Archive for the ‘design’ Category

CTA Seeking Artists For New Red Line Project

Friday, September 14th, 2012

We’ve all been warned about the up-and-coming overhaul to some North Side Red Line stations. While this is undeniably annoying, it’s Friday, and we’re looking to share positive news: The CTA is looking for artists to create work for seven stations scheduled for construction. The idea is that these original pieces of artwork will contribute to each station’s identity, while enhancing travel for customers.

The CTA has more than 50 art pieces at 41 stations along the Pink, Red and Brown Lines.

If you’re planning on entering, know that the competition may be stiff. An evaluation committee will select approximately 25 artists based on artistic merit, qualifications and professional recognition of the artists, as well as written statements of interest. Seven of the selected artists will be offered a commission. Application information is available at


X-Ray Art by Nick Veasey

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

We were immediately drawn to photographer Nick Veasey’s fascinating X-ray images. Each piece of work is composed of a complex collage of multiple x-rays, which are layered and compiled to form the finished product.

He says that his inspiration came from his desire to counter the obsession with superficial appearances by using X-rays to expose what lies beneath the surface. He explains that he likes “to challenge this automatic way that we react to just physical appearances by highlighting the, often surprising, inner beauty.”

We would definitely agree that he has a talent for finding a unique raw, inner beauty.

Is that a crater?! Oh, never mind, that’s just the KFC Logo

Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

One of the biggest issues marketers come across is maintaining awareness of their brand in the public sphere. If you have a great product, but no one sees it, then you really just have an idea. The normal way for maintaining a brand’s awareness is through promotions and advertisements featured in social media, magazines, billboards and otherwise. But apparently that is getting a little too obvious. Now brands are taking their logos and artwork on putting them on a more global spectrum……literally. Take a look at how some brands have made their advertisements and artwork so large, that you can see them in space:

If we’re being honest….

Friday, August 26th, 2011

The logos of a brand or product are supposed to define its personality with one quick glance. They are designed to strike something with the consumer internally that will describe what type of product they are dealing with. For the most part, the logos for major brands are recognizable and go without saying, but what do they really mean?  These revamped logos of major brands take a swing at what people really see when they look at these particular logos:

Alright...kinda sad

These logos and more were found on this website:

Cut it out, cut it all out

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

I’m down for some semi-dark, semi-sarcastic humor as much as the next person, and when you combine that with good art, I’m pretty much giddy with excitement. Let’s be real: sarcasm, when done right, is pretty funny. And art, when done right, is interesting to look at.

William Staehle must have felt the magical connection between design and wit, because he created “Silhouette Masterpiece Theatre,” a site that displays his work with old-timey photos and paintings, cutouts he creates himself and biting, funny captions. Staehle managed to fit the best of the art and dark humor on the site (where, coincidently, all the pictures in this blog are from).

Staehle doesn’t just write random babble: a lot of the captions are based off famous phrases or sayings from earlier times, or he manages to use puns when he can (Dandelion…Dandy-lion…hopefully you got that). Staehle tries to keep it witty and artistic.

This is one of the best. Not just because it's "punny," but because bears are the greatest animals alive.

That’s vintage for ya

Tuesday, July 26th, 2011

Vintage things are one of the best things about life. Actually, apart from love, cake, good photography and cheesy romantic comedies, I can’t think of anything more wonderful than vintage pieces and art. The appeal is the thrill of looking at how the world was before you, depending on what your favorite time period is (I myself am partial to the 1920s). Looking at items from that period is like looking through a time machine, and c’mon—who wouldn’t want to look through a time machine?

Apparently graphic designer and blogger Megan Cummins felt the same way as me, and decided to create Vintage Me Oh My, a blog devoted to all things vintage, all the time. She uses vintage art, ads, photos and typography as inspiration, and she shares all that she has with the general public. (All photos from the Vintage Me Oh My blog.)

A vintage 1920s ad.

An example of vintage-inspiration in signs today.

Brookfield Zoo posters, back in the day (1930s, to be exact).

For all you true vintage-heads out there, check out Etsy’s vintage page, Silver Moon vintage shop in Chicago and and some of the vintage photos from The Sartorialist blog (like, for example, this one). And if you have something cool and vintage to share, Cummins encourages all fans to spread the wealth and email her.

Seriously? How can you not like vintage eras? They give us great gems like these.

The states just got better

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

Wouldn’t it be cool to design a poster describing what each of the 50 states mean to you? New York would be “the state that I would love to live in if it didn’t amount to the cost of a small child.” Florida would be “Mickey-Mouse-and-old-people land.” Maine would simply be “mmm…lobster.” And Illinois? Well… I think I would portray Illinois correctly.

I call it like I see it, people.

