E VE RYDAY MAGAZINE
â„–1 January 2010
A magazine about graphic design & more
/Uglylogo /Your Friends /Ian Albinson /plus Graffiti Polaroids, Everyday Fashion & more
NOK: 79,- EUR: 8,- USD: 11,-
7 044610 021829
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
elcome to the fi rst edition of There are many magazines about graphic design, and they all mostly focus on the works done by graphic designers. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but as of 2010 the internet is overflowing with inspirational blogs showing all kinds of work from all over the world. We feel that the magazine, an analogue format in a digital world, should function more as a calmer storyteller, rather than doing on paper what the internet already does for free without consuming our planets valuable forests. In EVERYDAY MAGAZINE we put the people EVERYDAY MAGAZINE.
Mikael S. FlĂ¸ysand Editor in chief
before the work, not the work before the people. In fact, we don't show you any works at all. Instead, we talk to people we fi nd interesting within the field of graphic design, photography and art and try to show you their story, how they work and live. Why and how is to us more important than what. In this issue you can read about a young and upcoming illustrator, two young graphic designers and a web designer moonlighting as a carpenter as well as an industrial designer. If we've succeded, your grandchildren can pick up this magazine from a box in the future, and still fi nd the stories interesting to read.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
CON T R I BU TOR S
CHATTER home of 08 The Eli Rose and Gui, Tokyo.
E V E RY DAY M AGA Z I N E I S SU E 01, JA N UA RY 2 010
Mikael Fløysand – Editor in chief, art director, photographer & writer
Founder & Editor: Mikael S. Fløysand Art Director: Mikael S. Fløysand
Web: www.everydaymag.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Henrik Wold Kraglund Writer
Adress: Kirkeveien 155 0451 OSL O Norway Typography: Univers LT Std, Plantin Std & Akkurat Light Pro Paper: Scandia Yellow 150g
Ian Albinson Photographer.
Sindre Rosness Photographer & model
Cover photo: Mikael S. Fløysand
Inside the Studio of Your Friends.
Graffiti polaroids by Aroe.
TALKS screen 18 Silk printing with Uglylogo.
A talk with Your Friends design agency.
Ian Albinson & his ecoambitions.
PICTURES Scary 52 Monsters & Super Creeps.
Working Hard or Hardly Working?
ELI & GUI
PHOTOGR A PH ER The Selby
Eli Rose is a model & DJ living with her boyfriend Gui who is a graphic designer. They live in an apartment in Tokyo with their cat.
1 Eli & Gui love each other, but make sure to save some love for their little cat so it won't get jelous.
Even dj's/models and designers have to do the dishes manually. Their kitchen is nice, but lo-fi.
Eli loves to buy anything antique. Clothes, books, shoes and obviously clockwork as well.
4 Gui on the other hand, is more interested in stuff like horse masks. It's good for scaring people.
5 Not very surprisingly, most of the shoes belong to Eli.
6 At the far end of the appartment next to the bedroom, they have a large walk-in closet.
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–YOUR FRIENDS PHOTOGR A PH ER Mikael S. Fløysand
Your Friends consists of Carl Gürgens and Henrik Fjeldberg, a two man graphic design studio located in Fredensborgveien 6, Oslo, Norway. They recently moved into their new studio, and they're very pleased with their new location. The studio consists of a large room with a bookshelf along the wall (with quite an expanding library), two desks with macbook pros and external monitors, and a table with chairs for coffee breaks and client meetings. They also have a nice little kitchen, but they didn't want it to be photographed as they claimed it wasn't finished. Read more about Carl & Henrik in the inteview on page 25.
1 Right next to the entry to the studio, Carl and Henrik have a spot for their coats and jackets. Their very own tote bag also rests here.
2 Like any good graphic design studio, Your Friends are young at heart. The office space sports different toy objects scattered around.
3 Ideas come and go, and if all you have avilable for writing it down is a napkin, then a napkin it is.
4 The studio has a large bookshelf at one end, with an expanding library of graphic design related books as well as magazines and paperwork.
