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27 NOVEMBER 2012

U+MAG: an independent Brazilian digital magazine

"In some religions, one must be baptized in water for a new, sinless person to emerge. Maybe that can unfold, in different ways, for a magazine like U+MAG, which is created from scratch every three months, sinless and clean – as I've said in past issues. And in life, it's sometimes crucial to be born again, everyday. But there is a baptism inside this edition, and it happened through images by Lucas Bori and Fernando Mazza. They are responsible (together with Cassia Tabatini, Daniel Malva, Tiago Chediak and Hugo Toni) for the pictures that act as breathers within this issue, which marks a transition to a new phase for the magazine. It is now divided between online (exclusive stories regularly posted on our website), mobile (iPad, iPhone and Android) and print (print on demand is the future!). This issue of U+MAG is special for another reason: it's our anniversary edition (but without golden, celebratory caps) and also because it celebrates in an unconventional way and running from stereotypes what an emerging nation can show the world. In this issue's opening pages, Bruno Munari's quote is the perfect translation for what we want to convey. Things that make our lives interesting. It's not as if the magazine has a message such as 'Yes, we have Bananas, and they are the world's best'. It's much more than that: we present Brazilian imagery outside of the tourist package that's usually spread around, specially when the country concerned is about to host a World Cup and the Olympics. But we treat it all ironically (e.g. the story shot by Vitor Pickersgill, inspired by the carioca piriguetes, a term for local, shamelessly clad girls) and poetically (such as the Iemanja 2.0, beautifully impersonated by Thais Custodio). If we focused the whole issue on Brazil, however, we would be closing ourselves to the world. And it goes against our principles. That's why the stories shot by our foreign collaborators are indispensable for U+MAG's universe. They are essential for our formula to work out. Our exaggerated, bold and visually ever changing spirit will remain intact. The covers, on the other hand, will suffer a redesign in 2013. A preview of that process is the cover of our special collector's issue–all to value photography and imagery. Besides, fresh air is always appreciated. A special thanks for all who were part of U+MAG's history so far, and hello for all newcomers, who believe in our work and our philosophy."

(U+MAG, 2012)

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TAGS

2004 • a transition to a new phase • acid-free paper • Android OS • anniversary edition • bold • BrazilBrazilian • Brazilian imagery • Bruno Munari • carioca piriguetes • content formcreative people • digital magazine • emerging nation • exaggerated • exclusive online content • FIFA World Cup • HP Indigo digital press • independent publishersiPadiPhonemagazine • MagCloud • make our lives interesting • Olympicsprint on demandredesign • Rio 2016 • rising talents • stereotypes • tourist destination • U+MAG • verified recycled sources • visual communication • visual intact • web magazine • whats happening • whats next • whats past

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
02 JULY 2012

Stadium UK: BBC Olympics title sequence revealed

"RKCR/Y&R, Red Bee Media and Passion Pictures' director Pete Candeland turn the UK into a giant sporting venue for the BBC's Olympics marketing trail and title sequences

Super–stylised athletes are seen competing in Scottish lochs, terraced streets and around London in the film which will be used across all the BBC's TV and digital Olympics content. The film also features Five Steps, the Olympics 'theme tune' written by Elbow.

RKCR/Y&R developed the concept, the animation was by Passion and the sequence was produced by Red Bee Media. It will be used for the BBC's 2012 title sequences and on desktop, mobile tablets and 'connected' TV content. A full two–minute, 40 second version will be premiered on BBC ONe on July 3. 60, 40, 30 and five second versions will be used throughout the Games."

(Creative Review, 2 July 2012, 10:12)

Fig.1 BBC "Stadium UK" created by Agency: RKCR/Y&R; ECD: Damon Collins; Creatives: Jules Chalkley, Nick Simons, Ted Heath, Paul Angus; Production company: Passion Pictures/Red Bee Media; Animation production company: Passion Pictures; Director: Pete Candeland.
Fig.2 Published on 24 Jul 2012 by "london2012", the London 2012 Olympic mascots Wenlock and Mandeville.

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20123D3D animationadvertisingadvertising campaignanimationanimation production • athlete • BBC • BBC Children in Need • BBC Philharmonic Orchestra • BBC TV • connected TV content • Creative Review (magazine) • Damon Collins • Elbow (band) • Five Steps (music) • Jules Chalkley • landmarkslandscapeLondonLondon 2012 Olympics • Mandeville • marketing campaign • marketing trail • Nick Simons • NovaVox gospel choir • official trailerOlympic GamesOlympic Games 2012Olympic StadiumOlympics • Olympics content • Passion Pictures • Paul Angus • Pete Candeland • promotion • Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe Y&R • Red Bee Media • RKCR/Y&R • Scottish lochs • sport • Sport Relief • sporting arena • sporting venue • Stadium UK • Team GB • Ted Heath • terraced streets • theme tunetitle sequenceUKUnited Kingdomvisual design • Wenlock

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
29 JUNE 2011

A going concern. Toilet signage as an international cultural artefact

"Toilet signage itself has a relatively young history, following that of the public loo, which only became common in the late nineteenth century, stimulated by increasing mobility and the separation of work from home. Public conveniences first appeared in British railway stations and department stores, but the practice was then exported through the British empire.

