New York

New York, New York.

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Illustrator and designer Remko Heemskerk has created a series of prints dedicated to New York City. The style is reminiscent of 20th century travel posters and poster art created by the WPA in the 1930’s and 40’s. Flattened and stylized with just enough detail. Limited, but bright color pallets that keep the images vibrant and fun. The series shows the wide range of architectural style prevalent in the city, some iconic others commonplace, all of them making up the whole of the city. The prints are available for purchase in a variety of sizes at inPrint if you are so inclined.

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Paris / New York / Split Screen.

 has taken a creative and effective way to capture two of the greatest cities in the world, Paris and New York. The video below was shot on his Canon 5D Mk III and edited together in a split screen format to show the similarities and differences of these two modern metropolises. Using realtime and time-lapse sequences MATEL stitches the two cities together with images that merge, intersect, and juxtapose each other. I couldn’t find any information on the editing and post processing techniques used to finish the film. I’m thinking it was pretty straight forward since it was all shot on the same camera and edited by one individual. Once a gain a simple yet powerful and creative idea beats special effects and heavy post processing. Enjoy.

The Iconic NYC Transit Authority Graphics Standards Manual Reissued.

By the mid 1960’s the New York subway way finding system was a visual mess. It was a mix of signage and styles with no apparent order to any of it. In 1967, the New York City Transit Authority asked designers Massimo Vignelli and Bob Noorda to design a uniform identity and way finding system for the subway that would give riders a sense of direction that was easy to follow and use.

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Completed 3 years later in 1970,  was the NYC Transit Authority Graphics Standards Manual. This was the way finding system bible that became the face of the subway and is still in use today. Vignelli and Noorda gave us everything from color-coded route discs and line routes to the modernist sans-serif typeface ( the original font was Standard Medium, later switched to Helvetica) This design bible was distributed to designers, sign makers, and anyone else who needed help in designing, styling, and building a piece of the subway’s identity.

This iconic piece of work became a design classic in it’s own right, known to pretty much anyone that has studied or practiced design in the last 40 plus years. The manual was never intended for public distribution or consumption. Over the years as the NYC Transit Authority Graphics Standards Manual was updated and revised to meet changing needs and habits, fewer and fewer of the original copies remained. Many of the original copies found their way to a landfill or were lost in locked closets and cabinets within the many NYC Transit Authority offices.

A few years ago, two designers for Pentagram’s New York office, Hamish Smyth and Jesse Reed, found a single copy. Knowing the importance of what they had they  digitized the manual, and now they’re reprinting it with the blessing of the MTA for a very limited time. For the next thirty days, you can purchase a copy of the 1970 NYC Transit Authority Graphics Standards Manual on Kickstarter. Pretty cool, and yes I’ll be buying one.

Paul Trillo’s “Living Moments – Lumia Arc of Wonder”.

To promote the camera in the new Nokia-Microsoft Lumia phone, filmmaker Paul Trillo constructed a custom arc that held 50  Lumia 1020 phones. The phones were controlled by an app running on the new Microsoft Surface Pro tablet that was able to fire all the phones at the exact same time. this allowed Trillo’s team to then composite all of the images into a single film. The film showcases the New York street scene with a unique perspective that turns over repeatedly through the duration of the short. Below is is the finished film, plus the behind the scenes reel which gives additional insight into the process and vision behind “Living Moments”. Once again, the making of is in many ways more fascinating than the final film for me.

 

Paris vs New York by Vahram Muratyan.

French graphic designer and illustrator Vahram Muratyan has created a set of wonderful flat, minimalist illustrations for his blog and a new book titled Paris versus New York. The series is a comparison between two of the greatest cities in the world, and offers a unique look at the cultural and cosmetic differences between the two. Vahram started by originally posting illustrations such as baguette vs bagel or Eiffel tower vs Statue of liberty up on his blog parisvsnyc which became popular enough that he has released 3 books of the comparisons. The illustrations are also available as framed prints up to 28 by 36 inches in size.

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Donald Judd’s Standing Writing Desk.

Every now and again I get email that should end up in my spam folder but doesn’t. Once in a great while one of those emails contains a curiosity that leaves me wanting more. Case in point, I got an email about artist Donald Judd’s Standing writing desk. I think, but I’m not sure, there is a distributor in Germany that is now offering this iconic piece of furniture.

Schellmann Furniture has the desk listed. It’s filed under the category “Artist Furniture”, which makes me wonder if it is Donald Judd’s desk? At the same time at the bottom of the web page it says “Produced by Judd Furniture”. If you go to the Judd Foundation site, they offer two standing desks, but not this one. It is a mystery that involves some further digging.

If you are unfamiliar with the piece, the standing writing desk designed by Judd in 1984, was a groundbreaking work of furniture design, that featured clean minimalist design with plenty of storage, a large work surface. When you look at the images of it, you can see why it is such a special piece of work from Judd. It has such harmony and balance. Below are a few images and the listing from Schellmann.

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By Donald Judd, New York and Marfa (1928–1994), we show a standing desk from 1984 as a quotation from his body of furniture. Like many of his other pieces of furniture, its simple formal language had a considerable impact on present-day artists and designers.

Douglas fir; also available in Finland color
or clear birch plywood, mahogany, plywood,
hardwood or pine.
Dimensions:
150 cm wide x 120 cm deep x 90 cm high
Produced by Judd Furniture

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So You Want to Stop People From Texting and Driving.

iphone4-1This morning while I was drinking my coffee and watching the news, there was a story on Good Morning America about New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo cracking down on texting and driving. I say you go governor. The thing is, I think there is a much easier and cheaper solution to the problem. One that doesn’t involve law enforcement, and can be easily implemented by hand set manufacturers, and software developers.

Smartphones are rapidly becoming the standard in the United States. Every smartphone on the market has one universal feature. They know where they are and how fast they are moving thanks to motion detection, GPS, and any number of other hardware and software specific features of the handset. So, why don’t we simply require smartphone manufacturers to disable texting if the phone is traveling in any direction faster than 10 miles per hour? Now before you can say what about when I’m riding on a plane, or high-speed train? If the phone is traveling faster than, lets say 120 miles per hour, texting services work.

I think this is a fairly straightforward, easy to implement solution. It could be achieved with a simple software update to iOS, Android, and Windows mobile operating system, and it could be adjusted with updates in the future. It wouldn’t get every phone in use, but it would probably get about 80 percent or more.

So I’m thinking it could work like this:

  • If my phone is moving faster than 10 miles per hour in any direction I can’t text
  • When I get to a stop light texting remains inactive for 30 seconds (the typical length of a stoplight)
  • If I travel faster than X mph my phone lets me text again.

It might piss people off at first, but so did seat belts and other devices that have made driving a hell of a lot safer in the last 100 years.