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Oh…the extent to which some people go for an original Halloween costume!
And I thought my husband went a tad overboard with building a Buzz Lightyear costume complete with blow-molded parts, for our then 5 year old son!
This is incredible!

” I really wanted to get the faceted geosphere look with wireframe.”
Says Eric Testroete of his ‘papercraft self portrait’.

I think he got the look he was going for…!

Check out the whole complicated process here.

My interest in Design Education has increased substantially since becoming both student and teacher at OCAD. I am interested in the way Design is changing and becoming a field that is no longer strictly about style and the creation of more ‘stuff’. I discovered a new school in Austin, Texas that is loosely based on Denmark’s KAOSPilota school for positive societal change, business creativity, and personal mastery.”  In short, a school for the 21st Century.

Austin Center for Design is the creation of Jon Kolko [Associate Creative Director at Frog Design in Austin]. He was becoming increasingly concerned with the state of Design education and concerns from previous students now disillusioned working in jobs they once dreamed about. “They’re doing the things that everyone was led to believe one does in design school, and now they’re questioning it,” he says. “They feel that they’re adding to the consumptive nature of the world.”

The core pillars of the Austin Center of Design are empathy, abductive reasoning, and rapid prototyping. Areas that were not even on the radar when I was a design student. Design Education is evolving. Finally. I see it in students that I teach, they care about how their role as future designers will affect the world, and seek ways to create positive change through their projects.

The world is changing at a rate that most institutions cannot keep up with, it is great to see people so passionate about education that they are willing to create new programs to keep up with these changes.

via: designObserver

“The crisp, clean, white planes, drawing clear influences from Richard Meier, are balanced with a splash of color offered by the roof membrane. The disciplined interiors offer relief to the eyes with a subtle yet intentional blue tone. Grade B+”

Just one of many critiques of kid’s livingroom forts. The writer gives brilliant commentary on the use of materials…“the project suffers from an inconsistent material palette attributed to coordination issues with the suppliers”, structural integrity…“While typically the stacked foundation technique leads to a stable and impressive base, this particular application seems dubious”, and efficiency of the planning…”The courtyard and formal entry are also well thought-out and provide a clear means of way-finding.”

I think we can all relate to these crude yet charming structures. My creative 5 year old transforms the livingroom weekly into a surprising new arrangement of cushions, sofas and chairs from every room in the house. Check out Part 1 and Part 2 of this great series.

via: The BUILDblog

“This is the PEN Story in stop motion. We shot 60.000 pictures, developed 9.600 prints and shot over 1.800 pictures again. No post production!”

Wow…it is so well done…I love a really good stop motion video!
It was shot using the Olympus Pen camera. Read more about the Pen Camera here.

Everyone’s favourite font….45 posters celebrating the classic typeface designed in 1957. For all you Font Fans, read about the history of Helvetica here.

via: desizn tech

Sitting in my *office* this morning, procrastinating on writing that 10 page paper, I discovered the ultimate time sucker!
This is a pretty amazing drawing tool developed by Dr. Doob [Ricardo Cabello], a designer and developer who has come up with a ‘procedural web based drawing tool’. So far there are 10 pens, but more may be added.

Here is a little sample of the 5 minutes I spent on it. Add a tablet and pen….a bit more time and the results could be far more impressive! Try it out for yourself here.

via: QBN

I am not a science person…that is not a surprise I am sure. But, I have to admit that being a student in such a diverse program has sparked a certain curiousity about many things that may come under this topic.

Slime Mold for one. I didn’t know anything about it before last Fridays’ Understanding Systems class. Apparently, Slime Mold is a very intelligent organism despite lacking a brain. I won’t try to describe the scientific and biological traits of the slime mold, read about it here. So, where am I going with this? Scientists recently conducted a study using slime mold to illustrate the amazing capabilities of this ‘creature’.  They re-created the patterns of cities around Tokyo, and charged slime mold to figure out the most efficient way to get around the city. They designed the subway system, and amazingly, the results were almost identical to that of the complicated system designed by a team of engineers over a significant period of time. It took slime mold 26 hours by the way to achieve the same results. Study coauthor Mark Fricker of the University of Oxford, “In contrast, the slime mold has no central brain or indeed any awareness of the overall problem it is trying to solve, but manages to produce a structure with similar properties to the real rail network.” Read More

“When presented with oat flakes arranged in the pattern of Japanese cities around Tokyo, brainless, single-celled slime molds construct networks of nutrient-channeling tubes that are strikingly similar to the layout of the Japanese rail system, researchers from Japan and England report Jan. 22 in Science. A new model based on the simple rules of the slime mold’s behavior may lead to the design of more efficient, adaptable networks, the team contends.”

This new model based on the behaviour of slime mold, may very well “lead to the design of more efficient, adaptable networks, the team contends.”

Amazing.

Science News
Wired

Images: Science/AAAS

It really has never occurred to me…even as a Designer, that the common, everyday traffic sign could and should be re-designed. This is something that the inventor Gary Lauder thought would be a good idea. He unveiled a traffic sign that instructs drivers to “take turns” at an intersection. The TED blog explains:

Half a stop and half a yield, the sign gives each driver a clear indication of how to behave. Below the red “Take Turns” shield is a small sign reading, “If Cars Are Waiting, Please Stop and Alternate.” And if there are no cars waiting, just blow on through. (No more stopping at red lights at 4am, on a country road, when there’s no one around for miles.)

It seems so much more civilized than ‘merge’…or ‘stop’…kinder even. And haven’t we been told since childhood to take turns?  We really don’t hear it so much as adults, but maybe we should.

Read more: http://www.good.is/post/a-new-traffic-sign-take-turns/#ixzz0fcZ2IUzz

I graduated from Design school way back in 1990. That’s a long time ago…fast forward 20 years, and I am back. This time studying for my Masters of Design, in an attempt to one day be in a career in a field that didn’t really exist when I was in University and College those many years ago. And wow,  have things changed….students have changed, technology has changed [we now have technology!], and courses have changed.

This video demonstrates the way in which most Universities have not progressed with these changes…I like to think that OCAD is not one of those schools. Design and Art school needs to progress with the times. Our classes are small, our teachers know our names…and we don’t sit in theatres with 100’s of nameless faces. A really interesting look at what education often looks like outside of our school.

thanks Hugo!

An inspirational call for entries video…to launch the 2nd Annual Rethink Communications $18,000 Scholarship for Langara College, and the Communication and Ideation program. Sounds like a really interesting program.

“To enter the contest, submit a black hard cover sketchbook containing interesting ideas showcasing your creativity. Winner will be selected by Rethink according to the following criteria: clarity, relevance, fresh thinking, as well as quality of ideas, craft, and execution.

Would love to hear from anyone who enters!

via: Ads of the World

@jjthinkinbig tweets