Can someone please confirm


that I really did see Stefan Sagmeister
waiting for/looking for someone with a single-stem flower
at the Union Square Farmer's Market on Friday???


How Graphic Design Can Save The World

Check out this article about how powerpoint is actually doing evil.

My apologies to those of you that believe CNN is an appendage of big brother.


New Blog on Design and Innovation

I have a brand new Blog on design and innovation.
It is at:


I want the content to be good and useful. Send me feedback.



So I recently sent out an email to family and friends about how Meet Your Type is on the fontshop website and they can see something I worked on. Moms like that you know. The two responses I got back were along the lines of "wow you're sure getting busy on page 28"

This is page 28

I guess I can only be flattered that (1) I apparently look good enough to be confused with Drew's gorgeous wife. (2) I have good enough taste in men that my husband can be sometimes confused with someone who looks like Drew.

Drew: If you do happen to read this please just take that as a complement.


Missing Missy.

Good design humor. Especially since it deals with cats.


Logical Reasons for Emotional Appeal

At my work I have had to defend my position about branding a lot. Here is a list of reasons that I have written on why it is important to invest in a brand:

1. People make decisions from emotion. Emotion does not necessarily mean the decision is impulsive or demonstrative. A good brand provides the emotional support that reason cannot. A good brand can and should communicate to both the left and right sides of the brain.

2. It can reflect the image of the corporation that it wants the public to know of.

3. It helps public relations because it shows an awareness for a need for public awareness and approval

4. It shows financial stability and shows the direction of the corporation

5. It helps distinguish our company from competitors

6. It sets a favorable image for prospective emloyees

7. It saves a lot of time and money through consolidation and unification of graphic applications

8. Companies without a strong brand disappear among all of the competitors

9. Brand is a manifestation of excellence that is visible.

10. Over time it can encourage superior performance across the boards

11. It creates interest so that people will want to know more

12. Brands make it easy for the customer to buy

13. Brands make it easy for the salesforce to sell

14. A brand, or companies reputation is one of the most valuable company assets. —Stocks with largest gains in Brand equity saw their stock return average 30% those with losses in brand equity saw stock return average a negative 10%

15. Brands set expectations in the minds of the consumers. If the brand is dull, people will expect it to be dull

16. Provides visual communication that can be sustained through time (verbal communication cannot be)

—Please add your ideas.


good for a giggle

...strangely familiar


Portfolio update

Hi all.

My portfolio has been updated. So what do you all think? Anything weird or I should do differently?


Goodbye Friends...

Bye to all (except John and Manasseh!) When you miss me you can just watch An Affair to Remember and say hi to my building. Hopefully we will all get back together some day...hey whatever happened to that class picture of all of us?



And get this—it was designed by 15 graphic design students.

Glorious—do you know when our 'online' version goes live?


FINAL WORD: Design as Cheesecake


I must first commend Colin on his talk that he gave. That was a difficult thing to do and he pulled it off in a way that was satisfying to everyone including me. Though y'all may disagree, this post on an alternative view of design might reveal that it is not just mindless or trendy blather, but a well thought out philosophy.

1. Designing in the sense of adding balance, contrast, cohesion etc. to a composition is pleasing to humans because it pushes the pleasure buttons in our brains. The pleasure is universal to humans because our brains evolved the same way. Designing is no different from adding chemicals together to make cheesecake. Cheesecake pushes the pleasure buttons in our brains too, but there is no truth in cheesecake. This may seem to degrade design in a way because it takes it out of a "divine realm" but it also glorifies design in another way by revealing the awe and complexity of our brains as it reacts to pleasurable designs that contain geometry and decoration.

2. Designing in the sense of communicating is simply a technology for spreading information. There is no inherent truth in technology, though there may be truth in the message it is communicating. If design is communicating something valuable like the gospel, then design can help change the world. But, most designers are too afraid to communicate the gospel through design outright. Designers spend their time designing, which means that they did not use that time to get trained in economics, politics, philosophy, and the law. This tends to make designers who make political statements look silly to those who were trained in those areas just as an economist would look silly if he tried to design something. My critique is that designers are good at invoking emotion but they leave out the logic in their "social commentary".

