Archives for posts with tag: transportation

Few automotive designs are as iconic as the Volkswagen Beetle. Dubbed the “people’s car”, Volkswagen has gone on to produce some 22 million units, making the Beetle the longest-running and most-manufactured car of a single platform in history. Indonesian sculptor Ichwan Noor capitalizes on the Beetle’s recognizability with his striking Beetle Sphere and Beetle Box sculptures. Noor’s body of work is comprised of a good deal of pieces that focus on man-made transportation, so it’s really no surprise that he chose to morph the unmistakable VW for these particular works. Though these sculptures are not simply warped car bodies, Noor certainly creates that illusion. Instead, he relies on authentic and fabricated parts… crafting cast metal components, and thoughtfully displaying some of the car’s most recognizable features. Quite a feat, considering these are not computer generated (like these), but physical objects. Wow. The result is really something to behold.

Via ichwannoor.com and Wikipedia

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Just this week, Uber unveiled a global rebranding that not only strayed a bit from its recognizable logotype, but also introduced a rather detached set of app icons. Can’t say that we suffered from extreme design envy over the previous Uber logotype, but it was fine. While their new logotype seems like a step in the right direction (thicker letterforms and tighter composition for maximum readability), the highbrow concept behind the app icons and larger identity seems rather misguided, and will surely be lost on most. Yes, Uber’s official statement references “bits and atoms” (“The unique aspect of Uber is that we exist in the physical world. When you push a button on your phone, a car moves across the city and appears where you are. We exist in the place where bits and atoms come together. That is Uber. We are not just technology but technology that moves cities and their citizens.”) In theory, the thought process behind the concept, which is customized identities for specific markets that aim to draw colors and patterns from “art, architecture, tradition, old and new fashion, textiles, the environment”, is a thoughtful one. But from a branding perspective, it seems to dilute the impact of the Uber brand as a whole. And that doesn’t even address that larger concern that the icon itself is not identifiable in any way as Uber. Though we had issues with the previous icon employing a dissimilar “U” letterform from the Uber logotype, at least it was just that, a letter U. This icon, or rather set of icons – one for riders, another for divers – make no effort to resemble the new Uber logotype in any way. Why abandon the “U”? Our view is not the basis of some pretentious design theory, but simple human nature. In our estimation, the biggest stumble here was not hiring branding experts for the task. We are not knocking in-house designers… they are often immensely talented with an invaluable familiarity and investment in a given brand. But this was surely not a 12+ months-long task meant to be spearheaded by a non-designer CEO. There are experts in the field who do this sort of thing, we are among them. We hear the cry among our peers: “Help us help you!” Sure, the presentation of Uber’s new identity is slick, but the principals behind the design concept as a whole indicate a lack of design leadership. An unfortunate case of just looking pretty, but not meeting a brand’s true potential.

Visuals via Uber

 

 

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Milan-based designer/illustrator/author Gerald Bear seems to have a bunch of questions in that tremendously creative brain of his. And he answers many visually in his ongoing series Unconventional Heroes. What if all Doc Brown could afford was a Fiat (instead of a DeLorean)? What if Michael Knight did his life’s work from a talking VW Beetle? What if the Mystery Van was a Ford Thames van? Unconventional is a great adjective to describe these fantastic illustrations by Bear. He taps into not only a love of automobiles/transportation, but also a fascination with pop culture, and of course, the art of illustration. Bear marries these altogether in a pleasantly unexpected series that keeps us wanting more. Keep ‘em coming!

Via Behance

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Self-described one-man studio Neil Stevens has an appreciation for vintage type, as do many of us designers. There’s something pure about it, free from extraneous effects or trendy design devices. This collection of flight tag prints by the London based designer/illustrator captures the essence of a bygone design era (and would make a great inspirational addition to our studio walls, I might add). In his own words: “Recently I stumbled on a lovely set of old airline baggage tags and was amazed at the variety in designs produced since the 1950s. There was something about the now iconic, easily recognizable three letter abbreviations of the city destinations, and the small surrounding details that I thought would look great blown up and on a wall. They often avoided logos, had no advertising, and were purely just the information you needed.” Prints available here.

Via crayonfire.co.uk

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Teaming with ad agency Mother New York, BikeNYC recently launched this stellar outdoor campaign, calling attention to and promoting biking as a better transportation choice. We love the aerial perspective, tongue-in-cheek tone and impeccable Photoshop work.

Via mothernewyork.com

For our fellow map geeks out there, this subway map-style diagram of U.S. interstate highways is not only attractive, but quite useful too. What an excellent idea, beautifully executed by Australian designer Cameron Booth. Upon close examination, it’s clear that this is not just an exercise in aesthetics, but it’s a pretty darn accurate map too.

Via cambooth.net

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