News, awards, writing and ideas

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Corporate sustainability

Old Mac Pro

As part of our concern for the environment, the future, and our corporate environmental sustainability duties, we have recycled our old Mac Pro (Early 2009) back to Apple using their Apple Recycling Programme. May 2022.

The Apple logo on the left (a black shape of an apple with a bit bitten out of it) on the right side, then a green heart drawing to the right, then a green drawing of the world
Competition entry

A new pictogram for disability and accessibility..?

We have submitted a pictogram design into the International Accessibility Symbol Design Competition 2022 organised by The International Union of Architects (UIA) and Rehabilitation International (RI). They invited submissions for a 21st century symbol of accessibility to represent their core values of rights and inclusion, equity and independence, diversity, physical and virtual accessibility for all, including people with disabilities. The person in a wheelchair is a somewhat aged and old‑fashioned view of people with disabilities, not great hey? We wonder if Otl Aicher would agree? We would like to say thanks to the people and organisations that took part in user testing, we could not have done this project without you. Winners are announced on the 18th April 2022. There is a financial prize, but also if successful, the design will be adopted by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) and used internationally, like in airports and on official signs. If you are in need of a new pictogram to represent people with disabilities, and of issues of accessibility and inclusion, contact us we have what you need. More about this project will be announced after the 18th April 2022. March 2022.

The International Union of Architects logo. The letters ‘uia’ in large bold grey lowercase sans serif letters. Then an arrow to the right that is red halfway at the top, then blue halfway at the bottom Rehabilitation International logo. The letters ‘Ri’ in large blue italic letters, then behind them a world latitude and longitude graphic design. International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) logo. The letters ‘ISO’ in large white capital letters. Then behind them a world latitude and longitude graphic design, all of this is in white on a red background
The blue disabled pictogram sign on the left with a person sitting in a wheelchair. Then a right pointing arrow to the right. Then a blue square box, to the right of this, with the text 'What should the disabled pictogram sign look like in 2022 and onwards, that reflects disability, inclusion, diversity, equity, independence, and physical and virtual accessibility? We have the answer.'

After a delay of 3 weeks after the original winners announcement date, our submission did not get an award. What would we say about the top-3 pictogram designs awarded? ‘not good’. Here are the winning entries. More about our work on this project can be seen on our Information Design webpage. May 2022.

Writing and research

Interview with Joanna Suau in the Information Design Journal, 26(2), 2021

The rise of APIs… We are delighted to announce An Interview With Joanna Suau From Infobip on the Design of Application Programming Interface (API) Documentation in the Information Design Journal, 26(2), 2021. March 2022.

Journal cover of Information Design Journal 26.2, 2021 shows a white cover side-on, with a yellow gridded graphic with green pie charts above, and the text 'idj' in large white bold letters at the top
Goodies

2 new typefaces and Typotheque’s new typeface specimen book

We were going to mention we have 2 new typefaces in the office, Arnhem Greek and Fedra Serif B, and now have reason to do so. Arnhem Greek by Type By is a good typeface for books and documents of many kinds, designed by Fred Smeijers from Belgium, then Fedra Serif B by Peter Biľak founder of Typotheque, is especially good for academic journals, and features an extensive character and symbol support, even for complex maths.

So to the reason of this news entry, indeed we did buy Fedra Serif B, however I got an SMS to say that something was coming in the post from Typotheque in the Netherlands, even though we did not order anything to come in the post, what could it be? A few days later Here: A World Poem, Typotheque’s latest typeface specimen book arrived, and we were more than delighted. It features 560 pages of typeface samples, specimens, essays, poems and much more. The cover is especially nice and the large text ‘HERE’ in capitals, is printed in a multi-coloured foiled ink or something?, that ripples and catches the light. The binding is also especially nice and precise. The book feels like 1 of the old Edition Suhrkamp Verlag books made and printed in the 1960s from Germany. Print has qualities that electronic information does not have. There are pros and cons to both printed and electronic communications… Although we still love print, even more so now because of the amount of digital pollution that is out there, and the majority of website users only use a webpage for a matter seconds, whereas a printed book is typically used for much longer lengths of time.

Thanks again Typotheque, they are doing some amazing stuff in typeface design, utilising technology and language coverage not easily found elsewhere. We really like the Manu Informal typeface from them, that is basically a handwritten typeface and not only supports Greek but has small capitals, very hard to find or maybe not available anywhere else. Bedankt (thank you in Dutch). February 2022.

Photograph from the top side-on of the front cover, shows blue cover with the word ‘HERE’ in large thin capital letters on the front A6 landscape compliments slip on light cream paper, with handwriting in blue ink which says ‘Hi Thomas, thank you very much for your order. I’m sending you our complete type catalogue. Do let me know when you would like to test any new fonts. Peter’ Typotheque square orange logo, square orange background with the letters ‘T P’ in large white capital letters on the 1st line, then below on the 2nd line, the letters ‘T Q’ in large white capital letters
Work showcase

New photographs from our 2 documentary projects

We have made available 155 photographs, mainly from our back‑catalogue from the Leicester City Centre, United Kingdom From Far Away, 2020 Onwards, and the New Walk, Leicester, United Kingdom 2020 Onwards documentary projects, covering all 4 seasons (spring, summer, autumn and winter). February 2022.

