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Is Your Creative Work Employing Enough Pattern and Symmetry?

That's the question you might well ask yourself, after perusing the clip below. It provides a taste of what's on the DVD accompanying the latest issue of IdN magazine, which includes 96 minutes of work from 27 motion graphics practitioners. Compelling enough but the contents of this issue, devoted to the theme of Character Design, are also of interest, a few spreads of which are included below. The disc and magazine bundle can be purchased on the IdN site for $19.95.

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1598 pencils

Van Gogh as Photograph

We know Vincent Van Gogh pretty well, thanks to his many self-portraits, but actual photographs of him are rare. In fact, there seems to be just one (shown below) and it's not entirely authenticated. So Lithuanian photographer Tadao Cern's project to create a "what-might-have-been" portrait photo of Van Gogh is not without interest. He shows the process in the clip above.

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Design, Service, Optimism: The Defining Theme of 2013?

So you thought the lingering global economic malaise had crushed out the once-promising global initiative that explored the possibilities for positive change within the intersection of design and the quaint concept of "service to the greater good"? Not so! In fact, this laudable trend seems to be gaining momentum, by what I can judge from the folks at Public Interest Design. They recently posted an infographic profiling 100 of those who are at the leading edge of what they dub "a groundbreaking movement." In the optimistic spirit of a fresh new year, let's hope they're right and that this soon shifts from being a movement to simply how things are done.

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Chris Gavin's Futura Gold

By day Chris Gavin creates TV commercials, promos and web films. But in his free time he turns to his own short films, such as TXT Island, described as "A typographical tale of epic misadventure." His current project is The Futura Gold, an animated work created entirely with the Futura typeface. Released as a series of short episodes, story idea suggestions from viewers are welcomed. For the origin of this kind of animation, check out the work of Émile Cohl.

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Return of the 3D Printed Skull

Sculptor Joshua Harker hit a home run with his first Kickstarter project, Crania Anatomica Filigre: Me to You, which he claims is now the site's most-funded sculpture project. The filigreed, 3D printed skull was admittedly not without its charms.

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The Handmade Type of Tien-Min Liao

New York City-based Tien-Min Liao set out on a novel typographic experiment — to explore the relationship between uppercase and lowercase letters via the transformations between them. To that end she painted shapes on one or more of her hands, drew a letter and then modified the gesture to change the case. I've included a few examples below, with more available on Tien-Min Liao's Behance profile.

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The Timeless Act of Drawing

While our digital tools have acquired an astonishing sophistication, it's hard to imagine a future in which the fundamental humanity of the hand-drawn line has lost its ability to move us. The CD accompaning the latest IdN MagazineInteractive Design: Perfecting those Air to Surface Missiles — celebrates the place of traditional techniques within contemporary motion graphics by assembling 23 current examples from 21 artists. The trailer above provides a sense of what's on the almost two-hour CD, which is included with the magazine or can be purchased separately. You'll find a sampling from the magazine below.

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The Everyday Side of Design Expertise

When you think of contemporary product designers, people like Philippe Starck or Jonathan Ive come to mind. We've come to see designers as larger-than-life entities, who from some Olympian perch survey the foibles and anxieties of the masses (at least, those with some disposable income) before setting the Chinese factories in motion to crank out yet another disposable bauble. The Fixperts project features a very different side to the practice of design, having as its objective the creation of "meaningful content that showcases how the design process can solve everyday challenges." Solving everyday challenges. What a concept!

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Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite

Beatles fans will immediately recognize this as one of the tracks from the groups's 1967 Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album. Apparently John Lennon purchased a 19th century poster in an antique shop and from that drew many of the lyrics of the song. So then why not a limited-edition reconstruction of this now-lost poster? You can purchase prints from the kiteprint.com site or simply enjoy the making-of clip, which reveals an almost fanatical devotion to historical process. The poster is shown below.

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Adobe's Cutting Edge

If there were any lingering doubts that Adobe still saw a future in Flash, this week's announcement of a slew of software and services that focus on the development of mobile-ready content and apps based on HTML, CSS and JavaScript have put those to rest once and for all. Part of the repositioning process is Adobe's involvement in initiatives that promote noteworthy work created with this trinity of web standards. One of the latest of these, The Cutting Edge Project of the Week, is currently featuring a nicely done movie promotion site for ParaNorman, which spans desktop, mobile and tablet displays. An interesting side note is that the main character in the movie was animated by using parts created with a 3D printer.

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Creativebits is a blog about Creativity, Graphic Design, Adobe, Apple and other related subjects.

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