Tuesday, November 30, 2010

A New Face for an Old Broad { Photo Recap }

Beginning with the bike parade, day 2 of the New Face for an Old Broad event was not without constant activity. Pop-up shops, skate parks, live music, street vendors and artists were in place to lure Memphians to the emerging arts district. One thing the event proved was that, in the idea of place-making and designing good architecture, it is not successful if people are not there to activate the space. Creating a place people want to inhabit and also engages them is the essence of good design. //Popsicle photo caption: Atticus' photo of his popsicle helped him deal with the loss. The popsicle has melted and has gone but he gets to keep this photo forever. //See another article by Mary Cashiola recapping the event here.

Broad Ave Arts District
Broad Ave and Hollywood, Memphis, TN

Photos by Sophorn except as noted.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving Getaway

We had a great Thanksgiving getaway with Christopher's family. Grammy and Nak Nak’s house was quite the getaway. We didn’t venture out into the Dothan, Alabama sprawl for any entertainment. All the fun and fascination for Atticus and his cousins were the simple things - an open green space, a pool of fish, a tangerine tree, plenty of toys evoking imagination, and family to spend time with. As the weekend also included the Alabama/Auburn game. Nak Nak’s dueling doormats also provided some entertainment. Yes, I asked Atticus to stomp on the “red mat” for the picture, but the other times he stepped on the Auburn mat to make Nak Nak {a Bama fan} happy because he knew Nak Nak gave out really special jelly beans. I must point out that Atticus’ affinity to orange colored objects in this photo series is somewhat significant to his true allegiance.

Thanks Grammy and Nak Nak for a great time and hospitality as always. Thanks also to PawPaw, Mimi, William, Shannon, Wills, and Lib for having us the other 2 nights. xoxo

Color film photos by Sophorn.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Claire & Brad { Photography/New Edits }

Slowly but surely catching up with editing photos. Here are some slide film shots {except for top middle} that just fit the backyard reception mood better with polaroid borders. I am working on getting film for my polaroid and medium format polaroid backs though. Photographer Melissa Sweazy recently told me about a new source for polaroid film called the Impossible Project. So exciting.

Photos by Sophorn.

Idea Notebook { Graphics for photographer amydale }

Forgive me Amy. I have not started production on revamping your logo yet but I am very excited to test out some new ideas. The inspiration image by Manual Creative above creates a glowing/energetic logo from various transparent/multiple overlays. It makes me think of the amydale logo redesign in several ways. The cyan color that will stay as the logo color can be thought of in various transparencies/shades. Since photography is light and amy is also so vibrant/energetic, the glowing character should be explored as a way to create the custom font.

///Amy is a fun Memphis wedding photographer that has seriously killer ring close-ups and other creative shots. Below are a few recent favorites ~ on the groom's guitar and on a vintage cover image at the library.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Weekend Sneak Peeks { Itta Bena & Broad Avenue }

One thing that themed our weekend was happiness abroad. I didn't realize how much balloons contribute to happiness. // Christopher, Atticus and I took advantage of the cool Memphis happenings and participated in the New Face for an Old Broad events and Downtown Dining Week. Here are just a couple of shots from the weekend for this busy Monday. Stay tuned for more photos and full review of BB King's Itta Bena.

1 Warm Brownie Dessert / 2 TV Lounge / 3-4 View out to Beale Street / 5 Balloons marking the Happiness Store / 6 Brave Pop-up Shop / 7 Atticus reaching for his balloon before Poppy pulls him away. / Photos by Sophorn.

Equal Gravity Branding / Progress Snapshot No. 2

The most complete Equal Gravity logo mark inspired by the Theodore Roosevelt family coat of arms (see next to last image), the Memphis seal and some of the ornamentation from the one dollar bill is the shield and banner on the very top. Cotton, the oak leaf, and the machinery gear are symbols from the Memphis seal. The oak leaves replaces the set of 3 feathers from the Roosevelt coat of arms, although the roses are composed exactly alike which will be modified a bit. After approval of the shield outline and layout then the shadows hatched similar to the one dollar bill will be added. This will help the oak leaves at the top read much more dimensionally. The full company name starts to take on the character of the shield and banner. There is still another option of ribbon like ornamentation over the top and bottom of Equal Gravity that still needs experimenting.

Below are previous studies on the simplified shield shape - three versions then the Roosevelt coat of arms tested above the Equal Gravity logo. This image helped solidify that a more developed detailed shield design fit the company image better. The very bottom image shows the shield on a letterhead layout just for scale/context.

Founder and Memphian Tyler White named his sustainable product company Equal Gravity based on the Theodore Roosevelt speech in Memphis on sustainability.

Graphics by Sophorn.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Happiness Shop { Treasure Map Sneak Peek }


Here's a sneak peek into the treasure map design being sold tomorrow at the Happiness Shop as part of the New Face for an Old Broad event. The top image shows the back of each map and the ribbon that will hold the rolled up maps together (each set has 5 maps with one secret treasure spot on each one). Below is the close-up of the back graphic that hints to the opposite side's design.

