Start Your Morning Right: The Roots “How I Got Over”

October 13, 2009

I remember hearing The Roots latest single, “How I Got Over” on Stereogum during the summer. I liked it quite a bit but somehow it got lost in the wave of R&B inspired indie that has infected my iPod this year. Yesterday, A friend posted the video for the song on Facebook and it reminded me why I was so into it.

The Roots have already secured their place in music history, so you have to give them props for continually trying to push things forward. The themes of “How I Got Over” aren’t exactly new. The hook itself starts off as something we’ve heard before: “Out on the streets where I grew up, first thing they teach you is not to give a fuck.” The next two lines are completely unexpected though: “That type of thinking can get you nowhere. Someone has to care.” That’s the kind of message I like to take with me into the day. It’s simple and gets right to the point. Enjoy.

I Just Got Here. I’m Not Even From Manhattan, I’m From Queens. . .

October 7, 2009

Car Talk for The Uninformed (Huh? Vespa makes cars?)

August 10, 2009

Vespa 400 with unidentified driver and passenger.

One day I’ll get to writing about graphic design again. In the meantime, enjoy all the other beautiful things this world has to offer.

Take the Vespa 400, for instance. A project I’m working on, which involves Vespas, led me to Smaller Is In!,a blog entry featuring a photo of this diminutive wonder. Needless to say, it was love at first site.

While I’m a more of a cyclist than a driver, growing up in Jersey gave me an appreciation for cars. Like practically all Jersey kids, I once owned a Honda Civic. Luckily, I wasn’t wealthy enough to trick it out. The only “modification” my car had was a broken speedometer whose needle would bounce erratically once the car went over 50 miles per hour. Also, I didn’t get my car until I left for college in NYC, so it ended up sitting around in the driveway until I sold it after my second year of college.

Nevertheless, I do someday hope to purchase a car. Perhaps when the rising sea levels finally flood my neighborhood, along with the rest of New York City, and I’m forced to find lodging in Detroit, Texas. Instead of purchasing myself a refurbished Mini Cooper, as I had originally planned, I’ll opt for something classier, that’ll get me instant street cred with the handful of microcar enthusiasts in the Greater-Detroit-Texas area. The ex-girlfriend who once threatened to break up with me if I ever purchased a Mini Cooper would be pleased to know that I have found an even kitschier, retro-styled car to adorn what would have been our hypothetical four walls and adobe slabs.

The Nissan Figaro is to the Mini Cooper what Sailor Moon is to Josie and The Pussy Cats.

If for some reason I can’t get my hands on a Fiat 400, I’d gladly settle for the Nissan Figaro. I encountered this vehicular equivalent of delicious lentil soup while hunting down photos of the Fiat 400. Sadly, the car wont be street legal in the US til the year 2016 when it gets classic car status. Till then, I’ll compulsively return to this Car Lust blog entry, when my knees hurt from riding around town on my relatively uncool commuter bike.

Hort Updates Site w/ More Work For Nike

July 22, 2009

My favorite of the bunch, b/c the tagline is pretty brilliant. Gold star for wit.

When I think of the design shops who inspire me most, there are five that come to mind instantly. Hort is definitely among the top three. Looking at their work is akin to rolling around in a pile of freshly laundered tube socks. Don’t worry about why this would be a good thing, just try it sometime and you’ll understand where I’m coming from.

Hort updated their site today with some new work for Nike. It seems they’ve got this whole Nike poster thing down. Although some of the taglines are a little forced (don’t know who is responsible for that), the executions are fantastic.


Stop Wasting Time! (but be sure to walk aimlessly)

June 30, 2009

Few newspapers do new media as well The NY Times. From their interactive features, to special blogs by artists and illustrators, The NY Times continues to publish great web content that’s fresh and relevant.

Maira Kalman’s And The Pursuit of Happiness Blog is one of my favorite ongoing features. Kalman (whose illustrated version of Strunk & White’s Elements of Style makes a great gift) uses her unique style of illustration and storytelling to school readers on the various histories surrounding American Democracy.

In the most recent post, Kalman takes us on a tour of the home of Thomas Jefferson, discussing the revered (and sometimes reviled) statesman. The entire post is a wonderful read, but this Jefferson quote about making use of time has been resonating with me for the last few days. Check out the quote below, and definitely check out the rest of the blog over on The NY Times site.

Maira Kalman for The NY Times

Europe By Designers and The Topiary Quandary

June 24, 2009

Came across Europe By Designers, a slick online exhibition of European artists, illustrators, and designers on Design Observer today. The site itself is nicely designed and there’s some great work to be seen.

The exhibition reminded me of something I’ve been thinking about lately: What exactly does it mean to be a designer? The definition of design seems to be expanding daily. Often, I see work that I’d classify as illustration or fine art, but the artist is known and identifies himself as a designer.

I guess, at the end of the day, it really doesn’t matter. If the work is good, you can call it topiary for all I care. Speaking of topiary, where’s my Edward Scissorhands sequel? Isn’t it about time?

Edward Scissorhands showcases his topiary handiwork

Europe By Designers

Jell-O That Would Make Bill Cosby Proud

June 22, 2009

Carmen Gelatina by Indu Pillay

This past weekend, while I was off seeing Passion Pit, I regretfully missed what appears to have been an amazing competition of gelatinous proportions in my very own backyard. I am referring only to The Gowanus Studio Space Jell-O Mold Competition which happened on Saturday in Brooklyn. Since I wasn’t present, and eatmedaily has already done a fine job of reporting about it, follow the link to see more pictures and read about the event. Passion Pit was okay, but I doubt they compare to what went down at the competition.

eatmedaily coverage of the event


June 9, 2009

Quick Review: Jen Stark @ LMAK Projects

June 4, 2009

Jen Stark is a designer’s artist. Meaning, she does the kind of work that inevitably appeals to designers. Clean lines, repetition of form, an unconventional medium, her work practically begs to pop up on FFFFound.

Her current show The Beginning of The End at LMAK Projects in NYC is small. With only a few pieces, it feels a little bit like a tease but what’s there is a good sampling of the artist’s work.

For the first time and with varying degrees of success, she explores new materials like wood and mirrors in a few of the pieces. Overall, I’d say it’s a solid show but it left me wanting more. Here are a few additional shots.

The Beginning of The End is on view until June 21st at LMAK Projects. 139 Eldridge Street, Between Delancey and Broome, New York NY.


People You Should Know About: Viajero

May 27, 2009

Las Madrinas. see more of Viajero’s work here

Brooklyn artist Adrian “Viajero” Roman is among a generation of artists working almost exclusively on wood. Unlike some of his contemporaries, however, Viajero’s drawings and paintings are not merely a study in fashionable techniques and materials. They are the expression of an artist’s deep obsession with people, their histories, and what appears to be an ongoing exploration of Latin American culture. As his name suggests (Viajero means traveler in Spanish), many of his works are portraits of people he has encountered on his travels across The Caribbean, Latin America, and The United States.

Custom Vans for Sneaker Pimps World Tour ’06

He recently released a book of artwork and photography, chronicling his work between 2006 and 2008. Find out more here:

More of his work can be seen here: