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Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Women of the Rock

Posted by on Thu, Aug 26, 2010 at 11:38 AM

By Joanna Wecht, 2008
  • By Joanna Wecht, 2008
Emily, whenever you may find her.
  • Emily, whenever you may find her.
Certain Saturday nights, Emily Pothast wears all white, takes the stage with three men also wearing all white—all of them becoming the screens upon which video projections play for the next hour and a half—and opens her mouth very wide to let out some very incredible sounds that seem to come from a place very deep inside her. This is her fronting the psychedelic band Midday Veil, which you really need to see.

But I happen to live across a little courtyard from Emily in a Capitol Hill apartment building, and there are plenty of other, quieter nights when I catch a glimpse of her in the window, framed in dim light, hunched over the drawing table, making drawings for the band's posters and CD covers.

Some of her drawings are the most recent objects in Tether Design Gallery's show Thunderbitch: Women Designers in Northwest Rock 1966-2010, which runs through this Saturday, August 28. Pothast wrote about it in this week's paper:

Thunderbitch's evocative title refers to a pseudonym used by the endlessly fascinating Catherine Weinstein, a seminal 1960s and '70s illustrator from Portland who, in addition to being an erstwhile female race-car driver who excelled in the male-dominated field of professional gig poster design, happened to be a gun enthusiast who once shot a neighbor for making too much noise at a party celebrating the birth of his child.

The bitchez are here. A great interview by Joey Veltkamp with Pothast is here.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

This Year's Hempfest Poster

Posted by on Wed, Aug 18, 2010 at 4:30 PM



Hempfest is this Saturday and Sunday. Here's more info. And the big news at this year's event: The folks behind the pot initiative that failed to make the ballot this year say they're going to announce a new campaign to run another initiative in 2011. "We are going to put it on the ballot next year for sure," says Douglas Hiatt, spokesman for Sensible Washington. He says the measure—somewhat controversial because the language eliminated all pot penalties from the state books with no limitations (legalizing selling, growing, distributing, etc.)—will be the "same initiative, better plan."

(In case you're wondering about the poster's text (i.e., "This ones for you Jack" [sic]), "Jack" is the late Jack Herer, author of The Emperor Wears No Clothes, a book about the virtues of hemp that helped start the modern pot-legalization movement.)


Friday, August 13, 2010

Monday, July 26, 2010

Clip Art of the Day

Posted by on Mon, Jul 26, 2010 at 12:00 PM

The Stranger production department subscribes to a number of clip-art sites and every once in awhile we run across something funny, freaky, or inexplicable.

Slog-tipper Katie was searching for a "model, female", and sent this screen shot of the results:


I mean sure, I guess they're female, and maybe they are hella-sexy, supermodel cows. I don't know from sexy cows.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Missing Missy

Posted by on Fri, Jul 9, 2010 at 3:52 PM

More from the hilarious pie charts man. Can it possibly be real? I love him either way.


Via Jezebel and everywhere.


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

So Many 'Top Whatever' Lists, So Little Time...

Posted by on Wed, Jun 30, 2010 at 1:36 PM think of a cover concept.


On the left: New York magazine, June 2003. On the right: Seattle magazine, July 2010. Always remember: The Internet is watching.

Via Robert Newman at

Clip Art of the Day

Posted by on Wed, Jun 30, 2010 at 12:08 PM

The Stranger production department subscribes to a number of clip-art sites and every once in awhile we run across something funny, freaky, or inexplicable.


WHAT IS IT?! I searched for "hot dog"!!!!! GAHHHHHH!!!!!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Totally SFW Pin-Ups!

Posted by on Wed, Jun 16, 2010 at 2:34 PM

Takin it ALL off...
  • Takin' it ALL off...

Eizo is a medical imaging company that offered this calendar as a promotion: x-rays of sexy pin-up girls. HAWT!


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Friday, June 11, 2010

Clip Art of the Day

Posted by on Fri, Jun 11, 2010 at 10:38 AM

The Stranger production department subscribes to a number of clip-art sites and every once in awhile we run across something funny, freaky, or inexplicable.

When you search for "child" and "play" you get this disturbing image:


Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Re: Quit Fucking with My Mind, Potato Chips!

Posted by on Wed, Jun 9, 2010 at 9:34 PM

It's like this:


And that's just bad baby design.


Tuesday, June 1, 2010

But What's The W For?

Posted by on Tue, Jun 1, 2010 at 3:31 PM


Probably NSFYW...

A is for Anus, B is for Boobies, C is for Come, D is for Deepthroat... but what's the W for? Whipped cream? Am I just dirty that I think that's poop?

Maps Are Cool

Posted by on Tue, Jun 1, 2010 at 1:42 PM

I love maps. Also, information design in general, like graphs and stuff. But especially maps!

My very first freelance design project was designing a guide/pamphlet around a map for the Ohio & Erie Canal. I met an actual cartographer (Yes! They still exist! MapQuest maps are not magically computer-generated!) and he introduced me to the intricacies of map-making. (Hi, Ken!) Since then I have appreciated maps as unique design problems: like all information design, form must follow function. But form is what the viewer notices first, and bad form can destroy function.

