Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Pop Inspiration: White Zombie

With these zombie eyes, he rendered her powerless. With this zombie grip, he made her perform his every desire!

Released in 1932, the film White Zombie is considered the first feature-length zombie film. It starred Bela Lugosi, fresh off his unforgettable role in Dracula. He played a sinister witch doctor, 'Murder' Legendre, the vile owner of a zombie-staffed sugar mill in Haiti. Though it doesn't command the adoration of Dracula or Frankenstein, there's something enchanting (pun perhaps intended) about this film.

The posters and promotional items for the film give us a wealth of fun design. Take the colors for instance. In the pieces featured here, we see a period-perfect palm green, fading to a jade. On the opposite of the spectrum, we have a rusted red, a rich earthy tone. Perhaps subconsciously, these colors can transport us to the film's setting in the tropical world of Haiti in the 1930's.

Typefaces are predominately san serif, chunky and 'modern' in most cases. The titles are in a similar design, but tremulously edged, to give the words more intrigue and almost tribal mystery. The imagery shifts from graphically altered monotone photographs to posterized features and faces, sure to unsettle the nerves. These posters hearken to a time of minimal color usage and bold graphics.

White Zombie is a wealth of nostalgia, a transportation to the world of roaring Hollywood studios and 'monsters' more famous than the actors who played them. The story, the setting, the crackling audio, it's quite fantastic. With a short running time, it's great for wiling away a little over an hour. Have a Happy Halloween and watch out for zombies!

Legendre Sugar
Original lineart label
© Rachael Sinclair

Monday, October 29, 2012

Happy Birthday Bob

Kawaii Bob Ross
original vector art
©Rachael Sinclair
Happy birthday Bob Ross, who would have been 70 years old today. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Color Flavor: Jay Feather and Sorghum

Autumn blows in on the backs of leaves to the calls of the garrulous blue jay. The electric blue feathers stand out against the contrasting golden leaves. Kitchens are thick with the smells of apple pies and pumpkin bread. On foggy mornings, warm biscuits aren't the same without a creamy spread of butter and sorghum. The rich, warm gold of this special syrup from the south paired with the near-holographic blue of a shed jay feather is the perfect combination to welcome the closeness of the season.

Sampling the darkest tones from the jay feather, we come up with a slightly greenish blue deepened with gray. This color is a little rustic and very natural. In design, the color is great for use on backgrounds (as it is fairly easy on the eyes) and in themes that call for a 'rugged' feel. See the theoretical logo for Dean & Sons Custom Denim. Here, the blue is married with a vellum neutral and the syrup umber. The tones separate well and accent each other perfectly.

In the home, jay feather and sorghum are a recipe for cozy with a touch of class. The colors are rich and deep, but not shocking or heavy. Here, the walls and ceiling are painted in the jay feather color (Behr Kingfisher 520F-7). The window seat inset is in a slightly lighter hue (Shale Gray 540F-4) and the neutral is a cooler cream (Windsong 390C-3). To warm things up, the upholstery and accents come in unadulterated burnt umber and gold. Throw in a rich, warm oriental rug and you're set for a little reading in the afternoon sun.

Jay feather and sorghum are colors of nature in transition. Summer is giving way to autumn's bounty. The jay calls in the blazing trees and the cane is cooked down into semi-liquid gold. If you're in the market for 'country' with a touch of elegance, give these hues a try!

Patterns can be found here, here, and here.

Color by COLOURlovers

P.S. If you'd like a good cookie recipe using sorghum, check out the chewy ginger cookies on my past post here. I mention molasses in the recipe, but I always use good Kentucky sorghum.