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News Articles

The latest creative industry news from various different publications and sources

10 Latest news articles

Designa: technical secrets of the visual arts

Source: Creative Review | Published: Thursday 23rd of October 2014 12:01:00 PM

A new sourcebook aims to reveal the secrets behind the many of the patterns and symbols that occur in the traditional visual arts. From Celtic and Islamic designs, to studies of curves, perspective, symmetry and the 'golden section', Designa is a real box of delights...

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Scott King art directs new UAL student magazine

Source: Creative Review | Published: Friday 24th of October 2014 02:17:00 PM

Cover image photography by Tyrone Lebon. Cover graphic: Mark James Works

The debut issue of Artefact, the new newspaper for the University of the Arts London, features well-honed student journalism, imagery by a range of established artists and photographers and an influential name in the art director's chair: Scott King. I talked to him and the London College of Communication's Simon Hinde about the launch of the new project...

With its debut issue out this month Artefact will replace UAL's current student paper, Arts London News. As LCC's journalism and publishing programme leader, Hinde felt that ALN didn't reflect the kind of exciting journalism that could come from a student-led publication.

Equally, the format seemed restrictive and old-fashioned ? the magazine was laid out according to templates, Hinde explains, with guidance from journalism staff with a background in newspaper layout. While the students saw the value in a publication being produced by the course, they were not particularly engaged.

Illustration by 123RF.com

"If you wander around Shoreditch and Soho you see a host of brilliant and exciting magazines produced by talented young people who are thinking differently about what journalism is and could be ? and it seemed to me that our students could do the same," Hinde says.

Enter King ? a recently appointed chair of visual communication at UAL ? who on meeting Hinde agreed to art direct the project (he is interviewed below). King now works primarily as an artist but has a well-earned reputation for his work on magazines in the 1990s and early 2000s, having been art director of i-D and creative director of Sleazenation. Since then he has also designed and art directed several books and self-published works.

"Fundamentally, I wanted the thing to be outward-looking," says Hinde, "to talk to its audience not as students at UAL but as young people living in London, with all the social, cultural, artistic and political interests that implies. The magazine comes out of LCC but it should be something that people from a much wider community that our university can engage with."

Photography by Casey Orr

The writing is certainly strong ? it's engaging and outward-looking, too ? but it's interesting to note that the visual side of the magazine, its design and imagery, has come from outside of the college's student body.

King worked on the magazine with designer Oswin Tickler, a UAL alumnus who works out of the studio Smallfury, but on Artefact's debut issue at least, the college's design students were only involved during the initial stages ? something Hinde is keen to develop further. As most of the work was carried out over the summer months, Hinde says, the students simply weren't around to contribute ? but King and Tickler's template for the magazine can now be taken on by the students.

"We're in the early stages of this project and I'm keen to use talent from around the college and university," Hinde adds. "In our next issue, and in future issues, illustration and photography students will be providing artwork to illustrate articles. My intention is to broaden and deepen relationships with other courses and I hope this will include graphic design students, too."

Hinde's ambitions for the publication are such that he says he would like to see the magazine in shops, bars and cafes all over the capital. "I also want [it] to be unambiguously professional in its outlook and ambition: not to be a compromised 'student magazine'," he says. "The main stipulation I had was that it should showcase student writing at different lengths and in different styles and I think [Scott's] done an incredible job of doing that."

Below, I talk to King about his return to magazines and his design direction for Artefact.

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Unquiet films: The Art of Satire

Source: Creative Review | Published: Wednesday 22nd of October 2014 12:34:00 PM

The latest instalment in The Times' Unquiet Films series offers a fascinating look at the work of political cartoonist Peter Brookes and the importance of visual satire.

A collaboration between News UK, ad agency Grey London and production company Betsy Works, Unquiet Films is a promotional series exploring "the cultural and historical impact of The Times and The Sunday Times" and the work of the newspapers' journalists, editors, photographers and contributors.

Previous films (which we wrote about here) include one on typeface Times New Roman, another on The Times' use of photojournalism and one on its history of investigative reporting.

The latest, The Art of Satire, was directed by Liz Unna and captures a day in the life of Peter Brookes, political cartoonist at The Times since 1992.

As well as a look at Brookes' working process and the pressures of creating a new cartoon each day, the film features some thought-provoking commentary from fellow Times cartoonist Morten Moreland, broadcaster Jon Snow, Guardian cartoonist Martin Rowson, art dealer Chris Beetle and political cartoon expert Tim Benson.

Beautifully illustrated and highly detailed, Brookes' cartoons are created using pencil, ink and watercolour, and works featured in the film range from witty plays on Cameron's Etonian roots and Ed Milliband's resemblance to Wallace & Gromit character Wallace:

To darker, scathing portrayals of Vladimir Putin and Silvio Berlusconi.

"He's a wonderful illustrator, who seems to be very good at caricature - capturing the essence of a politican," says Benson.

