High Five

I ran across this amongst the Tumblrs quite awhile ago. I have no idea who drafted this clever little cartoon, but the simple juxtaposition is splendid.

UPDATE: Thanks to an anonymous commenter who let me know this is from the New Yorker.


Black Velvet Magic

Before reading  this post, I recommend cueing up Martin Denny in Pandora and then give this a look…

I came across these black velvet paintings and had to post them. Robb Hamel reinvents the scholcky black velvet medium as anything but schlock.

Here's what the artist says about the paintings:

“…my work is based on a range of values (levels of brightness) that have a certain effect on the human psyche, especially with respect to the sense of mood. Translation: my paintings are not the screamingly bright things that people have come to expect from todays art. One reviewer described them as "brooding" - this is my exact intent.”

Mahalo nui loa.

Via Boing Boing

Bad Ideas: The Skircle

File this one under, “Ideas I”m glad never occurred to me.”

Via The Skateboard Mag.


The Tweets

I’m a sucker for old film posters. So much so, I'd love to bedazzle my pad with ’em. But lack of time, energy, attention span…

I also love mashups.

Just get a load of these Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds themed posters reflecting social media's impact on the Arab Spring.

Marcel Paris put these together for France’s Channel 24.

Via I Believe in Advertising.



I spotted this advertisement for Braun’s Multistyler several weeks ago and thought it was delightful. And just when I was burned on everything emoticon.



Way, way back in the day, my best friend Todd Irvine and I would break into his hippy-parent’s record collection and lay the needle down on a Frank Zappa collection of misfit music, Zapped. By far our favorite cut was Wild Man Fischer’s Merry Go Round, which, I've got here for you to listen to and share with the kids.

Click to have a listen.


The Design Process

I fell upon this while exploring the Interwilds. I have no idea who to credit (if it’s you, let me know so that I may give credit where credit is due).

So often the process starts with step four and jumps immediately to step seven.


Nobody will ever convince me that doing more poorly is better than doing less well.

If you'd like this to hang above your drafting table, Click here.


Print Cart

Just take a look at this fantastic print cart.

Back in the day I used to screen decks at a little indie Skateboard company, first in in Los Osos, then in San Luis Obispo, California. At Smallroom we built our own silkscreen print carts, drying racks and mini halfpipe to complete the scene.

Recently, I stumbled across a blog post from back in 2010 on Printeresting about a poster exhibition called Printervention. The show’s theme is around the styling and substance of the posters from the WPA and feature contemporary artist’s work that reflect current social and political grumblings.

The print cart was put together by Mike Slaterry and details of the cart and highlights from the show can be seen on their Flickr pool.

Hey Mike Slattery (whoever you are), wanna find a new home for your cart? Drop me a line.


Smallroom Skateboards Card

A very long time ago on the Central Coast of California their lived a micro-skateboard company called Smallroom. That's where myself and my wife Betsy worked alongside Louis Carlton. We screened boards, went to school and skated into the salty-aired coastal nights. Sigh.

Just take a look at this business card Louis put together in the ’zine style he was infamous for. Nowadays, I think Louis is working as an art director for Merrell over in Portland, U.S.A.



For your viewing pleasure, a timelapse motion picture featuring artist Mark Ryden. Go Abe, go!


New Feature:

As all of my loyal visitors know, I often stumble through periods of blog inactivity. Therefore, you may have taken note that I haven't posted in nearly a month. In an effort to remedy my dereliction to putting fingers to keyboard, I am introducing a new feature called Meeting Notes.

The story is this:
As part of my day job at Marlin I occasionally sit through a meeting. I say occasionally with a small sense of pride in that a Marlin meeting — at least for me — is always dead productive. But alas, I have the attention span of a gnat, and as such, I engage in doodling to keep my mind supple to absorb the substance of a meeting’s malay (I'm pretty sure I'm using malay wrong, and I'm trying not to infer malaise, so I say let alliteration reign).

In fact, doodling was (and maybe is) the possible subject matter of my thesis. I believe, and have seen some writing that supports my conclusions, that doodling helps a creative mind stay engaged in things like school lectures, management seminars and creative staff meetings.

So, from here on out, I will sprinkle my posts with doodles done on this end of a project meeting. To kick it off, get things going, or to simply let the other show drop, here's a salutation from our head of accounts:


Apple ][ to the Tune of Jed

Jed’s Other Poem (Beautiful Ground) from Stewdio on Vimeo.

