Date Archives July 2013

DJ Shadow twists up Machinedrum’s “Eyesdontlie”

machinedrum eyesdontlie

Machinedrum’s music has been around for a minute now. Experimenting in glitch and beat music for the past ten years, the dude enjoys coming in from a different angle with each record. Vapor City is his latest project. Based around an imaginary city, each track represents a different district. This first single, “Eyesdontlie,” continues his tradition of hypnotic and heavy beats.

Yet nothing like a remix to make it fly.

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Thoughts on Album Cover Art

Album cover art from Taken by Trees and Allah-Las

If there’s one album I listen to on repeat, it’s the self-titled debut from the Allah-Las. Not only is it a joy to listen to from beginning to end, I enjoy the album cover, which features a pony-tailed girl listening to a seashell amidst the dark grey skies and khaki shores of an uninhabited beach. While perusing new music, I came across the latest album from the band Taken by Trees featuring a familiar cover; in fact, it seemed to be the very same image from the Allah-Las cover only flipped and brightened. Rather than listen to the album, I dismissed it altogether thinking, upon first look and judgment (which I admit is petty and ridiculous), that it was a blatant rip-off of my favorite album. But that is not the case, and this is an issue that warrants further discussion.

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Top Five From LAIY: Week Of July 8

Top Five From LAIY Week Of July 8 1

How To Fill A Niche: An Interview With Dave Pifer Of Secret Headquarters & Vacation Vinyl

In coolborhood Silver Lake, Sunset Junction is basically the hip Times Square. The area has everything and two stores that we love are comic book shop Secret Headquarters and record store Vacation Vinyl. They both are so unassuming and low key while resonating a very cool aura about them. We had the chance to speak with one of the co-owners of both of the stores, Dave Pifer, and got to hear all about how it is to run a store in the coolest part of town.

Top Five From LAIY Week Of July 8 2.1

Clare Graham At JF Chen

Artist Clare Graham has a knack for turning trash into treasures. His most recent body of work consists of furniture made from soda can tops, net and plastic wrapped bondage stuffed animals, button mirrors, and cabinets made from teddy bear eyes. His work is the recent subject of a little show at JF Chen and it is one of the craziest things we’ve seen. Some of his work is pretty affordable, too.

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Bote: Beautiful Toy Boats by BIG-GAME for Materia

BOTE by Big Game and Materia

I might not have the best sea-legs but I’m a big fan of boats. From old nautical paintings to ships in bottles, I’ve realized recently that there’s something about boats that I just love. Perhaps that’s the reason I really love Bote, a series of playful floating boats made from cork and plastic. Released in 2011, they’re the collaborative work of the Swiss-based design studio BIG-GAME and the Portuguese company Materia. Featuring a sailboat, a yacht and a cruise liner, they’re bound to make any kids bath-time fun!

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‘Anorak’: A Design Magazine for Kids

Anorak magazine

Anorak magazine

While on vacation in London last week, I spent some time at the Tate Modern museum marveling at their fantastic design shop. Out of all of the books, objects, and wares inhabiting their basement space, the kids department was the most inspiring. One of my favorite finds—even though it’s been around since 2006—was Anorak, a “happy mag” for kids. Founded by Cathy Olmedillas, who previously worked with seminal UK publications Sleazenation and The Face, the magazine is aimed at 6 to 12-year-olds, but it has plenty of poppy illustrations, games, cartoons, and stories to appeal to design-minded adults too.

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Memories of a Suburban Utopia: The Work of Anton Van Hertbruggen

Anton Van Hertbruggen

Anton Van Hertbruggen is a hugely talented illustrator from Belgium. Last year he released a stunning concertina book called Memories of a Suburban Utopia and the second I saw it I knew I had to own it. Depicting a surreal modern suburb, Anton’s book is unlike anything I’ve seen before and his images look even more fantastic when printed in this scrolling concertina format.

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Optical Worlds by Matthew Craven

Statue by Matthew Craven

Matthew Craven Ancient Pleasures

Ancient structures within labyrinths, tessellating totems, and faceless generals—these are the landscapes created by Matthew Craven. A recent graduate of New York’s School of Visual Arts, he renders mixed media optical illusions that are as bold as they are perplexing. With an emphasis on black and white patterns and natural shapes, Craven’s work recalls the past while capturing a completely modern aesthetic.

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Ornately Patterned Tiles by Matt W. Moore

Matt W. Moore Pattern Tiles

The first time I ever considered the idea of contemporary tile was in the pages of Dwell magazine some 10 years ago, when I came across Italian brand Bisazza. Their ads featured their tiles in these incredible mosaic patterns that I didn’t know even know were possible (this is a great example), I thought of tile as cheap and white and found in your bathroom. Since then tiles have certainly progressed, and these new patterned tiles by MWM (Matt W. Moore) are proof of that.

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Japanese Sounds Come Alive in Takashi Ohashi’s ‘Koukou’

???? | koukou

Takashi Ohashi is a motion designer based in Japan. His video Koukou is a visual work that explores the relationship between picture and sound by synchronizing an abstract animation with a song comprising of unique sounds taken from the Japanese language. It’s a fascinating exploration and one which really needs to be seen to be understood.

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Moveable Type by Pablo Delcán

Pablo Delcán chalkboard lettering

Pablo Delcán is a design wunderkind. His book cover art continues to enthrall with clever takes on Vladimir Nabokov and Jules Verne classics as well as reinterpretations of stories like The Three Little Pigs. (It’s hard not to fall for a story rendered entirely out of strips of bacon!) And though he continues to rack up impressive book jacket credits, his lettering skills are just as worthy of awe and applause.

In a short video aptly titled “Lettering”, Delcán showcases various lettering pieces including a series of chalk drawings done on a blackboard in his kitchen. Inspired by the front page news on that day’s New York Times or New York Post newspaper, he sets a boundary of 2 to 3 colors and gives himself 20–40 minutes every morning to create a single chalk drawing that stays up for a day before being erased the next morning. Though ephemeral in execution, his skill is both sharp and enduring.