Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Love for type: it's hereditary

Some people are destined to be teachers, others experts in the migration habits of a particular species of moth found in South America. Me? I believe I was destined to be a designer and develop a passion for type. My grandfather, Alf Pausey, was a small business owner and typesetter for 50 years. I grew up playing cubbie houses with my sisters in and around giant stacks of paper and with the sweet smell of fresh, thick ink in my nostrils. Poppa got up early every morning, donned his blue overalls and worked hard all day manually setting lead type and printing it on his big, loud rhythmically thumping letterpress machines. I remember the big guillotines and the women in the shop with their rubber thimbles for collating the pages of client booklets. These pictures are of a letterset collection of his and an opening of one of his favourite type books, which he's given to me. Thanks, Poppa... for a heritage I'm so glad to have.

Monday, July 26, 2010

V is for...

We were recently invited to be a part of a collaborative project organised by one of our favourite printers, Digital Press. The initiative involves 26 Sydney designers, each one responsible for a different letter of the alphabet. Here's what we submitted.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Design in Words

Throughout our creative lives we have sifted through everything to select what we thought best. We sifted through materials to find those for which we have the closest affinity. We sifted through colors, textures, typefaces, images, and gradually we built a vocabulary of materials and experiences that enable us to express our solutions to given problems - our interpretations of reality. It is imperative to develop your own vocabulary of your own language - a language that attempts to be as objective as possible, knowing very well that even objectivity is subjective.

I love systems and despise happenstance. I love ambiguity because, for me, ambiguity means plurality of meanings. I love contradiction because it keeps things moving, preventing them from assuming a frozen meaning, or becoming a monument to immobility. As much as I love things in flux, I love them within a frame of reference - a consistent reassurance that at least and at last I am the one responsible for every detail.

And that is why I love Design.

Beautiful thoughts by Massimo Vignelli from The Vignelli Canon

On the ball

I have developed an interest recently in fonts with 'ball terminals', having used script font 'Bellevue' recently in some body cream packaging for One Seed organic fragrances. It led me to the discovery of Jessica Hische's font, 'Buttermilk' – a bold and feminine script typeface which can be purchased from

I've seen a couple of reviews out there about font designer Jessica Hische, where people seem to have found themselves in an expected state of delighted euphoria, having explored this particular young woman's portfolio. Her work is inspiring in every way: it makes me want to own it, see more, be better and somehow one day make her my best friend. She produces a constantly rich and quirky stream of new ideas – daily, in fact, at her blog ( where she offers the world a new drop cap every day to enjoy.

Jessica's portfolio is online at

Monday, July 19, 2010

Off the wall

Anke Klevjer, a good friend and talented artist, is currently living in Varanasi, India, where she is running art workshops, helping out in the local community and dedicating her time and creativity to decorating the walls of this ashram. Incredible attention to detail... something we miss sometimes when we're on our Macs, churning through projects to meet deadlines!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Allen Consulting Interior Graphics

We recently completed this office mural graphic for client Allen Consulting. Mei was responsible for design; she hand-drew the illustration, scanned it and then applied the gorgeous textures and colours which are perfect for this interior.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Pretty picture

I took this picture in Tasmania when I was there for a visit a month or so ago. Applied a Photoshop action set to give it a vintage film effect. I have a thing for carousel and playground horses.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

From the 'burbs...

For lovers of their particular corner of Sydney, check out these typographic, topographic prints designed by our dear friend Greg Miller of Burbia. He's had these in the pipeline for a while, and has just launched his website. Now we can hop online and order these neat posters with a few easy clicks of the ol' mouse. More at: