Design inspiration from around the world.

What the FFF?

Founded in 2005 by an ever growing group of designers, illustrators, coders and makers eager to collect and share the best design work they came across, FormFiftyFive soon became an international showcase of creative work.

We scour the world’s best creative talent to keep FormFiftyFive a foremost collection of current design from both the young upstarts and well known masters. We’re constantly on the look out for new features that dig even deeper into what’s happening in the design community, so get in touch if there’s something you’ld like to see on here.

Have a look round, if you see something you love or hate be sure to comment, and drop us a line if there’s a juicy bit of creative gold you’d like to see on here.

Keep it real, the FFF team.

The FFF team

Glenn Garriock — 1558 posts
Graphic designer – Uetze, Germany

Jack Daly — 1185 posts
Graphic designer & Illustrator – Glasgow,…

Lois Daly — 45 posts
Lois Daly – Graphic Designer, Glasgow

Alex Nelson — 80 posts
Designer/coder – Leeds/London/Melbourne

Guy Moorhouse — 46 posts
Independent designer and technologist — London,…

Gil Cocker — 319 posts
Designer & Maker – London, UK

Barry van Dijck — 125 posts
Designer & Illustrator – Breda, The Netherlands

Gui Seiz — 135 posts
Graphic Designer – London, UK

Chris J
Chris Jackson — 71 posts
Graphic Designer – Leeds, UK

Tom Vining
Tom Vining — 12 posts
Graphic Designer – London, UK

Tommy Borgen
Tommy Borgen — 15 posts
Graphic Designer – Oslo, Norway

Clinton Duncan — 24 posts
Creative director – Sydney, Australia

Amanda Jones — 26 posts
Graphic Designer – Ann Arbor, Michigan

Gabriela Salinas — 18 posts
Graphic designer – Monterrey, México.

Felicia Aurora Eriksson
Felicia Aurora Eriksson — 6 posts
Graphic Designer – Melbourne, Australia

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Categories rowsEverything Interviews Books Events Jobs


Unit Editions: Lance Wyman Monograph

There’s some really great design books being published these days from publishers of all shapes and sizes. And then there are Unit Editions books. When Lance Wyman: The Monograph landed with a thud on my desk a few weeks ago I knew I was in for a treat, I’d been looking forward to it all year, but even my high expectations were quickly surpassed. As a huge fan of mid-century modern identity design, particularly that from U.S. designers, this book already stood a good chance of ticking all my boxes, and it delivers on all fronts – its full of beautiful work you’ve probably never seen before – its presentation is generous and does its subject matter justice – and of course it’s brilliantly written and designed as an object (design by Spin).

Adrian & Tony share editorial credit so I spoke to them both to find out a bit more…

FFF: Why Wyman? TB: I have been a Lance fan for a long time. In fact I had a hand in a relatively early appearance of his in the UK. I was asked by the D&AD on behalf of the, then, President Tony Davidson, to suggest an graphic designer for a series of D&AD President’s lectures and I put Lance’s name forward. He was his normal self-effacing self, he’s such a smart, switched on guy and there is never a smile far away.

I think the thing that excited me personally about doing the book was the opportunity to shine a light on his lesser known work. Eyes always light up when the Mexico Olympics are mentioned, and quite right too but he is so much more than that, his career has been overwhelming in many ways, and he is still actively designing, still making great work and is, in every way, a true great. The thinking behind our approach to making the book was to focus on and draw out the formal beauty of his work, the warmth and wit are readily available to any viewer, but it can sometimes be missed how elegant and powerful his work is.

FFF: Do you think this monograph goes some way to putting Lance in his rightful place (in peoples minds) as a designer of huge merit, talent and importance? 

