Monday, February 4, 2013

your turn #3

illustration adam lilfuchs fuchs


Anonymous said...

One of the images in the lecture that really impacted me was the De Humani corporis fabrica by Andrea Vesalius. The way that Vesalius has presented this image seems strange to me coming from a scientific point of view, usually when the human body is portrayed as a dissection the “model” is lying flat or standing straight, but in this depiction the subject is posing as if he was at a photo shoot or having his portrait painted; it seemed that Vesalius wished his cadavers to appear alive which is somewhat of an oxymoron. Also when researching this image I learned that in creating the Fabrica, Vesalius put to rest some of the common misconceptions about the anatomy of the human body originating from Galen, such as the idea that the major blood vessels of the body originated from the liver. Through this publication, which earned him much fame, he was also appointed as the personal physician to Emperor Charles V and would later be know as “the best physician in the world.” With the creation of this book Vesalius secured the place of anatomy as the most vital source of knowledge for a surgeon and physician, an idea many take for granted now but at this time was revolutionary.

Brittany Tyson

Anonymous said...

I was really enlightened by your map segment. I'm an art major and have always enjoyed painting and drawing more than other art media. Geography has also always interested me, I've wondered though why maps have been so visually appealing to me. Even though they're just a bunch of lines and names and shapes, I've always found that I could look at them forever. I haven't really looked at many maps from so long ago like the ones you showed us. I was fascinated by how much intricate detail and artistic thought was put into every single aspect of the map. I was also shocked by how accurate they were. While they were still obviously not correct, for the time period it was amazing how much they knew. If I liked maps before your lecture, I am fascinated by them now. It is so interesting to see the progress of geography through such an artistic and beautiful standpoint. I wish that such simple things like maps or menus were done with such artistic endeavor as they used to, I simply love how all the print and texts and maps from those times were always so decorated. This is something I have always enjoyed doing, even on something like my school notes.

Bailey Murray

Justine Fenner said...

I thought it was very interesting to see that the first printed version of the Declaration of Independence had revivals of Calson typeface. It is a smart choice of text because Calson is associated with a transitional moment between Gothic and Renaissance and modern. The Declaration of Independence was a transitional piece in United States history so it makes sense that its text represents transition. Also when I look at the layout, it makes sense in the context of what they are trying to say. The layout is very symmetric which symbolizes the ideas of equality and freedom in America. Also the fact that “A Declaration” is the largest font makes a very bold statement. I also though it was interesting to talk about the importance of print in spreading ideas and how the revolution could not have happened without it. This made me think of the Benjamin Franklin cartoon “Join or Die.” This cartoon was instrumental in spreading the ideas of Revolution and uniting the colonies.

Anonymous said...

During our last lecture, I found it fascinating to learn about William Playfair’s original chart design. I am currently enrolled in the infographics class in the School of Communication, and I am finding it very tedious. You spoke about magazines looking for the “cool factor” when representing information. This is the most difficult part about creating infographics. How do you make a chart that efficiently presents information while still catching the audience’s attention? I’m learning it is all about the styling, so it was very interesting to see the very first design.

I find this chart to be especially appealing while still accurately depicting the information you were meant to understand.
By Nigel Holmes for Time magazine

Although some designers might describe the art as “chartjunk,” I believe this is the kind of thing a magazine might use to achieve that “cool factor.”

You also might like to visit my professors website, The Functional Art.

-Ana Calderone

Anonymous said...

During the last lecture I became surprised in how much work was put into the designing of maps at the time and I really enjoyed how they were in a way works of art. I also found it interesting that even though maps are done differently (digitally vs. hand printed) today they are still really thought out even down to the color selection. When you mentioned that Baskerville is a typeface that has no feelings in the letters it made me think of Erik Spiekermann compared Helvetica to an army. He also explains how a good typeface has both contrast and rhythm to it. Finally I also enjoyed looking at William Blake’s illuminated manuscripts I find them to be very inspiring. As I researched more of his paintings, I learned that he described his technique as “fresco”. Blake used a combination of oil and tempera paints which were then mixed with chalks. He would then paint the design on a flat surface (copperplate) and would pull prints simply by pressing the sheet of paper against the damp paint. Blake’s would then finish the design by using ink and watercolor, making each print unique.

Erik Spiekermann link:

-Elina Diaz

Ariana Lubelli said...

