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Comments (1) Posted 12.31.04 | PERMALINK | PRINT

Jessica Helfand

A Blog Poem, Part II


Designers come, designers go
Inventing things to crit.
But New Year's Eve's our chance to share
Pure silliness — and wit.
("Speak Up!"—Armin Vit.)

They said it was The End of Print
A line drawn in the sand.
Turned out that it was just a stint
Like Cyberspace™— a brand.
("Ridiculous!"— Paul Rand.)

Designers are without a doubt
Their own worst enemies.
They yearn, incessantly, for clout
Producing art for fees.
("Machines for living."— Mies.)

We came of age with "First Things First"
Our musings quite astute.
Our piety we gladly nursed—
Too bad the points were moot.
("Think dog biscuits!."— Bierut.)

The age of spam has made us see
Society laid bare.
NOT logging on, then, is the key:
So lame! And so unfair!
("Such bullshit!"— Paula Scher.)

Environments we have to save
Designers must learn how.
Sustainability we crave ...
Recycled garbage? Wow!
("It's massive change!" — Bruce Mau.)

With deadlines, budgets, staffing woes
We're bursting at the seams.
Still, we endure and pray for life
To imitate our dreams.
("Imperative!" — Ray Eames.)

Some call it "Graphics"; Others: "Art."
(Occasionally, "Schlock.")
Still we persist and we impart
Good taste — on coated stock.
("How boring."— Clement Mok.)

Some of us think now and then,
Of days before the laser.
When spec-cing type we'd wax it first
Then cut it with a razor.
("The good old days!" — M. Glaser.)

The loss of the "Interrobang"
Makes "Exclamation!" harder.
We're left to juggle question marks —
And make those smart quotes smarter.
("Use Bitstream!" — Matthew Carter.)

In making work designers seek
A kind of mortal coil.
Yet Shakespeare's useless for advice
When stamping type on foil.
("Try Bembo!" — Stephen Doyle.)

Technology enables us
To speed up what we're doin'.
While media conglomerates
Drive us to rack and ruin.
("Give Up!" — Marshall McLuhan.)

Two Thousand Four has come and gone
With passion, wit and fervor.
But — if you've missed a post or two —
You'll find it on this server.
("Salut!" — Design Observer.)
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Comments (1)   |   JUMP TO MOST RECENT COMMENT >>

Hey! Thanks. Silliness and wit. Yup. More of that for the new year!
Armin
01.03.05 at 08:45


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jessica Helfand, a founding editor of Design Observer, is an award-winning graphic designer and writer and a former contributing editor and columnist for Print, Communications Arts and Eye magazines. A member of the Alliance Graphique Internationale and a recent laureate of the Art Director's Hall of Fame, Helfand received her B.A. and her M.F.A. from Yale University where she has taught since 1994.
More Bio >>

DESIGN OBSERVER JOBS









BOOKS BY Jessica Helfand

Screen: Essays on Graphic Design, New Media, and Visual Culture
Winterhouse Editions, 2001

Scrapbooks: An American History
Yale University Press, 2008

Reinventing the Wheel
Winterhouse Editions, 2002

Paul Rand: American Modernist
winterhouse Editions, 1998

Looking Closer 3
Allworth Press, 1999

More books by contributors >>

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