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Meet The Woman Behind Miss Piggy

Introducing Miss Piggy’s mother: Bonnie Erickson, who created and named the Muppet, was also the designer responsible for some of the other iconic puppets, including the cantankerous Statler and Waldorf.

Erickson started working with Jim Henson in 1970, when she was hired to design the costumes for the Muppet special The Frog Prince (1971). She’s been in the Muppet business ever since, and now serves as a director at the Jim Henson Legacy.

Gothamist interviewed Erickson at her home in New York, asking questions about her work with Henson, as well as her collaborations with Maurice Sendak and more.

"Jim would give us sketches, very rough sketches,” Erickson told Gothamist about the Muppet design process. From there, she would get to put her own spin on the characters. For instance, she named Miss Piggy for her mother’s favorite singer, Peggy Lee. Alas, Miss Piggy Lee’s name got shortened before the character made it on to The Muppet Show. (The creator worried that Peggy Lee wouldn’t take the homage as a compliment.)

Read more inside secrets from the making of The Muppets at Gothamist.

All images courtesy Gothamist via YouTube.

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Pop Chart Lab
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Comics
The Origins of 36 Marvel Characters, Illustrated
Pop Chart Lab
Pop Chart Lab

No matter what their powers, every super hero has an origin story, from Spider-Man’s radioactive bite to Iron Man’s life-threatening chest shrapnel. In their latest poster, the designers at Pop Chart Lab have taken their infographic savvy to the Marvel Universe, charting the heroic origins of 36 different Marvel characters through miniature, minimalist comics.

Without using any words, they’ve managed to illustrate Bucky Barnes's plane explosion and subsequent transformation into the Winter Soldier, Jessica Jones’s car crash, the death of the Punisher’s family, and other classic stories from the major Marvel canon while paying tribute to the comic book form.

Explore the poster below, and see a zoomable version on Pop Chart Lab’s website.

A poster featuring 36 minimalist illustrations of superhero origin stories.
Pop Chart Lab

Keep your eyes open for future Marvel-Pop Chart crossovers. The Marvel Origins: A Sequential Compendium poster is “the first release of what we hope to be a marvelous partnership,” as Pop Chart Lab’s Galvin Chow puts it. Prints are available for pre-order starting at $37 and are scheduled to start shipping on March 8.

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iStock
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technology
The Design Tricks That Make Smartphones Addictive—And How to Fight Them
iStock
iStock

Two and a half billion people worldwide—and 77 percent of Americans—have smartphones, which means you probably have plenty of company in your inability to go five minutes without checking your device. But as a new video from Vox points out, it's not that we all lack self-control: Your phone is designed down to the tiniest details to keep you as engaged as possible. Vox spoke to Tristan Harris, a former Google design ethicist, who explains how your push notifications, the "pull to refresh" feature of certain apps (inspired by slot machines), and the warm, bright colors on your phone are all meant to hook you. Fortunately, he also notes there's things you can do to lessen the hold, from the common sense (limit your notifications) to the drastic (go grayscale). Watch the whole thing to learn all the dirty details—and then see how long you can spend without looking at your phone.

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