1. Stool-list

    If you’re looking for a comfortable place to park your backside for the day (it doesn’t have to be for the whole day) then we thoroughly recommend the latest offering from Australian designer Timothy John; the Sidecick Stool. Crafted from powder-coated steel with a cork seat, the Sidekick reminds us of those glass beakers you used to find in school chemistry labs back in the day when you were allowed to mix chemicals in your hands and lick asbestos mats, and for that reason we’re pretty damn keen on it – even though we definitely can’t afford one!

  2. Opinion-list

    Editor Rob Alderson explains why It’s Nice That has signed up to the #includedesign campaign and why it’s crucial art and design in schools is not downgraded. As ever, we welcome your comments below

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    Now this is beautiful! A lot of people are chucking detritus on to coloured backgrounds these days, so it comes as a real refreshing surprise when an artist like Elizabeth Atterbury comes along and shows the world how it’s done.

  4. Lewel-list

    We don’t know much about what the kids get up to in Kiev, but if Ukranian artist Lewel is anything to go by, those guys have a hell of a lot of fun. Beer drinking, skateboarding and painting on every surface available seems to be the order of the day here, and the content of the images is much the same, albeit rendered in dangerously bright colours. We’re all for a bit of full-on crazy now and again and Lewel fills our quota for the week very nicely!

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    As the introduction to Clarks in Jamaica states – and it might surprise you – “Clarks shoes have enjoyed a cult status in Jamaica for at least sixty years”. The quintessential British brand has become synonymous with the reggae style and remains so, fed in the early years by enterprising characters such as Smithy, who began to buy up all the Clarks he could in Somerset, returning to Kingston laden with “all sizes, colours and styles of the shoe” – it was, after all, the Clarks name that mattered.

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    You could be forgiven for thinking these photographs are something not of this world; an unnatural, imaginative manipulation that simply introduces colour and scale to create a composition miles away from the usual. Here’s the thing though, these photographs are unadulterated, capturing the vivid splendour of Hutt Lagoon in Australia.

  7. Bunch-list

    Some people would suggest that the rebrand of a niche software company, specialising in developing tourism-specific business solutions, might be a little on the dry side. But they’d definitely be wrong, as Bunch design studio have recently proven. Creating a crisp new identity for ITI Computers and some of their best-selling products, Bunch have rolled out the new look and feel throughout a variety of print and digital media.

  8. Helmo-list

    French design duo Thomas Couderc and Clément Vauchez, or Helmo to their friends, have recently finished an exhibition at the My Monkey Design Gallery, showcasing some of their finest experimental poster designs. Renowned for their colourful side-projects as much as their clean-cut identities and straight-up graphic design, it’s no surprise that the work on show had an unorthodox flavour; remixing and distorting pre-existing pieces to create strangely engaging oversize works. Hypercool! (That’s French for excellent).

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    Fashions come and go, passing as quickly as my craze for tucking tracksuit bottoms into socks, wearing those whiter-than-white trainers while rocking the wet look hair – a somewhat brief and ill-advised fashion interlude I’d like to add! Well, thank heavens we can change and adapt, a principle not lost on Korean designer Jung Eunyoung, who responds to the adaptive nature of fashion and trendsetting by dressing furniture in a number of different outfits.

  10. Jeanjulien%e2%80%93list

    You know the feeling, you’re on the way to pick up the latest in smartphone technology only to find yourself overtaken by a host of bizarre-looking Wacky Races-style characters bent on preventing you from your goal. Try as you might there’s just no way to get to the shop in time to make that all-important purchase. COULD ANYTHING BE MORE INFURIATING?! No. Thankfully revenge rears its icy head with expert comic timing and makes everything ok. Actually this probably doesn’t sound all that familiar, but it is the premise to the Jullien Brother’s latest video for their band Niwouinwouin and is (obviously, it’s Jean Jullien) well worth a watch.

  11. Zulu-list

    As an illustrator it must be pretty great to have a constant source of artistic inspiration. For some people it takes a lot of reading, watching and researching to find good material from which to make work, but for Lynnie Zulu that inspiration flows freely, from her family’s heritage in Tanzania and the cultural quirks that gave her access to. Growing up in the damp, dark Scottish borders you’d expect Lynnie’s work to be reflective of her dour childhood surroundings, but it’s quite the opposite – brimming with bold, spontaneous brushstrokes and vibrant, tribal hues; the antithesis to a drab, celtic colour palette.

