re:thinking re:design

I believe this blog is in for a refresh. I’ve loved blogging about design, seeking and sharing the fantastic work of others (and also the work we’ve done that I am proud of) and connecting with studios around the world. However, I’ve also loved blogging about coffee, and the unexpectedly fun and sometimes overwhelming project of collecting and curating 1000 cups on Coffee|Served Daily.

I’ve transitioned Coffee|Served Daily to Caffeinated|By Design, where I am attempting to connect the dots between coffee, design, art, books, poetry, nature and even painted elephants (because we all need a little painted elephant in our day). While I am not quite ready to shut this blog down, I invite you to come visit me over there. I hope you’ll hang around and share in some daily caffeinated (and designer) inspiration.


coffee|served daily, or an overly caffeinated side project

In January 2011 I had this crazy idea. I thought I could drink, photograph, collect and curate 1000 cups of coffee. I called it Coffee|Served Daily as it grew out of my 2010 Project 365, Life|Served Daily (and my obvious, and perhaps slightly disturbing, need to have a constant stream of side projects).  Today I made it!

I learned about coffee, connecting, and the power of the internet. I thought this would be for a small group of friends, but somehow the project spread and people from all over the world sent me pictures of their coffee.  It’s been awesome (and also frustrating, overwhelming, delightful, delicious, inspiring, energizing and fun).

I wrote more about what I learned throughout the process on today’s post. Check it out here. And next time you want to chat over coffee, you know who to call.

card tricks

We relocated our studio in January and it’s taken until March to get our new business cards. This is the fifth card design we’ve had in our studio’s history, including vellum stock, letterpress, and  rounded corners. We’ve always loved cards with a tactile quality and a sense of surprise (although I do remember a client taking a pair of scissors to my two-sided-letterpress-Euro-oversized card and cutting it to fit in his rolodex…heh).

We did the new cards through MOO, and chose their LUXE line with a seam of blue color between the layers of  Mohawk Superfine paper. We printed ten different design/work quotes on the back.  I believe this is the fourth set of cards we’ve done through Moo (the others were all photo-based designs) and I highly recommend them for service, quality and price–plus packaging that delights the designer in all of us.

the merchandising of a president

Last week I was cruising around the internet and I found this poster, which very clearly wanted to be pinned.  And so I did.

But on my way to Pinterest, I discovered the home of the poster, Now I am well aware that Barack (no secret, I refer to him as my boyfriend, and while I had several years of disappointment, I am still (STILL) hopeful) Obama is the President who understands branding. In fact, I started this blog in 2009 with a piece on the branding of his campaign. But this store blew me away.

Perhaps one needs to be a California liberal who appreciates the collaboration of message, typography and image…but this is really something. We have gone beyond stickers and signs folks. We’re talking iPhone cases, doggie bandanas, yoga pants, soy candles, grilling accessories, and a designer store called Runway to Win (Tory Burch tote, Jason Wu T shirt).

Of course, I was delighted to see one of my favorite coffee mugs (thank you Ann) on the site as well. I think I will pass on the Joe Biden mug (though cleverly titled, Cup of Joe).

Whether you vote for my boyfriend, or the other one, you have to admit, this is a change…and I think one that is designed with thoughtfulness and a dash of humor. Nicely done.

Why I am going to keep pinning on Pinterest

There has been a recent flurry of copyright controversy over my new favorite website, Pinterest. The issue is (that is, I think this is the issue), that Pinterest makes it so easy for people to “pin”, without a photographer’s permission, and therefore (I presume), steal. The terms of use are a little messy, and if you read every word, scary. One could infer that one would be sued for well-intentioned, inspiration-based acts of pinning, spurred on by frightening memories of 12-year old girls being sued for downloading their favorite music on Napster a few years ago.

Seriously. No joke.

This is what I know:

Our work has been stolen by strangers, ex-employees, colleagues and other agencies. This includes B.I. (before internet). This year I found one of our logos on another firm’s website. Sometimes I contact folks, sometimes I let it go. Depends on the day of the week, my mood and what I am guessing is their intent. In the case of the wandering logo, our client was a nonprofit and the agency was doing good work for them. It wasn’t high profile, and I didn’t do anything. However, if I ever meet them at a cocktail party, I might mention it…

The more open we are to sharing, the more open we are to stealing.  That is, if we choose to look at it that way. I care tremendously about copyright for designers, illustrators, typographers, photographers and writers. I judge people (harshly) who print out photos from the internet and use them for presentation. I make my clients buy their own fonts (and provide a lecture about how typographers design fonts and if we want good typography, we must pay for it). I have three blogs and provide a credit, and a link if possible, for every image I post. Sometimes I miss something. But I am aware and try to be a good steward of creative license.

Back to Pinterest. Pinterest is doing something new and exciting. They are making it easy for people to find and share inspiration. From what I hear, they aren’t making money at it yet. There are some awkward things about the site (count me as one who would like to have private boards), but the team there makes improvements on a daily basis. And I have to say, it’s my happy place. I visit several times a day and have connected with friends and relatives over shared DIY projects, coffee photos, inspirational quotes and recipes. I have a board just for the color blue. And I have one of places that make me swoon. Some of the pins are repinned from others. Some are my own internet finds.

In almost every case, I have a credit or link to the original creator, or at least a link that will eventually lead back to the creator. But not always. I’ve never taken a photo from a photographer’s site, but I have repinned images without credits.

The internet is a messy place. Pinterest is working on the issue. There are ways to mark your work so it can’t be pinned. One can also place a watermark on every photo. There are issues with collaborative boards, like Behance, where they make it easy to pin a contributor’s image, without the contributor’s permission. Agreed, messy. New ideas are messy. Artists, more than anyone, should understand that. It will take time to figure it out.

In the meantime, I believe the power of the internet is in the opportunities it provides for us to create, share, connect and inspire each other. Pinterest does that. With joy. And I believe, with good intent. I don’t choose to live in fear, protecting my ideas so no one can steal them. Or to be fearful of seeking and sharing new ideas, concerned that I will get in trouble.  (I am dangerous that way…I also let my kids eat dirt when they were small, believing that the roughage and a few germs would be good for them.) I am going to believe that most people want to do the right thing. And I will try harder to do the right thing. I will take the extra time to research the photos I pin, and to include the credit and link. And if I can’t find it, I won’t use it. Of course, if I were ever approached and asked to remove something, I would do so immediately.

Let’s keep sharing, and pinning responsibly. And let’s keep encouraging folks like Ben Silbermann and his team to imagine and invest in new ideas and technologies. This is today’s issue, but there will be more. So let’s keep talking, ok?

By the way, come visit me at Pinterest…I’m Kim Tackett.

it starts from the bottom up

Timeline of branding process…in table top, linear progression.  Of course, we all know it’s a little messier than this (I would include a few more scraps reams of paper with words on it, and something to show the research…and lots more coffee, tempered with some wine). Clever and thought-provoking, for sure. What would your table include?

Source: Oneeighty Creative.

what she said

London designer Anneke Short’s design blog recently featured a set of posters titled Confessions of a Designer.  So true and pretty funny. A few of my favorites:

Thanks to Quipsologies for the the original link.