Graphic Design Halloween Costumes 3

It’s that time of year again when leaves change, the sky gets a crisper blue, the evenings cool down, you pull out your big cozy sweaters and cuddle up with your favorite someone over hot apple cider. Well actually, here in San Francisco, not that many leaves change, and your sweaters are already in heavy rotation after our freezing cold summers… but it still somehow feels undeniably like Fall now.

And that means Halloween is almost here, and the challenge of coming up with a fun graphic-design-related Halloween costume is once again upon us. As I unfortunately will be missing Halloween this year, here are some costume suggestions for all the other designers out there, and I hope you guys do something incredible!

Villains and Horror Shows

X-acto, Chip Kidd’s Batman Nemesis in “Batman: Death by Design”

The famous book cover designer Chip Kidd, who I’ve written about before, has written several books including an issue of Batman titled “Death by Design.” The premise is pretty amazing, with architecture- and construction-related villains wreaking havoc on Gotham City, including the punny “X-acto” named after a designer’s best trimming & cutting friend (read more about the plot). Talk about the perfect design villain costume! This woman’s silver-gloved get-up and fabulous headpiece are great inspiration for a pretty epic DIY costume. (source)

Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - X-Acto

 

The Death of Print

Whether you think claims of an inevitable “death of print” are baseless fear-mongering or an informed view of a technological revolution, this costume allows for fun, dramatic, nerdy, puny creativity—all my favorite costume characteristics! (source)

Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - Death of Print

Bad Kerning

I wasn’t able to find an example of this costume already done, but I feel like there is a lot of potential here. Whether you’re using bad kerning to make silly click/dick jokes, or just trying to horrify your designer friends, there’s plenty of room for fun. One idea is going with a group where each person is a different letter, and spend the evening playing with ways to be improperly spaced—lots of photo ops!

Internet Related

In previous costume post, I featured Internet-themed costumes such as the Firefox Logo and an 8-Bit Avatar. Recently I found a few great additions to this collection—meme, app and emoji inspired costumes. Check out these hilarious black-and-white greeting-card ladies (source), classy app icons, emoji group (source), and beer-drinking smiling pile of poo!

Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - eCardsPixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - App IconsPixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - EmojisPixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - Emojis

Follow Ups from Previous Posts (I and II)

Some great new ideas for a Pixelated costume:

Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - Pixelated 1 Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - Pixelated 2 Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - Pixelated 3

… and new ideas for Famous Artwork, especially the Roy Lichtenstein girl:

Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes

Last Minute Costume

My favorite Easy Out costume this year is to get together with some buddies for a CMYK costume. With other group sizes, you could do a 3-person as RGB or a couple as BW. And if you’re the only costume-procrastinator, there’s always my favorite from the last post, Error 404: Costume Not Found.

Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - CMYK

And finally, if you want to bring your design-related Halloween theming to an all time high, try your hand at carving a Pantone Pumpkin!

Pixel and Pilcrow - Graphic Design Halloween Costumes - Pantone PumpkinEnjoy your Halloween!

Hey, Type Girl

The Hey, Girl meme has spread far and wide, and at this point is rather old hat. But typography jokes are few and far between, and as we type nerds  get so few chances to share our industry inside jokes I couldn’t resist sharing this collection, despite its lack of timeliness. Plus, there’s nothing wrong with adding a little extra Ryan Gosling to your day… Enjoy!

Hey Girl Leading Hey Girl Fleurons Hey Girl Ligature Continue reading Hey, Type Girl

Reading the Web

Reading on the web can be annoying. Websites are often crowded with additional features, graphics, ads, navigation, alternative content, links, and who knows what all else. Every little thing pulls at your attention, drawing your eyes away from the text you are trying to read.

This is the polar opposite of reading a book. In a book, you get the text, perhaps a page number and chapter title in the corner, and that’s it. Even reading modern ebooks, for example on the kindle, you usually still just get text and some information tucked in at the bottom about how far through the book you are.

So what’s up with the web? Why can’t web designers control their impulse to put anything and everything on the page next to the text? The answer is, they’re starting to, and we can see this in both the NYTimes redesign and Medium, the latest venture of Twitter cofounder Evan Williams.

NYTimes.com Redesign

The NYTimes.com previous site design was just as bad as anyone in terms of loading up the page with distracting extras. Below is a screenshot, where I’ve highlighted which part of the screen is actually taken up by the article (including the article’s picture):

Old NYTimes Design

Compare that to the new NYTimes.com design, where they’ve recognized how much better of an experience it is when the screen isn’t completely cluttered:

NYTimes Redesign6Because they still need to make money from ad revenue, there is an ad at the top. But notice how I could say “an ad”—there’s just one. And there are still links to share the content online and go to other sections, but they’re kept to strictly defined areas that don’t compete visually with the article. Typographically, the article title now grabs your attention as the most important text on the page, and the social media icons are now all the same color so they’re less visually distracting. And now look at what happens when you start reading the article:

Continue reading Reading the Web

To Resolve

I just stumbled across the To Resolve Project by Chris Streger. A little late for 2014, but I decided to jump on the bandwagon anyway—it’s still the first week of the new year, after all! Here’s Streger’s description of his project: “You create a list, stuff it away in a drawer and it never sees the light of day till the year has passed. I decided to ask as many talented designers I knew (or didn’t know) to create a resolution for the new year as an iPhone background.” It’s so smart, because lets face it, putting it on my phone makes it a practically constant reminder of my resolution!

