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Cloud_BREAK2

We wait patiently here in the Pacific Northwest for the clouds to break. Our gray winter skies can be monotone at best. We don’t get any more rain than my hometown of New York City, but we have long stretches of cloud cover and we say bye-bye to the sun for many a day. Yes, we get SAD (seasonal affective disorder); we are in essence starved for light. Waiting for the sun to break through is a great Seattle winter pastime, supplemented with drinking warm beverages, reading books and watching movies.

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There are some other very useful things that help the ‘winter blahs’…

•Take short walks

•See friends

•Get out of bed and stay active

•Don’t over eat

•Change the colors of your living and work environments (we can help with that)

•Communicate with bright designs (we can help with that too)

•Looking at photos of sunnier times (we took lots of photos this summer)

So look up, and if you’re lucky enough to catch a patch of blue… smile.

Design is reliant on new ideas. New talent is as valuable a resource as experience and mature talent. Students of design have tremendous insight… which in the real world sometimes is diminished and diluted. Not many of us find artistic inspiration from leg hair. But Mayuko Kanazawa, a 20-year-old student at Japan’s Tama Art University, decided black, coarse strands would make for a great type font.

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As she was thinking of ideas, she happened to glance at her friend’s hairy limbs when he was complaining of leg pain. That’s when her light bulb went on. She then went on to manipulate the strands to create the letters of the alphabet, which I’m sure was a painful experience for the cooperative guy. Not only did Mayuko develop a full uppercase font, but also did a delightful lowercase. Can we conclude that this is an original fetish font?

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I'm_Different-QUAD

I’d like to share a little bit about a personal project I’m creating, it’s called “I’m Different Press”. I’m designing cards and posters with unique and necessary messages of wit and inclusion. I believe in diversity… look around, it’s one of the greatest assets of America. I use messages of pride, inclusion, anti-bullying and acceptance in my graphics.

Our motto is be different and make a difference. These simple prints may begin a good conversation… what you say matters. Some of the proceeds also support non-profit groups who are making headway in equality rights and protecting youth.

If you have a moment visit my online shop. Be yourself with pride. Dare to be you. I would like to hear your suggestions for future cards and posters.

I can’t help but post a few of these, they’re delicious and preposterous! Concoctions whipped up by Andy Warhol, his mom, and Suzie Frankfurt. I couldn’t resist and just located a used copy, it should be here in a few days… in time for the holidays. The book condition described a stain on the back cover… I wonder from which recipe.

I’ll will post a few drawings of my Thanksgiving feast. If you do a food drawing we’ll post it here and make our own collective visual feast.

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This is what Barry Moser, the great book illustrator, said to a young artist. He is one of my visual heroes and I’d like to share this quote along with a Moser illustration appropriate for the upcoming holiday “spirit”. When you look at some of Barry’s work it can make you shiver with only the fight between light and dark.

“When I was young, perhaps around your age, I was bored in school, so I stared out the window daydreaming about being home with my dog or building a model. I had a problem with my eyes and didn’t read very well. It was embarrassing when I was called on to read aloud. Reciting my times tables was even more mortifying. I was the last to be picked to play ball at recess, but the first to be chosen to work on the Thanksgiving mural—drawing was the only thing I did well, and I did it at home hour after hour.

I did not go to kindergarten. I started school in the first grade and went six years to public school. Then I went to military academy in the seventh. My family was not rich, so it was a privilege to attend such an elite school. However, the academics were very demanding, sports were required, and military drill as mandatory—and there were no art courses. Not one. In fact, I was often disciplined for drawing, for “wasting my time.” My family wanted me to become a military officer or a medical doctor. Anything but an artist. My daddy told me that I could never make a living at art. But I persisted in spite of his discouragement and today I live a marvelously happy and comfortable life. So, my young friend never let anyone tell you that you cannot do something. You can. All it takes—and this is a lot—is the desire to do it, the persistence to learn how to do it well, the courage to stand strong when people around you are discouraging your dreams. And perhaps most important of all is being willing to fail while you are trying your hardest—but then to pick it up and start over again.”

—Barry Moser

TALL_building

Have you ever heard of the CTBUH?

Do you know what Vanity Height is?

To answer the first question, it is the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. A fascinating group which tracks the skyscrapers of the world. I can get lost in this subject, and be awed by these big towers made by little people, piece by piece. I imagine standing next to each slender edifice, staring up and then turning to see the world that bustles in the tower’s shadow.

