One of the perks of being the managing editor at AIGA is spending my mornings reading design stories and calling it “work.” But not everyone gets to (or wants to) peruse RSS feeds like it’s their job. Consider this a hit list (as well as a few things you may have missed) of the most interesting things I’ve and seen, read and watched this week.
This week I…
…plan ahead with this 2015 Just Type wall calendar, which shows off a different typeface every month and uses various styles and weights for each day of the week. Are your Mondays extra bold, light, or tall? (Why does that sound like a Starbucks order?)
…fall deeper into the design nerd rabbit hole with the unapologetically nerdy “Kern Your Enthusiasm,” a 25-part essay series that asks respected type geeks to dissect some of the best and worst typefaces ever made. We’re talking about whole paragraphs devoted to analyzing the cultural significance of the spaces between letterforms. All your favorites are there: Futura, Akzidenz-Grotesk, Gill Sans, and more. Engrossing, yes, but not for the faint of heart.
…disagree with book cover designer Peter Mendelsund ’s opinion of the original The Great Gatsby (and agree with his assessment of The Sound and the Fury). Plus, I peek into his design process and get wistful about the days when I, too, could look at a book and see only the title and the author (sigh). Speaking of authors, he has two lovely new books out this week (with equally lovely covers), Cover and What We See When We Read.
…raise my eyebrows at recent attempts made by a handful of U.S. libraries to stay relevant by creating 3D printing stations. Yes, libraries should be places for “learning, research, and discovery,” but if that’s the case where’s my local NYPL science lab, CNC router, printing press, and test kitchen?
…try to come up with an excuse to buy the new Scribble pen that can draw in any color, either on paper or on your tablet. A mini sensor and micro processor work with a scanner embedded in the end of the pen to detect the exact color of anything you press it against—a wall, piece of fabric, flower petal, your cat, etc.
…prove that this study about how your name affects basically everything in your entire life is way off base. According to these findings I’m unpopular, difficult to employ, probably a delinquent, a compulsive shopper, poorly educated, incompetent, and yet likely to succeed in a top-ranking position. Wait, I’m unpopular?
…tear up at my desk after watching a 38-year-old Robin Williams trace the etymology of carpe diem for the members of the Dead Poets Society. And then listen to his 2006 conversation with Terry Gross on Fresh Air during which he described the dark side of comedy: “In the process of looking for comedy, you have to be deeply honest. And in doing that, you’ll find out there’s the other side. You’ll be looking under the rock occasionally for the laughter.”
Still have more catching up to do? Check out last week’s (still completely relevant) Design Diary.