Dear Bonnie


Bonnie Siegler
Rapid Fire
Our own Bonnie Siegler takes your questions



Bonnie Siegler
Frightened in Fort Lauderdale
The benefits of being scared



Bonnie Siegler
Unsure in Utica
Measuring up — or not


Bonnie Siegler
Naive in Norwalk
Dear Bonnie doles out some homework


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie
Baffled in Buffalo



Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Fretting in Fredericksburg
This week Dear Bonnie gives an unhappy designer advice on contracts, fees, and client management.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Lost in London
Are you as good as you think you are? Is your job?


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Lost in Louisville
This week, Dear Bonnie highlights the importance of good communication ... and manners.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Helpless in Hermosa Beach
This week Dear Bonnie turns the answering over to contest winner Erica Heinz, who encourages readers to “work collaboratively, without the need for recognition.”


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Deals in Dillon + A Giveaway
This week Dear Bonnie reminds us that design should never be sold by the pound.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Nervous in Nantucket
This week Dear Bonnie encourages a new-ish employee to speak up!


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Dissed in Denver
This week Dear Bonnie reminds a 19 year old intern what it means to be a 19 year old intern.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Partnering in Peoria
What questions do you ask to start a business partnership off right? Dear Bonnie has a few. 


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Wondering in Westport
This week Dear Bonnie advises a do-everything-wonder-kid about his portfolio.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Aggrieved in Atlanta + Bumming in Brooklyn
Advice for designers who receive unsolicited opinions from friends and those whose clients have bad taste.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Lost on Long Island + Stuck in Schenectady
This week Dear Bonnie tackles what to do when your client stops returning your calls, and how to get your brain moving.



Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Cringing in Charleston
This week Dear Bonnie gets to the heart of the conundrum that is graphic design. Designers represent the needs of both art and commerce, which means they serve many masters.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Reeling in Rotterdam + Apprehensive in Austin
This week Dear Bonnie tackles clients who don't pay and clients who think you've stolen a logo. Excellent advice from Bonnie Siegler.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Taunted in Tehran
This week Dear Bonnie answer Taunted in Tehran about proper credits when you've collaborated with a group, but one person runs off with the idea.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Mixed up in Martinsville
This week Dear Bonnie answers Mixed up in Martinsville about how to deal with clients without burning bridges. The key: written agreements.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Frustrated in Florida
This week's advice from Dear Bonnie focuses on how to handle on those people who think graphic design is as easy as a 1-2-3 click.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Confused in Connecticut
This week's advice from Dear Bonnie deals with aloof clients: Are they too cool or embarrassedly avoiding your questions because they just don't know the answers?


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Women of Washington + Young in Youngstown
This week's advice from Dear Bonnie focuses on women: are there enough women represented on jury panels, in board rooms, anywhere; and is there any specific advice for young female designers?


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Cheated in Chicago
This week Dear Bonnie — our truth-telling advice column from Bonnie Siegler — advises independent artist "Cheated in Chicago" on the best course of action when her work is being used by a large brand without her permission.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Trapped In Toledo + Desperately Seeking Designers
This week Dear Bonnie — our truth-telling advice column from Bonnie Siegler — advises Trapped In Toledo on how to win over his client's communications officer and Desperately Seeking Designers on finding talented, deserving young hires.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Tips for Toyland
This week Dear Bonnie — our truth-telling advice column from Bonnie Siegler — takes a lok at the pitfalls of casual letter writing.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Bullied in Brighton
This week Dear Bonnie tackles bullying at the office.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Interested in India + Window Dressing in Wisconsin
This week Dear Bonnie tackles online vs. offline design studios, client retention and the future of retail window dressing.


Bonnie Siegler
Dear Bonnie: Troubled in Techworld + Befuddled in Buffalo
Our first Dear Bonnie — a new truth-telling advice column from Bonnie Siegler.



Observed | September 10

The blobification of the American restaurant. (via James I. Bowie) [BV]


Observed | September 04

Beginning with the Dada and Surrealist movements, Paris nurtured a tradition of artists, including Ernst, Tanguy, Arp, and Léger, illustrating imaginative and important books. Designers and Books explores Paris and the Artist’s Book in the 1920s and ’30s. [BV]

What‘s the point of album covers in the post-album era? Jon Caramanica and Teddy Blanks discuss. [MB]


Observed | September 03

The history of the Roman Empire, which spans hundreds of years and multiple continents, is chronicled in statues and monuments its citizens left behind. Artsy has a list of seven ancient Roman sculptures you need to know. [BV]

