Wine labels

Ever buy a bottle of wine just because of the label? Of course you have. I do it all the time. I happen to especially like wine bottles because they are one of the last bastions of great classical design, in my opinion. They typically use “old style” typography, as compared to Tchischold’s New Typography, very elegant and classy typefaces, and sometimes very visually stunning artwork.

I’m actually considering purchasing either a t-shirt or a canvas print of the artwork on a bottle of 2005 Shiraz from Juno Wines. Their Cape Maidens wines are excellent, and all of the artwork is done in-house by Tertia du Toit. Beautiful!

Shiraz Wine Label

And I never would have bought it had I not loved the picture.

Is Not Magazine

The Underware website tipped me off on an amazing magazine called Is Not Magazine. The concept is awesome. The execution is awesome. The whole thing? Awesome.

It’s a magazine that’s part magazine, part poster and part interactive experience. A 1.5 meters by 2 meter poster magazine. That’s pretty darn big. And the design is completely cool and funky. I love it. I believe that I am unabashedly going to steal the entire concept and implement it here in Seattle. What a cool idea.

Is Not Magazine

I’ve been looking for that thing, the hook or catch that will make my new project unique. I believe that this is it. Nothing like this exists in Seattle, and I figure that even if I’m not successful, I might very well catch someone’s eye personally. I’m running the idea by the guys now, so we’ll see where it goes.

Joy Division album cover mystery

UPDATED 06/28/2008

I was just looking at the stats for this particular post, and I noticed that a lot of folks were searching for info about the cover. For all of you, there is good news. I found out the origin and everything with some help of some friends, and I am close to completion of a new typeface based on the design.

For more info, please go the Typophile.com discussion “Joy Division Closer Font“.

If I get enough requests, I’ll publish the font at MyFonts.com.

I always loved the cover of Joy Division’s “Closer” album. The stark simplicity of the design, the evocative photograph of a memorial tomb at Cimitero Monumentale di Staglieno , and of course, the elegant Roman typeface used for the cover and inside covers.
Joy Division Cover

I tried hunting down the typeface used, but I couldn’t find it anywhere. (I haven’t posted it to Typophile yet…) MyFonts.com has a few close matches (Like Friz Quadrata) that would satisfy most people, but they were not quite right.

I was stoked when I found out that Peter Saville, the designer for Joy Division and New Order’s albums, had a website where he posted the fonts that “he” had designed for their use. He had one specifically labeled “Joy Division Closer” font. Unfortunately, the font Saville, or whoever is running the site had posted was totally bogus. It was another font called Helios SSi that someone had slapped a new name on in total violation or the original designer’s moral and copyright laws.

Shame on you! I don’t think that Saville would have done such a stupid thing, because he was a featured guest on Typeradio.org, and you have to be a real type nerd to have been involved in that.

It doesn’t even match the album cover, more the pity.

New Photo Gallery Up!

My new photo gallery is up, so check it out. It’s powered by myGallery 1.4b4. I’ve been trying out a few different gallery scenarios, but this is easily the nicest one I’ve ran across so far. It integrates the photos flawlessly into WordPress, and it uses the super-clean interface of Lightroom or Lightroom 2.

Stay tuned for my design portfolio!

Creating a publishing organization

I‘m currently in the process of creating two new organizations for the purpose of publishing some things that I want to get done in the near future.

One is a continuation of the work I accomplished last year as the head of my school’s photo club (see What’s coming up). We originally conceived and designed that book as a committee, an exceedingly bad idea in my opinion. I had to fight and argue and moan just to keep the design solid, and even then I was fired once. I managed to stay on until the completion of the book, but the whole experience soured me on the idea of printing anything as a college club.

No more. This Spring Quarter, I intend on presenting to the school’s Board of Publications a proposal to create an entirely new organization similar to the ones that create the student newspaper and the literary/arts journal. That way, a solid editorial team can handle everything, with the help of two or three advisors.

I’m midway through the design of the proposal, so I hope to finish soon.

Another idea also mentioned in the same previous post was the idea of creating a Seattle arts/culture magazine. I now have at least two people on board, with the possibility of a whole stable of creatives at my disposal. This one is going to be harder, because for this I will need to actually come up with cash-money. No school funds for me.

I really do think that there is a place for a magazine like this in Seattle. The only Seattle-specific magazines out there are these Yuppie, high brow glossies or low brow trash about tatoos or burlesque. Not a single thing in the mid-range. We have the news weeklies like the Stranger or the Seattle Weekly, but I can’t stand them. Besides, they aren’t magazines. They do tend to cover a lot of the same information, but the still, supposedly, have a journalistic intention.

Not me. I want art. I want fun. I want in depth discussion that you don’t find in any of that trash. And the biggest thing is that I want to be in control.