Go Canada!

Canada owns the podium and takes home 14 gold medals - the most gold medals by country this year, AND the most gold medals by any country EVER at a Winter OR Summer Games.

If these tiles could talk...

Excellent photo essay on the Toronto Transit tiles.
These tiles, along with the with slick Toronto Subway font, make riding the subway a visual treat.
I ♥ the TTC.

February flourishes

Excellent lecture last night on the Raffia Initials last night, hosted by the Type Club of Toronto. The Raffia initials designed by Henk Krijger and issued by the Typefoundry Amsterdam in 1952. They were recently digitized by Patrick Griffin at Canada Type.
See all the initials here

Spelling is fun!

Vintage spelling book, circa 1961. So perfect.
(Click to enlarge pages)

CR rebranded

Back in my university days, I created this logo for my personal business cards:
While I liked the square shape and the rough, hand-drawn aesthetic, it was due for a refresh.

This is one idea I came up about a year ago:
This logo seemed much cleaner and type-savvy, but it lacked that *pop* I was looking for.

Another more recent idea: geometric and simple, fluid curves and a modern flavour (with a hint of Art Deco and the Bauhaus):

But, here is the final logo I will be incorporating into my branding and business cards:
Bold, geometric, and dynamic interplay between positive and negative space - I think this one will work just fine. :)
p.s. Lesson learned: You are your hardest client.

To hold his eyes...

Vintage goodness in Roncesvalles antique stores today

Ads fit for a Queen (or two)

*Brilliant* advertising for Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland at Queen Subway station, Toronto
Movie opens March 5... can't wait!

A big fonty day

Just received my copy of Learn FontLab Fast by Leslie Cabarga:
How perfect is this:

I think I'm officially read to start designing fonts. Stay tuned...

Garlic update!

Gaga takes UK

Lady Gaga at the Brit Awards Tuesday night, where she won all 3 awards she was nominated for. Her performance was dedicated to the late Alexander McQueen. RIP.

New painting

I've always wanted a painting or a poster or a print of the complete alphabet, but I've never been happy with what's out there. And with my side project, twenty-six in fifty-two, I've been thinking of letters constantly! When I walked into Curry's art supply store a few weeks ago, I was inspired by this 3' x 3' wooden panel canvas — it reminded me a scenic theatre flat.
So I started drafting out how I wanted this piece to look:
I knew that I wanted to incorporate alphabet, squares, and the inherent mechanics oh the letters (similar to Durer Caps). I also wanted to create a system-based geometric sans serif, inspired by a couple of my favourites: LTC 20th Century and Toronto Subway. But above all, I wanted it to be simple and neutral — something I could look at every day.
Here's the graphite drawing on wood (click to enlarge):
Here's with a ghost-like white wash inside the enclosed characters:
Some outlined squares added:

And, the final result:
Originally, I thought I would be more liberal with revealing and redrawing the mechanical lines and shapes, but I opted for this less-cluttered format. I'm going to let it live on the wall for a while and see if it needs more.

(Special thanks to everyone who offered advice and feedback along the way!)


“Distractivity is what you’re doing when you get distracted from what you should be doing. It’s generally what you want to do, often what you need to do, and arguably, what you’ll do best.”

XOXO for good design

A quick follow-up to my previous post on Xococava; I forgot about all of these lovely free promo materials they had. Just as delicious as the chocolate!


The type gauge I ordered almost 6 weeks ago arrived in the mail. Hooray!
Thanks to Tanya for pointing me in the right direction.
Get yours here!

One week later

Notice the little white roots...

Weekend fashion find

Perfect mid-calf riding boots by Toronto designer Philip Sparks
From his website:
"...Sparks developed his sharp tailoring skills and an interest in period-inspired silhouettes, fabrics and techniques in the costume departments of the National Ballet of Canada, the Canadian Opera Company and the Stratford Festival of Canada. Sparks draws inspiration from vintage photographs, unique materials and classic techniques to create collections that respect fashion's traditions but continue to push menswear forward."