Et Cetera

A Blog

  1. Animal Twist Icons

    Having worked on several Danish clients and projects over the last few years, each experience has consistently reminded me of the Scandinavian preference for simplicity. It surprises me every time and if pressed to describe the process on my work it would be something like this – step one: design something as stripped down as possible, step two: strip it down 50% more. Then you have probably achieved Danish minimalism.

    To keep this skill sharp, I decided to practice it on a series of animal icons that (for the most part) employ just lines and twists with a slight shadow to emphasize the two elements. I’m sure it’s still 25% “over the top” if you asked a Dane-off-the-street, but I quite like the effect.

    Here are 4 icons each for water, land, air, and small things from the animal world.

    animal-twist-icons-1

  2. This Happened

    nova

    Welcome my daughter, Nova, born May 3rd 2014. Calligraphy by my friend Christa. Expect that Bureau will be less regular in blog activity for a bit as the new project for the moment is motherhood.

  3. Pair of Owls

    Every once in a while I challenge myself to a handmade project. This time it was a pair of owls based on some earlier drawings and inspired by Sarah Goldschadt’s miniature owls. These owls are the supersize version with the addition of floppy wings that are great for playing peekaboo.

    Who who…

    Who who...

    Click here for Sarah’s mini-owlie tutorial.

  4. Penguin Explains the Universe

    penguin explains the universe

    Penguins are funny little creatures, but like most things nature makes, penguins have some hidden talents. According to the experts, “the light front and dark back coloration of classic penguin plumage is called countershading and it provides superb camouflage from above and below to protect penguins in the water”.

  5. Photos from Danmark (feat. the Nordic Lands), Issue IIIX

    Regal sewer covering design in Oslo, Norway.

    Regal sewer covering design in Oslo, Norway.

    Street art survives the winter in Copenhagen, Denmark.

    Street art survives the winter in Copenhagen, Denmark.

    Bringing visibility to sustainable transportation methods in Malmø, Sweden.

    Bringing visibility to sustainable transportation methods in Malmø, Sweden.

    Painted advertising on a building facade in Malmø, Sweden.

    Painted advertising on a building facade in Malmø, Sweden.

    Time to dust off the morning ride in Copenhagen, Denmark.

    Time to dust off the morning ride in Copenhagen, Denmark.

    Dusk and a windmill in the Mols area of Denmark. Wait, who am I trying to kid? It’s winter in Denmark – this photo was taking practically in the middle of the day!

    Dusk and a windmill in the Mols area of Denmark.
  6. Icebreakers Book Preview

    Here is a book project I have been working on with Kristoffer Fynbo Thorning and Tine Fris, both Danish musicians who also enjoy collaborative group processes. They have combined their interests into a book filled with icebreakers that focus on musicality and movement to help groups get into the groove.

    Icebreakers book cover design.

    Icebreakers book cover design.

    The book is still in progress so at the moment I can only show the cover design and a few illustrations from the exercises in the book. Design-wise, the client wanted a fun and informal look while still feeling professional enough for a variety of groups. An illustration style was developed to clearly show exaggerated body shapes, emphasize movement & sound, as well as maximizing the quantity of illustrations created for a start-up budget.

    Icons for four main categories of icebreaker.

    Icons for four main categories of icebreaker: playfulness, movement, collaboration, and music.

    Illustration for the icebreaker “body jazz”, where participants use different body part movements in conjunction with sounds to create a group song.

    Illustration for the icebreaker "body jazz", where participants use different body parts in time to sounds to create a collaborative song.

    Illustration for the icebreaker “memory”, which involves matching pairs of body shapes, sounds or movements that people perform for the game player.

    Illustration for the icebreaker "memory", which involves matching pairs of body shapes, sounds or movements that people demonstrate.

    Illustration for the icebreaker “zombie”, in which participants use unique sounds to let the ‘zombie character’ hone in on their prey while trying to escape – all with eyes closed.

    Illustration for the icebreaker "zombie", which uses sound for a chosen zombie to hone in on prey.

    On a personal note, I saw Kristoffer, Tine, and their musical group Postyr Project perform a concert in Copenhagen at a local church. The exact opposite of a born again revival, it was an evening of interesting a cappella combined with digital experimentation (imagine a singer waving their hands over an iPad to control a series of sound loops while funky IKEA lights turn on and off in the background depending on what tones are sounded). AND there were snacks and alcohol served afterwards in the vestibule. That’s just how the Danes roll.

    Here is one of my favorite songs from the evening called “My Future Self”. It was performed live pretty much in the same incarnation using four voices and an iPad.

    Check out their website for the Icebreakers book here, where they also have an IndieGoGo campaign in progress for helping fund production, outreach, marketing, and design.