Vintage punk rock flyers get swissted

Hey, remember when Jack Black and Mos Def sweded VHS movies in Be Kind Rewind? Well, Swissted is kind of like that, only with punk gig flyers…

Hey, remember when Jack Black and Mos Def sweded VHS movies in Be Kind Rewind (2008)? Well, swissted, an ongoing project by NYC based designer Mike Joyce, is kind of like that…

Only, instead of recreating feature films in a low-fi fashion, he recreates punk rock gig flyers as Swiss style posters. So basically he is taking the punk out of punk, and what could possibly be more punk than that! Odd, but brilliant. (As a loyal supporter of both punk rock and typography, this is right up my alley.)

The number of flyers Mike has swissted is nothing short of astounding – at the time of writing this there are over 200 examples in the gallery! Of course he also has some rules: all posters are 35.5 inches wide by 50 inches high, all set in berthold akzidenz grotesk medium, all lowercase and all the shows actually happened.

Here are but a few examples:

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Swissted

Little Printer – your personal mini newspaper machine!

You remember a while back I wrote about how London based design agency BERG redesigned the common sales receipt? Well, guess what, that was really just a sneak preview of what BERG has really been working on for the past year…

Wow, this has got me all excited, because it’s not often that an invention comes along which just seems way too cool to be real.

You remember a while back I wrote about how London based design agency BERG redesigned the common sales receipt? Everyone thought it was a cool idea and all, but that it could probably never be implemented in real life… Well, guess what, that was really just a sneak preview of what BERG has really been working on for the past year – they call it Little Printer:

Berg London announces Little Printer and Berg Cloud

If you can’t see the video below, click here to watch it on Vimeo.

Just when you thought print was dead, this wicked little device emerges to combine retro technology with cloud computing.

Little Printer lives in your front room and scours the Web on your behalf, assembling the content you care about into designed deliveries a couple of times a day.

Little Printer holds a compact, inkless, thermal printer. Its zero-configuration wireless connection to the Web lets you place it wherever you have a power outlet.

Graphic design is at the heart of everything Little Printer delivers, making the most of connectivity and print combined. Rendered in crisp black and white these tactile publications take visual cues from traditional halftone lithography and modern pixel art.

Berg London announces Little Printer and Berg Cloud

Berg London announces Little Printer and Berg Cloud

Berg London announces Little Printer and Berg Cloud

Berg London announces Little Printer and Berg Cloud

You subscribe to the “publications” you wish to receive from your iPhone or Android smartphone. BERG has already partnered with influential content providers like Google, FourSquare, Nike, The Guardian and more.

Right on time Little Printer gathers everything it needs to prepare a neat little personalised package, printed as soon as you press the button.

Berg London announces Little Printer and Berg Cloud

Berg London announces Little Printer and Berg Cloud

A second and equally important announcement is BERG Cloud, the online technology which will compile your personalised mini newspaper and wirelessly communicate it to Little Printer through a “bridge unit”.

The announcement of Little Printer is accompanied by a beautifully designed website where you can find out more and sign up for updates on the project.

Pre-orders for Little Printer will open in 2012, when it launches as in ‘beta’. Added to the wishlist!

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Hans Gremmen of Amsterdam procured this great set of Lucha Libre posters from a letterpress print shop in Mexico City in 2009. Hard to believe that an outdated printing technique can trump the efficiency of digital production in the 21st century. Here’s the proof…

Hans Gremmen of Amsterdam procured this great set of Lucha Libre posters from a letterpress print shop in Mexico City in 2009. I find the following account from Hans truly amazing:

The frequency of these fights is high, which means that new posters are made nonstop. The process of making these posters is therefore very efficient. The technique (letterpress) can provide this efficiency. There is no digital process, no plates, no pre-press. All the fonts, illustrations, sponsor logo’s, lines are already available in the workshop; they only have to be placed in the right order. The printer compiles the posters on the press himself, using these prefab materials. The colours (mostly rainbow-print) are also mixed on the press.

Hard to believe that an outdated printing technique can trump the efficiency of digital production in the 21st century. Here’s the proof:

The posters:

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

The setup:

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

The metal pieces are placed in position on the press.

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

A large selection of luchador masks ready to be placed in the composition on the press.

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

The ink is mixed and printing is a go!

Lucha Libre letterpress posters from Mexico City

Done. Maravilloso!