AS: I really hope so, because he is a somewhat neglected and overlooked figure – especially by the design world elites. I have a theory that this is because he is the great ‘public’ designer of our age. What I mean by this is that everything he does is – to use his phrase – ‘out in the street’. So no exquisite identities for cool art galleries, or work for highbrow clients. Instead, he has nearly always worked for public institutions – Mexico Olympics, Mexico City Metro, Minnesota Zoo, etc. – where his work is seen (and used) by millions. To maintain the highest standards of design, and still manage to create work for a mass audience is really, really difficult. But that’s exactly what Lance Wyman does. I hope our book opens people’s eyes to his genius. We can all learn a lot from him.

FFF: How long did the process take of putting together this book?

AS: Over a year of hard work from start to finish. Tony and I spent a week with him in New York last summer and photographed his entire archive and interviewed him at length. Then it was back to London and many hundreds of hours editing, designing, retouching, and finally putting the book together and getting it printed and distributed.

FFF: Did you allow the work to dictate the format/shape/size of the book? (The squat format beautifully frames so much of the work). 

AS: The square format came from Lance himself. He rather shyly ’suggested’ it. He didn’t interfere in the design or editorial process – he trusted Tony and me to do a good job. Initially Tony was hesitant about the square format, but if you notice, it’s not exactly square, so it was a happy compromise.

FFF: If it sells out can you imagine offering a reprint in a smaller format like with Lubalin?

AS: No plans at this stage. Initial response has been fantastic – but it’s early days. The deluxe edition sold out almost immediately, and the ‘normal’ edition is trucking along nicely. We’ll investigate the possibilities of a second edition when we get close to selling out.

FFF: Who’s next on your hitlist of figures of historical importance (as opposed to modern/current practitioners) and when will you be making another announcement as to whats coming up next year?

AS: We have a very long wish list. Some of them will happen. Others will fall by the wayside. We have already announced books on Universal Everything and Morag Myerscough. But there are some corkers in the pipeline. Including one that we will be announcing next week. Stand by . . .

Go treat yourself, or put it on your Christmas list!

Edition of 2000 Hardback, black cover and white foil Two paper stocks CMYK + Pantone 464pp 280mm x 250mm


Design Manchester 15

This October sees the triumphant return of Manchester’s creative festival Design Manchester, celebrating creativity, collaboration and inclusivity in the worlds of art, design, illustration, film, animation and photography. Now entering its third year, the ever-growing festival has become a staple of the city’s diverse and thriving cultural calendar, whilst also functioning as a highlight for creatives across the UK. With a theme of Know How, events for 2015 span the realms of Design How, Design Now, Film How, Music How and more, which together build a rich programme of talks, workshops, exhibitions, screenings, debates and a full weekend celebrating the love of print.

There will be a series of exclusive talks, including Design How, which welcomes key figures in the design industry including independent creative agency Territory, global design firm IDEO, London-based design studio Hudson-Powell, Brand & Motion agency Territory Studio, Director of design at the Government Digital Service Ben Terrett and Clive Grinyer, User Experience Director at Barclays.

Music How is an evening in conversation with some of Manchester’s musical legends, New Order’s Stephen Morris will discuss his illustrious career spanning over 30 years, following the release of New Order’s new album Music Complete. He’ll be joined by a leading light of the UK live industry, Jon Drape, and writer, journalist, DJ and creative producer, Luke Bainbridge, who will talk about their work together organising the creative triumph that is Festival No 6.

Other highlights include Design Now which features Parisian illustrator Parisian Malika Favre, graphic design studio Hudson Powell and co-founder of Lemon Jelly and Airside Fred Deakin.

As a showcase of Print Now, Manchester Print Festival, supported G . F Smith, will take over the People’s History Museum across one weekend with over 50 stalls selling independent artwork, along with free hands-on workshops in letterpress, screen printing, origami, badge making, paper flower creations, doodle wall and collage work.

Last year’s festival boasted 19 sold out events, 1099 workshop attendees and over 20,000 visitors, as well as a total of 20 original works and highlights including speakers Adrian Shaughnessy, Rejane Dal Bello, Supermundane’s Rob Lowe, Ross Phillips, and Michael C Place of Build, plus an adidas Spezial exhibition showcasing 800 pairs of collectors’ footwear, and a one-day installation of Helen Storey’s Dress of Glass and Flame.