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W R I T ER Aroe PHOTOGR A PH ER Aroe
Like Lipstick Traces Like Lipstick Traces is a book published by Dokument Forlag. It contains polaroids from 9 profilic graffiti writers collecte over three years. The writers were not given any guidelines for how the pictures should be taken, and the result is a collection of pictures that represents their personal perspectives.
he question of whether you can make it into history is a very hard question indeed, because it leads to a situation where you have two ways to answer and one of them can make you look very arrogant. However, with regard to my personal life, it's impossible for me not to make it into my family's history. I'm the father of four children, I have a brother and a sister, and a long-term girlfriend who I'm sure one day will be my wife. So in that respect I will always be remembered. In terms of graffiti, it's a combination of luck, will, ability, passion and the ability to capture other writer's or the public's attention, and then holding it without disappointing them whilst keeping yourself in the spotlight long enough to make a mark. Whether or not I have achieved this is not something I would choose to answer. There are shortcuts to infamy which a lot of people take, but
bish that earnt me no respect from other writers, or if I'm honest, even myself. I took som time away from graffiti in the late nineties and thought a lot about what writing meant to me, and what really controlled it and how the fame game worked. As soon as it becomes clear that if you are honest and accept that it's nothing more than painting to collect props, the easier your goal is to achieve. This moment of understanding opened every door that had previously existed and the game began. We formed a notorious crew that redressed the who's who list in our country in a dramatic fashion that remains to this day. Every week trying to paint something new, or twist something old and give it a new life, pushing better concepts, bigger productions, better colours and refi ning techniques in the quest for that impossible, perfect piece.
I FOUND THE POLAROID QUITE DIFFICULT TO USE, AND ENDED UP WASTING A LOT OF FILM ON BLURRY SHOTS they end up being remembered in a negative way rather than being respected by their peers, which by all accounts tend to last longer. The graffiti scene in the U.K, London particularly, thrives on toys crossing and backgrounding more capable writers' pieces in order to gain notoriety which has led to a situation not dissimilar to the lunatics taking over the asylum. In reality, I can see no end to this until graffiti, other than tagging, in our capital is completely dead. Which is, in short, a tragedy: a short-term gain is always a long-term loss.
Secret stories. The drive or force for me personally is the pursuit of doing the best piece that I can, which I have never managed to do. I spent many wasted years in graffiti not focusing on what I wanted, or what I thought I wanted. Years of ugly tags, unfi nished pieces and tons of lame rub-
Instant photography I found the polaroid quite difficult to use and ended up wasting a lot of fi lm with pictures that were too blurry, totally out of focus, too dark or bleached out completely. However, some pictures were really nice and certainly captured things in a way that a regular camera could not. It was also quite funny, I would often take it out with me in my bag and then forget that I had it with me and miss perfect opportunities for killer pictures. Sometimes I would be really busy and not bring the camera out with me for months at a time. During the project I broke the original camera and I had to replace it with one that was a bit different and that I found easier to use. That said, I have not taken a single Polaroid photo since the project fi nished and possibly never will again.
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1 Top left: Brighton. England, 11.2006 Top right: Haywards heath. 01.2007 Bottom left: Terror fabulous. Brigthton, England Bottom right: Brighton. England. 08.2006
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2 Top left: Ljubljana, Slovenia. 01.01.2006 Botttom left: Italy. 30.12 2005 Top right: Brighton, England. 09.2006 Bottom right: Record gems. 08.2005
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1 Frode found his old t-shirt in the closet at the studio, and decided to wear it so he wouldn't mess up the one he was originally wearing. Silk screen printing is messy stuff.
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W R I T ER Mikael S. Fløysand PHOTOGR A PH ER Mikael S. Fløysand
As we were waiting for the green light, Frode got worried that I might get hit by the passing bus while taking this picture. Luckily, I survived.
Frode enjoying his hamburger, he usually eats at the same hamburger joint everytime he's printing, as it's very close to the studio.