The quest for an average font

The fascinating explorations in finding an average of all existing fonts has lead different people down different roads, here are some examples…

In September 2011 Viennese designer Moritz Resl published a typographic experiment called Average Font on his website. The project received widespread attention on the internet, drawing both criticism and praise. The idea is to show what a font would look like if it were made up of all the Typefaces on his system at the time. Resl achieved this by layering over 900 different fonts each with a low opacity, one on top of the other. The result is a blurry, yet recognisable rendition of each character:

Average Font by Moritz Resl

As Stephen Coles of Typographica points out, the quest to find an average font is not unexplored territory. In 2006 visualisation expert W. Bradford Paley from New York put together an exploration of Face Variations, layering the outlines of 166 fonts in different combinations. Paley notes that this stems from his fascination with finding the “perceptual boundaries” around objects such as letters:

Face Variations by W. Bradford Paley

Another approach comes in the form of The neutral typeface – the result of a 2005 graduation project by Dutch designer Kai Bernau entitled Neutrality. The measurements for the design of the typeface are derived from averages reached by comparing popular existing sans serif typefaces:

The neutral typeface by Kai Bernau

The latest arrival at the average font party is Avería, a font released in October 2011 by Dan Sayers combining 725 existing fonts. Sayers explored different methods, eventually opting for a programmatic approach to the task by splitting each letter perimeter into hundreds of equally-spaced points, then finding the average between the corresponding positions of each:

Avería by Dan Sayers

Avería by Dan Sayers

Also take a look at Font Path Viewer, a web app Sayers built in order to view the outlines and control points of fonts during his process.

Fonts come in an endless array of personalities and proportions, weights and styles. Maybe it is the sheer overwhelming variety, or maybe our inborn desire to simplify and reorganise, but whatever the reason may be, people seem to be captivated by the idea of finding a neutral average. The search continues.

MoMA’s in-house design studio

The Museum of Modern Art in New York City has a very productive in-house design team with a bulging portfolio of exhibition designs, advertising campaigns and other printed materials…

The Museum of Modern Art in New York City (MoMA) has an in-house design department very practically named The Department of Advertising and
Graphic Design
.

They are responsible for exhibition designs, advertising campaigns and any printed materials needed by the museum’s numerous departments including curatorial, education and visitor services.

If we learned anything from the career of Wim Crouwel it is that working for a museum provides fertile ground for typographic exploration. The MoMA team’s impressive portfolio suggests that this is indeed the case:

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

MoMA Department of Advertising and Graphic Design

Interactive type design game

Hey, remember that kerning game from a couple of weeks ago? Well there’s a new game which is a little more challenging: Shape Type.

Hey, remember that kerning game from a couple of weeks ago? Well there’s a new letter shaping game, also created for Method of Action by Mark Mackay.

What is the point of these games? Well, it’s not quite clear to me, but Method of Action claims to be launching a design course for programmers soon and their blog hints at the possibility that these games will be playing a role:

When Method of Action launches, you’re going to need at least 90/100 to pass this mission, so get practicing!

In my opinion shaping letters is a little more challenging than kerning. The characters are all from well known typefaces, so the result is much less subjective than that of the kerning game. Success depends heavily on your ability to recognise aesthetic correctness of a character’s curves, so give Shape Type a whirl and see how you fare. Oh, and don’t forget to Tweet your score!

Shape Type - a letter shaping game

Lovely posters letterpressed by Typoretum

Letterpress is essentially the very earliest method of printing text, invented by Gutenberg in the 1400s. Print shops like Typoretum are reviving this old fashioned art…

Typoretum is a print shop located in the small town of Coggeshall in Essex, England. They specialise in the old fashioned art of letterpress printing.

Letterpress is essentially the very earliest method of printing text, invented by Gutenberg in the 1400s. A print is created by inking reversed movable metal or wood type and then pressing it onto paper using a wonderfully complex machine.

Part of the novelty of letterpress prints are their tactile nature – the “bite” of the raised letters leaves a slightly embossed impression, and due to the manual work involved no two prints are exactly alike. These qualities have caused a recent resurgence in the popularity of this archaic printing technique.

Take a look at these nice letterpress posters for sale from Typoretum, and the snapshots of the process behind them:

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Letterpress posters from Typoretum

Jack Daniel’s label update – part two

About four months ago I mentioned that the Jack Daniel’s label design was being updated. Well, here’s the latest on the subject…

Remember about four months ago I mentioned that the iconic Jack Daniel’s label design was being updated?

Jack Daniel's label redesign by Cue

Well, Cue, the agency responsible for this daunting task, updated their website earlier this week with a case study and details of Jack’s new look. Here are a couple of their thoughts on the redesign:

The brand’s values are timeless, but like every great brand, it needed to evolve to maintain its strength and affirm its authenticity. We evaluated the equity of the brand elements, then edited carefully to clarify their meaning. The new label maintains a balance of filigree, iconography, and special typographic elements, in black and white with a touch of silver.

New Jack Daniel’s label:

Jack Daniel's label redesign by Cue

A closer look at details of the packaging applied to the new chiseled bottle shape :

Jack Daniel's label redesign by Cue

Jack Daniel's label redesign by Cue

Jack Daniel's label redesign by Cue

Jack Daniel's label redesign by Cue

Elements of the updated identity system:

Jack Daniel's label redesign by Cue

Jack Daniel's label redesign by Cue

An important accompaniment to the new design – The Jack Daniel’s brand guide:

Jack Daniel's booklet by Cue

New Jack Daniel’s is also introducing a new product, Tennessee Honey, which features a unique design incorporating the traditional brand elements :

Jack Daniel's Honey label design by Cue

Jack Daniel's Honey label design by Cue

Found via Allan Peters.