how did taylor swift go from Red to folklore? we don't mean musically, and we've spent a longer time than we dare admit wondering why the switch to lowercase.
culture and conventions are changing at a speed that's dizzying for us, and so we watch as grammar grows uncool. "girlboss" evolves from a feminist cry to a term of mockery. j.k. rowling goes from childhood hero to social media pariah. it's hard not to feel swept up in the tides of time, left behind and lost at sea, as the world we thought we knew rearranges itself every day.
we explore how, in the midst of all this displacement, we can perhaps find our place.
Experience the ruthless passage of time as experimental graphic novel Here lets you observe the events that take place in a single room, one era after another.
Or dive into something a little more specific with The Atmospherians—a wicked satire of the cancel culture that divides generations today—or The World in a Selfie, a thoroughly researched look at the ways tourism has morphed in tandem with a changing world.
If it's just a bit of quiet introspection you want, ruminate upon a planet that's been destroyed in Nonstop, where everyone has escaped to the moon except for one man, with just his sentient shadow for company. Literally left behind.
About the illustration
Mood board for this concept, drawing inspiration from TV series WandaVision and relics of days past such as the Yellow Pages and newspaper print.
"Whenever I think I’m ten steps ahead, I’ll immediately realise I’m actually so far behind. It is scary knowing how quickly things change and how irrelevant that can make you feel. In the blink of an eye, what you learnt in school may no longer be relevant the minute you step into the industry."
When we got the memo (haha) about this theme, Alex and I got into quite a pickle almost immediately—we had drastically different views towards this topic!
I instantly resonated with the struggle of playing catch up with the world, while Alex has always been pretty self-assured about his own pace. In a strange but beautiful way, working together forced us to interrogate and confront our differing attitudes towards the changing world, empathise with the other, and gradually arrive at a common ground on how to best navigate this together.
Interrogating this theme with Alex got me wondering if there was a better way to manage the reality of constant change and information fatigue. Maybe not everything that is fast is good. Most good stuff are the slow things that stand the test of time anyway
We akin the visual to good ol’ yellow memo as an attempt to stop you in time—dressing it with almost tactile-like elements like scanned graphics, handset type, cheap toner ink backdropped against quick highlighted doodles.
With this memo delivered to your virtual doorstep, we invite you to reflect on this theme, recognise your pace and celebrate it in solidarity (even if it is radically dissimilar to those around you).
"Strangely, I have never felt left behind. Although I recognise things around accelerating ahead, leaving me late to the game – that’s okay. I was really at peace with my own pace of change"
When Grab and Uber were synonymous with everyone’s smartphones, I still stubbornly refused to download these apps and took preference to flagging a cab, even if that meant a longer wait.
But admittedly, investigating this theme with Judea did make me realise the importance of keeping up, especially when it starts affecting others around me, like when I'm not able to book a Grab for my parents remotely. Perhaps, the true value here is to not stay afloat on a driftwood, nor take a speedboat to every destination, but perhaps it is to be like a surfer; recognising the waves and identifying the ones worth riding.
About the artists
Alex and Judea are graphic hobbyists who enjoy experimenting with type and found objects. As a duo, their work often investigates how graphic design can engage with culture and facilitate collective imagination. This often translates across various contexts and formats like exhibition identities, digital experiences, and printed matter. They also spend a lot of time looking at $2 Daiso kitchenware, geocaching and playing with food.
You can check out more of Alex's work and Judea's.