Frode is concentated while applying the black paint that is going to become the second layer for his thank you cards.
Being a graphic designer, illustrator, silk screen enthusiast and father, Frode Skaren shows us his silk screen routines and talks about his life as a young designer/illustrator.
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glylogo, or Frode Skaren is an illustrator/graphic designer from Kvinesdal, Norway. We meet him at the paper department at Norway Designs in Oslo, where he is about to purchase paper for his new silkscreening project. We enter the store wondering what he might look like, and spot a guy who fits the the image in our heads about a young aspiring artist. After he closes his paper deal he asks us if we've eaten lunch, we say no and he then proceeds to ask us if we eat junk food. Ten minutes later we're at the burger shop close to the silkscreen studio he uses. I always eat lunch here when I'm printing, he says. I know it's not healthy but it's so close to the studio. He makes fun of me as I spend a lot of time framing a picture of him eating the hamburger. My brother is a photographer, he's also just like that, he says. He'll wait forever before pressing the button, waiting for people to forget they're being photographed and act natural. After fi nishing our food, we walk the short road up to the silkscreen studio. Frode calls the overseer, who he mentions is a bit strict about letting strangers
into the studio. Luckily, he agrees to let us join Frode into the silkscreen studio. We enter the studio, which looks like expected, not too messy, but not too organized either. Paint and different objects related to silkscreen printing are scattered around. Frode points at one of the dressers labeled "the fittest" and pulls out different sketches and silkscreen originals. He shows some skethces that never got printed, and the original of him and Mads Omlands Big Venn print. He carefully explains the process of printing the different layers on top of each other. When I work together with Mads, we usually just draw together, building on what the other person does. Though it's usually I who arrange the layers and colors for the silk screen process, as I have a better understanding of what needs to go where for it to come out right.
got pregnant, so I kinda had to leave Oslo thing many of the students at Visual and get back home. Communication do a lot. It's something you have to to on your I knew at the beginning of the education that I wanted to try silk screen own in addition to the other school asprinting, so I signed up on one of the signments, and it takes a lot of time. courses as soon as I could. I remember I You have to work a lot if you want to got there late, which wasn't very popular get good at it, and you have to sacrifice with the teacher. I remeber the fi rst thing other things. For instance, one of the last I screen printed was a Kanye West song I big parties that were held at the school, was into at the moment. It said the good everyone was there but us. While they life with an illustration (laughs). But I re- were drinking and having fun with the Education Frode just fi nished his bachelor in Visual ally enjoyed it, and started doing it more others students, we were here in the stuCommunication at the Oslo National and more. dio, doing silk screen printing. So doesn't Academy of arts before summer 2009, We ask him about more about the come for free at all. To me it's all worth and says he really enjoyed his school days. education, if silk screen printing is com- it though. I would like to fi nish my masters degree monly practised among the students, and Frode continues to show us the protoo, but then my wife back back home are kinda surprised that it is not some- cess of printing, today he's just gonna
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WHILE THEY WERE DRINKING AND HAVING FUN WITH THE OTHERS STUDENTS, WE WERE HERE IN THE STUDIO, DOING SILK SCREEN PRINTING.
WE ALWAYS DO SOMETHING WRONG AT THE SILK SCREEN STUDIO. WE'LL FORGET TO CAP A BOTTLE, SPILL SOME PAINT OR MAYBE EVEN RIP A FRAME. ONE TIME THOUGH, WE DID EVERYTHING BY THE BOOK. AFTER THAT WE GOT OUR OWN KEYS TO THE STUDIO.
Frode gets a call while he's busy printing, and has to tell the person on the other end to call back later.
6 Carefully carrying the frame from one room to another, making sure it doesn't rip. The fragile frames do that quite easily.
7 The floor has seen many years of young students come and go, and not every drop of paint is used for printing. Some ends up on the floor.
