Sunday, December 27, 2009

businessmen in the desert

businessmen in the desert
Originally uploaded by susafri

It has a sour twist of Twilight Zone with extra dry Vermouth. High Noon Lunch Martinis for all. Beautiful parody.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Evolution of 50 Corporate Brand logos

Richworks has posted a nice collection corporate logos, their evolution and the story behind each.
I pose this question: When is the tipping point for change?

Sunday, December 20, 2009

A country that loves art, not artists

Ancient cultures are kept alive by the legacy of art it leaves behind. What will ours say? Support the Arts even though you may think artists are slackers. Read the story on United States Artists.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Plein-Aire Landscapes On Exhibit

Sixteen of my selected landscapes will be on exhibit at Ancient Peaks Tasting Room in Santa Margarita. A majority of the landscapes were done over a summer in the Bay Area along what I call the hidden jewels and forgotten landscapes. ON-TRACK evokes something truly west coast, light industrial and from the wrong side of the tracks.
The festivities at Ancient Peaks will include live music, my artwork, wine specials, & holiday hayrides through the town of Santa Margarita. Please bring a donation for the Food Bank of SLO. No RSVP is necessary - just come on out and join the fun! [google map]

Monday, December 7, 2009

Sacred Space 01

Sacred Space 01
Originally uploaded by bilbord99

I went on a run on Saturday and brought my Moleskine® notebook to capture a certain spot I came across lately. It is not too far from my house and I am fascinated by places where people gather, especially the Native Americans. This spot sits under the canopy of a very strange oak. I can imagine gathering acorns from it because of the easy access and unusual contortions. What a wonderful playground for a child, and what better way to pass the time away under the shade as you grind the acorns into masa.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Please design a logo for me. With pie charts.


A friend of mine held an event called Boobs 4 Boobs as a fundraiser for Breast Cancer Survivors called Enhancement of Morro Bay. The attendees are a unique, open minded group of people with creativity beyond what most public venues would allow. Imagine cross dress burlesque, meets speak easy, meets the arts. The artwork created for the event had to have a breast theme and were to be silent auctioned that night. I created a 26" boob from a 5-speed bicycle wheel and painted it accordingly.
I delivered and hung it before the party (I could not attend, bummer). It looked great amongst the photography, paingings and sculpture. At 10pm, I get a text message saying my bike wheel boob is up to $205, at 10:30 closing auction price was $250 - top seller! ALL the money goes to Enhancement of Morro Bay.

Exerpt from the invitation:

"Yes, it's that time of the year! Mark your calendars for November 7th, 2009 and please join us for:


Mayhem and I are proud to host the fourth incarnation of our annual event to raise money and awareness thru a silent auction of community-member donations of art celebrating boobs in a variety of styles. This year we will also be holding a raffle for one of the donated art pieces -- so if you don't feel you can make the event, or can't bid your rent on a picture of someone's boobs [even for charity!], please help support the event by purchasing a $2 raffle ticket and get the chance to take something FABULOUS home!

The one-night event raised a total of $4240.
$1905 through the event, an anonymous donor gave $1200 and this person's company matched that donation with $1135, Stunning!
The losing bidder commissioned two more bike wheel boobs. I added nipple rings (chrome headset spacers) on this pair:


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Schmap: Lake Tahoe Photo Inclusion

I got this in my email today and reminded me of the magic of the internet...

Hi Bill,

I am delighted to let you know that one of your photos with a Creative Commons license has been selected for inclusion in the newly released ninth edition of our Schmap Lake Tahoe Guide:

Cave Rock

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

tex k.t. tag, king of tramps, 1931

tex k.t. tag, king of tramps, 1931
Originally uploaded by phranquebyque

Ok, This is cool...
I have always been fascinated by train travelers since I was a kid and saw Emperor of the North Pole and read books on Hobo signs. I'm hoping to see this site grow with more documentation. I would have never found this had the person not starred one of my tallbikes as his favorite. Cool huh?

Friday, October 23, 2009

Fresh Baked Brand

The imagery for this one came easy, but as with any image development, the process was deliberate and methodical. The principles of logo design are simple, and with that in mind can be hard to achieve. Without that part of the process, you might as well go and get yer clipart, or better yet do it yourself!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Road ride to Avila Beach...

