Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The cover of Design Week (1st-7th July) features a DIYking beard - not unlike the ones from The Artic that you can make and keep as a souvenir from a perfectly normal week.

But wait, there's more: If you email us a photo of you wearing your beard, you may win something. We're not quite sure what yet, but there will be a screen print for the best photo + other goodies there's bound to be some stuff for the runners up as well - possibly something like this and possibly some strange objects lying around, so include your postal address in the email.

RULES rule
No purchase neceessary. If you don't want to buy Design Week, fake it.
Be as many or few as you want in the photo, props are allowed and encouraged.
Photoshop is definitely allowed, but this is not a photoshop contest and photoshop is just the easiest way out.
No sucking up.
Descriptions are allowed.
Deadline: 16th July

Judging criteria:
Viking awesomeness

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Daddy Jones's Lottery Eggs
If you've ever read the Moomin books you may remember that in "The Exploits of Moominpappa" they go to The Autocrat's party and that said Autocrat, who goes by the name of Daddy Jones, has organised a lottery.

The lottery is in the form of hidden eggs, each egg has a number on it and Daddy Jones then gives out prizes according to the numbers. Moominpappa is surprised to see that everybody get what they want, some get chocolate, Hodgkins wins a fret saw (fret saws feature a lot in this book) and Moominpappa himself gets useless stuff. This seems like magic, but Daddy Jones explains that he hid the eggs in a manner so that they would be found by the right people - He doesn't magically know what each and every one of them want, he just has an idea about the psyche of someone who looks for lottery eggs in plain view (They're lazy and want something edible) the more tricky eggs are found by crafty people, so these eggs are linked to tools, like a fret saw or other useful stuff and the last category is for the "outside the box" thinkers, the ones who look for eggs in the stream, they get silly things that only they see beauty in.

I'm not going to put a marketing slant on this, and I don't think you should either, just appreciate the beautiful mind of Tove Jansson.

In one or two days something exciting will happen here, so check back.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

What you haven't got.
When I grew up we didn't have much. We had enough, but my dad worked hard to make sure we had enough. I know that it was always on his mind that he couldn't let down his family and my mum made us clothes, kept the house in order and made ends meet.

What I had was my imagination. I would make my toys, I provided paper kit BMX bikes to the kids in the street - the kids that had laughed at the strange, thick paper that wasn't the graph paper they knew, their parents bought paper in the shops, my dad brought home these old stock-taking cards from work, but the thicker paper made excellent paper BMX bikes.

When you have little, you have to use your imagination and this, it seems, doesn't come naturally. This must be taught and it must be taught early because we need to change the thinking of the less privileged kids, we need to get:

"I haven't got what I want - I will have to make it."
instead of:
"I haven't got what I want - I will have to steal it."

And this responsibility belongs not to the government, the council or the schools.
It belongs to the family.

Friday, June 18, 2010

My job is becoming my childhood
Yet another Friday of amazing meetings! First up is a meeting with 30 kids about sea creatures and monsters, then I'm planning out a storytelling adventure-trail in a park - more and more often I get the question: Is this graphic design? And more and more often I push the panic button called: "It's visual communication, graphic design is just a method." I'm working of plenty, proper graphic design too, though.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Stream of consciousness design
Whoa. Got to work on a flyer design this morning, had the concept nailed and had an idea of what I was after, but then, after a hectic day, when it was done, I looked at it and it was a page from my sketchbook, only made in Illustrator. This has never happened before, but I have worked in my sketchbooks a lot the last couple of years and I've always thought that my work and my research where two very different things. This is another of those things that convince me that my questioning the quality consistency is the right move: Someone who sees what I did today, may not realise that it is my work even though it does have a "style".

(The next bit I deleted because it turned into mad ramblings about a design method that's like a dog running with a stick - and that didn't help anybody.)

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Lemons into lemonade
It seems that my Antlor system for Kensington Palace has been destroyed - but that is what I get for exhibiting an interactive paper model. I had anticipated this and was ready to produce a new version if this happened, only now I'm thinking that I'd like to replace it with another interactive work, with the More Money. So if all goes well, you'll be able to print money in a royal palace soon.

Friday, June 11, 2010

then we take Croydon

Off to Croydon in a few hours to steal ideas from kids - or rather, guide them to give us some input that we'll then turn into a piece for the Thames Festival this autumn. We'll be going through various things on communication, I'll be playing a sample of my beloved foghorn of Århus, and we'll do some inspector Morse code.

Sorry that the blog is lacking in interesting observations at the mo, but things are too damn busy, like yesterday when I designed a flyer for a well known Swiss army knife manufacturer - yet to be approved, made about 40 blank flags and constructed a Morse Code Remembering System.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

WARGH! my ride
This week I was teaching a bunch of graphic designers, the project was an exploration of typographic moviemaking. A hundred meters away, budding product designers were pimping rides and I was later asked to help judge these... things.

The winner was the Ford Viking ship. (Complete with wooden dash featuring stairs so you could access the stern.) Close second was the Warhammer-inspired junk-car that, for reasons I don't quite grasp had an additional porn themed interior.