Macintosh pirate flag reincarnated as art, for sale by original designer Susan Kare

Posted:
in General Discussion edited March 2015
Former Apple designer Susan Kare, who created famously distinct icons for the original Macintosh operating system, is selling through her online shop reproductions of the pirate flag that flew over the Mac team's building in 1983.


Pirate flag as seen in 1984 Fortune Magazine photo (left) with Kare's reproduction. | Source: Folklore.org


More of an homage than a direct copy, the hand-painted reproductions harken back to Kare's original design that flew over Bandley 3, a building which housed the original Macintosh Divison on Apple's Cupertino, Calif., campus.

According to Andy Hertzfeld, one of Apple's first developers, the flag was inspired by a slogan coined by late cofounder Steve Jobs to inspire the Macintosh team. Jobs introduced three "Sayings from Chairman Jobs" during an off-site retreat in 1983:

"Real artists ship. It's better to be a pirate than join the navy. Mac in a book by 1986."

Drawing from Jobs' sayings, and to stand apart from other nondescript buildings on Apple's growing campus, Macintosh programmer Steve Capps suggested flying a flag.
A few days before we moved into the new building, Capps bought some black cloth and sewed it into a flag. He asked Susan Kare to paint a big skull and crossbones in white at the center. The final touch was the requisite eye-patch, rendered by a large, rainbow-colored Apple logo decal.
Kare's flags are hand-painted and come in 3-by-5 foot or 4-by-6 foot sizes priced at $1,900 and $2,500, respectively. The pieces are considered art and not intended for outdoor use.
«134

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 61
    It's cool, for sure.


    But $2500 is Retina iMac money.
  • Reply 2 of 61
    It's cool, for sure.


    But $2500 is Retina iMac money.

    You're allowed to spend $5,000, if you so wish.
  • Reply 3 of 61
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member

    Apple aren't exactly pirates nowadays are they? You go in to an Apple Store and it's about as sterile and corporate as you can get.

  • Reply 4 of 61
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    Check out Kare's Twitter account. I get the feeling she's not too crazy about Apple creating a new font and calling it San Francisco.
  • Reply 5 of 61
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post



    Check out Kare's Twitter account. I get the feeling she's not too crazy about Apple creating a new font and calling it San Francisco.

     

    Stealing her font name was about as classy as stealing the Swift name from the academics who created the real Swift language: http://swift-lang.org/main/

     

    Apple need to stop doing this.

  • Reply 6 of 61
    bugsnwbugsnw Posts: 712member
    that's not a very good clone of the original flag that's in the background of the mac team pic.
  • Reply 7 of 61
    boredumbboredumb Posts: 1,414member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post

    It's cool, for sure.

    But $2500 is Retina iMac money.


    You're allowed to spend $5,000, if you so wish.

    Okay, you get the flags, I'll get 43 shares of Apple instead;)

  • Reply 8 of 61
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    ascii wrote: »
    Apple aren't exactly pirates nowadays are they? You go in to an Apple Store and it's about as sterile and corporate as you can get.

    What would make an Apple Store not sterile or corporate?
  • Reply 9 of 61
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,594member
    ascii wrote: »
    Apple aren't exactly pirates nowadays are they? You go in to an Apple Store and it's about as sterile and corporate as you can get.
    Some would argue that they are robbing you blind. Arr!

    I don't think Apple stores are what is generally considered sterile and corporate. They all look much the same but they are stylish and minimalist and in terms of retail design they are still a cut above the rest. There's nothing cheap about them.
  • Reply 10 of 61
    swiftswift Posts: 436member

    I think he wants them to sell weed. Maybe someday...

  • Reply 11 of 61
    I prefer the Sad Mac with crossbones flag that I think was in a [I]Futurama[/I] episode. I wish I could figure out which episode that was.
  • Reply 12 of 61
    ascii: "You go in to an Apple Store and it's about as sterile and corporate as you can get."

    What do you want, draperies and throw pillows???
  • Reply 13 of 61
    ascii wrote: »
    You go into an Apple Store and it's about as sterile and corporate as you can get.

    Yet they're always full of people... and they sell a ton of stuff.

    Weird, right?
  • Reply 14 of 61
    redhotfuzz wrote: »
    ascii: "You go in to an Apple Store and it's about as sterile and corporate as you can get."

    What do you want, draperies and throw pillows???

    He wants to troll.
  • Reply 15 of 61
    rogifan wrote: »
    ascii wrote: »
    Apple aren't exactly pirates nowadays are they? You go in to an Apple Store and it's about as sterile and corporate as you can get.

    What would make an Apple Store not sterile or corporate?

    By putting up this flag. All over the place.
  • Reply 16 of 61
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post



    It's cool, for sure.





    But $2500 is Retina iMac money.



    Yep; nice but it's a bit too much for a painted piece of rag.

  • Reply 17 of 61
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ascii View Post

     

     

    Stealing her font name was about as classy as stealing the Swift name from the academics who created the real Swift language: http://swift-lang.org/main/

     

    Apple need to stop doing this.




    How do you know they stole it?  Maybe they asked permission to use the name or offered them some money.  I don't hear them complaining.  It got them some publicity at least anyway.

  • Reply 18 of 61
    solipsismy wrote: »
    I prefer the Sad Mac with crossbones flag that I think was in a Futurama episode. I wish I could figure out which episode that was.

    I missed that.

    I love Futurama. I see there is a new series in iTunes here in England. However, it doesn't look nearly as funny, going by the trailers, sadly. The first four series I could watch forever.
  • Reply 19 of 61
    brlawyer wrote: »
    It's cool, for sure.



    But $2500 is Retina iMac money.


    Yep; nice but it's a bit too much for a painted piece of rag.

    Some people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.
  • Reply 20 of 61
    thrangthrang Posts: 761member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by ascii View Post

     

    Apple aren't exactly pirates nowadays are they? You go in to an Apple Store and it's about as sterile and corporate as you can get.




    Yes, I'd prefer a dark, dusty and disorganized shop with non-working and discontinued products being demoed by fat smelly hacker-types who immediately gravitate toward showing you how you can hack yourself in the terminal and laugh at inappropriate times, mostly through their nose. Yes, this is what I'm missing...

Sign In or Register to comment.