Event/Exhibition: Adman: Warhol before pop

What did Andy Warhol do before the famous Campbell’s Soup Cans? Adman: Warhol before pop seeks to provide an answer to this.

The exhibition, dedicated to the American artist’s early career, focuses on his formative years – from his award-winning work as a commercial illustrator through to his first exhibitions.

Adman features more than 300 objects – from rare drawings and photographs to vintage advertisements, artist books and recreated department store window displays – many on public display for the first time.

A collaboration between The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh and the Art Gallery of NSW, Sydney, this exhibition is grounded with the backdrop of 1950s New York advertising industry.

For more information and ticketing, head to the AGNSW website.

Temporary exhibitions gallery, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Art Gallery Rd, The Domain, Sydney 2000 | February 25 – May 28

Design: 8 Sites to Help You Find Creative Inspiration Online

Working in design industry requires you to be creative at all times, but sometimes artist’s block is unavoidable. Luckily, we live in a digital age where inspiration is just a click away. Here are a few websites that would get you unstuck and help you gain new ideas.

  1. Awwwards

This site rates websites on their design, usability, creativity and content. You can also search for web design inspiration based on colour palette, tags, web categories, and more.

  1. Pinterest

In Pinterest, you can create moodboards to put interesting images in different categories. Just type in the search box for all kinds of artsy content!

  1. Behance

A portfolio platform for creative professionals, you can both discover new design works and showcase your own.

  1. The Noun Project

This website offers an abundance of icons, helping you understand the way designers communicate their messages through simple illustrations.

  1. Instagram

Go to the explore section and find an abundance of pictures related to your interests (and following lists) to help you ignite some new ideas. Here’s Studio 22’s picks for the best Instagram designers and photographers.

  1. Muzli

The site curates links to high quality design contents all over the Internet. You can also add Muzli as an extension to your browser, so that you can continue browsing without fear of missing out the most interesting creative work at the moment.

  1. Designspiration

The site offers the best design inspirations that are safe for work – no nudity, so you can browse it anywhere. You can also save and organize your favourite works and search by tags and colours.

  1. DeviantArt

The site is one of the longest-running social network for artists, with over 160,000 original art works – ranging from painting and sculpture to digital and pixel art – being uploaded every day.

Event/Exhibition: Paws for Art

Walk your dog and learn more about Versailles at the National Gallery of Australia’s Paws for Art.

The event will include curator talks on dogs and their status symbol at the Palace of Versailles as well as photo competition, paw painting and portrait making.

For more information, head to the NGA website.

Sculpture Garden, the National Gallery of Australia, Parkes Place, Parkes, Canberra | January 21, 9-11.30am

Digital: Web Design Trends in 2017

2017 is here – what would this year bring in web design trends? Will virtual reality (finally) be the king, and are we heading towards an even brighter colour palette? In this post, Studio 22 brings together a list of web design trend predictions for 2017.

  1. Mobile-first approach

Mobile phones are still the primary devices used to browse the web, and thus the designs, visual and core content will still adhere to the mobile-first model, according to Zazzle’s Jamie Leeson. Because of this, navigations will also be kept to a minimum, so that phone users can focus on the message instead of trying to find their way off a page.

  1. More focus on content

After years of adding items like social media buttons, signup boxes, banner ads and popups, the trend is now heading towards a focus on the heart of the website: content. What remains to be seen, according to Amber Leigh Turner from the Next Web, is “whether that means we remove all of the other distractions we’ve spent years adding, or just making them take up less real estate”.

  1. More animation and video

Animation and video played an important role in digital interfaces in 2016 – and they will continue to do so this year. Websites can capitalise on growing video-watching habits by incorporating more videos for storytelling and marketing purposes. The same goes with animation – they can instantly capture attention and enhance user experience, says Leeson. John Moore Williams of Webflow says, “As designers get more and more visual tools to help them build engaging and smile-sparking animations, we’re sure to see them become both more prominent and more refined.”