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    If, like me, you can’t pass a sign, flyer or packaging of any kind without having a good look at the typeface, you might have heard about Pencil to Pixel, an exhibition by Monotype which ran from 16th-23rd November and brought together “the past, present and future of a unique typographic institution.” The award winning brand communications agency Sea were responsible for the graphic identity for the show, but their work for Monotype didn’t stop there.

  13. In_progress_2012_richardsterret_list

    There are always times when a service or product succeeds with its aesthetic front but fails to deliver the information and functionality desired. So, what happens when your audience’s sole reason for visiting the website you’re responsible for isn’t for the design, but purely the content? This is a question Ben Terrett (Head of Design for the Government Digital Service) and Sarah Richards (Content Design Lead for Government Digital Service) have asked and then seemingly answered. Their solution;  to view content and design as the same thing. The website applying this principle is the single domain for the UK government GOV.UK, which marked the Government Digital Service’s first major project.

  14. Jmcn-list

    If you love Jon McNaught as much as I do (you don’t) you’ll be pretty freaking excited to know that he’s just released a brand new book through Nobrow Press. Dockwood is the biggest and most complex offering that Jon’s ever produced, with a larger format, more pages and more colours than he’s ever worked with before. What’s more he’s beefed up the content of his images giving them a visual richness while maintaining the beautiful simplicity of his narrative style.

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    It seems that every time I try and post a music video these days, director AG Rojas has done the best ones. We’ve covered a couple of his bangers this year already and since being named the UKMVA new director of the year it feels a shame not to give him another virtual high five. His latest for Purity Ring came out last week and is a surreal piggyback through numerous gloomy scenarios, none of which I can really grasp, but I get the impression that’s the point. Also, anyone who’s award ceremony acceptance speech consists of downing a whole bottle of whiskey (and surviving) can do whatever else they want in my book.

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    Sometimes very little needs to be said about the work we post; images can truly speak a thousand words. With this in mind, allow me to merely act as the waiter serving up a chef’s Michelin Star of photography. Steve McCurry’s Blue City photographic series was taken on the edge of the Thar Desert, India, in a place that was once the capital of a princely state – the mystical Jodhpur. Delve into this magical world and these stunning images. We cannot recommend visiting Steve’s website enough – incredible barely does justice to his vast gallery of images!

  17. Rodrigues-list

    Advertising creative and all-round nice guy Mico Toledo has had a little bit of time on his hands recently and rather than fill that void with computer games and over-eating he’s created himself a latino alter-ego who creates imaginary, mystical national parks from found postcards – he’s called Ricardo Rodrigues. Sounds VERY weird, but actually it’s only a little bit odd and ultimately brilliant.

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    The calendar is set and the show birds are in position. We even have an exhibition of what should aptly be described as grotesquely intriguing (Not quite the remit of Stephen Fry’s QI but we’ll go there all in the name of Things voyeurism). And just like the sandwich that doesn’t need any more sauce, we’re going to slap a ladle load of spiced gravy on top, wrapping things up with lovely illustration and art. Strap yourselves in people, Things are about to get real!

  19. Weekender-list

    This week was Thanksgiving over in the good ole U S of A and so The Weekender decided to make a list of the things it was truly thankful for. Unfortunately after several hours’ meditation on the subject it was left with a piece of paper with the phrase “jacket potatoes” scrawled in one corner, which was just a bit sad. So here’s some things the Weekender is kind of grateful for if you really twisted its arm – 1. Gin (delicious) 2. That lions are either quite rare or in zoos (scared of lions) 3. Table tennis (I’d beat you) 4. Gin (again) and 5. Laser Quest (makes an ace birthday party). Onto this nonsense…

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    We’ve featured product designer Demelza Hill’s work on the site before a few years back, showcasing some pretty brilliant reversible bags. We were impressed then but we’re even more impressed now, with the magnificent “Branch” — a wooden tree made just in time for Christmas that is both aesthetically pleasing and very beautiful two-fingers up to tradition. Demelza has also been busy creating a whole host of other new products since we last featured her, including resurrecting some scrap tools into desirable gifts, and making a pretty epic sofa out of tennis balls. #Bigfan.

  21. In_progress_2012_hellicarlewis_list

    If it’s pioneering digital and interactive work that tickles your fancy then you’re in luck as this year’s In Progress features Hellicar and Lewis discussing their boundary-pushing attitudes towards technology. In the last four years they’ve worked for the likes of Coca Cola, Intel, Uniqlo, TED and Nokia, producing everything from interactive retail spaces to 24-hour live webcasts that allowed viewers to collaborate in an ongoing musical event. With each new project they demonstrate that they’re consistently at the top of their game.

