Paper clips, graphic activism and fried eggs: it's April Things
- Ruby Boddington
- 2 May 2018
At the end of every month, we sit down and look through all the exciting bits and bobs which have been posted through our letterbox. From zines to posters and everything in between, the submissions never fail to surprise us, meaning we’ve got an eclectic collection of Things as ever to show you this month (try saying that five times over).
Although the weather in the UK was incredibly up and down in April, the quality of work you sent our way was consistently great. Below are our top picks, covering graphic design, illustration, photography, fashion and even product design.
Present & Correct: Clip Art
Before we dive into this month’s deluge of publications, let’s kick off with this item sent to us by Present & Correct only fuelling our obsession with stationary. Started in 2009 by two graphic designers, Present & Correct sells its own designs but also the designs of others and vintage items the duo discover on their travels. Presented in a foiled wallet, Clip Art contains 20 historical paperclips from 1897 to 1910 (two from each year) and was created in collaboration with Princeton Architectural Press.
Brodie Kaman: Shocking Wreck
Launched in Los Angeles in March of 2018, London-based graphic designer Brodie Kaman’s latest zine is a nod to American poet Franz Wright. Taking the words of Wright’s poem Alcohol (1998), the zine is Risographed in pink and teal and explores the designer’s own struggles with addiction and mental health.
Started by Kingston University BA graphic design students, Ross Norman, Max Rawlins, Sammie Purulak and Adam Morton-Delaney, Peep Publication is a celebration of creative side projects. “Creativity is in its purest form when it’s unconstrained. Without the pressure of work or study, we’re free to try, fail and try again,” Adam writes in the editor’s letter of Peep’s second issue, released earlier this year. Ranging from a photo series by Erik Kessels to the spray-painted works of art by Eike König, the work presented in Peep is diverse yet centred around a single theme: no work allowed.
La Police: Footnotes
Footnotes is a design periodical published yearly by La Police in Switzerland. Having released the first issue, Issue A in 2016, Issue B maintains the publication’s aim to provide applied research in type design. Issue A contained the first part of an article about the Haas Typefoundry Ltd, which is continued in this second volume. As its name suggests, Footnotes includes “full stories, not just clues,” and its 48 pages leave no stone unturned when it comes to providing insightful details on a variety of type-related topics.
Next up is the first instalment of Frowning Magazine with an issue dedicated to comfort zones. Founded and edited by Douglas Greenwood, with creative direction by Trackie Mcleod, Frowning is a “zine that captures he beauty of high fashion and culture at the moment it meets the radical talent of contemporary youth.” With a host of contributors, Comfort Zones features an interview (and cover) with Charlie Plummer: actor and face of Dior Homme on “the freeing nature of acting alongside Chloë Sevigny, and his intense admiration for the kind heart of River Phoenix.”
Luke Stephenson: The Ecstasy of Everything
The Ecstasy of Everything by Luke Stephenson is a collection of images, all pulled from Luke’s varying work over the past ten years. Originally from Darlington in the north east of England, Luke’s work encompasses animate and inanimate objects and has been published in The New York Times Magazine and The Guardian (among many other places). Exhibiting the photographer’s humour and affection towards his subjects, the zine features diptychs of fried eggs and birds, Jean Jullien and boobs…
Andy Walton and Gina Yu: Swirl Zine
Swirl Zine, written by Andy Walton and Gina Yu, with illustrations by Nate Kitch and designed by Studio Moross explores practised and positive ways of managing worry and rumination. Its content was “reviewed and discussed with principal clinical psychologists, mental health nurses, occupational therapists, service users and mental health advocates both in the US and UK.” With a bright and inviting design, Swirl is aimed at those who shun “unnecessarily long self-help guides” and offers advice such as: “Recognise the impermanence of all things including this present state of anxiety. Moving through it, rather than avoiding it.”
With a cover featuring Jenny Kee, captured by Beth Wilkinson (also its founder and editor), the first issue of Lindsay is a biannual print and online magazine celebrating the importance of culture and place. Featuring writers, photographers and artists from across the globe, Lindsay is named after Beth’s grandfather, Lindsay James Stanger. As a man who documented the world via a variety of analogue cameras, the publication echoes his approach to life: “with an open mind, a thirst for learning and a love for sharing stories.”
Published by People of Print, Posterzine is a mini-magazine which folds out to form an A1 poster. Having featured Risotto Studio, Colphon Foundry and Anthony Burrill, the 32nd issue of Posterzine highlights the distinctive shape and form of Camille Walala, alongside an interview with the acclaimed pattern designer. Using two tones of red in conjunction with blue, this month’s issue of Posterzine is as neat, simple an insightful as ever.
Phaidon: You Had Better Make Some Noise: Words to Change the World
“You had better make some noise,” is a quote from Malcolm X’s autobiography and lends itself to the title of Phaidon’s latest release. “Throughout history, every era has been defined by the protests that have overthrown dictators, opened minds and changed policies, or planted the first seeds of change,” reads the book’s accompanying press release. In what can only be described as a timely collection, You Had Better Make Some Noise brings together the words of social activists, revolutionaries, artists, writers, philosophers and politicians who have contributed to the fight for progress and freedom.
Princeton Architectural Press: Posters for Change
Continuing the theme of protest and rounding up this month’s Things is this collection of 50 removable posters, Posters for Change. With an afterword by Avram Finkelstein on the crucial role of graphic activism in the current political climate, the publication features 50 of the best (of more than 300) artists and designers from around the world who submitted work in response the 2016 US Presidential election.
About the Author
Ruby joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in September 2017 after graduating from the Graphic Communication Design course at Central Saint Martins. In April 2018, she became a staff writer and in August 2019, she was made associate editor.