8 Bendik got to be Frodes assistant during the printing process, he even got to do a print all by himself.
print a small card that says thank you in black and purple letters. I got the idea a while ago, when a girl from England commented on something I posted on my blog, telling me it was nice or something. So I thought, if a girl from another country takes the trouble to comment on something I made, why not send them a proper reply. So I got the idea to make small cards and mail it to people, not just give them a reply on the internet. It'll only cost me about 5 kroner (ca 1$), and imagine how much of a happy surprise it would be for them. The way I see it there are two ways of promoting yourself as a graphic designer, one is to go around to all the agencies telling them you are the best designer in the world, another is to just be patient and generally nice to people. And I choose that last approach.
way of making a great number of prints. Also, for me as a former student at the National Academy of Arts, I don't pay for anything but the paper, so it's a great way of cheap printing if you're up for it. Another student appears, he's going to print something as well. He shows us the cleaning room where they clean the frames. If you're not thorough when cleaning the frames after use, you'll make a ghost of your print on the frame. And then the next person who is going to print something completely different may get a ghost of your print. And that probably isn't going to be appreciated at all. He fi nishes washing of every remnant of paint on the frame, assuring that the next person who uses it won't get a surprise, and we rejoin Frode who's getting ready to do what at least he came here for, printing his cards. The fi rst sheets always get ruined no matter what he complains. You Printing Frode takes opens a bottle of black paint have to get into the fl ow and eventuand pours it over the silk screen frame. ally the press will tune in. Like now, the You have to do one layer for each color upper right print gets messy because he says, so it's kind of a time consum- of too much paint. I'm not sure why ing process. But when you've done ev- that's happening, but it doesn't matter erything right you have a very effective that much since I'm printing 4 cards
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Uglylogo/Frode Skaren Uglylogo is the name of illustrator Frode Skaren. According to him, he only uses the alias Uglylogo when he's acting as an illustrator. As a graphic designer, his name is still just Frode Skaren. He currently resides in Kvinesdal, Norway with his wife and baby daughter, where he's having his studio set up in the old barn they live in. He also occationally works together with Mats Omland under the name The Fittest. www.uglylogo.com www.uglylogo-the-blog.blogspot.com www.wearethefittest.blogspot.com
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9 All black is the color that covers the silk screen frame. Frode wears his protective clothing so he won't spoil his clothes.
10 Frode explains the process of printing in layers, placing the original of the layer he's going to print on top of the already printed matter.
11 The finished thank you cards, drying and waiting to be cut and hopefully mailed to friends and strangers.
12 We get shown the process of washing, which is quite a messy experience. But it's important to do it properly, frode stresses.
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on each paper, so I'll stil get 3 of them come out right. The overseer that we've been warned about enters the room, and turns out to be a nice guy after all. He attended the National Academy of Arts himself in his youth, and now both prints himself and function as an overseer for the schools silk screen studio. He explains that though not many of the students at Visual Communication use the studio, they really should because it teaches you the very basics of printing things that should be experienced with your own eyes and hands. Much like a photographer should experience the darkroom process, even in a digital age like ours. Frode asks him about his little problem about the ink bleeding, and he quikly solves it by adjusting something on the press. After he leaves us, Frode talks warmly about him: You can't learn stuff like that in a year. He's both been printing and working here for years, and knows this equipment in and out. I didn't have a clue about why the ink was bleeding in the corner, and he just came in and fi xed it like that. That's experience. We tell him that we were expecting someone much more strict after what he told us before, and he just laughs. He's strict all right. He'll fi nd something to yell at us about almost every time. We always do something wrong when we're in the studio. We'll forget to cap a bot-
tle, spill some paint or maybe even rip a frame. One time though, we did everything by the books. After that he was so pleased with us that he gave us our own keys to the studio so we could come and go as we please, laughs. Frode recruits Bendik as his personal assistant and entrusts him to place the fi nished paper prints to dry as they get
IT'S ALL ABOUT SELF PROMOTION. fi nished. We event get to try to print one ourselves, and it comes out nicely. The thank you postcards are fi nished, and Frode now has a nice number he can send out to fans and friends. It's all about self promotion he says, but not in an intruding way. I've had nice exposure on the internet, many blogs have picked up my works and featured them, in fact, most of the commisions I get arent't from Norway but from countries like England who've seen my work on the internet. It's all about selling yourself but without coming off like a total douche. And I think I've managed that, he fi nishes as we walk out of the studio and into the cold Norwegian night.
