Birthdays for Saturday, Dec. 27

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to eight excellent visual journalists…


Tim Ball is visuals editor for the Bay Area News Group. A product of the City College of San Francisco, Tim has worked at a number of papers including the San Antonio Express-News, the San Jose Mercury News, the Wisconsin State Journal, the Indianapolis Star, the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel and the Huntsville (Ala.) Times. He joined the Washington Post in 2009 as a sports designer but left in 2012 to go freelance. He ran the Advance design hub in Birmingham, Ala., until the company got its new design director up to speed. He then helped coordinate and launch a company-wide redesign throughout Digital First Media. He moved back to the West Coast in April. Find his portfolio site here, his Flickr feed here and his Twitter feed here. Tim turns 35 today.


Scott Kaven is owner and creative director of Firetrucker Brewery, where one can find craft beer, art and live music in Ankeny, Iowa. A graduate of Grand View College in Des Moines, Scott spent several years as a graphic artist and 3D illustrator at the Des Moines Register. He spent nine years as art director of Applied Art & Technology in Des Moines before opening Firetrucker earlier this year. Find his Facebook mixed media portfolio page here and his YouTube video page here. Scott turns 41 today.


Jean-Franciois “Jeff” Mignon is CEO and co-founder of RevSquare and Mignon-Media — a digital strategy consultancy based in New York City — and the founder of, a news site for readers ages 6 to 12. A 1991 graduate of CFPJ, a journalism school in Paris, France, Jeff later taught at that same school. He has worked and consulted for a number of daily and weekly papers, magazines, web sites and corporations, He was co-CEO of Formules Edito-Presse, a French information design firm. Find his web site here and his Twitter feed here. Jeff turns 49 today.


Arrie Rossouw is CEO of Mobile Potential, a distributor of prepaid airtime with offices in Charlotte, N.C. and Cape Town, South Africa. Arrie works out of the latter. A 1978 graduate of Stellenbosch University, Arrie was publisher of News24, editor of Johannesburg’s Beeld and then Cape Town’s die Burger. He served as editorial director of Media24′s and MIH Internet Africa before setting out on his own in 2009 as an online and mobile media consultant and strategist. He began working with Mobile Potential in 2010 and assumed his current duties last year. Find Arrie’s Twitter feed here.


Nicole Chin Sasaki is art director of the Foursquare Church in Los Angeles. A 2008 graduate of Azusa Pacific University, Nicole served as design editor for the Clause, the school’s weekly newspaper and interned at ESPN the Magazine and the Orlando Sentinel. She also spent four years as designer and editor for College Fanz, working on basketball and football preview magazines. She began working for Foursquare Church in 2011. Find her portfolio site here and her Twitter feed here. Nicole turns 29 today.


Joshua Siegel is a features writer for the Eagle of Bryan, Texas. A product of the University of Houston, Josh worked as sports editor of the student paper there, the Daily Cougar, and served an internship at the Houston Chronicle. He spent time at Houston Community Newspapers, the Chronicle and the Galveston County Daily News before signing on with the Eagle in 2003.


Jince Thevarmadam is a senior graphic designer and illustrator for Ernst &  Young advertising agency, based in Cochin, India. A 2005 graduate of the RLV College of Music and Institute of Fine Arts in Thrippunithura, India, Jince spent a year as art director of Reality Minds and then five years as an artist for the Week news magazine before joining Ernst &  Young in 2012. Find samples of his work here and his Twitter feed here. Jince turns 34 today.


Martha Thierry is assistant graphics editor of the Detroit Free Press. She’s a 1981 graduate of Detroit’s College for Creative Studies. Martha turns 56 today.

Nicole, Joshua, Jince, Tim, Scott, Jeff, Martha and Arrie share a birthday with actors Gérard Xavier Marcel Depardieu, Masayori “Masi” Oka; Maryam d’Abo, John Amos Jr. and Maria Magdalene “Marlene” Dietrich; musician Hayley Nichole Williams (of Paramore); sports greats Gilles Simon (tennis), Colbert Michael “Cole” Hamels (baseball), Jamaal RaShaad Jones Charles, Carson Palmer, John Victor “Blood” McNally (all three football) and Bill Self (basketball coach); scientists Louis Pasteur and Johannes Kepler, Mexican leader Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de León; commentator Sarah Jane Vowell, Today show co-anchor Savannah Clark Guthrie and ABC commentator Mary Martha Corinne Morrison Claiborne Boggs (better known as Cokie Roberts).

