Here’s my latest iPad drawing, based on a photograph of my plastic Dymo Label Buddy. (Don’t you just love products named “buddy?” Say, the Truck ‘n Buddy, or the Backspin Buddy.)
Don’t let puppydog-sounding products like Label Buddy lead to to think Dymo a johnny-come-lately to the punch tape label market, no. For the Label Buddy is merely a wee descendant of the 60’s era steel Dymo Mite, which could brain opponents with a single swing of your wrist (and possibly remove their heads at the same time, since it cut labels not with a serrated edge but with an open rusty blade).
I got rid of my Dymo Mite. You know what they say about having a weapon in the home, you just may use it on yourself by mistake. Label Buddy is more my speed.
Some of you out there in the typosphere are posessed of drawing skills; I’m not among you, to my sincere regret. Thankfully (oh, the irony) there is, these days, a digital crutch for every weakness (thank you, GPS) and now, with an iPad and Adobe Ideas, you too can draw a pretty good typewriter based on tracing over a photograph, and you won’t even need to scan it when you’re finished. The only hitch? Coming up with more money than God in order to buy one.
I have a feeling most typospherians would do the math on how many fountain pens a single iPad would be worth, and would then take a pass.
Occurred to me just now as I ambled around the typosphere that it’s high season for the type-in: they’re happening every weekend, just about. Was going to warn those of you meeting up in bars not to drink and type, but I guess it worked out for Hemingway.
Mike Rohde does some cool stuff with handwritten fonts that I’d like to imitate. Problem is, my handwriting basically comes in a single flavor. Ever tried to change your handwriting? It’s hard.
Somewhere in recent days I read online that our brain processes characters the same way it processes pictures, because they are pictures. So each character of the alphabet is a picture we learned how to draw, and if we want to change our handwriting, we have to learn how to draw each character another way.
(As an aside, I think I modeled my handwriting after my dad‘s. I used to love to see his notes on graph paper, where he used to map out new arrangements for the house or yard with his drafting pencils:)
Consider me deeply ignorant on the matter of typography, a subject that, for all I can tell, you need to be a professional designer to understand, although this site looks like a good start. All I know is, it would be cool to have typewritery handwriting. Don’t you think?
Richard Polt has you covered if you want typewriter fonts for your computer, but here’s my first try at handwriting a couple typewriter typefaces, which was about as easy as learning to draw some new stuff. (Not easy.)
The lower case letters g and a on the Lettera typeface in particular just seem like foreign characters to me, like something I might find in Kana Can Be Easy:
Does anyone handwrite g and a that way? I’m going to need tons of drawing practice before I get the hang of it.
I have remained interested in the topic of visual note-taking lately, and have been following the work of Sunni Brown, co-author of Gamestorming, who makes a living as a ‘graphic recorder,’ or someone who helps businesses visualize information with infographics. How cool would that job be?
She was part of a panel on visual note-taking alongside writer/poet/artist Austin Kleon (whom I posted about the other day) at South by Southwest Interactive this year, and in the panel they gave out these cool looking booklets on the concept of taking visual notes. Several pages from the booklet are shown in the slide deck (see the panel on visual note-taking link for the deck).
I was particularly inspired by Sunni’s “6 fundamentals of visual note taking,” so I took the time to transcribe her slide for me to refer to:
I think this concept overall is highly relevant to analog culture: it’s visual, it’s human, it’s handmade, it’s something digital culture and machines can’t quite accomplish. It has a place in the analog blogosphere, even if that place is just right here in the backwaters of Strikethru.net. More to come.
Here is an interview with Sunni Brown that talks about the impact of visual learning.
Recently I bought the Ed Emberley book Make a World (does anyone remember these from childhood? That is, if you’re old? I do), and these are a few drawings I have done since getting the book. Going to re-write this post to enhance its awesomeness later today, but just wanted to get these posted for now. Note: if you have kids, you have to get one or more of his books.
The following pencast is about How To Steal Like An Artist (And 9 Other Things Nobody Told Me, written by Austin Kleon. Read it first. It’s great. You’ll thank me. My lousy post that follows is entirely optional reading.
Austin Kleon has a lovely blog with an entire category about visual note-taking. There’s also a visual note-taking 101 presentation he and some other people gave at SXSW this year.
I’ve been talking about the Don Moyer book on this same topic recently and really recommend that as well. Much of his book is available online as a handout from a talk he gave last year at STC (click his name on that page for the handout), but I bought the entire Napkin Sketch Workbook in print and love it.
Here’s the post where I talk about the drawing business books. It’s an intriguing concept. I especially recommend the book by Don Moyer.