This week I got to have an awesome chat with the man behind Recapturist and the best selling book 'Junk Type', Bill Rose. Bill has spent over a decade travelling around America capturing the lost roadside treasures of the USA. Neon signs, logo design, junk type, shop fronts and anything that catches his eye to preserve in a photograph. Check out Bill's site recapturist.com to see his collection and his map of treasure! This interview was an absolute joy!
Recapturist is Bill Rose. Bill Rose documents the aesthetics of vintage American design.
The most visually pleasing parts of American design are fading away. The glorious neon signs that once lined our roadsides are nearly extinct. Mid-Century modern architecture is increasingly hard to find among non-residential structures. And products that used to come branded with machine-stamped chrome badges and hand-drawn typographical elements are now made overseas and marked with plastic decals.
This tragic state of affairs is widening the gap between the golden age of design and the present day. So Bill has spent the last decade-plus on a mission to capture the finest examples of what’s left. He travels the back roads of America looking for neon signs, junkyards, yard sales, antique stores, estate sales–anywhere evidence of these endangered designs can still be found.
The result is a graphic collection of design and typography from an era that predates the computers and specialized software used by modern-day designers. These images depict forms that were conceived, created, and produced manually on a drawing table using tools and techniques that are nearly obsolete today.
These designers were true craftsmen. Bill's hope is that his site http://www.recapturist.com can serve as a reference guide–a resource that helps bridge the design and typographic styles of the past with those of today–and perhaps even be a source of inspiration for whatever comes next. https://twitter.com/recapturist // https://www.instagram.com/recapturist/ // https://www.facebook.com/recapturist // http://www.pinterest.com/recapturist