Among the many things that stood out to me in this lecture, I really liked when you said, “A romantic is a person who looks at the past.” It has never been said to me before but thinking about it, that is extremely true. With more advancements in technology and the world digitally evolving, person-to-person communication is decreasing. The standards for people and love have been transformed by the technology of today. The simplicity of the past displays true romanticism because they were pure and self-created. Speaking of technology, you mentioned that one day the iPhone will, someday, just be a old news and there will be something even more high-tech created. I never really thought about that and it is crazy to ponder. A device that already seems incomprehensible will soon be outdated with something even more extravagant. It makes me wonder how the standards of people, love and behavior will be affected.

Ariana Lubelli

Anonymous said...

Caslon. Baskerville. Garamond.

I look at these names routinely as I scroll past lists and lists of typefaces-- whether I'm working on a 10-page essay, a poster, a brochure, or an ARH346 post. Many times, I find myself coming back to one of these three, after scrolling through hundreds.

I wondered how often does one stop and think about the individuals behind the typefaces? To whom is Trajan attributed*? Whom do we owe the "pleasure" of thanking for Comic Sans**? I truly enjoyed hearing about William Caslon, John Baskerville, and Claude Garamond.

For all the hundreds of thousands of typefaces out there, few can match the majesty of these three typefaces. Yes, type has evolved since-- Helvetica***, Gotham****, to name a few-- but I find these old style and transitional typefaces to be apexes of typographical design.

A few years back, I ran into Massimo Vignelli's Canon, a little book written by this Italian master of modern design to pass on advice to young aspiring designers. In the text, there is a section dedicated to typography where Vignelli talks about essential typefaces. Along with Bodoni*****, Futura******, Times Roman*******, Helvetica, and a couple of others, are Caslon, Baskerville, and Garamond.

Check out the full canon here.

Eddy Lopez


*Carol Twombly
**Vincent Connare
***Max Miedinger, Eduard Hoffmann
****Tobias Frere-Jones
*****Giambattista Bodoni
******Paul Renner
*******Victor Lardent


The GPS is such a useful tool in the world we live in that it is hard to imagine life without it. Somehow it seems to free us, and enable us to go where we please and do what we please. But is this really the case? Does freedom really come by simply getting from point A to point B or is freedom and liberty the journey? After our last class this question stayed in my mind. Before the GPS we were forced to learn cities, their street names, landmarks, and we weren’t forced to rely on anyone or anything to help us. Is that not more freeing? Furthermore, our journeys have become more GPS friendly, so that we avoid all back roads and travel mainly on highways. We loose so much of the beauty that surrounds in our lives led by the GPS that I’m forced to wonder whether we are really freed by it. Maps once allowed us to choose our journey highlighting landmarks and special sights, enticing us to discover the world around us. We were once allowed to get lost! Now we are given the most time effective route and like robots we follow the directions of an automated voice, getting lost and discovering the world is not an option. Freedom? I beg to differ.

Remi Wachtenheim said...

I thought our discussion last class about maps and cartography was very interesting. I had never realized that it was such an important aspect of the renaissance. While some of the borders were not completely accurate, I found the level of detail both surprising and beautiful. The fact that the cartographers were constantly redrawing and changing their maps shows a progressive movement towards their goal of achieving 100% accurate maps. As they map makers traveled they not only redrew their own borders, but also collaborated with other cartographers to increase the accuracy of their drawings. Without these maps, the wealthy merchants of the Renaissance that depended on direct trade routes would not have been successful.
The difference between the maps of the renaissance and the modern gps is astounding. While we have lost the majority of the beauty in map-making, the accuracy and immediate step-by-step directions are incomparable to the complex atlases of the renaissance. Maps have followed in the same overall direction of the world, towards efficiency and away from elegance.

Anonymous said...

Like many others have noted, I too was fascinated on your topic about the development of maps and how much they have evolved since medieval times. Cartographers of the past really put in creative thought into designing maps and can be seen like artistic works of art. Such art is never utilized in the present day and is rarely appreciated. In today's society, maps have lost it's artistic complex beauty but gained a more basic simplistic design that is easy to use. With the modern day GPS, googlemaps, mapquest, etc. all the hard work and calculations are easilly and effectively computed right at the push of a button. We are so reliant on this technology to take us to our desired destination and it is difficult to imagine a world without it. with that said, I can fully understand and appreciate past cartography and how it was drawn through physical discovery and exploration.