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YOUR FRIENDS In this room, the word cool does not mean anything at all.
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W R I T ER Henrik Wold Kraglund PHOTOGR A PH ER Mikael S. Fløysand
They've nearly been labeled fundamentalists. But Your Friends just doesn't belive in form over function. Rather, they think that people need to be educated on what graphic design is really about.
enrik Fjeldberg and Carl Gürgens met as they studied graphic design at MI in Oslo. After their studies at MI, they both got accepted at Central St. Martins in London, and it was here they started their cooperation on school assignments as well as freelance work. After one year at Central St. martins Carl moved back to Norway and started a bachelor in Visual Communication at The National Academy of Arts in Oslo, while Henrik stayed behind and completed his education in London. While Carl fi nished his fi nal year at The National Academy of Arts, including an internship at Node Berlin, Henrik worked at the design agency Uniform until they in June 2008 established Your Friends. How did your educations from The National Academy of Arts in Oslo and Central St. Martins, London contribute in shaping you as graphic designers? At Central St. Martins the most important thing is that you're allowed to interpret things in your own way. The education is quite free, and the school allows for the students to fi nd their own way of working.
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1 Your Friends is a small agency, but that doesn't mean their office is small. Henrik sits behind the computer, while Carl is on the phone.
2 Carl and Henrik in the other end of their office, meant for coffee breaks and client meetings. Henriks prefers wearing slippers at work.
3 Carl looking serious while being interviewed by our journalist. Unlike Henrik, Carl seems to prefer wearing his real shoes inside.
4 This desk belongs to Carl, and like many young graphic designers these days, he also seems to have a love for trendy bikes.
5 Your Friends were had just returned from a trip to Tokyo when we met them, and some of the material they printed there was on the floor.
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St. Martins favor concept and idea before form.
proach to Visual Communication, but we think it's important to show that graphic design is more than a surface. Good ideas live longer than fancy decorations. We do art direction, which, truth be told, is a pretty watered out term. To us it means to always be involved in every step in the process from the very early stages, and we're more than willing to partake in the editorial work. We're extremely focused on being there for the entire process, and we think this is something that makes the results better.
How was the first period after you started Your Friends? It's hard to point at anything in particular, but we definitely learned extremely much in a very short time. The amount of work was surprisingly large from the very beginning, and the combination of design and administrative work has turned out to be nearly 50/50. Also, there's a lot of client meetings. When you start your own business, you have to cherish business just as much How do you start a creative process? It has some connections to our name, as design. We've been very lucky with our customers. One job has led to the next, Your Friends. We work together with the usually bigger and more comprehensive. client, and we ask the right questions. We're also critical about what questions What kind of approach do you have when it the client is asking. comes to Visual Communication? – A project always starts with thorough We're especially interested in printed research, both on verbal and visual refmatter, and the little web design we do erences. Vi also do thorough research are often related to print based jobs. Your on the concept, and reflect over nearly Friends focus on communicating in sur- everything there is to reflect on. Vi try prising ways. to find a way that isn't there in the first To surprise the client, to do something place. the client didn't think was possible. We've been called fundamentalists in our ap- Do you work in a special way, any routines?
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Every process starts intuitive, but you notice as you fi nish school, that the need have to set certain boundaries and put to learn is still there. And that is a need the ideas into a system before you do that should always be present. anything visual. It's about what kind of And ongoing dialogue with the clifeeling you get about the project. We wait ent is also important. If you don't meet a rather long time before we do anything any resistance, you haven't challenged connected to form, and we want to have enough. our clients with us on our thoughts before we present anything visual. Often What are your sources of inspiration? Any we have to school the clients, make them role models in visual communication, that conscious about what they've asked us to has an had an impact on what you do today? do for them. Not only for ourselves, but The study culture that has been going people need to be taught what design ac- on outside of Norway. The world of detually is. Many clients don't understand sign that lies outside the largest agencies. what Your Friends actually are able to Countries like France, Germany, The offer. Netherlands, Switzerland and England, have an entire different approach to Do you have a special kind of clients? graphic design. They're dedicated people We've worked a lot with customers with an ownership to what they do, and from the cultural spectrum, which again that's inspiring.
