Archive for the 'Design' Category

Geek Meditation Session

Geek Meditation Session

Beautiful Losers

Beautiful Losers

In the early 1990’s a loose-knit group of like minded outsiders found common ground at a little NYC storefront gallery. Rooted in the DIY subcultures of skateboarding, surf, punk, hip hop & graffiti, they made art reflected the lifestyles they led…

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TED: Philippe Starck – Why design?

Philippe Starck - Why design?

Legendary designer Philippe Starck — with no pretty slides behind him — spends 18 minutes reaching for the very roots of the question “Why design?” Along the way he drops brilliant insights into the human condition; listen carefully for one perfectly crystallized mantra for all of us, genius or not. Yet all this deep thought, he cheerfully admits, is to aid in the design of a better toothbrush.

Typo’s and New Types

New Type

This is an awesome article collecting type samples that have characterised 2007 and may lead 2008. As a creative guy who often falls out of touch with pure typographic expression this was a great crash course.

Link to Speak Up (via cpluv)

Credit: Trick typeface, designed by Andrei Robu / Romania

You Can Never Leave Dripbook. Ever.

Dripbook
I’m updating this blog post after a few e-mails with Dripbook. They are a group of people trying very hard to make an excellent service. Most of my reasons for writing this post could have been dealt with better communication on their website. I suppose that’s been done by now.

Photographers, illustrators, hair stylists etc are typically a little crap at keeping their websites maintained, if they exist at all. I appreciate any efforts to help these busy creative people show their work to the world. Dripbook is one of those efforts. I found out about them through a comment in one of the Virb art groups and Mashable have written about them too. I’ll check anything out and it seemed like a good project. Easy portfolio tools combined with a social network aspect to help you connect and promote. So I sent them an application. I had to apply because… they’re pulling the exclusivity card as a marketing stunt really. I said I’m handsome and make nice work and sent them my portfolio site (ironically). Thank goodness I was let in or my street cred would have collapsed like an underfed model. The feature I wanted to explore was their ability to publish to third party sites. Widgets that create a bit of code that refers to your dynamically updated portfolio instead of you having to create the books on your own site. I use viewbook.com for a site I built for a photographer which does that exactly. Unfortunately I never did get to trying that feature.

Most of Dripbook is fine even if it’s a bit dull in the design stakes (a web 2.0 phenomenon apparently). The upload of images was easy enough, the networking idea is a good one. After I uploaded I found that my images came out looking soft. Which is odd considering they were sized down for web use and were sharp, black and white images when they left my desktop. Even that I could figure out given enough patience. My irritation is that the site is not recognizing that I have “published” a book of drawings. It says it’s published. But it’s not visible to anyone else it seems. I’ve tried every “publish” button three times and now I’m bored. If you can’t publish, you can’t promote and then the social network is useless.

Turns out that because I put a “Mature” marker on my book because it contained drawn nudity, I encountered a legal fix:

You followed the instructions exactly and did exactly what you were supposed to do. When a user goes to look at your book, he / she is asked whether he / she wants to look at mature content. Then a cookie is places on that user’s computer, and the warning does not show up again.

 A fact that would have been good to know a few days ago.
Not wanting to spend any more time on the site I figured that I’d cancel my hard won account and focus my efforts on other tasks, like my real job. Except I can’t find anywhere to cancel, suspend, deactivate, kill my account. Really. I’ve looked pretty hard. The FAQ neatly ignores the fact that anyone would be brazen enough to leave their services. I wonder what happens when you buy a premium account ($9 per month)?

Dripbook have informed me that they hadn’t got to that detail yet.  It’ll be done now.
Dripbook is in Beta phase which may excuse any screw ups and my decision to leave their site is based on a few personal impressions, not only some basic technical glitches. The site is slow, I don’t like their presentation options and I don’t like their design.

I‘d leave, but I can’t.

ps. Turns out that no one had ever asked to leave. I have that dubious honour. My apologies, Dripbook, for being that guy.

 I have been deleted. After the short e-mail chat with Dripbook I appreciate that I was rather harsh on their Beta site. I only wish they had been a bit more forthcoming with how Beta they were. I mean, who doesn’t have a delete account button?  If you think I was a putz let the comments fly.

SAW WAS

WAS SAW

Stephen Doyle is a graphic designer who sculpts words that mess with meaning. Design Observer have a fantastic write up about him with some beautiful examples of his work. His hand-built words toy with your brain in only the most fun and profound ways. He’ll have you looking for your exacto knife.

Design Observer

My New Ffffound Ffffriend!

FFFFOUND!Ffff**k! What a simple and beautiful idea to capture and display images you come across in various internet wanderings. I tend to pull images off of sites and place them into my ‘wallpaper’ folder, which then becomes a designy screensaver. My biggest complaint about my own system is the lack of metadata in the image: I don’t know where it came from once I have copied it onto my drive. Ffffound fixes this problem, creating a social medium for bookmarking images. The EXTRA bonus is the recommendations and associated images that come with every picture. You can easily spend hours meandering through hundreds (soon to be thousands and then millions) of images. I will be first in line when this comes out of private beta.

Ffffound (with 4 F’s) describes itself thusly:

FFFFOUND! is a web service that not only allows the users to post and share their favorite images found on the web, but also dynamically recommends each user’s tastes and interests for an inspirational image-bookmarking experience!!

Look for a new wave of sites to be named with four consonants now, instead of missing vowels. I’m serious!

Link via Daniel Burka on Pownce.


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