Archive for the 'Inspiration' Category

When driving becomes writing


Two typographers ( Pierre & Damien / ) and a professional race car driver (Stef van Campenhoudt) collaborated to design a typeface with a car. The car movements were tracked using a custom software, designed by interactive artist Zachary Lieberman ( )

Download the font here:
More pictures here:

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Monochromatic magic


Watch as the band Friendly Fires becomes transformed into Skeleton Boys (the track’s title) with the aid of double-sided sticky tape, fans and trillions of bean bag balls. The result is a very entertaining and creative music video.

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Fortune interview with Apple CEO Steve Jobs


Be sure to carve out a a few minutes today to read the Fortune interview with Apple CEO Steve Jobs (link to article). A few quotes I really liked:

Product development & market research
“It’s not about pop culture, and it’s not about fooling people, and it’s not about convincing people that they want something they don’t. We figure out what we want. And I think we’re pretty good at having the right discipline to think through whether a lot of other people are going to want it, too. That’s what we get paid to do.”So you can’t go out and ask people, you know, what the next big [thing.] There’s a great quote by Henry Ford, right? He said, ‘If I’d have asked my customers what they wanted, they would have told me “A faster horse.” ‘ “

Apple retail stores
“It was very simple. The Mac faithful will drive to a destination, right? They’ll drive somewhere special just to do that. But people who own Windows – we want to convert them to Mac. They will not drive somewhere special. They don’t think they want a Mac. They will not take the risk of a 20-minute drive in case they don’t like it.

“But if we put our store in a mall or on a street that they’re walking by, and we reduce that risk from a 20-minute drive to 20 footsteps, then they’re more likely to go in because there’s really no risk. So we decided to put our stores in high-traffic locations. And it works.”

Focus Groups


So much could be written about overvaluing focus groups and their group dynamics when it comes to evaluating new ideas and design. Lucky for me though, these videos do such a good job I don’t have to write much at all. (Love the part about color in the first one.)

FLIR Note: A Tip of the Hat


Our hat is tipped to these friends of FLIR. After seeing photos of existing rickety pedibikes used by Ugandan pedicab drivers, Jason Morris designed an improved bike that’s stronger, easier and cheaper to repair/maintain and can be produced locally in their community. Read the Bellingham Herald story of Jason and Mark’s trip to Uganda and check out the slide show.


I Miss The Rowdy Buckaroo


Rowdy Buckaroo StandingThere was a time in downtown Bellingham when you knew someone had your back. If your lunch, meeting or shopping trip ran long you still had a fighting chance to beat a parking ticket. One man stood for the common drivers of Bellingham – the Rowdy Buckaroo.

The Rowdy Buckaroo would patrol downtown Bellingham in his custom painted van looking for expired parking meters. When an expired meter was found, the Rowdy Buckaroo would pop a Canadian dime into the meter (the meters used to accept Canadian currency) and leave a note that said you had been saved by the Rowdy Buckaroo. He was a downtown Robin Hood protecting the commoners from the “big mean city.” And as you and I both know, people always love to root for an underdog.

The City of Bellingham didn’t take too kindly to the lost income that would have resulted in the payment of the parking tickets had the Rowdy Buckaroo not stepped in, but surprisingly there wasn’t too much of a confrontation. In the end, the Rowdy Buckaroo rode off into the sunset, the parking meters were modified to reject Canadian change and the drivers of downtown Bellingham were left to fend for themselves.

Rowday VanThe Rowdy Buckaroo was the effort of Travis Holland, owner of the Horseshoe Cafe in downtown Bellingham, and was a brilliant piece of out-of-the box marketing that not only benefited Holland’s own business, but the visitors to downtown and the surrounding downtown merchants as well.

There are a few reasons why the Rowdy Buckaroo was such effective marketing. See what inspiration you can take from Holland and apply to marketing your company:

  1. Authenticity
    The Rowdy Buckaroo looked like a rowdy buckaroo – he was a character. And from what I remember, he also sincerely enjoyed saving people from parking tickets.
  2. It didn’t “stink” like marketing.
    Something of value was given to drivers that saved them money and hassle. Drivers weren’t left feeling tricked or even marketed to.
  3. Word-of-mouth
    People told one another their Rowdy Buckaroo stories and news about him and the Horseshoe spread. How could you resist telling someone the story of being saved by the Rowdy Buckaroo?!
  4. Fantastic PR
    Every time a story was written about the Rowdy Buckaroo, Holland’s restaurant would get some press. PR doesn’t have to mean twisting a reporter’s arm to tell your story. Create something interesting/newsworthy to begin with and coverage will often follow.
  5. The Rowdy Buckaroo was fun.
    It was fun watching the Rowdy Buckaroo in action popping dimes into expired meters and leaving notes. The Rowdy Buckaroo was was equal parts entertainment, performance art and marketing.
  6. Fusion
    The Rowdy Buckaroo and his custom vehicle were highly visible. What started initially as a form of marketing in the downtown core actually became infused as a part of the landscape and culture of downtown.
Learn more about FLIR Creative. Visit our website and view our work.

Trim: Before / After


We see before/after photos all the time in advertising, but there’s something about Trim that’s interesting and takes a new angle on the before/after shot.

Trim is a photo project created by two photographers who collaborate on work together under the name Big Rocket. The two photographers set up a camera in a barber shop and took before and after portraits to show the change a haircut can make. The project is one of the Best in Book winners in Creative Review’s Photography Annual published with the October issue of CR. [via Creative Review blog]

Haircut Project