  22. Listimage

    The world can seem so full of hate at times, especially when we surf the comment sections on websites or browse lively debates taking place within the world of Twitter every second of the day. It’s something we all have come across, and in general it also seems we’re all a bit partial in telling some of these people to go and, let’s just say, do one. And so it goes on until it feels like we’re all doing one, using ever increasing levels of harsh, abusive language.

  23. List

    Versatility is one of the key skills that can help insulate a creative against the vicissitudes of the working world and so Alvaro Laura is really well-placed to flourish as he is able to turn his talented hands to such an eclectic range of commissions. Scrolling through his portfolio, you find that the Spanish born, Berlin-based illustrator moves effortlessly between the silly and the serious, the conceptual and the commercial.

  24. List

    Such is my mum’s obsession with the amount of heat you lose through your head that I’ve never really regarded hats as anything ore than functional temperature regulators. Well more fool me, because millinery is an artform steeped in fashion and culture, and Bernstock and Speirs have been at the height of the hat-game for 30 years now. To celebrate this milestone, a show at Fred (London) Ltd has brought together some of the best known creations of Paul (Bernstock) and Thelma (Speirs). The pair have made hats for the likes of French and Saunders, Kylie and collaborated with big names including Agnes B. and Jean-Paul Gaultier.

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    Everyone loves disco balls, right? It’s the way they make even the least prepossessing room suddenly, infinitely glitzy and sparkly and disco-y isn’t it? Well imagine the It’s Nice That podcast Studio Audience doing exactly the same thing, only it’s glitzy, sparkly, disco-y reach is aural rather than visual. Well then what the heck are we waiting for – let’s crack on with this week’s fun and frolics featuring the ITV rebrand, Ansel Adams, graphic novels. Oh and one of us SINGS! But you’ll have to listen to find out who. And why. Actually I still don’t really know why. Enjoy!

  26. Borstlap-list

    If you have a pile of cash sat in a drawer somewhere that you really don’t know what to do with then fret not because Louis Vuitton has just launched a custom monogram service for their small leather goods, allowing you to emblazon your initials, in colours of your choice, over your purse, wallet or document holder. Which is all well and good for the financially endowed, but for those of you with shallower pockets it’s the promotional animation from Christian Borstlap that will excite you the most.

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    As someone who has grown up in a household that included a father drumming to Phil Collins and a contemporary florist for a mother, flowers and music have always been thrust into my eyes, ears and nose. And now the Floral artist Azuma Makoto has fused these seemingly independent sensory entities, creating a project that explores their relationship. After spending time thinking about Distortion & Flowers, the fusion doesn’t seem alien in any way.

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    Using ink and a minimalistic style, Daehyun Kim has created a distinctive, individual identity with his drawings that mark themselves out as his own the moment any viewer spreads their eyes over them. And just like butter melting over warm toast, these drawings are elegant, simple and highly evocative. But let’s stop salivating, pull focus, and get to the jam.

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    Yeah you’ve probably been stopped dead in your tracks by this cover at least once in the last few weeks, but better late than never. What better way to say goodbye to the week than with this gloriously cute photo shoot by photographer Michael Hauptman for Wonderland magazine, and art directed by U S E F U L.

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    To give you an idea of the guy who made these creatures, here’s a little snippet of his bio: “Born 1948 in Scheveningen, Netherlands, studies physics at Delft University of Technology, 1975 – 1980 Paintings and drawings, 1980 Flies UFO across Delft, 1981 Flies UFO across Paris”.

  31. In_progress_2012_edwardbarber_list

    Excitement is growing here and not just because Christmas cheer is creeping round the corner! In Progress is almost upon us and our next speaker profile focuses on one half of the iconic design studio BarberOsgerby. We’re thrilled to be welcoming Edward Barber to speak about their design process – from brief to production.

  32. Jtmain

    Skimming through her impressively enormous portfolio, it becomes clear that Julia Fullerton-Batten’s famous images are a medley of alarm-bell bright colours, crowds and garish aspects of modern life. Add in the fact that she’s inspired by the transformation of girls to women and the differing attitudes towards this in contrasting countries, and you’ve got some pretty deep stuff to get your head around. Often using the artificial waters of the local swimming pool, or the ubiquitous British schoolgirl’s summer uniform, Julia’s compositions of primarily women and young girls is at once disturbing and familiar, but no doubt utterly original and incredibly impressive.

