Archive for January, 2009

Beautiful Accidents

It must be 12 years ago now. I was living in Allston “Rock City”, playing guitar in a shoe-gazing instrumental indie rock trio. My G string broke. No, not that G string (not that kind of band). Out of extra strings, I managed to find a D string lying on the rehearsal room floor. I strung it on and kept playing. See, a D string is wound steel, and thicker than a G string, which is a single strand. But winding it tighter and tighter, I was able to tune it back up to a G.

From that day on, I exclusively played with two D strings (one tuned to G) instead of a normal set of guitar strings. It changed the way I played, changed the sound and timbre of my setup. It became a part of the DNA that made up whatever it was we were creating.

It’s been happening throughout history, of course. Beautiful accidents. Unintentional intentions. We can’t plan these mistakes, but wish we could. What seems like disaster, turns into the spark that ignites what we perceive later as “rightly so”.

And it happens all the time when I’m designing. Oops, I dumped a white paint can where color used to be. Wait. That’s nice. It’s become a part of my process. A part I can’t anticipate, or account for, but a part nonetheless.

I’ve been thinking about ways to facilitate these accidents. Make them happen more often. I haven’t come up with anything yet. Too much coffee, not enough coffee, time of day, etc.—are they really accidents, or our subconscious guiding the way?

Until I figure out, I’ll keep adapting, accepting and discovering.

Build Society, February 2nd

Clear your schedules, Boston-area web geeks! An extra-special joint event with fellow North Shore pals, Build Guild and the Markup & Style Society (new site coming soon) are co-hosting a meetup here in Salem on February 2nd. Special guest Eric “Rock Horns” Meyer will be in town—and when Mr. Meyer is in town, you gather up the troops and celebrate with frosty beverages and good times. You just do.

As usual, my M&SS cohort Mr. Marcotte has written up a far better summary of the night’s events. As has Mr. Meyer.

Hope to see you here in the Witch City for what is sure to be a wonderful night of markup, style and guilding. If that makes sense.

New Icons: Boxtrot and Ballroom SuperPack

We’re once again happy to announce a new icon set for sale over at our IconShoppe. It’s called Boxtrot, and it’s a simple little set of perfectly square icons that come in 7 colors, 3 sizes and 2 formats (GIF and PNG). It’s also reasonably priced at just thirty-nine bucks.

Boxtrot icons sample

The new set is based off the previously released Disco and Square Dance sets. Also released today is the Ballroom SuperPack, which includes all three sets at a discount of over 30% (and similar to our Chameleon SuperPack which is another way of getting multiple sets in one discounted purchase).

If you’ve already bought Disco and/or Square Dance and wish to purchase the SuperPack, let us know and we’ll send instructions on getting an additional discount.

Here’s to fresh pixels in 2009!

Upcoming Speaking Events

We’re at Day Two, and there’s already quite a bit on the calendar for 2009. I’m honored and thrilled to be speaking at the following events this year, microformatted for your convenience:

There’ll be more info forthcoming on the workshop in London next Fall, which will hopefully stem off of a new project that’ll be underway a few weeks from now.

I’m also excited to mention that Meagan will be speaking at Future of Web Design London in April. More about that over at Meagan’s blog.

Happy New Year, fine people.