Friday, December 23, 2005

Creative Latitude Article: Designers Who Blog

Adventures in Blogging and “Design” Inspiration were recently mentioned in a new Creative Latitude article spotlighting Designers Who Blog.

From the article:

"The Xmas issue features blogs and bloggers who have been in Cat's life for the past years and more. The majority below are long time friends (what better way to celebrate Christmas?) and those who have touched Creative Latitude in a positive way. The criteria is simple, they have contributed to the design industry in a tangible way, and have not been featured in previous Cat's fancies."

Designers who blog has been listed in HOW top ten sites to see on the internet, and a mention in IF - Top Ten Design Blogs for 2005.

Click on the link provided above to check out the article in it's entirety.

Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 18, 2005


It's been a while since I've participated in Illustration Friday. I love the concept though, and hope to become more involved with it in the coming year. Hope you enjoy!

Click on the image for a larger view.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Chase your holiday blues away HERE!

I've recently come across a plethora of holiday related time-wasting online activities. Click on the link below each image to be directed to the site. Michelle and I especially enjoyed this first one. ;)

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Adventures In Blogging Joins ORblogs

ORblogs is a directory of Oregon bloggers, weblogs written by Oregonians. ORblogs gathers excerpts of alternative local news, commentary, and photography from the Oregon weblogs community. Interesting, profound and bizarre stuff, check it out here.

Designers Who Blog Makes HOW Top Ten!

Belated congratulations to my friend Cat Morley of Katz-I Design, Creative Latitude and The newly formed PGDA for being recognized recently by HOW magazine for her Designers Who Blog Site. It's a great website that highlights graphic designers, photographers, illustrators etc., who blog, offering links and a brief summary description. Cat has done a great job in compiling all of these great sites together in one place. Designers Who Blog offers links to both this blog and my “Design” Inspiration blog as well as many others.

Congratulations again Cat!

HOW Top Ten

Friday, December 09, 2005

Science ran headlong into society in 2005

Ran across this article today on MSNBC, and thought I'd share, the original article is available at the link at the bottom. I've always enjoyed the year in review informational articles, shows me how much I missed out on. There are some great links in this article, be sure to check them out.

Science ran headlong into society in 2005
Year-end reviews focus on cloning and climate, evolution and epidemics

By Alan Boyle
Science editor
Updated: 5:47 p.m. ET Dec. 8, 2005

As 2005 winds down to a close, scientists and editors are putting together their lists of the year's top science stories, and it’s clear that one major theme is the intersection — or downright car crash — between science and sociopolitical stands.

After all, this was the year when a top scientist was celebrated for cloning a dog and creating tailor-made embryonic stem cells — and then wound up hospitalized for exhaustion, amid a raging debate over bioethics. This was the year in which there was not just one, but two sets of hearings that merited comparison to the "monkey trial" of 1925. This was the year in which members of Congress took positions on brain death and when every month seemed to bring some new worry over severe weather or a global pandemic.

The developments of the past year show that the "accepted wisdom" on science isn't as quickly or as widely accepted as perhaps it once was — partly because of a skeptical political climate, and partly because the Internet provides wider access for dissenting views. Those societal challenges are sparking the rise of a new breed of scientists: media-savvy folk who aren't afraid to join the fray themselves.

One of those folk is Gavin Schmidt, a climate researcher at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies as well as the founder of the RealClimate Web log. In its year-end roundup, Seed magazine selected Schmidt as one of 15 "icons" who has shaped the global conversation about science over the past year.

Schmidt told that the RealClimate blog "seemed like such a perfect fit with the kinds of things that I was having to talk about with journalists and friends and other people who aren't necessarily scientists."

Schmidt and his co-bloggers get into the nitty-gritty of climate research, interacting earnestly with fans as well as foes in long strings of reference-rich commentary. It's not an approach meant to attract a mass audience or stir a political movement — and Schmidt doesn't mean it to be.

"What I think is more doable and more achievable is getting to the point where the media and maybe politicians would have a more direct line to what the scientific consensus on an issue is, or whether there's a consensus at all. Sometimes there is no consensus," he said. "But where there is a consensus, I think it's important that the media be able to deal with that in a way that takes you out of the 'on the one side ... on the other side' style of journalism, because I think that confuses the public to a large degree."

21st-century scientists
That interplay between science and society is what Seed was going after in its year-end review, said Adam Bly, the magazine's founder and editor-in-chief. Among the other honorees are Jonathan Farley, a mathematician and counterterrorism consultant; Alex Deghan, a biologist who worked as an adviser in post-Saddam Iraq; and science-minded creative types like novelist Carrie Tiffany and artist Justine Cooper.

"The people we selected as the revolutionary minds of 2005 are not just scientists in a 20th-century sense," Bly told "They're connecting their ideas and their research with the broader public more so than might be the case with a 20th-century definition."

The social implications of science also played a big part in the selection of the Scientific American 50 — a year-end roundup of notables assembled by the 160-year-old magazine.

"We're trying to recognize the people and the organizations that we think are showing real leadership in advancing technology in constructive ways," said John Rennie, Scientific American's editor-in-chief, John Rennie.

Business, policy and research
The selections span the worlds in business, policy and research. In two of those three categories, the top leaders are being recognized for their contributions to the infrastructure of innovation, rather than scientific breakthroughs in the traditional sense:

  • Google founders Larry Page and Sergei Brin were recognized as business leaders of the year for revolutionizing information technology — and profiting richly in the process.
  • Norwegian engineer/entrepreneur Fred Kavli was named policy leader of the year for starting up the Kavli Foundation, which funds basic research as well as a trio of $1 million science prizes.
  • The other top honoree could well serve as the poster child for this year's clash between science and society: South Korean stem cell researcher Woo Suk Hwang. When you consider the top science-related controversies of 2005, the ups and downs surrounding Hwang, Scientific American's research leader of the year, would have to rank at the top.

    Until a couple of months ago, Woo Suk Hwang was riding a wave of adulation — and at times scientific envy — over his lab's achievements in the field of stem cells and cloning. Trained as a veterinarian, Hwang led the research team behind the first cloned dog, an Afghan hound named Snuppy.

    But his work with human embryonic stem cells created even more buzz: Back in 2004, Hwang's team announced that they had successfully brought a cloned human embryo far enough along to extract stem cells — the type of cell that has the most capacity to regenerate worn-out or damaged body tissues.

    In May of this year, Hwang announced that he was able to go even further by customizing stem cells with the genetic coding from donors who suffered from spinal-cord injury or other maladies. The cloning achievement heightened the debate over U.S. competitiveness in stem cell research, as well as ethical questions raised by the prospect of human cloning.

    Even then, there was yet another ethical issue hanging in the background: allegations that some of Hwang's female subordinates had contributed their own eggs to the research effort. That practice would be frowned upon by most scientists, because of fears about subtle coercion to go through a procedure that carries some medical risk.

    Finally, in November, Hwang's chief American collaborator broke with him over what he saw as an ethical breach. South Korean journalists confirmed that junior researchers had indeed donated eggs, though apparently without Hwang's knowledge. It also came out that some women had been paid for their donated eggs — a practice that wasn't illegal at the time but has since been banned in Korea.

    Hwang was devastated by the disclosures. After a round of apologies and resignations, he checked himself into a Seoul hospital this week to be treated for exhaustion.

    Two fronts in the culture war
    The turnabout sparked "we-told-you-so" comments from the opposing side in the culture war over human embryonic stem cell research. Meanwhile, many South Koreans saw the criticism of Hwang as an attack on their own culture. Hundreds attended pro-Hwang rallies outside Korean news outlets, and more than 1,000 women signed up to donate their own eggs in a sign of solidarity.

