Fun with info graphics

I’m currently designing a 200+ page book for an industrial developer in the Czech Republic and have so far had to design about 8 different maps of Europe- including roadways, ancient trade routes, a Moravian Pass and something called ‘The Blue Banana’- for the project. All this diagramming is about as enlivening as putting on chain-mail and drinking from a bucket of sand, so it’s fun to recall favorite silly info graphics as a counterpoint:


This was drawn in 1967 by rabid Velvet Underground fan Jonathan Richman (yes, he of the Modern Lovers) and published in the Boston music magazine Vibrations. Note the ‘made-it line’ running across the diagram– only VU and (mysteriously) the Who join the ‘god’-like Beatles in making the grade, whereas Hendrix, Jefferson Airplane and the entire sub-genre of art rock fall well short and crater into obscurity.

Then, on a more blatantly farcical note, there’s this pie chart that I love:


Update: Reader JF submits this one for consideration…


3 thoughts on “Fun with info graphics”

  1. Fascinating! J. Richman is an interesting character. Did you know that he stopped playing amplified rock music because he said he didn’t want to play anything that might hurt babies’ ears?… My first rock show ever was seeing him at some club that later disappeared in Harvard Square, probably in 1983, right after the great ‘Jonathan Sings!’ came out.

  2. I like the story about when he first unveiled the ‘Sentimental Jonathan’ persona in front of an audience who was expecting ‘Punk Jonathan’. Apparently, he played 6 encores to a booing audience in sock feet, vigorously kicking his feet up and down while playing new material like “I’m a Little Dinosaur”. He has a great willfully perverse side– anyone can go punk while Pink Floyd-like noodling is in, but to go infantile when punk is in really takes nerve.

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