As Rowson points out, cartoonists are an important part of political dialogue in the UK, enjoying an extraordinary level of freedom compared to other countries. Brookes' cartoons - from light-hearted jokes to what Rowson describes as "character assassinations" - have a lasting effect on the public's impression of the politician featured, and are not just art, but a powerful form of visual journalism.

"Political cartoonists go to the absolute core of the truth," says Snow.  Read More»

New type

Source: Creative Review | Published: Friday 24th of October 2014 06:46:00 PM

This month?s pick of new type designs, projects and events includes new releases from foundries Klim and Blackletra, a lovely letterpress printed newspaper and an exhibition exploring type and manual printing methods from Fraser Muggeridge...

Spot Mono

First up, though, is Berlin type foundry and design studio Schick Toikka?s latest release, Spot Mono. Available in four weights with an extended icon set, its design is inspired by contemporary Japanese display typefaces and classic typewriter faces such as Courier.

Images via Schick Toikka

Shick Toikka has produced some great typefaces this year ? including a bespoke design for the Finnish Cultural Institute in New York ? and this is no exception. To promote its release, the studio has also produced a three-colour risograph printed specimen book (limited to 100 copies). Buy it at schick-toikka.com


Blackletra founder Daniel Sabino's last font release was the angular graphic script Haltrix - featured in Gareth Hague's article on type trends in our July issue (which you can read here). His latest type family, Gandur, is the result of an investigation into two ideas: "the intersection of geometry and calligraphy, and the morphological differences between Blackletter and Roman."

"The design began by adhering to a strict hexagonal grid but during its development, slowly moved from a purely geometric to a more pen-based design. This is especially true in the heaviest weights," explains Sabino.

For details, see blackletra.com

Domaine Sans

New Zealand type foundry Klim's latest release, Domaine Sans, is an elegant family of text and display typefaces. The design began with an exploration into sans serifs with contrast and follows the release of Domaine; a Latin serif based on a custom logotype which Klim founder Kris Sowersby designed for wine brand Hardys.

"Sans-serif typefaces with contrast are not very common these days," explains Sowersby on the Klim blog. "I suspect the spectre of Optima inhibits their use. I think Optima is a wonderful typeface?it?s the first cogent typeface with contrast, in my opinion?but anecdotal evidence suggests that amongst graphic designers it?s still quite divisive," he adds.

Domaine Sans Display was featured before its release in New York magazine's Spring Fashion 2014 issue, pictured below, which inspired Sowersby to work with Dave Foster on a Fine version with extra thin hairlines. It's a beautifully crafted design and you can read more about its development here, or buy it here.

Spread from the Spring Fashion issue of New York magazine, 2014. Image via klim.co.nz

Fraser Muggeridge - Mimeographica Alphabetica

Graphic designer Fraser Muggeridge's new exhibition at London's Whitechapel Gallery, open until 30 November, features a striking abstract alphabet display (below), created by overlaying and duplicating stencils. The show explores manual printing techniques and is part of a collaboration with secondary school students from Welling School in Kent. Also on display are two mimeograph printing machines, vintage stencil sets and manuals from Muggeridge's personal collection.

On October 30, Muggeridge is hosting a workshop at the exhibition, followed by a talk from designer Eric Kindel on the history of stencilled texts. For details or to book tickets, see whitechapelgallery.org

Extra Condensed

Extra Condensed is a beautifully produced letterpress newspaper from London printing studio Counter Press, described as an "occasional publication of work, musings and typographic meanderings."

The first issue is eight pages long and printed in black and flourescent orange in an edition of 150. Each page was designed, typeset and printed by hand using wood and metal type. Buy a copy from 27 October at thecounterpress.co.uk

Gratuitous Type - issue 4

The fourth issue of Elana Schlenker's Gratuitous Type - described as "a pamphlet of typographic smut" - features interviews with Claire Huss,  Read More»

Bagpuss, the marmalade cat

Source: Creative Review | Published: Friday 24th of October 2014 05:46:00 PM

Emily's cat Bagpuss; the most important, the most beautiful, the most magical saggy old cloth cat in the whole wide world. And as new book The Art of Smallfilms reveals ? originally, marmalade. So what happened to him?

The Art of Smallfilms, published by Four Corners Books (see our longer piece on the book here) charts the history of the Kentish studio set up by Oliver Postgate in 1959 and which went on to produce several classics of children's animation, from The Clangers and Bagpuss, to Ivor the Engine and Noggin the Nog.

Postgate's creative partner at Smallfilms was the illustrator Peter Firmin. He made the models, figures and sets for all of the above and drew many of the characters as sketches prior to modelling.

In the book's chapter on Bagpuss, one sketch in particular jumps out. It's clearly of our lethargic hero but he looks a little different: he's orange. The caption states that it's the "first colour idea" for the moggy.