Over the summer, Hyperallergic interviewed dozens of art handlers about the variable conditions of their workplaces. This week, their stories of accident and injury come to light. [BV]


Observed | September 02

KCET is back with a new season of Masters of Modern Design. Season 10 kicks off with the influence of Japanese American artists and designers—Ruth Asawa, George Nakashima, Isamu Noguchi, S. Neil Fujita and Gyo Obata—in postwar American art and design. (h/t Steven Heller) [LY]


Observed | August 30

We use hurricane forecast graphics to warn people. Why do we misinterpret them so often? A marvelous explanation of misreading hurricane graphics. [BV]


Observed | August 29

When your brain won’t let you recognize people, how do you navigate the world? [BV]

Pedro Bell, the artist who created Funkadelic’s cosmic album covers, died Tuesday at 69. [BV]


Observed | August 26

On a dry lakebed in Nevada, a group of friends build the first scale model of the solar system with complete planetary orbits: a true illustration of our place in the universe. [BV]

Sonic branding has appliances and devices singing new tunes. (via James I. Bowie) [BV]


Observed | August 23

Don‘t miss the next MITX InsideDesign event featuring Google Nest‘s Director of Design, Kate Freebairn. The event is on September 25, 8-9:30AM at Mad*Pow‘s Boston office. Get the MITX member rate on tickets using code OBSERVER. Register now [BV]


Observed | August 22

Ikea has swapped its brand typeface to Noto, a collaborative type family from Monotype and Google, after a decade of using Verdana across its visual identity. [BV]

“I’ve always had a studio in my house. I raised both of my children in my studio. I see my studio as a daily practice the way some people see yoga: it’s a sanctuary.” Jessica Helfand talks to Madame Architect. [BV]


Observed | August 19

Visual identity for Re:publica rebels against digital culture with reams of text. Fertig Design has created a visual identity for the Re:publica conference that uses lengthy passages of text and typography instead of conventional graphics to pay “homage to the written word”. [LY]

This is the world’s worst UI—and it speaks volumes about design today. The Antwerp design agency Bagaar built an impossible form for you to fill out—and it puts all your design assumptions to the test. [LY]


Observed | August 15

Roger Ballen revisits his never-before-published Woodstock photos. The internationally renowned artist was just 19 when he took his trusty Nikon to the festival. Only one was ever published—till now. [LY]

Google has a secret design library. The company’s industrial design team shares a handful of titles from its studio library, which is curated by team members. Here are 35 of its best books. [LY]

Morphosis is designing LA’s Korean American National Museum. The museum will incorporate elements of traditional Korean houses and lots of greenery. [LY]


Observed | August 14

Be water’ The Hong Kong protest mantra encourages fluidity and adaptability to any situation influences how art is designed and distributed. [LY]

London design agency OMSE has created an augmented reality campaign for cultural venue Printworks London that transforms static typography into immersive three-dimensional animations. [LY]


Observed | August 12

Why are all recreational vehicles covered in swirls and swooshes? (via James I. Bowie) [LY]


Observed | August 08

New York knows its arts organizations have a diversity problem. The city asked cultural institutions, including museums and performing arts centers, to draw up plans to make their staff and board members more diverse. [LY]

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation aims to make circular design “the new normal” by persuading 20 million designers to help transform the global economy from a linear to a circular model. [LY]


Observed | August 07

Domino’s Pizza is locked in a legal battle over the future of web design. The pizza company has petitioned the Supreme Court to hear a three-year-old case that deals with whether Domino’s is legally required to make its websites and apps accessible to all users. [LY]


Observed | August 06

Zeyu Cai and Sibei Li win The Peoples Notre-Dame Design Competition. The competition aimed to create a new vision for the future of the iconic cathedral after the Notre Dame fire in April this year. Called Paris Heartbeat, the winning design creates a literal heartbeat for the city. [LY]

Imran Chaudhri, one of six designers who created the interface of the very first iPhone, left Apple to start his own company Humane. He now wants to use A.I., machine learning, and computer vision technology to improve our relationships with our devices. [LY]


Observed | August 05

To mark 100 years since women were given the right to vote in the United States, Baltimore Museum of Art has announced its whole year of exhibitions will be dedicated to artists who identify as female. [BV]

The Aspen Institute center devoted to Bauhaus artist Herbert Bayer will open in 2022 and will have galleries and educational programs and study Bayer’s work. [BV]

“We may not have designed the systems or the community, but I do believe we have a responsibility to redesign them.” — Hugh Webber on talking to design communities all over the country. [BV]



Jobs | September 15