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On Design

Don't Wait to Make

Alex Osorio

Recently a friend of mine told me he didn't want to work on a project because he had such high standards he didn't think he could accomplish what he envisioned. So many of us designers can relate to that feeling but not starting at all would be our biggest mistake. Same goes for young designers who are just starting out. You have to start somewhere. Don't put off making your portfolio or a project because you don't feel like you have the skill set. Start somewhere. Start today. Then iterate and reiterate. Will your project be better after the seventh iteration, most likely but you can't get to the seventh without the first. Don't let fear hold you back from expressing yourself creatively. Will you fuck it up? Yes. Failure is the only way forward.

IFC Branding

Alex Osorio

I am so impressed with this new branding work from IFC. The colors and type are young and fresh and the design feels like organized chaos. Do you know who else is doing organized chaos really well these days. UMA design farm, check out their work here.

Redesigning the World Cup

Alex Osorio

The World Cup is a huge sporting event that deserves better graphics. In such a visual medium it seems strange how much we rely on commentators to tell us how often a team has had possession of the ball or who has been flagged for what. In several cases the score is too small or illegible from a distance which is crazy because so many gather to watch in bars. The solution so far has been to occasionally show a larger score board at the bottom. A better solution can surely be found though, no? Guus ter Beek, Tayfun Sarier, Jordon Cheung and George Grace were apparently thinking the same thing and put their ideas and designs into a fascinating article on Medium that you can read here.

Unquiet Film Series - Times New Roman

Alex Osorio

Found via swissmiss

Find out more: http://www.foreverunquiet.co.uk This is a film about font. Times New Roman was designed for The Times in 1931 and is one of the most recognised fonts in the world. Whether you like it or not, it is not a font to be ignored. Try the digital pack for £1 for 30 days.

Century: 100 Years of Type in Design

Alex Osorio

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of taking a guided tour through AIGA + Monotype's "Century: 100 years of Type in Design" exhibit. We were shown some of the first subway design guidelines created by Massimo Vignelli. The walls are decorated with the periods of the different Monotype typefaces. The curator himself is a living breathing museum of typeface tattoos. We also learned about the history of Condé Nast's publications and their demand for excellence in controlling their paper, ink and typesetting process from beginning to end. The whole experience was truly fascinating and I highly recommend it to other type lovers. The exhibit is going on now through June 18th.

Here's a link to the exhibit site from AIGA.

The exhibition is free and open to the public.

Gallery hours
Monday through Wednesday: 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Thursday: 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Friday: 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

*Please note: The gallery will be closed on Thursdays from 1:00–6:00 p.m. for pre-registered and private tours.

Marvel Prototyping App

Alex Osorio

Marvel app is a free mobile and web prototyping service for designers. Powered by Dropbox. Check it out! www.marvelapp.com or say hello on Twitter www.twitter.com/marvelapp

Flinto is another prototyping app I have used with a 30-day free trial period. Anyone else know of any other good prototyping apps? Share them in the comments below! Thanks!

Sign Painters (Official Trailer)

Alex Osorio

OUT NOW AT WWW.SIGNPAINTERSFILM.COM This the official trailer for SIGN PAINTERS a documentary by Faythe Levine & Sam Macon. For information regarding screenings, and other news please visit www.signpaintersfilm.com About the project... There was a time, as recently as the 1980s, when storefronts, murals, banners, barn signs, billboards, and even street signs were all hand-lettered with brush and paint. But, like many skilled trades, the sign industry has been overrun by the techno-fueled promise of quicker and cheaper. The resulting proliferation of computer-designed, die-cut vinyl lettering and inkjet printers has ushered a creeping sameness into our landscape. Fortunately, there is a growing trend to seek out traditional sign painters and a renaissance in the trade. In 2010 Directors Faythe Levine and Sam Macon, with Cinematographer Travis Auclair, began documenting these dedicated practitioners, their time-honored methods, and their appreciation for quality and craftsmanship. Sign Painters, the first anecdotal history of the craft, features the stories of more than two dozen sign painters working in cities throughout the United States. The documentary and book profiles sign painters young and old, from the new vanguard working solo to collaborative shops such as San Francisco’s New Bohemia Signs and New York’s Colossal Media’s Sky High Murals. The book published by Princeton Architectural Press in November 2012 features a foreword by legendary artist (and former sign painter) Ed Ruscha. We encourage you to pick up a copy at your local book shop, or directly from Princeton Architectural Press - http://goo.gl/aTZLq

4 Principles of Great Design for Everyone

Alex Osorio

1. SIMULTANEOUSLY EMBRACE DESIRES & CONSTRAINTS

Create a solution that embraces and satisfies constraints & desires. It must be simultaneous. One cannot ignore the other.

