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The Art of Everyday

“One person’s garbage is the next person’s art.” “Art is in the eye of the beholder.” “The creative act is not performed by the artist alone; the spectator brings the work in contact with the external world by deciphering and …

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Le sac Français

Le sac (the bag) has long been a popular venue for commercial advertising in la belle France. Not so different from here, except le sac Françia.

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Ads with Strings Attached

There is a proud history to be told of the “hang-tag,” those printed bits of heavy paper or board attached with string, ribbon, wire or plastic that attaches to the product in some way. Unlike most forms of print ephemera, …

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Teeny Weeny Graphic Design

I am not a phillumenist. Although I like collecting matchbox labels. Phillumeny is the act of hoarding them (rather than lighting them). My interest is purely in what they say about graphic design.

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Sweet Type: Candy Packaging

The sweetest typography has long been found on candy packaging (candy bars and boxes). Every trick in the box was used, including shadows, outlines, embossed, debossed, metallic, Art Deco, Art Nouveau and Imperial style. Here (below) are a few I …

Matchless Originals from Japan

These are original sketches for Japanese match box labels created in the 1930s by an anonymous graphic artist. Rendered in black and white, they were meant to print in a single color. Some are drawn and lettered on slick paper …

The Vintage Speedball Textbook

I once found a set of Speedball pen nibs as a kid. I was familiar with conventional pen and ink usage, but had never seen nibs like this before. It wasn’t until taking a calligraphy course in college (with Professor …