Gel pen wins this round

I just opened my back of “Drink Local” edition Field Notes and started writing in the golden Pilsner notebook. It’s gorgeous, and the 120# “Dull” coated cover is amazing to touch, and holds up well in my back pocket.

My only problem? The inside cover. It’s black, and none of my pencils can leave a visible mark.

At Target today, I found a five-pack of gel pens on clearance which included one in white. It has the smeary, skippy ink flow that many cheap gel pens have, but it does the trick:

White Gel Pen in a Field Notes cover

I guess gel pens do have their uses outside of tweens doodling in notebooks. I guess I’ll keep this pen around for just this occasion.

Start with a pencil

I don’t care what they say; I still love Medium. Despite all the spammy, markety, Seth Godin-ish posts filling it up, and the hushed, opaque ways they recommend artricles to the reader, I still stumble across some gems. Like this post, “Start with a pencil“.

I’ve linked a similar article here before, and this is a great, natural follow up to it. If you work in a creative agency setting, and you’re in charge of concepting a product, start with a pencil. Don’t be afraid if it’s a little messy or unrefined.

Start with a pencil Continue reading

Is it just me, or does the new Field Notes “Cold Horizon” color remind you of something…

Cold Horizon iOS 7?

 

Not that I’m complaining! I’m a big fan of both this new Field Notes edition, and of Apple’s iOS 7 design.

“Cold Horizon” is literally a very flat design—with that glossy cover, there’s really no toothy texture to it. And while that gorgeous Futura doesn’t really compare to an equally gorgeous Helvetica Neue, still.

It’s interesting because iOS 7 was a departure from the “skeuomorphic” look of the previous design, to get away from making it look like it’s a physical environment.  In a funny turn of events, the physical environment is redesigned to look like it!

What do you think? Do you see it?

The old Eberhard Faber Pencil Factory in Brooklyn

Have you ever listened to 99% Invisible? It’s a fantastic podcast with features about, primarily, architecture and design (and starting in 2014, thanks to their Kickstarter, they’ll be producing episodes weekly!). The newest episode, “All the Buildings”, features James Gulliver, an artist on a mission to draw the buildings of New York City — all 700,000 plus of them.

One building in particular that they talked about was at 61 Greenpoint Avenue in Brooklyn — an old pencil factory:

Drawing by James Gulliver at AllTheBuildingsInNewYork.com. Click image for original post.

Drawing by James Gulliver at AllTheBuildingsInNewYork.com. Click image for original post.

After a minute or two of Googling, I found a photograph of this building:

Eberhard Faber Pencil Factory in Brooklyn Check out the story-tall terra cotta pencils at the top of this building: Eberhard Faber Pencil Factory

(Photographs are from Scouting New York. Check out the original post for lots of great information and more photographs.)

How cool is this? It’s the old corporate offices of the Eberhard Faber corporation, maker, of course, of Eberhard Faber pencils. Built in in the 1920s, it was vacated when the company shut down its Brooklyn factory and moved to Wilkes-Barre, PA in 1952. What they left behind was an amazing six-story art deco building with FREAKING PENCILS on it.

Print Magazine has an interview with a few graphic designers who has developed a relationship with this building. Read it when you get a chance; it’s a fun interview.

As of a couple years ago, other buildings from the factory campus were being turned into condos. The Pencil Factory Condos had a website that now seems to be defunct, so it’s unclear as to what is happening with them. I found an interesting (though cheesy) video on YouTube with a walkthrough of the building in question, showcasing some great looking loft spaces:

Next time I’m in NYC, I need to get to the Greenpoint neighborhood in Brooklyn to check this place out and get some pictures of my own.

Any Woodclinched readers have any stories about this building? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!