Why is it that almost all foreign currency looks so much better than the American dollar? I’m not bashing the buck, but from a design perspective, to me foreign currency is simply more visually interesting than the American greenback. Case in point, the currency of the year awarded by The International Bank Note Society for the New Zealand for its $5 polymer note. The design features the face of New Zealand native mountain climber Sir Edmund Hillary, with a backdrop of Mount Cook and, a yellow-eyed penguin seemingly printed with what looks like metallic gold foil.
Now, with that said, I don’t think this is an award winning piece of design in the true sense. It is busy, and burdened with an abundance of imagery, and various patterns, but if you look at it in terms of a contemporary painting or print, it’s quite successful. I know that the reason for the patterns, color, overprints, and such are due to security issues and a need to foil counterfeiters, but this is something I might hang on a wall, and that is often the case for foreign currency with me. I’m not going to do that with American currency.
For more about the competition you can find it in this article at theguardian.com along with a video. And below are some additional curency examples.
This is what happens when you put a top notch designer and animator together. They create a visual feast for your eyes. The video below features the design work of Penny Dombroski, and the skilled animation of Tom McCarten. Through well timed animation cycles, clean simple graphics, and a well written script, the two of them manage to take what could be a fairly boring topic; (AIG Financial restructuring and sponsoring a rugby team), and make it into something you might actually want to watch to the very end. Really, really nice work.
If you have a 4K monitor, I suggest you watch the two videos below on it. If not at least watch them full screen on the highest definition monitor you have like your computer screen. Why because the detail, and color depth of these two time lapse films from Martin Heck | Timestorm Films will blow you away. Oh you might want to check your bank account for any extra cash, because after you watch these you are going to want to go to New Zealand. These are absolutely beautiful.
With Kansas City getting ready for its first major snowfall of the season, I thought I would do a little research on the advances made in sled technology. The last time I looked into sled tech was 3 years ago. Since then, some folks down in New Zealand have created a carbon fiber stealth sled; the Stealth X, by Snolo Sleds.
This high performance carbon fiber sled can hit speeds of up to 40 miles per hour, and can be maneuvered with precision under a variety of snowy and icy conditions. The carbon fiber construction is extremely light and strong. The design allows it to be carried like a backpack, which allows any back country explorer to have a little sledding fun on their deep country trek.
None of this sled tech comes cheap though. Stealth X will set you back $2500.00 plus shipping, so you better really be into sledding if you’re thinking about pulling the trigger on this one.