Urban Cube Calendar

The idea came up for the first time when we biked around looking for numbers for urbnCal 2012 in Helsinki, where many of the street numbers were placed on light cubes. One of the ideas with our wall calendar urbnCal was to make something physical in a digital world. In this calendar we are taking it one step further, the cubes are meant to be handled daily and turned to the current date. Another important part is that you can use it for many years, it’s a sustainable fellow.

12 street numbers screen printed by hand on quality cardboard from Norrmalms Kartongfabrik, glued together in the shape of cubes.
The calendar is inspired by Esa’s mother who every morning grabbed two small wooden cubes and turned to the date, then the weekday and sometimes the month. Our version of the calendar is reduced to just show the date to get a stronger and clearer expression.

 

 

 

 

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One month left…

Today it’s the first of December and the new year begins in a month. So it’s really time to say more about urbnCal 2012! We started with Stockholm 2010, then Copenhagen, and 2012 it is Helsinki!

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How long does it take to make the calendar?
The first part is ”collecting” all the numbers. We spend about a week biking around the city, one area at the time, shooting pictures. We take turns, one of us is playing with the kids and the other is taking photos.
During the evening when the kids are asleep we go through the days harvest and name the pictures by street address and file them in folders, one for each month.
The next step is to adjust the photographes and place them in Indesign, our lay out-program. We check so the pictures work well together and crop them. This is usually when we have to kill our darlings or at least crop our darlings.

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How did the idea come about?
We had the idea for a few years before we had the courage to try it in the summer/fall of 2009. We didn’t know if we could complete it or if it was too big a task and who would like to sell the calendar. One inspiration for the calendar was an earlier idea to make congratulation cards out of numbers plates. We have an interest for everyday details.

Why is it called urbnCal?
urbnCal stands for urban calendar. The idea from the beginning was to photograph many cities and compare the graphic impression of the numbers plates in different countries. We also needed a nice web address (url) because we wanted to publish the picture on the web, link to a map and get feed back etc. Maybe the calendar will get more of a digital life in the future?
There is no room for notes, how should I use the calendar?
The wall calendar is intended as a visual complement to a pocket diary or digital calendar. We see it more as a poster with a function. But there is some room if you really want to make notes, maybe with a golden pen.

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Tech spec:
• 12 sheets (jan-dec) + 1 sheet with a list of all street addresses.
• High quality uncoated FSC-certified paper in three shade of white. (Munken Rough,170 g/m2)
• Format: A3 (11,7×16,5 in) with a 20 mm (0,8 in) hole for hanging.
• 2 colors: black & white photographs + colored details
• Packing: paper bag with handprinted logo
• Edition: 500

You can find it att Etsy, supermarket, Signerat

and here you find more retailers

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Which city is next?
We haven’t decided on the next city yet, but we are thinking of a Scandinavian calendar, reuse some numbers and get some new in Oslo, maby Reykjavik as well. If you have any suggestions feel free to contact us!

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Typographic inspiration

At the Hietaniemi Graveyard in Helsinki. Sometimes you find inspiration at unexpected places. Here are some mobile camera photos taken while getting our son to sleep. And the last picture shows a hard-to-read hospital sign.

Helsinki photo shoot

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On our first trip to shoot urbnCal 2012 Helsinki we immediately got a feeling for Kallio, a part of Helsinki we were not so familiar with. We can’t help but love signs like this one. If you look close you will see the whole Tanttu family in this picture.

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jollygoodfellow in Helsinki

We just got home from a trip to Finland, the first stop was Helsinki, a really nice city.
We walked around in the design district and of course we noted some nice bicycles and numbersplates (and did some PR).  Maybe urbnCal 2012 Helsinki…

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