Today I woke up melancholy. Slow to motivate, just want to sleep in. It's been happening more often than not. The morning air was crisp and the breeze picked up earlier than usual. It's Fall on the central coast with frost on the rooftop and clear, sharp colors in the sky. After gathering my gear I headed into San Luis Obispo to Mitchell Park for SLO Bike Kitchen. There I watched people clean, ask questions and help each other and fix their own bikes. I see and feel the communion between like minded regular people. I feel connected. I miss that.
These are not track bike posers, nor are they the carbon fiber wankers. They want to understand their bikes; what makes them work, or not work and FIX them with their own two hands. I think that's all very good and empowering. This small boost to my spirit was enough to get me on with the ride. I suited up and sprinted through town to the south end and down the frontage road to Avila in good spirits.

Friday, October 2, 2009


Coudal Partners website is chock-full of information that overflows with creative resources and endeavors. Isn't that what a creative studio should be? There's How to Survive a Depression, the museum of online museums moom -which features collections like cigarette advertising, and a hilarious snippet of regrettable hobbies, jobs and other dull activities. My current favorite: Layer Tennis where firms battle each other in creative Adobe-like activities, and a Collection of Adult Movie Posters from the 60s and 70s.
Happy Friday everyone!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Fresh Brandmark

Client: GEObispo
Industry: Mapping, Cartography
Specialty: Providing Geographic Information System (GIS) services to people who care about the outdoors. Our mission is to create visually appealing, information-rich maps.
Target Market: SLO County Land Conservancies, specialty outdoor events and non profits.
General Use: Maps, communication material, and website.

Notes: The discovery process generated three concepts. We chose the first, with slight modifications to the topo image taken from the Morro Bay SP trail system mapped by GEObispo.
It was important to have a bold logo that read well in black and white as well as color. GEObispo wanted to align themselves with clients who care about the outdoors. The colors reflect sustainable green practices in the marketing material align GEObispo with like minded businesses.

Friday, September 18, 2009

California Coastal Cleanup Day

Saturday September 19th is California Coastal Cleanup Day. Go to your favorite beach and help with the effort. It's a great way to take ownership, and feel good about doing something positive for your community.
I will be performing community service highway cleanup in the morning with the Tall Bike Posse. Our group participates in the Cal Trans Adopt-a-Highway program on a volunteer basis, and not because I'm trying to work off a ticket!

Read about it at the Tall Bike Posse site.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Creating an image for Kitch...

Kitch comes in many forms and is something dear to my heart. Why? Because I see myself as the living version of that word!
I took on a recent project because I wanted to be a part of the family heritage in some small way. the Rinconada General Store is east of our little town of Santa Margarita and sets in a valley that is truly beautiful in an understated discovery kind of way.
First thing (ok, second thing if you count signing the contract as first) on my list is the discovery process. I researched the location, talked to the client, and responded with something unique to them.
I recently finished this brand illustration that will be used on everything from paper bags, trucker caps and signage to snow globes and camper coffee mugs.

Site photos of the local landmarks like Ronconada mountain. Locals say you can see George Washington's profile, can you?

The heritage of a store owned by the same family for fifty years. Grampa built the Western theme Genal Store and painted it with an effective roadside attraction eye catching barn red with white trim.

Use the visual cues from local surroundings. I love this typeface - it's called Helldorado!

The beauty of a thumbnail sketch is you can leave out unimportant things.

Add a little phrase that grandma used to say and you've got a complete package with a tagline the family will love and is truly unique to the area.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

I have a soft spot for Old Guys

Legendary Skater Jim Muir was injured during a surf session recently. If you don't know your skate history, he was an original Dogtown boy and brother Mike Muir was a band member of Suicidal Tendencies. A fundraiser was held and the website is up. Check it out.

This poster is so punk retro and check out the names on the guest artist auction! Is it just me getting all excited? Sorry, I can't help myself; they were my formative years.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Contemporary Paintings from a Bygone Era.

It's the only way I can describe it. Like a pinhole camera, Cynthia can take a contemporary scene and make it look vintage. Its the colors, paint by number style, the soft strokes and the human scale. View Cynthia's paintings at Big Sky Cafe in SLO. The setting works with the paintings. Her East West Ranch really speaks to me. If I were to sit on that bench, I could absorb all the knowledge from that old cypress and be happy.

