Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Design Icons

What do these two pictures have in common?
You probably guessed it; yep they both have on the same circular glasses. That was the first thing I noticed about these two.  If you don’t know who they are then I’m about to tell you. Iris Apfel (left), designer and American Icon and Chip Kidd (right), an exceptionally talented graphic artist.
Iris Apfel is a fashionista with a lot of flare, style, and design sense. She is an American fashion and style icon. Her style is daring and bold. Just look at some of these pictures and they explain it all.

Lovin' the glasses


Iris' lovely home that she designed

Her hallway
                 She loves to dress up and if she likes it she’s buying it. She has a gift for going to junkyards and flea markets and unburying treasure that others would consider trash until they see what she can do with it. She’s no minimalist by a long shot, but her over the top approach to fashion simply works! There was an exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute of her colorful and highly accessorized wardrobe. It was entitled Rara Avis (Rare Bird): The Irreverent Iris Apfel. At age 88 she is still young and vibrant, she refers to herself as a “geriatric starlet”, but dress for her is just one of the ways she creatively expresses herself. She is also an Interior Designer and recently released her own jewelry line. She is awesome and I love her funky style!
                Now Chip Kidd, he too has his own design style but expresses it with a different type of medium. He is the associate art director at Knopf, a publishing house, where he has been designing one of kind book wrappers since the late ‘80s. Some of his works that he is best known for are the cover of Michael Crichton’s 1990 novel Jurassic Park and the cover of Cormac McCarthy’s “No Country for Old Men”. His fun, creepy, sly, and unpredictable covers have taken book design to another level and his design is a work of art. He has even written a couple books himself, "The Cheese Men." Here are some examples of his book cover designs.
Cover for book "No Country for Old Men"

He loves comic books and has designer covers
 for just about all of them.
Cover of the popular book "Jurassic Park"
His book "The Cheese Monkeys

        Both Iris and Chip are unique in their own sense, but I am especially fond of Iris Apfel. Not because she is an interior designer, but because she truly appreciates and understands what it means to be creative and daring and to go beyond and step outside of the box. I like that she owns her style and embraces it with boldness, meanwhile Chip is passive and downplays the importance of the cover design. I wonder what it would be like to spend an entire day shopping with her. I know that I can definitely learn a thing or two from her. She has already impacted my design aesthetic.  There is nothing wrong with embracing colors and being yourself (no matter who likes it or not). Being comfortable in “the skin” I am in as a designer is the biggest lesson I have taken away from learning about her. I often get caught up in comparing myself to others, but she has inspired me to embrace me and whatever else that means. In my opinion she deserves to be considered an American Icon because she is a perfect example of self-expression and living life to the fullest. Being creative and artistic doesn’t look a certain way; it is whatever you want it to be. Now go forth and do great things!

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