Archive for the design Category

Public 2.0 was yesterday

Posted in artwork, conferences, creative practice, design, links, research with tags on 22/07/2011 by sync24

Public 2.0 was yesterday and was really interesting. Overall, the content was more relevant to certain elements of my teaching than anything else i do, though David Gauntlett, who chaired the morning session was flyering for his new book: Making is Connecting
The content looks too relevant to miss, so i’ve bought it on amazon.

anyway, here’s my brief notes and decent links from the day:
Ian Forrester talked about working in the R&D dept at the BBC and how he shared most of his life via social networking… he talked about ‘self tracking’ and ‘the quantified self’. i don’t think i could open up that much, but it’s useful for work.

Simon Rogers from the Guardian gave a brilliant presentation about curating data and ‘data journalism’.
he pointed out that one of the first people to visualise complicated data was Florence Nightingale…
there’s more relevant-to-work stuff here:
Google Fusion tables appear to be the way forward for getting my students to do decent data viz stuff:
here’s a good example of things he showed: Afghanistan war: every death mapped
he also reminded us that good design really matters, and that “The only questions left will be answered by computers, because only computers will know what to ask.” James Cameron 1969.

up next was Roland Harwood from, among other things, he mentioned his old boss, Chris Powell, at NESTA pointed out that ‘Networking’ was only one letter away from ‘Not working’, only 1% of people who watch video on YouTube actually post videos on YouTube, and something like 9% do something with what they have watched… which i thought were interesting stats. he also quoted J. G. Ballard “The future reveals itself through the periferal.”
after lunch Drew Hemment from Future Everything spoke about what FE does. he wasn’t feeling too well, but still gave an interesting presentation. its good to see how far something which i remember going to in 2000 becuase Merzbow (i fell asleep during the gig) was playing at has gone. he’s written some interesting stuff which i have stashed away as pdfs somewhere… here’s a link to his texts on his website:

Ruth Catlow from furtherfield talked about artists using social media and message lists. the idea of DIWO (do it with others), rather than DIY was interesting – here’s a link to a search: Its about ‘adapting the DIY ethos to work together with the relationships (between people, machines, their behaviours and stuff) made possible by networks.’

Rob Meyers then talked about Art Open Data, but i was feeling the effects of crap air-con by then, and was struggling to remain interested. here’s his website though, something to have a look through:

The final section of the day began with Santiago Oritz showing projects he works on creating data viz stuff. he works with Simon Rogers on stuff for the Guardian, along with building ways for anyone to experiment with open data.
he showed which is an amazing way to get started with data viz and i will have to use that with my teaching.
here’s his other link: which has some pretty amazing stuff on it!

we were also shown the work for the data art exhibition which was taking place in the gallery next door. Harry Robbins and Gavin Baily (i think) talked through various projects here: other things to look at which expanded from this were geocoding wikipedia articles with google maps, and newstraces here:

Overall, the conference was really interesting, although not directly related to the content of this blog, it was good to see people from different areas brought together to talk about how they used data visualisation. anyway, i found out about a decent looking book and, looking at the links above, there’s some great stuff to take into my teaching next year.


mini stuff

Posted in artwork, cd, creative practice, design, music, stickers on 22/08/2010 by sync24

had a tidy up this weekend and last weekend, and remembered i have about 50 mini, 3 inch, blank CDRs from about 10 years ago when i did my MA course (the idea there was to create a cd with music and an application which the buyer could play with. ‘feels very familiar!).
anyway, i’ve been looking into these again. they are still a popular-ish format (this wikipedia article mentions them being used by indie artists for their releases, sounds familiar again…). there’s some nice cshell packaging available for them now (here:, and these two (, offer various other boxes for them too.
i have about 4 printable megadata discs and around 45 unbranded discs, al in jewel cases – though the unbranded ones are larger than normal and have ‘MINI DISC’ embossed in the cd tray, i don’t like that.
these discs cost me about £60 i seem to remember… now you can by 100 for less than £20.
so, what i’m thinking is to do a few short runs of music (droneface for a start), and just give them to some friends etc. i could get some of these cshell cases and i’ve also been thinking about getting som stickers and mini cards done via
oh, and here’s a good looking website for a company in bristol who do all sorts of packaging:

Sci-Fi book sites

Posted in artwork, design, links, music with tags , , , , on 21/08/2010 by sync24

here’s two good looking Sci-Fi book websites:

Don Maitz Catchworld tribute video

Posted in artwork, creative practice, design, gear, music, sci-fi book, video with tags , , , on 21/08/2010 by sync24

i just finished a recording which i have also added the Don Maitz image to in FCP.
it’s up on youtube, so here’s the finished thing…

had a good fiddle about with the audio, and managed to get some interesting feedback loops going on:
the Roland SPV-355 (pitch to voltage synth) was being used as an FX send and received raw, pitched down (from the Boss RPS-10 Pitch Shifter), and Ringmodded/AutoPanned DroneLab audio. i also had my MFOS Weird Sound Gen being modulated by the SH09. all this was being fed into the Space Echo and the Stereo Flanger, with a little bit of JX-3P for additional undercurrents…
as i was setting all this up, i really did have the image in mind that i have used in the video, so i’d say this was, to me, proper space music.

now i need to end my day with another space movie (watched Sunshine last night, could do with Event Horizon tonight…)

here’s the track on soundcloud:

another sleeve design fiddle

Posted in artwork, creative practice, design, research with tags , on 21/08/2010 by sync24

…not that i’ve really done much here (and i cannot believe it was almost a year ago…!), ‘just replaced the main image from the previous one i did (in this post).
the main image was scanned from ‘masterpieces of science fiction art, tomorrow and beyond’ edited by ian summers (image on p45, by don maitz from about 1978 for a book called ‘catchworld’ by chris boyce).
here’s the book cover:
amazon link
here’s the image on the artists website:

what this has also got me thinking (from looking through these old books to make the scans – chris foss, roger dean etc.), is that after all the space pictures i used to draw as a child, in a way, i wish i’d kept it up and was doing space paintings now…!
like this fella:
still, plenty of time for that.
it also got me thinking about the richard prince ‘nurse’ paintings…
and the sonic youth, ‘sonic nurse’, lp sleeve:

anyway,i’m going to begin designing a proper logo for these fiddles – i need to make a sound library lp, so ned to get in to the swing of that style…