(web)Site Analysis

Much of my job entails creating graphic images for both our clients and our own in-house marketing purposes. To this end I spend a fair amount of time surfing the web in search of inspiration and innovation, examining everything from content to form to color to sound. More often than not I stumble upon little nuggets of creativity that beg to be gossiped about at the water cooler that will be this post. While not always immediately related to architecture, these gems stand out for one reason or another under the greater theme of design. So take a second, take a peek, and enjoy.

week 1: Layer Tennis

Layers are something we as architects and designers deal with on a constant basis, whether in an overarching design concept (think building skin fascination), the management of AutoCAD drawings or the finishing touches to a 3D rendering (thank you Adobe Creative Suite). Speaking of Adobe Creative Suite, they have taken this concept of layers to an entirely new level with their organization of Layer Tennis—a weekly Friday afternoon competition between two designers. The concept is simple: using video, animation, sound, photos, type and more, the site documents the real-time back and forth swapping of a graphic file as each competitor adds to and embellishes the work. Each artist gets fifteen minutes to complete a “volley” and then their “shot” gets posted to the site. There are 10 rounds or “volleys” per match and throughout the competition a third person provides play-by-play commentary on the action and likewise documents the programs used to create the image itself (Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, etc.). Once a match is complete the season ticket holders (free registration) log in and vote on the winner. Thankfully, all of the previous matches that have been played on Layer Tennis have been archived and are there for your perusing. Enjoy!

- Todd Shafer | Designer