how do you break up



Mad Love for David Lawrey & Jaki Middleton

OMIGOSH omigosh omigosh. So this morning I'm perusing It's Nice That, my favorite art/design blog (for lots of reasons), and see this awesome little video depiction of Michael Jackson which uses a zoetrope (!!!) & I just have to check out the rest of this duo's work.

If you're a film history lover like me, you'll enjoy their methodology. These guys are Aussies whose "collaborative practice draws on popular visual culture, art history and cinematic traditions to create works that engage the viewer via optical phenomena, juxtaposition and repetition." Cinematic parlor tricks & -tropes galore. Take what you will from the "meaning" of the works; the simple visual effects and careful re-appropriation of old-school tricks like Pepper's Ghost are enough reason to appreciate their works.

Some of my favorites: Magic Mountain, which references not only Edward Scissorhands but also the pinnacle of my sixth-grade birthday party & beginning of obsession with horror film & cinematography, The Shining. How's that for a run-on sentence?

In another delightfully creepy Kubrick reference, Forever and ever and ever uses a mechanical Thaumatrope to juxtapose a Diane Arbus photo of twins with an image of the hallway from The Shining. Twins are just plain scary anyway, dopplegangers with mystical powers. I've never met a set of twins that didn't freak me out, and this is another reason why (sorry.)

Finally, in a very visually reminiscent style of Michel Gondry, You're not thinking fourth dimensionally is a piece with a great title that uses the Pepper's Ghost effect to produce a ghost train. Watch the vid, and remember how great it was to ride the Tower of Terror at Disney.

Looking at these pictures, I realize another element in the allure of their work: the perspective of a single viewer.


home is where the potential typefaces are

I'VE HAD THIS LITTLE IDEA on the brain since the last time I was in NC...April-ish. My Mom has loads of really neat antiques...dishware, prints, books, jewelry, etc. Who knows where most of them are from; my mom was adopted and is by far the youngest person alive on that side of the family, so a lot of the stories with these objects were taken to the grave when the previous owner passed.

I had never really thought about this before, but I'm sure the visual environment you're brought up with somehow informs your style later on. Not to say you have to be surrounded by amazing objects your whole life; maybe if you grow up around wicker & shag rug you can take away an uncanny sense of irony. Same way, maybe, if you're raised in the burbs, in some cookie cutter crap. Obviously this isn't the only thing that informs creative folk, but in my case at least I think it did.

Before I ramble on anymore I'll get to my original idea: taking elements from all of this stuff and developing a typeface, or at least a set of vector images. I don't claim to be a type designer, but I loooove the idea. I mean think about it. Antiques are generational; there's always going to be a battle over them amongst the kinfolk, and every time they're passed down, the objects take on new meaning (in a new physical environment, they age, stories about them become more folklore-ish. You know what I mean.)

It just seems appropriate for me to do something like this right now, as well. I spent 9 months away in Idaho somewhat disconnected from my family, and I didn't do much designing while I was out there. For fear of using a cliché I won't up & say "I'm finding myself" through this...but it's a good, fun thing to focus on for a little bit.

Anyway here are a few snapshots from Le iPhone of a few objects I have in mind. I ESPECIALLY like the black mountain-looking thing. (Sorry, at a loss for words...) Surprisingly, because I'm already so, so over the glam rock look in all the fall fashion magazines.