Archive | October, 2010

I hope he doesn’t make us out of cheese.

27 Oct

I have proven myself to be a complete sucker for any project using states as a theme. One of my favorite albums is titled State Songs. And I’ve been really bummed that musician Sufjan Stevens has apparently dropped his project to devote a complete album to each and every state.

Of course, it is also no secret that I love the use of map imagery in just about anything. And this project, by graphic designer and illustrator Frank Chimero, brings it all together. Let’s hope he doesn’t stop at 17.



27 Oct

Nice use of the ‘ol em dash, too.

Thanks to Melissa R. for sharing this.

One for the wish list.

27 Oct

You know, this is just what’s missing from my living room. And at the current exchange rate, it could be had for only $20,845!

All In Order

25 Oct

I knew I had to share this link when it was brought to my attention yesterday by two unrelated artist friends who live on opposite sides of the country. (South Dakota and Texas, to be exact.) Things Organized Neatly is just that: hundreds of great images of, well, things organized neatly. With very little else. Check out the archive page: it’s like a Google Images results page without all of the unnecessary crap.

All of this seems to correspond nicely with a passage read again this morning in Ellen Lupton’s Thinking With Type: “In order to help readers make connections and comparisons as well as to find information quickly, a single surface packed with well-organized information is sometimes better than multiple pages with a lot of blank space.” (p. 75) Not that I don’t love vast amounts of white space, but variety might also be the spice of design.

I’m posting my favorites here. The first image is actually a visual list of ingredients from a recipe in an Ikea cookbook. Please excuse me while I better organize the items on my desk, and then my kitchen, and then….

Another fine example of imaginative mapping.

22 Oct

Years ago, when I worked in a wonderful bookstore, I remember seeing a really cool book containing imaginary blueprints of classic television homes. The Brady Bunch house was definitely in there. And I think it also contained the New Rochelle, N.Y., house from the Dick Van Dyke show as well as Andy Griffith’s Mayberry pad. I don’t know about you, but when I spend serious time with a television show or a movie, I can’t help but compose and imagine the layout of the show’s environment in my head.

Imagine, then, the delight I felt this morning when I came across this rendering of the Manhattan offices of Sterling Cooper Draper Price. I’ve spent part of this week depressed that we’ve come to the end of another thrilling season. (Er, marriage proposal?!) But at least I can take an imaginary stroll though the offices… though I’m not convinced yet that Roger has a corner office. But it is true that he does have the best lamp in the biz.

“…then each of us will have two ideas.”

18 Oct

I’ve been out of town for a few days to attend a printmaking conference, and I’ve been so busy absorbing new information that I haven’t had a good chance to write a decent post. But I do want to share this George Bernard Shaw quote I found at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis the other day:

“If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange apples then you and I each have an apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.”

This is one big reason why we meet twice a week for class, even if there isn’t a scheduled critique. And it’s worth noting that, as an instructor, I’m a perennially thankful recipient of the ideas as well.

Use your tools, your voice.

11 Oct

Last week, a former student of mine sent me a link to a lovely video titled Thoughts On My Bike. There are many things to like about this piece: I am especially interested in the intersection of hand-drawn art (drawing, painting) and new technology (video, internet). I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. Too often, we think of these things as being separate from one another… black or white… Luddite or techie. But to me, the potential of contemporary design and art lies in the ability to use the tools you have available to you to best express your vision.

Further inquiry revealed that Thoughts On My Bike was made by Andrea Dorfman, the same person who made How To Be Alone, one of my favorite viral videos of the past year. In How To Be Alone, Dorfman celebrates the ins and outs of solitude over a really lovely soundtrack. More, please.