Classic, and iconic, graphic design from the last six hundred years

Thursday, 23 March, 2017

Graphic: 500 Designs that Matter

Graphic: 500 Designs that Matter, published by Phaidon Press, is a collection of iconic and classic graphic design from the last six hundred years.

It looks, to me, like it would be a great source of inspiration.

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Litbaits, a clickbait like ploy to encourage people to read more books

Monday, 20 March, 2017

With online publishers playing a part in the demise of printed books, and bookshops, The Wild Detectives, an indie bookstore located in Dallas, Texas, is finding a way to fight back, by playing online publishers at their own game.

Enter Litbaits, a campaign designed to encourage people to read books, by enticing them with clickbait style copy. For instance, the title “Teenage girl tricked boyfriend into killing himself”, takes anyone clicking the link, to a webpage containing the full version of Romeo and Juliet.

So far only classic, out of copyright, books can be accessed, but it will be interesting to see how Litbaits plays out.

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Ralph Steadman illustrates Ray Bradbury’s novel Fahrenheit 451

Thursday, 9 March, 2017

Artwork by Ralph Steadman

I was about eleven when I first saw Francois Truffaut’s film adaptation of Ray Bradbury’s dystopian novel about a futuristic book burning society, Fahrenheit 451.

It left me feeling despondent for days.

In a sense so to do a series of illustrations by British artist Ralph Steadman, that he produced in 2003, for a fiftieth anniversary edition of Bradbury’s book, as beautiful as they are to look at.

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On writing with style, some advice from Kurt Vonnegut

Tuesday, 14 February, 2017

An article penned by late US author Kurt Vonnegut, in 1999, offering his tips to writers. A must read, but here are the main points:

  • Find a subject you care about
  • Do not ramble, though
  • Keep it simple
  • Have guts to cut
  • Sound like yourself
  • Say what you mean
  • Pity the readers

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2001: A Space Odyssey, an illustrated children’s book

Monday, 16 January, 2017

Illustration by Sergiy Maidukov

A series of drawings by Ukrainian illustrator Sergiy Maidukov, for a children’s book based on the Stanley Kubrick film, and Arthur C. Clarke novel, 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Via 2001Italia.

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Abridged classics, uh-oh, spoilers ahead

Friday, 9 September, 2016

Illustration by John Atkinson

Ottawa based cartoonist John Atkinson’s illustration series succinctly breaks down the plots of classic novels, into a short sentence. How handy.

How about Mansfield Park, by Jane Austen? I’ve had difficulty picking it up again since Sir Thomas returned from Antigua, and spoiled everyone’s fun.

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A world dominated by books, illustrations by Jungho Lee

Thursday, 25 August, 2016

Illustration by Jungho Lee

Don’t write off books yet. The paper ones, that is. In the world of Jungho Lee, a Seoul based artist and illustrator, they are omnipresent. The books here have re-purposed themselves, and it will be a long time before they become obsolete…

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The cook, the writer, and the food photographer, Flora Shedden

Monday, 22 August, 2016

Photo by Flora Shedden

Nineteen year old Scottish art history student Flora Shedden has led an eventful life. According to the about page on her website, she has already worked as a gallery assistant, a researcher, a photographer, a costume seamstress, and also a waitress. Though not all at the same time. Presumably. Unless this was an instance of extreme slash careerism.

Photo by Flora Shedden

Now writing can be added to that list, even though Sheddon’s not entirely on unfamiliar ground here, she was once the editor of her primary school’s newspaper. As if that’s not enough, it’s also obvious she is a dab hand at photography as well. Something that becomes apparent after looking through her website and Instagram page.

Photo by Flora Shedden

It was the food photography that caught my eye though. Here her work varies a little from others in the same field, in that she often prepares the food in question herself. I only say that, because in the course of writing this post, I discovered she is also writing a cookbook. Taking photos as she goes. It won’t be long then, until she can add author to that list of occupations.

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And now for some recent book cover designs

Friday, 19 August, 2016

I don’t read books, I only look at the design of their covers. That’s not quite correct, but sometimes it can be hard to go passed a good book cover. Anyway, here’s a selection of book covers from titles that have been published in the last month or so.

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For all the written works in the world there are two types of writers

Thursday, 7 July, 2016

There are two types of writers, bashers and swoopers, says Ollie Campbell.

Bashers write one sentence at a time, and do not move onto the next one until they are finished. After that they never come back to it. As far as they’re concerned, it is ready to go.

Swoopers, on the other hand, might write different parts of the story during a single sitting. They might start by working on an idea in the middle, then go to something near the beginning, then jump to another towards the end of the story. That sounds familiar.

For Swoopers, writing is about gradually getting a jumble of ideas into shape. And these kinds of writers are used to working around the limitations of their tools. A writer I spoke to recently said “I normally have six different Word documents open at once with different parts of what I’m writing. Then it’s just condense, condense, condense.”

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