  33. Bendikkaltenborn-list2

    This might sound ridiculous but I feel like I’ve known Bendik Kaltenborn’s illustration for years, even though I only discovered him a week ago. The Norwegian comics artist produces work in a style that recalls a rich Scandinavian tradition of bright block colours and playful geometric characters, and yet is entirely his own. With a career that’s spanned nine years so far Bendik has an enormous portfolio of work, encompassing editorial illustration, witty comics and some terrifically playful poster design. He’s also a dab hand at screen printing. With all this incredible talent in the bag we have only one question to ask; Why has nobody commissioned him in the UK? Come on British publishers, get on with it!

  34. List

    Gather round children, come kneel at the feet of wise old Papa Alderson while I tell you about the early 1990s – a different time, a simpler time in many ways. The soundtrack was part acid house, part the rustle of our shiny tracksuits and the back-to-back figures in the Kappa logo seemed to herald a new era of cooperation. Cool Britannia was a pipe dream, and in 1993 Mrs Doubtfire outperformed Schindler’s List which seems troubling in retrospect. Excuse the misty-eyed reminiscing, but it’s really Daniel Evans and Brendan Baker who are to blame. Their superb Wet Look 93 for the latest issue of LAW magazine transported me right back o that era, time-travelling through the medium of wet look hair gel – that thick, electric blue substance that was always oddly cold to the touch.

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    If you fantasise daily about owning a south-facing studio full of design-related books, or heading through a Bond-like Mediterranean mountain tunnel on a motorbike, this porfolio may induce a special kind of envy. Coke Bartrina, from Barcelona, travels around sun-dappled streets taking photographs to accompany lovely novels about beautiful homes and studios full of talented creatives. Working with publciations such as Apartamento, Nylon and Hercules, Coke’s kind of got the coolest job ever. And judging from his personal work, he’s also got some very, very good-looking friends. Jealous much?

  36. Danielbuxton-list

    Let’s not beat about the bush here, sometimes a careful selection of bright colours is all you need to attract attention. As a race we’re drawn to shiny things more than we’d like to admit, cooing over bold colour schemes like magpies around a diamond. Combine that colour lust with some tight design and you’re on to a total winner. Which is perhaps why we’re so drawn to Daniel Buxton’s rebrand of 3 Fish In A Tree – it’s clean, simple, and features just the right amount of enticing hues to hold our attention for more than a few seconds. Which is all you really need from a piece of branding anyway. Nice job Daniel!

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    From the south coast to the northern hinterlands ring out the bells, It’s Nice That’s D&AD student brief is live! For the first time we are working with the creative organisation and we’re setting students a challenge quite close to home. Many of you will know that It’s Nice That started life at Brighton University, but as we’ve grown our audience has diversified massively and we’re delighted to attract readers from every part of the creative world, from excited freshers to creative directors feared and revered in equal measure.

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    It’s not often you get confronted with a body of work that have the visual equivalent of a cold glass of juice in the morning, but Frederik’s got it down. In his delightfully weird body of work, Frederik boasts fantastical hand-made sets complete with urine-based props alongside some very, very crisp high-end fashion campaigns. Not content on just getting beautiful models to do the visual job for him, Frederik shoves cigars in their mouths, paints horses on to them, or elongates their arms into big meaty tubes. Seeing a guy who’s this good at what he does but with a big element of “I’ll do whatever the hell I want” is refreshing, hilarious and very impressive. Read a fantastic interview with the man himself over on Zero One Magazine.

  39. Evan-robarts-list

    I make no secret of the fact that I’m perplexed by sculpture; I appreciate it aesthetically but often struggle to take away any of the conceptual ideas it purports to discuss. Maybe I’m a philistine but more often than not I’m just happy to stand and stare at objects that transcend the boundaries of organic and manmade and appeal directly to my senses.

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    Chickens can certainly rock a hairdo, strutting about the place feathered up to their eyeballs as though they’ve marched straight through Camden on New Year’s Eve. And Mitch Payne has found some of these proud, noble, fashionable little creatures that can sometimes – just like anyone on NYE after a few pints of the good stuff – be guilty of flapping and thrashing about the place. The Poultry Series captures these chickens wonderfully, epitomising their grace and dignity in the moments before, during and after take offs and the inevitable crash landings. Using a distinct backdrop to emphasise their spectrum of colours, Mitch has playfully transformed how we view the species of bird with the highest of all bird populations – the magnificent chicken.