Tag Archives: inspiration

Inspiration 03.05.2011 – It’s a man’s world

I found a treasure trove of these old Argosy men’s magazines while doing some non-Google related research for a project. I bought a stack of them for the low price of $10 dollars. Once home I pored over the vintage gun and cigarette ads alongside stories of dangerous excursions to exotic lands. Flipping through the pages, you can almost smell the faint aroma of Lucky Strikes and Scotch Whiskey. Man, how things have changed since this publication represented the prevailing male demographic. While they may be sorely politically incorrect, these magazines are a charming window into a time when men subsisted on Seagrams, cigarettes and red meat. Everyone drove an American car and went hunting or fishing on the weekends.

If anything, these magazines paint a picture of the world of our grandfathers: men of a very different world than the one we inhabit today.

Things that inspire me – 02.13.2011

And just like that, another week has flown by. Here’s the latest bit of weekly inspiration. I’ve been looking to sources other than graphic design for ideas. I’m drawn to the textures found in handcrafted furniture, menswear design and mountainous environments. While curating this weeks inspiration post, I found underlying current of design that’s built to withstand wear and tear, but still manages to be aesthetically pleasing. I’ll call it rugged elegance. It’s something I definitely strive for in my design work.

Image 1:
Infinity Tentacle by Andrew Strauss
The Kith Café via The Contemporist
Folding sunglasses by Persol
Breuckelen Distilling Gin Packaging
Mountain Hut via TheFoxisBlack

Image 2:
Wooden Chandelier by Jason & Lars Dressler
Hobo leather accessories via Hypebeast
Visvim S/S 2011 Collection via Hypebeast

Image 3:
Reclaimed wood couch by North on Sixty
Skull Drawing by Iain MacArthur

Image 4:
Olsson & Jensen lamp via The Remodelista
Headdress drawing by Mike Giant
Barbour Jacket via The Sartorialist
Bespoke leather belt by Draught Dry Goods
Joe Strummer via The Selvedge Yard

Image 5:
Bedouin Warrior via Them Thangs
Uniform Wares Watch at Need Supply Co.
Fuck Haters tee by OMFG Co.

Things that inspire me – 01.31.2011

Like I said last week, I’m starting to use the mood-board format more and more to collect inspirational imagery. This week’s theme is somewhere along the lines of “contemporary gothic man-cave.” I am inspired by memories of my late grandfather’s den, which was filled with guns, marksmanship medals and taxidermy. With the collection below, I’m working to convey a contemporary take on the mid-century palace of masculine relaxation. Since I fully believe in giving credit where credit is due, I’ve provided the image sources when possible at the bottom of the post.

Sources –

Image 1:
Sperry ‘Cloud’ Collection
BiJulesNYC Identity by Dust La Rock
Non Native ‘The Bluffer’s Code’ Collection
Tricker’s Brogue Boots

Image 2:
Rings available at OakNYC
Stamps from my great grandfather’s collection
The Glenlivet Scotch – available at your corner liquor store
Vans x A.P.C. Capsule Collection
Modern interiors via Plastolux.com
Old workwear buttons via Mister Mort

Image 3:
Illustrations by Matt Taylor
Typograpy by Herbert Lubalin
Tiffany & Co. Identity by Louise Fili Ltd.
Sculptures by Hiroyuki Hamada
Vintage man caves on The Selvedge Yard

Work I Like: Amy Bennett

To drastically oversimplify things, when I’m cruising the magazines and blogs for inspiration, things usually appeal to me for one of two reasons. The first being work created with a technique and style akin to my own. This kind of work allows me to gain some insight into a fellow draftsman or designers process. I try to glean some ideas I can work into my own approach. This could be called work of a common vernacular. Creatives that fall into this category of mine include: Yuko Shimizu, Paul Pope and Michael Perry. The second category encompasses work that is so beyond my own abilities and understanding that I simply have to tip my hat and admire it, free from deconstruction (at least concerning technique). Amy Bennett resides solidly in this latter category.

An oil painter who received her MFA from the New York Academy of Art, Bennett creates narrative landscape paintings with quite a peculiar vantage point. Browsing her portfolio I tried to grasp how exactly she achieves her unique light and perspective. Her compositions feel as though they’re referenced from a tilt shifted photograph, shot from a low flying helicopter. A read through her ‘About’ section reveals her process. Bennett creates a diorama around which she creates a series of paintings.  The paintings put you in the position of an all seeing voyeur. Scenes of celebration, domestic dispute, grieving and innocence unfold through the seasons in this small neighborhood. Her process must take a very long time, but the results show in spades through each piece. I’m in awe of her dedication and unique approach to a very traditional form of painting.

Soak up the inspiration…

It’s been a beautiful week here in Portland. Things have been moving along rather nicely. I’ve been making a conscious effort to relax and soak up some sun while it’s here. Oregon winters are long and wet. It’s easy to forget that the sun even exists at all when you’ve been soaked with rain for weeks at a time. Northwest Summers, on the other hand, are a slice of paradise. These are the months when inspiration comes easily. It’s important to write down the ideas that strike while sitting out in the sun. Record them for use during the long months when you’re stuck inside. I’ve got a lot of ideas bubbling just under the surface. I’m planning out the next phase of my creative endeavors. For now, I’m not going to stress. Summer is the time to spend outside, with friends, soaking up inspiration.