Meet Frank Chimero
More than likely, you already know Frank Chimero via his ongoing projects such as The States or his Inspirational Design Posters but get ready to know him better. I had the good fortune to meet Frank in person when I was reviewing portfolios at the 1st Annual Dallas Society of Visual Communications Student Show & Conference a few years ago. His aesthetic and attitude were instantly captivating and you could tell that his portfolio was just a hint of what was to come. It was clear that Frank was a thinker and a craftsman – and our friendship was sealed at that moment.
As self-described on his site: Frank is a designer, illustrator and tinkerer from Missouri. Inspired by the mid-century aesthetic, Frank tries to recapture the sense of optimism, playfulness, heart and charm that’s characteristic of the period. He can usually be found surrounded by many tiny slips of paper with fragments of ideas scrawled on them. He believes in simplicity, honesty, humor, enthusiasm, keeping busy and air guitar solos. And he also believes in lots of little things over one big thing.
Frank is also beginning to teach design at Missouri State University to a group of lucky students. These reasons and more are why Frank is now a part of Thinking for a Living™. Give him a warm welcome and keep an eye out for his posts on the blog. They are guaranteed to be thought-provoking, entertaining or inspiring – and perhaps all of these at once.
Objectified is a feature-length independent documentary about industrial design. It’s a look at the creativity at work behind everything from toothbrushes to tech gadgets. It’s about the people who re-examine, re-evaluate and re-invent our manufactured environment on a daily basis. It’s about personal expression, identity, consumerism, and sustainability. It’s about our relationship to mass-produced objects and, by extension, the people who design them.
Through vérité footage and in-depth conversations, the film documents the creative processes of some of the world’s most influential designers, and looks at how the things they make impact our lives. What can we learn about who we are, and who we want to be, from the objects with which we surround ourselves?
Read director Gary Hustwit’s post about the film.
Objectified is currently in production and will have its world premiere in early 2009.
Paola Antonelli (Museum of Modern Art, New York)
Chris Bangle (BMW Group, Munich)
Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec (Paris)
Andrew Blauvelt (Walker Art Center, Minneapolis)
Anthony Dunne (London)
Naoto Fukasawa (Tokyo)
IDEO (Palo Alto)
Jonathan Ive (Apple, California)
Hella Jongerius (Rotterdam)
Marc Newson (London/Paris)
Fiona Raby (London)
Dieter Rams (Kronberg, Germany)
Karim Rashid (New York)
Alice Rawsthorn (International Herald Tribune)
Rob Walker (New York Times Magazine)
NY77: The Coolest Year in Hell
Congratulations are in order! NY77: The Coolest Year In Hell has been nominated in the 29th Annual News and Documentary Emmy Awards for the Outstanding Arts & Culture Programming and Outstanding Individual Achievement in a Craft: Graphic Design and Art Direction categories.
In the summer of 2007 David Ahuja of Athletics worked with Wyeth Hansen and Todd Neale to design and animate this piece for VH1’s Rock Docs. This two-part, two-hour documentary tells the story of 1977, an astonishing year in New York City history. The documentary weaves together the stories of the emergence of hip hop, punk and disco, graffiti art, and sexual liberation. In the background are the major political events and social issues of the day – crime, urban decay, financial woes, the infamous blackout, drugs, Son of Sam, the bitter mayoral election and the overall poverty that gripped the city.
The Italic Poster
The silkscreened edition of The Italic Poster, designed by Eivind Søreng Molvær, is now available for purchase. Printed in an edition of 100 on Plike Black 140 GSM paper from GF Smith, the posters are silkscreened with white ink and are signed and numbered on the back by the designer himself. Postage, packaging and handling are all included in the price of 35 GBP. Please allow 10 days for delivery.
25ah is Dana Bergquist and Jacqueline Jacoel. To say that they are fond of typography is an understatement. From their office in Stockholm, Sweden, this talented duo creates simple and beautiful works that illustrate a sophisticated use of typography and color that results in truly timeless design solutions. Click and be inspired.
Dear Lulu is a test book researched and produced by graphic design students at Hochschule Darmstadt, Germany, during an intensive two-day workshop with London-based designer James Goggin of Practise. The book’s intention is to act as a calibration document for testing colour, pattern, format, texture and typography. Exercises in colour profile (Adobe RGB/sRGB/CMYK/Greyscale), halftoning, point size, line, geometry, skin tone, colour texture, cropping and print finishing provide useful data for other designers and self-publishers to judge the possibilities and quality of online print-on-demand – specifically Lulu, with this edition.
Starting with the Universe
One of the great American visionaries of the twentieth century, R. Buckminster Fuller endeavored to see what he, a single individual, might do to benefit the largest segment of humanity while consuming the minimum of the earth’s resources. Doing “more with less” was Fuller’s credo. He described himself as a “comprehensive anticipatory design scientist,” setting forth to solve the escalating challenges that faced humanity before they became insurmountable.
Music, design and improvisation
I highly recommend viewing this clip of Bill Evans on creativity and self-teaching that was taken from a 1966 documentary entitled The Universal Mind of Bill Evans. In the clip, the brilliantly original jazz pianist has an intense conversation with his composer brother, Harry, on the nature of creativity in jazz. It’s amazing how his lessons on improvisation within musical frameworks applies to the craft of graphic design.
On a related note, in this session from Webstock 08, Liz Danzico explores what it means to design in the age of frameworks and investigates their governing principles – learning from existing models as diverse as jazz music and oral cultures. Emphasis has shifted from editor to reader, stories have gone from individual to social, people are relying on patterns rather than interfaces. But as we move from designing artifacts to designing systems, are there new guidelines at work? We want users to be able to control their own experiences, but how do we ensure they have the right tools to do so?