Marks by Humans

The official biography I use states that I was born in an antique store. This may be a fair amount of hyperbole, as I was not actually born within the walls of the antique store my father and his father owned and operated. Rather I was born in a very old home that housed many of the same tables, rugs and lamps found at my family’s antique store. Well actually I was born in a hospital, but whatever…

Many of us come to graphic design in seemingly odd ways. From comic books to MTV, we sometimes miss the fact  that what we looked at as children has helped form our interests as adults. It wasn’t until, as an adult, I found this book on silvermarks in my parents home that I realized I’d been interested in identity design since before it was corporate. Recently I was asked by a client if I was familiar with Limoges marks. I was stoked. Here are some resources and images on markmaking the way it was done when the mark was of the maker and was part of the object being made. Little is more inspiring to me than the humanity if these marks.

Images from: The Book of Old SilverMarksfinder.com, and OldandSoldPottery.com


About August Heffner

August Heffner is a graphic designer, art director, educator and illustrator. He was born in an antique store in St. Louis, MO and moved to New York City to work for his design heroes Matteo Bologna and Stephen Doyle. For awhile he worked for a really, really big branding firm. He is now a design manager at The Museum of Modern Art, the art director of Diner Journal as well as an illustrator and educator.

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