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Archives: July 2014

Favorite Thing: Dyson’s New Bladeless Fan

dyson fanIt was only a few years ago that James Dyson and his crack team of engineers (all of whom we like to imagine wearing jaunty striped shirts as they labor to incrementally yet significantly improve upon previously undesirable household appliances) debuted the Air Multiplier, a bladeless wonder that did for blowing what Dyson’s streamlined vaccuums did for sucking. A new range of the distinctively shaped fans is here, and it’s even cooler—literally.

Dubbed “Dyson Cool,” the new fans are up to 75% quieter than their predecessors, a fact that has not escaped the watchful ears of those at the delightfully named Noise Abatement Society, which has—with no bells and whistles—awarded its Quiet Mark to the new Air Multiplier technology. Dyson engineers managed to hush the fan by reducing the turbulence of high-velocity air, cancelling out specific tones: notably those buzzy ones at 1,000Hz, which are similar to the frequency of the noise produced by the incessant wing beats of mosquitoes. This feat was achieved in part by the addition of something called a “Helmholtz cavity,” which we like to imagine was also the name of a young Dyson’s garage band. The price for all of this innovation? Dyson estimates the R&D costs at $65 million. The desktop AM06 model will set you back $299.99, but you’ll be all the cooler for it.

Have a suggestion for our next Favorite Thing? E-mail unbeige@mediabistro.com.

Mediabistro Course

Create Your Own Website Using WordPress

Create Your Own Website Using WordPressStarting September 22, learn how to build a WordPress site with themes, plugins, and basic coding! Through lectures, assignments, and interactive online discussions, students will learn how to use the platform to publish pages, articles, and multimedia content, improve site navigation, and connect with the WordPress community. Register now!

Design Nerd? There’s an App for That!

DESIGNerd

When’s the last time you heard Alex Trebek call out categories such as SERIFS, TWENTIETH-CENTURY LOGOTYPES, or SAGMEISTER CLASS? We bet our cache of potent potables that it’s never. Enter Kevin Finn. The Australian, who we last encountered in his capacities as editor and publisher of Open Manifesto, has created DESIGNerd 100*, a design trivia app that tests your knowledge of typography, publishing, advertising, branding, contemporary design studios, packaging, motion graphics, and more. And in building out the first volumes, Finn went straight to the experts, tapping Stefan Sagmeister, Steven Heller, and Lita Talarico to contribute their personal questions (100 each).

“I’m a self-confessed design nerd, passionate about all forms of design,” says Finn. “I simply wanted to share design knowledge with other design enthusiasts, but in a fun and engaging way.” Among the well-designed twists of the app, available through the iTunes App Store (an Android version is in progress), are the bonus facts studded throughout the game. (Did you know that Jonathan Barnbrook’s Mason typeface, was originally called Manson—after the serial killer Charles Manson and in a nod to the extreme opposites the typeface was intended to express? Emigre Fonts dropped the “n” after complaints started to pour in.) “New volumes to add to the series are underway,” promises Finn, “as are plans to launch the trivia game as a standalone app that will house all volumes in the series.”

Katz Marks the Spot: New Art Billboard to Welcome Whitney Downtown

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Alex Katz’s 2012 painting Katherine and Elizabeth (Photo courtesy Gavin Brown’s Enterprise)

Worried that the spindly and shape-shifting “W” of the Whitney Museum’s fledgling graphic identity will be insufficient to guide visitors to the door of its new downtown home? Alex Katz to the rescue. The artist (and erstwhile J. Crew model)’s 2012 canvas, Katherine and Elizabeth, will welcome the museum to the Meatpacking District in the form of a 17-by-29-foot billboard on the facade of 95 Horatio Street, located directly across Gansevoort Street from the southern end of the High Line and the Renzo Piano-designed Whitney. Announced today, the public art installation will be the first in a planned five-year series organized in collaboration with real estate developer TF Cornerstone and High Line Art.

Design Jobs: Princeton University, Atlantic Media, California Academy of Sciences

This week, Princeton University is hiring a visual design strategist, while Atlantic Media is seeking a design director for the National Journal. California Academy of Sciences needs an interaction designer, and the NYC Department of Transportation is on the hunt for a graphic artist. Get the scoop on these openings and more below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro.

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Find more great design jobs on the UnBeige job board. Looking to hire? Tap into our network of talented UnBeige pros and post a risk-free job listing. For real-time openings and employment news, follow @MBJobPost.

Quote of Note | Mitch Epstein

(Mitch Epstein)“I used to make pictures without thinking about how they would relate to one another as a series. When I went to Vietnam in the early ’90s to collaborate with a Vietnamese dissident writer, a novelist, I started to conceive of my individual pictures as part of a greater whole, as projects. I began to conceive of these projects as photographed from the inside out, not the other way around. In other words, I let go of the conventions of supposedly neutral ‘street photography’ and began to find ways to insert and invest myself into a situation and yet still remain somewhat detached. Family Business is an example where I photographed something I knew intimately and cared about deeply, but did so with emotional restraint. I’d absorbed my lessons from strict documentarians, which allowed me to make something personal without sentimentalizing it.” —Photographer Mitch Epstein

Pictured: Mitch Epstein, Flag (2000), from Family Business, a film and photographic project about Epstein’s father and the demise of the family furniture store.

