Obsessions: August 14, 2009

M is for My First Dictionary, a reading primer in which horrible things happen to everyone, yet no one bats an eye. It’s a perfect bedtime read.

High Glitz: The Extravagant World of Beauty Pageants is the usual sort of look inside the world of child beauty pageants: tarted-up children against a backdrop of incongruously traditional values and ruffles everywhere. But as tired as the subject matter may be to our always-on and always-shrill world of reality TV, the imagery, shot by Susan Anderson, is still magnificent.

Pitch Design Union is a wonderful catch-all design and imagery blog written by a young designer, Margot Harrington, who’s got a wonderful eye for work with gentle humor and fascinating emotional texture.

The Plateau is one of my favorite games for the iPhone. It’s a simple conceit: spheres in space tangled together in a web of threads. Your job as a player is to detangle the planets against a pulsing, haunting soundtrack, up to 50 (sometimes maddening) levels. Richly painted in both color and mood, this game is perfect for those of you ready to move from casual games to something more emotionally engaging to last for a few hours.

Post27 is a fantastic store in Chicago focusing on limited-run or one-of-a-kind designs, many made with refurbished materials from older pieces. The store, run by Angela Finney and Barkley Hoffman, also features an extensive curated selection of vintage pieces, plus new work from several local Chicago designers. The couple regularly hosts design events for local designers, such as Ottomania, the results of which are pictured here. During Ottomania, Chicago designers were invited to design and show custom ottomans.

Brush Pilot is a fantastic idea that Adobe should buy immediately and bundle with CS5: a self-standing application that lets you preview and install all of your Photoshop and Elements brushes on your Mac, rather than just guessing what’s in which folder.

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