We’re guilty. Guilty of relying on the quick and easy method of using social networking to update folks on what we’re up to. You can see the cobwebs on this very site. I don’t think we’ve updated our work section in over a year. But I can feel it in the air … 2015 will be the return of the blog and long-form reading on the web. No? Well, we’re going to attempt that when we can. Personally, I miss it. I miss putting together (and reading) content that you could spend more than 2 seconds staring at. We’ll continue to Insta-tweet, but I don’t want to rely on that …
To be honest though, we have been busy. Very thankful for that. But, now is a perfect time to wipe the dust off the site and let you guys know what we’ve been up to for the last 9 months – and we also want to share some new things we’ve got cooking.
1. Thanks to the VSCO Artist Iniative, our first documentary film about artists (specifically what drives us and connects us all) begins production in July! We will be hitting 6 cities and interviewing numerous artists from many different industries and walks of life. We’re excited to tell this story … more on that here. We’ll be documenting and journaling the entire experience on our VSCO Grid.
2. Last fall, we had the opportunity of a lifetime come our way: To re-imagine the historic Cinerama Theatre in Downtown Seattle – our favorite movie destination since we landed here in 2001. We created 2 massive murals that completely altered the corner of 4th Avenue and Lenora Street. The mural art made its way into a re-brand of the theatre, inside and out. We are currently working on our short film, ‘Re-Imagining Cinerama’ that takes a closer look at Cinerama’s grand re-opening last November – and the art that went into it. We’ll also have prints of the mural (and more Cinerama art we created) for sale when we launch the film this summer. Photos above by Benjamin Benschnieder.
3. Stack And Scare! is coming to Shanghai in a massive way. The Shanghai Times Square Mall will feature a large Stack And Scare! exhibit next month. Giant sculptures, play areas, toys, posters, etc. Curated by APPortfolio. We are very excited for this – much more info coming soon.
4. Wine Meets Design. We are thrilled to be the inaugural designers partnered up with the talented winemaker Aaron Pott for Bare Bottle’s first release. We were first approached for this project a few years back from our friends Katie and Nathan at Eight Hour Day. We’ve had a blast working with them, Marta & Josh Harding – and Corey Miller, the man who dreamed this extremely cool idea up. A quick bio from their site –
Bare Bottle curates the pairing of winemakers + designers and provides them with a blank canvas through which to create. Each unique collaboration opens a window into our makers’ creative processes, their inspirations, and their worlds.
The dedication to craft, quality and presentation comes across so clear with Bare Bottle. If you love wine … and design … it’s worth every penny. I was floored when I saw the finished shipped piece …
5. Blast Off! After a 2-year hiatus, we are back with our good friends at Sasquatch! Music Festival. We had the pleasure of creating all of the Festival art, merchandise and even the Lineup Video this year. As per usual, the lineup is amazing (Kendrick!) and happens to be going on THIS weekend. We’ll have an in-depth look into all of the assets we created (including another collaboration with Ebbets Field Flannels and Theo Chocolate) soon …
6. The amazing opportunity to illustrate my first Children’s Book came up last September. We had gotten book offers in the past, but nothing quite felt right and some of the projects just plain fizzled out. When our friends at Crossway approached me about a Bible Story by Kevin DeYoung, it was a big decision. In the end, It was a project I wanted to personally see done right … and one that I wanted to see on the shelves myself. The Biggest Story was the most intense project I’ve worked on to date, and also the most fulfilling – in ways I could never have imagined. I cannot thank Josh Dennis and Crossway enough for allowing me to run with my vision and aesthetic for Kevin’s beautifully-written book. The Biggest Story is hardbound, 10 chapters and 132 pages. Available in August and up for pre-order on Amazon now. Below are a few sample spreads from the first two chapters.
7. Our Odd Galaxy wooden toy line with Uncle Goose is finally in full production mode and will be released in the next few months. There will be 3 products to start: Cosmo Kid, Moon Rover and Lunar Rocket, each sold separately – but of course much more fun when you own all 3. We have some fun OG launch (get it?) projects that will be released around the same time, including a window display at our favorite space store …
8. Two years ago, we bought a 10-acre ranch, turned a 50-year old barn into our studio and then made a toy out of it. OK, so that’s the short version. We’ll have a nice process post on this (way over-budget and panic-attack inducing) project on our new … well, see #10. For now, you can check out some great photos of the shop by Joshua Harding over at Bare Bottle.
9. Last, but not least, we are finally working on a new website. One that we will update. One that will work nicely on your phone thing you carry with you. We promise.
Long before music and design (and almost everything else), there was … baseball.
In the eighties it was our hometown pride and joy – The Bend Bucks – who would later become the Portland Rockies. The Bucks were a single A farm club for the (now) Anaheim Angels. We’d love to hit the games with Dad and grab autographs from the retired major leaguers who were acting coaches for the team. $5 tickets and cheap popcorn didn’t hurt either.
Between Bucks games, the best movie ever created, our own little league games (where I told all my teammates that I was related to this guy), watching the Braves (lose) every waking moment on TBS and our unhealthy addiction to baseball cards (wish we still had this), there was time for little else. In 1989, our family moved to Sacramento and our love of the game got even stronger – thanks to the Giants and these guys across the bay. RIP Candlestick Park.
Fast forward 25 years later. After visiting the beautiful new Ebbets Field Flannels storefront in Seattle a few months back, we came up with a crazy idea to fuse a few of our old passions into one: Baseball, art and … people. People who are making really cool things in the world of baseball – and beyond. We even commissioned our Humble Beast bros in Portland to create some knickerbocker-era music to bring it all together. After coming up with a dream team list (and it was hard to stop at 6), we had our roster.
