A Book That Takes It’s Time

 

A Book That Takes Its Time is one I’ve been waiting to get my hands on since the start of the year when I first learned of its upcoming existence. Finally today, thanks to the team at Workman Publishing, I’m able to share it with you on its release date!

Flow is a magazine celebrating creativity, imperfection, and life’s little pleasures and this is its first companion book. It also embraces the physical qualities of paper – its weight, texture, the way it takes color – and the formats and ways in which it can be delivered. Articles in the magazine mingle with bound-in or fold-out posters, stickers, pre-printed thank you cards from noted illustrators, and other “goodies.” In short, Flow has created a magazine best enjoyed in print form and A Book That Takes Its Time follows closely in its successful footsteps.

 

 

A Book That Takes Its Time: An Unhurried Adventure in Creative Mindfulness (the full title) was penned by the co-founders and creative directors of Flow, Irene Smit and Astrid Van der Hulst. At it’s heart this tome is about doing, about experience, and about intention. It’s a book both about mindfulness and a book that literally inspires mindfulness while reminding readers to slow down, breathe deeply, and be present.

 

 

I don’t know about you, but I’m forever struggling to be more in tune with the now – maybe this year more than ever before. This book turned out to be a much needed balm, right from Chapter 1, that I can turn to when the days are especially trying or I just need a moment to regroup and regain focus. Make your way through its pages in order or skip around depending on what you need and when you need it.

 

 

Learn to appreciate and savor moments both large and small by punching out pages of decorative memory cards to fill out and save in a mason jar so you can revisit them when you need an emotional lift. Read about the benefits of clearing your mind and letting your hands lead the way, then use the provided images and words to create a personal collage. Snip, arrange, and paste them onto the fold-out blank canvas and see where your subconscious takes you.

 

 

Read about the advantages of slowing down, then put those lessons into practice with the removable Joy of One Thing at a Time Notebook. Tear out a postcard and snail mail it to a friend. Make a list to clear your mind and refocus.

 

 

There are lessons on how to shift your focus away from what you don’t have and focus on what you do have. On stepping back from your phone to take just one photo with a camera – and then let the gaps in an album tell the story. Even tips for breaking old habits that will get your wheels turning.

 

 

Not every page is an activity or lesson, some are simply filled with inspiring words that you may not have known you needed to read. Do you get it? It’s the kind of book that makes you take your time, one that you can’t just hurry through so like so many other things in life. It’s a book that makes you stop to savor, play with, and appreciate all the lovely and interesting detours that hands-on activities provide.

 

 

 

Readers will have the chance to learn hand-lettering, the basics of collaging, even how to meditate while running. There’s something for everyone, which is what I love most about this book that mixes reading, learning, and doing. It’s part creative therapy, part teacher, part self-help, part workshop.

 

 

 

 

 

This post sponsored by Workman Publishing. All words and opinions are my own, as always. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep Design Crush creating fresh content!

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Tugboat Printshop

 

I was following Tugboat Printshop and their traditionally hand-crafted, fine art limited edition woodcut prints long before I realized they were even from Pittsburgh. Each unique piece Valerie Lueth creates is an original, authentic work of art created start-to-finish by hand. Tugboat’s drawings are made on 3/4-inch birch woodblocks, then carved in low relief using knives and chisels before being printed directly from the hand-carved blocks. I really appreciate how detailed each piece is and the incredible amount of work put into every woodcut print.

Shop Tugboat Printshop

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ashley Cecil

 

Our Pittsburgh Maker Profile series has been on extended hiatus for awhile now. This area is so rife with creativity that I feel I’ve been doing it a disservice, simply highlighting one maker a month really isn’t enough. So this September I’ll be highlighting a few dozen instead! You’ll know it’s a Pittsburgh creator by the little seal above that will mark each post.

