What's All This Then?

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What's All This Then?

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Sunday Edition

This is our studio site. Among lots of other things, we run Field Notes Brand,
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Coudal Partners

Field Notes for Fall

Dropping Dimes

Months of research and a host of tests and solving production issues have led to our Fall limited-edition release for Field Notes. It's an homage to an 1860's American publishing phenomenon and it's called The Dime Novel Edition.

A Six Tone Scale

True to the Blobbiness

We've long-admired the dynamism of a mural that is hangs on the north side of the Wicker Park Bucktown Chamber of Commerce, on Ashland Avenue. Once we renovated and moved into our new studio space, we decided to track down who was responsible, with the idea of doing something similar for our main work space. The artists, Gwendolyn Zabicki and Kent Smith, were up for the idea, and also for us filming them painting the 12' x 8', 3-panel artwork. Thanks a million to them.

New From Field Notes


We're proud of the short film (spot?) we made for a product partnership with the unstoppable Bellroy from Australia. Check out the new Everyday Inspiration, custom, compact leather cover.

Thanks to Big Delicious Planet for inviting us into their Canteen for the location, and to Spencer Tweedy for letting us use his song "Temple State" on the track. It's in heavy rotation at HQ currently.

One From Way Way Back

How Do You Spell Courage?

A lot has changed around here since 2005: waistlines, hairlines, fashions, a big new studio, and new businesses to fill it with. Here's a Throwback for Thursday, in beautiful standard definition. The production values might leave a little to be desired, and the "new Canadian restaurant" in the neighborhood may have closed, but the film itself actually holds up. Sort of. Presenting Copy Goes Here.

You Can Count On Change

That’s a Wrap

After a long, successful run, we're shutting down our advertising network, The Deck. Jim posted about the decision and the details at the Deck site. John Gruber was one of the network's very first affiliates. John published a way-too-generous piece about The Deck at Daring Fireball. Thanks for that, and to all the affiliates, advertisers and readers who supported the network over the years.

Last year we moved into a new studio in Chicago, and in the back, near where we do screen-printing and other messy stuff, there's a shelf for projects we made, operated and eventually, shut down. We'll make some room for The Deck there, right next to Jewelboxing, The Seed Conference and The Show. We haven't stashed away Layer Tennis just yet, but who knows? Anyhow, as always, we're scheming about the future. And, of course, we're making these notebooks.

2017 Tournament of Books

Literary Cage Match

Once again, our Field Notes Brand was the title sponsor of The Morning News Tournament of Books which is now complete! If you're not familiar with the ToB, Angela Chen has written this excellent Brief History of the Tournament to get you up to speed.

We need your help. We created a special Memo Book for the tourney and are raising funds for 826 National, an amazing seven-chapter network that provides under-resourced students, ages 6-18 with opportunities to explore their creativity and improve their writing skills. Dig deep people.

Choose to Go to the Moon

Over the Moon

It's not quite like faking the moon landing, but the film we made for the release of our Field Notes Quarterly Edition Lunacy, was made entirely using the same sort of practical, analog effects that you'd need to employ if you were going to stage that event, back in the day. So fun. So messy. BTW: The Lunacy Edition is now sold out.

Moco Fun at the new HQ

We Go Round in Circles

Steve bought a cool motion-control rig. We wanted to make some sort of recap the Field Notes Quarterly Editions from 2016. So we made this film. Added bonus, it provides a nice view of the new HQ.

JC at Creative Mornings

What Are You
Afraid Of?

Here's Jim's presentation from the inaugural edition of Chicago Creative Mornings. Thanks to Tina, Mig, Gravity Tank and everyone who showed up.

Because it's There

A Winter’s Tale

"One climbs, one sees. One descends, one sees no longer, but one has seen." —Rene Daumal. Why did we do it? Because it is there. Or was anyhow. Presenting Above the Sun, a true story.

New from Field Notes

Eternal, Shiny
and Chrome

Just in time for gift giving, a metallic embossed cover, a new binding and orange spine, plus Drapln-designed wrapping paper and a "To/From" sticker. Our Field Notes winter limited-edition is Black Ice.

Guest Editors

Helpful and
Mostly Polite

A list of all the brilliant people who have helped us by guest editing Fresh Signals can be found here.

Other recent features are listed on Page Two.

