I don’t know a lot about Smithe, but here’s what I was able to dig up. He’s an Art Director / Graffiti Artist / Dj Producer living in Gent, and I’m pretty sure he’s Spanish Mexican, but don’t hold me to it. He makes these crazy futuristic, surrealist images though which I’m really enjoying. This is some heavy drugs kind of illustrations here (no offense Smithe), like something you’d see from the 70′s. Still, really nice line work and a unique color palette makes his work stand out.
Los Angeles certainly is not seen as a design city. It’s not Portland or New York, where designers and illustrators seem to be emerging from practically every little hideout in the city. Los Angeles is a bit scattered and coming into its own in a lot of areas, one of them actually being design. We’ve spoken to a few design types in the city previously but this week we have a bonafide boutique design studio from Los Angeles: Ludlow Kingsley.
The studio is led by Roxanne Daner and Clark Stiles, two Los Angeles based designers who met six years ago and started working together under the name Ludlow Kingsley (which is the name of their fictitious boss). They’ve been doing really stellar work and are proof of a rising group of designers in Los Angeles that are doing all sorts of fantastic stuff. The problem, as discussed in our conversation with them, is that the Los Angeles design community is still growing and–therefore–is a bit spread out, many designers, illustrators, and like artists unaware of each other’s presence. In any event, it gives us a lot of hope that we will one day rival all the other design cities in the world here in Southern California. Here’s hoping!
Trends come and go, but they’re also good markers of where we’re currently at in the design circle of life. For years now LogoLounge has been creating a trend report surveying what’s going on in the world of logo design, and the 2012 Trend Report is another great look at what’s going on.
As I review logos that are entered onto the LogoLounge site, three distinct categories start to emerge. The first and largest category is replete with trends that already have reached saturation. They may be well-rendered and serve their clients very well. Any would have been excellent candidates for trend reports in past years, but they just don’t move our field forward.
Leaders in the “done to death” category for this year include designs that include birds, dinosaurs, monsters, people as trees, transparent flip books (actually, flipping or stacked see-through pages of any kind), transparent lotus blossoms, fruit, and X’s (this final tribe where two crossed arrows or lines have words or icons in each of the four quadrants is so overdone that designers themselves have begun to parody it).
Another category is on the opposite side of the universe. Here, you might see two and maybe three logos that indicate a brewing trend with promise. But there’s no critical mass here yet, and certainly no guarantees that these will eventually grow into something bigger.
My favorite trends personally are icon clusters, anaglyphs and tesselation. Basically all the ones with multiple, bright colors. Do you find yourself falling into any of these categories?
It’s always nice to come across a room labeled “canteen” on a floorplan, and that’s the case with this project: the Kantana Institute in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand. Designed by the Bangkok Project Company Limited, the project uses brick as an exterior finish in a pretty clever way. The brick lines two exterior corridors that cut across the plan perpendicular to each other, and the same brick wraps around the exterior of the building, acting as if it were both pleated and monolithic. These exterior circulation lined with brick have punched out windows, often seeming more interior than exterior. These are spaces intended to give students at the Institute a place to contemplate, even if all they can ponder is how these brick walls are constructed. The student could just look at a section drawing of the project, but where’s the fun in that?