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Winter Solstice Card 2011

Posted: December 20th, 2011 | Author: Todd | Filed under: artifacts, design, downloads | Tags: , , | 1 Comment »


We just got our fifth annual Winter Solstice cards back from the printer and are excited to sit down and write notes to family, friends and clients. Since we can’t send a card to every amazing person out there we are also happy to carry on the tradition of sharing the design here. Please feel free to download the print quality pdf (trims to 4.25×5.5 inches to fit an A2 envelope) for your personal use with our best wishes for a happy solstice and a terrific new year.

Here’s how we arrived at this year’s graphic: The total number of minutes of light or dark for each week in 2012 have been added together and turned into an equivalent line length. Months are colored (blues for night and warm tones for day) to evoke seasonal color shift and changes in the quality of the light. Each line is divided into segments with a full segment equal to 1000 minutes of light or dark. Note: All the times are relative to Minneapolis, MN. Because the moment of the solstice is at 11:30 p.m CST if you find yourself east of the central time zone Winter Solstice will actually arrive on Thursday the 22nd.


Happy Winter Solstice 2010

Posted: December 12th, 2010 | Author: Todd | Filed under: artifacts, design, downloads | Tags: , , | Comments Off


Our fourth annual Winter Solstice card is done just in time for the blizzard that hit the Midwest. We’re celebrating the longest night of the year because it means the days will once again start getting longer (we confess it’s the Summer Solstice we love best).

In this year’s design the arcs of color represent the amount of light and dark in hours and minutes as converted to degrees around a circle. Though the circles are nested, their thickness is adjusted so the surface area of each arc is also an accurate measure of hours of light and dark. Sunrise and sunset are indicated in their relative positions around the circles with midnight at top and noon at bottom. The moon will be full on the Winter Solstice ensuring that even the longest night will not be all together dark. All times are relative to Minneapolis which is at 44 degrees latitude and Central Time.

We had 75 printed, which obviously isn’t enough to send one to every single one of our millions of readers worldwide. So, we hope you’ll download the pdf version and think of us on December 21st while you’re enjoying a warm fire, warm food and warm company.

Check out the graphic design section of our portfolio site to see all four years in the series.


Happy Winter Solstice

Posted: December 16th, 2009 | Author: Todd | Filed under: artifacts, design, downloads, output | Tags: , , | 7 Comments »

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Winter Solstice has been celebrated by many cultures for many thousands of years. And why not – it’s a big deal. What better occasion to gather together and find comfort in our connections with friends and family than the longest night of the year? Modern life often finds us far from our relations which is why sending a card is such a nice tradition. The time it takes to create, write and subsequently read brings us closer to one another. Granted it’s not quite the same as an all night, star-gazing, bonfire amidst the megaliths but it’s a nice bit of ceremony none the less.

So, in an effort to celebrate connections with colleagues, friends and family I’ve created the third annual, limited edition, BrainstormOverload Winter Solstice Card. Since I can’t send one to everyone I’ve linked to a pdf version of the design here. It won’t have a personalized note that way but given how I’m inclined to go on perhaps that’s best.

In the design on the front of the card each season’s solstice (or equinox) is represented by two arcs. A gray one for night and a colored one for day – the length of each being determined by the number of hours of light or darkness translated into degrees of circumference around a circle where 360 degrees signifies 12 hours. Possibly more than you wanted to know but it underscores how everything in Nature is simultaneously beautiful and meaningful. I hope it will bring a little color and connection to your evening on December 21st and that 2010 is a beautiful and meaningful year.

Download printable pdf version