    This week, Scientific American's John Rennie sounded a bit regretful about the fact that the controversy over Hwang broke just as the magazine naming him research leader of the year was going to press. "There's exactly the kind of problem you didn't want to have happen," he told

    For good or ill, the controversy seems likely to spark a new round of scrutiny over stem cell research, Rennie said.

    "What's interesting is that there's a real division of opinion about what all this means," he said. "It shows that we probably need much more international agreement on what the standards for conducting this research are going to be."

    The debates surrounding stem cells and cloning weren't the only ones where science ran up against society and politics, of course. The list could extend from A to Z — say, from AIDS to zero population growth. But if we're talking about 2005, these four issues could well round out the year's top five science-related social controversies:

  • Darwin vs. design: A federal trial in Pennsylvania serves as a forum for the debate over whether public-school science classes should carve out a place for intelligent design, or ID — the idea that some aspects of biology are so complex that they are best explained as the handiwork of a designer. Mainstream scientists make a good showing, and pro-ID school board members are voted out (sparking some doomsaying from televangelist Pat Robertson. Meanwhile, mainstream scientists decide to stay away from the Kansas Board of Education's hearings on teaching evolution — and the board gives a statewide nod to ID.
  • Wondering about wild weather: As hurricanes pummel the American Southeast, some scientists claim a linkage between global warming and storm intensity, while others scoff. Also during 2005, the Kyoto accord on greenhouse-gas emissions takes effect, while the United States goes its own way. By the end of the year, even some of those who signed the Kyoto pact are having second thoughts about following through on the process.
  • How far will bird flu fly? A deadly strain of influenza makes the jump from birds to humans, killing scores of people in Asia and setting off alarm bells around the world. Public health officials say the United States is unprepared for a pandemic, but they are also concerned about unjustified panic. Will the crisis sizzle or fizzle? Stay tuned in 2006.
  • The soul of the brain: The plight of long-comatose patient Terri Schiavo sparks a national debate over end-of-life issues. Scientists use brain-scanning technology to link abstract thought to measurable brain chemistry and blood flow. Some researchers are even implanting human neurons in mouse brains. All these advances potentially raise questions about what it means to be "brain-dead," and what it means to be a thinking human.
  • © 2005 MSNBC Interactive

    © 2005


    Monday, November 21, 2005


    The new AT&T logo was unveiled today to the general public. It's already creating quite a stir within the design community. AT&T's recent merger with SBC( Southwestern Bell Corporation) brought about the recent logo transformation.

    Click here to view the official press release.

    A few tidbits from that press release:

    "The revitalized mark symbolizes these attributes — innovation, integrity, quality, reliability and unsurpassed customer care," Whitacre added. "Our customers know that we're focused on keeping our promises, committed to operating honestly, and dedicated to bringing them new products that make a difference in their lives."

    The new logo reinvigorates the AT&T globe — one of the most recognized corporate symbols in the world. The new globe is three-dimensional, representing the expanding breadth and depth of services that the new AT&T family of companies provides to customers, as well as its global presence.

    Transparency was added to the globe to represent clarity and vision. Lowercase type is now used for the "AT&T" characters because it projects a more welcoming and accessible image. The core of the new logo remains blue because both the SBC and AT&T brands are strongly associated with that color. The overall design more accurately represents the company that is leading the industry in delivering best-in-class services to consumers and business professionals.

    The logo was designed by Interbrand.

    For a more in-depth discussion regarding the design communities "take" on the new logo, click here or here.

    Click here for a great evolutionary factsheet charting the evolution of both logo brands.

    And this is another great link that offers a review of the new logo.

    Friday, November 18, 2005

    Setting Yourself Apart from Other Designers

    Came across this article recently, thought there was some sound advice worth sharing.

    Original Source:

    Setting Yourself Apart from Other Designers
    by Derald Schultz

    Setting yourself apart from the graphic design herd is a very worthwhile goal, and one that has many personal and professional rewards. It requires an honest assessment of yourself, a willingness to step outside your comfort zone, and a consistent desire to develop yourself and your business with a sense of passion and flexibility. Let's take a look closer look and map out a strategy.

    Know Thyself
    Be honest with yourself. How much raw talent do you really possess? Creativity, like works of art, are subject to the tastes and preferences of the audience, but in a general sense you should realistically know where you fall. Ask your peers where they think you are as far as talent. Preface it by asking for an honest opinion of your strengths and weaknesses. You have to know where to grow so you can focus on those areas.

    To borrow a phrase from the Monty Python film, The Life of Brian, "Yes, we are all individuals." You have a unique blend of talents, abilities and experiences; you need to define them. You may be talented at graphic design, but what else are you good at in related fields that could make you a far better designer? A passion for photography, creative writing or an unusually high ability in color and composition are just a few. Any of these add value, so invest the time and energy to develop them further.

    Unrelated fields can also boost your talent from an informational or inspirational standpoint. You may love reading fiction, have an affinity for grammatical perfection (I envy you) or a love for a particular hobby or sport. I happen to love history, current events, jogging and jet skiing (the stand up model). Having a broad scope of knowledge to tap into is a great formula for intelligent concept development. You have to be "in the know" not only with your clients industry, but the world as a whole. Jogging and jet skiing is such a liberating experience. I am free to let my mind wander without the interruption of phones and emails, and I have had some of my best “design epiphanies” on roadsides and lakes. Sitting in front of a computer is the worst place to be for brainstorming.

    Experiences define who you are and influence your perspective on the world. Where you grew up, your cultural background and all the things you hold in your memory play into everything you design. Remember everything you experience today will effect what you design tomorrow, so go to plays, visit art exhibits, see movies and absorb the world around you. Finally, analyze and critique everything you see and experience in life.

    Playing it Safe Gets You Nowhere
    Taking risks is one of life's greatest joys and can be the first step to success or failure. I believe that success can even be found in failure. To set yourself apart you will have to develop a good set of stretch marks personally and professionally. I remember waiting in the conference room of an international company that needed a media kit for prospective customers. I was sitting there thinking that I was way over my head being here and I said to my partner, “If they ask us to do something I have no experience in I'll just say, that's not a problem.” I think the third or fourth time I said it she kicked me under the table and gave me a “what are you doing?!” kind of stare. In the end it was successful, but it required a lot of effort on my part. I had to learn unfamiliar software and solve problems in a medium I had no previous experience with. Had it been a failure I still would have the knowledge I gained and a greater desire to succeed the next time.

    The same can work if you are an in-house designer or work for a design firm. Take time outside the work environment to learn more about your profession. Becoming more familiar with the operation system and software as well as keeping up with the latest design trends benefits you and your employer, and will help you rise above your coworkers.

    The Costs and Rewards of Rising Above the Crowd
    There is a trend in our society toward conformity and what is best for the group, instead of celebrating individual achievement. From grading students in groups to not keeping score on the soccer field. Trust me, the referees may not be keeping score, but the parents and kids sure are. We all have a natural desire to compare and compete with each other. As the saying goes, "the only unforgivable sin in life is success." Setting yourself apart will lead them to speak and act negatively toward you. It usually says more about the person doing it than it does about you.

    Another cost is the time and effort you invest in your clients, and this has a far greater priority and impact if you are an independent designer. Your responsibility is to guide and educate each client as you go through the creative process. It also means you will have to put a lot more effort into being clear and concise about the business end of design. It is vital to you and your client that you write clear contracts, explain additional charges before they occur, and provide the best customer service possible. That means returning calls and emails when it's not convenient, extra meetings to explain your concepts and meeting unreasonable deadlines. Your goal is to provide a level of service unlike the designers around you. Your reward will be the coveted "referral". You won't have to grab for the brass ring...
    it will be handed to you!

    In the End
    Developing a unique set of talents, abilities and business skills will eventually get you noticed and raise you to a level of success that will be measured in personal satisfaction, a higher position and more money if you are an employee, or more lucrative projects if you are independent. In the end, intelligence and energy are the two biggest qualities for success and the keys to ultimately rising above the crowd. It makes no difference whether you are a designer or a doughnut maker. It works for everyone. Now get started!