If you have any curiosity about such things you may what to visit the CTBUH website which chronicles the top 100 skyscrapers. Wonderfully illustrated and organized, this makes for great armchair traveling. Travel the world, these days you will send much of your time in the United Arab Emirates to see the tallest.

This is a great database and fun, choose by many categories: country, status (complete, in-construction, visionary or demolished), function, steel, glass, precast, just to name a few.

Have you guessed what Vanity Height is… it’s that use-less space in today’s tallest. With the increasing trend towards extreme spires and other extensions of tall buildings that do not enclose usable space, the term Vanity Height describes it (the distance between a skyscraper’s highest occupiable floor and its architectural top).

What are Supertall and Megatall Buildings? The CTBUH defines “supertall” as a building over 984 feet in height, and a “megatall” as a building over 1,968 feet in height. Although great heights are now being achieved—in excess of 2,600 feet—as of July 2013 there are only 73 supertall and 2 megatall building completed and occupied globally. Thus the completion of a supertall building is still a significant milestone.

Calm_vs_Rage

We are designers and communicators by trade… working with people as diverse as people who dig for dinosaur bones, to tech geeks running the world from Seattle. Our clients have missions and we craft words and images to express the best of each client. And our designers have opinions too… for example we’re scared of guns on the loose. We design for companies, communities, people and causes. Good graphic design prompts you to think for yourself… not feed you answers.

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Another “quotester” by our designers. Thank you Josef Albers.

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hapi_collaborative-quotester

A collection of quotes to design by. Listening comes first, collaboration second, design follows, and the result is greater than the sum of the parts.

From the studio where I have been working these past weeks, I could (and still can) hear the voices of tourists as they pass by the balcony window. When I first arrived in Civita it was quite hot, in the high nineties, and during the Italian pausa between 1:00 and 4:00 pm, it was a welcome relief to take shelter inside the cool tufo building. Now in October, there are far less visitors, but in late August and early September school children were still on holiday and families were squeezing in one last vacation trip.

The heat did not keep the tourists inside. So as I worked I could hear the mingling of languages as visitors passed by my window—mostly Italian, but always with a smattering of English, German, French and what I think was Japanese. The words drifted into my room like a cloud…a word cloud.


Word clouds or “tag clouds” as they are properly called, became all the rage in the late 1990s as a feature of early personal websites and blogs. The form was used widely to visualize the frequency distribution of keywords that describe website content, and as a navigation aid. Before long, word clouds were being used to editorialize and visualize everything from Biblical passages to presidential debate analysis.

But the idea behind word clouds is not new. It could be argued that traditional maps were the very first rudimentary “word clouds” since the type size of the name of a city, region, or feature is represented relative to its population or importance.

Then there are calligrams, type or handwriting arranged in a way that creates a visual image that expresses the content of the text. Visual designers and educators have used calligrams as a visual means of expression for decades.

During my stay in Civita, I was looking for a way to convey the rich mix of both “hearing” many languages and seeking a way to describe how people experience this place. A word cloud/calligram seemed like the perfect solution. So beginning from that first week in August, I decided to track what I could hear outside my studio window. And so began my “map” of the most common words heard during one hour of the daily pausa when most “sensible” Italians were indoors cooking the midday meal and resting.

Obviously, what I could catch was dependant on my limited Italian, college French, and zero understanding of any Asian language. English jumped out at me without my having any say in the matter, and so my resultant Civita word cloud may be a bit biased in that respect. Simple observation, however, was all that was needed to determine that there have been far more Italian tourists in Civita than any other group these past seven weeks. That should most certainly provide a hometown advantage.

A recent visit to our nation’s capital brought many design delights: the museums, the pleasing feel of the Mall, the human scale of the buildings. . . and the delightfully named streets. But after a week of walking and looking, we noticed something unusual—there is no J Street in DC.  In all four quadrants, the street that comes after I Street is K Street.  What happened to J Street?

A little sleuthing and research brought up one theory: some folks believe that the city’s planner, Pierre L’Enfant, left out J Street as a slight to John Jay, the American statesman and first president of the Continental Congress. Legend has it that L’Enfant hated Jay for his 1794 Jay Treaty, an unpopular agreement that settled some sticky issues between the new Americans and the British, which seemed to favor the British. The French were mad too because as allies during the Revolutionary War, they were now were fighting Great Britain on their own. L’Enfant, as a French-born American, must have been doubly upset.

