Type-Lock Trend 2013/2014

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Type-Lock Trend. It’s a different kind of name to refer to a type of Typography that we have all become accustomed to looking at. It’s everywhere. It’s on posters, flyers, the web. Everywhere. It is difficult to pull off. There are all the different weights of the different fonts, the mixing of sans, and serif. The distribution of space evenly, while keeping rhythm and a flow. Knowing how to keep an eye from wandering, knowing how to keep an eye reading in the proper order. Being able to convey and show the words that have the most meaning in the piece. Tricky stuff, I tell you. Yet, everyday it is pulled off. But how many pull it off successfully? And have we saturated the market with it too much?

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We see this trend used in so many ways, but one of the most popular is on the web at sites, such as Pinterest, in quote form. As a way to inspire, whether spiritually, or intellectually. Arrows, swirls, lines, script, print….It’s all there in each piece. Each time arranged slightly differently. What is it about this trend that we seem to find so interesting? Is it the movement that the piece causes the eye to make? Is it that it is just so pleasing? Is it the quotes, themselves, regardless of the design? (No, I doubt that one.)

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I know that I just enjoy, personally, seeing how a designer has used the different fonts to compliment each other. I also enjoy the little touches of art, and the flow that the fonts bring. Out of the examples here that I have shared today, the middle quote in Type-Lock is my favorite in the over all appearance, while the first is my favorite for the use of color and the last one, well, I like the quote. Lol… I guess it’s safe to say, at least for me, that I enjoy this trend, but do hope it doesn’t become something that over-saturates the market. Please, enjoy this link: http://www.fontriver.com/blog/trends_in_typography_the_lockup_look/  , to read more on this trend and what others are saying.

Birth announcement!

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I shared with you all not too long ago the layout for this design. All I was waiting for was little Cooper to make his big entrance into the world. And here he is!

As I may have mentioned before, the colors and “monsters” were taken from the baby shower theme. And, the nursery. Planning ahead, and being allowed to do so, was wonderful as little was needed to be done except for minor adjustments. Less than 24 hours later and we are ready for print!

Glassware for beer

snifter1 stout tulipBeer, especially in other countries then America, is treated as something special, each and every time someone orders. At times, the different companies will release a special glass along with the beer. This glass is used to enhance the experience a patron will have while enjoying the product. But, here in America, many people do not know this. This is, and can be a foreign concept. A wonderful company located nearby is taking this and preparing to educated those of us who did not know. I have had the wonderful privilege of helping them, by designing labels for different types of glassware used for beers, so that when they have classes or patrons, they can have conversations about the glassware, and the glasses are well labeled. Here I have shared my examples. More information about the types of glassware that goes with the different types of beers is available at http://beeradvocate.com/beer/101/glassware.

Overused Trends

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Helvetica. Comic Sans. Flourishes. Circles. Sun rays. Splatters. Flowing lines. Smoke texture. Reflected images. Torn, scruffy paper. These are just a few of the so called “overused”. You can go to Pinterest and see a nice picture with a fading or abstract light background with quotes slapped on them in Helvetica, the most used (and considered the most neutral) of all the fonts, in thousands and thousands of posts. Comic sans has popped up on and in the most inappropriate documents and places, like official police warnings and on plaques that adorn important physical places. Flourishes, once used to give pieces a regal and important feeling, are everywhere. Circles used in abundance, at all sizes and widths, to give a vintage vibe to images…Sun Rays, splatters, smoke textures…Reflections. They are everywhere. Design overkill. The masses have access to what was once considered a mystery domain. And they don’t know HOW to use what they have their hands on. Not in pleasing ways. And when they do know, or figure out, a way that is pleasing, they use it to the death.

The most interesting thing here, though, is…we are ALL guilty of it. Because we mistake what we are seeing as trends. When in reality they are a hybrid of trends that won’t die and the general public’s overuse. It has been long known that through out history, that once we (as human beings) find things that we are comfortable with, we stick with them…even when it’s no good for us any longer. Then a “rule breaker”, or a person who has “thought outside of the box”, comes along and “surprises” us with an improved design, only to have pulled the wool over our eyes, because all they have done is taken what we are comfortable with and played with it, and made it their own; their signature look. And then a designer will REALLY think outside of the box, and give us all a beautiful piece, and the masses (public and design trained, alike) will clamor to imitate it. And the cycle is begun all over again.

There are  tricks to using these overused design habits. Like really knowing WHEN Comic Sans is appropriate (if ever). Knowing HOW to make one of these “trends” one of your own signature pieces…Knowing how to be original. And let’s face it. With design at EVERYONE’S fingertips, it is hard to be original. It is hard to think for yourself when the computer is at the ready and stock images (free and paid-for) are at the ready always.

So, I challenge us all, as DESIGNERS to close our computers and grab a sketch pad. Even if you don’t know how to draw…It’s not about drawing. It’s about getting your original thought, your original idea, onto a page, before you research images on the computer. It’s about pulling from your subconscious. It’s about finding that piece of you that will forever become embedded ORIGINALLY within a design, rather than looking through stock images or pulling from another designer- or worse, pulling from an amateur who didn’t know better, when we’ve been trained to know.

