Ware is an ardent collector of ragtime paraphernalia and occasionally publishes a journal devoted to the music titled The Ragtime Ephemeralist. He also plays the banjo and piano. The influence of the music and the graphics of its era can be seen in Ware's work, especially in regard to logos and layout. Ware has designed album covers and posters for such ragtime performers as the Et Cetera String Band, Virginia Tichenor, Reginald R. Robinson, the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra and Guido Nielsen.
He has also designed covers and posters for non-ragtime performers such as Andrew Bird's Bowl of Fire and 5ive Style. In October 2005 Ware designed the elaborate cover art for Penguin Books' new edition of Voltaire's Candide.
Ware was commissioned by Chip Kidd to design the inner machinations of the bird on the cover of Haruki Murakami's novel The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.
In 2003-04, Ware worked with Ira Glass of This American Life and Chicago historian Tim Samuelson to illustrate and design Lost Buildings about Samuelson and the preservation of Chicago's old buildings, particularly Louis Sullivan's buildings. Originally produced for a live "Lost in America" stage show in 2003, Lost Buildings was later published as a book and DVD. In 2007-08, he produced animations for the This American Life television series on Showtime and also contributed to the show as a color consultant. Ware created poster art for Tamara Jenkins' film The Savages (2007).
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