2. MINIMIZE RESOURCE INEFFICIENCIES

Start with a systematic analysis of the product. Use first principles to reinvent problematic aspects.

3. OPTIMIZE VALUE

Provide the maximum functional, social, and emotional value for a minimum initial investment and low long-term maintenance cost.

4. DIGNIFY EVERYONE

We are all human. Do not discriminate based on geography, culture, or economic status. A homeless person and the President should be treated equally.

Monday Links

Alex Osorio

The Avondale Type Co. is on instagram and please for the love of beautiful typography go follow them right now. I’m dead. I looked at too many beautiful type pics and I’m dead.

 

Screenhero is a free tool for sharing your screen with your team. Everyone can write code, browse the web and iterate on designs at the same time. No more file sharing and voice chat is enabled as well. Werk.

 

Set in Interstate and Benton Modern, the blog of the other half of everyones favorite type duo, Tobias Frere-Jones is live.

 

Speaking of which, here’s the latest drama in the type saga in an article PencilScoop is calling “Return of the Typographer”

 

Captivate.co is a gallery of interesting and well made mobile interaction animations.

Monument Valley

Alex Osorio

Monument Valley is a revolutionary video game app for iPhone and iPad (Android coming soon) that was just released by USTWO. The game itself is incredibly beautiful and challenges your perceptions of space and geometry. Incredible work. Here's a quote from their development blog:

 "My hope for Monument Valley is that it might contribute to the argument that the medium of entertainment we call video games is in fact art."

This is definitely art. Misson accomplished. Download it here. (Found via Simon Cave)

Macaw

Alex Osorio

Macaw is a tool that claims to allow us to "stop writing code and start drawing it." I've been waiting for its launch for quite some time now and I'm really excitied to get my paws on the free trial. The total one time cost rings in at $179. Which eventually would pay for itself over a monthly or yearly subscritpion to just one WYSYWIG app like Muse or Dreamweaver on Creative Cloud. It'll be interesting to see if it matches Photoshop in image compositing abilities while exporting clean and beautiful code. Stay Tuned.

Monday Links

Alex Osorio

Two of my favorite blogs Swissmiss and ACupofJo usually post a Friday link pack. I love taking a break and seeing what they share but sometimes I need that pick-me-up on Mondays instead of Fridays. Maybe you do too dear reader? So I'll start posting a link pack on Mondays. Hope you have a lovely week:

You can set your html bkgd color to "chucknorris" and here's proof.

A fun reddit post on coming up with a word that’s a hex value that suits it’s color. For example, #F1eece is beige like lamb’s wool. #Cabb1e is a yellowish color. (not exactly cab color unless maybe the cab hadn’t been washed in awhile) And my favorite #Fabbbb is a pretty pink.

Test your site’s usability using Peek. (can’t believe this is free)

99% invisible puts out an excellent podcast. Listen here

After listening to episode 106: The Fancy Shape on 99% Invisible, I’m seeing quatrefoils everywhere.

Last week I posted about Photoshop exporting CSS code. So I was fascinated to read about the advantages of skipping Photoshop altogether and designing in the browser. Not sure I'm ready for that just yet. What about you guys?

EXPORT CSS DIRECTLY FROM PHOTOSHOP

Alex Osorio

This week I came across an amazing feature in Photoshop that comes with Creative Cloud. If you right click on a group or set of layers, there's an option called "Export to CSS" which generates the CSS code with all the styles you applied to text, shapes etc. While the CSS is not perfect or complete it still gives you a great headstart. The tool names classes and ids identical to your layer or folder names so you have to be methodical about labeling your layers (as per usual hopefully). Can't wait to try it out.

Show-Card Writing

Alex Osorio

This week I ordered Faythe Levine's "Sign Painters". When a coworker of mine saw the book arrive, he said he had a book I'd be interested in seeing. Little did I know that what he would show me was an Instructional Text Book for Sign Makers that was over 100 years old. I immediately began to take photos of every page, of course, and I've selected a few images that are particularly delightful for your viewing pleasure. Sadly, this copy of "I.C.S. Reference Library - Show-Card Writing Design and Ornament Alphabets" is one of the very few left in existence and cannot be purchased off Amazon. If anyone finds it somewhere else, I'd love to hear about it in the comments.

(All images are Copyright 1903 by International Textbook Company and the book is owned by Andrew Marconi, who inherited it from his grandfather)