Farewell, Arthur C. Clarke. 1917-2008

Just a few weeks ago, my favourite science fiction author, Arthur C. Clarke, passed away. As a tribute to the hours and hours of reading enjoyment and plethora of wonders he’s projected into my mind, I was compelled to commemorate the event.

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Clarke, by most known for his book: 2001: A Space Odyssey, was a visionary and a pragmatic. At the core of his books were always genuinely unique ideas, but wrapped around these ideas were stories that were neither longer nor shorter than the idea warranted. Always deeply personal and with a protagonist filled with the same sense of wonder that you or I had been, had we been there.

While not necessarily hard reads, his books were filled with complex themes. What seeped from his books into my younger self were themes of life and death and universal purpose and meaning. Clarkes’ books gave me an understanding of our universe: that in all it’s complexity and sheer scale, it’s so full of wonder that one can derive meaning and purpose from simply that. I remember this, whenever I’m overwhelmed by harsh facts of life: peace of mind is no farther away than outside. A gander at the stars and I know: this is all bigger than me or you. We’re all but tiny flecks of dust and vermin on the cosmic scale.

For letting me in the know about this powerful strength from the stars I owe Clarke and his books my sincerest respect, because unlike all other institutions that claim the ability to heal souls, spirits, thetans and what-have-you, Clarkes’ way is universally free and available to anyone who needs it.

Clarke was not a religious man, so when he said:

I sometimes think that the universe is a machine designed for the perpetual astonishment of astronomers.

… I dare interpret it to mean simply that: lift your gaze from the ground to the dark of space above the clouds, you’ll see that there’s plenty of purpose in that vast ocean of nothingness. Rest in peace, Arthur, and thanks.

An Evening In Sweden

Once in a while, I invite a few friends up to our family house in Sweden for a weekend. We enjoy the fire in the garden, good usually cholesterol-laden food and alcoholic beverages. Sometimes, even music. Most recently, my dear sister whom is also a proprietor of our fine house, has purchased a phonograph. Convinced that such a device is all it takes to mount a successful expedition to said location, I have not only acquired a fine selection of gramophone records, but I have produced a poster to celebrate the occasion. The poster will also function as an invite-to-be-sent. Eventually.

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Feel free to bask in my awesome taste in music.

The process is relatively simple and painless. Twirl stuff in Illustrator, paint and compose in Photoshop and then pile on layers upon layers of dirt.

The Curse of Sin City

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They did it again. They used Comic Sans in a Sin City poster. This time, for the final movie poster. Gah.

First, go take a look at the final poster.

Yep, that’s a pretty nice poster. Now, look again. Notice the details below the logotype.

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That’s Comic Sans MS, a.k.a. “Lemonade 10¢” right there.

Now this is how the poster should have looked:

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Such a painful mistake! Why oh why must the Curse of Comic Sans still roam the realm of graphic design?

Let’s just hope the font is banished from the actual movie.

The Curse of Comic Sans

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Such pretty posters. Such a bad choice of font.

I am, of course, talking about the recently publicized posters for the upcoming comic-book to film adaptation of Frank Miller’s Sin City (trailer). Take a gander at the taglines of each of these posters. In the case above, it states “Hell of a way to end a partnership”. That text is set in MS Comic Sans, the font, that you must never ever ever use, ever! No matter what. (here’s why).

On posters such as these, it pains me even more to see the use of this … abomination of a font. Because the posters are great! The colours, the graphics, the composition—everything is eye candy. Everything except the tagline font. This single mistake ruins it for me. Nothing warrants the use of Comic Sans—perhaps children selling lemonade, but even there it’s a bad choice.

Where in the process did this go wrong? Who approved it? Who made the decision to choose Comic Sans over, say these alternatives, and has she been fired for it? Let’s just hope they don’t use it in the movie.

Here’s how the posters could have looked:

Before:

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After:

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