Signalnoise and Animal Crossing: City Folk

Signalnoise in Animal Crossing: City Folk

Being a big supporter of Nintendo for most of my life, it’s no big surprise that I fell under the spell of Animal Crossing. I clocked many hours playing the original Game Cube version, and am currently harvesting my peaches on the newest installment, Animal Crossing: City Folk for the Wii.

I got the idea this weekend to design some shirts for my little dork to wear as he ran around town planting flowers and talking to animals. And what better shirts to wear then ones sporting the logos of designers who’s work I enjoy? Super nerdy, I know :)

Please pardon the quality of these shots, it’s the best I could do getting a capture from my television.

Signalnoise in Animal Crossing: City Folk
The Signalnoise logo

Joshua Davis in Animal Crossing: City Folk
Joshua Davis‘ owl logo

ISO50 in Animal Crossing: City Folk
Scott Hansen’s Dual shirt

Obey Giant in Animal Crossing: City Folk
The Obey Giant logo

That being said, if anyone reading is also into the game, feel free to drop me an email with your friend code, character name and town name. I’d love to swing by your town and will be sure to add these shirts to your shop for you and your neighbors to wear :)

Gasoline Morning for Sweet Content ’09

Gasoline Morning by James White

I was asked by Evgeny Kiselev to contribute to the 2009 designer calendar entitled Sweet Content, so I finished off this piece I call Gasoline Morning. I’ve been working on the crystalline facets of this piece for a little while now, experimenting with some geometric shapes taking aim at mimicing a diamond cut.

The calendar will feature some amazing talent such as Peter Jaworoski (The Hejz), Malota, Merdanchik, and many more, showcasing six russian artists and six international artists. I can’t wait to have this hanging on my wall.

Check out the promo page for Sweet Content right here.

Wolves

Wolves by James White

Time for some metal. This piece is influenced by some of my favorite metal acts spanning many sub-genres of the sound.

Metal has had it’s ups and downs in terms of design over the years, but I love the ambient brooding nature some bands are taking their work over the past few years. The style is pretty prevalent on labels such as Hydrahead and Ipecac, and I first started noticing it with bands like Pelican, Isis, The Red Sparowes and Boris.

The use of natural elements, such as landscapes, ocean, trees, mountains, etc mixed with brooding architecture and form perfectly captures the essence of this new breed of sound.

Signalnoise at Arizona State University

Signalnoise at the FO SHO poster show

Signalnoise at the FO SHO poster show

Signalnoise at the FO SHO poster show

Signalnoise at the FO SHO poster show

Here are a few shots from the Fo Sho Poster Show and Silent Auction which took place at the Gallery of Design at Arizona State University on Monday, November 17th. The show was organized by fourth year students and judging by the turnout and sheer effort that went into the event, it was a resounding success.

The show featured some amazing work from Aesthetic Apparatus, Alex Trochut, Chuck Anderson, Invisible Creature, ISO50, James Jean, You Work for Them and many others. A couple of my own pieces were shown as well.

Congratulations to the fourth year Visual Communication Design students at Arizona State University for putting on such a great show, and big ups to Jake Schroeder for sending these photos along.

Signalnoise Tutorial in Computer Arts #156

James White in Computer Arts 156

I’m happy to announce that the latest installment of Computer Arts magazine, issue 156 has been released and features the tutorial I wrote entitled ‘Creating the New Retro’. This tutorial walks through the process behind creating the image above, minus text and logos, and explains the techniques used to produce the layered colored line aesthetic in 15 steps. Check it out in the Technique section of the mag.

The issue is also being shipped with a free 2009 calendar which features some amazing artists such as Guilherme Marconi, Evgeny Kiselev, Jon Burgerman and many others. I can’t wait to get this on my office wall.

Watch for issue 156 of Computer Arts to hit newsstands worldwide in the coming weeks.

Forge Engine demo

Signalnoise.com Forge demo by James White

Since posting my Black Glass pieces over the past couple of days I’ve had some readers inquire about the Forge engine I use to create random arrangements of shapes. So I thought it a good time to upload a little demo of what the engine actually does, rather then trying to explain in detail. Check out the demo here.

I built Forge a couple of years ago, inspired by the engines Joshua Davis builds to create his artwork. Being the art control-freak that I am, I needed a tool that would help me relinquish some control over the elements I use and allow them to move and shift on their own, thus introducing me to new arrangements that I hadn’t previously thought of. I am certainly not a programmer, so I had to look up a pile of tutorials and examples online before I finally got the engine to do what I wanted.

The programming behind my engine would probably make developers gag, or laugh, or both. But as clunky as Forge may be, it has performed like a champ. So check out the demo to see how the engine works, and hit Refresh a few times to see that no two arrangements are the same.

The Black Glass I and II

The Black Glass by James White

The Black Glass by James White

I have been spending some time researching photos of industrial decay recently, images of abandoned factories and warehouses that have been left at the mercy of nature. The work of people reclaimed by the land they were built on.

The wreckage inspired me to re-open my Forge engine. I created a number of abstract shapes based on the shadows of the abandoned factories, in dark corners or gloomy doorways, and fed them into the engine to see what compositions could be created on the fly. The Black Glass pieces were constructed using many outputs of shapes, layered on top of one another in an organic process where the composition build itself (in a way).

Here are some examples of what the engine spits out after I give it the shapes to handle:
The Black Glass: Forge outputs

I will be experimenting more on this to see how I can use the assets in different ways for different outcomes.

Inspiration: Canadian Hockey logos

Canadian NHL logos

Canadian NHL logos

It’s no secret that us Canadians love our hockey. Above is a selection of Canadian NHL logos from the past and present, which I wanted to write about after reading Jakub’s (ISO50) post entitled Logo Upgrade Design fail Vol. 1 where he analyzes the unfortunate redesign of our coveted Toronto Blue Jays logo.

It seems most sports teams have fallen to the same design motifs over the past 15 years, a snarling cartoon mascot with thick lines busting through a wall. Nothing can hold a candle to the simplistic, smart designs teams wore, and in some cases continue to wear amid the constantly upgraded logos of today. These logos have become so ingrained in Canadian culture, specifically Montreal and Toronto, that a redesign is almost unfathomable. Listed above are:

1. Montreal Canadiens: 1917 – present
2. Edmonton Oilers: 1979 – 1996
3. Quebec Nordiques: 1979 – 1995
4. Toronto Maple Leafs: 1970 – present
5. Vancouver Canucks: 1970 – 1980
6. Ottawa Senators: 1997 – 2007
7. Winnipeg Jets: 1990 – 1996
8. Calgary Flames: 1980 – present

And to anyone reading from Montreal, go Habs!