Photograph of daffodils close-up with green grass behind, then The Belmont Hotel Leicester in the background, and other high office buildings and trees in the background
Writing and research

Interview with Paul Jerome in the Information Design Journal, 26(1), 2021

We are delighted to announce that our interview An Interview With Paul Jerome From Kent County Council on Easy Read has been published in the Information Design Journal, 26(1), 2021.

Easy read is essentially information designed for people with learning difficulties, that is typically made larger in size and more blatant than typical information is, as well as making the text content easy‑to‑understand. Thanks to Paul, Patricia and Francisco. August 2021.

Journal cover of Information Design Journal 26.1, 2021 shows a white cover side-on, with a colour photograph of a health card, and the text 'idj' in large white bold letters at the top
Work showcase

Photographs of New Walk, Leicester, United Kingdom 2020 Onwards project

You can view a short press release and information about this photographic documentary project on our Medium. You can view all the photos in this documentary project on our album on Alamy, and also view our main portfolio on Alamy. July 2021.

2 circle photographs above and 2 circle photographs below, of New Walk Leicester showing various city and lanscape shots, showing people and places

Work showcase

Photographs of Leicester City Centre, United Kingdom From Far Away, 2020 Onwards project

You can view a short press release and information about this photographic documentary project on our Medium. This project features unique, unusual and hard‑to‑photograph views of Leicester, we do hope you enjoy them. You can view all the photos on our project album on Alamy, and view our main portfolio also on Alamy. July 2021.

2 circle photographs above and 2 circle photographs below, Leicester city centre showing various city and landscape shots, showing people and places

Work showcase

Slanted Magazine #36 — COEXIST

COEXIST: to live or exist together, in peace, at the same time, or in the same place. The 1st time in our lives the world is changing fundamentally. We need to rethink what all this is about. Higher, faster and further at the expense of others cannot point the way to the future. We need to question ourselves, how we want to coexist, show consideration and take a step back. The book questions topics such as climate change, political power, human rights, freedom of speech, wars and many other global issues.

Our Ban Public Smoking (Factories) environmental poster (that you can see on our Graphic Design webpage) has been showcased in Slanted Magazine #36 – COEXIST, on page 269. November 2020.

Photograph of the front cover from a side-on view, showing large black only curvy illustrations of people

Slanted logo, shows a black horizontal rectangle, with the bottom left and top right corners cut off, then the word ‘Slanted’ in large bold capital white letters on top
Writing and research

Interview with Chris Hackley on advertising and marketing

We have done a new self-initiated interview called an Interview With Professor Chris Hackley (Professor of Marketing, Royal Holloway, University of London) on the Past, Present and Future of Advertising and Marketing that is on our Medium, enjoy. November 2020.

Street photograph of a man walking along the pavement in a city, just before the new kiosk A1 InLink advertising units Medium.com logo, shows a thick serif font and says 'Medium' in black
Work showcase

London Design Festival 2020

We have been showcased on the London Design Festival 2020 freelancer portal. August 2020.

London Design Festival logo, large fat red L, D, F, 2, 0, 2, 0 letters horizontally and vertically aligned
Writing and research

2 interviews for the Information Design Journal, 25(2), 2019

We are delighted to announce that we have done 2 interviews for the Information Design Journal, 25(2), 2019.

The 1st interview is An Interview With Barbra Kingsley From Kleimann Communication Group on Information Design on all things information design and financial statement design.

The 2nd interview is An Interview With Anne-Marie Chisnall From Write on Plain English and Information Design on all things clear writing. Thanks again to Carla, Barbra and Anne-Marie. August 2020.

Journal cover of Information Design Journal 25.2, 2019 shows a white cover side-on, with a technical diagram on the front, and the text 'idj' in large white bold letters at the top
Writing and research

The Best Dutch Book Designs 2017 book review

We have reviewed the interesting The Best Dutch Book Designs 2017 yearly printed annual on our Medium. For more information about the competition visit The Best Dutch Book Designs Competition website. August 2020.

The book is photographed diagonally side-on. The cover is lime green with the title in large black text, with cut-away tabs on the outer edge. Medium.com logo, shows a thick serif font and says 'Medium' in black
Competition award

Shortlisted in the International Institute for Information Design (IIID) Awards

Our Landmark Planning 2019 Website Redesign project was shortlisted in the Corporate Design and Communications category (in the top 10 entries within this category) in the International Institute for Information Design (IIID) Awards 2020. You can read the full case study PDF. June 2020.

IIID award shortlist logo, shows a purple circle the word shortlisted in the middle
Writing and research

Micro-Typography: How to Space and Kern Punctuation Marks and Other Symbols paper

We have researched and written a paper called Micro‑Typography: How to Space and Kern Punctuation Marks and Other Symbols for Smashing Magazine. The paper expands on the issue within micro‑typography, and is a gathering of ideas and issues from past years. It is slightly technical and is of interest to typographers, typesetters, typeface designers, font engineers and software developers. There is also a live real-time micro‑typography example (see Figure 5 within the paper), so you can see exactly what the micro‑typographic spacing of punctuation marks and other associated symbols actually is. Thanks to Rachel, Iris, Erik, Roland and Jost. May 2020.

The word 'Typography' repeated in 4 columns, with various punctuation marks and symbols showing the effect of spaced and not spaced marks Smashing Magazine logo, a red rectangle box, on the left in a small white diaginal box is a white letter 's', then to the right on the 1st line is 'Smashing Magazine' and below that 'Magazine' both in white capital letters
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