Date Archives April 2009

Tweenbot: The Adorable Robot Who Needs Your Help

My friend Max sent me this great video about a little robot named Tweenbot, who has a little flag attached to his head telling people he needs their help because he can only move in straight lines. It’s creator, Kacie Kinzer, wanted to see if it could get from the northeast corner of Washington Square Park to the southwest corner, completely dependent on people to steer it in the right direction.

The experiment ended up being a success, as it only took 42 minutes and 29 people to help it out. And while I think it’s a really cute experiment, it kind of made me think of the even bigger picture.

Why is that these people are willing to help a cardboard robot find it’s way, but not a homeless person living in a cardboard box? Obviously there’s much less commitment to a small cardboard robot that’s scooting by in a public park, but it’s still kind of odd to me. I’ve been thinking a lot about trying to figure out ways in which I can help people less fortunate lately. It’s kind of what President Obama has been talking about with his commitment to public service, and giving back to our fellow people. I’ll be posting more about my ideas soon, but if you’re an artist or designer or creative type in general, I’d love to hear your thoughts.



One of my Twitter friends posted this awesome little 16step sequencer created by Andr√© Michelle called ToneMatrix, and I have to admit it’s an addicting little toy! I basically made some Postal Service type beats with absolutely no trouble at all, the only trouble is that I can’t record the beats I make. Kitsune Noir will be coming to your dance floor really soon! Play around with it and let me know what you think.


Casiotone for the Painfully Alone

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Old Panda Days (featuring Nick Krgovich) by Casiotone for the Painfully Alone

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Optimist Vs. The Silent Alarm (When The Saints Go Marching In) by Casiotone for the Painfully Alone

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Killers by Casiotone for the Painfully Alone

It’s been way too long since I posted any music on the blog, so I wanted to share a couple of albums I’ve been listening to. They both come from one man, Owen Ashworth, who’s better known as Casiotone for the Painfully Alone. In the last couple months he’s has two albums released. The first was called Advanced Battery Life, featuring 11 years of collaborations and covers from all over the musical spectrum. The second, more recent release was called Vs. Children, which is a more of a proper album.

Advanced Battery Life starts out with a collaboration with Nick Krgovich, who is most well know for his collaborations with No Kids and P:ano. This might just be may favorite song of the year. There’s something haunting and amazing about it, and I’m sure I’ve listened to it at least 30 times or more. The rest of the album is filled with great covers of old classics from artists like Paul Simon and Bruce Springsteen.

But his new official album is where the gold is. Vs. Children is a much deeper album which nearly becomes a cohesive piece. The songs are mostly about criminals and love, which turns the album to a more melancholy tone, but his songs have never been more beautiful.

The songs above are my favorite from the album. I love Optimist vs. The Silent Alarm for the line, “Raise a little family, on Schlitz and Mickey Mouse”… it’s such a gem. My other favorite is Killers, which is filled with beautiful organs, and the last line of the song goes, “We could be killers, just for one night”, riff off the Bowie song, Heroes.

You can pick up both of these albums over on Tomlab, which I highly suggest you do.


Jon Klassen

Jon Klassen is a Los Angeles based illustrator who in my opinion, is eff’ing amazing. His style is filled with all kinds of great shapes and patterns, and while it has a simplicity to it, his pieces still feel full of depth. He also has uses a really muted color palette for his work which really helps accentuate the mood of his work.

See more of his work at his site, Burst of Beaden, and read a nice interview with him over on Illustrationmundo.


Agnes Montgomery

I’d say that the majority of collages in the world are kinda crappy, and made by kids in high school. But then you get someone like Agnes Montgomery, who takes this simple act and turns it into the raddest thing ever. Most of you probably know her work from the cover of Panda Bears album, Person Pitch, but the rest of her work is just as good, if not better than that. Totally beautiful.


Neil Krug

Check out the beautifully trippy photos of Neil Krug.. Neil lives in Kansas, taking photos of naked ladies, hippy dudes and beautiful landscapes. He gets these really gorgeous effects to his photos by using expired polaroids, which make them let amazing.

Neil also recently did a mini-interview with Fecal Face, which you can read here.


The Cloudy Collection

I got an email from the extremely talented David Huyck last week letting me know that he started a new project called The Cloudy Collection featuring beautiful letterpress prints. There are 7 prints total, with contributions by Meg Hunt, Bill Fick, John Martz, Amy Crehore, Tom Kaczynski, Steven Weissman, and David Huyck. David also went out of his way to make sure that these are environmentally sound, as the prints are made on 4 x 6″ ivory-colored bamboo paper using 100% vegetable-based inks, and printed with all wind-power by Boxcar Press.

The series of 7 are only $35, plus there’s free shipping to the U.S. and Canada. A portion of the sales are also going to the Nature Conservancy. Basically this is the most awesome little print project I’ve seen in a while. He should have another set in a few months,and I’m sure I’ll post about them then.


The Desktop Wallpaper Project featuring Jeffrey Bowman (1/2)

The Desktop Wallpaper Project featuring Jeffrey Bowman

Jeffrey Bowman

Click here to see Jeefrey’s other wallpaper.

Hey all, Wednesday is here already. I’ve been sleepy all day, so I’m just getting to these awesome wallpapers, my apologies. This week’s desktop comes from the amazingly talented Jeffrey Bowman, an illustrator from London who’s definitely starting to blow up. He’s done work for Converse and Computer Arts, as well as being one half of the creative team over at The Wizard’s Hat. He’s also just recently updated his portfolio, so check that out as well.

For the DWP this week he’s created two wonderful wallpapers. The first is an explosion of shapes and colors, perfect for jazzing up a dark and lonely desktop. The second is nature-y looking collage of wooden logs and cloudy skies all presented in a cool-ish color palette.

I hope you all enjoy these pair, check back next week for more goodness!