Tashina Arota

Anonymous said...

I was most interested on your thoughts about the design and creation of maps. Dating back to when it all began till even now in the digital age. I am fascinated by how early explorers were able to so accurately create world maps without the help of todays useful technology. Besides the obvious practical uses of maps there has always been tremendous thought put into the design of them. Even today as google creates there widely used maps, they are always considering colors, positioning, fonts, and more. This just goes to show you how important design is and how common and natural it is to the world we interact with. It is important for map makers (or GPS makers nowadays) to create an image that is both understandable and appealing.


Anonymous said...

One of the things that interested me from the last lecture was the discussion of infamous books which were persecuted. One of the ones mentioned was called “Communist Manifesto.” I found out it was published in 1848 in the UK by the political theorists Karl Marx and Friedrich Angels. It has since been recognized as one of the world's most influential political manuscripts. Karl Marx Marxism's basic theme is that the proletariat (the "exploited" working class of a capitalistic society) will suffer from alienation and will rise up against the "bourgeoisie" (the middle class) and overthrow the system of "capitalism." After a brief period of rule by "the dictatorship of the proletariat", the classless society of communism would emerge. The revolutionary wave went through Europe in 1848, but within a year the revolutions collapsed. Subsequently, traditional authorities found in The Communist Manifesto and its contents a good excuse for action against its authors. As a consequence, Marx and his wife were arrested and expelled from Belgium, Germany, and France, and his newspaper was suppressed. The Communist Manifesto still remains a landmark text: a work that continues to influence and provoke debate on capitalism and class.

Kateryna Gontaruk

Anonymous said...

In the last lecture, it was interesting to learn about the evolution of maps, from early cartography to the digital maps of today, such as Google Maps. I like how both then and now, maps are more than a useful tool; they are almost works of art. In the past, of course, maps were handmade, drawn and colored like artwork. Today, they are designed digitally, but continue to make use of color and other design elements in order to present geography in a way that makes sense; I had never considered the role good design plays in communicating information accurately and effectively. Another subject I really liked discussing last class is the relation between the content and the layout of a given publication, and the importance of functionality, since a publication’s material dictates how it is to function (its grids and layouts). The trivialization of charts and graphs was also very interesting, given that the way they are used in magazines and such today does not reflect its mathematical origin, but are manipulated to present information in a visually appealing, concise manner.

-Mayela Hernandez

Raquel Moyes said...

Our discussion about cartography and maps of the renaissance era was very interesting. Not only did it shed light into the artistic capabilities of this time, but also the vast knowledge of the entire world. It is incredible to see how much these people knew about the world so long ago and how similar our current day maps look to theirs. Piris Reis map of the Mediterranean basin shows incredible detail and a similar structure to our present day understanding of earth. Our discussion led to how dependent society now is on the availability of maps at our fingertips. I, personally, cannot get to the grocery store without first checking my navigation system. These renaissance maps display how advanced their cartography was at such an early time making it difficult to believe they did all the work before satellites and computers.

xiaodong chang said...

In the last class, I thought the development of map was very interesting. As long as the development of technology, the map has already replaced by GPS unconsciously. But I think both map and GPS are art. We can find very interesting design in both of them. Actually I think the designs in both of them are similar. They use different shapes, lines, colors, composition to express the same thing. I want to mention a painter, Piet Mondrian. He was an important contributor to the De Stijl art movement. In his painting, he uses a grid of vertical and horizontal black lines and the three primary colors to reflect cities and streets. In his painting New York City (1942), he use a complex lattice of red, blue, and yellow lines, occasionally interlacing to create a greater sense of depth. The aesthetic ideology of De Stijl influenced the painting, sculpture, structure, and design at that time even now.

Xiaodong Chang

James Ahearn said...

I enjoyed the segment of this lecture that spoke about the people who made the different type faces. I never thought about why fonts are named what they are, or the stories that may be behind them and hearing what people like Baskerville were able to do and the hardships they faced along the way was interesting. Additionally, I thought more into how these individuals who made different types, translated the bible had so many enemies. The flow of information from one culture to the next caused so much conflict and enabled such historical events such as the american and french revolutions. When people think about these revolutions, they think about what leaders did for the people to over throw them but never about how that flow of information reached such a large group of individuals, which was inevitably through print. The medium holds as much importance as the message.

James Ahearn