OFTEN WE HAVE TO SCHOOL OUR CLIENTS, MAKE THEM CONSCIOUS ABOUT WHAT THEY'VE ASKED US TO DO FOR THEM. has developed to larger culture projects that are more commercial. It has been a steep climb, but not in any conscious way. It became so, more or less randomly. We were very lucky with our fi rst clients, like The National Academy of Arts, and then it just went onward from there.
Henrik mentions Alan Fletcher as one of his main inspirational sources, while Carl mentions Experimental Jetset, not necessarily because of the visuals, but because of their simple communication. Direct communication is extremely valuable. That is something that norwegians aren't very good at interpreting. As long as things look good, that's enough. "Kult" (cool) is the most overused word in Norway. In this office, that word doesn't exist. We want to show what design can be. We work big, with small things.
Are you so privileged that you are able to reject clients? We're not in a situation where we can pick and choose at all, but there has of course been instances where we've said no. We say no to projects we don't see any potential in. We also don't like it if Are there any side projects alongside Your we're brought in at the end of the pro- Friends that you work on? cess, like when someone has a concept I'm working on a font for Gestalten. and everything ready and think "now we I have the rights, while Gestalten is the just need to slap some design on it and distributor, says Carl. it's ready to go". We're typography nerds, and we We don't want to do just fi nishing. would like to do more fonts. It's important to work on private projects, and we Do you have any dream clients? have many thoughts and plans, but little Oh, it's that question again. We always time. We get our way with many of our struggle with that. (laughs) I can't name ideas while working with Your Friends any names, but we want to work with though, that helps a little. clients who understand design. We just want to do really good jobs, expand our Any visions for the future? spectrum, open peoples eyes to what we I would like to be able to tell a random think is good design. It's also very inspir- person that I'm a graphic designer, and ing to work with things you don't know that person would know what I am doanything about, with a client relationship ing. But that may be an impossible goal, based on mutual respect for each others Henrik fi nishes. field of expertise. It's important that we learn something from the projects. That's something you Visit www.yourfriends.no to view works.
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BUILDING AN ECO-FRIENDLY HOUSE IN VERMONT Taking responsibility, and getting dads help in doing so.
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W R I T ER Christie Matheson PHOTOGR A PH ER Ian Albinson
Ian Albinson and his girlfriend Raedia decided to build their own house. Not just any house, their dream house is both practical and striving for a 5 Star Plus Energy rating. And they did it all themselves, with a lot of help from contractors and a helpful dad.
aedia and Ian Albinson are veered north. "We thought we could afused to thinking outside the box. So when ford to buy land and build the house we the artistic couple - she's an animator, he's wanted in Vermont," says Ian, 33. They a designer and media producer - started found a 15,682-square-foot parcel near house hunting, it's not surprising that the town center in Bristol - and arranged their search took an unconventional turn. telecommuting gigs with their companies. They yearned for community, proximity to farmer's markets, and a space Green money uniquely suited to their tastes. They Then they had to fi nd a mortgage. A also wanted to live green. To them, this green house costs more to build (even meant more than adding eco-friendly- though, when fi nished, it's often worth looking fi nishes. It meant fi nding - or more) than a non-green house of the building - a house with passive heating same size and in the same location. But and cooling capabilities and energy-effi- the loan officers whom the Albinsons cient insulation and using Energy Star- spoke to couldn't take this into account rated appliances and lighting. It meant when determining an appropriate loan avoiding fossil fuels. And it meant using size; there weren't any other local houses as many green building materials as pos- like it on the market with which they sible, and choosing a spot located within could compare. "The people doing the walking distance, not driving distance, appraisal had no clue what we were tryof daily activities. ing to do," Ian says. "They just didn't After a fruitless search in the Boston have the knowledge about sustainable area, where their jobs are based, they design and building to understand its
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1 Ians dad working on the exterior of the house.