The new 2010 MTA subway map.
  • The new 2010 MTA subway map.
Anyway, the MTA (that's New York City's transit authority, and they have actual underground trains, which is awesome. *sigh*) has redesigned the subway map for the first time in a decade.

Overall the design changes are subtle, but I think they're mostly important. I like the color changes... they feel more contemporary, which feels right for NYC. I think the focus on the bulk of the system makes sense, over the previous map which lent more space to Staten Island. (Perhaps New Yorkers would feel differently... anyone?) The drop-shadow under the subway lines? Eh, not so crazy about that. Supposedly it makes the lines stand out more, but generally speaking I tend to think drop-shadows are over-rated. In this case they were handled just fine, they don't take away from the legibility, but on something with so many intricate details I think adding to the visual clutter was risky.

Take a look at the earlier maps shown in the article as well... I'm a big fan of the simplicity of the 1972 map.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Color Theory

Posted by on Tue, May 4, 2010 at 11:39 AM

Two color-related links for you:


First, according to a new study, changing the color of hospital gowns and hospital sheets to match the flesh tones of the patient could make diagnosis more accurate and easier.

"Small shifts in skin color can have tremendous medical implications, and we have proposed a few simple tools—skin-colored gowns, sheets, and adhesive tabs—that could better arm physicians to make more accurate diagnoses."


And second, if you're trying to decide on a color scheme for your ad, your web page, your bedroom, or you want to waste five minutes today, you might enjoy this tool: the Color Scheme Designer.

UPDATE: Pantone has released their Fall 2010 color report!

Friday, April 30, 2010

New Logo of the Day

Posted by on Fri, Apr 30, 2010 at 3:47 PM

I'm sure you've all noticed that Seattle Met (née Metropolitan) has a new logo:


Read the whole story here. I'm glad to see I'm not the only art director who uses chocolate syrup—in one way or another—to make major design decisions.

RIP Leslie Buck

Posted by on Fri, Apr 30, 2010 at 3:09 PM


Leslie Buck, designer of the iconic "Anthora" coffee cup, has died at age 87.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Clip Art of the Day

Posted by on Thu, Apr 29, 2010 at 3:04 PM

The Stranger production department subscribes to a number of clip-art sites and every once in awhile we run across something funny, freaky, or inexplicable.


This is what happens when you search for "Cowboy".

Monday, April 19, 2010

LOST Tarot

Posted by on Mon, Apr 19, 2010 at 5:42 PM


I'll admit it: The little goth girl inside me has a thing for Tarot decks. Not just Tarot decks, but religious and mythological symbolism of all types. (oh god, pull up mary, don't spiral into a geek sermon on symbolism...) OK, anyway, that combined with my obvious love of design and my obsession with LOST makes these Tarot cards by Alex Griendling irrisistable.

via Geekologie

This Is Pretty

Posted by on Mon, Apr 19, 2010 at 4:34 PM

You should look at/listen to it.

(thanks, Morgan!)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Typography Fail

Posted by on Fri, Apr 16, 2010 at 10:24 AM

Apparently, the iPad lacks good typography. This is very distressing, since one of the things I imagine using the iPad for is reading electronic books.

These decisions were small or unnoticeable to the millions of future iPad buyers watching the announcement. But they stuck out like a sore thumb to typographers, whose job it is to make small, unnoticeable decisions that make text easier and more enjoyable to read.

This is exactly what good typography should be. Like editing in a film, when it's good you don't notice it but when it's bad it completely disrupts the experience.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Killer Design

Posted by on Fri, Apr 9, 2010 at 5:46 PM


You should check out all of lunchbreath's stuff on flickr! It's pretty design and pretty hilarious, like his Underachieving At-Ats. But I especially appreciated this poster:

Clip Art of the Day

Posted by on Fri, Apr 9, 2010 at 2:17 PM

The Stranger production department subscribes to a number of clip-art sites and every once in awhile we run across something funny, freaky, or inexplicable.


I was searching for an alien. I can't imagine under what circumstances one would need this illustration.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Oh, OH!

Posted by on Thu, Apr 1, 2010 at 2:50 PM


I would like to talk about the ugly new design for Ohio's license plates because I care about design and because I am from Ohio. (Cleveland, specifically.)

Ohio's old license plate design wasn't amazing, but it was better. That design is known as the "Birthplace of Aviation design". (You may ask why we are called "The Birthplace of Aviation". It is because the Wright Brothers were born in Dayton, OH. [Yes I still identify as an Ohioan... which only gets my poor mother's hopes up that I will move home.])

This new plate is just a monstrosity of shapes and colors. It's a classic case of too much going on. The message is "OMG Ohio is SO AWESOME look we have farms and fields and cities and colors and also the Wright Brothers were born here and also we have this logo!" And I am not a fan of the new Ohio logo... again, I didn't love the old one, but the new one is just TOO MUCH.

I think Washington's plates are nice. Not great, but nice. Certainly better than some of the plates out there. Certainly better than poor Ohio's new plates.

Remember when plates were just a solid color with the state name on them? I like those. Simple. Functional.

Anyone have a vote for the best/worst plates in the union?


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