The Best Christmas Gift: No Shopping Required

So this wraps up my first year of writing this blog. I thought I would be a little more consistent about writing when I got started, but hey, this is number twenty-eight, so I guess I did have something to say. I hope a few people have had a laugh or two, and found some value in the content. And most of all, I hope you learned a little about me and my thirty-six year journey that has been Linea Forma.

For this final post of the year, let me start by saying “Cheers”. I really don’t go all out for Christmas. My only son is over forty, and there are no grandchildren. I haven’t gone gift shopping at the malls in over a decade. But I still love the family connections this time of the year. As the oldest of five children, I’m very lucky to have a brother and two sisters, as well as my son and daughter-in-law living in Oregon. And at least one or two big events usually happen yearly between all of us. Our other brother and his whole family live around Chicago, where we all grew up. So we are a Northwest/Midwest family.

As the family artist, and the one with the longest family history line … oldest child and now “patriarch” (INO), I know the most old family stories. And I know how to get them down in print. So since 1999, I have become the family historian by creating our family calendar. Each family member’s face is on their birthday square; anniversaries are noted; Jimi Hendrix’s birthday is always honored. Each of the five siblings’ families gets their own page of photos on their birth month representing their past year, and the other seven months’ upper page images change every year, based on the theme for the year. Raised in Chicago, my father and grandfather were die-hard Cubs fans,  who never saw their team win it all, so this year’s theme had to be dedicated to them. Lots of Cubs historical photos and history run through the calendar this year.

The changing themes over the years have explained our family tree in greater detail on both sides of the family, covered family events like weddings, anniversaries, graduations, births and deaths. Each year, they document another chapter in our family’s history and story. Taken together over the last 18 years, we can watch our family evolve. And with Northwest and Midwest wings of the family physically separated, the calendars tie us together, even if Photoshop sometimes gets involved in the connections. Each year, the calendar moves forward and evolves creatively. No other project gives me more creative freedom, though my family can be a tough client—some members more picky than others. (You know who you are.) Does Sunday really start the week, or end it, I wonder? But the end product just keeps getting better, although, the back cover proudly exclaims, as it always has, “Giobbi Calendars • Founded in 1999. What you’ve come to accept™”.

I had no idea when I created my first calendar for 1999 that I would be starting a tradition. More than that, a continuing family history. I keep every one, and so do my family members. My siblings love them, and their kids and grandchildren learn about their family connections through them. The calendar takes a lot of hours to create, though I’ve got my technique down to a science. But I have an amazing, loving family and as long as I can tell our story, I’ll remain the “visual historian”. Viva Giobbi! Saluto!!

Happy Holidays to All! Wishing everyone the best in 2017.

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Bill Giobbi (bgob1) is founder and owner of Linea Forma Design, a 38 year old design firm specializing in creating graphic content for print, web and video. He is a graphic designer, industrial designer, model maker, technical illustrator and a digital 3D content creator/animator, with a love of all things design.
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8 Responses

  1. John Giobbi

    So happy we have you to do this for all of us every year. Thanks for all the time and sweat that goes into each!
    Happy New Year.

    Love you,
    Brother John

    • bgob1

      It’s my pleasure, brother John.

  2. Scott

    Bill…..Thanks for including me. It means so much to me. You’re the best cuz/ bro a gut could have. Love ya

    • bgob1

      Scott, you’re the one I’ve known the longest. How could I ever forget you?

  3. Elisa Giobbi Mills

    Viva Giobbi! Saluto!! Haha! You’re phenomenal, Bill!!! These calendars have been prizes, and I treasure them. And, you. Mwah!

    Your Little Sister

    • bgob1

      Thanks, that makes me happy E!

  4. Connie & Bob

    LOVE YOUR MEMORY MAKING, BILL! Merry Christmas Blessings to All!

    • bgob1

      Thanks Connie. Merry Christmas to you and the whole family.