Back for it’s 5th year, Pick Me Up 2014 kicks off today at Somerset House in London hosting the graphic art in all its forms. Taking place across Somerset House’s cacophony of rooms, spaces and caves each containing curated artists, collectives and talks it’s set to be bigger and better than before with more late nights and disciplines represented over the 10 day festival.
KK Outlet, are hosting an exhibition of new work by one of our favourite artists Von. Elsewhere, is a collection of delicately beautiful drawings based on photographs shot by British filmmaker Dan Sully.
“Elsewhere is a reaction to an increasingly busy, saturated and invasive world where technology creeps further into our daily routine where we are actively encouraged to “share” day to day events no matter how minor or major, “Selfies” are recognised by Oxford English Dictionary and reaching for your phone when you have a spare minute to kill has become an automatic reaction. All these things make witnessing the moments where people have completely slipped into their own thoughts all the more rare, fragile and beautiful.”
Four different exhibition posters were designed for the show by Hort, David Pearson, Non-Format and Darren Firth (pictured). Prints and originals will be available to buy throughout the exhibition.
Launch Party: Thursday 1 May Exhibition Runs: 2-31 May
The magazine this year will be taken on a personal level, a piece that the Poool Team hope to offer to people as something that they want to keep forever. Packed with interviews with Casey Neistat, Patrick Clair and Oliver Jeffers and features by Studio Blup, Bartholot, Conrad Roset and many more. The magazine’s cover will be designed exclusively by Si Scott and will come with a poster designed by Noelia Lozano.
The mag will be exclusively available to all attendees of the OFFF Barcelona on May 15th – 17th.
Oh no? Oh Yes! On the 9th May Out The Box goes into its 7th round. This time Edelstall have teamed up with the Kestnergesellschaft in Hanover to bring the event to a larger audience. To warm up the new venue we’re bringing Bauhaus-University young-guns Yoshiko Jentczak, Viola Kristin Steinberg und Julia Wagner, collectively known as »Oh No Oh Yes« to talk about things.
For those of you who have never heard of Out The Box, it’s a talk format where we ask talented speakers to come and chat about objects we place in a box in front of them. The speaker doesn’t have a clue as to what will be in the box, providing the audience with a completely unpredictable, unscripted and unrehearsed impression of the speaker.
So far we’ve had the likes of Eike König, Deutsche & Japaner, Mario Lombardo, Andreas Uebele and Willem Stratmann visit us in Hannover.
Tickets and more Informationen: www.outtheboxevent.de/next-event
Last week saw BCNMCR (sponsored by Shillington College and organised by designer Dave Sedgwick) take place across Manchester, including a day of talks from Barcelona studios SOLO, TOORMIX, LAURA MESEGUER, ATIPUS, CLASE BCN, and TWO POINTS. A total of eleven studios (including FFF favourites Alex Trochut and Brosmind) are involved in this years free exhibition at Northern Quarter venue Twenty Twenty Two (formerly 2022NQ), which opened on March 27 and runs until April 23rd, with most designing exclusive new work especially for the show. A few of us from FFF descended upon the city to see what we could learn from our European friends in the beautiful setting of the Halle.
Needless to say, the talks were brilliant – full of humour, insight and passion.
The Book of Everyone looks like an interesting idea. The site let’s you create a design-led, fact filled, curiosity inducing, personalised books about – everyone and anyone! If you are looking for a unique gift, then give it a shot. It’s free to try and easy to use!
KK Outlet are hosting a little get together to celebrate the launch of The Book of Everyone with a exclusively commissioned exhibition including Damien Poulain, Ian Stevenson, Jean Julien, Kyle Platts, Malika Favre, MVM, Nous Vous, Patrick Kyle, Sac Magique, Supermundane, Tom Edwards.
Come along to the launch of The Book of Everyone at KK Outlet on Thursday 30th January between 7-9pm to find out.
‘The Modern Magazine’ is the name of both the recent book by magCulture’s Jeremy Leslie, and the one-day conference that took place at Central Saint Martin’s Platform Theatre, London. There’s a great comprehensive overview of the event here on the magCulture blog. I had the pleasure of attending, and found it absolutely lived up to its aspirations to be “a celebration of the best of current editorial creativity”.
