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Archive for the Random Nostalgia Category

Swissair: Behind the Logos


Swiss Airlines has a rich history that has been hidden in the archives for quite some time. On March 26th, 1931 when Swissair formed, I doubt anyone at the time really considered the history that they were going to be making with the company’s design. Balair and Ad Astra were the two companies that merged to form Swissair. Throughout the years they’ve changed logos many times but there was one that was most memorable (above). Quite possibly it was the best logo that the company has ever used.

Thanks to SR692 for collecting this information so that we’re able to walk through past logos used by Swissair. Some great, some not so great and a few that were very, very experimental. Hit the jump to see how the company logo changed throughout the years.

Via Wanken

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SwissAir Posters







Recently I’ve stumbled upon SR692—quite possibly the best collection of SwissAir collateral. It is definitely the biggest collection and had these gems stowed deep within. Most of these posters were came from the 50s to the 70s archives on the site. The few I’ve posted are very straight forward as you can see. Simply utilizing the generic airplane icon, a headline and the SwissAir logo—part of what makes these posters so unique.

Via Wanken

Volkswagen Literature 1938-1970








Just hearing the name Volkswagen makes me think deep history. Especially now after stumbling upon a Volkswagen archive that has scans from Everett Barnes’ collection. It’s well worth checking out if you have the time. The collection starts from the early 1930s’ and goes all the way until 2005. It has nearly more images and spreads of brochures and random Volkswagen nostalgia than you can shake a stick at.

View the full archive

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Atari Computer Concepts










You may find this entirely crazy but growing up I was only graced with the opportunity to play an Atari once. Even though I wasn’t born in the 70s and barely born in the 80s, the Atari console seemed really cool but I still never owned one. I hope I’m not the only one out there that wasn’t able to log hours on an Atari as a kid. Looking back at them now, I would have bought the 2600 in a heart beat for the sake of the small yet stylish wooden veneer accent.

These drawings were really making leaps and bounds between concepts. In some of the drawings parts were nixed and replaced with other ideas. The cooling fans for example get moved back and forth as the concept progresses. Seeing stuff like this is very inspiring; it gives me a target to aim at for progressing my own sketches for future projects.

Images via Colorcubic & Atari Museum.

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1980s Vintage Porsche Ads





It’s funny how a lot of those things that you thought were boring when growing up, are now actually really fun things to do. I never would have thought I’d spend a sunny Seattle Saturday sifting through tubs and tubs of posters and ads. But its a damn good thing I did because I found these vintage Porsche ads. I was tempted to purchase all of them but instead I wrote down some info and looked them up online. All of these ads I found on eBay and were from the 1980′s. A few of them might be late 70′s, but it’s tough to tell.

The thing I really like about these ads is that they feel authentic. That’s not to say that ads nowadays aren’t authentic but there is certainly more than enough CGI being done to them. It also seems like it’s rare to see such nice large type of this treatment in ads anymore.

Sander from the comments informed us that Helmet Krone was the designer behind these ads—more info here.

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Atomic Rainbow Over Honolulu

Posted by Scott



Just caught this on NPR and was reminded of a couple great films: the William Shatner Narrated Trinity and Beyond (The Atomic Bomb Movie) and Nukes in Space: The Rainbow Bombs. Both were excellent docs that featured meticulously restored film footage from US atomic tests on land and in space (and also anywhere else they could make up a reason to blow up). The space tests are particularly (eerily) beautiful, the title Rainbow Bombs is very apt.

Happy 4th!

Alex Varanese

Posted by Scott







We’ve posted on him in the past, but I’ve seen Alex Varanese around a lot lately so I thought I’d put up some more of his work. He made a splash on Reddit yesterday, making it all the way to the front page (which, for the uninitiated, is sort of a big deal — at least among geeks and programmers) with his recent Alt/1977 series. This sort of overt retro-ism doesn’t always settle well with me (Yes, perhaps the pot calling out the kettle, but I’m a fan of restraint in these circumstances), but Alex executes so well you can’t help but take notice. His mastery of the orange spectrum is unquestioned and while there is a bit of borrowing from the James White bag of tricks — and with some of the type-centric work, maybe more overtly so, Alex Trochut — it is a very focused and impressive collection of work. I don’t think I’ve seen 3D meld so well with this sort of textured print aesthetic in a while and the noise he’s getting in those color fields is spot-on.

Check out more at Alex’s Behance and check out this process piece Alex did for Signalnoise.

Expo 67 Passport

Posted by Scott







As evidenced by the various posts I’ve made on the subject, I’m quite fond of all things surrounding the World’s Fair Expositions. So when I found this gem on Ian Henry Smith’s Blog, Smallcano, I was pretty blown away. For someone who has fetishized all manner of official documentation since childhood, seeing an artifact that somehow combines the ideas of a passport and a 60′s-era World’s Fair Expo was pretty much the holy grail. The stamps send this thing over the top; it really doesn’t get any better. And check out the Habitat 67 stamp on the last image! I swear I’m going to get a tattoo of one of these.

According to Ian from Smallcano, he found this thing while “rooting around in [his] parents’ basement”. For me, this is basically the equivalent of those old stories about digging up a cigar box with a Honus Wagner in it. My only gripe is that the images are scans and not photos; scans don’t do objects like this justice. So Ian, if you’re reading this (I found the link through a comment he left here), thanks so much for posting these, but please shoot the passport on a nice wood table or something, a’la Insect54. That is, if you have the time, we’ll all thank you!

Via Smallcano