2 Ian may own the house, but his dad is helping him finish it. When Ian is too tired to work, his dad doesn't hesitate to shake him up.
3 The original drawing plans for the house. His dad drew those as well.
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The small model of the house Ian and Rae dreamt up, ready to be set into life in full scale.
Winter has come, and the exterior of the house is finished and bathing in the sunset of Vermont.
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value." But Ian and Raedia, 27, success- will pay for itself in 10 to 12 years. built-in unit behind that. Looked at cork, fully argued their case. "Ultimately, the One of the Albinsons' cost-cutting, loved it, but it's just too darn expensive. bank designed a new green building loan and ultra green, tricks: using castoffs All the marmoleum that we've used have program based on us," Ian adds trium- from other construction projects. "We been remnants, and run about $1.33 sq went to places that carry Marmoleum ft, which is incredibly cheap. Cork starts phantly. They broke ground in May 2007. "We and asked them for remnants," Ian says. around $4.50 studied shelter magazines and collected "You have to go to a lot of showrooms Not every material in the house is designs we liked," Raedia says. "Flooring, and look in the back." They used as completely green, nor is the home fully details, materials… there's so much to many reclaimed and salvaged materials carbon-neutral. "We still pull energy think about." Ian's dad, a master wood- as possible, such as a substantial set of from the electric grid," Ian says. Still, worker who lives in nearby New Haven, 500-year-old Douglas fi r support beams compared with a conventional home, Vermont, drew up the house plans. They and drawers and doors left over from a this is a seriously earth-friendly abode. positioned the house and the windows woodworking company's other projects. No one looking at it would ever know to maximize passive heating and cooling the Albinsons chose concrete made with and natural light. fl y ash (a greener alternative to standard Floorwork I'm surpised you desided not to roll with concrete) for the foundation and slab, or What have you been doing on your own wood (or even bamboo) for the main living that all the wood comes from carefully exactly? Are you supervising builders, or did area. What made you go with carpet? managed sources. you, say, pour the slab yourself, etc? We went back and forth between wood To off set the costs of their green Since we both work full-time, the and carpet, but the latter ended up being choices, they've tackled most of the inmain construction of the house, includ- much cheaper, quicker to install, quieter, terior work on their own, from painting ing concrete, framing, systems etc. were cleaner (in terms in capturing dust etc. with low-VOC paint to floor installations. done by a great group of contractors. instead of "dust bunnies" which you of- But it's been worth it. "It can be depressThe design, research and interior/exterior fi nishing (painting, cabinetry, landscaping etc.) is being done by us with a ton of help from my folks. We would have liked to have worked more on the construction, to keep costs down, but working and living 4 hours away in Boston didn't help. Sourcing cost-effective green materials proved the most challenging. While ecofriendly materials are more ten get with wood floors) and it's cozier. ing at times to live in an unfi nished We used Shaw brand, a very tight ber- house. It's tempting just to do things the widely available than ever, they found that many come with a big price tag. ber weave, which should last 10 years or conventional way," Ian says. "But you "Focusing on green materials that we more, and can be fully recycled by the always have to keep in mind that being could actually afford helped us narrow company. Carpet made from recycled green really is important." things down," Ian says. content was another option, but it tends to be much more plush, loose weave, Presumably you're steering clear of the which doesn't last as long. dreaded concrete? As for wood, Bamboo was out since 7 Would have liked to, but since the site it's very hard to know what the comis sloped and we wanted to cut into it panies are like that export from China to give us downstairs rooms, there was (human rights, sustainability etc.) and quite a bit. We tried to use as much fly local hardwoods (New England region ash as we could in the mix, but even that and Canada) were more expensive per needs to be transported from