Monthly Archives: February 2008

Flickr Favorites Thursday #16

 

1. Cream / The Best Of Cream, 2. Bunny laughs, 3. Ananaust, 4. A Pelican Book – Self and Others, 5. purple, 6. Fashion | David Downton, 7. invasive species (detail), 8. Ice Cream Haus – Lake Tahoe, near Tahoma, 9. siff-tiptop, 10. Sinalco, 11. True blue~, 12. Modern Publicity 40 – 1970/71, 13. RedDeer, 14. 25+, 15. Tiny Meat Design, 16. Photo by Tony Notarberardino, 17. Photo by Alix Malka, 18. Outfit idea (4), 19. Slabbalphabet, 20. Untitled, 21. Heart-Shapes Pancakes, 22. black balloon 2, 23. Grafik Magazine Issue 150, 24. RIP VIP, 25. armoire amor

Link Love: 2.22.08

1. IKEA is giving us a sneak preview of their April offerings and there’s a definite modernized baroque feel to some of the pieces below. Exciting!

2. Lisa Bengtsson’s shoe-patterned wallpaper is best thing ever. Shoes in a poppy, graphic pattern on my walls would be a dream come true (via design sponge).

3. La Compagnie De Provence is a line of luxury soap and skincare from France and features some of the best packaging I’ve ever seen. Their lingerie wash, complete with bold blackletter text is especially striking.

4. If I could own a piece of art of my choice, it would be these by Martin & Muñoz, a duo of Pennsylvania based artists that have been working together since 1994 (via it’s nice that):

5. Gala Darling reviews the FAFI for M.A.C. cosmetics line! Head over to M.A.C. to stock up here!




Calendar Update

 

 Today I finally printed, trimmed, and placed my calendar in a CD case. It’s now happily sitting on my desk! A full preview of all the months and a March download will be available next week… 

 




Magnificent Magazine Covers

Magazine covers, especially those of the vintage variety are like mini canvases to me. They’re also tiny time capsules, capturing a particular moment in time. Fashion magazines have always been my addiction of choice. This became a bit of a joke when I started my graphic design degree and realized that while some of my peers were subscribing to design-appropriate titles, I managed to keep a minimum of six fashion subscriptions in constant rotation with nothing design related in sight!

Thanks to a post over at Sing Eclectic, I discovered the holy grail; a collection of vintage Vogue covers!

My favorites: 



  
Vogue issues #77, #57, #117, #112, #101 and #105.
 

Surfing Coverbrowser.com for more covers can be considered research, no?




The Symbolic Power of the Red Cross

 


Notebook where I keep red cross-related clippings.
     

The symbolism of the red cross is powerful and plays a prominent role in my art and overall aesthetics. The red cross is simple and perfectly symmetrical. To me, the red cross can be considered to have (at least) three varying meanings:

1. The Red Cross / Medical Imagery:
I’ve always been drawn to the American Red Cross and nurse uniforms. The Red Cross emblem was officially approved in Geneva in 1864, a year after the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was founded. The emblem, endorsed by the 16 signatories of the Geneva Conventions on international humanitarian law, is based on the Swiss flag with the colors reversed (Wikipedia).  


Mix-tape, circa 2000.
  

Years before I decided to become Nubby Twiglet, there was Nurse Twigenstein. It was a long and complicated name to remember for most people, but I had fun embracing the character! Starting in high school, I began wearing uniforms and red cross pins. I was drawn to the strong, stylistic imagery and the usage red and white color schemes. In 2003, Voltaire immortalized the character in his Chi-Chian series, when I became the assistant to a teddy bear named Dr. Yoshimoto. After the book was published, I took the picture to a seamstress who brought the uniform he drew to life and I wore it to various events (even a friend’s wedding!) for awhile after…  

  

2. The Swiss flag:
It is one of only two square flags in the world! The exact hue of red in the Swiss flag is not defined by law, and various authorities have used different colors over time. In 2007, the corporate design guide of the federal authorities designated Pantone’s PMS 485 as the shade of red to be used in print. So now you know!

