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2024 Design Inspiration: Alex Edition

Happy new year everybody! To kick off 2024, we wanted to share some of our favorite sources of inspiration, ranging from what inspires our design styles to just what keeps us in the zone when we’re in the thick of it on a project. The stash in this specific post is from me, Alex (hi!), so if it seems to skew more towards vintage-y stuff… That’s kind of my holy grail for inspiration.

Oh, man. I love the Letterform Archive. This is full of treasure, especially for someone like me who takes a lot of inspiration from physical media of times’ past. Packaging, advertisements, old-school prints; it has everything, without being too overwhelming, like sometimes Pinterest can be. I especially like punk-adjacent work, like zines and flyers, so their archive of that stuff is absolutely a gold mine. Here’s a couple of my favorites from this page.

Flyer on brownish peach paper with rough type advertising a show for the bands Flipper with Salvation Army, Animal Things, Beast, Bad Religion, and Church Police on Broadway. There is an image in the middle featuring a dolphin and an ice cube with a crosshair in the center. Flyer on orange paper advertising the band MCM and the Monster at the Oasis with the openers GWAR and Femme Fatales on Halloween in 1987. A flyer reading "Home taping is killing record-companies... and it's about time." Features an image of a man with a crudely scribbled on sad face, with a graph behind him, depicting a downward drop.Flyer on plain white paper featuring handwritten and collaged lettering to advertise Nuclear Heroes playing at Ollie's Radcliffe Hall on November 8th in 1984. There is an image of Richard Nixon with a TV drawn around it, and cracks on top of the image. A flyer on yellow paper advertising the concert of the band Flipper with the openers 45's, No Alternative, Black Flag, Belfast Cowboys, and Impacent Youth. The rest of the flyer is a collage of different words cut out from other sources. Images of the band members are depicted on the right side.

If that’s not your cup of tea, they also have tons of archival type specimens that can give you that spark for your next project.

Graphic featuring a green circular gradient in the center with a repeating alphabet in green in the background. The foreground features a type stamp, with "Type Faces" and "Descriptive Index and Price List of ATF Type Foundry Products" written below it.Repeating green, black, and white stripes with "Block-Kursiv" written in each green and white stripe.The word "Casino" is written in a deconstructed manner, in black and yellow.Book spread featuring trapezoid shapes on the left, with "Sandwich" and "A reversed stress typeface" written. On the right side, the same is written within a rectangle of stripes. Both feature different weights of the typeface.

Okay, okay, if more modern, recent design styles are what really get your projects going, what I do to look for inspiration that’s more of this decade, is simply go on Behance or Dribbble, and check out what other designers have created. This personally helps me hone a more targeted style for whatever project I’m working on, and, in general, continues to mold my personal design tastes.

Finally, I’m gonna leave you off with some music I love to help me focus while in the creative process. I hardly know anybody that works in complete silence, so maybe some of these can be an addition to your playlist in the new year.

Here’s a few selections of mine, but check out the entire team’s inspiration playlist here!

*This post was written by a human named Alex.