Archive for the ‘Design & Type’ Category

Freedom Isn’t Free, People

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

The NY Times tells it like it is with this beautifully functional visual map of the Obama Administration’s 2011 budget proposal.

Be sure to click “Hide Mandatory Spending” to see just how little of the budget is up for discussion this year.

Magic Highway USA

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

This is just fantastic. It is at once prescient, naive, thoughtful, and simplistic:

Via Daring Fireball

Why You Care That Ikea Adopted Verdana

Sunday, September 6th, 2009

Ikea, after decades, has changed its corporate typeface. Its Futura look-alike, Ikea Sans, has been replaced by Verdana. If you shop at Ikea, start watching them, because changes like this one are often an indication of lost direction.

Samples of Futura and Verdana in the Ikea colors.


gogreengo remixes – Listen at Apothecary 9/10

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

Joseph Hallman, gogreengo, re[gogreengo]mix Megan Cauley, Peter (PONY) Celment, DJ Carl Michaels/Jamie Johnson, Kono Michi (Michi Wiancko), Paul Pinto

I recently finished up work on the album cover you see above. Composer Joe Hallman’s gogreengo has been remixed by Megan Cauley, Peter (PONY) Celment, DJ Carl Michaels/Jamie Johnson, Kono Michi (Michi Wiancko), and Paul Pinto. gogreengo is a hard album to pin down, and tends to be pretty abstract and probably isn’t for everyone, but it’s worth a listen.

Joe gathered some talented musicians to remix his work, and you can hear their stuff and meet them over phenomenal drinks at APO bar + lounge (it’s Apothecary, for those wondering). Make your way there around 5 on the 10th of September and join the fun.

I haven’t heard it all, but in doing my design research, I became fond of Kono Michi‘s music. Her vocals and violin work are quite interesting.

Letters & Ligatures: Something to PLINC About

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

I had to good fortune to kick off the weekend of the 5th by dropping by House Industries’ opening of their Letters & Ligatures Show at the 222gallery in Philly on Friday.


H&F-J’s Sentinel

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

A sample of Sentinel in use from H&F-J's website.

From their site:

“For everyone who’s ever wished Clarendons had italics, everyone whose favorite slab serif is shy a few weights, and everyone who’s ever needed a slab serif to thrive in text: we designed Sentinel for you.”

Sign. Me. Up.

While I don’t use Clarendon all that often, largely due to its limitations, it’s among the first typefaces that stuck in my mind as a student. Its strong slab serifs and sturdy curves have always resonated with my design sensibilities and aesthetic preferences. That H&F-J were the ones who decided to remedy this makes my designer heart sing.

Announcing Gothamudy Old Style?

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

ALERT: Secret typeface (possibly) under development revealed through Illustrator CS 3 bug: Gothamudy Old Style.

Possible Linotype/ Hoefler & Frere-Jones collaboration? Buy-out imminent? Unsubstantiated rumor or prescient techno-fortune-telling?


Syfy: Try Better

Thursday, March 19th, 2009

So, the Sci-Fi Channel is becoming Syfy. We could endlessly debate the merits of the name, the logo, and their new mission to stray from their core content (science fiction). But there are others, fervent individuals, who are doing this good work already.

What I would like to point out is what you see if you visit

(click to enlarge)

Why in the name of the sweet baby Jesus would you want your audience to read this branding nonsense and business strategy? Just take me to the site! So that I may partake of your content! This is akin to selling soda by describing to the consumers how, if they buy it, your shareholders will profit from the consumers’ complicity in reinforcing their brand strategy of stratifying them into targeted market segments.


Not their audience, for sure. This sort of business pornography nonsense is not only boring, it also breaks the illusion of the brand. It’s as though they’re reveling in their decision to shed the pretense of caring about their core audience and wanting to celebrate that fact with them. We’ll see how this works out for them.

Squeezed Out

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

It’s official: Tropicana is ditching the Arnell redesign.


It was a shoddy rebrand that ditched common sense and brand equity for a meaningless sub-brand update/unification project. You can see a side-by-side at Brand New here and here. I’m just happy they had the sense and fortitude to dump it. I wonder if what really made them do it was flagging sales figures or, more likely, an overwhelmingly negative response. Though we’ll likely never know. It makes them look so much more magnanimous to say they’re responding to consumer outpouring of love for the brand.


Winner of the Least Scary Font for Horror Movie Title Card Ever Award

Sunday, February 22nd, 2009

Serpent and the Rainbow!

I don’t remember the name of this kooky faux-African woodcut font (anyone?), but Taco Salad (kindly identified by Stewf) is the exact wrong typeface for this kind of thing. I typically see it attached to kid’s programs and ads for low-rent Caribbean packages. I’m having a hard time figuring out who thought this would communicate “scary” or “not featuring muppets”.