It's part three of our journey through the design high points of Computer Arts' lifetime. Strap yourselves in for 101-150!
101 EBOY ARRIVES
The first computer graphics constructed simple images pixel by pixel, and ever since the industry has strived for technologies to create greater and greater realism. Steffen Sauerteig, Svend Smital and Kai Vermeer form eBoy in 1997 and embrace that early digital aesthetic, turning it into an extremely popular illustration style that’s all their own.
102 UNIVERSAL EVERYTHING AND NOKIA
It’s about individuality, communication and making things better: though hard to believe, thousands of balls bumping around – some in colour; some just black and white – are used to tell a stunning and moving narrative in 2008 when universal everything creates an art film to promote Nokia’s e71 smartphone.
103 SET THE TWILIGHT REELING
Visceral work shoots Stefan Sagmeister to design fame in 1996. His poster for Lou Reed’s album Set the Twilight Reeling sees him write all over the singer’s face, while his arresting poster promoting the aIga talk Fresh Dialogue features two disturbingly distended tongues. He later tops it in 1999 by having text carved into his flesh for another aIga poster.
104 THE INTRICACIES OF SI SCOTT
Beautiful swirling linework springing out of bold lettering, subtly drifting away from the letterforms, finding new spaces and creating a new look: Si Scott’s decorative lettering really catches the eye when he bursts onto the scene in 2006. He’s gone on to create incredible illustrations and motion work, and is now embracing 3D. Watch this space.
105 SUNSHINE, IN A BAG
Arguably the world’s first illustrated band, Gorillaz is a concept first put together by Blur’s Damon Albarn and comic artist Jamie Hewlett in 1997. Later they are joined by animation director Pete Candeland, who creates all their videos. The first EP, ‘Tomorrow Comes Today’, comes out in 2001 introducing Murdoc, 2D, Noodle and Russel Hobbs.
106 JON BURGERMAN ON THE COVER
One of our favourite illustrators, Jon Burgerman has created several covers for Computer Arts over the years. Issue 127 in September 2006 is the first – he goes to town with a doodle-tastic array of quirky line-drawn characters, together with plenty of colour. In issue 151 he returns to create our cover and shares the thinking behind his array of self-initiated gallery work.
107 GOODBYE BEIGE
In 1999 PCs are handling Photoshop better than ever, while Macs remain expensive beige boxes – until Apple releases the Power Mac G3 with its smart blue and Perspex tower case, and the Mac comes back onto the creative pro’s radar.
108 FREEHAND DISCONTINUED
Before Adobe acquires Macromedia and its software line in 2005, the vector drawing program FreeHand remains an extremely popular choice with designers, which we discover in 2001 when we give away a full, free copy of FreeHand 7 on our cover CD and the issue sells out. However, since 2007 Adobe has stalled FreeHand in favour of its own package, Illustrator. Some designers still love it and the South Africa 2010 World Cup poster, for instance, was created with the software. Alex Trochut still relies on FreeHand’s features – ones that aren’t in Illustrator. Sadly, it doesn’t run under Apple’s latest OS X operating systems.
109 WAR ORPHANS
German agency Kolle Rebbe wins a D&AD Black Pencil in 2007 for its use of illustrations in War Orphans, a hard-hitting advertising campaign for the charity Misereor. In each case, a nave illustration of a family is shown, with the parents in the images obliterated by bullets or shrapnel. The campaign opposes war in Somalia, Iraq and Chechnya.
110 CHUCK ANDERSON AND ESPN
Mixing media and using his digital skills, Chuck Anderson’s depictions of explosive American sports action for ESPN magazine in 2004 are just the beginning. He’s since worked with top ad agencies, international consumer brands and, indeed, Computer Arts.
111 LATTE, DOUBLE SHOT
In commemoration of the company’s 40th year in business, Starbucks redesigns its logo in 2011, dropping the type completely. In an earlier redesign its siren/mermaid icon had been considered too risqu and her breasts were removed. Ouch.
112 HAPPINESS FACTORY
In 2006, with Wieden+Kennedy’s brilliant concept and Psyop’s radiant CG animation skills, we discover that inside every Coca-Cola machine is a realm of steampunk technology and a jungle full of cute, furry creatures. Working together they manufacture each cold bottle of Coca-Cola.
113 UNIT EDITIONS
The adroit design commentator Adrian Shaughnessy and Tony Brook of Spin team up to bring the world Unit Editions in 2009, publishing a range of interesting books and posters – by graphic designers, for graphic designers. Each new item is published as a ‘unit’.
114 ADOBE LAUNCHES INDESIGN
A seismic shift in the world of DTP occurs with the arrival of InDesign in 1999, with its promise of greater integration of Illustrator and Photoshop-esque ways of working. One aspect everyone latches onto is its instantaneous drop shadows. Red text on black with a yellow drop? Sure.
