Submarine Cable Map

Submarine Cable Map 2013 c

Submarine Cable Map 2013 b

Submarine Cable Map 2013 a

Incredible map of all the cables that run under our oceans to keep data flowing. Published by Telegeography.

You view the full map below. Inspect it’s details. Amazing.

Submarine Cable Map 2013

Lumen type

Lumentype NLumentype HLumentype KLumentype J

Just stumbled across this curious typographic experiment, and found it quite inspiring. It’s a kind of bokeh type effect Ruslan Khasanov. I’ve featured Ruslan’s work in the past. He’s a ceaseless experimenter, and I love what he’s doing.

This bokeh lumen type is really quite fresh, and I’m not sure how he’s accomplished it. There is a clue in one of the images he provides (see below). A lens and light set up. Does he create each circular shape one at a time, then assemble the full letterforms in post. I think not, because seeing them in motion (see below) all the circles in each letter react to changes together… curious…

Lumentype setup

You can see the lumen type in motion here:

Campbell’s Warhol Cans

Life imitates art or maybe it’s the other way around, and in this case, marketing imitates art. Fifty years after Andy Warhol created his now iconic soup can prints, The Campbell’s Soup company has issued special edition cans (via Target stores) that emulate his abstract “interpretations” of their labels. You can read more about Target’s coup here.

Spinning Type

Interesting typographic experiments from Jinhwan Kim involving spinning letterforms. What makes these more interesting is that they are not simply animated on the computer, they are shot through a lens, with a light box, which reveals a chromatic aberration of colours beyond the pure black letterforms themselves. You also get that lovely “wagon wheel effect” as the motor accelerates and decelerates. That can be seen best with the full alphabet below.

I think “J” is my favourite!


38: The new London bus

Like spotting a rare bird, I’d seen the beautiful, new London double decker buses from afar for the past few months. With only a few on the roads (started with 7 in Feb 2011, now up to ?) I would narrowly miss one as it drove off from a bus stop, or chase after another to take a photo. They had eluded me until yesterday – I had my first ride, and I wasn’t disappointed!

Designed by the inspired Heatherwick Studio in London (this post has just had an Olympic update, because Heatherwick also designed the beautiful Olympic flame caldron – see below for a video), its the first time in 50 years that London has commissioned the design of a new bus specifically for the city. The result is a beautiful homage to the curves of the old Route Masters but with a definite future facing ethos. Utterly contemporary in look and feel (asymmetry abound) but also utilizing the latest in hybrid technology (40% more efficient than the current London diesel buses), they are most certainly a confident and intelligent solution, but not without some sentimentality for the heyday of double deckers, the complete combination of which, I find very pleasing.

The interior’s are simple and slightly underwhelming, though what more would they need? Probably nothing. The highlight is the restoration of the hop-on, hop-off, open rear door, like the old Route Masters had,  and with it, a second bus man (again) looking after that rear door. The bars for holding on to disappear into the ceiling in with a pinched profile that I really like. The fabric on the seats is as ugly as ever, though better-designed-ugly ; ) which also feels entirely appropriate. The London underground tube car upholstery has always been “unusual” slash ugly.

The exterior, however, is wonderful. Diagonal windows that follow the stairs upward (or downward), a diagonal slash of red on the front face, revealing a black under-colour, like Robin (Batman’s Robin) lowering his mask to reveal his true identity, and another widening slash of window on the rear leading to the hop-on/off door. Truly beautiful and imaginative, while being completely functional at the same time. More light in the bus, more views of the city, and better visibility for the driver.

We now have at least 3 (maybe 4) generations of double decker buses on the London roads, including the old Route Masters that still have a few token routes. Most of them, regrettably, have been relegated to Wedding transport!

Thomas Heatherwick writes:
“It has been 50 years since a bus was last designed and commissioned specifically for London. This has been a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for a team to look again at the opportunities for a new open-platform bus. It has been an honour to be asked by London’s transport authority to take an integrated approach and design everything that you see and experience from the outside down to the tiniest details of the interior.”

Olympic Update: Heatherwick studio design the incredible Olympic torch caldon. Quite a year for Heatherwick Studio: a retrospective show at the V&A, the new London bus, and now the Olympic caldron. To see it action watch this BBC footage from the Opening Ceremonies below:

Gerry Anderson Stamps

How did I miss these fantastic Gerry Anderson “Supermarionation” stamps when Royal Mail issued them last Autumn and Winter! The series showcased some of his puppet based TV shows from the 1960s: Thunderbirds, Supercar, Fireball XL5, Stingray, Captain Scarlet and Joe 90. Royal Mail also issued a series of Thunderbirds stamps with lenticular effects that animated the Thunderbirds 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 countdown. Super cool.

Here’s a Creative Review article about them:

Playtype Concept Store

Danish type foundry Playtpe has opened a street level type concept store, called, yes, the Playtype Concept Store. Not only do they sell their fonts, but also all kinds of other typographic products.

I can’t wait to visit it next time I’m in Copenhagen.

Here’s a blurb describing the store:
The Playtype™ Concept Store was launched in conjunction with the revamp and redesign of Playtype.com. Located in Copenhagen’s Vesterbro, the store is the physical manifestation of the online shop — and then some. Created as a place to further our typographic practice, the store provides a street level entry to typography — it is a place to share our passion with the general public and a place where our designers can experiment with their craft outside of the studio. Aside from type, the store continuously features new editions, events and products created by e-Types alongside friends and colleagues in the design and art world.

Vintage Souvenir Penants (Part 2)

Here’s the second part of my vintage souvenir penants post. The first one one last week featured vintage penants for U.S. destinations, and this week it’s all the Canadian destinations. These great old penants were discovered in my in-laws basement when doing a huge clear up. One of my fantasies is discovering nice old forgotten gems in lofts and basements, so this really was an exciting find.

Vintage Souvenir Penants (Part 1)

Recently discovered these wonderful vintage souvenir penants while clearing up my in-law’s basement. This series is of a bunch of US destinations (plus the RMS Queen Mary) all circa 1930s – 1960s Next week.  I’ll show all the Canadian destinations. If you like these, you’ll enjoy my Vintage Luggage Tag post from a while back. Thanks to Ron for bestowing this great collection on me.

Vintage penants from Disneyland, New York City, Columbia University, Cornell University, St. Petersberg Florida, Cleveland, Buffalo.

Bull Ring type

Just had a trip to the sunny, south of Spain and visited one of the few remaining bull fight rings in Mijas. No bull fights that day (thank goodness), but I did have a nice self-tour of this miniature bull ring, with my new camera and f0.95 lens. Love those ceramic seat numbers, and have always loved vintage bull fight posters.