The American storyteller Ira Glass has said that good storytelling includes, among other things, having the courage to cut the crap. As Ira said in his YouTube video two years ago, "Not enough gets said about the importance of abandoning crap." (See this post on Ira Glass and the art of Storytelling which includes his video. Sample slide below.)
Above: Japan has some of the best design of all kinds in the world, and Japan also has a lot of crap (the ubiquitous pachinko parlor comes to mind). Yesterday I snapped this photo of a worker cleaning up after a street fair. The crap on his T-shirt looks pretty good in Helvetica (you gotta love Helvetica — it makes even crap look good).
C-R-A-P: Four simple graphic design concepts
In the Non-Designer's Design Book, author Robin Williams introduces four fundamental graphic design principles which every professional should understand. The four are Contrast, Repetition, Alignment, and Proximity (or CRAP). My buddy Dan Pink reviews these four fundamental principles in the design section of his New York Times best-seller A Whole New Mind, and in Chapter 6 of Presentation Zen (the biggest chapter by far) I also give a quick review of these principles. Rather than outline them here, I have instead included the last 12 pages of Chapter 6 from my book which contains the four concepts and example slides. Click on the image below to download the pages in PDF in spread form (about 500k).
Or if you prefer, download the pages in range form (perhaps better for printing; one page per sheet).
And now for a non-sequitur
In completely unrelated news, my buddy Shawn turned me on to Posterous this week which is a great way to upload photos (videos, etc.) from your phone. I have a Posterous blog which I am using only for uploading photos on the fly from my iPhone. The cool thing about Posterous is that it remembers my iPhone address (so it's very simple and quick) and it automatically puts the photo (or whatever) in my Posterous blog along with any text I write in my email and (this is the cool part) it sends the post with a short url back to my Posterous blog to my Twitter page. So anytime I put a photo up, the link and description appears as a tweet on my Twitter page. Posterous can do more than that, but I'm just keeping it simple. Here's my Posterous page and my Twitter page. You can see that my tweets this weekend have all been from my iPhone when I am out and about. Feel free to subscribe -- who knows, maybe I'll even tweet (upload) something interesting one day.
In other unrelated news, if your have Adobe Photoshop, you might enjoy these free brushes for making masking-tape segments from Spoon Graphics.