I decided my main resolution for this year was to focus on finishing my thesis project, and really power through so I can graduate in May. Rather ironically, I designed this iPhone background reminder for myself while was supposed to be working on my thesis project…

No Distractions | Chase Your Dreams, Rebecca Wright

Download this design for iPhone 5 (left) or iPhone 4 (right). All work copyright Rebecca Wright:

ToResolve_NoDistractions_iPhone5    ToResolve_NoDistractions_iPhone4iOS7

Here’s a collection of some of my favorite designs from 2014 and the design archives at toresolveproject.com. They seemed to group themselves into a few themes—using technology, changing actions, and being a better person.

Using Technology

Step Away, Riley Cran, 2012Step Away by Riley Cran, 2012 (iPhone 4)

Make Shit By Hand, Cory Roberts, 2012Make Shit by Hand by Cory Roberts, 2012 (iPhone 4)

Put Down Yer Friggin' Phone Already, Curtis Jinkins, 2011Put down yer friggin’ Phone already! by Curtis Jinkins, 2011 (iPhone 4)

Just Do It!

See New Sights, Justin Mezzell, 2014See New Sights by Justin Mezzell, 2014 (iPhone 5)

Continue reading To Resolve

Graphic Design Halloween Costumes 2

It’s that time of year again, and I have no idea what I want to be for Halloween. Despite a rather random desire to perhaps wear a wig, I’ve got zero inspiration. So I started looking around for some graphic design-related outfits. There are some fun ones out there, so I thought I’d share this collection with you; categories include typography costumes, Pantone costumes, web design costumes, and famous art costumes).

Typography Costumes

I’ve always thought it’d be fun to go as a letterform, but have never really figured out how to make it work. For example could your hands be serifs, if you did it just right? I haven’t figured it out yet, but here are some ways other people have made it work for them.

The first option seems to be body paint (the face paint example is from a fun article in The Atlantic):

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Font Paint

The second popular technique is cardboard construction:

rbg6-konstfack3RBG6_konstfack4  cb_no2b

Pantone Costumes

These seem like a great idea—easy to make, easy for other people to get, and easily customizable—you can go as whatever color fits your mood. Not that original, but you’re still probably not likely to run into another Pantone color at your Halloween party. The second one’s a little bit weird because it’s actually a Barbie outfit, but it’s still kind of a cool idea…

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Pantone Costume

Web Design Costumes

My original graphic design costume post featured a couple of webby/pixelated get ups that were surprisingly effective, so I went searching for some more web-related options this year. My favorites include an 8-bit mask, a last minute 404 Error tshirt, and a fantastic Firefox logo.

Dan-Liuzzi-8bit-halloween-costume-05-600x400

r-LAST-MINUTE-HALLOWEEN-COSTUMES-large570

Firefox logo costume

Famous Design Costumes

And finally, some pretty impressive replicas of famous design and artwork. I featured a Lichtenstein girl in the last costume round up, but I found another really impressive version, complete with speech bubble, that I decided I had to include. There’s also a surrealist Son of Man costume, AND, my favorite of all of these ideas, a costume of the best Banksy artwork out there: the bouquet grenade. I’m betting it takes a lot of work to get the costume looking this good, but this guy did a stellar job!

Roy Lichtenstein costume

small_son of man halloween costume

bansky-costume

Tweeting the AIGA GAIN Conference

This past October 9th and 10th I was lucky enough to get to attend the AIGA GAIN National Conference. This year the two-day affair was held at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, a mere 2 blocks from my school, and I bought student tickets early enough in advance that they only cost an arm, not an arm and a leg.

The official GAIN iPhone App

The schedule kept me hopping—it was a Tuesday and Wednesday, which is when I have a total of 9 hours of classes, but I managed to go to all of the talks, two full classes and half an hour of the third class, and finish my homework! Not much sleep at all in those 48 hours, but I have to say it was definitely worth while. I thought AIGA did a phenomenal job of lining up speakers, and except for the very last session I thought everyone had something really interesting and inspiring to say. So often I’ve heard design speakers who are good, but end up repeating advice that I’ve heard over and over again, or has a story that isn’t particularly engaging or unusual.

This year the theme was social good, so all the presentations revolved in some way about the role that design can play in helping improve society. I noticed a lot of audience members taking notes in some way shape or form, often on ipads or laptops. Since this year I’m the Director of Communications for the AAU AIGA student group, I decided to take my notes by live-tweeting the event under the @AAUAIGA twitter handle. It was actually a lot of fun, especially the interaction with the other tweeters in the audience. It felt like we were having a conversation about the conference, getting opinions and feedback, while it was still taking place.

Below is my twitter stream for the two day conference. It’s a bit long, but there are lots of links to the various projects mentioned during the talks, retweets from other designers who attended GAIN, and some hopefully interesting and insightful quotes from the speakers. Enjoy!

Day 1: Tuesday, October 9th

Kicking off the #GainConference general session! Excited and lucky to have it in our backyard at the YBCA pic.twitter.com/zDlJ1KWs

Continue reading Tweeting the AIGA GAIN Conference

A Cover Collection

Here are some of my current favorite book covers from my Pinterest board for cover designs. Let me know what you think, or if you have any other suggestions for favorites!

“To Kill A Mocking Bird” cover designed by Aafke Brouw.

Lovely, simple, arresting design, and a new take on a classic book (original pin link leads here).

“Jane Eyre” cover designed by Megan Wilson.

Simplistic yet arresting design; fresh take for a classic book. The simple triangle graphic addition add just the right amount of detail. Original pin link goes to The Book Cover Archive.

If you haven’t heard of The Book Cover Archive yet, it’s an awesome resource. I have yet to explore it thoroughly, but every time I stumble into it, I stumble out happy. I recommend losing some time there when you can.

Continue reading A Cover Collection