Design Manchester 15 is supported by Arts Council England, the Manchester School of Art, part of Manchester Metropolitan University, and Manchester City Council.

For further information, announcements, updates and ticket information please visit

@designmcr / #DesignMCR15


New Laurence King titles

Now and again books come across our path here at FFF that we just have to share with you. Since the rise of the graphic design blog, and aggregator sites, the need for ‘overview’ design books has decreased somewhat – which makes coming across good ones all the more exciting. In such books the quality of the content is often reflective of the curator, and in these two instances from Laurence King that quality shines through.

Graphic Design Visionaries is by Caroline Roberts, founder of Grafik magazine, she knows a thing or two about design history having written several books, and in this latest 312 page slab she looks at 75 of the world’s most influential designers, their fascinating personal stories and significant works that have shaped the field.

Arranged in chronological order, the book shows the development of design, from early innovators such as Edward McKnight Kauffer and Alexey Brodovitch to key figures of mid-century Swiss Design and corporate American branding. The book profiles masters of typography, such as Wim Crouwel; visionary magazine designers, such as Leo Lionni and Cipe Pineles; designers who influenced the world of film, such as Saul Bass and Robert Brownjohn; and the creators of iconic poster work, such as Armin Hofmann, Rogério Duarte and Yusaku Kamekura.

Combining insightful text and key visual examples, this is a dynamic and richly illustrated guide to the individuals whose vision has defined the world of graphic design. If you are looking to brush up on your design history, or inspire someone to discover it for themselves, this is a great place to start.

Type: New Perspectives in Typography is edited by the hugely talented leading typographers Henrik Kubel and Scott Williams (better known as A2/SW/HK) and is an A to Z showcase of more than 100 carefully selected contemporary designers, including the best examples of their current work, and also features an introduction by Rick Poynor. These are typographers at the very top of their game, so when they curate, we take note.

Featured designers include David Pearson, Philippe Apeloig and Anthony Burrill, among others, alongside essays by acclaimed design writers Emily King, Paul Shaw, Monika Parrinder and Colin Davies that explore the past and future of type design. This book will encourage and inspire the next generation of designers as well as provide a sourcebook for seasoned designers and educators. It’s a fantastic looking book full of inspiring work.


Rob Clarke

Hard to believe we’ve never before shared the incredible work of Rob Clarke! Rob is a prolific designer of type and lettering, just a quick scroll through his site gives you an indication of his rate of output, and his site has just been updated with a stack of new projects. He’s responsible for the curves of some of the world’s largest and most recognisble brands including Air Asia, Dulux, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Reckitt Benckiser, Barclays and Cable & Wireless.


Joseph Alessio

Joseph Alessio is a typographic illustrator and animator— who also art directs and writes, doing double-duty as a copywriter for projects, and occasionally write on type, lettering & design for sites like Smashing MagazineStemmings and Tuts+. His work is playful and varied, much of it animated as seen on his site. He’s also a nice guy, so you should definitely follow him on Instagram if you’re not already.


Studio Playlist 05: Saffron

Next up on the FFF jukebox are Saffron, who are the fith in our Studio Playlist series to gift us with a 55-track insight into the sounds of their studio.

You can listen to it via Spotify here! Thanks to Rashna and Rémy for taking the time.

— More music? Check out our previous playlists here: Studio Playlist 04: Animade Studio Playlist 03: Eight Inc Studio Playlist 02: Anagrama Studio Playlist 01: Moving Brands


AP Framework by Accept & Proceed

Accept and Proceed got in touch to tell us about AP Framework — a lovely new, four-weight display typeface designed and developed by the studio and digitised by Colophon Foundry.

As part of London Design Festival, AP Framework will be exhibited between 19th September and 30th October 2015 in 43m3, Accept & Proceed’s project space on Kingsland Road. Within this space, the typeface will become a physical exploration of velocity through typography, layout and construction detail.

