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Graphic Design

Things

Posted by Will Hudson,

We’ve played with the format of how we go about reviewing everything for long enough now. We get sent a lot of really nice things as well as picking up bits and pieces along the way. The most appropriate collective noun for these things appears to be things.

So every weekend there will be a post go up about these things, called Things. Here’s what we looked at this week.

Huh Magazine

Published by HUH. Media
There are a lot of pretty poor free publications out there. Fact. The majority clutter the entrance or shelf of many pubs and venues. Fear not though because among the chaff lies some things worth looking at. It’s pretty obvious from looking at it that the content is going to be as considered as the design. As well as the content in the newspaper it’s also archived all online so if you can’t pick it up from one of the stockists. you’ve got no excuse to pass this one by.
www.huhmagazine.co.uk

213 Magazin

Created by Illustration class at Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design
The aim of 213 Magazine is to provide a platform for illustration students at Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design (based in Halle) to get their work published and be seen. It’s safe to say it’s doing that, as I would have never found it otherwise and the work is great. A simple two colour print job for Issue 2, The Wooden House is full of lively, interesting artwork. It’s got that special something about it, it just feels right.
www.213magazin.de

Sheffield Institute of Arts, Graphic Design Retrospective 2008/09

Design and Art Directio Ben Mclaughlin & Jason Wolfe
Nice conclusive round up of the academic year at Sheffield Hallem. Another good use of a two colour design documenting the course information, facilities, exhibitions, workshops and guest speakers. It also got sent through to us in what at first glance looked like a vacuum formed soap dish but with further reading resulted in being a topographic typographic landscape.
www.shu.ac.uk/art

Alison Carmichael Woz ’Ere Poster

Typographic Illustion by Alison Carmichael. Photography by Sean & Ben.
The work of Alison Carmichael is a pleasure to look at anyway so another excuse is always welcomed. Pity that there was a whopping great sticker on the front of it but Jelly (her agent) is obviously trying their best to get her work infront of people, and rightly so. Strongly recommend is an extended browse of Alison’s work if you’ve not seen it before.
www.jellylondon.com
www.alisoncarmichael.com

The Incidental

Developed by the Architecture, Design and Fashion department at the British Council
If you were in Milan this year for the annual Furniture Fair you might already be aware of The Incidental. The community generated news pamphlet provides daily reviews and comments on what’s worth seeing plus the previous day’s highlights and they invite everyone to contribute. By joining thier online groups you can upload events, pictures and observations at Flickr, Twitter and Upcoming. “Technophobes can submit personal highlights to the team by scribbling on anything to hand or by text and email.” If you did miss them in Milan the good news in they will be in London later this year for the design festival. Certainly one to look out for…
www.theincidental.org

Super Secret Art Interaction

From the desk of H. Mathis
Anything that comes through to us with stationary that reads From the desk off… deserves a look. At first glance I was completely mystified as to what this was but on closer inspection an interesting (if not a little tongue in cheek) project emerges. Esentially an ad was placed on Craigslist at various times over a one year period between April 2007 and April 2008. From the subsequent responses 24 people were scheduled for a ‘Super Secret Art Interaction’, which are documented in this book and DVD, and in part on his website.
www.antisuccess.com

Horror Vacui

Designed by Erosie, edited and published by Sixpack France
The talented Erosie has done a zine for Sixpack France. It’s colourful and 24 pages. Not dismissing it as “just another zine” but what more can you say, it’s nice and if you like his work or think you might like her work then you should check it out.
www.sixpack.fr
www.erosie.net

Wh-300

Posted by Will Hudson

Will founded It’s Nice That in 2007 and is now director of the company. Once one of the main contributors to the site he has stepped back from writing as the business has expanded. He is a regular guest on the Studio Audience podcast.

Most Recent: Graphic Design View Archive

  1. Tomaslaar-itsnicethat-main

    Nice body of work here from Dutch design student Tomas Laar, who has a pleasing understanding of typography and the fun there is to be had in publication design. Even though he’s still studying he’s been very busy immersing himself in the design world, taking part in Hort’s raucous After School Club and a number of different group shows and workshops. What I like about his work is that he’s not afraid to mess around a bit, and the more professional journals he’s put together and professionally bound are contrasted by mini-projects that see him making posters in homage to designers he admires and pasting them up on walls around The Hague. Even his typography is light-hearted, and shows how unafraid he is to get stuck in with different materials and processes in order to get the best result. He’s also got an absolute ripper of a blog.

  2. Spd-newyork-itsnicethat-list2

    Call me a massive magazine nerd if you must but I really enjoy the conversation about what makes a great cover. Is there a science to it as Tyler Brûlé maintains? Does it have to be meticulously planned or can it be the simple execution of gut instinct? Where is that fine line between bold and daring on the one hand, and obtuse and gimmicky on the other? Anyway yesterday two “best cover” shortlists were unveiled which gives us a glimpse into what two leading industry bodies think (The Society of Publication Designers and The Professional Publishers Association).

  3. Flatland-itsnicethat-list

    “We hear a lot about the death of print and the dominance of digital,” begins Epilogue’s Kickstarter pitch video for a new version of Edwin Abbott’s Flatland, “but it’s having access to either that makes this an exciting time. The challenge is, how do you make something that is interesting and meaningful with both?”

  4. Jaimezuverza-itsnicethat-main

    If you ever want to read a truly inspiring interview with one of the coolest designers out there, look no further than this one with Jaime Zuverza we ran on the site back in 2013. In it Jaime said: “Lately I have been inspired by the strange things the body and mind create. I think those things must be welcomed in a friendly manner. The body produces blood, tears, boogers, vomit, caca, gas, wax, urine, spit, odours, etc. The mind produces dreams, hallucinations, delusions, paranoid associations, psychic vibes, phobias, visions. All of these things are usually kept hidden but they play a big part in people’s daily lives.”

  5. Stosh-itsnicethat-list-2

    Stosh is the leading case in my new argument (actually my only case, but that’s neither here nor there) that all studios formed of two or more people should be named by combining those two names together. Freelance graphic designers Stephanie Cuérel and Josh Schaub (Stosh!) have been collaborating since 2010 and judging by their website – a trichotomy of bold design made by one, the other or both of them, with the odd GIF thrown in for good measure – it was a good decision.

  6. New-dps-itsnicethat-list

    It probably won’t be of much interest to you, but I wrote my dissertation on the intersection between digital platforms and physical publishing and the interesting ways people are finding to merge the two. For me it was fascinating, for some of you it’s probably exceptionally tedious. But for those of you with a similarly perverse interest in these curiously anachronistic forms of publishing there’s an interesting online archive that brings them all together. P-DPA (the Post-Digital Publishing Archive) is an impressive resource created by Silvio Lorusso dedicated to documenting projects at the forefront of modern publishing. It’s far from comprehensive, but the user-generated archive offers up some exciting examples of progressive publishing. I could go on, but I’ve probably already bored some of you to tears.

  7. Spin-itsnicethatlistfull_screen_simon_pengelly_2

    When graphic designers take on furniture designers, their broadening solutions can sometimes feel formulaic – all wholesome browns and chatter about “craft.” That’s why it’s so refreshing to see Spin’s work for British furniture designer Simon Pengelly. “The idea for Simon’s identity came from a visit to his workshop and noticing the lovely graphic stripes on the edge of the plywood used on one of his chairs,” says Spin. “The various iterations of the marque reflect different thicknesses.” Despite the fact, as Spin puts, it, Simon’s design approach “brings together a blend of organic minimalism and a distinctive feel for natural materials,” the identity focusses on the minimalism and shuns the organic, taking on a bold, direct and a very brave aesthetic.

  8. Anagrama-itsnicethat-list

    Mexican design studio Anagrama has turned its focus to one of its own this time around, creating a solid brand identity and new interior for a “cantina” called Botanero Moritas. Anagrama had the restaurant’s rich brand history – stretching all the way back to 1939 – to wrangle with, and chose to channel as much of its tradition and history into the new identity as possible while still striking a chord with contemporary branding. It went with a simple, bold logo on dark grainy backgrounds for much of the printed collateral including business cards, postcards and packaging, employing a rainbow foil to jazz it up where necessary, while the variety of typefaces used on menus and signage hints at the diversity of old and new references.

  9. Wife_web_backdrme-itsnicethat.list

    It’s always such a joy when great music and great graphics combine, as we explored recently in our Art + Music series. So when we found out that Manchester agency DR.ME was behind the sleeves for one of our all-time favourite record labels, Tri Angle, it was a happy day indeed. “Happy,” however, is perhaps not so apt for describing the sleeves themselves – or indeed the music of Tri Angle’s roster – characterised by a dark, brooding, experimental sound. Some dub it witch house, some rape gaze, others drag, but by any name, it’s downright weird and often rather brilliant. But enough gushing about these strange, cracked-out sounds, let’s talk about the sleeves.

  10. Graphilately-itsnicethat-list

    For some years now stamp collecting has been relegated from the status of a widespread and admirable pastime to a somewhat nerdy pursuit, and this is a perception that Blair Thomson, creative director of design studio Believe In, is keen to shake off. Having had a passion for stamps instilled in him at a young age, Blair is the designer behind Graphilately, an Instagram account dedicated to his own beautifully curated, and very well photographed collection, which celebrates stamps as a form of graphic art in their own right.

  11. Anna-kulachek-itsnicethat-list-2

    The very best graphic identities, as designer Anna Kulachek would attest, take on a life of their own. The Moscow-based creative has been working on identities for the Prague School of Design since 2012, and they’ve since grown into an evolving body which grows and reforms with each new brief. “In the beginning it was built on the illustrations of the city,” Anna explains, “because one of the points in the brief was to show what’s happening in Prague. So I decided to draw the school in simple shapes.”

  12. Chris-van-niekerk-itsnicethat-listfine_furniture_1

    Chris van Niekerk’s designs are direct, accomplished and considered, but what makes them extra intriguing are the process stories behind each. Take his special edition vinyl sleeves for Cheap Thrills. They look good enough – all dingy, limited palettes and dynamic type – but he explains that the imagery was created by sampling the sound waves from side A of each vinyl, and visualising them, which is pretty cool. The project that really caught our eye, not least because of how well shot it is, is Chris’ branding for bespoke furniture maker Jake Coleman, which takes a fresh look that’s true to its product, using a puzzle piece inspired by dovetails as the centre of the identity. To show the versatility of this kid, we’ve also included the designs for an Aperture publication, marking 60 years of the photography foundation, which looks very slick indeed.

  13. Emptyfilmposters-itsnicethat-list

    Sure this isn’t the kind of thing we usually post, but the sun’s all blazing and glorious outside our windows today, so we thought we’d be kind and give you something to stare at for the next few hours until it’s time to make your way to the closest beer garden available. You know what these images are don’t you? They’re iconic film posters with all traces of branding and characters removed – the bench without Forrest, a sunset with Simba removed and a deep blue sub-aquatic fade that’s one shark short of of a multi-million dollar blockbuster franchise. These posters are the result of hours of hard photoshopping by French art director Madani Bendjellal, and for making our afternoon pass that little bit faster we owe him our thanks. Thanks!