These early signs were text–based but increasingly mobile populations in the twentieth century encouraged the development of pictorial systems that did not require shared language. Visual languages such as the US Department of Transportation symbol system designed in 1974 – the first comprehensive pictogram system – and systems developed for the Olympics aimed for universality but very much reflected their Germanic roots in abstract systems such as those of Otto Neurath. Once embraced by international communications and business, they became part of the International Style."

(Lynne Ciochetto, 13 August 2009)

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1974 • abstract systems • British Empire • British railway stations • cultural artefactdepartment storesGermanic rootsglobalisationgraphic representation • increasing mobility • India • international business • international communicationsInternational StyleInternational Typographic Style • late nineteenth century • Lynne Ciochetto • mobile populations • modernismOlympicsOtto Neurathpictogrampictogram systempictorial systemspostcolonial • public loo • rail • separation of work from home • shared languagesignssymbol systemtoilet signagetwentieth century • US Department of Transportation • visual communicationvisual language

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
28 FEBRUARY 2010

Hand Crafted United Airlines Animated Ads

"[United Airlines commercials have been] created by artists from around the world, including South Africa and India, each of the six spots paints a picture of optimism and exploration using unique artistic forms such as shed bird feathers, colored sand and plastic modeling clay on glass. Custom scores of George Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue were performed by members of the L.A. Philharmonic Symphony and in one of the ads, Grammy award–winning American jazz legend, Herbie Hancock, and the classical world–renowned Chinese concert pianist, Lang Lang, who is performing live during the opening ceremonies, played a piano duet. The voiceover tag line is read by Robert Redford. ...

[1] 'Sea Orchestra' (60 seconds)–'Sea Orchestra' is a lively and visually rich commercial that introduces United's new international first and business class cabins. In it, a United airplane crosses the ocean and is serenaded by an orchestra of animated sea creatures that are playing a unique version of Rhapsody in Blue using tubas, violins, French horns and the Indonesian gamelan. The score was created by Shy the Sun, a South Africa–based directing team, which used hand–drawn textures, computer animation characters and photographs of water, reefs and skies.

[2] 'Heart' (60–seconds)–'Heart,' United's new brand ad, portrays the connection between a husband and wife and United's role in reuniting them. The commercial depicts a woman leaving her husband to fly to Europe for a business presentation. As she says goodbye, she leaves her heart behind as a symbol of her love. The musical score for 'Heart' is a piano duet of Rhapsody in Blue performed by Herbie Hancock and Lang Lang, who recently performed Rhapsody in Blue together at the 2007 Grammy Awards. Using stop–motion animation and paper puppetry, California–based director Jamie Caliri and his team, place dimensional cardboard puppets in miniature sets that were shot frame by frame.

[3] 'Two Worlds' (60 seconds)–'Two Worlds' is a celebration of color and beautiful images that portrays United's effect on international travelers. In it, a weary business traveler leaves a mundane, monotonous black and white world and enters a fantasy of color, representing United's new international first and business class service. When he lands, he is once again in a black and white world, but has brought a bit of the magic of the new United experience with him. The commercial combines two different and distinctive animation styles created by directors SSSR, a Norwegian and Japanese team, who was responsible for the monochromatic world that was mostly computer–generated with a hand–crafted feel, and Gaelle Denis, a French director, who was responsible for the colorful fantasy world that uses using live action, computer generation and matte paintings, including textures such as Japanese rice paper.

[4] Moondust (60 seconds and 30 second)–'Moondust' is a luminous, dreamlike commercial with an artistic interpretation of flying in United's new international first and business class cabins. The spot focuses on United's 180–degree, flat–bed business class seats and is animated to a spare, intimate interpretation of George Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. Ishu Patel, an Indian–born and Canadian–based animator, used his world–renowned back–lit technique in which a thin layer of plastic modeling clay is applied to a glass plate that has a 1000–watt light positioned beneath it and an animation camera above it.

[5] Butterfly (30 seconds)–'Butterfly' is a fluid, animated commercial with an artistic interpretation of flying in United's new international first and business class cabins. The spot focuses on United's 180–degree flat–bed business class seats and comes to life against a violin version of George Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. In this spot, the Polish director Aleksandra Korejwo manipulated colored salt using shed condor bird feathers on a black canvas positioned under a downward–facing camera."

(United Airlines press release, 8 August 2008)

TAGS

2008adadvertadvertisingadvertising campaign • Aleksandra Korejwo • animation • BDM • Beijing Olympic Gamesbrand experiencebrand imagecampaigncreative practicedrawing • Gaelle Denis • George Gershwin • Herbie HancockIndia • Ishu Patel • It's Time to Fly • Jamie Caliri • L.A. Philharmonic Symphony • Lang Lang • motion designOlympic GamesOlympics • Rhapsody in Blue • Robert Redford • Sea Orchestra • South Africa • SSSR • stop frameTVC • UAL: Butterfly • UAL: Heart • UAL: Moondust • UAL: Sea Orchestra • UAL: Two Worlds • United Airlines • visual communicationvisual designvisualisation

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
14 SEPTEMBER 2008

Beijing Olympics (2008) Medal Count Map

"Circles are sized by the number of medals that countries won in summer Olympic Games. Use the slider to view past Olympics, or click on a country to display a list of its medal winners."

(The New York Times)

[Interestingly although the map appears to have been created as a simple representation of the global medal tally the map also quite eloquently reveals aspects of the changing economic fortunes and political leanings of particular countries. Note for example Germany''s Olympic success prior to the Second World War and Eastern European success during the Cold War.]

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CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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