Thursday, September 30, 2010

$28 million Copy Edit

So interesting...

New York Street Signs to Receive a $28 M. Copy Edit

By Dan Duray

September 30, 2010 | 2:17 p.m
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New York City has begun a federally mandated project that will replace the all-capital lettering on the city's street signs with a correctly lowercase version in a new font, the Post reports. The effort began earlier this year, and should cost $27.6 million by the time it's completed in 2018.

The new font is called Clearview, and was designed for this purpose. The changed signs should be easier to read, according to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and City Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, who also pointed out that "on the Internet, writing in all caps means you are shouting."

Read the rest...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

What is it called?

Does anyone remember what it's called when you use a lot of one element, put together, to make another? I think it's called ambiguity- but I remember that ambiguity was a lot like something else, and I might be thinking of that something else. For example, the Prius commercials, where the car is driving along scenery that is composed on a million little people? (See left. I think ambiguity is more like the photo to the right.)


Anyway, I LOVE this element.- The one to the left, I mean. I am so intrigued when I see things like that, it's so nerdy, and I can't explain it. Incidentally I got really excited this week when I was a recipient of an email forward that is closely related. The forward contained a parable, which I'll attach to the bottom of this post, but it's the pencil projects that I think are really neat.
The projects themselves are pretty cool- some more abstract than others, but the fact that they are exclusively out of pencils is really creative.














I saw something similar to this a while ago- I can't remember if it was in class or online, but it was a series of projects done for a marketing company, for which the artist took those paint sample strips you can get at Home Depot, and such, and made really interesting designs. (I'll try to find photos of them for another post one day.)

















This is the parable that came with the photos:


A PENCIL MAKER TOLD THE PENCIL 5 IMPORTANT LESSONS JUST BEFORE PUTTING IT IN THE BOX :


1.) EVERYTHING YOU DO WILL ALWAYS LEAVE A MARK.

2.) YOU CAN ALWAYS CORRECT THE MISTAKES YOU MAKE.

3.) WHAT IS IMPORTANT IS WHAT IS INSIDE OF YOU.

4.) IN LIFE, YOU WILL UNDERGO PAINFUL SHARPENINGS, WHICH WILL ONLY MAKE YOU BETTER.

5.) TO BE THE BEST PENCIL, YOU MUST ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE HELD AND GUIDED BY THE HAND THAT HOLDS YOU.

Good Food Writing

For our show and tell this week, we had to find an example of good food writing. The piece I found- an article on fried green tomatoes in Garden & Gun magazine- quickly caught my attention. The article, called Slice of Heaven, described the food, how they were once made, how they are now, why we love them, etc. The section also included a recipe for fried green tomatoes, and an into to a chef who is apparently famous for them in North Carolina. I thought the photos were excellent as well. In a health or "Cooking Light" kind of magazine, they'd be terrible- but to go along with the article, which raved about pork fat being an essential frying ingredient and targeted the southern population, they were perfect.
And more on the topic of Garden & Gun magazine, last week in class I mentioned that I didn't know exactly who the target audience is for the publication, so I did some research this week. The median age of readers is about 45 years old- and the median income well into six figures- I think just shy of $200,000/year. 33% of readers own more than one home. So I'm thinking that I probably couldn't pinpoint it earlier, because I'm not in it, ha. Still, I do love the magazine. I love the layout and the photography, and I do love to read it. The slogan says the magazine represents the "Soul of the New South," and the human interest stories are always interesting. I'm not as big a fan of the fashion section, but I also usually love to thumb through the travel guides and restaurant reviews. The recipes though, are always the best part.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Business Cards

Since starting this program in Fall of 2009, I've developed a crazy interest in business cards. The more I can get my hands on, the better- something which, as it turns out, makes me a great network-er. (Ha ha). My background is almost explicitly in writing- my only design experience in newspaper layout, so most of the design concepts are new to me. I've always been a fan/critic of advertising- commercials, billboards, etc, which is what probably initially led me to this program, but since I've started to learn more about actual design, I'm enthralled with business cards. Mine- work issued- are pretty plain, but neat. I think then, I live vicariously through other people's business card choices, and get super excited when I see some I like. I keep them around for inspiration, and stand by the claim that you can tell alot about a person by looking at their business card- despite the fact that most people use design templates they find on mass printing sites. They still had to make choices, creating a card to reflect themselves. If they hired someone else to make the choices- even strangers at the store- the card layout and design was choosen based on impressions, sometimes even first impressions- so then at the very least the business cards represent what others think of the business card holder.
This business card is one I collected recently from a photographer at one of the football games I went to. She was sweet, young- probably in her 20's and very spunky- blonde hair with bright pink streaks. Lo and behold, her business cards- which she'd let the person on staff where she bought the cards design- are black on both the front and back, with pink text/designs and irredecent (not sure if you can see that on the photo) accents. Voila! I imagine the designer didn't have a tough time trying to figure out a color scheme. The card is very cute, with definite spunk. Not something I'd choose for myself but based on my own first impression, very fitting for the photographer.