Pantone releases the 2014 color trends for spring/summer

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Well, I was exploring the trends that are going to be…since we are in the middle of 2013, and we are always looking forward…I found Pantone released their color predictions for spring/summer of 2014.

Pantone is a wonderful reference for all designers, whether you are focused in interior, graphic, print, web…

The colors and palettes that Pantone has predicted for the coming season are not too off from what we’ve been using already. The difference is that the use of the colors are changing. Not just the tones and such. While bold is still a huge hit, the way it is used is predicted to be different. Bold colors will be more harmonious and modulated.

Pastels are predicted to go in two directions. A shaded, grown-up version, and a floral, more playful version.

As always, Pantone allows designers to buy their colors and the palettes before they hit the market. Please follow the link at the bottom of this article to find out more….

Pantone LLC, an X-Rite company and the global authority on color and provider of professional color standards for the design industries, today announced the Spring/Summer 2014 edition of PANTONE® VIEW Colour Planner. Looking at color as a language, this multi-discipline color forecast, titled Portal, highlights the key palettes for women’s wear, menswear, active wear, cosmetics and lifestyle, as well as industrial and graphic design.

Portal speaks to a point of joining, a transitional moment where we look back to the past as well as forward toward what’s to come. Fusing wisdom and the legacy of experience with curiosity and the gift of youth, as we move through the portal we become a part of another view, forming a path that leads to another world and a fresh new perspective.

Similarly, the colors on our wheel for Spring/Summer 2014 are all interconnected. As we travel through the portal we see the use of strong color continuing, becoming more grown-up, mellow and sophisticated in its level of thinking.

“Color has the power to stimulate consumer emotions and influence purchasing decisions. As today’s consumer becomes increasingly color savvy, it is critical that color remains a pivotal part of any design strategy,” said Laurie Pressman, vice president of the Pantone Color Institute. “The PANTONE VIEW Colour Planner forecast not only provides fresh and unexpected color combinations needed to capture the attention of the consumer, but also the context, material and product direction for how the colors can be used.”

PANTONE VIEW Colour Planner Spring/Summer 2014 contains the following seven palettes:

Natural Dimension
The Natural Dimension colors blend fossilized beiges, including bone sand, concentrated smoke grays, metallic lime and frozen ether – the colors of ruins that tell us stories from the past.

Passage
Passage highlights blue, a color most appreciated through personal perception: Blues of innocence, sadness and hope, and blues of the sky, the infinite, the everything and the nothing.

Both Sides Now
Both Sides Now draws on the past to paint a modern future with a palette immersed in rich sepia tones, antique white, lamp black and yellow ochre, blended to obscure and reveal hidden layers.

Turned on its Head
Turned on its Head reflects the passion for fantasy and augmented realities, revealing vivid pink, red and orange color exchanges to create fabulous and sometimes unsettling color blends.

Flux
Flux celebrates nature’s springtime colors – blossom pinks burst forth into sky blues and lush, sappy greens with buttercup yellow casting a vivid sunbeam over this kinetic family of floral inspired pastels.

Trip Time
Trip Time is a combination of bright and intense colors inspired by moments of growth in nature and the energy exchange between light, water and heat.

Harmonic Oscillation
Harmonic Oscillation is a mosaic drawn from nature where dark blue is over-dyed with green lichen, teamed to lagoon greens, scaled to sand, as well as a hint of gray taken from the morning sky.

Portal shows a continued interest in bold colors; however, the overall feeling has evolved to be more mature and refined:

  • Bright colors remain a talking point, but the use of brights is more modulated, less obvious and more harmonious than in the last two seasons.
  • Pastels are split into two directions: A shaded grown-up version and a stronger, floral-scented palette, which works as a frame for brights and neutrals.
  • Grays serve as skeletal bones, used across the palettes and fleshed out by other colors.
  • Neutrals become colored in feeling rather than being just natural and ecru-based.
  • Blue continues to suit everyone – inspired by a crystal tone to beautify, lift and energize the season.
  • Metallics help lift the less colorful palettes with their reflective and light-carrying properties.
  • Black has an important role as a background color for other palettes, and whites should be enjoyed naturally.
  • Pink gains importance this season as an emotional and complex color with an extensive range of tonal possibilities for both men and women.

Published bi-annually, 18 to 24 months in advance of the season, the PANTONE VIEW Colour Planner is based on the PANTONE FASHION + HOME Color System, the most widely used and recognized color standard in the world. The book is produced by a team of leading visionaries from all over the world with expertise in different disciplines, providing a comprehensive color-forecasting service for multiple design areas.

Within each of the season’s directional color palettes, a general introduction outlines the colors included and the philosophy behind them. In addition, a specific breakdown of each palette highlights harmonies, suggested color combinations and suitable patterns, fabrics and products according to end use. For added convenience and usability, at the end of each palette section, a printed version of each PANTONE FASHION + HOME Color is featured in perforated chip form and 1” x 4” detachable cotton strips. The PANTONE VIEW Colour Planner Spring/Summer 2014 also comes with a comprehensive color card highlighting the entire seasonal forecast in cotton swatch format, a DVD containing static images of photos used to illustrate the seasonal themes along with a movie version that has music to set the unique mood of each individual palette, and a poster-sized overview of the season.

