Airey Force One

November 20th, 2012 by Mat Dolphin

David Airey is a designer and writer based in Ireland. When he’s not looking after clients around the globe he somehow finds the time to run the brilliant design review websites Logo Design Love and Identity Designed, (bookmark them immediately if you haven’t already) as well as amassing a huge following through his prolific Twitter activity. 2009 saw the publication of his first book. Based on his original website, Logo Design Love was a runaway success and belongs on the bookshelf of any decent design studio.

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It’s All In The Mind

October 23rd, 2012 by Mat Dolphin

Most graphic designers love the FedEx logo. Designed by Landor Associates, it’s simple, it’s clean, it’s been around since 1994 but still doesn’t look dated. The thing most designers really love about it, however, is the ‘hidden’ arrow. The little nod to progress and movement that sits in the negative space between the ‘E’ and the ‘x’. Practically everyone (designer or otherwise) knows it’s there, but being in on the worst kept secret in design does give a feeling of being in the know.

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Justified Magazine

October 1st, 2012 by Mat Dolphin

Almost a year ago to the day we received an email from an enthusiastic second year Graphic Design student at Bournemouth university. On any given day we get inundated with emails from students, people looking for work placements and chancers, but we always try and reply to everyone. This day in 2011 was no different. We’re still a little bemused when we hear from people who like what we do and contact us about the prospect of working for us. Us? Really? But in line with our If You Give Love, You Get Love™ mantra, we feel it’s only fair to reply and help out if we can.

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Five Things 017

March 30th, 2012 by Mat Dolphin

You know how it works by now, we show you Five Things we’ve seen this week that we think are of interest, and you love ‘em. Simple as that. Always a random mix, this post includes amazing architecture, scary monsters, beautiful bookmaking, a nose into someones diary, and lot of lipstick. Enjoy.

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Ten Questions 025 – Abigail Dixon

February 22nd, 2012 by Mat Dolphin

This is the 25th post in our Ten Questions series and as it’s a bit of a milestone we thought we’d do something special. Since we started the series, we’ve spoken to some of our favourite designers, illustrators, writers, artists and creative directors. This time, after months of talking to her agent and countless emails, we’ve finally managed to pin down a response from a uniquely talented individual who can turn her hand to all of these disciplines and many more. A true visionary and all round creative renaissance woman, ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce Abigail Dixon. Writing, illustrating, art directing and overseeing production of her own independently published books, she has forged a unique, distinctive style that is gaining a huge amount of attention within the creative industries. Expect big things from this one, you heard it here first…

See below for what happened when Abigail was kind enough to take some time out of her day to answer our Ten Questions.

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2011 Round-up

December 22nd, 2011 by Mat Dolphin

2011. It’s been busy, it’s been stupidly quick and most importantly, it’s been good. Along with the constant stresses and pressures that go along with doing what we do, this year has been a decidedly positive one here at Dolphin Heights. We thought a good way to round off the year was to take a quick look back at what we’ve been up to in the last 12 months. What’s been keeping us busy in and out of work, where we’ve been, what we’ve been doing and who we’ve been doing it with.

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Ten Questions 020 – John Paul Thurlow

September 14th, 2011 by Mat Dolphin

A retreat to Japan in an attempt to escape London for a while was the starting point for John Paul Thurlow’s best known work. Whilst drawing the contents of his room he came across a travel sized copy of British Elle and recreated the cover as a pencil drawing (amending the title to read ‘Hell’ as an expression of his mood). From that point on John Paul has made it his mission to ‘recreate cover art for every great magazine and record’ he owns. The meticulously intricate drawings are far from perfect reproductions – they are filled with his own additional scrawlings, notes, thoughts, feelings and scribbles to make them a one of a kind piece of art based on a mass produced piece of media.

John Paul was kind enough to take the time out to answer our Ten Questions.

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Five Things 013

May 6th, 2011 by Mat Dolphin

It’s Friday, it’s sunny and it’s time once again to let you know about Five Things we’ve seen this week which we like. Encompassing a number of areas including advertising, design, second hand shops, passport stamps, jelly and toys, there’s sure to be something for everyone.

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More socks?

December 7th, 2010 by Mat Dolphin

With Christmas fast approaching, it’s time to start planning that panic-stricken trawl around over-crowded shops to buy your loved ones that novelty toothbrush holder you suspect they’ve probably always wanted. Maybe.

Being the caring and sharing types we are here at Mat Dolphin, we thought we’d lend you a helping hand by giving you a few ideas for gift ideas for the ever difficult to please designer in your life. Every designer loves a beautifully produced book and we’ve scoured the bookshelves to find the best of the bunch in design literature.

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Five Things 007

October 1st, 2010 by Mat Dolphin

It’s that time again… Five creative and inspiring things that we’ve seen this week. Ready…steady….GO!

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Five Things 004

July 1st, 2010 by Mat Dolphin

Here we go, the next installment of the Five Things I’ve Seen This Week series. Links to design related niceness that should help you on your way to the weekend.

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Kubrick by Design 002

June 23rd, 2010 by Mat Dolphin

In the second of our series looking into the life and career of Stanley Kubrick. We thought we would shed some light on what was to be his most epic work. Widely touted as The Greatest Movie Never Made, his biopic of Napoleon Bonaparte was in development stages for a staggering 40 years and a true labour of love for the director. Renowned for his meticulous research, Kubrick amassed 25,000 index cards documenting each day of Napoleons life to gain an insight into his subject.

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Guest Post – Neil Ayres & The New Goodbye

June 1st, 2010 by Mat Dolphin

Mat Dolphin invited me on the blog to talk about The New Goodbye, an app that I’ve produced with Russell Quinn, the developer who created the hugely successful Small Chair app for McSweeney’s, and who recently helped bring Creative Review’s Annual to the iPhone.

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D&AD Annual 2009

September 24th, 2009 by Mat Dolphin

The new D&AD Annual launched yesterday at the London Design Festival.

The members’ edition was art directed by Peter Saville and designed by recent design graduate Luke Sanders. A general version will go on sale next year published by Taschen.


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How do you eat yours?

August 28th, 2009 by Mat Dolphin

It’s a strange phenomenon.

You’d think there would be shelves upon Magma bookshelves filled with ‘How to run a design studio’, but until recently it was a topic without a single printed sheet devoted to our most humble of spaces.

When you start out as a graphic designer you immediately hope and believe that one day, just maybe if you get the right experience and luck you’ll have your own studio. But when that time comes around, how do you run it? What makes it successful? What would motivate your team to stay inspired?

It’s a bizarre omission as the studio is a designers natural habitat. Without a studio we’d all be bedroom based and lacking inspiration from others.

To answer these questions and fill that gap on the shelf Tony Brook, founder of consultancy Spin, and Adrian Shaughnessy, co-founder of design group Intro have independently set up Unit Edition, a publishing venture set up ‘by designers for designers’. Their first book launch is to be Studio Culture: The Secret Life of the Graphic Design Studio.


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