As Leslie puts it: “The magazine industry has continually been written off in recent years, yet magazines continue to be published and read. Despite fewer big launches and smaller budgets, magazine makers have risen to the challenging times and we are witnessing one of the most exciting creative eras in editorial thinking and innovation. A golden age of creativity.”
The line up of contemporary magazine makers was indeed impressive, such as Bloomberg Businessweek’s Richard Turley and Monocle’s Tyler Brule, who are redefining magazines for our age (not to mention; Omar Sosa, (Apartamento), Rosa Park, (Cereal), Simon Esterson, (Eye), Justine Picardie, (Harper’s Bazaar), Liz Ann Bennett (Oh Comely), Debbi Evans (Libertine), Penny Martin (The Gentlewoman), Davey Spens, (Boat), Patrick Waterhouse, (Colors), Cathy Olmedillas, (Anorak), Paul Barnes, (Commercial Type), David Jacobs, (29th Street), Scott King, (Sink Vogue). There was also a series of panel discussions, one about independent publishing and one about ‘women’s magazines’. The indie-publishing panel was chaired by all round good-guy Steve Watson from the brilliant STACK, his comprehensive write-up of the day can be found here.
The book is also a huge success. It carries a byline ‘Visual Journalism in the Digital Era’ and across its 240 pages it presents an overview of current editorial design trends, drawing on publications from the past ten years (since the first MagCulture book was released) to show how printed magazines have responded to the new digital channels.
Leslie explains the structure of the book: The book works on three levels. First, it’s a visual record of the graphic trends and visual quirks that have marked the past ten years. Most of its 750 images were photographed as real objects and have been carefully juxtaposed to provide a page-by-page guide to design trends and themes (handwritten text, illustration, lists, infographics etc). A four-chapter structure sits over this, each opening with an essay (Rethinking the Magazine, Reinventing Genres, Design x Content and Print x Digital). And each of these chapters have case studies based on interviews with key creative figures chosen to emphasise the need for a shared vision between content and design in contemporary magazines.
With enthusiastic folk like Jeremy championing the medium of magazines, communities and events springing up (not to mention other great online resources such as Magpile) it does indeed feel like we’re experiencing a new golden age of magazines. A great addition to the conference-calendar, let’s hope it becomes an annual event…
Treat yourself to a copy for the discounted price of £25. 750 illustrations | 240 pages | 280 x 216 mm
For those of you who missed it. Semi-Permanent came to Melbourne last week bringing with them a plethora of interesting and awesome speakers including:
Jessica Hishce, Nicholas Felton, Seb Lester, Julian Frost, Moffitt&Moffitt, Studio Hunt&Co, Ant Keogh, Glendyn Ivyn, Lilli Waters Nicole Reed, Magdalena Wosinska, Ben Briand, and Miso – Stanislava Pinchuk
The conference took place over two days at Melbourne Conference and Exhibition Centre, a good venue to facilitate a big audience but unfortunately located in one of the least inspiring areas of the Melbourne CBD. With a set of 7 speakers per day presenting for 45 minutes each the schedule was quite tight and unfortunately left little to no time of Q&A’s at the end of each talk. The speakers came from a range of backgrounds from designers, art directors, illustrators to film makers and photographers. As there was no particular theme set for the conference, the talks were focused on giving deeper insight into the speakers work, methods and journeys.
Here are some of our highlights from the two daysMoffitt&Moffitt
Kicking off day one was creative twins Andrew&Mark from Moffitt&Moffitt (Sydney) who are also responsible for the rebrand of Semi-Permanent. Starting off with photos of the brothers as kids in their Mickey Mouse outfits, they took us on a journey through the ups and downs of their life and work together. The twins captivated the audience with cocky silliness and insights into their highly polished work, which ranged from photographing 6 metre flames in someones questionable garage for an album cover to pushing the boundaries of briefs with clients such as global company GE (see project here). The part that most resonated with us was their “Success of Failure” story. It started out as a story about a fashion magazine with the generic name Girls&Boys targeted at “trendsetters” using big 3D letters “because it was cool” until they realised how, as they put it, “self indulgent and shit” it was. They threw the giant 3D letters off their balcony the same night and started from scratch. Their solution became highly acclaimed music magazine Demo which grew from the idea of capturing a a video clip on paper covering emerging Australian artists. The key thing they took away from this experience was that the best type of self promotion is to promote someone else, and to always start with the question: how can we help?Julian Frost
Definitely the highlight of day one (if not the whole conference) was Julian Frost: animator, illustrator and director behind the hugely successful Dumb Ways To Die animation for Metro Trains Melbourne. Julian enjoys drawing silly characters and if his illustrations result in a chuckle he is very happy. His black humour and wit comes through in his work, as well as in his presentation, giving the audience a giggle more than a few times throughout his speech. He gave us a crash course in how to make an animation funny and how he uses Tom Hanks’ ”what’s fun about that?” line from the film Big to test this. He also took us through the process of creating the Dumb Ways to Die animation from sketching characters through to creating the smartphone game. Frost gives credit to the client for taking “a giant leap of faith” and almost completely staying out of the project for most of the time – their only feedback in the end was to make the deaths of the characters hit by trains more violent.
