I first became aware of Helvetica when I was visiting New York during the Spring of 2002. I knew nothing about the fundamentals of typography back then (graphic design classes were four years off), but when I strolled into the F.I.T. bookstore and spotted a small red book emblazoned with a large H, my whole world changed. The book was Helvetica: Homage To A Typeface by Lars Müller. As I flipped through the pages of Helvetica-covered images, I made the connection that the typeface was all around me (including the subway I used to get back downtown). I’ve since looked at the book so many times that the spine has cracked!
Most people seeme to have a love or hate relationship with Helvetica, as I discovered with my recent purchase of the Helvetica notebook. The “lines” on the pages are really quotes about Helvetica in 3 point type….
One of the quotes on the Love side reads:
“I always really enjoy using Helvetica because you know, some people say they use a different typeface because it gives a different feeling. I really enjoy making Helvetica speak in different ways. It’s been around for fifty years, coming up, and it’s just as fresh as it was. Obviously, it wasn’t intended to be this cool thing, but it’s just a beautiful font.” -Michael C. Place
And, on the Hate side, here’s a sample:
“Most people who use Helvetica use it because it’s umbiquitous. It’s like going to McDonald’s instead of thinking about food. Because it’s there. It’s on every street corner. So let’s eat crap because it’s on the corner. ” -Ed Spiekermann
Personally, I think Helvetica has its time and place and shouldn’t be slapped on everything just because it’s simple and easy (though I’m guilty of using way too much Hevetica Neue Ultra Light).
What’s your opinion on Helvetica?
Love it? Hate it?
We celebrated Halloween early this year at Nemo Design on Saturday. Lee drove my car to the party and I bet it’s the first time Jesus has driven a Jetta! He did a mighty fine job, considering that he had stigmatas on his hands and was wearing flip-flops.
Steve Perry and a boyscout pal make small talk. Smokey kept telling me how ugly I was…which was quite ironic, coming from a face like that! I couldn’t drink anything all night; my nose was too long.
He was wearing bear claw slippers and people had spilled alcohol everywhere. I was cringing as he shuffled through huge puddles. Hopefully the bear claws got a good spin through the wash machine after the party.
Jesus put the fear of God into little Smokey (trust me, he needs it). Look at that face! I can’t believe my Mom spent so much money to get his teef fixed.
There was a massive dance party with deejays in the photo studio. Totally awesome!
Dave Allen was Fidel Castro, which was pretty convincing until he talked. Fidel doesn’t have a British accent, does he?!!
On the way back to the car, Jesus turned the corner on 20th and Belmont and there was a message on the side of an electrical box: “NOW IS ALL YOU HAVE.” Well said.
Some of the photos from my NY shoot are beginning to roll in. Bianca
took a few hundred photos over a two day period in September. The bottle was a happy accident; I just happened to be walking through Saks when a suited man offered up Coke in vintage-y glass bottles and mini red velvet cupcakes! NY still has that magical spark when you least expect it.
The Nemo Design Halloween party was Saturday night; it was by far the best I’ve ever been to. Barely anyone recognized me! I’ve never dressed as a man before, but this year I decided that I was going to be 100% Steve Perry— no wimping out this time! If you’re wondering who Steve is, he was the lead singer of Journey and his trademark outfit was a tailcoat, Levi’s, feathered hair, and white Nikes.
What’s the deal with my admitted Journey obession?! The backstory is this: starting when I was a baby nubs in the early 80s, the only thing my parents seemed to play on their stereo was all Journey all the time. Pretty much every song they’d ever released was repeatedly pounded into my skull. I have no idea why they were so obsessed, but it was something I couldn’t escape. My Mom still digs Steve and this year, I wanted to make her proud. Now, Steve has a very prominent profile and…I have a squishy nose without much structure. Wearing a fake nose was no easy task! Lee (who was dressed as Jesus!) helped me attach it and even mixed acrylic paint to match it to my skintone. I didn’t want to cut some 80s bangs, but I still was able to work some slight featherin’ in. It was a strange experience not carrying a purse and only having a tube of chapstick in my pocket. The bushy brows and five o’ clock shadow were also a bit hard to get used to!
I’ll go into the party details later, but for now I want to share the ‘photobooth’ pictures that were being shot all night by Nemo’s entrance:
My brother and I made my Mom proud (or worried)! He was dressed as an obese boy scout. The whole night, Smokey’s stomach was slipping and he was constantly having to hoist it up. That’s what you get when you stuff pillows down your thrifted fat pants! I owe Lee major props for screening me a custom Don’t Stop Believin’ shirt!
Behold Steve Perry, David Lee Roth, and my brother. This set of photos was totally out of control. By the third photo, Smokey let go of David Lee’s leg and I got hit in the nose, which totally cracked and came loose!
This is the master of all group shots! I don’t know who half of these people are, but at least we’re having fun! I have a ton of photos to share in the next few days…thanks to Nemo for putting on such an amazing party! I’m so thankful that my first internship experience has been so fulfilling + entertaining thus far.
♥ Think pink.
P.S. The Fashion Notebook set on Flickr.
1. sketch book, 2. JELLY FISH DANCE, 3. TOMOKO, 4. James, 5. Untitled, 6. WILMA WITH BRAIN, 7. WILMA MARTINEZ, 8. DOU_2006_glasses, 9. DOU_2007_glasses2, 10. your secret flesh., 11. Come over, 12. Amor y Amistad, 13. Labios 304, 14. 280029864_3e6fac75ea, 15. Trucs, 16. Untitled
♥ The Helvetica Notebook is two-sided so depending on your mood, you can either confess your undying love or hate.
♥ The truth is out! More and more luxury goods are being produced in China according to a new book, Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster by Dana Thomas. (link via bitsandbobbins).
♥ The beautiful interface and subtle layouts of online designer clothing retailer ZOE makes me swoon. They always go out of their way to show complete looks so you can get a better idea of how a piece works with an outfit.
♥ It’s well-known that design firms have some of the coolest digs. This Aint No Disco gives us a sneak peak inside their interiors around the world!
♥ Bon&Ging is carrying these striped socks by Hansel from Basel. I nearly bought these at Barney’s NY; still lusting after them!
♥ Freelance Switch asks: should freelancers use a contract? My answer is always a resounding yes!
♥ What Google can teach us about self-image over at LifeDev.