rations

I wish people would use these at conferences and trade shows, so I could have an alternative to throwing them away. Come to think of it, all communications should be laser etched into beef jerky...

We start with 100% beef jerky, and SEAR your contact information into it with a 150 WATT CO2 LASER.

Screw die-cutting. Forget about foil, popups, or UV spot lamination. THESE business cards have two ingredients: MEAT AND LASERS.

Friday, April 24, 2009

James Jarvis and Nike

Onwards from akqa on Vimeo.

I found this video posted on PSFK. What can I say, other than it is a fun animation for a sunny Friday. Below are comments by James Jarvis regarding the inspiration for the video and how the "collaboration" with Nike worked, are included below:

"I had become interested in the idea of characters that were less referential and more iconic and abstract. I particularly wanted to do something with a potato-headed stick-man that I had been drawing at that time."

"The film was inspired by certain personal experiences in running – a favourite run over Blanchland moor in Northumberland, being attacked by a crow in Singapore – and also by the transcendent, almost psychedelic experience of the simple act of running."

"Rather than a marketing project inititated by Nike, the film was something proposed and produced by myself, and as such I hope represents a much more equal collaboration with a brand."

Thursday, April 9, 2009

How to Make a 7-Inch Single

I thought there might be at least one or two of you interested in this... Courtesy of the BBC.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Lost Tribes of New York City

The Lost Tribes of New York City from Carolyn London on Vimeo.

Very clever and fun. Below is the description of those responsible.

"The latest short film from London Squared Productions. Urban Anthropologists, Andy and Carolyn London interview some of New York City's more overlooked citizens. "

Found via PSFK.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Skype Brand Book

Skype has made their brand book available for download along with logos and illustrations. It's definitely worth a peek if you have a few moments. You can download the files from here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Writing On The Wall (NYC Libraries)

Sweet new mural series coordinated by Pentagram. An initiative to inspire young minds, and to revitalize and bring some consistency to NYC public school libraries. Murals were contributed by several well known artists and designers, including Charles Wilkin, a college instructor and mentor of mine. Click the title for the full story. 

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Smallification Gone To Far?

Ooooo, a new Apple product, so sleek and small and simple. So sexy. This time a redesign of their micro-mp3 player the ipod Shuffle. Discuss amongst yourselves.

The up-side:
- Well, it's smaller. Yeah, I get it, but isn't there a cut-off where we don't really feel a difference between a product that weighs 1/8 oz. vs one that weighs a 1/16?
-They've incorporated a way to navigate different playlists, Ok, that's nice, in theory.

The down-side:
-All controls are incorporated into the  apple earbuds, which I guess a lot of people like, but I find them to be doodoo garbage.
-And a new voiceover feature seems weird and not really useful.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

More on Rebranded Beverages...

Apparently there is a lot of updating going on and not just Pepsi products. Click here to see all of the Pepsi brand updates as well as some recent refreshes by Coke and the Dr. Pepper Snapple group. The article is from psfk.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Tropicana: Back to the Old Look

According to the NYTimes, Tropicana is going back to its previous packaging design. Below is an excerpt from the article, and is an example of rapid consumer feedback influencing not just the product itself but also how it looks:

The about-face comes after consumers complained about the makeover in letters, e-mail messages and telephone calls and clamored for a return of the original look. Some of those commenting described the new packaging as “ugly” or “stupid,” and resembling “a generic bargain brand” or a “store brand."

"Do any of these package-design people actually shop for orange juice?” the writer of one e-mail message asked rhetorically. “Because I do, and the new cartons stink.” Others described the redesign as making it more difficult to distinguish among the varieties of Tropicana or differentiate Tropicana from other orange juices. Such attention is becoming increasingly common as interactive technologies enable consumers to rapidly convey opinions to marketers.

And people say designers are the only ones that care about these things...