What's All This Then?
What's All This Then?
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Just in time for gift giving, a metallic embossed cover, a new binding and orange spine, plus Drapln-designed wrapping paper and a "To/From" sticker. Our Field Notes winter limited-edition is Black Ice.
The Field Notes Midwest Headquarters is open for business. Plan on stopping by our shop, warehouse and studio in the Chicago's Fulton Market District, at 401 North Racine Avenue for holiday shopping, or just to say hello. Check our holiday hours and a list of special events here including a Happy Hour (thanks to Half Acre Beer Company) on Friday, and pie and coffee (thanks to Big Delicious Planet) and Aaron James Draplin signing books and shooting the breeze on Saturday.
Since 2004, we have been doing our part to encourage acrimony and hard feelings at family gatherings. Face it, you'll probably fight about something at your holiday get-together, it might as well be something important, like whether or not you're in the two percent of the world's population that Albert Einstein purportedly claimed could solve this puzzle. So... Who Owns The Fish?
It's not quite like faking the moon landing, but the film we made for the release of our new Field Notes Quarterly Edition for Fall, Lunacy, was made entirely using the same sort of practical, analog effects that you'd need to employ if you were going to stage that event, back in the day. So fun. So messy.
Our annual warning to trick-or-treaters, in the style of Hilaire Belloc.
Chauncey H. Griffith's Bodoni Poster Black was developed for Mergenthaler in 1929 and features strong verticals and shallow descenders. It's regularly employed for era-specific "Appearing Nightly at the Copacabana" lobby-card-ish announcements and by and large it's serviceable, if not particularly interesting. But, just in case you find yourself in need of a two skinny chicks whispering near the coke mirror, late 70's, Los Angeles sort of vibe, set it tight in all-caps with almost no line spacing. Suggested pairing: Univers Light Extra Condensed.
Several years ago, on a whim, we asked people to read their favorite short poems into our voice mail for a project we called Verse By Voice. And lots of people did, creating a poetry meme!. To get the idea, here's novelist Zadie Smith reading Frank O'Hara's Animals.
"In 1966 Norman Rockwell really needed a spacesuit and NASA didn't want to give him one." Now, that is a lede. An excellent, illustrated article by Darren Garret, The Improbable, Bold History of Space Concept Art.
There's something for everyone in our Museum of Online Museums. For example, Voices of East Anglia's groovy Japanese print ads from the 60s and 70s collection. Like most cultural institutions, The MoOM needs the support of the community to survive. Well, not really, since we don't have a building or a staff or even those cheap little round colored badges that you hook on your collar when you attend... We do however have a new version of The MoOM Mug, which is available exclusively to benefactors.
A list of all the brilliant people who have helped us by guest editing Fresh Signals can be found here.
Other recent features are listed on Page Two.
A Taxonomy of London Coffee-Shop Names.
So you know, how much it costs to power the Death Star.
Hubert Roguski reimagines modern cities with retro maps.
"Conway, 77, claims never to have worked a day in his life. Instead, he purports to have frittered away reams and reams of time playing. Yet he is Princeton's John von Neumann Professor in Applied and Computational Mathematics..." John Conway's Life in Games, by Siobhan Roberts.
"Have you ever done a puzzle that has no beginning or end? Where you don't know up from down? Get lost in the Infinite Galaxy Puzzle."
Lightning over Colorado.
So you know, the 52 things Tom Whitwell learned in 2016 included the fact that "Google's advertising tools can track real-world shop visits. If a customer sees an ad then visits the relevant store a few days later, that conversion will appear in Google Adwords. Customers are tracked via (anonymised) Google Maps data." Via Kottke.
RIP Salvador "Buddy" Ganir. Legendary.
When Cars Ruled the Night: New York City, 1974-1976, written by Luc Sante, photos by Langdon Clay.
"This was supposed to be the joke entry, but it was f**king fantastic." It's cold out, why not try a Hot Beer?
Star Wars Beer Steins
A collection of unique beer bottle openers.
"Every morning Fidel would walk out in his fatigues and ask me if his outfit was 'too matchy matchy.' It was funny every time." The Fidel I Knew Was the Life of the Party, by Dave Hill. Thanks Marsh.
"In an e-mail to readers on Monday, editors of the Dunbar Family Annual Christmas Update announced that due to logistical constraints, they had decided to cease print publication of the newsletter, which will move to a web-only distribution model."
"But now I know what I need to do to make this sh*t right again. I'm gonna make some overdue amends with the harvest gods and gather up every last scrap of Fall I can find, pile it on top of that mouse toilet, then douse it with a nice big can of autumnal gasoline and torch this expired-assed season to kingdom f*cking come. Fall is f*cking over, f*ckheads. " (If you can't handle the swears, don't click but you'll be missing a masterpiece.)
"That's when patrons will notice that the black, gray and white counter, resting on a simple wood and cement base, is actually inventively constructed out of millions of Lego blocks..." Designer Yusuke Sek's interior for the new Bake Cheese Tart store in Kyoto is wildly inventive and fun. Also the product looks delicious, "The best cheese tart in your life ever for you. We have so much passion for cheese tart SERIOUSLY."
1600, a new app from the White House. Yes, that White House.
The illustration and design portfolio of Marie-laure Cruschi. Four stars.
"Not long ago, neighborhood newsstands where the place to go for information and daily news. In big urban centers like NYC, those were everywhere. In 1950 there were more than 1500 newsstands across town. Lately people started to access news through digital devices, bringing down print media sales. That, of course, had a huge effect on the presence of newsstands in the city. Today's numbers are closer to 300 units than the mighty 1500 from back ago."
When robots fight. Thanks Marshall.
One more time because it's great. So you know, Proofreading Marks as posted by Mr. Heller.
"Cue that silent head exploding poof gesture..." Public Image Ltd. by Muriel Spark.
"Painting is probably much more exciting than advertising, so why shouldn't it be done with that power and gusto, with that impact." James Rosenquist. F-111. 1964-65.
"Clearly, the intended audience for these things was the same audience that was waiting for that awesome A-Ha video to come on again." How Casio's Tinny Keyboards Quietly Inspired a Music Revolution, by Ernie Smith.
So you know, tourism slogans from around the world.
New from Studio Neat, "Canopy is a case for your Apple Magic Keyboard that folds open to create a stand for your iPad or iPhone. Now you can use a full size, honest-to-god keyboard with your device."
Fantastic illustrated piece by Betsy Mason on the The Best New Maps, according to cartographers.
"Malick's goal as a filmmaker is to educate the human eye to see like his camera does. If our habits of vision are characterized by ambition, skepticism and greed, Malick inspires us with the virtues of patience, appreciation and awe. He offers not new facts or arguments but persuasive images of the world as if filtered through such virtues. Alongside these images he presents a character in each film who expresses, with increasing confidence and dignity, the point of view epitomized by the camera." The Perspective of Terrence Malick, by John Baskin for The Point.
Roomba commits suicide, confuses cat.
Director Wes Anderson re-teams with actor Adrien Brody for this H&M Christmas ad.
Page Two contains the previous 40 Fresh Signals, recent features, a key to the icons and the categorical archives.
One of the most popular parts of our site is The Museum of online Museums (MoOM) which is updated quarterly. Please consider joining the MoOM Board of Directors. A subscription comes with a handsome coffee mug but none of the snootiness so often associated with the patronage of old-school cultural institutions.
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Supporting the MoOM requires a simple annual non-tax-free contribution of $75. In exchange for your generosity, you'll receive one sweet, tall coffee mug and a permanent listing and link as a member of the Board of Directors. Thank you in advance for your consideration.