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May 16, 2018

Check This Out: The Museum of Online Museums

HQ of the Museum of Online Museums. (Photo credit: chicagomag.com)

 

Author Seth Godin, in his book We Are All Weird, argues that the Internet era has busted open the starting gate and let the tribes out: information has truly become democratized, so now it's much easier for niche interests to connect and collect. One great example of this is the MoOM, or Museum of Online Museums. Coudal Partners, a Chicago design firm who created the famous Field Notes brand of notebooks with design guru Aaron Draplin, have run the site for about 10 years, which is basically just a big list of links, and in it you'll find the full gamut of niche stuff: from major institutions' virtual presence, like Amsterdam's famous art collection at the Rijksmuseum, to the most overlooked stuff like Manhole Covers of the World, it feels like it's all here. 

If you're a designer looking for visual inspiration, a novelist on the hunt for a random detail to spark a story, or a just fan of vintage eggnog labels, look no further than this treasure trove. I first discovered it way back in college and, though I did waste a lot of time combing through it, I was also able use it to do a lot of research on package design.

Read on for some of my favorites in the collection!

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Aug 16, 2016

The Million Dot Inspiration: The Making Of "Hero"

PensTaking up a pen for many of us means a few sentences in a notebook. But for Miguel Endara, it means a few million dots to create an incredibly detailed self-portrait. Take a look.   

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Jan 21, 2016

Quotes Brought To Life: My Favorites From Zen Pencils

Zen Pencils ClipZen Pencils has taken the time to turn my favorite quotes into illustrated pieces that somehow bring the message to life. Here's Teddy Roosevelt, Robert Frost, and Jacob Riis. Inspiration is just about guaranteed.  

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Nov 18, 2015

Blow My Mindsday: November 18, 2015

Each Wednesday, I post some of my favorite can't-miss links, images, and otherwise mindblowing goodies from across the web.

Artist Ray Cicin had had enough of his designer friends talking smack about the humble ball point pen. So he gathered up all their discarded and leftover pens and set about to create this huge, wall-sized piece.    

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Jul 13, 2015

Every Item in Grandfather's Tool Shed

Illustrated tools

Illustrator and artist John Lee Phillips has set out to draw every single item in his late grandfather's tool shed. 

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Sep 24, 2014

Famous Cartoonists Draw Their Iconic Characters... Blindfolded

In 1947, Life magazine asked the some of the most well known cartoonists and comic strip artists to attempt to draw their title characters - faces and lines they'd recreated for years - with a blindfold on. 

The results are pretty fascinating, and surprisingly consistent among the artists.    

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Sep 23, 2014

The Evolution of the Bicycle

I love this bicycle design evolution gif. It's awesome to see the wheels adapt, but my favorite is looping the handlebar/steering mechanism. 

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Jul 30, 2014

Blow My Mindsday: July 30, 2014

Each Wednesday, I post some of my favorite can't-miss links, images, and otherwise mindblowing goodies from across the web.

Colorado-based illustrator Ryan Putham pays homage to some of his favorite film characters by laying out their most iconic accessories 

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Jul 14, 2014

Coffee Cups from Around the World

created at: 07/14/2014

Henry Hargreaves is a professional food photographer, and gets plenty of opportunities to travel to countries across the globe. At each new place, Henry takes the chance to document an interesting cross-cultural phenomenon: to-go coffee cups.    

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Apr 10, 2014

The Story Structures of Radio Programs...Drawn onto Cocktail Napkins

Head's up, fellow radio/podcast fans: Bradley Campbell did a bit of analysis into what it takes to put together a great piece of audio content, and diagrammed each show's structure on that most inspiring of canvases: the back of a napkin.   

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Apr 08, 2014

The Wonders Within Your Head

There's a lot going on in your head right now.  Your head, my head, all human heads.

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Mar 25, 2014

Hand Carve Wooden Art Supplies by Camilla Barnard

London-based sculptor and illustrator Camille Barnard created this hand-carved "Pencil case collection," featuring wooden versions of her commonly used and carried art supplies.   

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Feb 05, 2014

Blow My Mindsday: February 5, 2014

created at: 04/17/2013

Each Wednesday, I post some of my favorite can't-miss links, images, and otherwise mindblowing goodies from across the web.

created at: 02/05/2014

 Portland-based illustrator Richard Perez has created "Coen Cast," a collection of stylized illustrations of his favorite characters from Coen brothers movies. 

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Jan 28, 2014

Free Downloads: Tons of Vintage Illustrations from the British Library

 

I just stumbled across a link to the British Library's Flickr page, which has over a million (seemingly) copyright free images and illustrations available for browsing and download.    

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Dec 06, 2013

How to: An Easy Way to Find Waldo (Almost) Every Time

created at: 12/06/2013

For many years, it was no longer about finding Waldo, but about turning the pages and pointing out where I knew he was, and trying to make it to the end of the book as fast as possible. Cause - between the ages of eight and ten - I had those suckers memorized.

But, that was decades ago, and my visual cues are all gone.

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Dec 03, 2013

A Introduction to Campfires: An Illustrated Guide from 1942

created at: 12/03/2013

The 1942 version of the Boy Scout Handbook featured these amazing illustrated guides to basic firemaking skills, as well as the various styles and applications of campcraft.   

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Nov 22, 2013

Hand Drawn Typographic Thankfullness

This November, designer and artist Frances has challenged herself to a little project to note her gratitude and celebrate all the things for which she's thankful.

The project is a combo of these amazing hand lettered pieces

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Nov 21, 2013

A Rare Interview with "Calvin and Hobbes" Creator Bill Watterson

created at: 11/21/2013I know the first thing that blew my mind, creatively. I mean, I remember especially liking the "Under the Sea" part of The Little Mermaid when I saw it in the theater, and realizing that I could tell the difference between early moptop Beatles singles and the more experimental stuff that came later, but I distinctly remember the first time I was like, "Man, this is real craftsmanship"... or whatever word made since to me at age seven or eight. 

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Nov 05, 2013

New Favorite Instagrammer: Whimsical Illustrations Merge with Everyday Objects

Ecuador-based graphic designer Javier Pérez uses Instagram's simple image-sharing format to wonderful creative effect, looking at the shapes of common household objects and using simple black lines to bring them to life.    

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Sep 19, 2013

Perspective

Q: How big is the moon?   

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