Curvature studies and vectors

Curvature study by James White

Curvature study by James White

Here are a couple of outputs I made while trying out some new curvy vector assets. The goal with these little studies are to see how the vectors react with one another as I add more, shift them around and adjust opacity and blending modes.

Curves used in this fashion are very easy to mess up, and I had a few iterations that looked like a mound of rainbow spaghetti. But I took my time and plucked out the problematic pieces to make the final result a bit smoother. Both of these images are the same PSD composition with different finishing methods. The first has a bit of a Chuck Anderson influence with the flares and orbs, the second with just straight-up color.

I also get asked about my personal vector assets quite a bit. So here is a little screen grab of just one of my AI documents containing my lines and curves.

Vector assets by James White

This is obviously a crumby representation of the pieces as it’s very zoomed out, but it should give an idea of the amount of personal shapes and things I’ve created to build my posters. Having a personal and compiled library on hand is quite handy.

Inspiration: Alejandro Fuentes, Los Fokos

Alejandro Fuentes, Los Fokos

Alejandro Fuentes, Los Fokos

Alejandro Fuentes, Los Fokos

Alejandro Fuentes, Los Fokos

Alejandro Ivan Fuentes

Here are a few samples of the stunning illustration work by Los Angeles based illustrator Alejandro Fuentes, otherwise known as Los Fokos. Really digging Alex’s use of mixed media, mingling photography into his drawn work almost invisibly. Wonderful sense of color as well, just look at the effort he puts into adding color to his linework. Excellent stuff.

Check out more of Alex’s work at his personal site, Los Fokos.

Signalnoise Broadcast #1

If you missed the opportunity to tune in last night for the first Signalnoise Broadcast, here is the recorded video. Hopefully it will alright with the absence of the chat window, which is where I got all of the questions and content I was talking about. Being that this is my first attempt at this kind of discourse, the audio levels were a bit messed up so I apologize for that. I will be looking into buying a proper microphone for the next installment. Learn as ya go, I guess.

I had a great time talking to all who tuned in, answering questions and generally talking design. Thanks very much to everyone who made this a success and there will certainly be more to come.

Extinct by Network Osaka

Extinct by Network Osaka

Extinct by Network Osaka

Extinct by Network Osaka

Extinct by Network Osaka

Extinct by Network Osaka

Extinct by Network Osaka

Extinct by Network Osaka

Extinct by Network Osaka

I have been enjoying the work of the talented Network Osaka for quite some time now, and wanted to share his stunning newly launched project entitled Extinct. D Kim researched and created 26 cards outlining various endangered species, and designed each animal in his own elegant and simplistic style. In his own words:

“The goal of this project is to bring awareness to the millions of species that are under threat because of climate change. I created 26 different cards with various endangered species. Each animal card is depicted with its own abstract representation symbolizing the departure of the unrecoverable beauty of these species.”

Just look at that map and information design, a beautifully executed project for spreading information on a topic more should take an interest in. Check out the full PDF version of Extinct here at Artist as Citizen, and also swing by Network Osaka’s website and Flickr stream for more of his work.

Signalnoise Live Broadcast: Sept 24, 8pm EST

Signalnoise Live Broadcast

I’ve recently seen a lot of people in the creative community taking advantage of their webcams to broadcast discussions, interviews and general QA sessions where people can tune in and comment via a text-based chat. I did an interview with Ryan over at DesignChat a little while back and had a great time with this live connection to other designers and artists.

So, I would like to try my hand at hosting my first Signalnoise Live Broadcast here on the site, where I will answer some questions posted by viewers in a free-form interview. This new platform might offer up a more unique, dynamic and interesting way of connecting with you guys. It just might be a good time :)

If this first session goes smooth, I might have a more regular schedule put into place. For now I want to keep things general, so if you have any questions at all you would like to fire me, like industry stuff, process, general experiences, inspirations . . . whatever you would like to ask, tune in tomorrow evening and fire away. If you would also like to potentially get a question into the queue, feel free to post it in a comment below. I’ll be talking for about an hour or so.

So, tune in tomorrow evening at 8pm EST for the first Signalnoise Live Broadcast event. I will post the link to follow here as well as on my Twitter. Hope to see you there, gang.

PS. Don’t worry, no Poltergeists will be possessing your computers.

The work of Stefan Kanchev

Stefan Kanchev

Stefan Kanchev

Stefan Kanchev

Stefan Kanchev

Stefan Kanchev

Stefan Kanchev

Stefan Kanchev

Here are some selected works from design master, Stefan Kanchev (1915 – 2001). The Bulgarian applied artist won competitions for typefaces, posters, trademarks, postcards, telegram forms, book designs and etc. many times and his works are world-famous and cited in the major applied arts encyclopedias. In 1994 Kanchev was recognized as one of the top trademark designers in the world beside the likes of Paul Rand and Saul Bass.

The above images are only a small sampling of the vast portfolio Kanchev created throughout his extensive career. A sharp eye for color and shape and a wonderful balance of form and function put Kanchev near the top of the heap for 20th century design. Be sure to click the logo images above to see the larger versions.

“Sometimes this graphical image is just one letter or combination of letters, sometimes it is a shape of something or just a symbol, other times it is a combination of shape and typeface. All these have matured in profound artistic processing, they have been changed, refined and in the end the artist has presented the work in a simplified, clear and unique way.”

The images and information in this post have been pulled from Stefankanchev.com, a wonderful resource outlining his life and his work.

Inspiration: Jordan Michael Gray

Jordan Michael Gray

Jordan Michael Gray

Jordan Michael Gray

Jordan Michael Gray

Jordan Michael Gray

Some great work from Kansas-based designer Jordan Michael Gray. Great use of de-saturated color palettes, nice painterly illustrations and a sharp eye for typography. I came across Jordan’s work quite by accident last week and turned out to be one of those gems I’m glad I bookmarked.

You can see more of Jordan’s work on his website, his Flickr stream, and why not give him a follow on Twitter.

Signalnoise for WiredUK Magazine

WiredUK October feature by James White

James White in Wired UK Magazine

I was approached by the kind folks over at WiredUK Magazine to design the title page for their October 2009 feature section. I’ve been a fan of Wired since back in the mid 90s so it was an honor to be able to contribute to the UK version of the magazine. My task was to simply design the numerical month ’10, 09′ in whatever way I saw fit. They even let me keep in my little Signalnoise logo.

The initial inspiration behind this piece came from a racecar track I had as a kid, combined with that of Epcot Centre ads from the early 80s.

The October issue should be on newsstands now in the UK, and where ever else it is sold. Big thanks to WiredUK for the wonderful opportunity, and to Gav Strange for snapping the photo above.