    I have a list of attributes I keep above my computer to remind me what I need to be each day to reach my personal and professional goals.

    My "Setting Yourself Apart" List
    • Be honest
    • Be friendly
    • Be positive
    • Be focused
    • Be intelligent
    • Be respectful
    • Be persevering
    • Be sales-minded
    • Have a sense of humor
    • Listen more than speaking
    • Be different than everyone else
    • Do not take rejection personally
    • I am an intelligent colleague who is here to offer help
    • Have an engaging conversational tone
    • Be relaxed
    • Speak clearly and concisely
    • Don't use slang or profanity with clients or vendors
    • Don't communicate political or religious views in business
    • Don't hesitate or procrastinate
    • Set goals
    • Keep learning
    • Be friendly, firm and fair in all your business activities.

    About the Author
    Derald Schultz is the founder and principal of Mediarail Design, Inc. His company provides creative services for print and web media to clients across the country. Mediarail Design also provides prepress and printing services. He can be contacted at 678-985-9981 or via email.

    Derald is also the contributing news and articles editor at Creative Latitude.

    © 2004 Derald Schultz, Mediarail Design, Inc.

    Monday, November 14, 2005

    Tribute to The Shadow

    I've been a huge fan of old time radio for many years. The Shadow has been at the forefront of my favorites list since the beginning because of my own father's love for the character. The memories he often shared of listening to those radio programs in his youth were probably what sprouted my own love for the genre.

    The Shadow
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

    The Shadow was best known as the hero (or anti-hero) of a long-running network radio show and pulp magazine. Later, he was featured in comic books, television and motion pictures. The voice of the Shadow was heard for the first time on July 31, 1930.

    The Shadow was originally the announcer of the radio show, Detective Stories, whose plots were taken from a pulp magazine of the same title published by Street and Smith Publications in the 1930s. During this period, the Shadow was played first by James LaCurto, then by Frank Readick. The radio show was intended to boost circulation of the Detective Stories magazine, but it backfired on the producers. Listeners found the announcer much more memorable than the radio stories themselves, and flocked to newsstands demanding issues of "The Shadow Magazine", which did not exist. Street & Smith were smart enough to respond to the demand, and they hurriedly commissioned Walter B. Gibson to start writing stories about The Shadow for a new magazine. Gibson wrote almost all of the more than 300 Shadow stories over a twenty-year period--about one novel-length story per month--under the pen name of Maxwell Grant.

    Gibson's ingenious characterization of the Shadow lay in adopting elements usually applied to evil and sinister villains, and instead giving them to his hero crimefighter. Thus we have a figure in black, working by night, breaking and entering in the interests of justice, terrifying criminals and finally gunning them down. The Shadow was truly a noir superhero.

    The Shadow evolved somewhat over his popular lifetime. In the magazines, he was always an elusive crimefighter who masked his features under a slouch hat and black cape. Originally, though, he was "shadowy" because of his skill at concealing himself and hiding in the shadows. Later, and in his radio shows, he was genuinely invisible because "while travelling in the Orient he learned the mysterious power to cloud men's minds, so they could not see him." (Most have assumed this power was hypnotism, while some have argued for Qi.)

    In the original pulp series his real identity was Kent Allard, famous aviator, and "Lamont Cranston" was merely his most common disguise. In the radio series this was changed, and "Lamont Cranston, handsome young man-about-town" became the real identity of the Shadow.

    The first radio show featuring the Shadow as an adventure character aired on the Mutual Radio Network on September 26, 1937. The catch phrase of the radio show, which has become a part of American culture, was a deep, sepulchral voice intoning, "Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!" followed by eerie laughter.

    While the Shadow for the new series was played by Orson Welles, the signature line was spoken by the previous radio Shadow, Frank Readick (using a water glass held next to his mouth for echo). Other actors who played the role over the years included Bill Johnstone, Brett Morrison (the longest tenure, with ten years in two separate runs), John Archer, and Steve Courtleigh.

    Apart from a syndicated summer series in 1938, the Shadow was a Sunday afternoon fixture for Mutual until December 26, 1954. The Shadow Magazine ended with the summer 1949 issue, although Gibson wrote three new "official" stories between 1963 and 1980.

    It has been suggested that the modern superhero concept owes much of its origin to The Shadow. In particular, Batman shares many similarities with the original superhero noir. In fact, one of the reasons it was decided that Batman would not carry a sidearm was that he would look too much like the Shadow to be seen shooting a gun.


    The character has been depicted in comic books several times. The Shadow was first depicted in comics by Vernon Greene in 1938. The most acclaimed depiction was in the 1970s Shadow comic written by Dennis O'Neil and Mike Kaluta published by DC Comics. Other noteworthy Shadow comics from DC were created by Howard Chaykin, Andy Helfer and Kyle Baker, and Gerard Jones and Eduardo Barreto.

    The character has been adapted for film numerous times. The movie The Shadow Strikes was released in 1937, and starred Rod Larocque in the title role. Larocque returned to the following year in International Crime, although in this version "The Shadow" was merely a radio gimmick. A serial starring Victor Jory and two short subjects starring Kane Richmond were each made in the 1940s. An interesting fact is that Richmond's Shadow wore a black face-mask similar to the type worn by the serial hero 'The Masked Marvel'.

    A 1994 feature film version of The Shadow, starring Alec Baldwin, recast the story yet again. In this version, Lamont Cranston was a disaffected veteran of The Great War (World War I) who drifted through Asia and ultimately became a brutal warlord and opium smuggler. Cranston was then kidnapped by a Tibetan order of monks and brought to their monastery. A tulku, their leader, recognizing the power of harnessing Cranston's inner darkness, reformed and trained him to use that darkness against evil rather than for it. Cranston learned how to confuse and control the minds of others, particularly how to become invisible except for his shadow. His nemesis in the film was an evil warlord and fellow telepath named Shiwan Khan, the last descendant of Genghis, played by John Lone. Cranston's lover and partner-in-crimefighting, Margo Lane, was played by Penelope Ann Miller. The film was intended to launch a new franchise, but was commercially unsuccessful and no series resulted.

    Dark Horse Comics published three mini-series based on the movie's version of the character. It also published a two-part team-up between The Shadow and Doc Savage, another well-known pulp hero.

    The Shadow has been adapted into the Wold Newton family.

    An analogue of The Shadow, Bret Leather, The Spider, also shows up in Warren Ellis' Planetary series as a member of Doc Brass' (Doc Savage) group of superheroes.

    For a link to the original Wikipedia article, click here.

    Other great Shadow related links you should definitely click on:

    And, for your listening pleasure, I've uploaded one of my own MP3 files of The Shadow radio program for you to download. Click here.


    Saturday, November 12, 2005

    Roseburg Native Brings Graphic Design Business Home


    Contact: Jeff Andrews, Owner
    Jeff Andrews Design
    Office (541) 673-4772
    Cell (541) 680-8290

    Roseburg Native Brings Graphic Design Business Home

    Roseburg, OR – “One split second, that’s all it takes,” says graphic designer Jeff Andrews of the aptly named Jeff Andrews Design. “A potential customer will take one second to make a decision about your business based on your logo. They will judge your value, quality and professionalism based on the image you present.”

    Businesses in the Roseburg area who want that split second edge no longer have to rely on homemade solutions, favors from relatives or pricey ad agencies. Jeff Andrews Design, a highly-creative design studio for small to large businesses, has recently moved here from Medford to offer affordable yet high-quality design for Roseburg businesses. Owner Jeff Andrews grew up in Roseburg, and played Little League and basketball at Green Elementary School. “I was born here, my roots are here, and my family is here. I feel a special commitment to the community of Roseburg to give something back. I love this town,” Jeff says. Educated at the Art Institute of Seattle, Jeff has successfully practiced graphic design over the last 10 years in Washington, Colorado and Oregon (most recently in Medford), before settling in his hometown to set up shop.

