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From Nick Pettit at Treehouse: I attended a high school that has an amazing visual arts program. We would regularly produce artwork, put it on the wall, and then gather around to say what we liked and didn’t like. More importantly, we would explain why we felt that way. This structured feedback is called critique. The younger students would often take it personally and sometimes cry hysterically, but it was for the best, because after a few years they would start to produce stellar work and provide excellent feedback. At the time, I didn’t really think about the broader applications of critique beyond traditional art, but it’s incredibly valuable for building durable careers and companies.
Critique is a method for analyzing subjective ideas with the intention of discovering good qualities and areas that can be improved. In other words, critique is a synonym for “constructive criticism” or “giving feedback.” In a professional creative setting, such as a web design agency, it’s an essential skill to master. Creatives and non-creatives have to give feedback to one another regularly, and if that feedback is blended with too much ambiguity or tense emotions, the work environment can become a toxic cocktail of contempt.
Just like there’s good and bad science, there’s good and bad critique. It’s difficult to perfectly define “good” critique, because that only comes with practice, but here are some basic guidelines that can help.
From The Alcalde: In early May 2013 Gregory Curtis was sharing some wine in the Paris apartment of a young couple, an American man and a French woman, and their 18-month-old daughter. The little girl had toys and books spread across the floor and we were happily watching her pushing things from one pile into another when the man mentioned that he was learning French at the Sorbonne. The course was called “French Language and Civilization” and was designed specifically for foreigners. Life can change in a moment and hearing about the course was one of those moments for me. I knew I had to take that course.
From Contently: Apple fever took over the Internet today with the announcement of three exciting new products: the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and the Apple Watch. But while everyone was tweeting about Apple’s latest efforts to lead the tech gospel, they were missing the most major industry announcement of September: the launch of IKEA’s new bookbook. · Watch video →
From Quartz: One of Apple’s most successful products—which rarely gets recognized as such—is made not of aluminum and glass, but of words and pictures. The Apple keynote is the tool the company uses a few times a year to unveil its other products to millions of people.
To understand their hidden structure, Quartz reviewed more than a dozen Apple keynotes, logging and analyzing key elements. Here’s what we found.
Thursday, September 11, 2014 · Topics: typography
From Fontshop: Type systems are equally useful for both experts and beginners. Versatile as they are, they solve multidimensional typographic challenges whilst remaining foolproof in use. FontShop contributor Ferdinand Ulrich provides a family tree of type systems. Originating from the first wood cut typefaces, via Adrian Frutiger’s infamous Univers system, through to digital super families.
From Webdesigner Depot: Southwest Airlines has just unveiled their new branding, and it’s a huge departure from the old. The new identity includes new paint jobs for their planes, a new logo, and a completely revamped website. It’s been met with mixed reviews on Twitter. Some people love the new site and hate the new logo; some people love the new logo but hate the new site; others love or hate everything about it.
From NY Times: Apple may well be the only tech company on the planet that would dare compare itself to Picasso. In a class at the company’s internal training program, the so-called Apple University, the instructor likened the 11 lithographs that make up Picasso’s “The Bull” to the way Apple builds its smartphones and other devices. The idea: Apple designers strive for simplicity just as Picasso eliminated details to create a great work of art.