Oh, Canada! Edward Burtynsky, Fred Herzog Among Photographers Honored with Stamps

herzog stamp

stampsCanada knows how to have fun with stamps, eh? Current postage options in the Great White North include a set of spooky stamps devoted to “haunted Canada” (featuring beloved phantoms such as Alberta’s Ghost Bride and the burning ship that is often spotted in Prince Edward Island’s Northumberland Strait), pop-country songstress Shania Twain, and Superman, but our favorites are the new set celebrating Canadian photography.

Designed by Stéphane Huot, the stamps—five domestic-rate stamps, one U.S. denomination, and one international stamp—feature Fred Herzog’s Bogner’s Grocery (1960, pictured above), Lynne Cohen’s Untitled (1970), Michel Lambeth’s St. Joseph’s Convent School (1960), C.D. Hoy’s Unidentified Chinese man (circa 1912) and Louis-Prudent Vallée’s Quebec City in Winter (1894). William Notman’s Sitting Bull and Buffalo Bill (1885) graces the U.S. denomination while Edward Burtynsky’s Railcuts #1, shot at Skihist Provincial Park in British Columbia in 1985, appears on the international stamp. And for philatelists, the Canadian photographic fun doesn’t end there: the Canadian photography series is set to continue for three more years. Sorry, Superman!

Wanted: Designer Who May Already Have Won Ten Million Dollars!

While we can’t guarantee it will make you any more likely to receive an early morning visit from the Prize Patrol (and in all likelihood employees are ineligible for company sweepstakes), we did want to alert you to the fact that Publishers Clearing House, they of the plentiful pay-by-installment magazine subscriptions and cash prize promises, is looking for a senior web designer-slash-art director to join its Port Washington, New York office. The winning candidates’ responsibilities will include planning, designing, coding, and executing mobile and web-based material, emails, and interactive experiences (many of them probably depicting giant piles of cash!). And don’t forget to ask in advance to be paid by direct desposit rather than in giant novelty checks.

Learn more about and apply for this Senior Web Designer/Art Director, Publishers Clearing House job or view all the current mediabistro.com design/art/photo jobs.

Friday Photo: Monkey on Board

(Garry Winogrand)In 1959, Bronx-born photographer Garry Winogrand (1928–1984) captured what is surely one of the most wonderfully—and perplexingly—absurd scenes in the history of photography: a snow monkey perched on the rear of a Chevy convertible paused at an intersection on Park Avenue in Manhattan. The man and the woman in the car look over their shoulders to regard the primate with gazes of barely suppressed annoyance, as if poised to answer the are-we-there-yet? whines of a bored child. Meanwhile, the monkey, having spied Winogrand and his trusty Leica, looks straight at the lens with his mouth open.

“One day I asked Winogrand what actually was happening when he made that now-classic photograph,” said Jeff Rosenheim, a former student of Winogrand’s who now serves as curator in charge of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s department of photographs, at the recent press preview for the museum’s exquisite Winogrand retrospective. “He smiled at let rip a common refrain: ‘Forget about the original situation, Jeff. It’s gone. Look at the picture. A photograph is a new thing. An illusion. A lie. A transformation.’ It was important lesson for me to learn then, and even today I revisit its truths as I work to understand this ever-changing nature of this medium of photography.”
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SVA to Honor Tom Geismar with ‘Masters Series’ Retrospective

(Art Beach)It’s a good year to be Tom Geismar. He and partner (and fellow graphic design legend) Ivan Chermayeff are the 2014 recipients of the National Design Award for lifetime achievement, but even before they pick up their chunky glass asterisks at the Cooper Hewitt’s awards gala in October, Geismar will get the retrospective treatment at New York’s School of Visual Arts. A panel of his peers has selected Geismar to be the 2014 SVA Master Series honoree, joining a roster of past laureates that includes Chermayeff, Saul Bass, Steven Heller, Duane Michals, and Paula Scher. In addition to his logo designs for the likes of Mobil, Chase Manhattan Bank, National Geographic, PBS, Rockefeller Center, Univision, NYU, and Xerox, the exhibition will feature personal works, books, and student projects from Geismar’s own collection.

“The Masters Series: Tom Geismar” opens August 25 at the SVA Chelsea Gallery in NYC.

Put the ‘Fun’ in ‘HTML Fundamentals’

Admit it. Your seven-year-old nephew could out-HTML tag you any day and you think that a Cascading Style Sheet is something with a thread count. That’s where the Mediabistro mothership comes in. They’ve asked us to tell you about the upcoming online course in HTML and CSS that kicks off just in time for you to rationalize shopping for new school supplies. Over four fun-filled sessions, web designer (and illustrator) Laura Galbraith will guide you through a variety of web page production techniques, from column-based layouts and search engine optimization to semantic markup and advanced CSS styles. And you’re bound to ace the typography sections. The online learning fun begins September 15. Preview the course syllabus and register here.

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