Artemis Russell and Nao Utsemi love each other. They also work together to run a jewelry shop, RUST, in London. Artemis runs this blog, tales of a junkaholic where I found—in great detail—all the little facets of their wedding. Which yay, my favorite part, the invitations. And these. Are. Gorgeous. (oh, and also handmade… just like every other little thing from their wedding)
The details are just amazing in this whole wedding. It’s a traditional day in the fact that… a) it’s a wedding. b) bride wore white. c) family and friends attended a celebration. But non-traditional in the fact that it doesn’t look like they succumbed to any obligatory wedding rules that weren’t personal to them—like inviting a million people they aren’t close to, church + hotel ballroom combo, or even the groom wearing pants (shorts? yes please.). See every little thing documented here on her blog.
Frank Chimero is a designer and illustrator. He also teaches graphic design at Portland State. He also has a super active blog. His recent post answers the question, “What advice would you give to a graphic design student?” and guess what—it doesn’t only apply to students. Here’s some of my favorites:
The things your teachers tell you in class are not gospel. You will get conflicting information. It means that both are wrong. Or both are true. This never stops. Most decisions are gray, and everything lives on a spectrum of correctness and suitability.
If you can’t draw as well as someone, or use the software as well, or if you do not have as much money to buy supplies, or if you do not have access to the tools they have, beat them by being more thoughtful. Thoughtfulness is free and burns on time and empathy.
Keep two books on your nightstand at all times: one fiction, one non-fiction.
Develop a point of view. Think about what experiences you have that many others do not. Then, think of what experiences you have that almost everyone else has. Then, mix those two things and try to make someone cry or laugh or feel understood.
Change contexts when you’re stuck.
Learn to write, and not school-style writing. A text editor is a perfectly viable design tool. Graphic design has just as much to do with words as it does with pictures, and a lot of my favorite designers come to design from the world of words instead of the world of pictures.
If you meet a person who cares about the same obscure things you do, hold on to them for dear life. Sympathy is medicine.
Most important things happen at a table. Food, friends, discussion, ideas, work, peace talks, and war plans. It is okay to romanticize things a little bit every now and then: it gives you hope.
Everyone is just making it up as they go along.
And some work from the man:
workspace of Sean Auyeung and Anna Corpron, the husband-wife duo known as Sub-Studio from NYC.
I’ve looked through The Strange Attractor’s Creative Couple series a little while back, but just came across Design Love at the blog of idsgn recently. TSA’s series started in November of ’09 and their last post was in July. They conducted interviews with “creative couples” (designers, artists, illustrators, musicians, etc.) to chat about their work, space, challenges and benefits of working with someone they love. Head over to each interview to read them in their entirety and see accompanying photos, but here’s a couple snippets from the interviews:
From Caleb Beyers and Hanahlie Beise: What are the benefits of living/working together?
C: We’re never really “off the clock” there are no arguments that start with “you’ve just been working too much.” We do go through periods that make us realize how important it is to take breaks, and to make time for each other.
H: The disadvantage would be that we are functioning as a couple and as business partners. It’s hard to be critical of your partner (couple) and take criticism. We have to break down the emotional barriers and comfort zones that most couples face.
And from Melissa & JW Buchanan from The Little Friends of Printmaking:
We’re a team. And I feel like our relationship is stronger for having worked together so much. Sometimes I think about the hours I have to work and the sacrifices I have to make to complete our projects, and I can’t imagine how I would explain or justify that to someone who wasn’t as invested in the process as Melissa.
From Anna Wolf and Mike Perry: What’s it like working with your better half?
A: Amazing. We work really well together. We do travel a lot so that we have our space… and when we’re in the studio together, we go for hours without talking. We just get into our thing and don’t come out of it until the day is over.
M: We both trust each other and believe in each other’s work. But its great because at the same time Anna loves telling me that something of mine sucks. We keep it open and honest. That said we don’t do that many projects together.
The Design Love series asks similar questions, but limits it strictly to designers who both live and work together. In July, idsgn interviewed the husband-wife duo David Heasty and Stefanie Weigler from the Brooklyn studio, Triboro. (A few months back, I posted some photos of the Triboro Leftovers, remember their beauty?)
What are the best and worst parts of living and working together?
We are very fortunate that we work so well together and that we are able to spend so much time together each day. In some ways the traditional business/life structure seems backwards—spending 8-10 hours a day with people you may or may not get along with, while spending the margins of your life with loved ones.
We like that design is a forgiving profession when it comes to combining work/life balance. We know plenty of people who have maintained a design practice while raising kids at home. Technology has made this more possible, but there is something too about the nature of the work that allows for this flexibility. With our schedule we have the luxury to cook our meals, run errands easily or fit in exercise.
(…) A downside to our situation is that the exchange with people at an office can also be very inspiring—all the different personalities and experiences in one place converging. We find now that we get a lot of this inspiration from our client relationships. Another downside is that weekends and evenings are no longer sacred. We find ourselves working a lot.
And a couple others…
C: I don’t think so.
J: No. Next question. [Laughs]
Words. What do words do for us? Are they necessary? Can you live without them? Can you think without them? Can you dream without them?
From a recent Radiolab show is an hour about words. It’s worth a listen. And to accompany the show, a lovely video was created by Daniel Mercadante & Will Hoffman from Everynone with an original score by Keith Kenniff.
I have a habit of keeping a million tabs open at a time in my browser that I want to look at and assume I’ll go back to when I have more time. This page, Black and WTF, has been hanging out for a few days (which sadly means I forget where I found it). It’s a tumblr page that just posts old, often ridiculous, photos sent in by folks everywhere. Here’s some favorites from the first few pages:
Using typography in a way we don’t see every day on the web is this lovely, poetic site from Max Fenton in Brooklyn.
And keeping with the unexpected theme… is his blog read* which is devoid of captioning but rather posts images/screenshots of passages from books or the web. Here’s a few days:
One of the personal projects he posts is polaroid which shows two polaroids, side by side, which you can click each independently of the other to change the pair. If that doesn’t make sense, check it out and it will. Pretty great.
Over this past weekend (oh… is it Wednesday already…?) we found this beauty of a typewriter at a local rummage sale for FIVE dollars:
It seems to be in decent shape apart from the carriage not advancing on its own. Though, neither one of us knows anything about typewriters, so maybe that’s actually a really difficult/expensive problem to have. We’ll see. From some small research, I think it’s a model 17 (as seen here) from Remington Rand, which was produced from 1939-50 with a couple different variations during that time. Also, it’s remarkably heavy… not good for transporting, or inevitable relocation of living space. But it sure does look good sitting on the dresser right now.
We’ll have to take it to a local shop to see what the cost would be to repair it. But until then, there’s plenty of lessons to be learned.