Shop Ashley Cecil’s work

 

 

I first became aware of the flora-meets-fauna art of Ashley Cecil last spring when she created a line of scarves that sold at the Carnegie Museum of Art. She paints from live observation at renowned institutions, and marrying realism with abstract modern backgrounds is her signature style. Those two things alone garner loads of interest for me, but what makes it all work so well together is Ashley’s innate understanding of color and the way she knows when to keep it reigned it or go all out. She’s also working to save birdlife with an innovative window film that helps birds see the surface rather than fly into it injuring, or even worse killing, themselves.

Shop Ashley Cecil’s work

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Lucy Mail

 

Lucy Holcomb started painting fun objects on cards and envelopes years ago – monstera leaves! Pop Tarts! hot dogs! – and recently turned it all into a legit business. She started off sharing her creations on Instagram and her following grew organically from there. Now you can pick up her work for yourself at Lucy Mail!

 

 

 

 

 

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Eugenia Zoloto

 

Intricate papercuttings will forever blow my mind. Ukrainian artist Eugenia Zoloto creates her work on a larger scale that we usually see this form, which leaves me feeling less twitchy yet still completely wowed. Swing by her Etsy shop if you’d like to bring a piece of it home!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Print Edition: April 2017

Arranged Shapes by Christopher Bettig

 

Botanica #3 Tropical Fern by OAK Gallery

 

Figure C by Kyle Steed

 

Greyscale Kitties by Stay Home Club

 

Hey Ho by Above & Beyond

 

Leaf Lines by Silke Bonde

 

It’s Going to Be O.K. by Ladyfingers Letterpress

 

Woman Collage by Ricardo Garcia

 

We Rise by Kaela Rawson

 

X-Files Desert Screen Print by Genuine Human

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Goran Konjevod

 

A background in math and computer science can actually translate quite well to the world of art. I give you Goran Konjevod‘s folded sculptures (aka origami). After years of folding according to other artist’s instructions, in 2005 he began creating his own.

I try to restrict myself to working with single uncut sheets of paper or other foldable material (such as copper), and for the most part use very simple “pureland” folds. Normally, this last restriction would imply that the resulting forms are flat. However, a real sheet of paper is always three-dimensional — even when unfolded — and its thickness brings about a much more obvious three-dimensionality when multiple layers are present.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

via Colossal

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Print, Write, Mail – 24 Printable #Resistance Postcards

What better day to fight back than President’s Day? (Trick question, every day.)

I haven’t talked politics here because I haven’t had the words. If you follow Design Crush on any social media platforms you likely have a very good idea of my beliefs and thoughts on the current administration, it’s just been easier to put my thoughts and emotions into 140 character bursts than a post. It’s taken me over three months to get to this point and even now I feel fragmented. I was with her, I was emotionally and mentally devastated, I was sick to my stomach. I marched, I called, I wrote letters. And I needed my first ever political post here to be proactive, not just all of the above angst.

Last weekend I had a germ of an idea and acted on it, thirty minutes later I had emailed a few dozen artist and designer friends asking for their help. I wanted to create a post – this post – full of inspiring art in postcard form that you could download for free, print out at home (or wherever), and mail to every political representative you want to get in touch with. I can’t thank these friends of mine enough for making time in their already busy schedules to stand up for their beliefs and contribute to a project that I hope will be spread far and wide.

Each download has two postcard fronts per letter-sized page, you can download the universal postcard back here. It goes without saying that these are for personal use only, each artist and designer retains the copyright to their work.

 

Lisa Congdondownload here

‘Persistent’ is part of a series of artworks that illustrator Lisa Congdon is making in response to the new administration and posting on her Instagram feed. She has been struck by the perseverance, not only of Rep. Elizabeth Warren, but also by other women – both women in power and regular women who are resisting the new administration with fervor. Lisa was inspired by the imagery of a renaissance warrior in armor, which was the inspiration for this piece. The woman holds both a weapon and a dove, representing both the struggle and the fight for peace and inclusion.

 

Amy Turn Sharpdownload here

It’s our government. We get to resist.

 

Chris Piascikdownload here

I’m always drawing, it’s my way of thinking and reacting to the things around me. These days I can’t help but react to the insanity of the Trump administration and the GOP working hand-in-hand with him. So many outrageous things are happening daily, these are my attempts at bringing a bit of clarity to a blur of chaos.