115 ONEDOTZERO FOUNDED
1996: No one has done more to nurture digital film-making talent than the London-based organisation onedotzero, which commissions innovative short films by cutting-edge new directors, and runs all kinds of themed festivals showcasing the work around the world.
116 RADIOHEAD VIDEO SANS CAMERA
No cameras are used to shoot 2008’s Radiohead ‘House of Cards’ video, directed by James Frost. Instead he uses a geometric informatics system to capture the band live in 3D point clouds, and lidar laser apparatus to scan a street scene that is vaporised in the video.
117 SAVILLE DESIGNS MANCHESTER
When Peter Saville is made creative director of Manchester in 2004, Urbis holds a show of Saville’s work in his honour. His role is to work with the marketing section of Manchester City Council and bring forward better ways of representing Manchester to the world, and he has helped to drive an artistic and creative revival there.
118 PAULA SCHER: MOMA’S MOMMA
Well, no, the Pentagram partner is not the mother of MoMA strictly speaking, though she did have the creative credentials to give the world-renowned New York Museum of Modern Art its new identity in 2004, which is as contemporary as the art housed there.
119 NON-FORMAT COLLABORATES WITH US
Non-Format carves into the cover of our July 2009 issue, which was completely white, with a variety of graphical shapes die-cut into it. By folding back flaps you can see a splash of photographic colour showing through from page three, and the letters of the word ‘Birth’ are formed, in an abstract sort of way.
120 BARNBROOK RELEASES PATRIOT
Patriot is created by Jonathan Barnbrook in 1997 to extend the Exocet type family by giving it a sans-serif version. Exocet itself was released by migr in 1991 and was hugely popular in entertainment – it was used for the films Dogma and Demolition Man, and for the computer game Diablo, thanks to its capital ‘D’. It’s said to be one of the most pirated fonts out there.
121 CAMERA WARS
Nikon and Canon vie for supremacy in the digital SLR market in 2004, with the former introducing the D70 and the latter bringing out the EOS 300D. Excellent-quality and affordable digital cameras are sometimes overlooked as a technology that has changed studio life for the better, but nonetheless they have introduced the flexibility to fabricate new imagery into projects in all sorts of ways, based on snaps taken there and then.
122 THE BRILLIANCE OF VASAVA
Founded in Barcelona in 1997, every creative has seen the work of Vasava. The studio was selected to be part of the Adobe CS4 launch campaign and created a surrealist online demonstration of the software package with a backdrop of clouds, outer space and astral light projections. It was entitled ‘Melted Thoughts: An Allegory for the Creative Mind’.
123 ATTIK MAKES SOME NOISE
Noise 4 arrives in late 2001, when the Western world is still reeling from the 9/11 attacks and the design industry is suffering the dotcom crash. “The day we got our copies was 10 September 2001,” recalls co-founder James Sommerville. “We were excited, but obviously the day after it just felt like it didn’t matter what you sent anybody, no one would be interested.”
Nevertheless, the huge tome of work created by Attik’s designers around the world is both impressive and inspiring. The minute our copy arrives, creatives swarm it like ants around honey. Attik worked with Harper Collins to release it and, at 504 pages, it is opulently massive.
Previous and subsequent editions of Noise have been wonderful too, exploring different formats, stocks, printing processes and design styles. “In terms of self-promotion, Noise is doing its job,” reflects Simon Needham. “People have responded really well to it. They’ll call us up and say: ‘Hey, you know this stock or this print production technique that you’ve used on this page, or the way you’ve done that? We would like to talk to you about perhaps bringing some of that through’,” he explains.
“What we’re actually doing with Noise is connecting with owners, or very wealthy individuals, or parts of groups of businesses, who have a decision-making role within their business,” he adds. “If they’re interested in our style of work on an artistic level, then maybe they’ll also be interested in talking to us on a commercial level too.”
124 AMELIA’S MAGAZINE LAUNCHES
Beginning in 2004, Amelia Gregory runs the illustration phenomenon Amelia’s Magazine, printing 10 issues and collaborating with an entire network of up-and-coming illustrators. With a background in fashion and culture, Gregory takes the magazine where she wants it to go, giving illustrators a theme and then printing the best work, alongside articles about underground bands, new designers and more. It was never about the money, and in 2009, after a particularly sparkly issue, she changes her focus to the web and bigger publications like Amelia’s Illustration Anthology.
125 NEVILLE BRODY SPEAKS
We catch up with the great Neville Brody in issue 159 of Computer Arts in March 2009. He tells us about consumerism and Thatcherism, and Research Studios’ accounts with Dom Prignon, Kenzo and Lamborghini as well as redesigning The Times. He also talks about how he’s just enrolled on a beginner’s life drawing course at St Martins.