Archived entries for design

Putting this here so I don’t forget about these beautiful things:

Via Yewknee:

This gallery of Yugoslovian monuments is a feast for the eyes but, even better, if you read through this thorough explanation of their past you will get a little treat for the brain. The diversity of the designs is impressive and the motivation behind their initial construction makes their neglect even more poignant.

One more…

This was on my hard drive, so I think I found it at some point last week.


Masks like this one were worn by British crews in tanks during the First World War. The leather mask is shaped to fit around the eyes and nose and the chain mail was used to protect against splinters from explosions as the tank came under fire. Life inside these primitive vehicles would have been extremely uncomfortable as well as dangerous. Tanks were introduced in 1916 but were initially slow, difficult to manoeuvre and had little firepower.


This weekend was the first 48 hour Memphis Music Launch, presented by the Memphis Music Foundation, EmergeMemphis and the Launchpad – basically a whole bunch of nonprofits dedicated to improving Memphis.

The concept was that people could pitch any kind of music or business music idea to the other participants. Then, 8 pitches would be picked to have groups work on that idea for 48 hours, presenting at the end of the weekend. From there only four groups would move forward to a showcase show at the New Daisy in July, with the winner getting a record deal and other awesome prizes.

Laurel did a lot of the collateral design work for the project at Archer, and thought that it might be something fun for us to do. You know, do some design work, maybe build a website for a band that needed work.

Like all of our Bad Ideas, this ballooned into something much bigger than we expected.

We ended up working with a group of 8 musicians who were strangers on Friday, and by Sunday were making music that I really feel represents the modern diversity of Memphis and America as a whole. We named them The Delta Collective, and ended up taking over all of their marketing/legal/business research while they got to the business of writing and recording.

And my God did they knock that part of it out of the park.

At then end of the weekend, we presented the band, their music and all of the planning we’d done. I took over the business end of the presentation, and from the audience feedback, we were the best of the bunch.

I’ll never forget when the judges came back after their deliberations.

“Now, here are the winners in no particular order…
The Delta Collective…”

So, they’re moving on to the showcase in July, with L and I acting as publicists/shepherds/managers/enablers.

You can check out the final product at the website we built:

That’ll also lead you all of our social media stuff, too.

We’ve got 90 days to do as much as we can with these guys, who were, just 48 hours ago, total strangers.

No idea what’ll happen in that or beyond that, but at least for the weekend, those six people and the two of us had our lives changed for the better.

I just wish I could have a weekend after that weekend. Our yard needs to be cut badly, ha.

The Map of Metal

Click. Go. Now.

This is fan-fucking-tastic.

Anti-pollution poster (Kenji Ito, 1973)

Via Pink Tentacle.

And, yes, I know there’s a slight nipple. But, if you’re really worried about such things, you probably shouldn’t be visiting a place like this during your work day, should you?

Growth – Life Science Library, 1966

Prince Lighters, 1974

(This guy reminds me a lot of Jack Terricloth.)

From the best blog on the Internet, Pink Tentacle. There are more at that link. Do yourself a favor, go check them out.

Doctor Who: Journeys Through Time 1963-2010

Click for big. No, really, if you’re a Who fan, click. Click now.

From Wayne Dorrington via Jen.

There’s a whole series of these, all of them referencing pop culture and classic art.

And all of them are awesome.

I’m telling you, Pink Tentacle is absolutely amazing.

L made a banner ad for The Great and Secret Thing.

If you’ve got a site or a blog or a public porn repository with a little bit of space, think about giving this a home, would you?

This is the Orbitron.

Just look at it. Look at those lines. Look at that bubble top. Look at those headlights.

Those red, blue and green headlights that were focused to combine and make a single beam of white light.

This was the goddamned car of the future.

It was a one-off custom car designed by custom hot rod legend Ed Roth (creator of the Rat Fink character) and Ed Newton. Unfortunately, the car was deemed a failure when it was debuted, Roth attributing it to his choice to cover the beautiful painted and chromed engine, as well as to the Beatles. He stated that people were now buying guitars instead of cars.

Ultimately, the car was sold to another custom enthusiast, then to a series of private collectors. It was rediscovered in 2006 outside of an adult bookstore in Juarez, Mexico. After some finagling, a new collector was able to purchase the car and fully restored it, unveiling the reborn Orbitron in 2008.

More information and pictures are here at Kustomrama.

Been wondering what’s going on with my other site, The Great and Secret Thing?

We’ve been busy rebuilding it from the ground up to make it easier for the user to find content on, and then vote on what they like best. In a few weeks we’ll be rolling out new user tools for anyone what wants to contribute to the site.