    Medford-area church Central Point Assembly was one of the design company’s recent clients. Jeff Andrews Design provided them with a whole new identity, including a revamped logo, business cards, letterhead and envelopes. Other Oregon clients include the Marist High School Outdoor Adventure Program (Eugene), Kidsfoot Activewear (Roseburg) and Oregon Youth Ministries (Salem). Jeff is most proud of the work he’s done for Medford’s Bethel Church, redesigning the logo for the church itself, and also helping to brand various ministries within the church, including the kid’s church and youth group, Dividing Line Youth Ministries.

    “Jeff Andrews Design is an effective and efficient business to work with. Their work is excellent, and their service is very personable. They gave us the look we needed,” comments Pastor Ryan Motsinger of Dividing Line Youth Ministries.

    Although Jeff Andrews Design specializes in Oregon businesses, they have worked with clients across the country. “Jeff is very creative, patient and easy to work with. I would highly recommend his work to anyone,” states Brooke Martin of the Pennsylvania-based company National Communications Group. “I can’t believe how many compliments we’ve gotten on our new logo and our new look,” Brooke adds.

    Jeff Andrews Design works side-by-side with small businesses to aid them in developing a new logo or updating a tired old one. They strive to provide visually-stimulating, conceptually-driven design work with a personal, hometown approach. Businesses love the design firm’s comprehensive approach: by researching and responding to the client’s vision, message, goals and target audience, this hard-working graphics company produces top-quality work that best serves their client’s design needs. Jeff Andrews Design is a full-service graphic design studio offering expertise in business identity and logo design. They also do flyers, posters, brochures, illustrations, advertising and website design. For more information, contact Jeff Andrews at (541) 673-4772 or (541) 680-8290. Or e-mail at Find them on the web at

    Jeff has seen the effectiveness of good graphic design and the damage that bad design can inflict on a business. “Poor design tells customers you don’t care about quality. It can create a bad first impression. A professional, memorable, timeless logo can do wonders for your business, and the return on your investment is immeasurable.”

    Press release appears on PRWeb, November 13, 2005:

    PR Leap, November 13, 2005:

    And did appear in the local paper November 13, 2005 as well, tho severely butchered.

    Wednesday, November 09, 2005


    So, I'm admittedly a big Superman fan. See previous entry. I'm looking forward to the movie as much as can be expected. I mean, I'm excited for a new entry into the Superman celluloid mythos. I have reservations however because of the liberties taken by the director and producers in the storyline. Needless to say, I'd have been much happier with a completely new retelling of the origin story, than an attempt to cash in on the popularity of the previous series of films and the renewed interest in all things related to Christopher Reeves. Don't get me wrong, I love the first two movies from the previous series, I saw them as an impressionable pre-teen and believed in my heart that a man could fly. I just feel that the new movie would have been better served in a completely new retelling, taking advantage of the leaps and bounds that special effects have taken in the last few years. Mr. Singer should have taken a cue from director Christopher Nolan. I mean, come on, Lois Lane has a child??? Do not get me started!

    Movie Countdown Clock: Click Here!

    On another note, for anything and everything Superman, check out this site, some good stuff there.

    Monday, November 07, 2005

    The Professional Graphic Design Association launches on the Internet.

    November 7, 2005 - The Professional Graphic Design Association (PGDA) has officially launched with the announcement of an elected Board of Directors from across the globe. Elected officers to the Executive Committee are Catherine (cat) Morley, (Bangkok, Thailand), President; Robert Wurth, (Lincoln, NE, USA), Vice President; Mark Astrella, (Maui, Hawaii,USA), Secretary; and Jeanette Wickham, (Melbourne, Victoria, Australia), Treasurer.

    The PGDA is an international non-profit professional organization with a client focus. Through their Code of Ethics and Professional Standards, the PGDA will target members and clients, educating both to the value of ethical conduct in the design industry.

    The leadership of the PGDA has set ambitious goals for its first year. "I believe the international graphic design community has long awaited an association such as the PGDA-one that not only focuses on buyers of design, but the ethics and professional business practices of the design industry," said Catherine (cat) Morley, President. "By providing an excellent one-stop business resource for clients, we plan to develop a top rated community of members who are concerned where the design industry is heading. As a result, we will create a much improved working relationship between clients and designers."

    In the coming months the PGDA will be running surveys out of the new PGDA blog to determine the combined needs of clients and designers. Each month the survey results will be analyzed and posted on the PGDA blog. Participation whenever possible is most welcome, as your opinion is invaluable.

    The PGDA's proposed short term aims and objectives:

    . A strategy for creating professional, ethical, client-focused standards and making these standards easily available.

    . A strategy for educating clients about the value of marketing and design.

    . A strategy for the promotion of the PGDA to both clients and designers (grass-roots, viral-marketing, forum-postings, affiliations, use of membership fees for advertisements, etc.)

    . A strategy for making alliances with related graphics and design web sites, organisations and business groups.

    . Create a web site that clients can visit for more information about ethical design practices. The site is to be simple, non-threatening and easily accessible to clients.

    The PGDA's proposed long term aims and objectives:

    . Present a Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Practices that are targeted toward clients and make these standards easily available. This will form the basis upon which PGDA will be built.

    . Create an atmosphere where professional ethics and standards guide the working relationships between clients and designers.

    . Develop a range of materials that educate both designers and clients about the
    value of adhering to ethical principles.

    . Develop a range of materials that educate clients about the value of graphic design and marketing.

    . Develop plans for the promotion of the PGDA to both clients and designers.

    . Develop steps for recruiting students and up-and-coming designers into the PGDA.

    . Develop alliances with related graphics and design websites, organisations and business groups.

    . Develop an easily accessible website that clients can visit for more information about ethical design practices, designers can visit for membership information, and members can visit for discussions, promotion and information.

    . Develop branding materials for the PGDA that allow members to announce their affiliation and declare their adherence to the ethical standards that the PGDA promotes.

    PGDA Committees
    The Design Organization Research (DOR) Committee, is the first committee to be established (created on 28 October 2005). It is researching details of the present design organisations worldwide to enable the PGDA to liaise for the benefit of all organisations and designers. The PGDA is not in competition with established design organisations, but has been established to complement them. DOR Committee members are comprised of Catherine Morley (Chair), Alina Hagen, Chris Gee, Chris Gonink, Danita Reynolds, Elisabetta Bruno, Erin Harris, Matt Beazley, Kenneth Paul Buras Jr. and Ruth Farrugia.

    If you would like to volunteer your skills in any capacity, please contact the PGDA

    © 2005 Professional Graphic Design Association (PGDA)

    Related Link:

    Sunday, November 06, 2005


    A special thank you to Nik Dirga of the Roseburg area newspaper the News Review for including me and my humble blogs in his recent article entitled 'Blog On' (Sunday, November 06, 2005). An article spotlighting Douglas County bloggers with photos, interviews, and links to their respective blog sites. I think this is the first time my picture's been in this particular newspaper since kindergarten when I played dentist to a mannequin. ;)

    Here is a link to the article on the newspaper's website:

    Nik, thanks again.

    On another note, if you've come to this blog after having seen the article in the paper, leave me a comment and say hello. I'd love to hear from you. If, by chance, you KNEW me from when I lived in Roseburg as a kid, definitely leave me a comment or shoot me an e-mail. It'd be great to touch base and reminisce.


    Additional Links:

    Tuesday, November 01, 2005


    Cat Morley of Designer's Who Blog, Creative Latitude and Katz-i Design contacted me this afternoon, she's making some changes to the Designers Who Blog site and needed some...well...a picture is worth a thousand words right? Snicker away! This masthead will be one of many used on the site on a rotating basis and can be seen by refreshing the main page when visiting the site. The mastheads consist of photographs of contributing designers and their logos.


