A refreshingly DIY online archive of Punk Rock Picture Sleeves.
A great selection of books and prints from the Italian publisher Corraini, including many by my favorite, Bruno Munari.
Track down the meaning of any acronym with the handy site Acronym Finder. In addition to the London University Library or a London Underground Line, the acronym LUL can also stand for Left Upper Lobectomy, Land Union Law, or (my favorite) Link Up to Learning.
“The Center for Urban Pedagogy’s new series of fold-out posters uses innovative graphic design to explore and explain public policy. Making Policy Public is published twice a year, and each poster is the product of a commissioned collaboration between a designer and an advocate.” Apply by June 16th.
From William Grimes’s charming NYT review of Peter Boxall’s new book “1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die”: “In his novel ‘Changing Places,’ David Lodge—not on the list—introduces a game called Humiliation. Players earn points by admitting to a famous work that they have not read. The greater the work, the higher the point score. An obnoxious American...
I would love to meet Felix Burrichter sometime. Not only do I love his own magazine PIN-UP, which is beautifully designed by Geoffrey Han and Dylan Fracareta, but his taste in magazines, as evidenced by this write up for T’s blog The Moment, is impeccable. Great picks all the way down to The World of Interiors!
The gorgeous, Hitchcock-inspired photos of LA artist Alex Prager are well worth a look. Start with isolated, shivering Annie, waist-deep in a sea as blue as her dress.
What do you get when you cross Bruno Munari, David Byrne, and Constantine Boym’s Searstyle line from 1992? SVA MFA’s Designer as Author Chair Projects, seen this weekend at NYC’s ICFF. Ikea Hackers beware!
Fischer vs Spassky
Above: For her project, Joanne Chew researched a variety of different chess notation systems and synthesized them into a single place. Typeset the sequence of 27 chess moves for Fischer vs Spassky (Game 5). You may either visualize the board or use chess notation, but your goal in either case should be to present the information as clearly as possible to a non-expert. Resources YouTube...
Above, top to bottom: Ryan Quigley used Norman Foster’s new Hearst Tower as a modular grid for his series of letters. Debra Pitel modelled her letterforms after Jean Nouvel’s distinctive window voids used in his unfinished Landmark Lofts project. Design a full alphabet (A–Z) in response to a well-known building. Prepare a 17”W x 11”H ring-bound presentation book...
Above: Scott Kellum’s initial modular typeface design became the foundation for a modified Rubik’s Cube in which the alphabet could be more easily and more playfully produced. At Scott’s site, you can buy your own Typecube or download the font whose characters serve as its basis. Working in small groups, construct an alphabet (A–Z, 0–9) out of repeated modular elements....
Above: Joanne Chew’s set was based on the form of a scissor with myrad variations and sizes. Develop a non-alphabetic set of at least 26 formally-related objects and use these objects to design an A2 format specimen sheet showing the set in use. This assignment is from the class Typographic Research. It was an adaptation and simplification of my own set project from the class...
Above: Gabrielle Tigan devised a code that involved the intervals between letters in the alphabet. She used it to send her partner encrypted letters from famously separated lovers. The project took its final form as a collection of quotations from these letters in postcard form. Find a partner and design a code, ideally one suited for a specific purpose. Pass messages back and forth...
Above: Stills from Ryan Quigley’s lyrics-only video of Gang of Four’s “Natural’s Not in It.” Though Ryan’s treatment of the type is relatively simple, his aggressive misspelling of words helps to drive home the song’s rebellious message. Watch it here on YouTube. Pick a song. Make a video for it using only words from its lyrics. This assignment is...
Above: Gabrielle Tigan became fascinated with the way that photocopy machines softened, garbled, and desanitized typefaces. Her experiments were finally catalogued in a self-initiated zine whose primary text was drawn from Walter Benjamin’s essay “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction.” Take a photo or find a photo in which type does not behave as you’d...
Above: Joanne Chew’s project played off the supposed neutrality of Helvetica by injecting it into our national political discussion. Splitting the typeface vertically, she produced “Helvetica Left Wing” and “Helvetica Right Wing” and set comments on health care from Democratic and Republican candidates on a large silkscreened broadside. Printed in reverse on the...
This class was presented in a very informal workshop format. Its original title at Parsons was “Experimental Typography,” but I was determined to challenge my students on this designation. I wanted to know what made typography “experimental” to them, if this word was appropriate, and, if not, what a better title for the course might be. For more on this question see Peter...
Milton Glaser drew the poster announcing Ettore Sottsass’s new Olivetti typewriter, the Valentine. The poster uses Glaser Stencil (of course). BiblioOdyssey (a site you’ll remember from before) has a great batch of Sottsass drawings up now, and the Flickr set in particular is worth checking out. Start here.
Amazing: the CBS eye has Shaker roots. I had no idea, but of course it makes perfect sense. The original drawing designer William Golden based CBS’s logo on is from an article on the Shakers that ran in the first issue of Alexey Brodovich’s Portfolio magazine in Winter 1950.
Five types of businesses, according to Pine & Gilmore’s book The Experience Economy: “1) A commodity business charges for undifferentiated products. 2) A goods business charges for distinctive, tangible things. 3) A service business charges for the activities you perform. 4) An experience business charges for the feeling customers get by engaging it. 5) A transformation business...
Kevin tipped me off to MoMA’s great new program that streams their audio guides over their WiFi network for visitors with iPhones or iPod Touches. I was at the museum this weekend checking out a bunch of great shows, and I’m pleased to report it worked like a charm. The clips from the Color Chart exhibition were particularly nice, and MoMA has made them available to non-visitors here.
The magical number
From Christopher D. Green’s insanely great archive, “Classics in the History of Psychology” comes George Miller’s famous 1956 paper, “The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Some Limits on our Capacity for Processing Information.” Among many wonderful things, the paper gave us the concept of “chunking.” Since Miller’s paper draws heavily...
I’ve always been fascinated by the complex motivations behind lying, and RadioLab’s recent program on deception is, I think, one of the most interesting introductory looks at the subject. Great stuff from a great show.