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I Heart My New Embosser

I just received my first embosser and I'm wondering why I've never had one before! This really classes everything up. Mine says "sarahheartsdesign" and I'm using it on cards I'm making. I ordered through the Paper Source (I heart them). Now that I have the embosser, if I want another design all I have to do is order the plate. I can't decide if I should get one with my initials or one with my address, or maybe both!

Frank Furness: Train Station Architect

I was taking the train from NYC last month (so relaxing) and reading Amtrak's magazine when a short little blurb on architect Frank Furness grabbed my attention. With the article was a picture of this pretty station in Wilmington, Delaware:
The station was completed in 1908 and was part of a major upgrade by the Pennsylvania Railroad Company. This year the Friends of Furness are celebrating the station's 100th anniversary. The original 1908 renovation included raised tracks to eliminate dangerous foot and pedestrian crossings (good idea). The design had to support the weight of the tracks and trains above the concourse level and to do this Furness built a grid of steel columns and truss work that was left exposed. I wish I could find pictures of the interior, guess I'll just have to pass through someday. I love train stations, the hustle and bustle and romantic idea of travel that doesn't include a pat down or security check.

I tried to find out more about Furness and his work on different train stations but have come up a little empty handed. Via that A1 source of information
Wikipedia, I found the following: "During his career, Furness designed over four hundred buildings including banks, churches, synagogues, railway stations for the Pennsylvania and Baltimore & Ohio railroads, and numerous stone mansions in Philadelphia and along Philadelphia's Main Line, as well as a handful of commissioned houses at the New Jersey seashore, Washington, D.C., New York state, and Chicago, Illinois." I did also find out that there is a biography about Furness and a collection of his works that I'll have to add to my reading list. Until then, happy and relaxing travels to you.

Logan Airport Terminal C

I'm on an airline kick this week. In Terminal C of Logan Airport in Boston there is a wall of mirrors that is very fun to watch people walk by. It's on the top floor, departures, by the Legal Seafood. If you're passing through, walk by to check it out.

American Airlines Logo: Heart It!

I really have a new appreciation for American Airlines' identity with all the flying I've been doing. It started back in February at Logan Airport with the photo above. And continued at LAX when I saw a hangar for AA with this eagle:
Vignelli Associates designed the AA eagle logo in 1967 and according to Wikipedia:

"American's early liveries varied widely, but a common livery was adopted in the 1930s, featuring an eagle painted on the fuselage. The eagle became a symbol of the company and inspired the name of American Eagle Airlines. Propeller aircraft featured an international orange lightning bolt running down the length of the fuselage, which was replaced by a simpler orange stripe with the introduction of jets.
In the late 1960s, American commissioned an industrial designer to develop a new livery. The original design called for a red, white, and blue stripe on the fuselage, and a simple "AA" logo, without an eagle, on the tail. However, American's employees revolted when the livery was made public, and launched a "Save the Eagle" campaign similar to the "Save the Flying Red Horse" campaign at Mobil. Eventually, the designer caved in and created a highly stylized eagle, which remains the company's logo to this day. In 1999, American painted a new Boeing 757 in its 1959 international orange livery. There is a Boeing 737-800 painted in the retro AstroJet livery.American is the only major U.S. airline that leaves the majority of its aircraft surfaces unpainted. This was because C. R. Smith hated painted aircraft, and refused to use any liveries that involved painting the entire plane. Robert "Bob" Crandall later justified the distinctive natural metal finish by noting that less paint reduced the aircraft's weight, thus saving on fuel costs. Eastern Air Lines and US Airways have also maintained unpainted airplanes in the past."I'm a fan of the silver jets (Hi, have we met? I love silver, sparkly things). If you're a fan of AA check out this site for apparel!

The Letter S Part Three

One of my new hobbies has become finding the letter S in unexpected places and I've done it again! This S is from some detail around a window on an old apartment building. I love the flow and the background detail that looks a little like leaves to me.

Morning's First Cup Packaging

I'm not a big tea drinker but the packaging of Morning's First Cup makes me want to start. I spotted this in a specialty shop in New York and have not seen it since. It's hard to find online but I did find this link that sells it. I love the simple box, colors, and silhouette used. On top of all that, each tea bag tag has sayings like "With each sunrise, we start anew," and "I'd like mornings better if they started later." Cute!

Poster Art By Rick Doubleday

Today I thought I'd feature some work by a fellow runner and my professor, Rick Doubleday. Rick was kind enough to share some if his recent poster designs with me. They include a poster commemorating the Sichuan earthquake, a talk he gave in Germany, an upcoming exhibition in Guatemala and an upcoming lecture in Japan. I really love the color choice and layering in the pieces. I especially enjoy the Tama Art poster's use of different patterns.

Rick's website: "Richard B. Doubleday design is the synthesis of form and content and their interrelationships. My work relies on the knowledge of visual sensitivity, personal vision, intellect and typographic principles to assess each problem and answer with an appropriate solution."

From August 18-29 there will be an exhibition of Rick's work at the Universidad Rafael Landívar, Guatemala, for the 35th Anniversary of the foundation of Architecture and Design Faculty. The poster commemorating the recent Sichuan earthquake in China will appear in two publications and an exhibition, which will coincide with the opening of the Beijing Olympic Games (have you heard
I'm obsessed with the Olympics?). Please see his piece in Baseline Magazine number 53, "The Graphic Language of Min Wang: Beijing Olympic Games Graphic Identity and Pictograms."