    Recently I've touched base with an extremely talented website designer who is helping me to develop my business website. In the meantime, while the site is under development, I've decided to post a sneak preview here on my blog of one of the pages on the site as I've designed it, as well as examples of some of my recent work. Enjoy!

    What Corporate Identity Isn't

    Ran across this article recently and thought it was worth revisiting. From the website Strange Brand ( )

    Misconceptions about the purpose of a corporate identity system often cause companies to limp along with a sub-standard business image. Find out how you can avoid these common mistakes in your own organization.

    1. Corporate Identity Isn’t a Selling Point
    This is probably the biggest mistake that new companies make when trying to develop their corporate identity. The purpose of your identity is—perhaps surprisingly—not to convince people to buy your product. There are other tools (e.g., text content, your staff, and the product itself) that actually perform that task.
    Instead, its primary role is to serve as an anchor that helps to lock the overall message created by those other tools into your customers’ minds. Think of it as a shortcut, a mnemonic to help your client remember the cumulative effect of your other sales and marketing efforts.
    Starbucks is a fine example of an identity done right. The name and logo are essentially meaningless in themselves, but they are punchy and memorable enough that they can effectively represent “the Starbucks experience”—which actually comprises more tangible things such as the decor, the employees, the coffee, etc.—in an abbreviated form.
    If they had fallen into the trap of trying to actually sell coffee with their identity, they probably would have come up with a name like “Superior Coffee” and some kind of generic swirly logo—and it would never have become the success that it is today.
    A rose named “premium red flower” doesn’t smell nearly as sweet.
    Freeing your identity from the burden of trying to sell your product allows you to develop one that excels at its true job, which is to instantly evoke the experience of interacting with your organization.
    2. Corporate Identity Isn’t Critical
    I say this not to dissuade you from investing in your identity, but rather to prevent you from thinking that you can succeed simply by following the lead of big brands, because those big brands often thrive not because of their identities, but despite them.
    IBM is a terrible name for a business, for example. It doesn’t give a strong anchor for their overall brand experience. It’s just alphabet soup. They’ve managed to thrive over the years, however, because their products, people, and marketing efforts have compensated for that weakness.
    It would be a mistake to attribute their success to their name, particularly if you then try to become “the next IBM” by giving your company an equally dull name.
    Instead, work on developing an identity that is declarative, vivid, and memorable. Be fresh—don’t worry about emulating others, because the whole point of your identity is to make you stand out.
    3. Corporate Identity Isn’t Comfortable
    If you’re sitting around the conference room table with a logo sketch on the whiteboard, and all the major stakeholders are nodding and smiling, then you’ve almost certainly got a dud on your hands.
    Committees are great at developing identities that are generally pleasant, but you can’t be generally pleasant and remarkable at the same time. A great brand is evocative, passionate, and impressive—and it’s a rare committee that can come up with anything that can be describedwith those words.
    Trying to find an identity that “we like” is a fundamental error made by business decisionmakers. It actually doesn’t matter much if you like it, even if you’re the owner of the business, because your personal preferences have little to do with how your customers will respond to it.
    (In fact, because you’re probably in a position involving a fair amount of risk and stress, the names that appeal to you are exactly the sort of generic, comfortable, soothing names that you should probably avoid. It’s easy to name your company “Apex Shoes”—and hard to name it “Nike”)

    Link to original post:

    Monday, October 31, 2005

    Happy Halloween!


    Logos, Flags, and Escutcheons

    Logos, Flags, and Escutcheons
    by Paul Rand

    Originally published in 1991 by AIGA, the professional association for design.
    Also available in "Looking Closer: Critical Writings on Graphic Design" from Allworth Press.

    "It reminds me of the Georgia chain gang," quipped the IBM executive, when he first eyed the striped logo. When the Westinghouse insignia (1960) was first seen, it was greeted similarly with such gibes as "this looks like a pawnbroker's sign." How many exemplary works have gone down the drain, because of such pedestrian fault-finding? Bad design is frequently the consequence of mindless dabbling, and the difficulty is not confined merely to the design of logos. This lack of understanding pervades all visual design.

    There is no accounting for people's perceptions. Some see a logo, or anything else seeable, the way they see a Rorschach inkblot. Others look without seeing either the meaning or even the function of a logo. It is perhaps, this sort of problem that prompted ABC TV to toy with the idea of "updating" their logo (1962). They realized the folly only after a market survey revealed high audience recognition. This is to say nothing of the intrinsic value of a well-established symbol. When a logo is designed is irrelevant; quality, not vintage nor vanity, is the determining factor.

    There are as many reasons for designing a new logo, or updating an old one, as there are opinions. The belief that a new or updated design will be some kind charm that will magically transform any business, is not uncommon. A redesigned logo may have the advantage of implying something new, something improved—but this is short-lived if a company doesn't live up to its claim. Sometimes a logo is redesigned because it really needs redesigning—because it's ugly, old fashioned, or inappropriate. But many times, it is merely to feed someone's ego, to satisfy a CEO who doesn't wish to be linked with the past, or often because it's the thing to do.

    Opposed to the idea of arbitrarily changing a logo, there's the "let's leave it alone" school—sometimes wise, more often superstitious, occasionally nostalgic or, at times, even trepidatious. Not long ago, I offered to make some minor adjustments to the UPS (1961) logo. This offer was unceremoniously turned down, even though compensation played no role. If a design can be refined, without disturbing its image, it seems reasonable to do so. A logo, after all, is an instrument of pride and should be shown at its best.

    If, in the business of communications, "image is king," the essence of this image, the logo, is a jewel in its crown.

    Here's what a logo is and does:

    A logo is a flag, a signature, an escutcheon.
    A logo doesn't sell (directly), it identifies.
    A logo is rarely a description of a business.
    A logo derives its meaning from the quality of the thing it symbolizes, not the other way around.
    A logo is less important than the product it signifies; what it means is more important that what it looks like.

    A logo appears in many guises: a signature is a kind of logo, so is a flag. The French flag, for example, or the flag of Saudi Arabia, are aesthetically pleasing symbols. One happens to be pure geometry, the other a combination of Arabic script, together with an elegant saber—two diametrically opposed visual concepts; yet both function effectively. Their appeal, however, is more than a matter of aesthetics. In battle, a flag can be a friend or foe. The ugliest flag is beautiful if it happens to be on your side. "Beauty," they say, "is in the eye of the beholder," in peace or in war, in flags or in logos. We all believe our flag the most beautiful; this tells us something about logos.

    Should a logo be self-explanatory? It is only by association with a product, a service, a business, or a corporation that a logo takes on any real meaning. It derives its meaning and usefulness from the quality of that which it symbolizes. If a company is second rate, the logo will eventually be perceived as second rate. It is foolhardy to believe that a logo will do its job right off, before an audience has been properly conditioned. Only after it becomes familiar does a logo function as intended; and only when the product or service has been judged effective or ineffective, suitable or unsuitable, does it become truly representative.

    Logos may also be designed to deceive; and deception assumes many forms, from imitating some peculiarity to outright copying. Design is a two-faced monster. One of the most benign symbols, the swastika, lost its place in the pantheon of the civilized when it was linked to evil, but its intrinsic quality remains indisputable. This explains the tenacity of good design.

    The role of the logo is to point, to designate—in as simple a manner as possible. A design that is complex, like a fussy illustration or an arcane abstraction, harbors a self-destruct mechanism. Simple ideas, as well as simple designs are, ironically, the products of circuitous mental purposes. Simplicity is difficult to achieve, yet worth the effort.