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

I watched The Diving Bell and the Butterfly in utter fascination. Lately I have been living in a hole when it comes to new movies. I caught this one at my friend's outdoor movie theater. It was quite unusual to settle into a movie after an outdoor dinner and festive acoustic entertainment. Directed by artist Julian Schnabel, it told the story of Elle editor Jean-Dominique Bauby who suffers a stroke and communicates through blinking of one eye. The cinematography is wonderful, and the storyline perspective which starts out like being confined within a diving bell, and as he writes his book, opens up like the metaphor of its namesake. Here's a link to The Diving Bell and the Butterfly movie trailer. Check it out.

Shepard Fairey art on the cover of the Rollings tone.

Shepard Fairey - the artist who gave us Hope posters and created an iconic figure popular during the campaign has created a cover for the Rolling Stone music magazine. The illustration was based on a photograph by Pablo Martinez Monsivais /AP Images. So far, no sign of copyright infringement. The image portrays the president with a halo and becomes like the Savior Jesus Christ.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

De Koffie-Fiets

De Koffie-Fiets
Originally uploaded by Gonzalo Fernández

I love this set-up. The bike, the design, the functionality, the coffee... Can it happen here? Is it too much to ask for?

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Talley Vineyards Vine Cross Prints For Sale

Talley Vineyards Vine Cross giclee poster prints are now available.
Signed editions of the Talley Vineyards Vine Cross Race illustration done by artist Bill Mulder are now available.
The illustration captures the essence of both cyclocross and the seasonal view of the course.
"My inspiration comes from the graceful lines of Japanese woodblock prints and the vibrant colors of the French Impressionists."
The prints are produced on 100% cotton paper with archival inks and come with a certificate of authentication.
  • Framed = 18.5" x 19.5"
  • Unframed = 11.5" x 12.25"

Talley cyclocross print

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Fundraising and Community Giving

So my buddies and I don't really participate in local clubs or associations, but we do like to make a difference in our community!
We are not the Lions Club, Kiwanis or the Elks. There are no dues, meeting notes or call to orders. We don’t need no stinkin’ badges! We are the Tall Bike Posse.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Avoid the Trends

The best way to date your logo is to follow trends. To create a memorable logo you must spend your research time on the company and not the trends. So many companies fall short on their brandmark because it gets a visual date stamp. Don't go to a printer to get a logo designed. Don't go to an online competition. Ultimately you ll get what you pay for. Don't consider it a second thought. You put a lot of time and effort into your business, hire a professional.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Cadillac Ranch

Art is not meant to be static on a wall. Art is meant to provoke, inspire, react and tap your soul. The Cadillac Ranch continues to be a roadside attraction, environmental art, activist art, and inspires others to paint and repaint, photograph and riff. Do you know the story and the people behind the Cadillac Ranch? Well you should.

Texas Twisted
Roadside America
Ant Farm Retrospect
Ant Farm Introduction

"Stanley suggested we buy it and the smash up the front end with sledgehammers in front of the proud previous owner. So we did in fact smash it, with the cameras rolling as the bewildered owner winced in agony."
-Ant Farm cohort Chip Lord

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Posters from the WPA

Posters from the WPA website features this beautiful calendar from 1938
It was created by the New York City Poster Division to show government officials the skilled artistic work the Federal Art Project was doing for the WPA. Shown above is July.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Beautiful Photographs of Weapons of Mass Destruciton

Photography Served is featuring a beautiful collection of photographs. They happen to be Weapons of Mass Destruction. Above is USS Lewis and Clark Ballistic Missile Submarine.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Hidden typography

Pushing the limits top what is legible. It reminds me of graffiti and of the poster art of the sixties. Look closely you might see the word typography.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Five Common Client Phrases Decoded

As a Designer and visual interpreter, I have heard these terms before. It's always a breath of fresh air to read that I'm not the only one who hears this. has a good article on interpreting client language into something you can use to communicate professionally.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

What’s Your New Plan B?

The clever use of brand logos to reflect our current situation. The New York Times article suggests to even think about plan C?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Stop motion with wolf and pig.

This clever story called wolf and pig puts a new twist on combining flip-book techniques with stop motion animation.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Banksy 2009 Summer Show Bristol

One of my favorite current artists has a hometown show. Banksky has taken the theme of formal art and tweaked it by the ear. The result is public commentary on institutional art, its pedigree, and in his own fashion, made it contemporary.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

20 years after the Tiananmen Square protests

The power of photojournalism cannot be denied in this picture. It set the tone and gave a symbolic brand to the protests in the Square that day in 1989.
Today is the twentieth anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests. This photo will remain a symbol of the protests. The image gets its power from juxtaposition of one human against four military tanks. Each of those tanks symbolize the power and strength of the military. 4 metal tanks agianst 1 sack of protoplasm - Wow. If you look closely, there is a hatch open and a solider peeking out of the first tank. This is probably what saved this protester on this day from becoming a stain on the pavement.
Read your history and remember this day.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Let the Rebranding... Begin.