3. Good design has no inherent truth in it. Good design is simply design that fulfills it's purpose, whatever that purpose may be. There may be objectively good or bad purposes such as spiritual purposes vs. carnal purposes.

4. Design can be pleasurable as it interacts with our innate human nature (our minds). But, it can also be subjective to the viewer as it may invoke different associations or symbols that relate to the unique memories and experiences of the viewer. Basically, although we are born with the same pleasure buttons in our brains, some tastes can be acquired and are therefore subjective (or relative).

5. Design as art is useless to human progress just as cheesecake is practically useless except you can eat cheesecake. ( But, useless things, paradoxically, can be highly useful for a certain purpose—appraising the assets of the bearer of useless things. Rich people buy art and inaccessible design to show off their status. Universal tastes that are liked by most people such as realistic decorations of plants and animals, are generally disdained by the elite. As Adrian says, "It is just fluff...pedestrian...mere decoration... color is nothing but an embellishment.." But, universally, "the masses" prefer decoration, organic embellishment, and color. (Probably because it is reflective of the environment that our ancestors evolved in—the savannah) Most graphic designers in my experience are elitist. Their connoisseurship of difficult and inaccessible works of culture serves as a badge in society's upper strata. Therefore, design as art has done more to fragment people into classes, than to unify them.

I am sympathetic to these ideas because they are logical and useful. I would change my view upon better arguments to the contrary, but I have not found them. When I asked Adrian directly about truth in design, he tried to explain but didn't make any sense to me. If you remove the emotions (that we have invested so much of our time in design), does it really make logical sense to you?


We're Nocturnal

No surprises here but it made me smile all the same.
11PM Monday night and everybody's just warming up.


Just when I thought I had good ideas...

I just can't compete.

Quote of the day

Gavin: ...and I like that castle of type!

Joey: You have not had one useful comment all day!


Adobe CS5, content aware fill.

If you thought the content aware scale was awesome, check out the content aware fill.


During the reception I walked by just in time to hear a couple as they gushed over Rory's piece. "This is why we need art in the world," she said.



"I don't usually drink carbonation but. . .

. . . I don't usually hang a show."

". . . and skinny little Rory's poster."


Joe Duffy's Poor Little Logo

"Pity the poor logo, called upon to do so much, in oh so little space, in brevity of line, in never enough time. Expectations at impossible levels, minimal, miniature, minute, expressing evertything that is known about a product, a service, a company, an earth-altering idea, a country? We want logos that change the face of time, reverse men's forutnes, and erase national debts for crying out oud—all in the blink of an eye." -- Joe Duffy, Duffy & Partners


Worlds 27 Most Influential Designers



next week in the studio...

i will be sporting these.
believe it.


Just came across this today. It is so exciting. Globalization, capitalism, and the internet are worth it just for this.



And your all invited :)


Michelle Stuhl

"You can have the greatest portfolio in the world, but you're not going to get the job if you are creepy."


The Chutzpah!

My ward calling is to design the Sunday programs. I try to make them look nice and use some nice type. They're not masterpieces, but I think they're at least better than some of the comic sans versions you occasionally see in our chapels. However, this morning I received a lovely email from I guy I've never met. It reads as follows:

Laura Tait,

Hi, my name is Jesse Daily. I am a student here at BYU and I do a lot of typesetting for my job. I came across your program last sunday and I critiqued it. Don't get me wrong... you have done a great job, but I did have some comments on it. Now I understand that you don't know me, and we will probably never meet. So, if you think that all my comments are garbage, it won't offend me because I realize I am not a professional, I am an amateur. But I hope you do find them useful.


Jesse Daily

All I have to say is—who does this?!?

First image is my original program, and the second is the program with Jesse's wonderful comments:



"When I got into the BFA,
I thought,
'I'm gonna get crushed by everybody!' "




I think there may be a few students in our group that are into this kind of design.



I was so on time for my "appointment" yesterday, that I was late to class. So I don't know if you saw this one too, but I thought it was funny. And lame. A funny kind of lame.

quote of the day

Laura: Are you saying you want to be like Edward Cullen?

Michelle: Yeah, I think about that A LOT actually.


"Don't give them up so easily, your fertile years."

-Laura Tait


First day with Mark




If only we had all known about this last semester.