On Design

My logo made manifest.

Over at no/print/clint, I’ve written up an article on my most recent geek-out—my logo printed in 3D!

Read more here.

Over at no/print/clint: This is your brain on digital.

During a recent website presentation, I noted that in a few years, I’m going to start the design with tablets in mind as opposed to the current “start with the idea of a big monitor and adapt from there.” They’re so shiny, so full of information….what happens to our brains with that kind of access? Well, it’s an age old battle between “progress” and “regress” aficionados that is actually helpful for ensuring that as we change, we change for the better.

Read This is your brain on digital at no/print/clint.


Had I been there when the scroll became books, or handmade books became print books, I most likely would have been on the sidelines cheering on the change. Luckily I find myself at another critical junction in history that let’s me not only sit on the sideline but actively participate in the conversation.

That conversation revolves around this point: Print is a dying medium. Digital is the future, and we need to start planning for the problems and thinking creatively about solutions today. 

I’m not going to gloat over that death any more than I gloat over my lack of wisdom teeth. It is simply evolution. Print will die and there’s no stopping it. I also won’t say that it is an entirely beneficial occurrence. Change always comes with pain, and the transfer to the purely digital realm is not without peril.

To that end, I created a blog of my own a while back, noprintclint.com 

The goal of the site is not to hasten the end of print (it will do that naturally), but to aid in the move to towards the digital world. It does this by bluntly listing the problems that come with such a change, some solutions, the new advancements, and how we can keep the best of what the world of print offered.

As a designer, I’ve worked for years in print—I even got my start in it. But I’ve watched it lose nearly every battle to what could be have/had-traditionally-been-a print medium as the decade has passed, as the 21st century got older. I fully expect to continue working in the print medium, but more and more the pieces will direct an audience to digital content until even that is no longer needed. I’d rather be ready than surprised. As fellow blogger John Biggs stated, “Change comes fast to those who least expect it.”

I do expect it, and I prefer it come slowly and thoughtfully rather than quickly and rife with complication.

The promised land of a digital world is at hand, it’s time we get stop resisting and start figuring out how to live in it.

Teamwork, schmeamwork?

If reading Malcolm Gladwell books has taught me anything, it’s that you have to challenge assumptions to move forward. That goes double for the most deeply held among us. That, and having crazy hair won’t prevent people from taking you seriously if you make a cogent enough argument. It’s not easy to sit around questioning everything as he does (he makes a pretty good living doing it). Most of us just go along with the flow because we gotta get stuff done, and we don’t have time to do research and become an outlier. Sometimes, however, a piece of research will come out that will challenge everything if we let it. As everyone knows, it takes a long time for such data to permeate the social infrastructure. Lately, some new evidence has been challenging one of the most deeply held assumptions in the world of business and especially the world of creatives: that being in a team is always better than working in isolation. (more…)

“Steal” This Blog.

I’ve spoken before of the fear some business owners feel when giving away “free” advice through blogs. I said, and still think, that the fear is unfounded. The benefits of sharing your knowledge far outweigh the potential that some nefarious client will steal your intellectual property and no longer pay you for it. Most clients will recognize that they don’t have the expertise to act on your ideas, and the few who try will quickly come crawling back for help. It’s like the critic of modern art who says, “My five-year-old could paint that.” Really? Go for it. (more…)

Judging by the Covers

Practically speaking, the size of something is one of the most critical and foremost concerns for a designer beginning a new project. What one designs for a postage stamp is far different than what one might design for, say, the side of a building. There’s considerations for what looks good at what distances, how long the viewer will be able to look at it or is willing to look at it, and a plethora of other minute concerns that are woven into the fabric at the very outset of the impetus “Here I shall communicate an idea.” (more…)

Won’t You Light Your Candle?

Recently a piece of packaging came to me from Baxter of California. Having not had much experience beyond their facial products, I read with wry amusement this statement that wrapped in large sans-serif text around the box: (more…)

A Time for Reflection

Trends come and go in the world of style, and they are…ahem…reflected in the world of design, sometimes to the point of nauseating. A lot of times these trends are driven by technology—as soon as a new ability is made available, it starts popping up in commercials, billboards, print ads and websites. It is perhaps the fault of technology that while it has given designers greater power and speed, that speed has become expected of us and timelines are now tightened to the point where reaching for that new trend is a more viable option in a pinch than being original. (more…)

Speak Loudly and Carry a Big Blog

In times of economic woe, many businesses are tempted to kill the lights to save on electricity. The inherent peril is that if your business operates in the dark, your customers will not see you or, worse yet, forget about you. (more…)

Type, casted

I once saw a skit called “Font Gang Wars”. In the production, gang members forwent guns in favor of fonts, yelling wicked barbs of Comic Sans! and Lucida Calligraphy! and wielding sharp serifs to wound and maim their adversaries. I do believe I was the only one laughing my ass off. “Yes!” I cried, “That font has been used to death and now it causes death! Brilliant!” (more…)