Friday, December 30, 2011

2011: A Year in Review

Top 3 Favorite Albums

3. The Black Keys - El Camino
The Who Stripes? The What Stripes? Standout track: Gold On The Ceiling

2. Wilco - The Whole Love
The boys from Chi-town go back to their roots. Standout track: One Sunday Morning (Song For Jane Smiley's Boyfriend)

1. The Dodos - No Color
What could be better than a stellar new Dodos album? One featuring Ms. Neko Case. Standout track: Don't Try and Hide It

Top 3 Favorite Movies

3. Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol
JJ and BB easily made the best action flick/BMW commercial of the year.
Standout feature: Scene Stealer

2. Super 8
Two parts Goonies, one part E.T. and a pinch of Cloverfield. Standout feature: Coolest kid cast

1. Senna
This fantastic found-footage doc couldn't have been cast any better if you tried. Standout feature: Editing masterpiece

Top 3 Favorite TV Shows

3. Mad Men
Through Clios, crazy pitches and all-night creative sessions, we get a taste of a 60's agency start-up. Standout episode: The Suitcase

2. Parks and Recreation
Tom Hatherford and John Ralphio bring new meaning to the words "entertainment media conglomerate." Standout episode: The Fight

1. Friday Night Lights
The final season of one of TV's best series leaves you with wet eyes rather than clear ones. Standout episode: Always

Top 3 Favorite Cars

3. Hyundai Veloster
The rise of Korean auto body design is well on its way. Here's to hot, little hatches from anywhere. Standout feature: Stealth 3rd Door

2. MINI Coupe
Easily the coolest, least-functional MINI to date. Standout feature: The reverse baseball helmet

1. 1 Series M Coupe
BMW's M Division creates a super sexy semi-sleeper. Standout feature: 335 horsepower 3.0-liter, in-line 6 cylinder engine with TwinPower Turbo technology

Top 3 Favorite Designs

3. Fuzzco
Between their sweet design, inspiring workspace and humble abode, they've been on my radar all year long. Standout feature: Responsive web design

2. Poler Stuff
The world's highest standard of stuff. #campvibes Standout product: The Duffaluffagus

1. Bell & Ross vs. Panerai
A perceptual battle of the aviation timepieces rages within. Standout feature: Helvetica ampersand embossed in leather

Monday, December 26, 2011

A Very Timber! Christmas

Each year I post a selection of my Christmas gifts. This year I've mixed my favorites with some recent acquisitions. Loving my new Poler Cuffed Beanie, Timex Weekender, red boot laces scored at Journey's, Levi's 514 Rigid Denim, Old Navy Flannel and a Green Inspired New York notebook. These lumberjack-ish duds are joined by some seasonal faves, my classic, homemade Chex Mix and Fentiman's Botanically Brewed Ginger Beer.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Pursuit Mini

This just in. Pursuit Systems, Inc. has released their "incredibly quick and agile [camera rig] with compact dimensions." With a description like that, you better believe their rig is affixed to a MINI.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Friday, December 16, 2011


I've always felt that a cleaned-up single speed bike is like a piece of graphic design and motion and apparently Borja Garcia Studio agrees. They've just released photos of a new bike they hope to produce: the Helvetica Bike. The whip will be created for the 55 year anniversary of the founding of Max Miedinger’s classic typeface.

Their reasoning is simple: "Because we love Helvetica. We love swiss spirit. We like precision, purity and clarity. And Helvetica, the swiss typography, represents this complete design-lifestyle."

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Happy Little Trees

Growing up, when there were absolutely no cartoons left on TV, I'd resort to one last option before giving up and finally doing something else. I'd watch a serene, globe-haired hippie named Bob Ross teach folks how to paint happy, little trees. Though this landscape oil painter from The Joy of Painting passed away in 1995, his relaxing painting vibes live on.

I recently snagged a new accessory to the iPad called the Nomad Brush—a paint brush-style stylus. I was stoked on the clean design of both the product and packaging and the construction of the brush totally complements the industrial design of the iPad. Most definitely stocking stuffable.

After finding a couple of painting apps that the Nomad site pointed me toward, I started what was going to be my masterpiece. And sure enough what did I immediately start to paint? Happy. Little. Trees. It was pure, unfiltered instinct on my part. And I'll admit, the process of digitally channeling my inner Bob Ross was completely therapeutic.

I scored the dual-tipped Nomad Compose, and I found myself using the short tip on my iPhone, doing quick little sketches at the airport while waiting for a flight. Very relaxing. There's just something calming about holding a brush in hand and creating with actual brush strokes. It trumps digital finger painting, for sure.

The Kyality Kids love it too. All I needed to do was hold up the brush and the iPad. Thanks to their complimentary design, it instantly registered with them what to do. They just yelled AWESOME and then I didn't see the iPad again for well over an hour. Apparently they made a happy, little kitten.

Some quick tips. I'd recommend paying for a less expensive painting app than opting for a free one. The quality of the app has a lot to do with the overall digital painting experience (though the free ones are fun too). And you'll learn quick not to press too hard with the Nomad's longer brush tip. When spread out, the fibers read as multitouch-points and zoom into your canvas rather than paint on it.

Bottom line, if you're ever feeling a little stressed, perhaps shut down the new Twitter app, grab a brush and light up some zen-like moments by painting some happy little trees.

Monday, December 05, 2011

MINI Coupe In Motion

Satisfy all your MINI-in-motion-madness with this one folks.