The Swiss flag can have a sense of humor, too! In 2006, New York’s Swiss Institute commissioned Olaf Breuning to re-imagine the iconic symbol and you can’t help but smile, feeling like the Swiss flag is trying to give you a hug!  

  

Brands like Swatch often feature the Swiss flag on their watches (my all-time favorite being the Typically Square model) and advertisements. Here’s a page I saved out of one of their fanclub zines:  

  

3. Swiss graphic design:
As a graphic designer, I am highly influenced by the stylistic qualities often associated with classic Swiss poster design. Typically, the work of the Swiss features the following characteristics:

a. Images and text are often organized by geometrical grids. There’s an instantly recognizable orderly quality to Swiss design.

b. Sans serif typefaces such as Helvetica are often used (Switzerland is the birthplace of Helvetica).

During the 1920s and ’30s, skills traditionally associated with Swiss industry, particularly pharmaceuticals and mechanical engineering, were matched by those of the country’s graphic designers, who produced their advertising and technical literature. These pioneering graphic artists saw design as part of industrial production and searched for anonymous, objective visual communication. They chose photographic images rather than illustration, and typefaces that were industrial-looking rather than those designed for books.

- Richard Hollis  

  

Swiss posters of the 1950s and 1960s illustrate the “Swiss School” or the “Swiss Style,” relying heavily on composition, typography, and clear communication. This “style” had international influence, and the Swiss poster came to be regarded as a model in graphic design (Swiss Poster Collection at Carnegie Mellon University).

The Red Cross in Fashion:
The red cross has also made appearances in fashion. If you look closely, you’ll often recognize related cross imagery in the work of French designer Christian Lacroix. On the subject of the red cross, he says that ‘the cross is a dear symbol to me, one that I sometimes use as a signature instead of my name’…

On the topic of fashion and design, Moschino created one of the most memorable Swiss-inspired ad campaigns a few years back:  

  

Personal Art Influences:

More aesthetically challenging than a square canvas, the red cross is clean, concise, and timeless when used in art. I often assemble work on custom made ceramic and wood red crosses in homage:  

  

More red cross love:

1. Swiss Graphic Design History, a photo set on Flickr.

2. Swiss Legacy is an amazing blog dedicated to Swiss design and very image heavy with an emphasis on poster design and typography.

3. Vector Trash is my favorite living Swiss designer. Of course I am highly biased because he designed this portrait of me!

4. If you’re in NYC, stop by the Swiss Institute in Soho for viewings in the art gallery (and literature covered in Helvetica!)

5. Whose Red Cross to Bear? discusses the very fine line between red cross usage and copyright infringement.

The red cross to me is more than just a symbol. It’s a way of life, a reflection of good taste. It is modern, yet unchanging. Entrenched in a powerful past, it is sure to be continuously repurposed in the future.




New Pointy Black Boots

I could be considered a die-hard pointy boot fanatic. The exception would be my white boots, but otherwise everything I own resembles baby swordfish. So, imagine my dismay when I began searching for a basic pair of tall black boots with a minimal heel (no higher than you’d expect from a cowboy boot) and a very pointy toe. Everything I found seemed to be super equestrian (and unflatteringly flat) or it had an 80s snow boot-esque rounded off pointy toe

  

Finally, finally I found these sleek and simple slightly cowboy style boots by Destroy from Spain and it’s true love. Not only were they affordable (under $200.00), they’re fully lined in leather, have a wee little buckle along the back and are super comfortable.

 


What I Wore: 2.14.08

 

  

I thought of wearing hearts and tons of red on Valentine’s Day, but then I thought that would be too stereotypical (since I wear that stuff normally) and wore a vintage sweater instead. Thanks to Todd @ Nemo for taking the photo!

Sweater (T is for Twiglet!), Vintage
Suspender skirt, F21
Tights (hard to see but they have red polkadots), Nordstrom
Boots, Destroy
Watch, Target