If you know me you know I love Grandaddy. But you may not know I programmed on an Apple ][ back in high school in 1984. But I didn't know it either as I got a couple of freshmen code geeks to do most of it for me. In honor of the two forgotten coders, and for the love of all that is Grandaddy, I give you Jed’s Other Poem (Beautiful Ground) form the album The Sophtware Slump by Stewart Smith.


App Cloud

It’s been some time since I’ve posted anything (curses to you prosperity and popularity!). Anyway, hero Brad Hill of TAP turned me on to this very cool cloud based app called, well CloudApp.

Simply put, It’s a file sharing platform that works seamlessly with the Mac OS. It has two parts: an app that displays up on your toolbar (which is a little cloud, that acts as a progress bar and glows blue when your upload is complete), and a browser-based management tool called My CloudApp.

They have a slick little idea called Raindrops. They appear to be like scripts which you can do stuff like: Set it up to automatically upload screenshots. Through a hot key, upload a selected song from iTunes, or send up a Keynote presentation to access later. And then you can share all these files with whomever you choose. It’s dead simple and dead useful.

This is version 1.0 and there is room for improvement (like a simple share button, no apparent login on the home page, or unaware when I'm on their blog that I just came from My CloudApp and might want to scurry back without the browser’s back button). But I'm sure improvements are on the way.

And the best part: It’s free! It appears they have a pro version in the works which would do away with ads (which aren't there yet).

My advice, keep your feet on the ground and your head in the clouds and don't just check it out, sign up.


Mr. Frenchy Frenchy French Man

It’s rare for my wife and I to find time to watch a movie, but a few months back we managed to sneak in Julie & Julia [WARNING: Link Autoplays sound]. Anyway, it inspired the purchase of Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and that is the subject of this post.

Actually, it’s the French Onion Soup, pictured above, that is the subject of this post. Now that we have the subject out of the way, let’s move on to the body of this post. With the exception of securing five generously proportioned tureens, Ms. Child’s recipe was easy enough to make. And finally, the conclusion of this post: It was delicious.


Glendale High Tennis Crest

Andy, my 17-year-old tennis prodigy, is playing his final year for Glendale High here in Springfield. As co-captain and graduating senior he gets to pick the team’s uniform and logo: That’s where I come in. Above is the crest Andy and I decided upon, featuring the school’s falcon mascot, crossed rackets and clenched balls (ha!), the founding date and the year of application.

Go Glendale! Go Andy!

UPDATE: I have replaced the art with correct school colors, Columbia Blue and red.


Honorable Mention

How to Fulfill the Demands of the Art of Pastry Chefdom has earned an honorable mention in the Letterhead Fonts 2009 Design Competition.

Chuck Davis of Letterhead Fonts wrote, “It is a beautiful, understated design.”

To see the three winners and two honorable mentions, click here.

I’m all a dither.


iPad: A Lesson in Projection

All jokes aside, the overwhelming reaction of the geek class of pundits are missing the point: Apple’s iPad is not for them, at least not yet.

The Steve did say it was between a smartphone and a laptop, not a new device to replace them.

Geeks, powerusers, programmers, and yes, designers are all frowning on the Pad because it doesn't do anything for them. Or should I say, it doesn’t do anything more for them. I’m calling this projection, or projecting what they know, what they’re used to and most importantly, what more they want form the next iGadget.

Here's what they don’t get: It’s not for them. It’s for the un-them.

Apple’s iPad is for my wife. She loves Facebook. She loves family photos. She loves making photo albums in iPhoto. She emails, browses the web a little, shops a little, watches a movie or two on her iPhone the handful of times she travels, pay bills online and that’s it.

The iPad is for my daughter. She does just about everything my wife does (except pay bills).

Apple’s tablet is for my mom who has never figured how to use a computer let alone set one up, install software, manage all the cables, printers, scanners, external hard drives, burning CDs, backing up, viruses, connecting to the internet, email, blah blah blah.

The absence of multitasking, Flash, a camera, an always there physical keyboard and whatever else the computing class have grown accustomed to, all amount to stuff that's done on devices that the iPad is not trying to be. And though the iWork stuff was pretty amazing, it’s stuff my wife, daughter and mom don't really care much about.

So, instead of looking at what the iPad is not, the important thing to remember is what it is: (present company excluded) A computer for the rest of us.

I think I just projected back in time.



I stumbled upon the Booth Ranches Black Box I drafted In the produce department at the Price Cutter in Springfield, Missouri, while shopping for ingredients for leek soup. The box is cool. The soup was hot.