  1. Bright, neon colour palette with gradient

Instagram’s logo change seems part of a movement – from Spotify to Asana, these brands moved from safe, grounded colours to bold, richer palette. Leeson believes they want to evoke a modern, techy image, as technological developments in monitors now enable a better reproduction of vibrant colours.

  1. More incorporation of VR in web design

As virtual reality (VR) gadgets are becoming more and more affordable, it is likely that the technology will seep into marketing and content making even further this year. “You’ll need to be ready to design for it. But moreover, you need to be ready to create virtual reality experiences that don’t require a headset,” says Carrie Cousins of Designmodo. “This includes website designs with 360-degree video and other highly interactive experiences with three-dimensional effects.”

The Art World with Children: Why Legal Checks Are Important

In the art world, working with children or using children as part of a creative or an artistic piece, there are legal obligations to consider for the artist employing them whether they’re actors, performers or models. This could also include educational or practical workshops.

According to the Arts Law Information Sheet, there are several laws that protect children during the creative or artistic process which outline legal issues for artists and art organisations in NSW.

They will be required for a police and working-with-children checks to prevent issues such as child pornography and obscenity. With national police clearance, they can be authorised to publish their works with permission as well as avoiding complicated legal affairs with the children’s family and the media.

Event/Exhibition: Balabala

Sydney Festival presents Balabala, a dance repertoire by Indonesian choreographer Eko Supriyanto.

Performed by five women from North Maluku, Indonesia, the piece draws on the traditional martial art of Pencak Silat. Balabala sees the youth finding power against hierarchies of culture and gender through movement.

Collaborating with choreographer Arco Renz, Supriyanto’s Balabala seeks to give tribute to the Indonesian women of the past and the present.

For tickets and more information, head to Sydney Festival website.


Carriageworks, Bay 17, 245 Wilson Street, Eveleigh | January 7-10, 2017

Event/Exhibition: BingeFest

Confused whether to go out on the weekend or stay at home, watching your favorite TV show for the umpteenth time? Now you don’t have to choose.

Sydney Opera House presents Bingefest, a 24-hour pop culture binge festival. Running from 3pm on Saturday, December 17 until 6am on Monday, December 19, the event’s program will include everything content-related – from cat videos to Buffy marathon, from Street Fighter to Harambe commemoration. Headliners include Shia LaBeouf (and his two collaborators, Nastja Säde Rönkkön and Luke Turner), Julie Snyder (Serial), Dan Harmon (Community, Rick and Morty), Josh Thomas (Please Like Me) and more.

For tickets and more information, head to Sydney Opera House website.


Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point, Sydney | December 17-18, 2016

Event/Exhibition: Enabled by Design-athon

Want to use your design and tech skills for a good cause? You’re in luck.

Enabled by Design-athon is a two-day hackathon-style event, whereby teams will find design- and technology-based solutions for everyday challenges as identified by people with disabilities, therapists, and caregivers.

The teams will be in the running for over $10,000 in cash and prizes.

Registrations are open until January 23, 2017.

For more information, head to Enabled by Design-athon Eventbrite page or contact amanda@remarkable.org.au.

The University of Sydney Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning – Level 3 Wilkinson Building, 148 City Rd, Darlington | February 24-25, 2017

Design: What Does ‘Design’ Really Mean?

by Mitchell Adams and Elizabeth Webster

In the race to stem the flow of complex product imports from low wage but increasingly skilled newly industrialised countries, Australia and other developed countries are nervously talking about the importance of research, development and design. This, they think, is where the high wage jobs will come from – and we in the ‘west’ have a unique handle on this. Thailand and China can assemble complex manufactured items, but ‘we’ have the monopoly on the inventive and creative parts.

Everyone is now hopping on the design bandwagon – design systems; design thinking; business model design; registered designs and design ideation. Even the economists are talking about design (in the context of a market).

But what is design really? In many respects, this is like asking fish where the water is. Every tangible product and intangible organisation has a design and always has had. But presumably, all those schools of design and designing businesses must believe they are adding value over and above what has been.

