There exist few illustrators who have contributed in the fabric of Australian vernacular more than Alex Stitt. The Melbourne-based illustrator responsible for the iconic characters such as ‘Norm’ the couch potato (Life. Be in it Campaign) or 'Sid' the sun-smart seagull of the Cancer Council of Victoria's well-known Slip, Slop, Slap Campaign.
Stitt's creative genius lay in his ability to distil a serious public health issue, into a simple visual idea, and then presenting animations in an engaging and approachable way. The characters resonated with the public of the time because they represented normal Australians and remain highly recognisable today.
Here are a few TV Spots:Continue Reading26.06 20130
The Watts Works - An interview with David Watts about his 3D scanning studio in Shinjuku,Tokyo
I was on facebook the other week and an old friend had uploaded a picture of herself as a realistic digital character, shot from every angle. After enquiring, she put me in contact with David Watts from Tokyo, the guy behind an interesting process that scans your entire body and converts it into a 3D model.
Basically, David has gathered heaps of SLR cameras and rigged them up so they simultaneously take a photo of you from every angle. Once the shot is taken, they are pieced together on a computer and you have a 3D portrait of yourself to view online or get 3D printed. The level of detail is incredible to say the least.
I contacted David and asked him a few questions about the scanner he built.
In a nutshell, describe the process in simple language.
‘We take 70 overlapping photos of you in the same instant. If two cameras can see a birthmark or some pattern we know where it is relative to the two cameras. Multiply that by 70 cameras and we can know a lot about the whole surface of you.’
What are your backgrounds and interests?
‘I studied Video/3D Animation and kept crashing my computer and then I studied Computer Science to better understand why. Since then I've done a bit of design—antler chandeliers and a couple of wallets and a tiny bit of 3D graphics programming. I want to do more of the latter, hence the 3D scanning business.’Continue Reading14.06 20130
‘Kinetic Rain’, Changi Airport, Singapore.
Titled ‘Kinetic Rain’, the ‘Kinetic Sculpture’ (which means ‘dependant on movement for its effect’) consists of 1,216 mechanically controlled Bronze Raindrops suspended on wire, working in unison.
After watching the video 5 or 6 times. I started thinking about the sculpture, in the context of a smart phone world, and how the sculpture will quickly become a promotional tool for all of Singapore, with user-generated content.
Everyone’s got a smart phone and Kenetic Rain is the first thing you see when touch down in Changi. It’s therefore it’s highly likely this would be the first thing tourists would ‘snap’ as they get off the plane. And rightly so, If this is your first interaction with the country of Singapore, it’s a pretty damn good one.
I wasn’t surprise when I did a further search on the sculpture and despite only being installed for a couple of days, there was already thousands of photos and videos online about it. These images would be flowing through feeds like blood through veins.
The sculpture was created by a Berlin firm ART+COM, who also did a smaller version for the BMW museum a couple of years ago, which received many accolades at the time.Continue Reading10.07 20120
You Got to Have Fun...
A recent visit to the annual AdTech Conference at The Hilton, re-enforced a key and fundamental point in great ideas, design and innovation. On the day, I had the pleasure of two interesting speakers but the one that stood out for me was the creative lead at Google, Tom Uglow.
In a way, this blog article follows on from my previous write-up: “At The Computer or Away From The Computer?” Tom emphasised in his presentation that a lot of the great ideas comes from: Playing, Experimenting and Having Fun, which leads to innovation. At the Google labs, it is quite the norm to see guys playing in one corner. While some may ask such questions: “What on Earth are those guys doing?” and “Why are they wasting time?”; I have come to complete agreement that innovation and great ideas can and do come from “FUN”. This is where the spontaneous and original ideas come from.
Me having fun...Continue Reading16.04 20120
3D printing and Lego houses
I recently watched the latest post-death documentary on Steve Jobs. The early days of the first Apple computers and its origins in a Californan garage got me thinking about another company that operates in New York called MakerBot Industries.
Makerbot Industries are the first company to successfully develop and manufacture ‘personal’ 3d printers. Up until recently 3d printers have been expensive and out of reach of the general public, similar to the days before Jobs and Apple.
How 3d printer works.
3D printed flute:
The Makerbot's design essentially puts the manufacturing process into the hands of the consumer. Imagine a whole factory worth of tooling and fabricating condensed into a foot cubed. Users could effectively design an object on a computer, print it on a MB and use it all in the same day.
MakerBot in action:
The reflections of the people in the Jobs documentary expressed his true vision for making the world a better place. A tool like the MakerBot has the potential to do the same. Third-world communities without the infrastructure required to manufacture building materials and construct sustainable houses could use the machine to significantly improve their living conditions.Continue Reading06.02 20120
Throw out the old logo? Norton your life.
Going back to the heritage of the brand is something we at Fenton Stephens often advocate as a reference point for defining the brand’s voice ‘today’.
This proved to be an invaluable approach for design studio Carter Wong and master typographer Geoff Halpin, in their challenge to evolve the identity for Norton motorcycles.
The designers thought it would simplify the Norton logotype to remove the cross on the lower case ‘t’ and simply use the swoosh running through the ‘t’ to make the letter read. In researching the history of the logo however, they found out that the original logo drawn by Mister Norton’s daughter Ethel in 1915 had already ‘discovered’ this very same typographical shorthand.
The ‘double-crossed ‘t’ did not appear until 1924, and stayed around until Carter Wong’s 2010 re-design.Continue Reading10.12 20100