Are you inclined to explore multiple ideas or dive in and contribute with your own instead? Do you have a penchant for vintage charm or bold typeface? However you answered these questions, we’re sure you’ll find something worthwhile in this week’s list of design inspirations – featuring Webonise Designer Dana Smith!


Bic: The Universal Typeface BIC - Universal Typeface

“How would the world’s collective handwriting look like?” To answer this question, BIC launched the Universal Typeface project. Giving you the option to explore or contribute. Users who’ll visit the site can either contribute by writing the alphabet with their mouse or phone or compare how each handwriting looks  depending on  the contributor’s gender, age, etc.

The site has an experimental feel to it. It’s a fun way to get consumers to engage  with your brand without necessarily asking them to pick up your product.

Find it here: Universal Typeface


Hatch Show Print


This poster  lets us take a step back into the 1800s technology of letterpress and appreciate each letter of the alphabet in a whole new way. I bought one of these concert posters while I was a teenager, and when I grew up I had the chance to intern with the company for a short while after my undergrad. It will forever impact my approach to design. There is a beautiful thing that can be created by taking what’s old and reusing it in a contemporary way.

Find it here:


Vintage Illustration


The Little Golden Books is a long-run series of children’s books. The use of simple shapes, beautiful textures and patterns are very reminiscent of retro pop illustrations. Who wouldn’t remember them? Many of these books were written and illustrated in the 1930s or 40s, and they’re still around today. In fact, the Little Red Hen has her own iPhone app. Longevity and timeless design really come to play here.

Find it here: Random House Kids


Simple Solutions


Words cannot “express-o” how much I like the simplicity of this product. Joco combines substance and style with their coffee cups and overall branding. I try to be eco-minded, and I always feel the guilt of using paper to go cups and plastic k-cups. I love having an attractive solution to an ugly problem.

Find it here: Joco Cups


Nest nest

Google acquired Nest in January, so it isn’t exactly “new” news. Nest’s product line includes thermostats and smoke detectors that are programmable and has the capability to learn your schedule and program itself. You also easily control it through your phone. The idea of taking that ugly thing – read: visually lacking thermostats – out of everyone’s walls and replacing it with something that’s not only more elegant but more functional as well is really the epitome of what many designers strive for when approaching their own projects.

Find it here: Nest


Big Ideas MaryKateMcDevitt_BigIdeas_cover

This is the cover of the large notepad of spaces to make lists by illustrator and hand letterer Mary Kate McDevitt. Each page has a funny or encouraging phrase to cheer you on. I’ve been following her work for a while now, and I can really relate to her perfectly imperfect style of hand lettering. I’m a lover of lists, sketching, and doodling, so this notepad always has a place at my desk at home.

Find it here: Mary Kate McDevitt


A Hand Lettering Experience

Bob Dylan Subterranean Homesick Blues - A HAND LETTERING EXPERIENCE from Leandro Senna on Vimeo.

This is a video intended to provide a hand lettering experience to its viewers by flipping through various typography styles of the lyrics of Bob Dylan’s “Subterranean Homesick Blues.” The  sheer volume of work for this one project goes well with the Ira Glass quote I’ve included on this list that is about continuing to create in order to improve. It’s just mesmerizing to watch each page with the different lettering design come together.


Sideshow Sign Co sideshow

SideShow Sign Co. creates beautiful traditional custom signs. Their wonderful creations boosts clever infusions of well-thought of print design and strategically installed light bulbs to illuminate the piece. They were definitely worth the 10-14 weeks waiting time!

Once again, this shows my penchant for revitalizing vintage materials and processes.

Find it here: Side Show Sign Co


Beauty Meets Function


I’m often a sucker for pretty apps. When I find them I just have to download and try it out. Then I use it for five minutes and realize it’s really not useful or all that I wish it was. Mynd is pretty, and it’s pretty powerful. It combines all of your calendars, recorded locations, social connections, Evernote meeting notes, and more. I haven’t used this app to its full potential yet, but I’m planning to.

Find it here: Mynd


Exploration and Process engineyard(1)

Fuzzco recently did some overall branding creation for Engine Yard, a cloud application management platform. The mark eases itself into the illustration and is easily expandable. They also shared their mark explorations, so you can easily follow their steps and see how the project evolved.

Find it here:


Dana Smith – Webonise Designer

“It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions” ­ - Ira Glass

danaI’ve been a graphic designer at Webonise for almost a year. I enjoy collaborating with teams of other designers, developers, and project managers. The projects that I’ve been most excited about are the ones that challenge all of us the most. Technical barriers become moments for design ingenuity and vice versa. It’s the very moment of collaboration that really creates a great product. When I’m not in the office, I’d rather be outside ­ whether it’s running, biking, or grabbing a drink.

Design Theme: The simplicity in the details.

Design Rule: “What you make is what you stand for.” ­ David Hieatt


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