Design as applied art

Design is traditionally associated with applied art, or more precisely, aesthetically pleasing products. Applied art in this context includes recognisable areas such as fashion design, graphic design or product design.


Design as functionality

Traditionally the engineers also have used the term design. But this is to do with the functionality of the product, not its appearance. Hence, we have industrial design, engineering design and process design.

Increasingly, the term design now embraces appearance that is valued both for its own sake and because it enables desirable new forms of functionality. Apple is a champion of this. They require beauty in appearance but also demand that this appearance accommodates complex functionality. And they understand the power of a brand that can optimise these combined attributes. Consumers may not necessarily think about where the iPhone or MacBook is assembled, but they are being asked to turn their minds to where the product was designed. Hence Apple’s movement away from labelling their products as “Made in China” to “Designed in California”.


Design as process

Design has morphed again and now the term is used to describe a process that brings together seemingly unrelated groups of people to solve complex problems. The value here is employing design thinking to solve problems that ultimately enrich a user’s experience with a product or service. It is about creating an environment where stakeholders, not just the designers, can work collaboratively in the same space to solve the problem. Compared with the traditional ‘production line’ methods, these new design processes iterate between the upstream and downstream creators and end-users to produce an integrated and well thought through good and service.

The Centre for Design Innovation at Swinburne is a creature of this process. It takes a problem and creates outcomes that are end-user centric. Each problem requires a tailored working team with the right set of multidisciplinary skills. The aim is to enrich the end users’ life.

An example of a problem currently being tackled by the Centre is the reduction of head impacts during sports-related contact. The aim of the Centre’s Smart Cap and Gear project is to design an advanced wearable product that monitors in real time forces to the head and torso during sporting activities.

Likewise, at Swinburne’s Design Factory the group attest to the philosophy that design acts as a broker, bringing people together to solve complex problems. Along with their industry partner Visy, the Design Factory’s students and design coaches have recently redesigned the milk create. Helping to reduce the costs associated with storage, cleaning and theft, the solutions generated by the Design Factory are now with Visy’s supply chain stakeholders.

For many people design as process is nothing new. They have been doing this for…ever. This ‘movement’ is not aimed at them. The value in labelling an activity comes from highlighting what is implicit and enables those who do not work this way intuitively to change their behaviour. In this sense, bandwagon slogans and business review fashions do contribute to the economy. It’s just a pity they are using a confusing word.

The Conversation

Beth Webster, Director, Centre for Transformative Innovation, Swinburne University of Technology

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Digital: Six Instagram Designers To Follow

As I’ve mentioned in the previous post, Instagram is not just a place to procrastinate or look at your friends’ breakfast – it is also a place to share one’s works and inspire each other.

With designers, this view seems more befitting than ever. Instagram could be portfolio to some and inspiration moodboard for others. Here are a few Instagram accounts that you should follow for some of the most creative, unique and forward-thinking works on the net.

  1. Lucia Litman

A photo posted by lucy litman (@lucialitman) on

As a photographer and food stylist, Litman’s work shows wit and charm through colourful palette and a spoonful of humour.

  1. Lauren Hom

A photo posted by Lauren Hom (@homsweethom) on

Hom is a designer, illustrator and hand letterer who is currently travelling around the world. She has worked on projects for clients like Starbucks, Youtube, Google and TIME Magazine.

  1. Daniel Aristizabal

A photo posted by Daniel Aristizabal (@darias88) on

Aristizabal is a motion graphics designer and animator. For imaginative 3D illustrations, look no further.

  1. Andrew Kovacs

Kovacs’s penchant for architecture is demonstrated in his account, through photographs of unique structures, floor plan sketches, and more.

  1. The Company You Keep

TCYK is a design-led company based in Melbourne. Specialising in brand identity and strategy, TCYK’s works will get everyone sold.

  1. Dwell Magazine

A photo posted by Dwell (@dwellmagazine) on

Dwell’s Instagram account offers compelling architecture and interior design photographs, from cottages in Baja California, Mexico to farm homes in Dolomite mountains in northeastern Italy.