Wednesday, December 30, 2009

#030 How You See Your World

Well, I'm enjoying a short break for the winter before I start my spring semester the 1st of February. I had a great Christmas, and it was great to just relax, but I still feel like I could sleep for weeks.
This is my final project for Design Technology. In the 1st phase we created the logo, 2nd we rendered the eyewear using the difficult yet interesting gradient mesh tool in Illustrator. Then we created the final poster.
Can you believe this isn't a photograph of the sunglasses, but a gradient mesh tracing? I think that's amazing that you can achieve this level of realism just by color sampling from a photo and adding points on a mesh. It was tedious though, and it required many hours of clicking and listening to my iPod for hours on end. But I got a good grade, so I'm thrilled.
Coming Soon: One of the Best Things I Got for Christmas!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

#029 Away

My dad brought home these cards from the bookstore the other day, and they are cool. We all know I fall for the neo-vintage (what a ridiculous term).
It's a reissue of an old lithograph card featuring the Nativity. There is gold leaf around the border, and in the garland background. And that verse is one of my favorites.
Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas, especially those of you in the East who are definitely having a White Christmas this year. Stay warm!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

#028 These People Create: ISO50

This fantastic graphic design has been magically crafted by San Francisco's Scott Hansen. I could hardly catch my breath when looking through his electrifying portfolio and his amazingly gorgeous website (I might say here that too often portfolio sites are poorly managed, but here I was pleasantly surprised).

The ever-informative and inspiring GrainEdit featured an interview with Hansen on their blog, and I was struck by the effortless way his work shifts in to the vintage realm without seeming outdated. His use and love for 1970's era Swedish typography, the slightly distressed appearance of vintage photos and stunning linework make his posters, prints and design irresistible.

One of the most interesting things about this multi-faceted designer is that he creates music on vintage recording equipment. Using synthesizers, tape recorders, and acoustic guitars, he sculpts beautiful electronica music that has a welcoming warmth to it that many artists of the genre reject in favor of cold, harsh, computer noise. He then presses these recordings onto 45's, as well as MP3's, creates sumptuous cover art, and then sells them on his website under the name Tycho.
Will somebody please, please, please get me an introduction? I would scrub toilets for this guy for 50 cents a week if it meant I could spend time in his studio.
You can read the full interview at GrainEdit here, and you absolutely must see Scott Hansen's ISO50 website which is here. Sit back, and be amazed.

Monday, December 14, 2009

#027 Indie Rocker

Farris Filbert just made his debut on Capntrade Records. He is climbing the charts at an alarming rate. As Rolling Stone puts it:

"Farris Filbert sings with verve and emotion... his new record will drive you nuts."

And that's just what it does.
But his mustache makes the chicks swoon.
So: Just in time for Christmas, a great folk-rock record, Nuts to You from brand-new artist Farris Filbert. Grab your copy today!
A few random sketches on the back of an envelope.

#026 Special

You probably already know that I love these little powerhouses of creative British fun. And I now love them to the tenth power since the company introduced these 50th Anniversary editions that are simply splendid. So, when my graphic novel(s) sell their 1,000,000th copy, I will probably have to indulge in one.
When you see me cruising around the Swiss Alps as pictured (above) you can pretty much figure that I've made it to the New York Times Best Seller List, and stayed there for a week or two.
You can build your own here, and park it on your desktop like I did with the Mayfair.

P.S. : The Mini Cooper also makes a great stocking stuffer.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

#025 Typography from the Past

Over Thanksgiving I had the opportunity to visit the Roanoake Virginia Transportation Museum. Due to its proximity to a vital rail-yard, it featured a lot of locomotives and railway history exhibits. I've loved trains since I was a kid, but during my visit I was struck by the beautiful typography that so many of the rail lines of the early 1900's used in their logos and branding.

Progressive shots showing the lettering on the side of a coach.

One of the most amazing things I saw was this old streetcar.

The exterior reminded me of a VW Microbus, and its paint was old and powdery, like so many other vehicles in the yard. But walking inside, it was like walking into the past.

It looked as though nothing had changed for 35 years. And there were ads, original ads still hanging above the seats. I felt as though I had walked into a sanctuary. So many people had ridden this streetcar. Each one had their own ideas, problems, loves, hates, dreams, hopes. America was going through similar economic hardship just like we are today, and these ads were rallying the people: work together, and together we can make it better. Something truly American. For whatever reason, I was so struck by this streetcar. Even time cannot erase the voice of the people.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

#024 Board of Bored Executives

"They'll vote with Potter otherwise!"

This is the 2nd poster in the Interbank series created this week. In case you don't get the joke, no one in the photo is happy with their insurance agent or their rates. Yeah. Now you get it. But unfortunately I cannot resist using vintage photographs and spending a whole hour poring over these archives.