The only problem to this theory is that L’Enfant’s plan was finalized in early 1792, and the Jay Treaty didn’t happen until 1794. Another myth proposes that John Jay stole Pierre L’Enfant’s wife or girlfriend, but that also falls apart when you learn that Pierre L’Enfant was gay.  So there’s really no truth about the omission of J Street as a slight to John Jay.

So…back to why all the quadrants skip from I Street to K Street. The answer appears to be typographic! Back then, “I” and “J” looked very similar when written and were largely interchangeable, so there would have been major issues having two streets named the same. So J was left out, along with X, Y, and Z Streets.

In fact, our nation’s capital is a typographic hotbed. The whole network of east-west streets in the District follows an alphabetical pattern. After single letters are exhausted, the streets are named alphabetically with two syllables, then after those, it changes to three syllable alphabetical names, and then finally (only in the upper reaches of the NW section) streets are named after plants and flowers alphabetically (Aspen, Butternut, Cedar, etc). Of course there are exceptions, but generally the rule is followed pretty closely.

So there you go, the real reason why there’s no J Street is the solution to a design issue.

Well if I had the 104 million, maybe I would have made a bid yesterday in London. It’s a record for an art auction sale. He is one of my favorite artists, Alberto Giacometti. The “Walking Man 1” sculpture was cast from a study commissioned for the Chase Manhattan Bank Plaza in New York City but sadly it never came into fruition. The strider stands 6 feet tall.

Despite the efforts of the gallery guards at the Getty Museum last year… while I was vacationing in LA… I had to take a photo of my own of this standing woman. She’s beautiful. I cropped her torso in photographic segments to observe each curve and  captured as I moved up the sculpture with my mind’s hand. I saw a lot of beautiful women in the gallery that day, walking around her… noticing her… maybe not. No they were not thin necessarily or bronzed. But they shared a bond with the sculpture… something close to eternal.

Michael and I were watching a film the other day at the art museum (SAM) of Australian aboriginals, a clan of 27 doing a painting on heavy linen. The painting was almost the size of the floor of a small room. Out in a flat windswept settlement, the painters sat on the dirt ground around the canvas’s perimeter… all very squat. Dogs obediently watched on. They painted a communal journey of sorts—spirit and heritage that they coaxed out in contemporary media. The museum projected this movie onto the floor for viewing, giving you the artist’s perspective. Here are a few examples of paintings similar to what we saw in the gallery, and here is one (the bigger one) I imagined and drew after our visit. I think I’ll do a few more and see where they go. They would make nice scarves or book end papers.

Seattle_Public_LibraryI’ve been itching to say it since we started writing this blog… Seattle has the best library system in the US! Well just look at it, need we say more. The head librarian got everything single thing she and her committee asked for and more… and it came in under budget. The Central Branch is just the tip of the iceberg… which by the way it looks a little bit like when you approach it some city avenues… it’s only one of many newly constructed or refurbished neighborhood libraries in Seattle. Each environment is comfortable, user friendly and architectural inspiring. They all do an incredible business; each is a true community hub. Just look around it’s where the action is. They shuttle books around from one location to another at your whim with such efficiency… I think they put Amazon to shame.


This witch hazel tree blooms near our front door. This particular photo was taken last year… when snow rested on the pedals. I planted it a dozen years ago… true to form it grows very slow… come February it blooms scrawny long-pedal flowers. They smell sweet like jasmine. I wonder why some plants bloom in winter… what’s the design sense in that? Most flowers bloom in spring largely because they need to set fruit or seed and have it mature before winter.

In a nutshell… flowers first appeared on earth around 100 million years ago, Read the rest of this entry »

I may get a little silly here with the description of the different kinds of tea. This is only my humble opinion, but what the heck, enough has been written by everyone else on the subject. They for the most part dutifully stay on the prescribed script.

There are four main types of tea, which are white, green, oolong, and black. However the leaves of each kind of tea all come from the same Camellia sinensis tea plant, it’s the processing of the leaves that determine their “color”. The chart diagrams the process of how tea is made… it may be helpful to know. Read the rest of this entry »

Being designers we appreciate a good package, almost as much as what awaits us inside. It’s the drama maybe. Christmas wrapping paper has been in our designer lives since day one… so we have a fascination for these unfurling designs on commercial-grade paper.