    The effectiveness of a good logo depends on:

    a. distinctiveness
    b. visibility
    c. useability
    d. memorability
    e. universality
    f. durability
    g. timelessness

    Most of us believe that the subject matter of a logo depends on the kind of business or service involved. Who is the audience? How is it marketed? What is the media? These are some of the considerations. An animal might suit one category, at the same time that it would be an anathema in another. Numerals are possible candidates: 747, 7-Up, 7-11, and so are letters, which are not only possible but most common. However, the subject matter of a logo is of relatively little importance; nor, it seems, does appropriateness always play a significant role. This does not imply that appropriateness is undesirable. It merely indicates that a one-to-one relationship, between a symbol and what is symbolized, is very often impossible to achieve and, under certain conditions, may even be objectionable. Ultimately, the only thing mandatory, it seems, is that a logo be attractive, reproducible in one color and in exceedingly small sizes.

    The Mercedes symbol, for example, has nothing to do with automobiles; yet it is a great symbol, not because its design is great, but because it stands for a great product. The same can be said about apples and computers. Few people realize that a bat is the symbol of authenticity for Bacardi Rum; yet Bacardi is still being imbibed. Lacoste sportswear, for example, has nothing to do with alligators (or crocodiles), and yet the little green reptile is a memorable and profitable symbol. What makes the Rolls Royce emblem so distinguished is not its design (which is commonplace), but the quality of the automobile for which it stands. Similarly, the signature of George Washington is distinguished not only for its calligraphy, but because George Washington was Washington. Who cares how badly the signature is scribbled on a check, if the check doesn't bounce? Likes or dislikes should play no part in the problem of identification; nor should they have anything to do with approval or disapproval. Utopia!

    All this seems to imply that good design is superfluous. Design, good or bad, is a vehicle of memory. Good design adds value of some kind and, incidentally, could be sheer pleasure; it respects the viewer—his sensibilities—and rewards the entrepreneur. It is easier to remember a well designed image than one that is muddled. A well design logo, in the end, is a reflection of the business it symbolizes. It connotes a thoughtful and purposeful enterprise, and mirrors the quality of its products and services. It is good public relations—a harbinger of good will.

    It says "We care."

    Wednesday, October 26, 2005


    Voice of Jolly Green Giant dies at 80

    PALM SPRINGS, Calif. (AP) — Elmer "Len" Dresslar Jr., who extolled vegetables to generations of TV watchers as the booming voice of the Jolly Green Giant, has died. He was 80.
    In addition to his stint as the Jolly Green Giant, Dresslar did ads for Rice Krispies, Marlboro, Amoco and Dinty Moore over the years.
    By Jim Mone, AP
    Dresslar died Oct. 16 of cancer, according to daughter Teri Bennett.
    Dresslar was an entertainer and singer for nearly six decades. But his voice rang through millions of households when he sang the simple refrain, "Ho, Ho, Ho," in an ad jingle for Green Giant foods.
    "His was the most consistent and most frequent voice of the Jolly Green Giant over the years, the one consumers are going to recognize," said Tara Johnson, a spokeswoman for General Mills, which owns Green Giant Co.
    Dresslar, a Kansas native, moved to Chicago with his wife in the early 1950s to study voice after touring with a production of South Pacific. By the 1960s, the Navy veteran had carved out a career singing in clubs, on television and in advertising jingles.
    He recorded 15 albums with The Singers Unlimited jazz group and appeared on the CBS television show In Town Tonight from 1955 to 1960. He and his wife, Dorothy, retired to Palm Springs in 1991.
    Ad jingles were the most consistent part of his career, and he landed roles for Rice Krispies cereal, Marlboro cigarettes, Amoco oil and Dinty Moore canned beef stew.
    He periodically re-recorded the "Ho, Ho, Ho" for Jolly Green Giant commercials, most recently about 10 years ago.
    Bennett said her father auditioned for the Green Giant job without any idea his baritone would become so recognizable.
    "He never got tired of it," she said. "If nothing else, it put my sister and I through college."

    Copyright 2005 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

    Related Link:

    Sunday, October 23, 2005


    Blown away: A long overdue documentary recounts the catastrophic explosion that still burns in the memories of Roseburg residents
    By Mark Baker
    The Register-Guard
    Published: Sunday, October 16, 2005

    ROSEBURG - It blew people out of their beds. It blew windows out nine miles away.

    And it blew Chuck McCullum away, in more ways than one. It still does.

    The then-15-year-old was riding home with a friend three miles west of downtown at about 1 a.m. on Aug. 7, 1959, when they felt the earth move under the car and heard the magnificent boom on the other side of Mount Nebo.

    "And you looked back over the mountain and you could see the fire coming up over it," says McCullum, standing in the Texaco service station he's worked at - and now owns - since about a year after what locals call "The Blast."

    What else would you call something that blew up seven downtown city blocks, blew a mushroom cloud into the sky, killed 14 , injured 125 and caused $12 million in damage in 1959 dollars?

    The Texaco station has been at the corner of Southeast Stephens Street and Southeast Mosher Avenue - about 3 1/2 blocks and one street east of where the dynamite-filled truck blew - since 1936. When the explosion rumbled through 23 years later, the station suffered minor damage, McCullum says. But the buildings and the people who were closer to ground zero weren't so lucky.

    At 10:30 p.m. Monday, Oregon Public Broadcasting will air "Roseburg Blast: A Catastrophe and Its Heroes." The documentary is 26 minutes long and, according to many whose lives were touched in one way or another by the explosion, 46 years overdue.

    Narrated by longtime ABC News correspondent Barry Serafin, a Roseburg teenager in 1959, the film tells the story of one of the worst disasters in small-town America history. Produced and edited by Southern Oregon Public Television's production manager, Victor Dailey, it also has knocked loose memories that, although buried, never really went away.

    "It was some night, all right," says Del McKay, 81, with a laugh. McKay is featured in the film and was a 35-year-old radio announcer at Roseburg's KRXL at the time. "We called that our instant urban renewal."

    McKay and other longtime Roseburg residents can joke now - sometimes - about the unthinkable tragedy for what was then a city of 12,000 residents.

    "The Blast" happened at 1:14 a.m. when a fire that had started inside the Gerretsen Building Supply Co. on Southeast Pine Street ignited 6 1/2 tons of dynamite and other explosives loaded onto a delivery truck parked in front of the three-story building. It not only leveled buildings and blew to bits those nearby, it left a crater 52 feet across and 20 feet deep.

    It also changed local, state and federal regulations governing the transportation of hazardous materials - the main one being that you could no longer leave a vehicle carrying explosives unattended. The combination of fertilizer compound and explosives responsible for the Roseburg blast was similar to that left by Timothy McVeigh in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in April 1995. That explosion killed 168 - intentionally.

    The majority of those killed in sparsely populated Roseburg were members of two separate families sleeping in a nearby apartment building. Also killed were a teenage boy who stopped and tried to help put out the fire as his girlfriend ran for help; Roseburg's assistant fire chief, Roy McFarland; and a rookie patrolman for the Roseburg Police Department.

    George Rutherford, a driver for the Pacific Powder Co. in Tenino, Wash., had parked the truck there for the night - for delivery the next morning - and walked a few blocks east to the Umpqua Hotel. Most of the load was to be used to blast logging roads along the North Umpqua River east of town.

    The film tells how Rutherford ran from Room 207 at the hotel after waking and learning of the fire, and where it was, to try to move the truck. But it was too late. After hearing the blast, Rutherford was held back by bystanders and is quoted as saying, "Let me go, let me go! I've got to go back and see how many people I've killed."

    A room devoted to "The Blast" at the Douglas County Museum - in conjunction with the OPB special - illustrates the destruction. Photographs mounted on the wall show an apocalyptic scene with buildings gutted, automobiles thrown aside as if they were toys, and the smoldering remnants of what was once a core chunk of downtown.

