These are now available with proceeds going to a hospice local to the pottery.
They are handsome things, and wonderfully – they have the BERG logo stamped on the bottom (don’t attempt to view this while mug full of tea)
It’s fair to say this post is a little behind-the-times, but I finally want to get round to recording the story behind my “Get Excited & Make Things” image – and also releasing the files, which was always my intention…
I was a little frustrated with myself and the world one day, and went to sit in Hoxton Square to do the Guardian crossword as a remedy.
Flicking through the G2 section I came across a short article about the “Keep Calm & Carry On” WW2 poster phenomenon.
It occurred to me that this was exactly the wrong sentiment for this age – and in fact the stoicism it recommends was been viewed ironically in the main by those who purchased it.
I started sketching on the paper a contrary statement, where stiff upper lip was replaced by a stiff upper arm from soldering…
The royal crown was replaced by one made of spanners (or wrenches, for our yanqui friends) – and Get Excited & Make Things was born.
I posted it to flickr, where to date it has had over 90k views. It got turned into t-shirt of the week by my friends at Howies (and became their fastest selling shirt ever, apparently!) with the proceeds going towards their Do Lectures.
Then, an art print by Jen and friends at 20×200 – with proceeds going to Creative Commons.
I only mention it’s success (though gratifying personally, obviously – and I’m very happy that it’s provided some small contributions to good causes) – because it seems that it has resonated with so many people.
And that’s the really amazing thing – that there might be a determination, en-masse – to really get the blood pumping and make our way out of the messes we’ve created.
With that in mind, I’m offering the original files under a CC-non-commercial, attribution, share-alike licence.
If you want to use the images for commercial means, we can talk of course – about you giving some donation to a good cause in exchange. I say that, as it’s cropped up in a few places being used without prior permission for commercial ends…
So here they are.
Thank you to everyone so far who has bought a shirt, a print – or just printed it out and stuck in up in their work place or college.
Please stay excited, please stay making.
On the (27 hour) plane ride back from New Zealand, I watched a lot of movies, some unremarkable – some wonderful. Watching Happy-Go-Lucky was painful for some reasons, and beautiful for others – but it definately hit me with the pink laserbeam between the eyes.
Watching classics like The Apartment and Manhattan made me wonder at the romances we’d write about some cities, and Slumdog Millionaire bizarrely seemed like a continuation of that: a romance of the maximum-city.
But, beside that – everytime a movie finished, the entertainment system reset to it’s main menu, with one of those airline entertainment system pseudo-radio stations playing on a loop.
And I hit the same point in the loop everytime.
And at that point in the loop played the same song everytime.
The song was a romance of the city.
A romance of electricity and colour and life and density of opportunity.
Electricity so fine Look and dry your eyes
The song was “Stepping Out” by Joe Jackson.
Go and listen.
I’ll stay put.
In recent months I’ve definitely fallen into a Collapsitarian rut of sorts.
We - Are young but getting old before our time
This won’t do.
“Pessimism is a luxury of good times. In difficult times, pessimism is a
self-fulfilling, self-inflicted death sentence.”
That’s where the action is, where the flow is felt, and where design wrangling of the sweetest kind can be done.
So, more wrangling, less hand-wringing.
Big bets should be made.
It took at 27 hour flight to realise that 27 years ago in 1982, Joe Jackson knew this and planted a time capsule into culture to help me with 2009.
It’s The Anti-Collapsitarian Anthem.
We - So tired of all the darkness in our lives With no more angry words to say Can come alive Get into a car and drive To the other side
That’s some foresight, right there. So if you are feeling a little collapsitarian, try stepping out.
You - Can dress in pink and blue just like a child And in a yellow taxi turn to me and smile We’ll be there in just a while If you follow me