March 2007


NYPL Digital Gallery is The New York Public Library’s image database, which has been developed to provide free and open online access to thousands of images.

The collection of Turn of the Century Posters is of interest to anyone curious about posters and their history. The total number of posters is more than 1200. The Digital Gallery plans to digitize the entire holding.

Hundreds of American posters printed from 1893 through the first years of the 20th-century. The collection represents the inception and heyday of magazine, book, and newspaper posters of the last decade of the 19th-century, and well into the 20th-century.


The Genealogy of Influence is described as “a visualization of the connections between the most influential writers, artists, philosophers, scientists, and mathematicians of Western culture” it aims to document and visualize the creative influences of great thinkers, scientists and artists.

Bittbox in Using Typography to create Texture has pointed out ways to use features in Illustrator to create designs based on typography. Pointing out that fonts can be converted to a graphic via the type menu then selecting create outlines Bittbox goes on to suggest a number ways these can be manipulated such a using the pathfinder and exploring the transparenecy options.

These are just a few of the possibilities because once the type is converted to graphic you can apply any of the manipulation features available in illustrator. Apart from all the regular design tricks like repeating text, layering text and contrasting scale there are options to under the effects menu particularly things like twist in the distort and transform options or try stroking text with interesting brushes and setting the transparency of the stroke. Simply put treat it like you would any other graphic element in your work and you will see text with a fresh eye.


Matt Brown is a painter who I have recently discovered via his blog.

After checking out his about page I think some of my students would find his story interesting.

His portfolio is online and his articles are interesting and well written. I also like his site design.

Matt brown describes his blog as

When I first started out as a self-employed artist I found it very difficult to find any practical information on how to survive and establish one’s self.
Consequently I made many mistakes.
So here is a growing list of posts and articles some of you may find useful. Let me know if there are any subjects you’d like me to talk about.

Oliver Reichenstein has written a very succinct piece on Understanding New Media summarising key Web2.0 concepts in ‘old media’ and ‘new media’

10 Things That Affect Your Google Blog Search Ranking by Muhammad Saleem of 901am points out that Google’s blog search engine ranks blogs by relevancy and goes on to list ways to improve your ranking.

Page layout
Studies at the Poynter Institute, Stanford University use eyetracking equipment to track and record the way online readers’ eyes scan news websites. They analyse the way people pause on areas of the screen in order to absorb information. Their study has found that surfers first focus first, ignoring photos and graphics totally, returning to them after reading the text. Steve Outing and Laura Ruel report the most common eye-movement patterns discovered What We Saw When We Looked Through Their Eyes . Their diagrams reveal on screen zones that are more important than others.

Eyetracking points the way to effective news article design

Whitespace by Mark Boulton

Colour Matters by J.L. Morton has provided information related to colour – how colour effects the body, brain, vision, how it is used in design and how computers display colour. The site approaches the subject on number of levels from several disciplines: physiology, psychology, philosophy, and art. This is a site well worth spending some time exploring.

Colour Primer by Gail Parker, of Cyberglitz covers issues such as browser safe colours, RGB vs CMYK, Bit Depth, Bits and Bytes, Indexed Colour, and Image File Compression

Colour Tutorial from Janet Lynn Ford of the colour worqx website covers all aspects of colour theory

Why study color theory? If you are involved in the creation or design of visual documents, an understanding of color will help when incorporating it into your own designs. Choices regarding color often seem rather mystical, as many seem to base decisions on nothing other than “it looks right.” Although often told I had an eye for color, the reason why some colors worked together while others did not always intrigued me and I found the study of color theory fascinating.

Learning to Use Color on Your Web Site by Ron Wilder

Communicate With Colour by Maura Yost

First impressions are lasting impressions, and Web designers have only a fleeting moment to engage a visitor. According to the Institute for Color Research, “all human beings make a subconscious judgment about a person, environment, or item within 90 seconds of initial viewing, and that between 62% and 90% of that assessment is based on color alone.”

More articles on web Design
Web Design is 95% Typography

Sitepoint’s Design Principles

Top Ten Mistakes in Web Design from Jakob Nielsen’s Alertbox.

A round up of tutorials that focus on using Grid systems in Web design

Photoshop Tutorials
7 basics by Jay Arraich covers the Photoshop interface, tools and palettes.

Working with Layers is a tutorial on a key feature in Photoshop – Layers

This Beginners’ Guide to Adobe Photoshop covers the basics including selection and manipulation in Photoshop

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