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The Matter Storm Design Newsletter
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Hi there,
Welcome to the first issue of the Matter Storm Design newsletter. I'm happy to have you here!
As we continue to roll out our name change to Matter Storm Design, I’ve been designing new business cards and will need to get them printed. This has got me thinking about paper. And there’s a lot to consider; color, thickness, texture, coating. But the paper composition itself is worth looking at too.
I aim to be as environmentally friendly as I can, both in my personal life and in my business. As I've been looking at paper options, I’ve been weighing up what will have the highest visual impact, but also the smallest environmental one. It feels clear to me that using completely virgin paper is a bit hypocritical in my case. On the one hand I'm planting trees to help offset my carbon footprint, but then also turning around and cutting down trees for my business cards. So in this case, a recycled paper seems like the best choice.
Here are a few of the terms that I came across and what they mean. The next time you’re getting something printed, picking up printer paper or looking at a product with info about its paper packaging, you’ll hopefully have a leg up with these different terms.
Virgin paper refers to wood fiber that's been harvested from new trees and has not been used before. Virgin paper isn’t always necessary, but there are some unique cases, like paper coffee cups, where the paper needs a higher virgin fiber composition. Since new wood has naturally "longer" fibers (it’s been recently harvested from a tree, so the fibers haven’t been cut and processed as many times compared to recycled fibers), it can make the paper products created from it stronger. You definitely don't want your coffee cup coming apart in your hand and spilling hot liquid everywhere!
Post-Consumer Waste (sometimes also called Post-Consumer Fiber or Post-Consumer Recycled) is taken from products that have already completed their "lifecycle" and have been disposed of. This is your newspaper, printer paper, packaging, old mail and boxes that are ready to start their lives as something new. Post-Consumer Waste can be recycled about 5-7 times, until the fibers are too weak for common paper products. But that's not the end as it can then be used as "pulp" and made into things like egg cartons.
Pre-Consumer Waste (sometimes also called Pre-Consumer Fiber or Pre-Consumer Recycled) is different than Post-Consumer Waste as it's the waste that's leftover from the processing of consumer goods, but isn’t a final consumer good in and of itself. For example, in a paper mill, when they trim the paper to the correct size, they're left with trimmings that aren't part of the final product. These trimmings are then commonly recycled to be used again before they even reach the consumer, hence the Pre-Consumer name.
Recycled is a bit of a catch-all phrase, as it can refer to both Pre- and Post-Consumer Waste fibers.
In the works
I'm always working on a side project of some kind. Recently I've been creating a curated collection of all the unique and helpful online tools that I've found over the years. The goal was to make an easy to access database that had everything in one place.
If you've ever been looking for a new stock photography site, a reference to help you draw figures in different poses, a tool to quickly compress your images for the web or a pattern generator, you're in luck. I'll be publicly launching this collection of tools in the next couple of months, so keep an eye out for that announcement!
I’m so excited for two of my artist clients who have work being shown at the tANJA gRUNERT in Hudson, NY. Dan Devine is part of The Divine Sculpture exhibit and Lawre Stone is part of the Drawing Exhibition, both of which run through September 4th. Congrats!
Clear your cache?
You’ve probably heard the word “cache” or “caching” thrown around in relation to the web. If you don’t know what it means, you’re not alone. Most of the time you don’t even know it’s there doing its job. But cachings biggest strength can also be it’s largest pitfall. Here’s a funny, simple and quick explanation of what caching is and what it means to “clear your cache”. Curious? It’s definitely worth a look: https://cachingexplained.com/.
Interesting things from my internet travels
  • A look back on how IBM revolutionized corporate America by embracing the power of design, and how they pioneered the concept that “good design is good business”.
  • Need a moment to escape? The Monterey Bay Aquarium’s live Jelly Cam is the perfect way to re-charge while watching a bunch of peaceful jellys go about their business.
  • Cookies are so good, except when they're not. A quick explanation of what cookies do and what Firefox (the independent browser by the not-for-profit Mozilla) has done to protect your privacy.
  • Healing Through Hope – A great 12 minute guided meditation from Rose Felix Cratsley and mindful.
  • An interesting article about recognizing and embracing when something (artwork, project, writing, anything really) is Good Enough™.
Lastly, remember to vote. In NY19 we have a Special Election and Primary Election. Election day is Tuesday, August 23rd, with early voting from August 13th - 21st. Find your polling place at Vote.org.
That’s it for this issue. We’ll be back next month with more from Matter Storm Design.
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Dylan James Goodman
Owner, Creative Director
When I’m not creating thoughtful design I can be found listening to silly podcasts, cooking for family, making things with my hands, maintaining an 1880’s home or talking to my plants
Matter Storm Design
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