    "All of a sudden, it looked like the end of the world," says Roseburg resident Norman Neal in the film, a Douglas County Sheriff's Department employee in 1959.

    The axle of Rutherford's truck landed 3 1/2 blocks away. Shaped like a boomerang today, it is now part of the museum's exhibit and sits out in the open where you can put your hand to the cold steel and imagine that it must have been a touch warmer a little more than 46 years ago.

    The blast was so powerful that a Western Airlines jet flying 17,000 feet over town radioed the Medford airport to report that a nuclear attack might have hit Roseburg.

    "They talk about it going 300 feet in the air?" McKay recalls of the mushroom cloud. "I swear it went 2,500 feet in the air."

    On a hot, muggy August night, most folks had their windows open as they slept, including the McKay family, where Del McKay and his wife, Virginia, still live today on Northwest Beaumont Avenue just west of Interstate 5 and a couple of miles from the blast site downtown. Over the years, Del McKay had developed a habit where he would grab his tape recorder and head out the door whenever he heard a siren. In the early morning hours of Aug. 7, 1959, as the McKays and their three young sons looked out the window and could see the town on fire, and then were shaken by the explosion, Del McKay grabbed his tape recorder and headed out the door.

    This time, however, he went straight to his wife's parents' house to make sure they were all right. He tried to drive his father-in-law downtown to check on his office, but they couldn't get into the area. Del McKay ended up meeting Douglas County Sheriff Ira Byrd - whom he later took back to the radio station for an interview in the early morning hours - and flying in Byrd's plane above the burning downtown to survey the damage and fire.

    "One thing I can remember," Del McKay says, "almost every road that led into Roseburg, you could see the (fire engine) lights and see that help was coming."

    It was coming from as far away as Eugene as emergency vehicles rushed to the scene.

    A scene that is now marked only by a rock with a commemorative plaque attached to it by the Horizon car dealership's service and parts department. A scene that is unrecognizable to the one that was here 46 years, two months and nine days ago.

    This story is of course of particular interest to me since it's local history, but it also has a certain relevance when I hear my father tell how he had been downtown Roseburg that night. As a teenager of just 17 in 1959 my father had actually stopped at the local Dairy Queen that night which had been within spitting distance of "Ground Zero." He had returned to his home in Myrtle Creek when the actual blast had occurred, but recounts how even as far away as Myrtle Creek, about 16 miles away if I recall correctly, he'd heard the explosion. The explosion impacted my mother's life in another way as the junior high school she was about to begin classes in was irreparably damaged, forcing her to bus to another school. My grandfather was a local policeman at the time, and recalls receiving a call in the middle of the night to report for duty and spent many weeks after the event serving in any capacity he could helping to keep the peace in the ravaged downtown.

    Other relevant links:

    Thursday, October 20, 2005

    Vintage Halloween Photo Goes Big Time...

    Recently I shared one of my personal Halloween photographs with Keith Milford, the guy behind the Old Haunts site I'd spotlighted a few posts ago. I was pleased to see the photograph make an appearance on his site. October 1976 and Rhett and I never looked better. Check it out below. ;)

    Tuesday, October 18, 2005


    Ran across this website recently, found some interest there. It's a website basically devoted to movies geared towards children made before 1985. Check it out, click on the image to be directed to the website itself.

    From the website's introduction page: is a website devoted to the golden age of world children's cinema. We will try to cover feature films and short subjects shown theatrically, in the U.S. and elsewhere, between appx. 1930 and 1985.

    As you can see, this project is a work-in-progress. Our goal is to eventually have a database of over 1001 fantasies, fairy tales and adventures from the golden age of children's cinema!

    We will not attempt to cover, for the time being at least, the following film categories:

    silent films (ALICE IN WONDERLAND, 1914, etc.)
    made-for-TV movies (THE NIGHT THEY SAVED CHRISTMAS, etc.)
    made-for-TV specials (RUDOLPH, THE RED-NOSED REINDEER, etc.)
    made-for-TV series (FAERIE TALE THEATRE, etc.)
    comedy series (ABBOTT & COSTELLO, BOWERY BOYS, etc.)
    adventure series (TARZAN, BOMBA, etc.)
    films produced after 1985
    We realize this grouping is very subjective, and we apologize if your favorite film is not listed here. We decided to start with the core group of films which could be considered the true children's cinema of yore.

    As for not discussing productions made after 1985, there are two reasons for this apparently arbitrary cutoff point. Firstly, we saw a radical decline in the quality of world cinema after 1985. Secondly, the large group of films produced in the past twenty years is covered extensively elsewhere. We are trying to focus on older, better (?), and certainly more obscure films.

    If you have a favorite film (or films) listed on this website, please consider submitting a guest review for posting. We love to read guest reviews! It can be nothing more than your memories of seeing a film in the theatre, your opinion of the film's charms, or anything else which the film evoked in you. Contact us!

    The history of children's cinema is wide and diverse. From the earliest days of the medium, films intended for the younger citizens were produced. And as film stumbled awkwardly into the sound era, when it truly became the great art form of the 20th century, films made by and large for children became an ever-growing category.

    The "Kiddie Matinee" is a phenomenon primarily of the 1960's and 1970's. Weekend matinees, however, have existed since the birth of the movies. From the silent era on, kids and grownups would gather at their neighborhood theatre on Saturday or Sunday afternoon to watch their favorite cliffhanger serials, newsreels, westerns, comedies and gangster films.

    Weekend matinees continued through two World Wars and into the 1950s, as adventure series such as Tarzan, Jungle Jim and Bomba. as well as comedy series like the Three Stooges, the Bowery Boys, and Abbott & Costello took over the matinees.

    Of course, Walt Disney changed the face of children's cinema forever. From the first sound cartoon, STEAMBOAT WILLIE, to the first full-length animated feature film, SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS (1937), Disney and Co. created and fueled a market for children's product for the rest of the 20th century, and beyond.

    Ironically, it was a low-budget imitator of Disney, the Florida producer K. Gordon Murray, who actually created the peculiarly 60's phenomenon known as the "Kiddie Matinee". Starting with the bizarre Mexican fantasy SANTA CLAUS, Murray began a trend wherein a film specifically designed for weekend matinees would be shown ONLY on Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons. All tickets would be sold for a fixed price, adults and children alike.

    In addition, rental fees for Murray's films were a flat 50%, which was very generous at the time, and proved lucrative for theatre owners and distributors alike.

    Murray's idea took off like wildfire, and before long, Disney, and other quick-buck outfits such as Childhood Productions, were releasing product designed especially for this new market.

    Of course, it helped that the demographic of the United States had changed radically since end of World War II. An unusually large population of young people, tagged "the Baby Boomers" and born after 1946, were just coming to movie-going age in the late 1950's and early 1960's. Murray, Disney and company were quick to tap into this ever-expanding kiddie market.

    The proliferation of fairy tale cinema worldwide after the end of World War II can be seen as culture's attempt to recapture the innocence shattered by the horrors of the global conflict, just as the postwar Baby Boom is often seen as the species' desperate attempt to persist through massive propagation, after glimpsing its plausible annihilation in the dark mirrors of the Holocaust and Hiroshima.

    Whatever the stimulus, The Kiddie Matinee grew like wildfire, and by the mid-1960's was a force to be dealt with. For many kids in the U.S., the Kiddie Matinee was their first exposure to world cinema, as many exotic and bizarre foreign fantasies from countries such as Mexico, Germany, Russia and Japan were released. As such, the Kiddie Matinee was truly a melting pot of world culture, and one of its everlasting gifts to all.

    The Kiddie Matinee market dwindled as the Baby Boomers matured and went to college. In addition, in the early 1970's, the major studios conspired with the big exhibition chains, and created contract clauses whereby exclusive "Weekends Only" product was no longer allowed. This bold move dealt a death blow to the largely-independent Kiddie market, and although Kiddie Matinees limped through the 1970's, by the early 1980's it was dead. It was no help that home video came in at this time, and created a ready-made babysitter.