Fresh Signals

Penn and Teller: The Best Magicians in the World, SNL 1986. bb-10.20

This long 1983 Ansel Adams Playboy Interview serves to remind us of the great photographer's dedication to his craft, his semi-genial curmudgeonry, and his environmental awareness. bb-10.20

"When I make comics, and think about how one image relates to the next one, and how much time I want a reader to spend on a page, and whether or not to use narration or to be able to read someone's thoughts, I think of all that in terms of how I think about movies." Movie Poster of the Week: The Art of Nathan Gelgud. jc-10.20

1981 Delorean Sales Video. Fab. jc-10.19

Brutalist architecture in Chicago. dw-10.19

United Nations International Peace stamps by Stranger & Stranger. dw-10.19

Lucky for us, photographer Stefan Draschan is very, very patient. jc-10.19

LA's Metro Manners PSA videos. dw-10.18

Dream houses drawn by kids and rendered by professionals. dw-10.18

The Social Network Tarots by Jacopo Rosati. dw-10.18

Think of the Children is a parenting simulator that challenges players to perform a series of simple tasks while simultaneously keeping their children alive. dw-10.18

Atlas of the Underworld is the first complete mapping of subducted plates in the Earth's mantle and their geological interpretation. dw-10.18

Pressing Matters, a magazine about the passion and process behind modern printmaking. dw-10.17

If we're going to have a panhandle, why not commit to it? dw-10.17

Explore other planets and moons in Google Maps. dw-10.17

"Inspired by letterpress printing and childlike observations – The Typefaces are simply faces in type. All 26 Roman letters have been paired with rhymes in a charming print-on-demand book. The idea invites your participation as the faces are mostly 'found' within the negative space which in turn creates an emotional connection." dw-10.17

Grandma would be proud of me. dw-10.17

"A sewing sampler can be the only trace of a 17th- to 19th-century woman's existence, and the Fitzwilliam Museum at Cambridge is recovering this lost history through over 100 examples." ms-10.16

Alexander Perrin's Short Trip. Get on board. jc-10.16

Georges Perec books reissued by Modernist with covers by Lars Sundh. Yowza. jc-10.16

A thin carbon fiber chair that weighs just over a pound. dw-10.16

"We have hit the mother lode!" says Laura Cadonati, an astrophysicist at Georgia Institute of Technology and LIGO's deputy spokesperson. "This is really the first time we have multimessenger detection of a single astrophysical event, where gravitational waves are telling us the story of what happened before the cataclysm and the electromagnetic emissions are telling us what happened after." ms-10.16

The illustration portfolio of Ugo Gattoni. Crazy detail for beautiful projects, including Ruinart. Via TMN. jc-10.16

10 iconic logos. 156 Americans. 80 hours of drawing from memory ms-10.13

Love this, a smokeless wood-burning fire pit that you can also cook on, the BioLite FirePit. ms-10.13

Ciclotramas rope installations by Janaina Mello Landini. dw-10.13

Related to the last. A classic reference. Paul Brians' Commonly Made Suggestions about commonly made errors, and more importantly, Non-Errors, "those usages people keep telling you are wrong but which are actually standard in English." Which is exactly the sort of attitude up with which I will not put jc-10.13

A to Z of English usage myths. Right on Stan. jc-10.13

Printer's Ale packaging by Codo Design. Smart. jc-10.13

Mark Laita's Snakes. jc-10.13

Trailer for season two of Stranger Things ms-10.13

Stay at Mr. Anderson's House. ms-10.12

Bird Nest Villa at Segera Retreat in Kenya. dw-10.12

Chicago's most recognizable, timeless and contemporary neon signs. dw-10.12

"If the sight of an exasperated Colombian shouting "Señor Wilbur, you have to move too!" (…) floods your brain with the kind of dopamine rush most people associate with the deepest kind of love, or maybe cocaine, then you and I are on the same wavelength, my friend." bb-10.12

Jim Wilson and 40 years of news photography. jc-10.12

Old men who always keep a notebook in their top pocket: What are you writing down all the time? AskReddit. jc-10.12

Of course I have beefs with this, and plenty of them, but respect to Bill Wyman for all 139 songs from the Only Band That Matters, ranked from worst to first. jc-10.11

A history of the world in five typefaces, by Paul McNeil. jc-10.11

This is the best video I've seen all week. via Kottke mcj-10.11

Page Two contains the previous 40 Fresh Signals, recent features, a key to the icons and the categorical archives.

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