It's how we do the little things - shift an edit 2 frames, finesse an audio transition, or kern our type - that takes us beyond being professional and into "craftsman" status. To become a craftsman requires persistence over time, inquisitiveness, and a healthy dollop of passion.

If you need a little inspiration this (Friday) morning - maybe you can feed off the passion on a posting about... Copperplate Gothic. Yes, that's right - a font:

"Copperplate Gothic’s default ubiquity and, by consequence, broad misuse, has procured it a place among The Designers’ Holy Hatred Font pantheon reigned by Papyrus and Comic Sans — and while there is still no campaign to ban Copperplate Gothic, it does have its detractors. Yet, to this more prevalent Mr. Hyde side of Copperplate Gothic, there is a valiant Dr. Jekyll ready to shine from its own evil cast."

Passion can be infectious... so if you need to catch the flu this morning (as I did), it's a fun read, if maybe a little cerebral.

HT: Daring Fireball

- pi

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Red is Not Funny?

No. I'm not talking about the Red One camera... I'm talking about the color red. Specifically, the psychology of the color red.

In a blog post discussing the use of the color red in film titles and posters, makes the point that use of the color Red in movie promotional materials is the color of the doomed comedy. In the comments of that posting two criticisms of his survey of unfunny comedy posters ring true...

  • His survey of movie posters suffer from selection bias.
  • Some funny movies do make garish use of the color Red.
To get by selection bias, I decided to do some quick research myself and went over to Netflix. I have about 350 movies that I've rated over the past several years. I pulled up Comedies and sorted by Star Ratings. Here are the movie posters (from IMDB) from my top eight comedies, in no particular order:

red_is_not_funny copy

The red in Airplane is muted by the liberal use of blue in the background. Thank You For Smoking uses red as irony, both in its structure as a Lucky Strike package and its opposition to the normal red "No Smoking" signs scattered around our public squares. Clearly, red is a minority color amongst my favorite comedies - but it does have its place.

Now let's glance at my 8 worst rated comedies:


Given the low sample size, I'd say unfunny comedies are statistically as likely to use red as funny comedies. Though it might be fair to say funny comedies seem to use red more deliberately.

Red may indeed be unfunny (and you may think I don't have much of a sense of humor) - unfortunately, looking to movie posters doesn't seem to be the best way to confirm that thesis.

- pi

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