Download additional postcard designs by Chris here.

 

Courtney Khaildownload here

“Peace cannot be kept by force, it can only be achieved by understanding” (Albert Einstein)

I attended a magnet school for most of my childhood. The student body was comprised of all different races, economic backgrounds, and sexualities, but instead of dividing us, our differences were celebrated. We were encouraged to embrace our unique stories and share our experiences with one another in order to become more well rounded, compassionate, and informed individuals. It was our diversity that strengthened us. When I sat down to create this painting, I knew that’s what I wanted to show. That despite how different each bloom is, each one is beautiful, strong, and worthy of being part of the overall bouquet. There is a lot of division is our country right now and I feel that all stems from a lack of understanding (which then breeds fear and hatred). So let’s fix that – let’s talk.

 

Dane Horvathdownload here

All of us, especially politicians, forget the simple concept of treating others like you would want to be treated.

 

Emily McDowelldownload here

I designed this “snowflake” badge – which is also being turned into a pin as I type this! – as a response to all the folks who use it as an insult. First of all, snowflakes are beautiful, and second, when millions of snowflakes get together, you end up with an avalanche, or a blizzard, or a deadly snow tornado, so WATCH OUT, you regressive, hateful shit-gibbons. I love this on a postcard, because I picture it as part of an avalanche of mail overwhelming the White House daily.

 

Everyday Balloonsdownload here

Persist – continue firmly or obstinately in an opinion or a course of action in spite of difficulty, opposition, or failure. An important word to keep in mind as we rally together to resist and stand up for what we believe is right. While it’s not an easy road, we must persist to make our voices heard.

 

Amy Garbarkdownload here

I have been actively writing postcards to our elected officials for the last several weeks as a way to engage and speak up about policies and Executive Orders that I do not agree with and/or that I think are harmful, hateful, or detrimental to humans and our planet.

It’s been a serious challenge to connect with some of our lawmakers and representatives. As constituents, our voices should be important to the elected officials who are representing us, but in many cases, this is not the situation.

From disconnected phone lines, full voicemail boxes, turned away mail, and lack of town hall meetings; it’s been difficult to access some elected officials to even have the opportunity to share one’s voice. In some cases, the only available way to communicate has been via fax. And yes, it is 2017.

These postcard designs reflect a general sentiment of: Please listen up: the people have something to say and we want you to hear it.

 

Genevieve Barbee-Turnerdownload here

 

Jaime Derringerdownload here

I created this piece to represent the frustration and chaos of our political climate, but I am hopeful. #resist

 

Kate Missdownload here

My quote is taken from a speech Obama gave way back when he was campaigning before the 2008 election. It’s still so relevant, especially now that so many of us feel like we’ve lost an adult in charge and dart our eyes around for someone. It’s us, guys! I’m so proud of the resistance movement in our country and how we’re all holding people accountable and standing side by side. When I was in college in the early 2000s in Seattle I went to many anti-war protests, and my friend Steve used to whisper as we took a deep breath and stepped out into the streets of oncoming traffic: “safety in numbers, safety in numbers” and I whisper that to myself a lot lately.

 

Kelly Bealldownload here

Even when there are blockades in the road and insufferable people running the government, it’s our job as patriots to fight back. To stand up for what we believe in and what this country stands for. To persist.

 

Kimberly Hall for So + Sodownload here

We started doing these as merit badges for adults (there’s a small collection up online now) and as we started putting together ideas for more we stumbled upon Kate Greenaway’s book about the meanings of flowers. We just found so many that seemed like messages we want to share, and the nasturtium (for patriotism) was so perfect for the struggles so many of us are going through right now, it felt like a way to connect with others that are feeling the same way. We’re really excited to get to share it even sooner than it can be ready in its embroidered form!

 

Leslie Fandrichdownload here

Beastess does not mess around. She channels her steely lioness heart with a mighty headdress and a wild attitude. She will not be deterred and while she can be intimidating, she is also wise and loyal.