Head along to find out more — the typeface will be available for free download during the exhibition.


I Wonder What it’s Like to be Dyslexic

It’s perhaps a reflection of the success of funding model/platform Kickstarter that a few of our recent posts have been crowdfunded. Sam Barclay is back with the second edition of his book “I Wonder What it’s Like to be Dyslexic” that aims to provide the reader with a design-lead experience of what it feels like to be dyslexic with typography at the forefront. I caught up with Sam to find out a bit more about the project and this new revised edition of the book…

Read more


NASA Graphics Standards Manual

Jesse Reed and Hamish Smyth (who were behind last year’s NYCTA Graphics Standards Manual reissue) got in touch about their latest Kickstarter campaign to reissue the 1975 NASA Graphics Standards Manual.

Intended to be a celebration of the great work designed by Richard Danne and Bruce Blackburn in 1974, and famously rescinded in 1992. Each page of the manual will be scanned and printed using CYMK + 5 Pantone® spot colors and will be sealed in a static metallic shielding pouch.

We are huge fans of the project and hope that you’ll help get this campaign funded. Head over to Kickstarter and get involved!


Floating points

You’ve seen timelapse/stop-motion light painting before, but never like this! This experimental video created by Pablo Barquín, Junior Martínez, Nathan Grimes and Anna Diaz Ortuño is produced by a light-painting machine that, frame by frame, draws 3D animated figures in a real environment.

Full credits here.


Out The Box #8: Trapped in Suburbia

Trapped in Suburbia from Den Haag conceive and create visual identities, rooms, books, websites, posters, exhibitions, lectures and workshops, teach at universities in Russia, China or England and have accumalated an incredibly varied portfolio.

Next Friday on 4th September Trapped in Suburbia are coming to Hannover in Germany for the 8th Out The Box event. A series of talks that FFF has supported from the beginning.

If you are in the area, make sure you get a ticket!


Friday: 7pm Location: Edelstall, Schwarzer Bär 2, 30449 Hannover Tickets: 10 € Early Birds / 15 € Regular + incl. Aftershowparty


Advice to Sink in Slowly Kickstarter

It’s 4 years since we last featured Advice to Sink in Slowly, the brilliant project established by John Stanbury almost a decade ago. Since 2006 both recent graduates and established artists, designers and illustrators have designed almost 100 posters for the project, passing on advice in a creative way.

John is using Kickstarter to try and raise £6,000 to enable ATSIS to print, package and post 3,500 free posters to first year students across the UK this Autumn. If the goal is met, individual students, student societies and student unions will be able to request a poster(s) through their website from late September onwards.

There’s some great rewards on offer, so dig deep and help them out.


Sawdust: Kobe Bryant Typeface

Sawdust launched a fine looking branded typeface for NBA basketball player Kobe Bryant a few weeks back. We caught up with Sawdust’s Rob Gonzales to find out more about the project, who also sent us some exclusive work in progress images.

Hi Rob, can you tell us a bit about the brief?

We were approached by Nike / Jordan to develop a fully functioning display typeface for their signature NBA basketball player Kobe Bryant. The brief was to develop a bespoke typeface based on Kobe’s logo-mark to work alongside and expand on his existing branding.

This isn’t your first branded typeface. Which challenges did you face on this project?

This would become our second NBA brand typeface for Nike / Jordan following on from our previous type work for Kevin Durant.

In this instance the Kobe logo-mark contained no typographic cues as with the Kevin Durant branding, so this time we focused on the aesthetics and defining lines of the logo to develop the letterforms. We were very much inspired by the star-like negative space that is created in the central point of his logo-mark.

What makes a great branded typeface for a sports personality like Kobe?

Like with any bespoke typeface the idea was to have something that exists exclusively for the player and him as a brand. We worked closely with the designers at Nike to realise something that is unique, versatile and very much on brand for Kobe Bryant.

Cheers Rob! Make sure you guys check out the rest of their excellent work

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