Brain Pickings

Posts Tagged ‘art’

03 NOVEMBER, 2011

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design

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The much-awaited monumental monograph of the greatest graphic designer of all time.

Saul Bass (1920-1996) is one of the most iconic and influential visual communicators of the 20th century — possibly the most famous graphic designer of all time — having broken out of the conformity of the 1950s to shape the aesthetic of generations of designers and animators with his bold and lively film title sequences and graphic design. (His insights on creativity and advice on doing quality work are also a timeless treat for any creator.) Yet no definitive monograph of his prolific, monumental work has existed — until now. Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design, designed by Bass’s daughter Jennifer and written by renowned design historian Pat Kirkham, is a formidable 428-page volume featuring more than 1,400 of Bass’s illustrations, many never before published, that offer an unprecedented look at his legacy and the creative process behind his most celebrated posters, title sequences, and logo designs.

I want everything we do to be beautiful. I don’t give a damn whether the client understands that that’s worth anything, or that the client thinks it’s worth anything, or whether it is worth anything. It’s worth it to me. It’s the way I want to live my life. I want to make beautiful things, even if nobody cares.” ~ Saul Bass

Publisher Laurence King put together this epic video of the making of the book, to give you a sense of the scale and ambition of the project:

From his iconic title sequences…

… to his unforgettable posters…

…to his legendary logos for mega-brands like AT&T, Quaker Oats, and United Airlines, the monograph contextualizes his most significant works and analyzes each film project individually to dissect its graphic elements and motifs.

Philip French has a fantastic review-and-so-much-more of the book over at The Guardian.

Had Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design been released before the publication of this selection of the 100 best graphic design books of the past 100 years, it would most certainly have been included, and quite possibly would have topped the list — it is, truly, one of the most beautiful, inspirational, important design books you’ll ever lay eyes and hands on.

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03 NOVEMBER, 2011

Stefanie Posavec on Her Obsessive Analog Data Visualization

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Inside the brain of one of today’s most creative information patternists.

There are no words to describe how much I heart the work of information designer Stefanie Posavec, whose Writing Without Words project remains one of the most poetic pieces of visual meta-storytelling you’ll ever see and who last year generously visualized the best of Brain Pickings. In the age of computational data visualization, part of what makes Posavec’s work so remarkable is that so much of it is code-free, done entirely by hand, with pencil and paper, extracting fascinating data patterns from ordinary subjects.

This wonderful feature by Protein offers a rare glimpse of Posavec’s creative process and a priceless tour of the wonderland that is her mind:

I spend lots of time reading and rereading text and counting words or counting numbers or just going through a subject matter repeatedly until I have all the data in a notebook, and then I use that data to create my graphics. By reading and rereading these texts, I’m able to understand more about a specific text or a specific subject matter than I would otherwise, than I would if I wrote a computer program to analyze that text for me.” ~ Stefanie Posavec

via feltron

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02 NOVEMBER, 2011

The Art of Pixar: Behind the Scenes of 25 Years of Beloved Animation

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A peek inside the creative process of modern animation’s greatest gems, from sketchbook to screen.

For the past 25 years, Pixar artists have delighted the world with their whimsical short films and charming side projects. More than two years ago, animation historian Amid Amidi brought us The Art of Pixar Short Film — a wonderful journey into the charisma and visual eloquence of Pixar’s storytelling.

Today, to celebrate Pixar’s 25th anniversary this year, Amidi is back with The Art of Pixar: The Complete Color Scripts and Select Art from 25 Years of Animation — a priceless behind-the-scenes tour of Pixar’s 12 beloved feature films, old and new, including Toy Story, A Bug’s Life, Up, Cars 2, and more. The art comes from the Pixar Living Archive, created during the development of A Bug’s Life. From the complete color scripts for each film published in full color for the first time to the stunning visual development art that took these stories from sketchbook to screen, the tome is an absolute treasure for animation aficionados and visual storytellers alike.

Color script: The Incredibles

Color script: Up

A foreword by the legendary John Lasseter adds the ultimate cherry on top.

With 320 magnificent pages of animation magic, The Art of Pixar offers an unprecedented peek inside the creative process of some of Pixar’s greatest gems, a fine addition to our favorite sketchbooks of great creators.

HT @openculture; images via The Awesomer

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