Mojo
Posted in design,photography by Mark on the April 16th, 2009
mojo images

Been a while since I posted any of my own work, this is an identity I did the other month for the lovely Mancunia based photographer Jo Harter-Tong, of Mojo Images.

Links
Mojo on Flickr

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Humble pie.
Posted in design,random by Mark on the April 16th, 2009

I came across the rather wonderful piece by Adrian Shaughnessy on design paradoxes over on Design Observer. (One of my favourite authors on design, yes sometimes I look at more than the pretty pictures.)

And on reading these 10 (11 actually) points I found myself guilty of one or two of them, I’d blame a few of these hiccups on stress and pressure, and thankfully I’ve never actually used some of these statements on clients, but I’ve more than once made the “doctor’s aren’t questioned, why are designer’s opinions so disrespected?” case amongst friends. Apparently my comparison was out of date, in the day where Google and Wikipedia reign supreme, doctors are indeed challenged every day by people who think they know better. In fact my gran pre-dated the internet with her belief that all doctors know less than her, so it was a bit blinkered of me to really presume no one questions a doctor.

So, humble pie really. I think I came through the list relatively unscathed, and in the areas I didn’t well, shall just have to do better. Tut tut.

Number eleven of the ten points (yes) was lovely to read just because it’s nice to see it confirmed.

11. When a client says the words — “you have complete creative freedom,” they never mean complete creative freedom. Whatever you show them, they will find a problem with. Happens every time.

Links
DO – 10 Design Paradoxes

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SGN 09 Site & Forum style
Posted in design,news,random by Mark on the April 10th, 2009

The lovely geeky blog myself and Rihards have been working on now has matching and fully upgraded forums ! As ever, design and about nine million gazillion icons for vbulletin done by myself, and the arduous task of making it all actually work, was Rihards so a huge thanks to him.

sgncore new design
sgncore new design
sgncore new design
sgncore new design
sgncore new design

Links
sgn – geekery & goodness
sgn – geekery & goodness – forums

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Our Dark Materials
Posted in design,illustration,news by Mark on the March 31st, 2009
our dark materials

Shameless promotion alert – I made these posters to promote my friend Seth’s new book group which focusses on lovely fantasy & sci-fi book nerdery. So if you’re in Mancunia, come along – the next book is Jurassic Park! A timeless classic. Well maybe not, but it’s remained one of my favourites for years.

Plus.

Dinosaurs.

There I said it. It contains dinosaurs. Massive spoiler. Ruined for you really.

So yes, come along have pints, discuss geeky books, and ramble about other things. We tend to go have grub after too, so it’s not just bookery.

Plus. Dinosaurs, I mean, come on.

The next meeting is Wednesday 29th April.

Links
Our Dark Materials

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Manchester’s Art, Music & Fashion Awards: Now open for entries
Posted in design,news by Mark on the February 26th, 2009

I know I said I’d start posting pretty things again soon, but crazily I’ve actually got rather busy. However this was nudged in my direction, and ordinarily I’d have probably skipped it as I tend to assume anything for art snubs graphic design, and vice versa (well actually the latter probably holds true.) but it’s a very broad description, so get submitting stuff :)

Anyhoo, full details below and more on their site:

They’re open. The Best of Manchester Awards are now open for entries, the start of a 10-week campaign to find the artists, musicians and designers whose boundary-breaking work deserves the Best of Manchester crown.

Organised by Urbis, the annual awards celebrate innovation in art, music and fashion. Anyone working within the fields of music, art and fashion, and who lives or works in Greater Manchester, can enter – and stand the chance of having their work judged by a panel of 24 industry experts that includes Peter Saville, Wayne Hemingway, the Turner Prize winning artist, Jeremy Deller, Tim Marlow (White Cube, London), Miranda Sawyer, Yvette Livesey (In The City) and Luke Bainbridge (Observer Music Monthly).

The categories are deliberately broad. The art category, for example, includes graphic and product design, photography and illustration, as well as fine art.

For those working in the creative sector, The Best of Manchester Awards are more than a pat on the back from the industry. They’re about more than the winners & £2,000 cheque and a major exhibition at Urbis. The awards are a chance for the winners to kick-start their career with the kind of contacts and professional development that money can’t buy.

The awards are open for entries until Midnight on 1 May 2009.
Entry is online, at www.urbis.org.uk/thebestofmanchester.