He also told us that when Dumb Ways to Die took off on YouTube his brain overloaded and he promptly got a cold. Dumb Ways to Die picked up more awards than anyone ever at Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity this year and has, according to Frost, been viewed for over 273 years on YouTube (I’m sure you’ve seen it by now but here’s the link anyway). Some examples of Frost’s other work are below.Nicholas Felton
San Franciscan Nicholas Felton (one of the lead designers of the Facebook timeline and creator of Daytum.com) wrapped up day one telling us about the process of creating his hugely popular personal Annual Reports. The man is a genius, and the amount of effort and detail he goes into to create these explicit infographics of his life is mind boggling – almost too much to take in on a Friday afternoon. Felton describes the Annual Reports as stories expressed in numbers, and he says that numbers play a big role in how we communicate today, and should be considered as tool to use along side typography and imagery.Hunt&Co
Thomas Williams from Hunt&Co (Melbourne) kicks off day two of the conference. Thomas is the man behind internationally loved publication Process Journal and Made. He told us about growing up on a vineyard and failing art class. He revealed some of his early work as a designer and how back then he thought he was pretty awesome… but later realised he wasn’t. As he was challenged with working within the boundaries of normal office hours he eventually decided to start his own studio. The very humble beginnings of Hunt&Co seemed to have been a mixture of playing XBox in his underpants and working really fucking hard as he puts it. Engaging throughout his presentation, Williams was well considered and well structured, and probably involved the most amount of swear words – something he told us he almost regretted having included since another acclaimed speaker had said the night prior that this was un professional. We thought it was absolutely appropriate. He also gave us some well written and spoken words to take with us and share including “Leonardo DiCaprio does not make bad movies. Ever” and “Don’t do a lot and achieve nothing” and eventually parting with the words…Jessica Hische
Who better to wrap up a conference the Jessica Hische? Seriously. She was everything we thought she would be… and more. Master of improvisation and a seasoned speaker she engaged us with little anecdotes and even cross referenced the presentations of the previous speakers as she went. Amongst other things she spoke about her wedding invite and website and how it had been bagged out on a news site as the most hipster invite anyone’s ever made. She didn’t deny it wasn’t (we think it’s stunning, check it out here.) She also gave insight to the process and research that went into designing the Penguin book series. By the end of her presentation she had won everyone over with her charm and probably made sure everyone was coming to the after party. As a finishing touch to the talk she surprised everyone by showing a polished version of photographer Magdalena Wosinska’s logotype (who spoke previous day) that she had whipped up overnight! This was in no way meant as a slight, she was only offering her professional help and I think Magdalena and Jessica will for sure become great ladybro’s as a result. For anyone who is interested in lettering she also an excellent class up on skillshare!
On the 18th October we’ll be asking our speaker to improvise his talk based upon unknown items he takes out of a large box. In the past Eike König, Deutsche & Japaner, Mario Lombardo, Andreas Uebele und Peter Zizka have braved the unpredictable format and hope to invite international speakers to come to Germany soon.
Tickets 15 Euro / Early Birds 10 Euro 18th October 2013 – 7.00 pm Edelstall in Hanover, Germany
For those of you who have never heard of Out The Box, it’s a talk format where we ask talented speakers to come and chat about objects we place in a box infront of them. The speaker doesn’t have a clue as to what will be in the box providing the audience with a completely unpredictable, unscripted and unrehearsed impression of the speaker.