I forgot to mention before that the proceeds from this don't miss pop-up shop goes to Smile Train, a charity that helps restore smiles to children born with cleft palates, so please stop by to get a set. Each set is part of a limited edition of only 10.

Other Menu of Services
~Strolling musicians to provide you with theme music while you shop
~Kerry Crawford of I Love Memphis on the turntables playing happy music
~A puppet kissing booth
~Cake pops
~Learn the fight dance scene from Beat it
~A calligrapher to write love notes
~Prints from local artists of what makes them happy
~Scalp massages!


Broad Ave
Saturday / November 20 / 10am to 8pm
ph +1.901.605.4979

Graphic design by Sophorn.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A New Face for an Old Broad { Open Happiness }

For two days starting tomorrow, Memphis’s Broad Avenue Arts District will go beyond presenting paper ideas of progress for the area by transforming it to give Memphians the experience of what the future of Broad Ave could be. In addition to the great restaurants, art galleries and creative businesses that already exist, they are bringing in other businesses like Muddy’s Bake Shop, CafĂ© Eclectic, and Republic Coffee to temporarily set up shop in the empty storefronts to stage the positive progess. There will also be live music throughout and a bike parade for kids Saturday at 11. I know Atticus will proudly ride on his new bike.

Other pop-up shops to not miss is Strange Fruit Vintage there both days and Happiness on Saturday only. Happiness is a great shop concept by photographer Melissa Sweazy where yes you can buy happiness. Some charming examples include photographic prints by local photographers of things that make them happy, scalp massages, strolling musicians, a puppet kissing booth, DJ Kerry of I Love Memphis playing happy music, and treasure maps to secret spots in Memphis.

I volunteered to make the treasure maps which I want to be one secret spot of happiness per map with about 5 different spots per set. To be just as intriguing to locals as to tourists, the spots will not present the real names of places but will describe them with a magical but true description as to not allow the map holder’s previous perception of the place taint their journey. I hope to see you all there.

{Today's song "Open Happiness" perfect for the event message goes out to those who are putting this together especially Melissa Sweazy & her shop Happiness and everyone attending.}

A New Face for an Old Broad
Friday / November 19 / 3 to 10pm / Art Walk and Happy Hour, 4 to 6 pm
Saturday / November 20 / 8am to 10pm / Biker Babes Parade, 11am {10am decorating bikes}

You can read another great article here

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

First Love / New Love { Photography }

First Love / One of the very first photographers I became inspired by some 15 years ago when I started seeing the world through a lens was French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson. After watching the documentary Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Impassioned Eye over the weekend in my recent rave over street photography, I realized he really was one of the best street photographers to be marveled even today. The two images above are truly my favorite photos of his demonstrating his talent for capturing moments almost impossible to recreate. // Image 1 /2


New Love / Carrying the torch from Henri, in some form, is current street photographer Yanidel capturing Paris so intimately it makes you feel like you've always lived there - as a Parisian. You can also read a great instructive interview with him here. *New Info ~ I asked Yanidel about his strategy for taking candid photos of strangers and his response was "As for strangers, the important thing is too shoot very quickly. They notice me most of the time but very often, the shot is already taken. Act normal, like if you were not going to take their photo than raise it to your eyes and trigger. Most of the time, they won't have time to adjust their behaviour to the camera." / Seeing Yanidel's daily photo blog posts make me wish there was a street photography of Memphis blog. I don't know if I could do it as frequently and consistently as he does. My best attempts shown below are from my trip to Cambodia several years ago. // Images above via Yanidel blog. Images below by Sophorn {more on flickr/design addict}.

I tried walking downtown a few weeks ago trying to capture shots of people as well as Henri or Yanidel but I found myself a bit uncomfortable pointing the lens at strangers as I walked and felt both too impatient and slow simultaneously. I'm sure it takes some practice and will try again, but Memphis, anyone up for the challenge?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Graphic Design for The Unpretentious Restaurant

When I saw this branding package for the restaurant Frank over the weekend, I was completely inspired to do the same for Alex's Tavern, one of the most unpretentious restaurants in Memphis. Rocky, owner of Alex's, raved over my photos from my last visit then also asked if I could design their menu. I had put it off for a while but finally went back last night to try the fall-off-the-bone bbq ribs and touch base with Rocky about the menu design. He let me know that Alex's logo is actually a turn of the century baseball player with a prominent handle bar mustache. It was a great vintage image I know will inspire the menu design along with the examples from these Frank graphics by Helms Workshop.

Don't forget to check out Alex's Tavern for a burger I still think is the best in Memphis and the bbq ribs with delicious coleslaw and beans.

Images via graphic exchange.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Peanut Shoppe

The Peanut Shoppe downtown has become a regular visit by our office recently. James goes for the fresh roasted peanuts but I go for the candied peanuts and hazelnuts. Don't let the sign limit you. They also have popcorn and candy of all sorts. Owners Ameerah and Ridda showed us that the antique roaster was more than just for show. // They also make assorted gift boxes for special occasions so remember them for the upcoming holidays.

The Peanut Shoppe
24 South Main Street Near Monroe
Memphis, TN
ph +1.901.525.1115

Photos by Sophorn.

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