We’ve assembled a small sampling from our Christmas wrap archive to share our enthusiasm this season. Funny thing… the wrapping paper has been saved, but who knows what the gift was in these colorful wrappings. Let’s open the flat-file and see what we’ve got…

left Our dear friends Sue and Marian were inspired by the rest of the “make your own” clan one winter, 20 years ago. Read the rest of this entry »

It would be great to be able to congratulate the designer of the Lego spruce tree, in production for 30 years. But I can’t. I’ve cast a wide net for clues, but it comes back empty. The designer’s story will remain shrouded, yet we can still cheer the elaborate form of green plastic. I think it must be lauded as a toy icon—one of Lego’s brand-defining moments—a sculptural wonder and an engineer’s folly.

Though in my search a story did emerge, more of a tale of lineage and predecessors, a timeline of a botanical oddity. If all things Lego enchant you, then you may enjoy this nice hike through the near-monochromatic forest.

Read the rest of this entry »

Look what my neighbors pulled off. This is a little bit of a Halloween recap, but it has to be mentioned on this blog. Kevin and Betsy across the street are masters in lantern making and of course a large gourd is a perfect form. The orange glow from a Jack-o-lantern is unique… nothing else communicates the same way as the candle light reflecting off pumpkin flesh.

Kevin took a Japanese saw and “sliced” clear through a hollowed-out pumpkin. Then the disks were restacked and set apart with toothpicks. I saw if from my window… not expecting it. “Look how wonderful, look what Kevin and Betsy did with their pumpkin” I said to my family. They came running. Some things on our street are now taken to be expected.

judgement_study

There are only six studies like this drawing by Michelangelo throughout the world today, done in preparation for painting his “Last Judgment” in the Sistine Chapel. Its quality is soft and smudgy due to the chalk used, and the purpose and fashion in which it was executed…it was a sketch.

Sketching is something we all have in common with Michelangelo… we have all sketched to communicate an idea, simple as it might have been. Everyone. Usually the communication works pretty well. If you have a more elaborate or artful message  to convey, chances are you will rise to the occasion and find yourself more technically able. This is something I truly believe.

We recently had one of these drawings on display here in Seattle. When Michelangelo was invited back to Rome by the Pope to paint the altar wall, the resulting work, his “Last Judgment,” was a truly original if controversial masterpiece. Read the rest of this entry »

NCOD-1

October 11 is National Coming Out Day, first held on October 11, 1988. This date was chosen for the annual event in commemoration of the 1987 March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights. It also marks the anniversary of the first visit of the AIDS Memorial Quilt to Washington, D.C.. National Coming Out Day is a time to publicly display gay pride. Many choose this day to come out to their parents, friends, co-workers and themselves. Read the rest of this entry »

wabi-sabi_cup

A part of our “word of the day” series.
We won’t post a new one every day, but you
get the idea. Give us ideas for new words.
Foreign and made-up words count.

Wabi-sabi is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete.

It is a beauty of things modest and humble.

It is a beauty of things unconventional.

The ideology of wabi-sabi is ongoing and has the need to be nurtured… as most natural systems do… or they become extinct. Saving this universe of beauty is elusive since wabi-sabi is not easily reducible to formulas or catch phrases without destroying its essence. Making rules or precisely practicing it is impossible… describing it is like holding sand in your hands.

Beauty can be coaxed out of ugliness. Wabi-sabi is ambivalent about separating beauty from non-beauty. Wabi-sabi is, in one respect, the condition of coming to terms with what you consider ugly. Beauty is a dynamic event that occurs between you and something else. Beauty is thus an altered state of consciousness, an extraordinary moment of poetry and grace.

Read the rest of this entry »

florence_1

This is the first of our “word of the day” series. We won’t post a new one every day, but you get the idea. Give us ideas for new words. Foreign and made-up words count.

.
flâ-neur (flä-nûr’) n. 1. From the French verb flâner which means to stroll; a term popularized by Charles Baudelaire and other less well-remembered French writers of the 19th century; “A gentleman stroller of city streets.” 2. An aimless wanderer. 3. Someone whose mind and senses are only stimulated by improvised rambles around the world.

coffee101

I’ve been reading that coffee is having its third wave in the USA. This time it speaks to traditional roots and the purists at heart (no flavorings, please). Portland’s Stumptown Coffee Roasters is now in Manhattan, and so the wave may span coast to coast.