This fall look for Rick's contribution to the book
Jan Tschichold- Master Typographer. I for one am looking forward to the fall when I'll be working with Rick more closely on my graduate thesis project.

Wordle Equals Excitingle

I came across
Wordle a couple weeks ago via How About Orange. Later that week I opened the Sunday Boston Globe and saw an article that used the site to compare John McCain and Barack Obama's blogs (turns out the word used the most on McCain's blog is Obama...interesting). Now, I think that you should hear about it.

their site: "Wordle is a toy for generating “word clouds” from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text. You can tweak your clouds with different fonts, layouts, and color schemes. The images you create with Wordle are yours to use however you like. You can print them out, or save them to the Wordle gallery to share with your friends."

For fans of typography, that would be me, this IS a toy! I plugged in the address for my blog and my del.icio.us site then just kept hitting randomize. Fun, fun, fun. It's neat to do this as the main page on my blog changes. When I first started playing around the prominent words had to do with my posts on murals in Brookline.

I didn't realize that on my delicio.us I saved a LOT about Boulder and weddings...I guess from that you can tell what I've been look up the most! Mostly I like this because it takes data and visualizes it. See my post on
Visual Complexity for more on infographics.

The Roses Smell Sweet For...

Finally, after months of waiting we have a winner! Lord and Taylor has finally announced the winner of their first annual Everything's Coming Up Roses Contest. Drumroll please, after thousands and thousands votes were cast and counted the winner of the contest is Evelyn of Houston, Texas:

From the Lord & Taylor site: "Evelyn's evocative photo captures, in a single image, the decades-old beauty of the Lord & Taylor rose. We couldn't be more pleased to use her wonderful work next spring in our 2009 Rose Campaign."

In addition to having her work used by Lord & Taylor next year, Evelyn won $10,000. I think I better get cracking on this for next year. It's a great opportunity for artists everywhere to get some exposure. This wasn't one of my favorites, but I like that it's not a traditional red color. I think it looks very similar to what Lord & Taylor used this year for their rose campaign. I guess it's best to go with what works. To read my past blogs on this click
here and here. Congratulations to Evelyn!

WWI Posters At The Boston Public Library

If you're in Boston this weekend, hop on the T to the Boston Public Library at Copley Square to check out their newest exhibit: 'American Posters of the First World War.' The exhibit runs through through September 4 in the Wiggin Gallery. The collection features more than 50 American World War I posters from the BPL Print Department including posters of recruitment, patriotism, war bond promotions, the home front, and war relief organizations.

If you're a regular reader you know I'm a sucker for classic poster art. While there check out the
Map Room Cafe, a great place to relax and have a snack. And if you don't get your fill of posters, head over to the International Poster Gallery a few blocks away on Newbury Street. Have a great weekend!

Olympic Fever: Catch It

Have you heard? The Olympics start today. "Citius, Altius, Fortius", meaning faster, higher, stronger (the Olympic motto) is what I'm going to be keeping in mind.

So much has been said about these Games in Beijing but when it gets down to it, I just want to see as many events as I can. I love it all. ALL. If you were around me for the last games in Torino, you know. Essential in watching: Tivo. This great little device makes it easy to tape and watch events that end up being broadcast at 3am. This year I'll also be able to watch streaming coverage online: YAY!

I haven't written about the Olympic yet because it's something I'm so nuts about, it's like opening a can of worms, I wouldn't stop and I would just keep going and going and going then this would be a blog all about Olympics. Not that that would be bad, I've just got some other projects I should really be doing.

So, what to tune in to? Of course track and field (or more properly, athletics), especially the marathons since I saw both the men's and women's trials, swimming and gymnastics. How can you resist those outfits? It's the figure skating of the summer games. How about badmiton, canoeing, handball and fencing? Bring it on. I'm also excited for the heptathlon for women and the decathlon for men, I love these events because the athletes are Jacks and Jills of all trades. Oh and the steeplechase. Who am I kidding? I'm already on sensory overload because I love it all.

The net is flooded with information on the games. I've been following The NY Times blog, Rings, the main Olympic site and the official site for the Beijing Games. The Times' site is great because it covers the games from all angles.

One funny link I came across was Games of the Past, on that list: Tug-of-war. From the site: "Tug-of-war was on the Olympic programme in 1900, 1904, 1906 (Intercalated Games), 1908, 1912 and 1920. Tug-of-war was always contested as a part of the track and field athletics programme, although it is now considered a separate sport." Seriously? This is great stuff.

I love it. I just love it all. The logos, the hype, the architecture, the stories. I'm a sucker for a good story. So, if you want to know what I'm up to August 8-24: it's following the Olympics. USA! USA! USA!

Classic Summer Reads With New Fun Covers

While browsing about
Brookline Booksmith I spotted a great group of summer reads with fun covers. The books, put out by Puffin Classics, use a simple color palette and whimsical illustrations for each book. I love how the cover format for the books are all the same but each book uses different colors, type and drawing. It made me want to pick up some of these classics and reread them!