In addition, today is Howdy Doody Day and Visit the Zoo Day. Seriously.

Have an fabulous birthday, folks! Best wishes!

A South African chain observes the 10th anniversary of the tsunami

Ten years ago today, a 9.3-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. The resulting tsunami grew to nearly 34 feet tall in places. Nearly a quarter-million people were killed in and around the Indian Ocean.

My friends at Graphics24 — the infographics arm of the Media24 chain based in Johannesburg, South Africa — put together this piece to commemorate the disaster.

Tsunami gray

Click that for a much larger look. Click here to see a version in Afrikaans.


The illustrator for that graphic was Hanlie Malan, who works out of the company’s Port Elizabeth office. I posted about her work from time to time during my consulting gigs at her company. Here’s an example of her graphic work.

Graphics editor Andre Gouws researched and wrote the piece. Here’s what I wrote about Andre when Media24 hired him to be graphics director back in 2010:

Andre is very sharp and very organized. He has a ton of experience as both and editor and a manager, having worked in Cape Town and then at the Gulf News in Dubai.


When I was here [in 2009], I helped write a job description and recommended criteria for a departmental leader. Seems to me they’ve chosen wisely.

Last month, I wrote about Andre and Hanlie’s collaboration on a piece about the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Find the Graphics24 online graphics archive here.

A tribute to Joe Cocker by the Times of Oman

You probably know that legendary singer Joe Cocker died Tuesday.

What you might not have seen: A Joe Cocker tribute page that ran Wednesday in the Times of Oman.

Design director Adonis Durado tells us:

I designed the Joe Cocker obit.

I knew from the very beginning that my headline will be taken from Cocker’s iconic songs. I was mulling over between Up Where We Belong or You Are So Beautiful. I thought that if I used the former, I am going to redact “we” and write “you” on top of it — “Up Where You Belong”.


But when I read in Wikipedia that the lyrics of You Are So Beautiful is actually a love song about God, I decided to work my concept around it. In my initial sketch I had Joe Cocker’s head replaced one of the letters in the title.


Then I pulled a little conceit to myself — an obstruction — not to use any mugshot of the legendary singer. So I ended up with the final design where I highlighted his five memorable songs.

Click this for a much larger look:


Adonis illustrated 45 rpm singles to use as devices to replace the O’s in his big text and with which to pull out factoids. Here are closer looks at them:






A 2001 graduate of the University of San Carlos in the Philippines, Adonis Durado worked as a designer, art director, and creative director for a number of magazines and advertising agencies before serving as the consultant for a major redesign of the Cebu Daily News in 2004 and 2005.

From there, he became design editor of a free weekly tabloid published by the Gulf News of Dubai and then news presentation director of Emirates Business 24-7. He spent two years as group creative director of Instore and Indesign magazines in Bangkok, Thailand, before moving to the Times of Oman — and its sister publication, Al Shabiba — in 2010.

Find Adonis’ Twitter feed here.

Previous posts featuring work by Adonis and his staff at the Times of Oman

  • Feb. 10, 2011: What the hell is the Times of Oman?
  • Sept. 2, 2011: Times of Oman observes Ramadan with a page a day… for 28 days
  • July 31, 2012: ‘The world would never forgive us if we don’t do this particular graphic’
  • Aug. 2, 2012: Yet another genius Olympics visualization by the Times of Oman
  • Aug. 15, 2012: Yet another bit of Olympics graphic genius from the Times of Oman
  • May 30, 2014: Now this is truly an alternative story form

I get by with a little help from my friends… and a photoillustration

Philip Maramba, managing editor of the Charleston (W.Va.) Daily Mail,  wrote to…

…pass along a copy of our front page from [Wednesday] I thought you might like.

