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The 200 best design moments in our lifetime - part 3

Back in 1995 the first issue of Computer Arts was launched, and 17 years and 199 issues later the team compiled what they believe to be 200 of the best design moments within our lifetime.

Now brace yourselves for numbers 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. 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.

106. 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.

107. 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.

108. 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.

109. 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 risque and her breasts were removed. Ouch.

110. 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.

111. 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'.

112. 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.

113. 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.

114. 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.

115. 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.

116. 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.

117. 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.

118. 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.

119. 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.

120. 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.

121. 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'.

122. 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."

123. 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.

124. 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.

125. Computer Arts redesigns

Stepping back from its eclectic style, Computer Arts redesigns in 2009 with a cleaner, subtler layout approach driven by the Akkurat typeface. Artist Rik Oostenbroek's graphic art adorns the front cover and the focus inside turns to inspiration, technique and great design.

126. Transatlantic type triumph

Paul Barnes and Christian Schwartz are each formidable type designers on their own, but put them together as Commercial Type and they're unstoppable. With Barnes in London and Schwartz in New York, they form a creative partnership in 2004, and continue to create fonts for publications and corporations that want something unique to use in their branding work. They are named two of the 40 most influential young designers in 2006 by Wallpaper* and have created fonts like Guardian Sans, Stag and FF Bau (a digitisation of the font used by the Bauhaus movement). Their latest is the sans serif Zizou, which began life as an attempt by Schwartz to draw Antique Olive from memory.

127. The Mushroom Girls Virus Book

Released by Die Gestalten Verlag in 2005, Deanne Cheuk's book of illustration - purporting to be a book about identifying edible fungi - was a sensation. It led the way in the illustration industry with Cheuk's mixed-media approach and adept sense of colour. Now it changes hands for between £150 and £300 a copy. Computer Arts interviewed her in issue 148 in 2008.

128. Young Creative Network springs into life

When it first starts off in 2001, London-based YCN holds events and arranges educational programmes to help young creatives start their careers on the right foot. The initiative grows and grows and, in addition to supporting designers and illustrators, YCN forms its own fully fledged agency with an internal team and a network of contributors. In effect, it can show young creatives how to find jobs, help improve their skills, and actually give them work. There are still YCN exhibitions, it publishes its own quarterly magazine, and has a library full of creative books and DVDs.

129. Paula Scher and Pentagram for Windows 8

Apple might be the choice of designers, but Microsoft is a Pentagram client and Paula Scher's latest major piece of design work is the Windows 8 identity. "Your name is Windows. Why are you a flag?" she asks early in the process according to the Pentagram blog, and the waving, four-coloured flag design has given way to a flat, blue, four-pane window tilted into perspective, alongside the sans serif Windows text. It's simpler, with no shading, gradients or drop shadows, and no gel or chrome look. It's a bold step, but one that fits with the 'Metro' design vision for Windows Phone with its extremely slick interface. A classic piece of design, as ever, from Scher.

130. Hoss spanks a monkey

In 1995, designer Hoss Gifford's Flammable Jam launches a Flash game called Spank the Monkey - in which you hit an inflatable ape as fast as you possibly can with a giant cursor hand. It's a massive success and a viral hit for the agency.

131. Carson magazine or a hoax?

Followers of leading American designer David Carson grow very excited late in 2010 when rumours begin circulating that he is designing a brand new magazine called Carson. One issue did arrive, receiving a splattering of somewhat negative reviews, and it later transpires that Carson is denying all involvement in the project.

Soon after a dispute breaks out on Twitter and on certain design blogs, amplified by anxious fans who quote the unedifying argument between publisher Alex Storch and Carson via all sorts of social media channels. The same magazine is now called Untitled, and continues to publish.

132. Form and Depeche Mode

One of the many fine music packaging projects undertaken by London studio Form is the cover of Depeche Mode's 2001 album Exciter, featuring a photo of an exotic and suggestive green flower, and hand-rendered text. The album itself is raw and minimal in comparison to others released by the band, and the design seems to reflect this. Form has worked with an array of other acts including Pendulum, Pixie Lott and Girls Aloud, and has done plenty of non-music work, such as the brochure for space tourism agency Virgin Galactic.

133. Pick me up

Supporting a new wave of designer/ makers and artist/illustrators, the Pick Me Up festival holds its first annual event at Somerset House in 2010. Creatives are invited to make and sell imagery at the exhibition, and Rob Ryan sets up a studio in residence at the first event. Later participants include McBess, Jules Julien, Revenge is Sweet and Sarah Arnett.

134. The Times redesign

The multitalented Luke Prowse proves his genius working with Neville Brody at Research Studios on the 2006 redesign of The Times. After studying the development of Times Roman over the centuries, he refines the font and creates the newspaper's masthead. This helps one of the world's leading newspapers find its feet again following its shift to tabloid format.

135. By Designers for Designers

After the dotcom bomb, digital creatives Ryan Carson and Ryan Shelton found BD4D in 2001 as a way for designers to share skills and ideas. They find inspirational speakers, a venue and a sponsor for free beers. Soon they have events in London, New York and San Francisco. Carson now runs Treehouse, and Shelton founded The Noble Union.

136. Sudtipos for script fonts

2006: When it comes to script fonts, Sudtipos foundry seems to have it covered. Each of the fonts found in the Bluemlein collection is a digitised version of the calligraphic work of Charles Bluemlein originally created in the 1940s. Of course, you can get some fine display, serif, sans serif and slab fonts from Sudtipos as well. It's the first foundry of its kind in Argentina.

137. Design Museum shop rebrand

There aren't many more prestigious design briefs than being asked to create an identity for the Design Museum - the veritable Mecca of design. Spin was given the honour of rebranding the institution's shop, unveiling its work early in 2012. The previous identity was created by Build in 2007, with the logotype created by Graphic Thought Facility in 2003.

138. Siggi's Scandinavian style

Icelandic illustrator Siggi Eggertsson catapults onto the scene in 2003 with a unique way of building images from triangles and other basic shapes. Mixing modernism with Nordic traditional creativity, a raft of Scandinavian illustrators follow him into the mainstream, such as Edvard Scott (Sweden), Sanna Annukka (UK/Finland) and Janine Rewell (Finland).

139. Cinema 4D for 3D

Version three of Cinema 4D launches on the Commodore Amiga in 1995 - but capable though it is, the home computer is on the way out. A year later, C4D is ported to Windows and later arrives on the Mac. Since then it has become the tool of choice for illustrators wanting to add 3D elements.

140. Projection mapping is super good

Sometimes the simplest solutions create the most appealing visual effects. Using powerful LED projectors, French studio Superbien has been illuminating 3D geometric structures with stunning motion graphics and imagery since 2010. Incorporating some of the shapes into the graphics and using strong colours makes the effect even more intriguing to view.

141. Handmade cover for Wallpaper*

In 2010 James Joyce, Hort, Kam Tang, Anthony Burrill and Nigel Robinson all create elements for an app distributed for Wallpaper*'s handmade issue. Subscribers send in their designs created using the app, and when their mag arrives it has the bespoke image on front.

142. The Se7en title sequence

Brad Pitt, Morgan Freeman and Gwyneth Paltrow may have been the stars of 1995's Se7en, but Kyle Cooper who directs its astounding title sequence sees his actors as the 26 letters of the alphabet. He and his team hand-draw each letter and direct them through all sorts of motions, digitally and in camera, in a style that later becomes known as kinetic typography.

143. The Art of Looking Sideways

One of Britain's greatest designers, Alan Fletcher passes away in September 2006. He worked with Colin Forbes and Bob Gill in the 1960s, founding the practice that would evolve into Pentagram in 1972. His logos for Reuters and the V&A are still in use today. His 2001 book The Art of Looking Sideways analyses a huge collection of influential graphic design projects over the years.

144. Freehand 7 released

Officially called FreeHand Graphics Studio 7, Macromedia's vector graphics application is at the top of its game in 1996. Fontographer 4.1, Extreme 3D 2 and xRes come in the bundle, and clean, vector graphics become the in-look for the next decade.

145. Building Build

After nine years with tDR , Michael C. Place decides to plough his own design, illustration and typographic furrow, and sets up Build in 2001. Nokia, Sony, Getty Images and many more A-list clients have come to the studio for its instinctive approach to design.

146. 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.

147. V&A goes retail

Since 2008, the Victoria and Albert Museum's brand has become nearly as important as the museum itself. Its retail identity can now be seen in giftshops around the country, with a logotype designed through the merging of characters by Why Not Associates.

148. Modern culture with Pixelsurgeon

Providing online commentary before the word 'blogging' has really come into the vernacular, Richard May, Jason Arber and Rina Cheung cater to digital designers' tastes in art, music, film and more via their website Pixelsurgeon in 2001. The site closes in 2007.

149. The last thing you see in Düsseldorf

Arguably typographer Erik Spiekermann's most functional yet beautiful (in a modernist way) font, Info is created for use in Düsseldorf Airport's wayfinding system in 1997. The designer is effectively your guide when you arrive or depart from the city.

150. Brian Cannon, here, now

The cover art for 1997's Be Here Now, possibly the record cover that best sums up the 1990s, is designed by Brian Cannon of Microdot. He'd originally met Noel Gallagher of Oasis pre-record-deal in a lift when the guitarist had admired his Adidas trainers.

Part 1: 1-50 | Part 2: 51-100 | Part 3: 101-150 | Part 4: 151-200

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