Pricing and Availability
The PANTONE VIEW Colour Planner Spring/Summer 2014 is available immediately for $750 from Pantone at www.pantone.com/vcpss2014 or from PANTONE distributors nationwide. Visit http://www.pantone.com or call (888) PANTONE for a list of distributors. PANTONE VIEW Colour Planner is published bi-annually by Metropolitan Publishing BV.

About Pantone
Pantone LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of X-Rite, Incorporated, has been the world’s color authority for nearly 50 years, providing design professionals with products and services for the colorful exploration and expression of creativity. Always a source for color inspiration, Pantone also offers paint and designer-inspired products and services for consumers. More information is available at http://www.pantone.com. For the latest news, trends, information and conversations, connect with Pantone on Twitter and Facebook.

About X-Rite
X-Rite, Incorporated, is the global leader in color science and technology. The company, which now includes color industry leader Pantone, develops, manufactures, markets and supports innovative color solutions through measurement systems, software, color standards and services. X-Rite’s expertise in inspiring, selecting, measuring, formulating, communicating and matching color helps users get color right the first time and every time, which translates to better quality and reduced costs. X-Rite serves a range of industries, including printing, packaging, photography, graphic design, video, automotive, paints, plastics, textiles, dental and medical. For further information, please visit http://www.xrite.com.

PANTONE®…The color of ideasSM.

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PANTONE® and other Pantone trademarks are the property of Pantone LLC. © 2012. All rights reserved.

http://in.pantone.com/pages/pantone/pantone.aspx?pg=21048&ca=10

A trend that will last for a long time….

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During the tragic court case of Trevon Martin and the sad circumstances in Florida surrounding his passing… One of the witnesses was asked to read a sheet of paper. She looked down at it, and looked back at the attorney, and quietly said that she can not read cursive.

Let me repeat that: CAN NOT READ CURSIVE.

I talked about this once before, about script…and cursive..

Script is beautiful. It is tied into my favorite design area of Hand Lettering. It is very popular. Script refers to calligraphy, cursive and any writing that has the letters connecting. It is beautiful, when done right (and sometimes even when done wrong). In the art of Hand Lettering, sometimes a combination of print and script are used together.

I found it sad that this is becoming the norm. It is becoming the “norm” to type and print. Cursive and script are on the way out. Oh, maybe not as soon as some of us fear, but it is going to disappear from the everyday.

Where does that leave us, as designers??? Well, I should say…Where does that leave us designers that like to use script and cursive in our designs? If more than half of the younger population can not read what is being put out in the world what is the use of using that medium? We would be alienating ourselves, limiting ourselves and our consumer base by using this type of type.

We need to make a conscious choice of what we are going to do. Do we push for this to continue to be something that people should learn? Do we accept things for what they are becoming and adjust? Do we, one day, sit with our grandchildren and teach them the “old” ways in hopes that they will also see the beauty in the looping letters?

This is something we all should be thinking about, because it can and will be affecting us all.

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My children have all been taught to write and read cursive. I have an autistic (high functioning) who can not grasp it, and will panic when asked for his signature. I have a 12 year old boy who switches back and forth and sometime says he would rather print. I also have a 12 year old daughter who’s cursive is gorgeous. Amazing. I have very nice cursive, but it is a hybrid of both print and cursive. My husband HATES how he writes in cursive, and not unlike my oldest child who cringes when asked to sign things, my husband always remarks how he hates his signature (he is left handed, too, if that matters)…So, yes, this even affects my own house hold…

Paper cuts..trend 2013?

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Paper cuts or paper cutting, as a trend for graphic design? Maybe. What a neat way to combine an art with, well…another art! Paper cut is when images or words or the combination is used to make a scene. The above image was a bit breath taking to me, so I was happy to use it as an example. But there is an art to paper cutting. And have any of us seen it in graphic design? That is a good question.

I personally have NOT seen it in any graphic design in the commercial public, personally, that I can remember. If you look at the different examples out and about in the world of this art form as I have been doing, I am wondering why it isn’t being utilized more? It’s creative, beautiful, unique. Images have a REAL 3-D look to them, not a computer generated 3-D look. If you have a chance, find or search for paper cut fish. They leap off the page. Or look at paper cut and silhouettes. There is a movement to these scenes that are created that can not be captured in another medium.

I am personally surprised that we, as in us graphic designers and artists, aren’t exploring this medium more, and bringing it to the mainstream. Please, don’t tell me man hours. Because while some of these art pieces definitely take time (well, they all take time, just some more than others) there is a real opportunity being overlooked here.

White paper is used to give things a clean, pure look. The cuts from the scissors and utility knives give motion to these pieces. While using color paper brings and energy and vibe to the artwork that is unlike any other medium. The trick would be to make sure the pieces don’t look like they need to be in the scrapbooking area, nor like paper doll cut outs.

The person or designer that is lucky enough to think outside of the box and bring these to the mainstream will have a hit. Guaranteed.