Website:
www.urbis.org.uk

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Geekery & goodness – new site
Posted in design,news,random by Mark on the January 11th, 2009
sgncore new design
sgncore new design

As mentioned briefly in my last post, the new geeky site/blog me and Rihards have been working on is live – hurray! So head over and take a peek, the design is my shenanigans, and all development and coding is done by Rihards.

(The new style still has to be transferred over to the forums however.)

Links
sgn – geekery & goodness

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“…nothing’s more simple than a single giant button…”
Posted in random by Mark on the January 7th, 2009


Apple Introduces Revolutionary New Laptop With No Keyboard

I don’t visit The Onion nearly enough but I loved this :D

“It remains to be seen whether the wheel will catch on in the business world where people use computers for actual work and not just dicking around.”

In other news me and Rihards have been polishing off the finishing touches to a new site which will be something of a sister site to scrapbook, where I’ll be posting geekier items of interest, and less random non-design posts will crop up on scrapbook.

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Two Thousand & Nine
Posted in news,random by Mark on the January 1st, 2009
2009

2008 was actually a great year, it got a bit rubbish the last few months but that doesn’t really counter how amazing the rest was. My freelance work has continued successfully – I got to work with a lot of wonderful people, work on some varied and nice projects, all my worries regarding my apartment have vanished (have now been in over a year!), had a chance to visit Vienna again to see my good friend Rihards. All in all, it was an incredible year where I got to catch up with a lot of friends and realise just how great they are.

So basically this is just a big thank you, to everyone that has been in my life in 2008, for giving me a great year, and for helping me through the last few months when it’s been a little more pear-shaped.

Hopefully 2009 will pick up and become as good a year and maybe better than 2008 was for me :) And I’m aware I’ve not been posting any of my own design work or doodles on scrapbook lately, will change that over the next few months :)

So Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone :)

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“God hates fangs”
Posted in random by Mark on the December 29th, 2008

I’ve been recently completely addicted to a new TV show – True Blood.

Another vampire tv show, you would think the well was pretty dry after so many attempts to keep milking a bloody teet. (Blade films and tv show, Buffy film and tv show, Buffy’s spin off show Angel, Anne Rice’s two film adaptions, oh and countless other films, oh and that teeny stuff Twilight which looks quite cringeworthy)

But no, it’s rather awesome. The premise is a world in which vampires have come out to the world as there’s this synthetic Japanese alternative to human blood named – you guessed it, Tru Blood. (I guess after Tru Calling someone thankfully decided they couldn’t stomach naming another TV show with illiterate word use.) And the show takes place in the deep south of America, and with that loving and caring locale it contrasts all kinds of intolerance, “fangs” themselves, fang-bangers (take a guess), racism, homophobia. And it’s just surprisingly quality. Full of blood, death, sex, substance abuse. It’s all kinds of win.

The intro sequence is rather twisted, reminds me of one of my favourite movies – Natural Born Killers, and I suppose at a push, Se7en’s intro too.

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Free legal instant music? Really?
Posted in news,random by Mark on the December 26th, 2008

I’m not entirely sold on the name (reminds me of a scene from Futurama about the selection of untrademarked names) but Coxy invited me to the rather funky service Spotify. You download the program and it allows you to stream a huge amount of music for free quickly and simply. No piracy, no legal qualms, quite refreshing.

The interface is relatively intuitive, although I find it easy to overlook the fact you need to scroll to see albums when you search for individual artists. And I’ve been enjoying listening to albums I’d always meant to check out but didn’t really want to buy or thieve them.

So, it is quite lovely. The free account is paid for by ads which do appear infrequently between tracks. A minor annoyance but still a mile away from the average advertising tedium of radio. If it bothers you too much you can subscribe for an ad free experience. Sounds good so far, but: it does crash relentlessly on my mac when left to it’s own devices, it’s fine for quite a while but if I leave it on in the background paused it tends to crash, and sometimes when it goes between ads and back to the music.

Hopefully as it develops the builds will get more stable though. Another nice touch is that it already has last.fm scrobbling built in.

And a Happy Christmas to everyone :) I had a spare minute after being overfed on Christmas Day to fix the sIFR (fancy fonts) on scrapbook, and swapped the fonts used too.

Links
Spotify
last.fm

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