According to the book, in 1973 Bagpuss was originally conceived as a marmalade cat, but when the material for his stripey coat was manufactured at Dunbar Fabrics in Folkestone ? they used pink by mistake. Which, of course, turned out to be just the right colour for Bagpuss and possibly one of the most magical, most beautiful, most serendipitous moments in Smallfilms's history.

Also of interest to Bagpuss fans will be the drawing reproduced in the book which reveals that Professor Yaffle started life as a 'Professor Bogwood', a human character that was deemed too gloomy and too out of place among the other characters. He was then reconfigured as the woodpecker bookend we all know and love (initially without the trademark specs).

The Art of Smallfilms ? The Work of Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin, edited by Jonny Trunk and Richard Embray, is published by Four Corners Books;   Read More»

The Art of Smallfilms

Source: Creative Review | Published: Wednesday 22nd of October 2014 01:43:00 PM

From the puppets created for Bagpuss and The Clangers, to the paper cut-outs that shaped the world of Noggin the Nog, the archive of Smallfilms has been meticulously detailed in a new publication from Four Corners Books. It's both a celebration of handmade creativity and a tribute to British eccentricity and imagination...

The book has been put together by Jonny Trunk who is, as comedian Stewart Lee suggests in his introduction, something of an archivist of British popular culture. Trunk's methods as a cultural excavator are, Lee says, a perfect fit for a visual history of one of the UK's most cherished creative companies.

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Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2014

Source: Creative Review | Published: Wednesday 22nd of October 2014 04:50:00 PM

From cosy geladas to luminous squid, here are some of our highlights from  Read More»

Ads of the Week

Source: Creative Review | Published: Friday 24th of October 2014 02:06:00 PM

Here's CR's pick of the best ads that we've seen these week: including work for Facebook, Virgin America, Lacoste, Full Circle, Google, and the UK's Coastguard service. First up though, a Halloween-inspired film for Ikea...

Created by BBH Asia Pacific (which was also behind the recent, brilliant Ikea 'bookbook' spot) for the Singapore market, the film sees Stanley Kubrick's classic horror The Shining reimagined in an Ikea store. Look out for key moments from the film referenced throughout. ECD: Scott McClelland; Creatives: Marcus Yuen, Angie Featherstone; Director: Jordan Quellman; Production company: Black Sheep Live.

Possibly in an attempt to counter the widely-published concerns about its Messenger app, Facebook has released this cute product demo which shows a couple acting out their romance using the service. Agency: Wieden + Kennedy; Creative directors: Stuart Harkness, Max Stinson; Design director: Guy Featherstone; Creatives: Matt Skibiak, David Povill, Zack Madrigal, Ollie Watson; Director: Aaron Duffy; Production company: 1st Avenue Machine.

Virgin America released this curious film online this week. Lasting almost six hours in length, it depicts a journey via Blah Airlines, a fictional budget flight carrier which offers a distinctly no frills experience ? the underlying message, of course, being that a flight with VA would be much more entertaining. No one is expecting you to watch the whole thing but I kind of admire the commitment of making a six-hour-long piece of tedium. It also comes with a fake website too, naturally. Agency: Eleven Inc; CCO: Mike McKay; Creative director: Bryan Houlette; Senior copywriter: Aryan Aminzadeh; Copywriters: Jon Korn, Kevin X Barth; Director: Shillick.

Lacoste has ventured onto Vine with a series of films made with Vine and Instagram star Zach King. The two films released so far (one shown above, the other can be viewed on Lacoste's Vine channel) reveal how Lacoste has co-opted King's 'magic' style into the films for the brand, which are charming to watch. Agency: BETC; Creative directors: Ivan Beczkowski, Annick Teboul; Creatives: Nicolas Casanova, Lorene Garric, Emmanuelle Labb  Read More»

Hear from six of the best from The Modern Magazine

Source: Creative Review | Published: Wednesday 22nd of October 2014 10:54:00 AM

Following on from its Modern Magazine conference last month, magCulture is releasing a video interview with one of six of the main speakers every Wednesday. The second film has just gone live and features Elana Schlenker, the designer behind the ?pamphlet of typographic smut' ? Gratuitous Type...

During September's conference magCulture filmed a series of interviews with six of event's speakers and is continuing to post the results over the next few weeks. Last week, Wired Italia's David Moretti discussed what went into launching the magazine ? you can see his film below.

Elana Schlenker is the Brooklyn-based graphic designer behind Gratuitous Type and she talks about the founding of the magazine and her plans for the next issue. Schlenker's exhibition, based on the recent fourth issue of Gratuitous Type, is on now at KK Outlet in London.

Over the next four Wednesdays, interviews with the following creative and editorial talent will appear on magCulture: Veronica Ditting, The Gentlewoman; Adam Moss, New York; Kai Brach, Offscreen; Jeremy Langmead, Christies.

Here's the first interview in the series, Wired Italia's creative director David Moretti, interviewed after speaking at the conference in London on 19 September.

The Modern Magazine conference is reviewed in the new issue of CR.

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