great dis- square foot. Install can also be expensive, tances. There are no simple "green" solu- or time consuming if you do it yourself. tions with concrete, but it's an extremely That's for pre-fi nished wood. versatile material that lasts for decades. Unfi nished can be cheaper, but then you're still nailing or gluing it down yourSalvaging self, renting the big ass sander, then fi nThey skipped the expensive Paperstone ishing and it's never going to be as good counters (made of recycled paper) as pre-fi nished's 10 coats and UV cure and instead chose more affordable treatment processes. Marmoleum (a green flooring and countertop material). They opted out of Are the bathroom ﬂoors marmoleum too? big-ticket items like an induction cook- Did you consider cork for anywhere as a top and photovoltaic solar panels but ﬂooring solution? splurged on a geothermal heating sysYup, both the master and utility room/ tem. "We had the option of going with guest bathroom have marmoleum as the an efficient propane-based furnace, but flooring as well as the vanity counter stuck with our no-fossil-fuel mandate," tops. We've also used it for the kitchen Ian says - plus, he estimates the system counters and will for the office desk and
THEY JUST DIDN'T HAVE THE KNOWLEDGE ABOUT SUSTAINABLE DESIGN AND BUILDING TO UNDERSTAND ITS VALUE.
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About the house design
The main goal is a super insulated house, that requires minimum energy to run. The overall design of the house and placement on the land takes into account passive heating and cooling, reducing the mechanical systems that we'll need over the changing seasons. Vermont can have extremely cold winters, as well hot and humid summers, so the systems used need to cover a large range of temperatures. One aspect that was very important to me was to see if we could reduce our fossil fuel use, meaning no natural gas (which is scarce in VT anyway), propane (widely used), or oil (also widely used). An all electric house however can skyrocket utility bills, depending on what you're running, so we decided to offset this with a geothermal heat pump system for our main heating/cooling and hot water heating. Regarding electricity, Vermont is lucky that a very high percentage of its power comes from either hydro or nuclear, two very clean sources (nuclear has larger implications of course), as well as cow power at a slightly extra cost, and so all electric seemed to make the most sense. As it stands now, a geothermal system will be combined with an HRV (Heat Recovery Ventilator) and hydronic heating/cooling furnace, similar to traditional forced air systems. An HRV however is a air circulation system that provides constant filtered fresh air from outside, while at the same time removing the stale air from inside. The recovery part is that it transfers the temperature of the inside air back to the new air coming in, keeping it warm in the winter and cool in the summer. What this type of system gives us is excellent indoor air quality year round, and the ability to heat or cool the air cleanly via its hybronic coil.
Visit www.vtecobuilder.com for more pictures and updates about the project.
6 Ians dad is a master woodworker, and building cabinets for the office space is just a walk in the park.
7 The exterior of the house, now with finished concrete steps.
8 Rae is working on the floor made of leftover pieces of marmoleum, it's quite like putting together a large puzzle.
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SC A RY MONST ER S & SU PE R CR E E PS Photographer: Sindre Rosness Models: Sindre Rosness, Mikael S. Fløysand, Jens Bjørklund, Mari Hagen Nilsen, Eirik stiansen & Kasper Amundsen Tuvnes Location: Party at Kirkeveien 155, Oslo, winter 2009
Jens is wearing a striped shirt from H&M, & black jeans from Nudie
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Mari is wearing a dress from Top Shop & a white cardigan from Gina Tricot. Mikael is wearing a grey shirt from H&M & black jeans from Nudie. Ingar is wearing a shirt from NY.
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Sindre is wearing a striped shirt from H&M, a black Cardigan from Selected Homme & grey jeans from Acne. Knife from Fiskars.
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WOR K I NG HARD OR H A R DLY WOR K I NG? Phographer: Mikael S. Fløysand Models: Sindre Rosness & Kasper Amundsen Tuvnes Location: Kitchen/Office/Livingroom Oslo, winter 2009
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Next issue: summer 2010
Published on Apr 17, 2011