Here’s part of what I said about the new design:

The redesign itself was done by Laurel Amatangelo, and coded by me off of the WP-NewsMag theme. The last design of the site was about old libraries, hidden tomes, and secrets. This one is about a dusty, traveled letter, read, reread and passed through many hands. We’re still The Great and Secret Thing, but we’re no longer gnostic in our secrets. Now it is all about sharing each of our secret talents with the world.

Hope you all like the new site, I know I do.

Oh, and go vote for some stuff.

The ending credits from A Series of Unfortunate Events. Probably the best motion graphics sequence I’ve ever seen.

Pity the movie wasn’t as good.

They are the mascots of the 2012 London Olympic Games. They have their own page explaining what in the hell they are here.

Really, the only thing that needs to be said about these guys my friend Tim said to me when I showed him these two:

shit i wish i could do mescaline and design mascots like these dudes obviously did

Truth from the mouth of babes.


Lead to this:

So, I was watching Fringe last night, and I don’t know if any of you have ever seen the show before, but it is basically a CSI meets X-Files procedural drama where all the bad guys are science based. The over-arching theme to the show is that science is advancing so fast that we can’t control it anymore. In essence, the Singularity is the villain of Fringe.

After the show was over, I was thinking about the Singularity and how one could explain it in a simple visual metaphor. And I came up with this:

Now, that’s just a rough sketch I did in a few minutes in Illustrator, but I think the visual statement is pretty clear if you understand the concept of the Singularity. The spiral is time, with the past being the edge of the spiral, and the center of it being the future. We’re some where in the medium length bands right now, I’d imagine. The red lines are epoch demarcations. Every time you cross a red line with the time spiral, you’re making the jump to the next technological epoch.

What I’m hoping the image conveys is as you move forward in time, you’re jumping epochs faster and faster. Toward the heart of the spiral, you’re clearing a dozen epoch jumps in the time it took you clear one on the outer edge.

I need to find some way to make it more aesthetically pleasing, but I think the core concept is there.

Poke around my blog some more if you aren’t sure what I’m refering to when I mention the Singularity. This post is a good place to start.

I have recently found myself in the incredible, yet unenviable position of having to turn out a complete concept document for the mechanics of a persistent world game by the end of the week. Pretty much by myself.

For those that have no idea what I’m talking about, look at it this way: I’m basically giving myself voluntary ADD. There are a million and half moving parts that make up a persistent world game, and in the initial concept document you bounce from one to the other at a rate that makes your head spin.

One of the core elements in this game is a player driven economy based around crafting, so I figured that would be a good place to start laying down tracks. Crafting is a fairly straight-forward system after all. Raw materials, recipes, and player production. Yeah, right. Before I had gotten done with the first page of notes, I had a dozen separate documents open on my screen into which I was dropping notes on tangential aspects of the game.

The first question with crafting is what are players making. Which means I need to know what items are like. So, I have to start thinking about how items are used in the game (track jump 1), the different types of items (track jump 2), how items are gained (track jump 3), how items are stored (track jump 4) and how items are traded (track jump 5). Thinking about how items are gained leads me into combat and conflict goal questions (track jumps 6-15). Thinking about how items are traded leads me into questions about how players communicate (track jump 16), and how players and NPCs communicate (track jump 17). Thinking about players and NPCs leads me into a faction system (track jump 18) which folds back into the conflict goal questions (track jump 19). Oh, then my brain slides back into thinking about items and how we’ll have to have vanity items that provide only aesthetic changes to player avatars (track jump 20).

I think there are probably a few more jumps in there, but you get the general idea. Persistent world games are so big, and my head can only focus on a few parts of it at a time. Ideally, this would be done in a conference room with a half dozen whiteboards spread across the room to scribble ideas down on. Building worlds like that is very organic, building worlds like this is inviting mental prolapse. But, our team is spread all over the country, with a few in the UK. We’ve got to use virtual spaces instead of real ones.

That being said, I love every damn second of it and wouldn’t give it up for anything.

After all, I can sleep when I’m dead. (Or when the LHC destroys the whole damned world.)

War of the Worlds

A huge collection of book covers from HG Wells’ War of the Worlds can be found here. I picked one of the simpler covers, but there are some pretty outrageous interpretations of the book in cover art form. One of which makes use of the Enterprise from Star Trek for some reason.

Via i09.

Just throwing these in here as mental fuel. I love the music and graphics of both of these pieces.



Edit: Well, that was damn weird. They just took them both down. Replacing them with two new ones.

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