One thing…

that I try to remember is to know what is important, not just to me but others as well.  In Stefan Sagmeisters latest book, Things That I Have Learned So Far In My Life, he reminds us that

“over time we get used to everything and start taking it for granted.”  ~Stefan Sagmeister

He is a master of getting out of the box.  He has recently done a workshop in Europe and one of my favorite designers/ artists, Julien Vallee was in attendence and inspired by him in making “do it without thinking of critics.”  Monsier Vallee also recently had his own showing, Raking Leaves In The Wind at Create Berlin a super inspiring place to be right now I think.


Dreamland by Andri Snaer Magnason.

Forward by Bjork:


A new book is out finally translated to English called Dreamland by Andri Snaer Magnason. This book had quite an impact in Iceland when it came out. The forward is written by Björk and she says:

“After Icelandic politicians had sold Icelandic nature as cheap energy to some of the industrial giants of this world without the peoples consent, the Icelandic people were upset.  We didn’t get a chance to defend ourselves.  Or our nature.  We couldn’t put into words our fury over the injustice of this.  Andri did.  You see, Iceland is today the largest untouched area in Europe. We were a Danish colony for 600 years. They treated us bad (as colonizers do). We were taxed heavily and isolated from the rest of the world. Which partially turned out to be a good thing, because we missed out on the industrial revolution and once we got our independence in 1944, me and my generation and anyone younger were excited to head straight for the green revolution and keep our nature…

Anyway, most Icelanders are not against dams or harnessing nature, but believe it can be done in a ‘green’ way, without sacrificing nature, and so the Icelandic people profit from it, not the international industrial giants.

Andri in his book not only explains the situation – what these politicians did behind the scenes – but also suggests other ways to interact with Icelandic nature and keep one’s dignity.  I have a feeling this is an universal problem that our generation will find solutions to.  This book is one of these solutions.”

Analog Futurism.

Check out Analog Futurism.  It’s upside down stop motion animation.  WordPress doesn’t embed the vimeo player yet but it’s worth the click.  Max Hattler is a super innovative director/ animator and Jemapur a Japanese musician full of intriguing beats and rhythms.

Directed and produced by Max Hattler
Music: Jemapur
Creative Director: + cruz
Animation: Max Hattler, Noriko Okaku
Assistant Animation: Philip Serfaty, Rodrigo Vives
Commissioned by: W+K Tokyo Lab
Available formats: HD, Beta SP, DVD
Length: 4’45”
Year: 2008

Street dream.

I found this work on a small street in Granada, Spain on my way to class one day.  It always reminded me of how connected everything is. I took a photo so I could look at again after I left.  I still think it’s beautiful although it is much darker than I had noticed then, I had thought it about dreams more than about death.  It’s by El Nino Azul, The Blue Boy.

Semiconductor: Nuit Blache

One of the most interesting and far out motion graphics producers out there, SEMICONDUCTOR, just did a large scale exhibit at Nuit Blache Paris.  This years Nuit Blache spotlighted the city’s five major train stations.  Semiconductor played on the limits of perception with a timelapse animation called Brilliant Noise at Gare Saint-Lazare.

A sense for the richness in life.

With the year being so productive and bringing of bountiful colors and nourishment, the time moving towards the darkest days and Halloween, I am reminded of the film/animation called Mirror Mask a rich and imaginative work.  It was done by Dave McKean and Neil Gaiman two artists who I have found can grasp a breathtaking sense of beauty and combine it with the fecundity of our world to create a metaphor or a backdrop to a story of mythical proportions.

Edgar Allan Poe has said, “There is no exquisite beauty without some strangeness in the proportion…” and both of these artists have found the things in our world that are hidden and so often out of proportion to what we see in everyday life, albeit quite darkly.

The art in this film is stunning and I think, quite original.  The writings of Neil Gaiman have always inspired me, his ability to tell stories is amazing.  As he focuses on the words Dave McKean works tirelessly on satisfyingly fantastic images which tell the stories well.

If you are interested in the works of creative and imaginative storytellers this movie will fill you with wonder.  Here is a short to satisfy that craving until you can get the film, it’s an animated version of Shakespear’s Sonnet 138.

Sense of color II.

A super interesting note about the previous post on color and it’s psychological, subjective qualities.

When I was completing the color test a window was directly behind my monitor while I was sitting under florescent lighting looking at the screen.  Natural sunlight is at such a high intensity much higher than bulb lighting and our sense of color perceives that intensity as blue, the lower intensity light, indoor lighting isn’t as bright giving that light a more reddish hue.

I find it interesting that with blue light, higher intensity light, interfering with my perception from behind the monitor, made it harder to see the tiny nuances of difference in the color test at the blue range.  Doing the test again in a controlled lighting environment made the sense keen and I made a perfect score.

A side-note is that because electromagnetic waves are all around us, only a small range of these waves being visible light, there is much more affecting our perception than meets the eye.

EM radiation carries energy and momentum, which may be imparted when it interacts with matter.

Our world is so much more subtle than we are daily able to pay attention to, and it is always in flux.  Color theory is still not pure.  The problem arises because the absorption of light by material substances follows different rules from the perception of light by the eye. A major issue for designers of print is that the printing process requiring ink and a subtractive process gives material substance to a color while our eye perceives the direct wavelengths causing color perception.

Many historical “color theorists” have assumed that three “pure” primary colors can mix all possible colors, and that any failure of specific paints or inks to match this ideal performance is due to the impurity or imperfection of the colorants. In reality, only imaginary “primary colors” used in colorimetry can “mix” or quantify all visible (perceptually possible) colors; but to do this the colors are defined as lying outside the range of visible colors: they cannot be seen. Any three real “primary” colors of light, paint or ink can mix only a limited range of colors, called a gamut, which is always smaller (contains fewer colors) than the full range of colors humans can perceive.

So does an artist, the human element, give a work of art, design, or even a photograph that personal touch just by a different mood, a different lighting scenario….  a perception of color… a sense?  Of course, and the texture of our differences is stunningly beautiful.