Explaining Graphic Design to a Five Year Old

Design 4 Kids

Kids are naturally curious about what their parents do for a living, and when we try to explain it to them (or even some adults) our explanations generally fall into one of two categories: lengthy and overly informative or hasty and placating. You have to find the middle ground.

This is even more important when you have to explain a job that’s a bit more abstract, like artist or psychologist. You have to go big with color and candy wrappers to keep them listening.
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Hashtags are Dead

#Hashtags Are Dead…Kinda

From Must Have to Has Been?

Consider the mighty hashtag. A splendid tool for grouping and monitoring specific topics via social media, it has come a long way in a relatively short amount of time.

First suggested by former Google designer, Chris Messina in 2007, who proposed that Twitter adopt the hashtag — or “pound” symbol, as it was called at the time — as a method for grouping content.

Have we truly thought about the purpose of this feature in 2016? With all the advanced tracking capabilities and tools these days, is the hashtag as important as it once was? As a company, we have personally witnessed hashtag interaction severely decline in the last few years. Read More

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Jess Boonstra Dumb Questions for Smart Designers

Dumb Questions for Smart Designers – Jess Boonstra

Jess Boonstra is a designer with an adventurous side.

She has done outstanding work for Rhinegeist Brewery, The Writer’s Market, Miami University in Ohio, and The People’s Improv Theater in New York City, just to name a fun few. She has a wild range of experience in editorial publishing, responsive web design and motion graphics. She balances big challenges with the small, down-to-the-pixel details.

Her main focus at the moment has been with a tech startup that she co-founded, called Garageio, an Internet of Things product that essentially makes your garage door smart, and integrates with other technologies like Amazon Echo.

When not working, she reads a ton of books, travels, and loves spending time outdoors. Recently, (right after this interview) she climbed Mount freaking Kilimanjaro. Read More

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Blind Typing for Coders and Programmers

Touch Typing is Your Trusty Tool for Coding

This post is inspired by actual events.

This day and age, typing is an undeniable core discipline, an inherent advantage. It is further heightened for developers, because good typing is critical to achieving your goal. Any programmer can tell you that one letter, one comma, one hyphen in the wrong place has cost them hours (if not days) of time fixing their code. Read More

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The Perfect: Timepiece

The Tudor Heritage Black Bay Watch

A good watch is not just a means of telling time, it is a part of your person, your being, and there is always one you love most. Whether you wear it everyday or not, whether it lives in your nightstand until a special occasion, like a wedding, the perfect watch is a personal symbol of expression.

That said, watches aren’t jewelry. They are the conveyances of transporting time; they are tools. Even with cellphones and tablets everywhere these days, the watch is still eternally appreciated. And the Tudor Heritage Black Bay is an impressively attractive and durable diver’s watch, at a price that falls perfectly between the balance of quality and craftsmanship. Read More

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Jeff Rogers Dumb Questions for Smart Designers

Dumb Questions for Smart Designers – Jeff Rogers

Say Howdy to Mr. Jeff Rogers, a master multidisciplinary designer and illustrator specializing in custom lettering of all shapes and sizes.

He keeps his Brooklyn studio stocked to the brim with paint brushes, pens, markers, and a couple of humongous computers. He creates unique and joyful work for a wide range of smart clients, including Nike, Google, McDonald’s, Conde Nast, Wells Fargo, and Diet Coke, just to name a solid, select few.

Jeff hales from Texas, but lives in Queens, New York with his wife and daughter, and a baby boy on the way. With very busy work and life schedules, we appreciate the time Jeff took to answer our Dumb Questions. Read More

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Movie Reel

Movies to Inspire – Part IV

Summer is the season of blockbusters. In essence, design is about busting blocks. Be it web or graphic or illustrative, design is all about the message to the audience, the people. Using outside influence to inspire creative, constructive usability is the sole purpose of design, the heart, if you will.

The fourth installment in our Movies for Designers series is much more than teaching you anything about Design, these films teach something about people — how they behave, what motivates them and how they shape art and culture at the same time they are shaped by it. Read More

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NYC Wifi

Where Once There Was a Payphone

How Wifi is Changing the Streets of New York City Forever

Goodbye past, hello future. New York City is a new town these days in many ways. One of which is the new, city-wide wifi. Where once were telephone booths on corners, now there are triangular gigabit internet towers, allowing city citizens to dock, charge, connect and even create on their way to the 6 train.

Earlier this year, the Big Apple started unveiling these modern monoliths dedicated to providing the city streets with fast, unlimited wifi internet. The gestalt pillars stand out like angular bus stops, but give the infrastructure of the lay metropolis a push in the right direction: Progress.

Everyone here at AR Design is either from or has lived in New York City at one point. We found it refreshing from a design, tech-savvy standpoint, as well as a forward-thinking approach, that our once-home will look very different the next time we return. Read More

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Chip Kidd Dumb Questions for Smart

Dumb Questions for Smart Designers – Chip Kidd

What does one say about someone as esteemed as Chip Kidd? If, for some reason, you don’t recognize his name, surely you will recognize (and be in awe) of his work.

Chip Kidd is an icon. His work in book packaging and design has revolutionized the game. As a graphic designer for Alfred A. Knopf since 1986, Kidd has designed shelves full of books, including classics you can picture in a snap: Jurassic Park, Naked by David Sedaris, No Country for Old Men, The Secret History by Donna Tartt, 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami, and that is only listing a fraction of his portfolio. Read More

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