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Graphic Design

Things

Posted by Alex Bec,

This week’s review is upon us again, enjoy the selection and once again a huge thanks to everyone who has kindly littered our studio with nice things over the past seven days.

APAN ÄR RÄDD by Simon Berg, distributed by by Black Book Publications
Described by the publishers as “An intense portrayal of a seemingly meaningless everyday life. But these intimate close-ups show us something other than just eternally recurring routines.” I very much agree, lush, deep colours and interesting crops make for forty-odd pages of eye-candy. Welcome to the world of Simon Berg.
www.simonberg.com
www.blackbookpublications.com

Elephant Issue 1 Published by Magma Books
I’m as bored as the next person of seeing first issues of magazines spring up left right and centre, but there’s no way you can stay mad at this gem. Rather than sitting aside the other design based mags out there, when you read Elephant you’re reading something of real worth. Five neat sections with articles covering ‘Meetings’ with the likes of Peter Saville, ‘Research’ into Scandinavian fashion, ‘Studio Visits’ with Misaki Kawai, ‘Economies’ case studies and creative city guides. With that much content you’d expect plenty of filler, but I don’t think I can find any. Hats off to Magma for supersede Graphic with a real beauty.
www.elephantmag.com
www.magmabooks.com

Cook With Ken by Chris Leah
Photographer Chris Leah’s documentary book puts short-tempered, cuisine-conscious ‘Ken’ in the spotlight. Dubious recipes and outlandish quotes made me chuckle, rather than make me want to run to the chopping board.
www.chrisleah.com

Peruse Issue 02 by Matt Adams
Simple little piece of print, well pulled off from current Nottingham Trent student Matt Adams. visually interesting, butmore importantly an aid to highlight a really fantastic fact – No numbr from one to ninety-nine when spelt uses the letters ‘a’,‘b’,‘c’ or ‘d’. I don’t care how he knows, I’m just pleased to have some useless pub fodder for tonight.
www.mattadamsdesign.com

Red Design 04 Self Promotion by Red Design
Nice self-promotional poster from Brighton studio Red Design. Outlines a few of their most recent projects as well as showing off a few printing techinques with a reversible poster.
www.red-design.co.uk

Virtual Artifacts by Kristoffer Zetterstrand, published by Biondi Books
Kristoffer is a Swedish artist who relates classic two-dimensional painting to computer-generated worlds. Why didn’t I think of that? OK, so it’s not your normal blurb to introduce a book, but the content is genuinely fascinating. A book that made me want to turn the pages must be some kind of a success.
www.zetterstrand.com
www.biondibooks.com

Ab-300

Posted by Alex Bec

Alex is one of the directors of It’s Nice That who now oversees our sister creative agency INT Works. For several years he oversaw the Monday Morning Music Video feature until it came to an end in 2014.

Most Recent: Graphic Design View Archive

  1. Madethought-gfsmith-collection-itsnicethat-list

    If you’re the kind of person whose blood pumps a little faster when perusing beautiful paper, I suggest you sit down before going any further. G . F Smith has just released an extraordinary 400-page book which shows off every paper in its repertoire and it’s a thing of awe. Created with longtime collaborators Made Thought, The Collection shows off 45 paper ranges created over the company’s 130-year history.

  2. List-blank-editions-its-nice-thatchris-petit

    Collector’s editions, luxurious foils and sculptural, perspex packages are all well and good; and one of the reasons that vinyl continues to flourish in the digital age. But the real joy in music for many of us is in a sense of community, of doing, of making friends and persuading existing ones to be as excited about a band as we are. It’s those very visceral, social aspects of music that make it such a wonderfully emotive medium, and they’re the reason that graphic designer David Blanco decided to turn the skills of his day job to his out-of-hours passion: seeing great bands, talking to them, telling other people about them and forcing their sounds into the earholes of others.

  3. Bbdfaotw-itsnicethat-list

    Studio Johannes Bissinger’s catalogue for the Stiftung Buchkunst, a compilation of the “BEST BOOK DESIGN FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD,” is a publication I’ve had on my desk since it arrived in the post last week, and which nobody has been able to walk past without picking it up to thumb through and remark “ooh, this is nice.”

  4. Mobydigg-aandp-itsnicethat-list

    Say the words “management consultancy” and you’re likely to see the colour drain from the face of whatever poor unfortunate you’re talking to. The same’s probably true when a management consultancy calls up and requests that you take care of their branding. Aside from the packets of cash there’s unlikely to be many perks to the work ahead. Refreshing then that Moby Digg’s approach to the branding of M&P management consultants turns this idea of creative tedium on its head. Aside from the simple serif word mark and logotype they’ve given each member of staff their own painterly mark and accent colour by which they can be distinguished. It’s uncomplicated conceptually but brushes off the stuffiness with which this particular profession is typically associated.

