Monthly Archives: February 2011

Thought for Friday

Atelier or artists studio

Atelier or artists studio

Back to the Future?

Recently over on Lynda Relph Knight’s Design Week Editor’s blog I came across this:

If a creative industries debate at the House of Commons this week is anything to go by, the Liberal  Democrat element of the coalition Government is in denial about 40 per cent cuts to education in the design sector.

Challenged from the floor by Seymour Powell’s own Dick Powell about the cuts, Lib Dem MP Don Foster, who co-chairs his party’s policy committee on Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, said he didn’t know what the D&AD chairman was talking about. It seems education budgets aren’t being slashed, just differently funded, if Foster is to be believed – funded, we assume, through the £9000 fee levy on students.

Lynda goes on to say:

Oh well, that’s okay then. We won’t be missing out on top creative talent any time soon, just because prospective newcomers have the wrong postcode or come from lowly stock financially, or educational institutions lack the wherewithal to support them. Tell that to the colleges currently making tough decisions about resources and courses.

From recent posts about internships and the current advertising on apprenticeships, I feel that maybe it’s time for something new (or rather old, very old in fact). What about a return to the ‘Atelier Method?”

The atelier system emerged around the seventeenth century and later became the most common method of training painters. The atelier system or method is a highly structured and systematic curriculum where, through practice in studio, skills were  passed on from tutor to student. Students must complete each task to the instructor’s satisfaction before progressing to the next. This system is referred to as “systematic progression” or “systematic teaching and learning.”

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Eric Gill

Eric Gill

Eric Gill

Arthur Eric Rowton Gill (22 February 1882 – 17 November 1940) described himself on his gravestone as a stone carver. To many who appreciated his work as a sculptor, printmaker and typeface designer he is far more than that.

Ariel between Wisdom and Gaiety

Ariel between Wisdom and Gaiety

Gill remains a controversial figure even today. But it is his for his work that he will be chiefly remembered. I have posted about him before and wanted to commemorate his birthday with a further post today.

Eric Gill seahorse Midland Hotel Morecombe

Eric Gill seahorse Midland Hotel Morecombe

Designers and typographers are very familiar with his types which include: Gill Sans (perhaps his most famous), Perpetua, Solus, Joanna, Aries, Bunyan, Pilgrim (a recut of Bunyan) and Jubilee.

Gill Sans

Gill Sans

The BBC adopted Gill Sans in the 90s for its famous wordmark and on-screen graphics.

For more information on Eric Gill you can go to Wikipedia, The Eric Gill Society, The Ditchling Museum and Identifont.

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“We need design at the heart of social and economic renewal”

Design Council and CABE logos

I came across this the other day from Design Observer:

An interesting rebound effect of public spending cuts in the UK is that the UK Design Council and CABE (Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment) are to merge.

The move brings UK policy for design, architecture and public space together in a single organization.

The new entity will provide a one stop shop for design support and advice to industry, communities, central and local government.

You can read more by following the link above. But I did like this quote from Lord Bichard, Chair of the design Council, who said: “”Now more than ever we need design at the heart of social and economic renewal, and a strong message about design in all its forms. I am looking forward to working with our colleagues at CABE and with a wide range of industry partners to make this a success.”

Now if only our government really would put design at the heart of social and economic renewal we may get some interesting and even groundbreaking solutions. There’s a thought indeed!

 

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Not a thought for Friday

No, this is not a thought for Friday. More of a ramble on Friday, so bear with me. I have a head cold and I’m feeling a little under the weather so I’ve grabbed a moment to jot something down. I have to admit that I’ve found it difficult to find the time to post regularly this last week. So many things kept getting in the way. There are a number of subjects that I wanted to write about; Moleskin Hacks, Comics Sans, UK design policy and apprenticeships, to name a few (and I will get around to them), but they may take me some time to research and do fair justice to. I also want to come back to a few items that I’ve already covered, particularly Hypercard and of course venture into new areas. Suggestions are welcome.

But what’s inspired me to continue, apart from you (and the stats show your numbers are growing!) – are people like DavidRichard and Mike who continue to produce entertaining posts week after week. In fact David has just reached blog post 1,000!

So take a look at their blogs, but remember to come back and visit. Have a good weekend.

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Thought for Friday

Light bulb Drawing

U.S. Patent#223898: Electric-Lamp. Issued January 27, 1880.

“Being busy does not always mean real work. The object of all work is production or accomplishment and to either of these ends there must be forethought, system, planning, intelligence, and honest purpose, as well as perspiration. Seeming to do is not doing.”

Thomas A. Edison
American Inventor
Born: February 11, 1847

Edison bulb

Thomas Edison's first successful light bulb model, used in public demonstration at Menlo Park, December 1879

For more go here.

 

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Anthony Caro

Paper Sculpture No.98 (1981)

Paper Sculpture No.98 (1981)

I’ve just finished watching an interview between Mark Lawson and Anthony Caro. Listening to Caro was a great pleasure.

This is from Anthony Caro.com: “His questioning approach opened up new possibilities, both formally and with regard to subject matter. His innovative work as well as his teaching led to a flowering and a new confidence in sculpture worldwide.”

Well done BBC 4, another good programme.

For more visit: http://www.anthonycaro.org

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Thought for Friday

Despair t-shirts

Despairwear

Despair Inc.

Times are very uncertain for many of us just now. You just have to turn on the news channels, listen to the radio talk shows, read the papers or surf the net. Yes, times are tough. So what can we do about it. Here’s my advice: despair!

No, not really ‘despair’, but Despair Inc. Take a look and cheer up, things can only get worse…

 

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