All three were very enjoyable, but the cars deserved most of the attention, and plenty of photos. One of things I particularly love about 1960s American cars is the style, particularly in the details like
Even vents for the motor:
I have to admit, I was slightly motivated by the fact I’ve finally download Instagram to my new phone, so Hot Rods and Muscle Cars lend themselves to retro filters. But I’ve always been fascinated by the style of 60′s American cars. Something about the idea of a huge engine, soggy suspension and steering, combined with stylistic touches to add flair to something with the natural aerodynamics of a bungalow.
It’s a reminder of the impact that design can have on something which will only become more utilitarian and commoditized in the future. Packaging an automated, battery-powered people mover isn’t going to have the same battle of form and function as it does when you’re squeezing in a 5.7 litre petrol engine, and being shuttled forward by a serious of small explosions under the bonnet.
And how real enduring beauty comes from marrying form and function. Muscle Cars aren’t pretty in the same way as a Ferrari or Porsche can be. They’re burgers, blue jeans, work boots and rock ‘n’ roll. And in my mind, all the better for it – I wonder how many ‘working class’ icons will come out of the current era?
Speaking to a good friend and branding consultant, I mentioned that most of the brands I love are small or tiny companies doing different things. When it comes to mainstream brands, there are a scant few – two that spring to mind are Uniglo and Onitsuka Tigers, making me seem like a Japanophile, but even then it’s for their selvedge jeans and classic sneakers.
There’s the iPhone of course. But will a scratched original iPhone still combine form and function in 40 or 50 years time? Modern technology is generally made to be disposable.
And maybe for physical products, it’s coming to an end as 3D Printing means we’ll have more access to whatever we want, no matter how obscure or unusual.
Which means for me it’s probably time to spend more effort on the style of online sites. The impact of Pinterest-style sites for web and mobile has already been well-documented, but a recent Wired article on Jack Dorsey went into his appreciation of selvage denim and how the background for a new Square icon was a pair of particular high-end designer selvage jeans, rather than a flat blue colour.
It’s time websites gave more emotion and more feeling. I always thought that if any action on the website could feel as satisfying as opening a new packet of cigarettes, that website would be guaranteed success. Maybe it’s time to edge back from effortless clicking, swiping and sharing to put some meaning back into our designs and interactions?