Archive for February 2010

Lou Dorfsman's wall of type

25 February 2010


This is one of my favorite pieces of 20th century graphic design. I am currently doing a project on a similar theme: Materiality in Graphic Design. I'm glad the Gastrotypographicassemblage is being restored.

Published on February 25, 2010 at 9:42 pm | | 0 Comments

about sustainability

25 February 2010


While discussing the topic of sustainability in design in class this morning it occurred to me that the Bible actually has much to say about sustainability. The "subdue the earth" clause in Genesis 1:28 seems to include an aspect of stewardship; Adam and Eve's original task was to husband the Garden of Eden, clearly a conservation role. And, while I have not studied it yet, I can see some element of sustainability in the Mosaic law. The plan of Redemption is definitely a case of sustainability.

Just a few of the day's significant thoughts.

Published on February 25, 2010 at 9:37 pm | | 0 Comments

definitions: a rant

10 February 2010

So what does the word "print" mean to you?

I am in this course at the Savannah College of Art and Design called "Print Studio II." In this course we spent the first week discussing the apocalyptic-sounding topic, "the end of print" famously postulated by David Carson and others (see previous entry). This discussion pretty much revolved around the contrast of "electronic media" (read websites) and "print" (defined mostly as books, magazines, newspapers, and interestingly, packaging . . . which can't really be satisfactorily addressed by electronic media).

Now, five weeks into the course, a few of the students have been proposing topics and projects that are really environmental graphics by definition. However, the professor applauds their "out of the box" thinking and now says that we should think "beyond traditional print."

I don't get it. "Print" means printing, right? Ink or toner or something in some plastic state gets put onto some substrate like paper, or plastic, or cloth, or metal, or whatever. It's generally accepted to be a process of multiple reproductions and has been for more than 400 years. So why now can it mean all sorts of things?

According to this definition, Maya Lin's Vietnam War Memorial, consisting of yards and yards of black marble with soldier's names carved into it, is "print," even though the names are carved into the marble, not printed.

I just don't understand why the dictionary definition of something isn't satisfactory anymore.

Published on February 10, 2010 at 10:06 pm | | 0 Comments