Date Archives June 2010

Pet Penguin in Japan

My friend Kyle sent me this video the other day and I can’t stop watching it. It’s from RealTV, which I don’t think has been around since the late 90’s, and features a Japanese family who own a 10 year old King Penguin named Lala. For some reason they edited together like some kind of Charlie Chaplin adventure where the penguin goes to a fish market for a snack, but still it’s soooo dang cute. I mean, they make it seem like he’s a tiny person with a personality, I just can’t get enough. I wonder if Lala is still alive?


‘Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow’ Cover by Lykke Li

This morning I started thinking about how Lykke Li hasn’t released an album since Youth Novels which came out in 2008. Youth Novels was such an amazing album of songs about love that sounds like they were lost from the 60’s. Sadly it looks like there’s going to be a long wait for her sophomore release but until then she’s done this cover of Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow which is pretty sentimental. It’s pretty sad but beautiful at the same time, and of course her voice sounds amazing. Get the tissues ready.


Modules by Interface Studio Architects

Some folks are building.

The above video shows the construction of modules that make up a project by Interface Studio Architects creatively titled Modular Apartments. When completed, the 72-unit project will look something like this. Modular construction can seem very simple, but even in this short video you can see traces of the complexity involved as these boxes are stacked and pumbing, electrical, data and structural systems are connected. It’s harder than legos; it’s more like pipe dream, tetris and k’nex combined.

ISA features other projects on their website, like  the 100k House.

The video was produced for ISA by architectural photographer Sam Oberter.


Weathervane by Joaquín Cociña

From the opening moments of Joaquín Cociña’s video animation Weathervane, I was intrigued. I continued watching in an attempt to piece together some form of cohesive meaning from the animation. By the end, I was none the wiser, but then I realised that finding meaning wasn’t really the point. Composed of seven short vignettes made from charcoal drawings, Weathervane is all about marrying the monochromatic eeriness of charcoal drawings with movement.

On the surface, each vignette looks quite cute before a black atmosphere envelops the frame. Appropriating various forms – bath water, tears, smoke, wind and shadows – this atmosphere haunts the animation. What I believe is particularly impressive is the nuances in the detail of both the image and the sound effects, so that every part of the frame embodies this evil apparition. It is incredibly creepy and extremely fascinating to watch.


‘Locations’ by Matthew Lyons

One of my current favorite illustrators Matthew Lyons is out with a new site of illustrations called ‘Locations’ and boy howdy are they good looking. There isn’t much info about why he started the series or what it’s about exactly but it does a nice job of exploring his style. This retro-contemporary thing is certainly popular right now but Matthew’s version with so much saturated color, moody lighting and “grit” make me quite happy.


Dress Up

Described as a “self conscious attempt at ladylike”, the latest collection from Dress Up brings together a small selection of carefully tailored pieces that are simultaneously sophisticated, feminine and modern. Australian designer Stephanie Downey takes a highly intellectual approach to fashioning garments that actually play on the label’s name, aiming to create pieces that transport the wearer back to the their childhood games of playing dress up. However, this time around, the clothing fits the wearer’s proportions and the process is given a more subtle and elegant interpretation. There is something very serene and restrained about the choice of colours and the cut of the garments that definitely conjures the essence of being a lady in the most understated and refined way possible.


Keith Haring on Blik

It’s not SpongeBob. You may already be familiar with Blik, the removable wall decals that can spruce up your apartment without affecting your security deposit, but did you know Blik recently added several Keith Haring designs?  If you remember the 1980’s and 90’s, you probably remember seeing one of his radiant babies or hearts, both of which are available to stick on your wall.  But my favorite design is the Untitled Face.

The first instances of the three-eyed face that I’m aware of are from 1981 in an untitled painting and in 1982 a mural in the bowery. The mural’s location is (or was) en route from Haring apartment and studio, and covered by piles of trash; so one day he got a shovel, removed fifty bags of trash from in front of the wall, and painted. The original mural was covered over only a few months of display in the summer of 1982. The mural was re-painted in 2008 by Deitch Projects to commemorate what would have been Haring’s 50th birthday. In July 2009 the commemorative mural was covered by a Os Gemeos mural.  In 2010, the Os Gemeos mural was covered with a Shepard Farey mural.

Maybe in ten years your mural will grace the corner of Bower and Houston, and maybe thirty years after that someone will turn your design into a giant, removable sticker for your wall. Until then you can have a fragment of the original Haring mural smiling down from your wall: reminding your of your ambition and reminding uninformed guests of an animated sponge.


Emory Allen

I received an email from a fella’ named Emory Allen the other day letting me know about his work and I come across some really fun stuff. First up is the two images above which are called Fight Dirty. Funny enough it’s the same image just flipped 180º… could you tell? It’s amazing how he was able to make the text work both right side up and upside down, not to mention that the fighting guys are awesome looking as well.

Then he’s also got this rad little zine coming out called Lost In Patterns, which, as you might have guessed, is filled with all kinds of crazy patterns made up of wildly colored monsters and the such. It’s only 12 pages but it’s also only $4 plus shipping which is a total deal. So much good stuff to check out, I highly suggest you do so.


Volkswagen Milano Taxi Concept

It’s been quite a while since I posted anything car related but this new taxi concept called the Milano by Volkswagen certainly grabbed my attention. While I was in New York it was so nice riding everywhere in cabs. They were clean (mostly), quick and it was sooo easy to pay, just swipe your card and you’re good to go. Here in Los Angeles cabs are antiquated, try paying with a credit card and you’ll get sass from the grizzled driver. That’s why this concept is so appealing to me, it’s a perfect people mover.

First off it’s electric, which means it can go 186 miles between charges and go a maximum of 74 MPH. It’s also got only two seats for passengers and the trunk has been moved to the front, passenger seat for easy access to your luggage. It’s also got a little touchscreen which not only allows you to pay for your ride but you can also “call up information (in various languages) about “points of interest” (POIs) along the route, navigation data (route overview, remaining route and arrival time), weather data and the current date and time.”


The Updated Mac Mini

Earlier this morning Apple released a new Mac Mini onto the world and I was quite surprised at some of the subtle design tweaks that are looking great. First is the all aluminum body which is way better than the janky plastic top on previous versions. Now the overall body is much cleaner and sleeker looking including how it wraps into the back of the computer.

But what I really love about the new design is actually the bottom of the computer. Most people probably won’t ever upgrade their computer themselves, but Apple has designed an easy access hatch so you can swap out (I’m guessing) the RAM or memory of the computer. You simply rotate the black disc on the bottom of the computer and voila, you’re inside. I’m a firm believer that what’s most important are the small details and this is a perfect example.