Large Wall Calendar

Large Wall Calendar


Description: Design & production of limited edition 48″x36″ wall calendar.
Client: Self-assigned

Year: 2014 – 2017



2017 is the fourth in an ongoing series of large-format, black and white wall calendars. The design is a response to Vignelli’s iconic Stendig Calendar, which I had used for ten years prior to my first design. In the context of our highly mobile, digital culture, my firsthand understanding of the purpose of a wall calendar had changed. I felt the design of this classic, modern interior element deserved new consideration.   

About the Illustrations

This year’s calendar revisits Massimo Vignelli’s choice of Helvetica, and questions whether the typeface is guilty as charged for being lifeless and bland. Here, the dialogue between illustration and type is energized by a sense of play. A visual argument is made for the freedom to break convention in type while remaining functional, aesthetic, and communicative.  The complete year appears below.

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2016


Over the last year I had felt a renewed pull towards the craft of illustration. This came both from the commercial success of illustrated motion graphics work and from a simple desire to reconnect with my roots as a designer. As a result, the 2016 calendar was realized entirely as original vector art. All twelve months can be viewed below.

 

About the Illustrations

The two main formal influences on this year’s design stem from antiquity. The simplicity and power of stamped woodblock textiles has always attracted me. This is realized in its highest form in representations of the clans and prefectures of feudal Japan. Their minimalist design schemes court representation and abstraction in equal parts. In a very significant sense this symbolic language is the foundation of the modern approach to visual branding. While most evident in May’s floral motif, it touches each month through a calculated use of simplicity and hard-edged design.

The second source of inspiration comes from the West – specifically the Limbourg brothers historic illustrations of the labors of the months contained in the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, circa 1416 CE. Fascinated by these since childhood, I couldn’t resist the impulse to connect each month’s design with a temporal and regionalist context. The result is a richly varied folio of illustrations as imaginative as they are relevant.

Finally, a note of thanks is due to my brother, Trevor, who never fails to inspire me with the joy of his lighthearted drawings. Without his influence, my artwork would lack whatever spirit or soul it possesses.   


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I designed and produced paper matchbooks as extensions of the project. They were shipped in custom boxes, nestled in cedar and moss to evoke the great outdoors. 

2015


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Description: Design & production of limited edition 48″x36″ wall calendar.
Client: Self-assigned
Year: 2015


After ten years of purchasing Massimo Vignelli’s Stendig Calendar, I designed the first edition of the 48″x36″ Large Wall Calendar. Impressed by response to the prototype, I produced a subsequent design for 2015. The calendar features 12 original photographs reproduced in black halftone on architectural plotter paper. Large Wall Calendar acknowledges the anachronism of a printed calendar in the light of current technology, reframing it as a meditative aesthetic object. Large-scale halftone photos draw the viewer closer, only to confound the eye with sharp lines but diminishing detail. Pages are designed to be embellished and interacted with by the viewer.

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Detail, April (Seagull)

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Detail, June (Hand)


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