It’s that time of year! SDCC is upon us, so let the mayhem begin. LEGO has officially announced their exclusive minifig offerings this year, so we thought it’d be a good time to show some of the packaging and interiors we had fun with. Each clam shell opens up to reveal Batman of Zur-En-Arrh, Bard The Bowman, The Collector and Uni-Kitty in their own element. Oh, and if you have $4,000 burning a hole in your pocket … grab one of ours from last year with some guy’s name scribbled on it. Thanks to our AD’s Joseph Galluccio and Jennifer Healy! Happy collecting.
Is there still a role for designers in the music industry? We’re honored to be amongst 7 studios interviewed and featured in IdN’s Music Graphic issue.
Recorded music has always been packaged, from the very earliest days when wax cylinders came in cardboard tubes, and has therefore always involved designers. In the palmy days of vinyl LPs with sometimes stunning cover art and often erudite liner notes, the presentation was almost as important as the product.
But with the industry morphing so rapidly into the field of digital-download delivery, where do the graphics come in now? This is a burning question for all those working in the area of visually representing music. To see what their answers are, read this feature story, which solicits the views of seven specialist music designers.
Featuring: Telegramme Studio | Invisible Creature, Inc. | IWant Design | Daniel Reed | Matteo Meta | Leif Podhajsky | Giottographica
Comic-Conners! Head over to the LEGO booth and check out the FREE 2013 SDCC Exclusive Superhero Minifigures! We had the pleasure of designing and illustrating the packaging, 2 for Marvel (Spiderman & Spiderwoman) and 2 for DC (Superman & Green Arrow). Each carrier folds out to create an action-packed city backdrop for your Superhero. From what we’ve heard, these go pretty fast – so Tweet or Instagram us if you grab one! Gigantic thanks to Scott Decoteau and the team at LEGO for the super (get it?) fun project.
We’re excited to reveal our new cover for Minorville, the upcoming album from Nashville’s finest: Derek Minor. With the help of Curtis Clark (or ‘Dad’, as we like to call him), we designed this from the ground up in approx. 2 weeks. With over 100 feet of basswood and baltic birch, Dad took our design and created an entire city in 50 hours. Each structure arrived safely in Seattle, ready to be constructed in the shape of Derek’s profile. When we were initially presented with the challenge of creating this album cover, this was the first concept we pitched – Many thanks to Derek and Reach Records for sending us off and running. Stay tuned for a full comprehensive “Making Of” film coming in the next few weeks, but for now – enjoy the teaser (Processed using VSCO film emulation):
Our latest product for Target is in stores now … and it’s a fun one. Captain Bullseye’s Build-A-Plane! Gift Card is a whopping 21 pieces of snap-together awesomeness. Complete with accents of metallic silver, a spinning propeller and a display stand that doubles as a cloud/Gift Card holder. See more here and purchase here. As always, big thanks to our A.D.’s Ted Halbur and Brian Holt. You are now free to move about the toy shelf.
We love our clients. We love Lego. So why not combine the two? For our annual Client Holiday gift this year, we decided to design a custom Eye Creature Lego kit. Edition of 6 sets. 444 pieces. 4 instruction booklets. 8 different mouth combinations – and a hinged top that allows the owner to store all kinds of fun items (as shown below). We even found 2 extremely cute kids from 1972 in my house that wanted to participate in the box design. Disclaimer: This product is NOT affiliated with Lego, folks – this was a gift. Oh, enough already. Check out how we made it below:
Our friends Klaus & Erik over at Toth Construction commissioned us to design a set of wooden architectural nesting blocks for their top tier clients this holiday season. Each hand-signed and numbered set includes a sliding laser-etched Russian birch wood lid and 19 individual sugar maple blocks. Special thanks to Jonathan Cowles over at Patronus Design for meticulously handling the production of each set. We also collaborated with Rachel Brandzel to create hand-made letterpressed cards to accompany each box. Oh, and do yourself a favor by perusing one of Toth’s latest works of art, designed by Jim Olson.
The Holidays! Drawing! Toys! Cars! Dogs! Flying goats! Some of our very favorite things are all wrapped up in our latest Gift Card for Target, Bullseye’s Draw & Go. Unfold the map, flip the switch and watch Bullseye cruise along! Or better yet, turn the map over and draw your own track (using the complimentary marker) – Bullseye follows along the path you’ve created! Pretty cool, right? To see him in action, check out our latest Unboxing episode, embedded above. Extra special thanks to Ted Halbur, Brian Holt, Brian Bennett and Kelly Gray at inHouse for the amazingly fun project. Grab one (or ten) here.
Congrats to Kendrick Lamar on the success of his epic new LP ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city‘, out now. We worked closely with Kendrick to bring to life his vision for the album art. In stores and on iTunes now.
Here’s our cover for Lecrae’s much-anticipated new album Gravity. We’ve been fans of what Reach Records has been doing for years – so we’re pretty excited to be part of this record. And Church Clothes has been on repeat in the studio since it dropped.
We’re excited to announce ‘Unboxing‘, a new video series where we open, unpack and showcase the latest products we’ve worked on. First up: Our Hexapillar Gift Card for Target, another fun project from the creative folks at inHouse. We had loads ‘o fun creating Hexapillar and as you can tell, the metamorphosis was successful.
If you have a son between the ages of 4 and 10, you probably know all about Hexbug. We’ve had the Nano habitat fired up at our place for awhile, so when our friends at Target asked if we’d like to design our own, my son (and his dad) gave an ecstatic and audible thumbs up. The Hexapillar Gift Card goes from caterpillar to butterfly in seconds flat and comes alive with one flip of the switch. In stores now. See it a tad larger here.
As always, extra big high-fives to our A.D.’s Ted Halbur and David Ledsinger for making this all happen.