I’m a tea drinker myself, but keep rowdy coffee drinking friends. A baffled friend asked me for a visual reference guide. Read the rest of this entry »

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I’ve been lamenting the end of summer. Well actually it’s more like building to a panic. Dahlias to the rescue! “It’s obviously not all over yet” they trumpet loud and clear… their pedals soft, lush and wild, shameless… with no fear. So many zany patterns and dahlia-dances in their specimen divisions. For near-sighted retiring bees they must look like the size of football fields. Read the rest of this entry »

I have a fundamental weakness in character… I can’t stay away from cookies if I see them. I go into a shop for ONLY a cup of tea, dedicated not to have a cookie… and what happens? I used to love to read to my daughter, “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie”. I’ve illustrated some of my favorite cookies in Seattle, and a few tidbits to tell why I love cookies.

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The one on the left is a sour cherry swirl by Tom Douglas, always nicely stacked in a basket at his shop called the Dahlia Bakery. The flower cookie with royal icing is from Seattle’s favorite Macrina Bakery. You see these in the shop in the Spring. Read the rest of this entry »

anthill_haiku

Walking on an Olympic mountain trail heading towards the Elwah Valley is a piece of big geological magnitude… not allowing for much notice of the smaller details. The sky finally clearing of clouds, with dramatic views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca emerging… turning vibrant and ultramarine. Just off the trailside, almost not noticing, stood an alpine anthill. Covered in dried heather needles, all gathered from nearby plants and placed meticulously. Read the rest of this entry »

orange_bandana

For our ongoing color series Susan Zwinger has contributed her poem in praise of burnt orange. Susan has collaborated with Partners in Design as both an accomplished illustrator and writer on interpretive displays.

Worldwide most humans love blue,
loose-hipped, easy nymph of the sky
and sea. Not me, when my life grows
tough, no blues in smoky dives.
I mix yellow’s sun with sheer
matadorian drama–
Russia, Mexico and China–
and run.

Read the rest of this entry »

sign_of_the_wine

Streets are the fibers of our complex woven cities. Along the fibers cling an assortment of messages, free-radicals of a sort, and visual stimuli. Eccentric and exotic signage is in every town. No far-away journeys necessary to find great things. This one deserves attention, a wine shop (European Vine Selections) spotted in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. They have great wines, all for good value… Doug is a great help.
Read the rest of this entry »

You call it pro bono, a phrase derived from Latin meaning “for the public good”… on top of that, without charging for it. But around here we call it “doing good”. It’s an apex of humanity. It comes in all forms… from simple random acts of kindness to giving your own blood. For a designer it often means offering visual communication skills to amplify a message that you believe in. Sometimes you identify with the cause, and sometimes it pushes beyond your usual comfort zone… helping in situations outside your comprehension. Here’s one we did for Safe School’s Coalition here in Washington State.

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Read the rest of this entry »

It doesn’t take much to impress with a summer dessert if you add a little story, plus something fresh off the vine or branch, and include enough elements so every mouthful has a different flavor. One more thing, somewhere in the mix include the all-American favorite, ice cream. I did this the other night.

It all started with spotting some prepackaged wafers in the grocery… a thin layer of caramel sandwiched tight between thin waffles. The disks were about 2 inches round and only an eighth-inch thick. I thought maybe this would make a good ice cream sandwich scenario. I made space in our freezer (the hardest part of this recipe) and arranged a dozen disks flat on a plate. With a small scooper I put a ball of vanilla ice cream on each wafer. I had already grated some crystallized ginger and sprinkled that on each ice cream ball. Then I squished a cookie wafer lid on each and put them back into the freezer.

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Out in the front of my house we have a small serviceberry tree. The other day a friend reminded me how good the berries were; how he sweetens his yogurt with them. Read the rest of this entry »

We each have our own color druthers, and our own color histrionics (the baby blanket color we were wrapped in). On the other hand, biologically speaking, we share some color ties (we head for the green of the savanna or we find red lips appealing). Emotions can run high when selecting a color with friends.

Color is half of my business discipline, also a good part of my visual pleasure in life. I’m entrenched in it. Swatches of it are hanging all around me. I love it when color flashbacks recall a story, and I don’t believe we dream in black and white.

