Thanks for subscribing.

Throughout my career, the vast majority of the design projects I have been involved in and the associated interactions with clients have been positive experiences--in most cases very positive. (Not bragging here, you won't be a designer very long if they aren't.)

Except for one area: when I volunteer/donate my services.

It dawned on me recently, that a much higher percentage of projects that I think of negatively are those in which I was volunteering my services.

I'm thinking of writing an article on the subject because I am guessing I am not alone and I am developing some reasons why I think it happens. Question: Have you had a similar, overall experience?

Be well, Chuck

Have you seen my InDesign Ideabook?
315 template files in 19 different categories -- Everything from brochures, newsletters, and direct mail to packaging, calendars, and books (one CD works with both Mac and PC). Use two or three files and you'll pay for the entire book and disc...

For Adobe InDesign  Here 

For QuarkXPress  Here 
Design is an expression of organization

Casey Neistat is a filmmaker and THIS is where he works-proof that design is (in many cases) an expression of organization.

Casey Neistat's studio from Wired...  Here

Neistat takes us on a tour of the studio (great stuff)...  Here

About Neistat...  Here

Learn virtually any software program...

I recommend A huge library of top-quality, design-oriented tutorials. Click here for a 7-day free trial.   Here  

Where are the sign painters?

Walk down the streets of most cities and towns and, if you've been around for a while, you'll note that something significant missing: hand-painted signs. If there are signs at all, they are typically flat, bland, digitally manufactured banners that seem to drone names and marketing messages in monotone.

I'm not saying all banners and vinyl lettering are bad, I'm just saying a sign painted by a talented sign painter has more soul.

So I was excited to receive a book from Princeton Architectural Press titled, Sign Painters by Faythe Levine and Sam Mancon. It offers a fascinating look at the craft of sign painting and features interviews with some of the most storied sign painters working today.

It is the prelude to the Sign Painter movie which is now touring to selected venues around the world.

The movie trailer for Sign Painters...  Here

The movie website provides a schedule of where and when you can see the movie...  Here

Sign Painters on Instagram...  Here

Buy the book: Sign Painters by Faythe Levine and Sam Mancon...  Here 

An interesting use of 3D in illustration

I thought this illustration was of note, first because it's ann interesting illustration, and secondly because of the use of 3D.

Welcome to the jungle...  Here

The I Love Dust website...  Here

If you use this link to buy your type from, you won't pay any more but I'll get a commission. And you know what THAT means: My own island! Or, a paddle for the canoe. Here 


A snapshop of the diverse, multifaceted world of typography

Lettering artist and designer Gunnlaugur SE Briem invited a long list of "letterforms practitioners" to contribute work samples and notes to The Briem Report, Letterforms 2012.

As he explains, the 250-page book, deals with everything from pyrography and stonecarving to low-resolution hinting and handwriting therapy.

More than anything, it will give you an idea of the many, many angles from which artists, designers, and technicians approach the world of typography.

The Briem Report, Letterforms 2012...  Here

The ATypI (Association Typographique Internationale) website...  Here 

Another of Briem's books: Improve Your Handwriting...  Here 

Finding your place as a designer

This is a great example of how a designer with a specific set of skills has turned his passion into a business. Simon Vernon combines his artistic skills for drawing and painting with his understanding of surveying and mapping to create, print, and package illustrated maps of estates.

I don't know if he thinks of himself as a designer, but you can certainly see all of a designer's skills at work.

An overview of his practice...  Here 

I purchased Canon EOS Rebel T4i Digital Camera with 18-135mm Lens a few months ago. It's a terrific tool that I recommend heartily.  Here



A snapshot of graphics and imagery preceding World War II

I got started on this little design journey when I came across a wonderful illustrated map titled, "A cartograph of Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay, Golden Gate International Exposition."

Which led me to an excellent Wikipedia article about the event and an immense collection images and print materials compiled by photographer and urban explorer, Jon Haeber.

The exposition or "World's Fair," was going on at the same time as the 1939 World's Fair in New York and its primary purpose was, as I understand it, to showcase west coast products and companies.

I'm finding it provides lots of interesting retro design inspiration.

The 1939 World's Fair picture map...  Here 

An immense collection of print materials from the Exposition...  Here 

An antiquated film snapshot of 1939 California and the exposition from the Prelinger Archives... Here 

Haha... I am not an absolutist, but I think we can all agree on this: 
NEVER use this headline:
"(Product/service/organization) Means Business"

Seems like I see it every couple of weeks.

Cool graphic design tool: 
Type in text and preview it in all the typefaces loaded on your computer...  Here

Making light of someone's religion is not a good marketing strategy...

Someone sent me a link to a software service today with the request that I include it on my resources page.

I won't embarrass them here by telling you the business they represent but I will tell you it uses a "monk" theme--little cartoons of monks in orange garb, using words such as, "sanctuary," "preaching," mantra," and so on.

It is, to me, a foolish way to market a product. Clearly, these folks are not followers of some Eastern Orthodoxy, Buddhism, or Roman Catholicism--but, rather, of a too-clever copywriter.

I know I appear censorious on this, but why would you intentionally invent and build a brand that is guaranteed to offend some sector your potential audience?

I find it curious that some who have made a choice not to believe in any of the world's great religions often have a need to belittle those who do. Forget that it is at best in poor taste and at worst mean--instead think of nothing more than the practical ramifications: That the CEO of your most sought after corporate prospect is an adherent to the religion you mock.

About this newsletter

I try to remain as objective as possible about the information I share here. Unless I tell you otherwise, I receive no compensation from the organizations and people mentioned except for occasional product samples. I am an affiliate of and -- that means, if you purchase something from them, I get a small commission. Comments? Suggestions? Write me at [email protected] -- Chuck Green