 

Melanie Biehledownload here

Abstract cityscapes are one of my favorite things to paint. I decided to create a city of red, white, and blue because while we’re different in lots of ways, we’re all Americans. I hope it reminds the recipients of this postcard that no matter how they personally feel about the message on the back, that it is being sent to them from a fellow American. WE’RE the people… all of us. And we deserve our voices to be heard.

 

Melissa Morris Ivonedownload here

I’ve been looking to the Statue of Liberty as an icon for this era. She’s a strong, confident woman who welcomes the persecuted into this country. She represents the greatest parts of America. The parts that seem ignored by the current administration. I know if she could, she’d pick up a sign and lead us all in an attempt to remind this country of what she stands for.

 

Natalie Souddownload here

Creating these was definitely cathartic! I’m a fan of super bold color, and it felt especially suiting to pair slap-you-in-the-face hues with the bold statements I wanted the cards to make. Couldn’t resist throwing in a little humor, because these days, we all need some!

Download additional postcard designs by Natalie here.

 

Old Sweet Songdownload here

I’ve had to stop looking at the news and at Facebook constantly because it is so overwhelming. This terrible thing is happening! Oh wait, here’s another terrible thing! And another! There’s just so much to be outraged about it’s hard to know where to start.

 

Rachael Arnold Sagerdownload here

The United States is SO fragmented right now. I believe there’s strength in that passion – it means we care about our nation, our communities, friends, and families… but if we are going to heal from this divisiveness, we must hold our government accountable for their actions regarding the population they insist to represent. We might be fractured, but we aren’t broken; and we aren’t going away.

 

Rebecca Rothfus Harrelldownload here

It’s funny, when you said resistance postcard I immediately went to the WW2 resistance posters that had the sun rays on them. I did that part and assumed I’d make a cloud in the front. I tore blue paper and grey paper to look like a cloud but nothing seemed right. Then I cut an angled piece of grey paper and I thought “AH! it’s an abstract cloud but also like a WALL”. I am trying my best to project positivity but feeling very weighed down by reality.

 

Ryan McManusdownload here

Based on something called “dazzle camouflage” that the navy used to confuse and disrupt targeting systems: “Unlike other forms of camouflage, the intention of dazzle is not to conceal but to make it difficult to estimate a target’s range, speed, and heading.” Seemed an apropos metaphor for the movement. Keep ‘em guessing!! The other intended goal was to stand out dramatically in piles and piles of US Gov’t correspondence. I thought it would help these little missives get noticed. Third constraint was keeping the design B&W so the printing could be cheap/ubiquitous (though I bet it would work best on glossy stock).

 

Strawberrylunadownload here

Good communication is always a positive. However, good communication is a two-way process. In this time of engaged citizenry and heightened awareness of the role our elected officials play in millions of Americans everyday lives, I find myself frustrated with the lack of open channels of communication to my elected officials. And I know I’m not alone. Don’t give up! Keep making those calls.

 

Worker Birddownload here

In the midst of this shock and awe campaign of “governing” I feel that RESIST is my go to word to keep up my own fight against EVERYTHING that is happening. It’s an umbrella term that covers not normalizing this administration and its actions, not accepting the racism and xenophobia that runs rampant, not accepting the avoidance and/or silence of our elected officials, and trying to hinder the forward march of fascism.

As I carved the art I pulled prints at various stages to track my progress and to see what was actually happening on the block. In the end I scanned a few of the proofs and then layered them to create the final digital piece.

 

Rebecca Atwooddownload here

The past few months have left me heartbroken. I’ve struggled to find the words to share because there is so much emotion.  I realize I am privileged to feel heartbroken like this for the first time.  I like to look for the silver lining–that hopefully this time will spark more change and more love.  To me, so much of this comes down to putting ourselves in the place of others and trying to see the world a bit differently. This year, more than ever, I want to spread more love. It’s hard to open yourself up. To consider others needs–even if it’s something as simple as opening the door for someone or smiling at them. To stop a gut reaction to snap when that response has nothing to do with the other person. Let’s all try and send out more love.

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