Details Friday 26th July 2013 @ 7pm Edelstall, Hannover, Germany 15 Euros / Early bird ticket 10 Euros Tickets: outtheboxzizka.eventbrite.com
At the beginning of May we attended London’s latest design conference POINT. Boasting some big names from the design world including, Erik Spiekermann, Morag Myerscough, Jonathan Barnbrook and video interviews from Alan Fletcher and Milton Glaser the bar was already being set pretty high. POINT took place over two days at Royal Institute of British Architects in London’s west end, the choice of venue (with it’s wooden panelled theatre walls, grand entrance stair cases and architectural-orientated bookshops) and list of speakers set an intellectual and academic tone to the conference.
With just one theatre for all the speakers there was a lot of speakers to get through in both days. For the most part this meant short 30 minute talks in order to stick to a tight formal schedule which kept talks concise and focused. Unfortunately this didn’t leave much time for questions both from the live audience or via Twitter. As both days progressed speakers towards the end of the day were given hour long slots which, for the like of Morag Myerscough and Matt Webb gave the audience a much deeper insight into their work.
For anyone who’s in Tokyo before 2nd June we recommend checking out 21_21 Design’s audio-visual exhibition Design Ah!. Run by the same people behind NHK’s educational program of the same name, Design Ah! is curated by the super-talented Taku Satoh, Yugo Nakamura and Keigo ‘Cornelius’ Oyamada.
The exhibition aims to encourage us all to think about design in our everyday life and to foster young design minds that can make sense of the data overload around us. Visitors can experience design through all sorts of cool audio-visual exhibits.
One of our favourites “Ah! in motion” by tha ltd gets you to dance around and watch how the ‘ah’ phonetic symbol that’s projected on to the wall in front of you changes shape to follow your movement.
It’s a fun exhibition put together with lots of creativity.
Last week FFFavourite Malika Favre treated us to an exclusive teaser of her latest saucy project Kama Sutra and today the website went live revealing the full scale of the project.
The Kama Sutra website will act as an archive for the project but also as a shop where you are able to purchase the whole alphabet as individual screenprints. Each Letter is a very limited edition of 25 high end screenprints in 4 colours, all printed with love by George Hurst.
You better be quick though if you want to grab a print as there will only be a limited amount of 10 prints of each letter online as the rest will be on show at Pick Me Up London from thursday 18th until the 28th of April.
We also had the chance to ask Malika a couple of questions about the project…
Hi Malika, can you tell us a little more about the new site for the Kama Sutra project?
What started with the Pick Me Up exhibition in mind soon became much more as I started thinking about how to archive the project online and possibly have the letters available to people outside the UK who couldn’t make it down to the exhibition.
My ex-Airside buddy [and FFF contributor], Guy Moorhouse of Futurefabric and the very talented guys from Present Perfect were up for the challenge so we decided to all collaborate in order to bring the project to life.
We hopped over to Dublin last weekend for Offset 2013; three days of talks and debates from a line-up of inspiring creatives. Even at first glance Offset feels a bit different from other design festivals. Its bold identity smacks you in the face challenging you to get stuck in, enthusiastically flouting the usually restrained style used for design events.
Based on this design aesthetic one could be forgiven for expecting a slightly chaotic event, but Offset is one of the best-organised events of its kind we’ve been to. On top of the seamless organisation and euphoric lack of queuing, it was fun, laid back and friendly. But above all, it felt tangibly creative. It’s easy to indulge in a bit of middle class navel gazing at these events, but this one didn’t allow any of that. It had a young, interesting buzz. It felt exciting. And the venue of the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, sitting on the Grand Canal Dock, is an architectural feast that looks different from every angle. Gorgeous inside and out, the venue itself added to the inspirational atmosphere.
There were two things about Offset that really stood out for me and enhanced my enjoyment of the overall event. The first was that the second room — rather than being used for the less well known speakers, was a discussion room. This created a great breathing space from the main stage, and added pace to the day.
The second thing was the variety of styles, disciplines and personalities of the speakers butting up against each other, creating great juxtapositions. As the content and style of each presentation was quite different, it brought fresh perspectives on familiar themes.
There weren’t as many big names on the bill as in previous years, but there were some serious heavyweights, including Bob Gill, Ben Boss, Vaughan Oliver, Oliviero Toscani and Louise Fili. Our highlights from this year are as follows:
Ireland’s Laureate for children’s literature Niamh Sharkey talked passionately about the fight to get to a place worth going, gave fascinating insight into character development from a simple hand drawn line through to a 3D TV character and inspired the importance of respecting, and working for, your audience. Read more