We were doing a story on distracted walking, where people on smartphones in particular aren’t paying attention to what they’re doing.

The editorial staff was trying to think of ways of how to illustrate this, when a light bulb came on.

Their idea: To riff on the Beatles’ classic Abbey Road album cover from 1969:


Here’s what they came up with:


And here’s how they used it on the front of Wednesday’s paper:


Philip writes:

With a little more puzzling, we probably could have come up with a stronger hed, but I thought the centerpiece worked out OK.

Photography was by our Tom Hindman, with layout by the soon-to-be-departed Steven Gill.

And, in the end, the page you make is equal to the photoillustration you take.

Find the story here by Marcus Constantino.

Average daily circulation for the Daily Mail is 17,879.

Birthdays for Friday, Dec. 26

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to five wonderful visual journalists…


Jason Boyd is an associate editor for Sporting News in Charlotte, N.C. A product of East Carolina University, Jason worked as a sportswriter for the Washington (N.C.) Daily News, the (Greenville, N.C.) Daily Reflector and the Wilson (N.C.) Daily Times and sports editor of the Washington Daily News and the Rocky Mount (N.C.) Telegram before moving to the Ledger-Enquirer of Columbus, Ga., in 2006 as assistant sports editor. He moved to the Sporting News in 2008. Jason turns 44 today.


Scott Goldman is senior director of content strategy for Angie’s List in Indianapolis, Ind. A 1990 graduate of Syracuse University, Scott spent two years as the Sunday sports editor for the Post-Star of Glens Falls, N.Y., before moving to the Charlotte Observer in 1994. He moved to the Washington Post in 1999 and then to the Indianapolis Star in 2004 as assistant managing editor. He served as president of the Society for News Design in 2006. He moved to Advance Digital of New Jersey in 2012 as the chain’s director of content. He moved to Angie’s List in September. Find his Twitter feed here. Scott turns 46 today.


Kevin McGeever is senior editor editor of Visit Florida, the state’s official tourism marketing arm. A 1978 graduate of the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania, Kevin earned a master’s degree from Syracuse University in 1980. He spent eight-and-a-half years as an assistant sports editor for the St. Petersburg Times and a similar amount of time as a suburban news editor before becoming senior editor for online news in 2004. He joined Visit Florida in 2011. Find his Twitter feed here. Kevin turns 58 today.


Gursharanjit Singh works in the field of pharmaceutical technology in Bangalore, India. He also draws cartoons and writes Punjabi poetry. He’s a 2004 graduate of the Rajiv Ghandi University of Health Sciences. Find his web site here and his Twitter feed here. Gursharanjit turns 34 today.


George Treviranus is a user experience designer for of Madison, Wis. A 2014 graduate of Madison College of Wisconsin, George served as design director and then editor-in-chief of the student paper there, the Clarion. He’s also worked as a freelance designer for print, user experience and branding. Find his web site here and his Twitter feed here.

Gursharanjit, Jason, George, Scott and Kevin share a birthday with actors Beth Behrs and Christopher Catesby “Kit” Harington; musicians Lars Ulrich (of Metallica), Jared Joseph Leto (of 30 Seconds to Mars) and Harvey Phillip “Phil” Spector; comedian Irwin Alan Kniberg (better known as Alan King); puppeteer Caroll Spinney; sports greats Yohan Blake (track and field), Osborne Earl “Ozzie” Smith, Carlton Ernest Fisk, Carroll Christopher Chambliss (all three baseball), John Franklin “Frank” Broyles (football coach) and Jay Glazer (commentator); politicians Birch Evans “Evan” Bayh III and Albert Arnold “Al” Gore Sr.; Chinese leader Mao Tse-tung; mathematician Charles Babbage; author Henry Valentine Miller; TV hosts Stephen Valentine Patrick William “Steve” Allen and John Edward Walsh and radio host David Sedaris.

In addition to Boxing Day, today is National Candy Cane Day, National Whiners Day and National Thank-You Note Day. Seriously.

Have an excellent birthday, y’all! Best wishes!