Archive for the Uncategorized Category

NFB 76/77

Posted by Scott

Sent via Jason Bustin:

“I’m in the process of moving and I came across an old National Film Board of Canada catalogue that was made available for American residents wishing to order 16mm films from the NFB in 1976/77.”

These evolving, MC Escher style designs are great. Especially love the motion metaphor tie in with the NFB. The bowed text at the top is an artifact of correcting for the angle at which the photo of this piece was taken.
I never realized it until I started posting all this stuff, but Canada seems to have a very strong legacy of graphic design, something for which I am not quite sure they are getting their due credit. I didn’t study design in school, is Canadian design a part of the curriculum of most design programs? If not, it should be. Just scroll through the recent entries here and you’ll see lot’s of great examples. I have a lot more coming too.

High Ceilings

Posted by Scott

Love vaulted ceilings, love skylights, love plenty of angles. Is this a home or a cabin? Not sure of the details on this, if anyone has any info let me know in the comments. Obviously a few things could have been handled with a bit more restraint (never been a huge fan of oak), but overall it’s a great feel. If some crazy design comes off the wall and turns into a bed, you really can’t complain much. $20 says there’s a matching Porsche parked out front with perforated leather driving gloves in the console. Seems to be some variant of the Marcel Breuer Wassily Chair in the foreground, name that couch.
Whenever I see setups like this I always wonder who lived in them, did they actually get much use out of the place? Wonder what it looks like now….probably totally gutted and replaced with stock art fake paintings and plastic floral arrangements everywhere.

Update: Via Fisker in the comments “The picture is from the book ‘Decorative Art 70s’ published by Taschen

Design #239

Posted by Scott

Design magazine Issue 239. Very nice color combo, similar to the Mexico Olympics cover. The cover story reads “Perspex and the transparent look”. Perspex is a transparent glass alternative heavily used in 1970’s interior design. They utilized fluorescent colored Perspex for all sorts of furniture and installations. My neighbor had a lot in his old SF Victorian until they remodeled. Should have snagged a picture before they tore it out. The colors featured in the illustration on the cover of this magazine must have been the common choices, as I recall his were all in these tones as well.

Captain Beefheart

Posted by Scott

Here’s a nice example of the Fillmore West style by Wes Wilson. This style is a conglomeration of many of the early 20th century design themes. While a bit less than legible, the illustrative lettering indicative of this style is a work of art in itself. The psychedelic and Art Nouveau themes associated with the Fillmore movement have always been a great inspiration to me but I have always felt them to be a little overstated. When I do explore these themes in my own work I tend to temper them with a more minimalist slant.


Posted by Scott

PDP 8E - ISO50v
Whatever a “Minicomputer” is, this was the first one. It cost almost $15,000 in 1974 making it a pretty, but pricey machine. During this period Digital produced a lot of machines featuring interfaces similar to this. I love the color combos and the excellent grid based design. Those toggle switches complete this bold yet welcoming example of top-shelf 70’s industrial design. The color scheme could be construed as somewhat garish for a computer, but remember, this was the 70’s and they were probably trying to “break the design mold” of this particular class of devices. Unfortunately, soon after these became obsolete the industry veered right back into beige/grey tones and boring, toggle-less interfaces. The only standout enterprise-level computer hardware that comes to mind after this were the Silicon Graphics machines of the 90’s and the Sun Systems stuff around the turn of the century. More info on this particular model is here. I like the “digital” logo and it fits nicely up there in the corner. But I couldn’t resist tweaking the text in the upper right to make it look like a poster. You can click the image to see the original version. I have some examples of similar Digital equipment in blue and green I will be posting soon.
Wanted to add that I love the style of the photo. It’s almost as if it’s a drawing, one of those old product shots that sort of blurs the line between photo and illustration. Wonder how they achieved this? Was it an intended effect or a byproduct of the printing method?