That’s kind of the concept of the Fifty and Fifty art print project. Created by design company Society6 (and more specifically, started by designer Dan Cassaro), a different artist was assigned to a different state. They took the motto of the state they were working on, and then created a design around it. (Each of the art prints are on ultra-smooth, 100% cotton rags. Also, each picture below is courtesy of


New Jersey

These designs are made to look classical and aged, and are intriguing as well. It would be interesting to get into the mind of the designer, and see what made them think of their state like that. For example, Illinois is “State Sovereign, National Union” (our state motto)…with hotdog wieners for the I’s.

Why? Are wieners the state food? I think I’ve eaten a total of five hotdogs in Illinois before. Maybe.

Despite the lack of artists’ comments, though, the project is funky, a great, handy way to memorize each state’s saying and another set of designs that I wish were put on T-shirts.

Maryland’s motto, my new mantra.

1+1 equals art

Thursday, July 7th, 2011

I don’t think I need to tell you that math is everywhere. Without geometry, you wouldn’t be able to put your car in a parking space without angry stares. Without addition, you wouldn’t be able to know how much more your recent paycheck is making you richer. And I don’t even need to mention what you couldn’t do without the knowledge of simple fractions.

You wouldn't get an equal portion of my famous macaroni-and-cheese casserole, and you'd be miserable. MISERABLE.

Math can create some wonderful things, and art is no exception. Maryland Institute College of Art student Jordan Sondler uses shapes—whether conventionally or slightly bent—to make illustrations, sketches and doodles. She also writes in cute, block print handwriting to write quirky little captions and text. (All pictures courtesy of

The beautiful Adele, in shapes.

I hope her illustrations soon pops up on T-shirts, bags and the like. Jordan has got some unique talent going on that could work for apparel design. She has things to say with geometrically fun text, and it needs to be shown to more of the world.

Seriously. The girl speaks truth. I want these shapes on a T-shirt.

I hope her illustrations soon become designs on T-shirts, bags and the like. Jordan has got some unique talent going on that could work for apparel design. She has things to say with geometrically fun text, and it needs to be shown to more of the world.

Photos from everyone

Friday, July 1st, 2011

It goes without saying that teamwork is important in day-to-day interactions. What would happen if the Boston Red Sox didn’t cooperate? If the White House Cabinet refused to work together? If the servers at Jimmy Johns constantly ignored each other? America would crumble, that’s what. Or at the very least, Boston baseball would be shamed, Obama’s power would disintegrate and we’d lose out on the best sandwiches known to man. Life would be sad.

Sometimes in art, it’s easy to try and work solo for the sake of letting your own talent and ideas shine through your own work. However, photo group Grasshopper sees the value of working as a team. Even though one photographer may be hired for an editorial or advertising shoot, all of the photographers help and pitch in with their ideas and experience. And don’t think the combination of artist makes for less-than-stellar pictures; in fact, I think because they work together, the photography is stunning.

Courtesy of

The neat thing about Grasshopper is that even though they work closely together, they don’t lose their personal creativity. If you look at the photos hard enough, you’d be able to pick out everyone’s strengths. Jeremy Kohm specializes in whimsical landscapes and shots of carefree yet offhanded people. John Fiorucci does inanimate objects, animals and happy old people. Angela Lewis captures beautiful girls; Kourosh Keshiri does well-known beautiful girls, famous middle-aged men and products for men. And Aristea Rizakos shoots inanimate objects in homes, as well as a few scenes outside of houses.

Courtesy of

Teamwork without conformity. It’s a slightly strange concept, but Grasshopper has won over ten artistic awards, including the Applied Arts Photography Annual award for four years, so they must be doing something right.

A plate is never just a plate

Friday, June 24th, 2011

Whether they want to admit it or not, everyone had a little bit of fascination with the royal wedding. I personally did not get up at five to watch the celebration because, well, sleep trumps Kate Middleton, always. Afterward, however, I poured through pictures and magazine clippings of wedding dresses, ridiculous hats and cost prices for so long, I felt like I should get a Bachelor’s in High Society England Affairs.

Even if you rolled your eyes at the whole spectacle and wore “Go America!” shirts on the 29th of April, your life was probably affected by the wedding, even if it was just your growing annoyance of everyone turning “Middleton” into a household name. And, unless your eyes have been shut closed for the past six months, you’ve also seen all the wedding merchandise. Especially the plates. I understand that the royals are special, but it was all I could do from wanting to throw the dish on the ground (or buying one. I don’t know; I was torn a lot).

Freelance illustrator Owen Davey apparently felt the same thing, and decided to create plates that commemorated the “not-so-special moments of the general public,” according to his blog, “The Things I Do.” After he was done, he had created 33 separate plates that told the stories of 33 separate people living ordinary lives in the great country of Britain.

Courtesy of Owen Davey’s blog.

He didn’t just create stories in his head, however: Davey set up a Twitter account, and asked people to commemorate their lives in a tweet. By asking the commoners about their day, Davey got everything from “went for a bike ride in the sun,” to “I talk to my cats too much but they never answer back.”

Courtesy of Owen Davey’s blog.

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why the general public is amazing.