  5. List-jon-bland-its-nice-that-50-things-1

    Graphic design has a lot of power: to persuade, to delight, to foster recognition. It also has the power to help make the scariest years of a school career that little bit easier, as a few recent projects have shown. One, which we featured last year, was the playful Studio Hato-designed tool for year six kids to express themselves, and now we’ve got the equally charming 50 Things to do before the end of Year 7. Created by designer Jon Bland, the sweet little tome sets out tasks to complete during that terrifying first year into big school, and aims to help the kids – many of whom barely speak English – feel more comfortable within their school and their communities. The booklets were kept pared-back in design and printed on yellow school paper sourced directly from the good people at Manchester Academy, “a secondary school facing many challenges,” according to Jon.

  6. Mattwilley-avaunt-itsnicethat-list

    Back in March I was on a panel discussing magazine publishing with Matt Willey. We spoke in some detail about the challenges of making magazines work; something Matt is perfectly positioned to pontificate on seeing as he’s worked at a whole host of titles and even started his own in Port (although he’s no longer involved). Now based in the States as part of Gail Bichler’s design team at The New York Times Magazine, he seemed to have found the ideal fit for his prodigious editorial talents, but a few weeks ago news reached us confirming that Matt was starting a new magazine with longtime collaborator (and Port co-founder) Dan Crowe, and the explorer Ben Saunders. Why throw himself into these choppy, challenging waters again?

  7. Yanda-itsnicethat-list

    DO NOT DESIGN is a Singapore-based creative consultancy whose portfolio directly undermines its name. Its work spans editorial design produced to accompany art, installation and performance works. What caught our eye though was DEAR, a new self-funded zine which aims to celebrate the unusual and the curious in a manner which reflects what the studio describes as “our salad-bowl of a nation, Singapore.” Including visual essays and contributions by a diverse range of artists, not to mention a sparse, pared-back layout bookended by the zine’s intriguing cut-out cover, DEAR looks set to mark the start of an eclectic, and hopefully enduring new chapter for zines created in Singapore.

  8. Narcsville-itsnicethat-main

    Have you seen the mental health series that Vice is running at the moment? It’s brilliant. As well as pulling together witty, intelligent and truly necessary articles by a bunch of great writers, the artistic commissioning is bang on too. One of the artists they asked to create imagery to accompany these pieces – not an easy thing to do, I may add – is a guy who goes by the name of Narcsville.

  9. List-martin-groch-its-nice-thatera-obalka-2-final-na-web

    “A natural talent for combining type, image and abstract forms” is how we described Slovakian designer Martin Groch when we first posted about him. We stand by that, and now his talents are being put to good use under the discerning eye of Eike König at Hort, where Martin’s currently interning. During his time there he’s worked with the team on some great graphics and illustrations for Read magazine, which suit his blocky, slick style perfectly. Elsewhere in his portfolio we’ve been admiring some great cover designs for architecture magazine ERA21, and some beautiful posters for a Czech documentary film festival. “The whole concept is about confrontation between sci-fi concepts and our present reality,” Martin explains. It seems fitting for his style, which manages to articulate normal things in a disorientating, bold and futuristic style.

  10. Post-husler_rose-istnicethat-list

    London studio POST– has built an admirable reputation for clean, considered design work for clients across the world. Perusing their portfolio recently we came across this pleasing work for Husler & Rose, an online boutique that sells furniture, homeware and other bits and pieces. Too often we see identities for these kinds of shops that tick off cliched checklists ripped from Instagram mood boards but I feel the POST– team has navigated these pitfalls with skill and style. Inspired by “Herbert Bayer’s Bauhaus posters and the old jazz record sleeve designs of Duke Ellington,” the designers have developed a relevant look and feel that works across both print and digital collateral and breathes a little life into a couple of quite standard conventions.

  11. List-muir-mcneil-its-nice-that-muir-mcneil-its-nice-that-lcc_type_design_1200

    It’s Summer Shows-time again, and so we’re bracing ourselves for another slew of smart identity projects to go with them. Today, we present to you the work of MuirMcNeil, which has created the identity for the show at London College of Communication, where the duo teach. MuirMcNeil is comprised of Hamish Muir, lead tutor of BA Graphic and Media Design and Paul McNeil, course leader for MA Contemporary Typographic Media. Naturally, it’s a very typographic identity, and “confronts traditional letterform” according to LCC.

  12. 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.

  13. 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).