    Dead, but not forgotten! Browse our A-Z files, our people pages, our overview of Kiddie Matinee studios and distributors, and take a trip back to a magical time we will surely never see again!

    We hope you enjoy your trip the through world of! Check back often, or better yet, write a review of your favorite film and send it to us!)

    Saturday, October 08, 2005


    Came across this blog recently and was so impressed with it I thought I should share it. For anyone who, like me, is into classic comics of the 60's, 70's and 80's this one is very entertaining. It bills itself as the "World's Greatest Comic Blogazine" and the "Most Original Web Log in Comics History", and I tend to agree. It seems to be maintained by Robby Reed, the hero of the classic "Dial H for Hero" comic. Regardless, I love it! Check it out! Click on the image to be directed to the site.

    Tuesday, October 04, 2005


    Thought I'd post this in honor of Halloween being just around the corner.

    A while ago, I'd come across a great blog dedicated to "old photographs of Halloweens long past. Faded, out-of-focus snapshots. Far away memories of the chilly Autumns of our childhoods. Turn of the Century, to the '60s & '70s." Alot of that introduction comes from the site itself, but it gets the point across most effectively. The blog creator, Keith Milford, is one of my new heroes, this blog and a number of other blogs he maintains, which I'll list below, are some of my favorite visits. As always, click on the images to go directly to each site. Enjoy!

    Retro Junk

    Hardly "junk" in my opinion. More like Retro Treasures!

    This is a site I came across that has some great old commercials, movie trailers and opening sequences to a ton of old TV shows too. The site categorizes everything by era, (70's, 80's or 90's) and alphabetically as well. I've barely scratched the surface, there's alot of stuff to see here. As an example, Click "TV Shows", click on an era, click "Alphabetical" and then choose a show and click "Show Opening".

    Prepare to waste some time here! Click on the image to be taken to the site.

    Thursday, September 29, 2005


    CNN reports recently that a new owner is dumping the ASK JEEVES butler mascot after a ten year run. See the story below.

    Ask Jeeves to drop butler mascot
    Site's new owner wants different image

    SAN FRANCISCO, California (AP) -- The genteel butler that has been Ask Jeeves Inc.'s face for nearly a decade is getting ousted in a corporate takeover.

    Jeeves, the slightly chubby and balding English butler, isn't the kind of image that e-commerce conglomerate InterActiveCorp wants representing the Ask Jeeves search engine, according to IAC Chairman Barry Diller. His New York-based company bought Ask Jeeves for $2.3 billion in July.

    Speaking at a Goldman Sachs investor conference last week, Diller announced that his company intends to drop Jeeves as a mascot and shorten the search site's name to Ask or

    "Not that I don't like that fat butler," Diller said, according to a transcript provided by Thomson Financial.

    After Diller's speech, Oakland, California-based Ask Jeeves issued a statement that said that no decision has been reached on what the company's new name will be or when the change will occur.

    Ask Jeeves spent more than $100 million building its brand around the cartoon butler during the dot-com boom. The marketing blitz paid for a 70-foot Jeeves balloon that floated over Macy's Thanksgiving Day and 15 million labels of the grinning mascot that were affixed to apples sold in 8,000 supermarkets.

    But the butler (modeled after a character in P.G. Wodehouse novels) started to become a liability after Ask Jeeves upgraded its search technology to become more competitive with industry leaders Google Inc. and Yahoo Inc.

    Company research indicated that consumers still associated the butler with the early versions of the Ask Jeeves search engine, which was designed to field inquiries in the form of direct questions -- a technology that delivered inconsistent results.

    "This research shows use of the character as the prominent symbol of the brand may inhibit people from recognizing that our search engine has changed," the company said in a statement.

    Last year, Ask Jeeves tried to spruce up the butler, introducing a trimmer and more sophisticated-looking Jeeves.

    Diller hopes to turn the search engine into the mortar binding together a disparate collection of Web sites owned by IAC and Expedia Inc., which recently spun off into a separate company.

    Find this article at:

    Thursday, September 22, 2005


    Adventures In Blogging has recently been recognized in a new website dedicated to graphic designers to blog. Designers Who Blog ( is a new website developed by Cat Morley of Katz-I Design ( and Creative Latitude (

    The site orignally came to fruition when Cat was writing an article for Creative Latitude about the phenomenon of blogging and her introduction to it.

    It also bears to mention, that my other blog, “Design” Inspiration is also listed on the site, and was in fact the first blog “featured” there.

    Wednesday, September 14, 2005

    The Box Doodle Project

    Someone recently brought this site to my attention, thought I would share!

    From the website: The rules are quite simple: rearrange a box to make any kind of figure or object.

    You gotta see it to believe it...

    Saturday, September 10, 2005

    Displaced Designer

    Alot has been written lately regarding the tragic events of the past few weeks resulting from Hurricane Katrina. I've been torn, in making up my mind as to whether to discuss it here or not. Mainly because the strong feelings I have concerning these horrific past few weeks. The events themselves have left me feeling powerless and horrified. I've had an almost overwhelming urge to just pack a bag and find transport to the affected area to help in any manner I was able, but the realization of the futility of that effort keeps me home. If there was anything at all I felt I could do, I would be there in an instant.

    In any event, I've recently been made aware of this website, and felt compelled to share it here.

    From the website:

    “In order to consolidate resources and efforts, this site is now working in collaboration with the AIGA — hopefully extending the reach and effectiveness of this initiative so that no designer is left behind.
    There are so many displaced individuals who've lost loved ones, homes, jobs, possessions — in many cases everything. Many of us watching the tragedy unfold have asked ourselves, "what can we do?" People have responded by offering shelter, a space in their homes, jobs, equipment, advice, companionship.
    We wish to help those affected by Hurricane Katrina by matching needs with offers of help. We have expanded the information requested on our forms so that we can present needs and offers in specific categories: space, gear, work, cash, school. If you need help or assistance, we hope this resource is useful. For those making offers of support, thank you.
    This site is a project of the AIGA and The Chopping Block. Requests for help and offers of assistance can be made at either site. AIGA also has additional articles and resources in its Design Forum.”

    The site lists a number of other resources as well. if you haven't made a donation, this is your opportunity to do so. Cliche as it may seem, we CAN make a difference. Check out the site.

    Thursday, September 08, 2005

    Creative Latitude Article Mentions Blogs.

    A new article at Creative Latitude mentions this blogsite and the new “Design” Inspiration blog as ones to watch. Written by my friend Catherine (Cat) Morley, project manager at Creative Latitude, the article outlines her new fascination nigh addiction with blogs, podcasts and the like. A great little article that showcases a number of mostly design-related blogsites and gives a humorous spin to her new dependency. It also has a great new interview with Chris Gee of The Prepared Mind. Check it out!

    Click Here for a link to the article.

    Monday, September 05, 2005

    “Design” Inspiration

    I've recently launched a new blogsite. “Design” Inspiration in a nutshell is going to be designer and illustrator focused. I'm going to be interviewing talented designers and illustrators, posting links of their recent work and to their respective websites. The idea, is to introduce the reader to new talent and seasoned veterans alike. Get a look inside their heads and see what makes them tick. It will also, hopefully, serve as a new venue for design inspiration, as the title so aptly implies.

    Check out the first installment, a great interview with designer Keith Bowman. I think you'll enjoy it. I've got a list of designers and illustrators already lined up to contribute, it will be alot of fun to see what becomes of this.

    If you're a designer or illustrator and would be interested in contributing, please visit the site and contact me at the e-mail address provided.

    Hope you enjoy, and be sure to let me know what you think. Click on the link below to be directed to the new site.

    “Design” Inspiration