UPDATE: It was fake, but now it’s real. And it’s going to win everything. Download it now.
Ever since I started working in startup land, I’ve felt the need to ingratiate myself in the ever-buzzing world of *tech*. This means staying up on other companies, the blogs, and the general Silicon Valley scene. This can be very repetitive. People get funded, apps get released, and companies buy things. Sometimes a conference happens. Having spent the better part of the last few years neck-deep in this hullabaloo, I figured it was time to parody it.
As I’ve written before, I currently am working on Nosh. Download it now please, it will give you some context. One of my periodic jobs is to drum up support for our beloved application. Of course we do this the normal way (press releases etc), but when I have a free weekend, I like to try and make something crazy and unusual to help things along. I call it the Skunkworks project (achieve victory by any means possible). We had great success with the 404 page, and the Jotly project was my next move. Continue reading for the full process behind the project.
Albin Holmqvist, Gustav Johansson and Niklas Johansson are really killing it with these new EF Live the Language videos for EF International Language Centers. If you saw the first few, you’ll notice that they’ve really gone above and beyond with this new set. The new locations include Sydney, Australia; Vancouver, Canada; and Los Angeles, California.
Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life opens across the US tomorrow, and these stills for the film look amazing. I’ve purposely been avoiding any news on it so I wouldn’t build up any expectations, but I couldn’t help but look at these images. I rarely go out to watch movies anymore thanks to Netflix, but this looks like something that would really benefit from a trip to the theater.
Flickr user “Advertising Hitchcock” has a large collection of beautiful high-res scans of — as the name implies — original advertising from Hitchcock films. Of particular interest is the Psycho (1960) set, which includes international versions of the release poster. The Italian version is definitely my favorite; considering that the file is generously offered at such a high resolution (1352×2674 @ 300dpi), I’m going to have to fire up the Epson. For some reason made me think of the classic sci-fi covers stuff from Eric Carl. Also be sure to check out the type on the lobby cards; great layout.
Sorry, no information on the designers. Please let me know if you have any names.
Super 8 and 8mm have always been my favorites when shooting video. Although transferring the film to digital has posed problems mainly because of its expense and decline in locations to transfer. The video above by James Miller shows his method for transferring 8mm footage to digital using the beloved 5D Mark II and an Eumig Mark 501 (or the Eumig 610D & the Eumig Mark DL). The end result looks great, is much much faster and way less expensive. Now I just need to get a 1D Mark IV or 5D Mark II.
Hit the jump for more information on the process and the transfer results.
I love film titles, I think most designers do. If you’re looking for a comprehensive collection, Steven Hill’s Movie Title Screens Page is a good place to start. While there is video, there are thousands and thousands of screencaps. Only one shot from each (and you’ll have to look past the old school web design), but it’s a good place to jump off from if you’re looking for some kind of inspiration.
Continuing with the wildly infrequent discussion of brands.
In an era where physicality in media is increasingly discussed, The Criterion Collection, a “publisher of premium editions of classic and contemporary films”, has established a strong customer loyalty through a combination of quality consistency and innovation (early adoption of Laserdisc, DVD and online streaming). Criterion has become one of the most recognized names in a field that isn’t commonly considered to carry prestige brands.
I retroactively discovered Criterion after purchasing one of my favorite films Rushmore, many years ago. The design of the original poster art always left me cold, as it attempt to market the film as a teen rebellion flick, sort of a suburban CHE. The sly illustration of the solitary protagonist WAS the movie to me, which made me put down the extra dollars for this film I knew I’d always own. It was only afterwards that I realized “The Criterion Collection” banner on the side was a mark of a unique brand of curated special editions.
The secret to their success seems multifaceted.
Curation: Criterion has been responsible both for releasing films that have been overlooked, under-distributed and even just unheralded amidst box office success, finding new life given the Criterion treatment. Can Chasing Amy and The Criterion versions often sit alongside the original or Blu-Ray versions, at a higher price, but given the quality of extras, these editions are deemed to be better thought out than their peers.
Scarcity: There is a time frame in which most Criterion releases exist, possibly due to short print runs for lesser known titles or presumably the duration of the license for the film they acquired. The limited nature of these DVDs creates a collector aftermarket eager not to miss out, much like the contemporary vinyl market.
And of course, Design: The quality and uniqueness of their packaging puts them in league with some of the best companies in media today. The design is never of one style, but always of a character that is distinctly theirs. It is a commonly held fact that the best brands are the ones that are able to be parodied. The presence of a ‘Fake Criterions” blog laughs at the prospect of weaker films getting this special treatment (Im a fan of the Air Bud one in particular, very Hoop Dreams).
It could be stated that a Criterion Collection library, sitting alongside a well appointed vinyl and book shelf, will not be something to sneeze at in the Netflix era.
Founders: Robert Stein, Aleen Stein, and Joe Medjuck (company info is rather circuitous)
Identity: Pentagram (Inspiration is here).