As predicted, there is much rebranding to do here. On their announcement of filing for chapter eleven Here is General Motors TV ad with their calm and sober steps to rebuild. And directly from their website: Creating A Stronger New GM.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Typography Enhances the Message...

I remember a project in design class was to trace a typeface. What was the point? To get familiar with the anatomy of type, the conscious aesthetics, mechanics and fittings that make type work as a family, and create a visual voice on the pages of a book, paper, the screen monitor or other literal surface. It's comforting to know there are still designers out there who can match the typeface to the message.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Targeted Ads, Focused Message works.

Like it or not, Proposition 8 has been upheld by the supreme court. Strictly as a campaign, proponents of the proposition had sufficient fuel to promote their message and work the missteps by the opposition to their advantage. It was a targeted and strategic campaign that worked.
Relive the ad campaigns and read about the opposition shortcomings over at the Huffington Post.
BTW: Proposition 8 was the most expensive proposition on any ballot in the nation this year, with more than $74 million spent by both sides.

Post Memorial Day

These clearly bizarre posters are lovingly created by
David Manuel:

I found myself cruising the web for inspiring and creative things. I never know what will hit or tickle my fancy until I see it. Ever see a Victorian Flea Circus?

BTW: if you didn't know already I'm a Twit.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Accidentals 1

The Accidentals 1
Originally uploaded by bchristo99

I am currently holding a Bike Art show in downtown San Luis Obispo. This is one of many pieces hanging. We have over 30 artists presenting their interpretation of bicycles in their preferred medium. I wish I could own all the art.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Good article on about Spec Work and Crowdsourcing. Though I have thought about doing this, I agree with the writer that it doesn't pay off. I have been a graphic designer long enough to know that my knowledge is worth the time and effort developing real and meaningful design. Both the client and their customers benefit in the end. Professionalisim and business sense are as much a part of the equation as the final design.

Friday, May 8, 2009

I am a micro brewer. I love rich hoppy recipes. I love the labels, I love the craft. Here is a Flickr site that celebrates the beautiful beer cans of the past.
>via the Lost Blog

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Looking Back - MacPublisher

Bob Doyle is a computer guy that has been around for a long time. He developed the first wysiwyg publishing programs for the Macintosh. I remember how cool it was not to have to compose using Letraset.

MacPublisher was the first Desktop Publishing program. It was introduced in 1984, the year that Apple introduced the Macintosh computer. DTP competitors Ready,Set,Go! and Aldus PageMaker were introduced in 1985 when Apple delivered the 512K Macintosh.

Check out what he's up to now at

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Bike Momentum Art Show

The Tall Bike Posse (I'm the Sheriff) is having its third annual Bike Art Show in San Luis Obispo through the month of May. The show is called:
Bike Momentum - A Chain Reaction of Art and Advocacy is a fundraiser for the SLO County Bicycle Coalition.
The Art after Dark reception is Friday May 1st from 6pm to 9pm. Come and make it if you can.

Bike Momentum
A Chain Reaction of Art and Advocacy
May 01-May 31
1060 Osos St.
Hours: Thursdays, Fridays 6-9pm
Saturdays, Sundays 11-7pm
Weekdays during lunch

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Year of the Tarnished Brands

PR Week has an article about the year of the rebrand. It seems like there are a few tarnished businesses out there besides Blackwater now “Xe”. (Pronounced “Z”).
Name Wire covers the matter and gets into the delicate balance and strategy it takes to rebrand a tarnished business. I have a feeling there are more to come.

Friday, April 10, 2009

California Missions

Part of fourth grade curriculum is to study the Missions of California. They are some of the oldest built architecture we have on the West Coast.
Santa Margarita Elementary and Creston Elementary were fortunate enough to take a field trip to Mission San Antonio at the southern end of Monterey County. It's located on Fort Hunter Liggett military base in a pristine valley once owned by the Hearst family and once the heartland of the Salinan nation.
The self-guided tour was more like a scavenger hunt and gave us a checklist of facts and items to find on the premises; which worked quite well. My Flickr page documents the adventure and beauty of this area. Enjoy.