Do you have the same color passions? I would like to hear what you see in a color palette. Pick a color, any color. I’ll start with the first color… pink. Let’s make a pageant of colors right here. Represent your color in any way you would like. Write it here, comment on it below, or if it’s a visual statement send it to my email address and I’ll post it. Invent a color, or let’s change the meaning of flags.

pink

There used to be a TV show on when I was a kid, it was called “Make a Wish”. It had an unchanging format that held me in rapture. The show would take one word, like fish, and then literally take it around the world! “I wish I were a fish then I would swim in the ocean that is created by rain, that came from the clouds etc, etc”. Total stream of consciousness stuff. Tom Chapin, Harry Chapin’s brother, appeared at the beginning of the show, asking the question that would open up a whole world of knowledge and fun: “Did you ever wish you were a ___?” Read the rest of this entry »

loving_day

Mildred Loving was the wife of a bricklayer. Richard and Mildred married in Washington DC and lived in Central Point, Virginia… where their particular marriage was unlawful. They were awakened in their bed in the middle of the night with the glare of flashlights turned on them by local authorities. The year was 1958. Mildred’s “crime” was she loved and married a white man. She was part black and part Indian

In 1963 she wrote in neat script on a piece of lined loose-leaf paper a letter to the A.C.L.U. for help. Their lives hung in stasis during long trials, until 1967 a ruling written by Chief Justice Earl Warren declared “the freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men”

After the landmark ruling, the Lovings turned down all public appearances. Mildred never considered herself a hero. She lived out an ordinary life, happy marriage, 3 kids, a home near family. But Richard died young in a highway accident, killed on the spot. Mildred lost her left eye in the crash. She never remarried, never considered it. Read the rest of this entry »

hylebos

Next time you’re strolling through a concrete and brick air-conditioned mall in a booming community near a major metropolitan city, imagine a stream—older than anything above the ground—flowing under your feet. That’s the story of Hylebos Creek and the West Hylebos Wetlands Park. And the Commons Mall in Federal Way, Washington is only one of several locations where the creek travels underground beneath communities south of Seattle. Ultimately, it empties out into Puget Sound’s Commencement Bay.

It may sound trite and overused, but there is nothing more well-designed, to my mind, than a diverse ecosystem and the West Hylebos Wetlands provides a perfect example of this natural design in action. Read the rest of this entry »

Interested in a garden photography swap? Email me (stephen at pidseattle dot com) your best jpeg photo and I’ll post them in our special garden Picasa album. I promise to water and weed. At the end of the summer, they’ll be a prize for the best in show… your choice of a selection of Territorial Seeds or a spiffy watering can.

Feel free to attach comments and locations. To get started, here’s my contribution of a Oriental poppy… fading like a rumpled party dress at the end of a whirlwind evening. Visit the album... it’s just starting.

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remedy_tea

Even in Seattle, the coffee saturated town that it is, there’s still a case to be made for tea. Coffee—the palate-numbing, strong-tasting beverage—basically comes in one color unless you doctor it up, and lots of buzz… what can I say. In color alone, tea has me hooked. Infinite shades of green, yellow, red and brown, grays and whites. The tint itself is artful. Like an oyster that reflects the taste of the bay it cultivates in, tea is imbued with the flavors of the hillside it sprouts.

At the end of a great meal, what’s better? There’s a choice, to coddle the lingering flavors of beautiful things past… or to ingest a depth charge of bitter, head-spinning coffee? Sadly if you’re indulging every-day addictions to coffee, tea will never live up to the challenge and convert you. Wish I could help. It’s a developed taste that you will not regret. Read the rest of this entry »

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So this is the topic of this blog spot… the ever-expanding… ever-bulging… or pure absence of design in our world. It’s a subject of rags or riches. Or is it? All lies! If humans have been around long enough, design is there. It’s there and it’s wonderful to see and figure out and talk about endlessly. As designers, we’ve done our share of making design a little easier to understand, to convey a message of importance, or folly… in the end to make a good impression. These days, hopefully with a lot less waste, but not any less fancy.

We thought it might be interesting to pull out a little design sandpaper and start scratching the surface of the myriad of things we’ve been looking at, eating, spending time doing, reading, listening. We unabashedly love design and have utopian thoughts about all of it. You’re invited to challenge or take-away a few things we’ve learned and add your own perspective. Design is the skin over just about everything… so very few things are off-topic here.

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