I wonder how long this new Pepsi will last…

More swooshy

A fair amount of pixels have been spilled over the new Pepsi rebranding. The mark has even won Top Dishonor from the Brand New folks, while others like it, for what it’s worth.

The more I thought about how I felt about the new identity, the more ridiculous I felt about having any regard or feelings at all.

It’s soda. Headlines declare a financial meltdown threatens the entire planet and here I am considering the choice of thin san-serif.

But feeling I did, and I determined that this makeover is not very manly. What I haven’t determined is if this lack of testosterone is good, bad, or even valid.

It’s definitely hard to imagine a meaty paw at the end of a thick furry forearm reaching for a bottle of this after a hard day of work. But as the retro typeface starts to fade away, maybe there’s a real winner hidden in this rebranding.

Imagine a can with hardly any words at all, just the smiling mark, required ingredients and nutritional information. What’s manlier than no words at all? Feelings are reduced to guttural sounds, arm waving and head nods.

This totally aligns with Pepsi’s Frank Cooper (his title includes VP, portfolio and brands) as quoted in an Advertising Age article about the new look, “We felt like, as we move out of this traditional mass marketing and mass distribution era into today’s culture, there’s an opportunity to bring humanity back, both in terms of the design but also in the way we engage consumers,” he said. “By making the logo more dynamic and more alive.”

I don’t know about all that mass marketing stuff, but the word that sticks out for me is dynamic! Which means the new Pepsi can work with flannel in the lumberyard or on the red carpet with evening-wear.

In the article they speculate on the cost of the new logo (north of a million), to the cost of rolling it out from everything to trucks and vending machines. This entire process of rebranding could top several hundred million dollars.

That sounds like job stimulus to me, which makes me feel better about the whole thing… even the Obama-like “Refresh Everything” campaign.

This probably isn’t the right time to mention my resolution to drastically reduce soda intake in 2009. This decision is independent of any branding measures and purely based on health and wellness.

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Capri Lanes

Dayton, OH

Driving back from breakfast this morning, Dan spied this sign in the distance. It was worth taking the long way home and pulling into the parking lot for a photo or two.

I suppose it lends some balance to the Governours Square sign I posted earlier this week. Both represent styles of design from their respective periods, and have held up fairly well. I favor the Capri Lanes era (they opened in 1959—right on the edge of the sixties, anti-war and civil rights movements.) The lines are dynamic—very different from my own style—but something I respect and enjoy.

Blah blah blah, you see those clouds up there? Yeah, that’s what it’s like outside right now and I’m spouting off about signs.

I’m going to ride my bike.

Current music: Cyndi Lauper “Echo”

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He-Man and the Masters of the Univers

I collected He-Man figures and look what happened to me

So I had this t-shirt concept (above) that’s been brewing for a long while. (You might have seen He-Man make an appearance in this photo of my desk.)

It’s a humorous take on the font Univers (which makes up the background grid with its family of font weights).

The design seemed too limited in appeal so it never came to be, but I still have a deep love for it.

Turns out this pun has legs in other manifestations. Case in point: Swiss Legacy ‘blog brought Mr September Industry’s Cinematography game to view. Essentially a mashup of fonts and titles of things. Fun stuff.

Maybe I should still keep the dream alive and make the tee.

Current music: Beastie Boys “Just a Test”

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Done cut up

I’m putting the scissors and x-acto down now

Check out the Layer Tennis finale, two simultaneous matches:

MATCH A – AND – MATCH B

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Come again?

An egg on toothpicks stretches

There’s talk of bringing pairs of contenders together for the last two Layer Tennis matches. My heart pounds a little harder at the notion.

Something I never shared from the first match is an interview I did with commentator Rosecrans Baldwin.

He asked a slew of questions to get to know each player.
I put all my answers online, where I talk about my inspiration, beard, personal flaws, and equipment.

Current music: Kelley Deal & Sebastian Bach “T.N.T.”

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Core Memory

Digital Equipment Corporation PDP8/F

Can’t stop looking at images from Mark Richards’ Core Memory: A Visual Survey of Vintage Computers.

I’m trying to be more budget-conscious this year, but I feel compelled to purchase this book—much like I would feel compelled to flip every single one of those switches. Take that touchscreens.

And that color palette rocks. It was a good era. See the 150-in-one electronic kit.

An inspiring way to start the Monday, with a hat tip to Coudal for pointing it out. (Related props: Have you seen the archived coin flips for Layer Tennis?)

Current music: Mapstation “Watching Paik’s Video Buddha”

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Burlington Coat Factory

Not affiliated with Burlington Industries

I’m thankful this is not my new logo.

But in all seriousness, it’s been jam-packed whacky-busy leading up to this holiday break.

Man am I looking forward to being let down by the big parade and then making it up by stuffing myself silly tomorrow.

Be well, all.

Current music: The Soft Pink Truth “I Want To Thank You”

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hot

It was either a quick snapshot of the stove burner or some gas station I passed tonight

Couple o links inspire this post, somewhat disjointed:

Enough with the lists – looking at the list-ification of info, and how it becomes numbing. I agree wholeheartedly and yet bookmark with abandon.

What’s over? iMomus looks at what’s retro. His list is refreshingly pointed, including rock music, cars, and democracy to name a few. He spreads each item out with enough argument to move beyond bullet points.

Developing websites and designs, I’m always running over a list in my mind. It’s loose and changes on whim, but the premise is to discount elements that are played out:

– Skulls
– Owls, unicorns, birds, bears
– Vector swirly clip art
– Hand-drawn lettering
– Type with counters filled
The 80s
– Distressed treatments
– Shiny reflections
– Minimalism
– Whitespace

Personally, I’m not a fan of merchandise in which the design is solely comprised of a logo or brand. I’ve seen entire stores built upon this principle, and to that I say, give me something more.

Note, I’m going to be abusing a few of the items on this list in the near future.

Current music: Chavez “You Faded”

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Behind the scenes

A week later

Folks have asked how things went down last Friday, so I’ve put together a really long, long-winded page about what was going through my head for each volley.

PhotosBehind the Scenes: My Experience with Layer Tennis.

Me? I’ll be happy to be an observer watching today’s special Halloween Edition match between Brian “Candykiller” Taylor and Jason Santa Maria — two folks whose work is as much an art as it is design in my mind.

The gore starts at 2pm CST, and today’s match is rated M for mature.

Current music: Pavement “Fight This Generation”

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This afternoon? It went down.

They call me Bunyan [ + zoom ]

Ever heard of Photoshop Tennis? It’s this thing where designers hit a file back and forth, adding, subtracting, and mixing it up. There’s commentary along the way and at the end, a winner is declared.

It’s called Layer Tennis now, because it’s not limited to Photoshop. I figure that’ll make more sense as the tournaments go on and we see different types of matches being played out.

Like tomorrow, it might be a little more twisted than usual—I’m pitted against Naz (see his post about the match) and we’re going to be using photos instead of graphics to throw down on the virtual court.

Read a preview of the match written by Rosecrans Baldwin (he lies) and watch the mayhem.

We got 15 minutes between volleys and man did Spike throw me some curve balls. I threw back. Oh, and you gotta check out the coin toss.

Current music: Animal Collective “Fireworks”

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