in 2003 there was a new magazine in town, and i used to be magazine crazy. me being the curious person i am, i got in touch because i decided i wanted to be involved. the magazine was called "dummy" each issue revolved around one topic, designed by a new designer or design team. actually a cool idea, the reality was probably another story.
i met up with the guys who made the magazine. i think each individually. it turned out the next issue was going to be the 4th issue, the "deutschland" issue and hey wouldn't it be crazy if someone from the other side of the world ie.: new zealand would design it. fuck yeah i thought. and i did.
i needed a design concept for the issue. i had just moved out of my ex-girlfriend's place and moved into the most shittiest, cheapest, skankiest place i could find the other side of town. even worse, the apartment stank. i wanted it rock bottom to force myself to get my shit back together. my new office space was as big as a bed. i had an internet cable because i thought wireless was too fancy. i shared this office, the 1 internet cable and the project with my assistant (with whom i am still very good friends) it was all a bit crazy. and creative. it was fun.
i came up with the title text 3am one morning in, not on, the toilet in my stinky flat, possibly thwacked out of my brain. set in black german industry norm type on white, it was bold, ballsy, very paul and fucking hilarious. translated from german it read “attention: it’s gonna get strenous and frustrating and boring and depressing and grey and even a little bit annoying. welcome to germany. dummy four. ps.: the weathers gonna be shitty too.” the cover set the attitude for the rest of the design. the issue went out, it won some prize, prizes maybe. i broke the rule and designed the 13th issue too, iconically the "advertising and selling" issue.
i may of pissed some people off on the job. but the cover stands as one of my favourite works ever. made me realise how much i actually love my job as a graphic designer and how much i love my new found passion - writing. and, even better, i finally got my shit back together.