Tuesday, January 29, 2008

3D Graffiti

It is a shame that you have to wear 3D goggles to view this 3D graffiti light sculpture, as it looks amazing.

Monday, January 28, 2008

You Are My Sunshine - Greenpeace Video

A new technology set to replay light bulbs!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Video Tracing To Create 3D Models

This is a neat way of simply and quickly building 3D models by using video of the object you wish to create a model of.

“VideoTrace is a system for interactively generating realistic 3D models of objects from video—models that might be inserted into a video game, a simulation environment, or another video sequence. The user interacts with VideoTrace by tracing the shape of the object to be modeled over one or more frames of the video.”

Link to the video trace site.

Found on DesignVerb .

Fire Trick

Nice little trick for budding young pyrotechnics out there. I have not yet tried this out myself, so if you end up in accident and emergency don't blame me!

How To Make Fire Balls - video powered by Metacafe

Found on DesignVerb

Icon Watch

This retro style watch that makes more than a giant reference to 8 bit computer games, looks like it was taken directly off the wrist of Mario. I want one please! It appears that this design was revealed way back in 2005, but I can't find out if you can buy in in Europe. More info (in Japanese can be found here on FunShop).

Originally read on TechDigest.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Sultans Elephant

This is quite frankly speaking, one of the most moving and spectacular things I think I have ever seen! I can't believe that this passed my by, as it took place in London about 18 months ago. If you have not seen it, watch the YouTube video below and be amazed.

This epic street theatre featuring gigantic puppets was entitled 'The Sultans Elephant' and is the fifth in a series of works that have enchanted crowds across cities worldwide. Performed by the Royal de Luxe theatre company

The girl genuinely seems to take on a life of her own, and is disturbingly realistic at times. When she moves and looks towards the child sat swinging on her arm I was blown away. These guys really know how to 'animate', and to do so on such an epic scale is awe inspiring.

The music featured in the video is Decollage by Les Balayeurs Du Desert, and can be bought here from iTunes.

More spectacular images of the event can be seen on the Flickr page of Simon Crubellier. I have used his photo's here in this post.

More information can be found on the official site, or from the Wikipedia entry.

Friday, January 18, 2008

The Decapitator

When I was studying art at college my self and my fellow students were lucky enough to be given a workshop by a creative duo that called themselves AVI Billboard Interventions, that also were a new breed of culture jammers. They worked to subvert existing outdoor advertising, to create a new and often opposing message to the one of the original advert. What was new about their approach was the way that they hijacked the advert. Until then, people would use far more crude means to subvert or hijack the message, such as spraying or painting over the image. But theirs was not such an immediately obvious take over. At the time the Apple Macintosh was just starting to revolutionise the design scene, and was putting cost effective and professional typography and print technology in the hands of the masses. Their approach was to harness this new opportunity make their changes to the billboard in such a way as it would be unperceivable to the viewer. Simply by selecting the right font, and replacing a few select words of a campaign, they infected billboards like a hidden virus, and their subversive message was suddenly given the weight and credibility of a polished, glossy marketing campaign, appearing to be delivered by a major brand. A billboard ad, ironically located at the exit of a car pound for towed illegally parked cars, suddenly Volvo cars appeared to be telling people to 'Buy A Bike' rather than their latest station wagon, and the government began suddenly being honest and self critical, telling people how their policies were failing.

I was reminded of the work of AVI after seeing the work of London based culture jammer 'The Decapitator', who has started re-appropriating billboards, albeit in a far more grotesque and darker fashion. The Decapitator pastes an image over the heads of models in adverts, to make them appear as if they have somehow been decapitated. Having carefully recreated the correct looking background, the subversion is not immediately apparent, and the viewer is left believing that the company behind the advert genuinely included a decapitated model. The meaning may be less apparently socially or politically motivated (or not as the case maybe), at least it but the approach is the same. I would love to see lots more of this kind of subversive activity!

I found the images on CMMNEWS Check out The Decapitators culture jamming on his Flickr account. Here are a few examples, a mix of subverted ads and their original formats.

UPDATE: Since writting this entry I also came across the work of Saatchi & Someone a culture jammer that created some very interesting and political billboard subversions.

There is also more info on how to go about hijacking billboards in this article on Urban75

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

One Legged Salsa

This guy gets my award! This guy does with one leg, what most people couldn't do with too. Kind of put's Rolf Harris' Jake The Peg, with the extra leg to shame.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Embroidered Graffiti Sofa

Artist Richard Saja hijacks existing traditional fabric prints with his own rebelious emroidered graffiti. I like the idea of furniture becoming an actual work of art. The writters of the post which I first saw this on even suggest that you could even have a go yourself at adding your own embroidered graffiti on the item. I really like this idea, but starting with a blank canvas and treating the sofa as a kind of sketch book.

Found here

Monday, January 14, 2008

Be A Fashionable Victim, Not A Fashion Victim

When you are packing a weapon, you want it to look stylish, no? No longer concerned with the technical specifications, the thing that is going to sway my decission when buying a 'personal saftey device' is how fashionable I will look when I pull it from my bag and defend myself from attack. I may be their next victim, but would hate for any mugger to think that I was a fashion victim. That's why I will be carrying a Tazer MPH, with its sexy leopard skin print. Not only that, but when I am not busy fending off an attacker the weapon does not need to languish in my bag...oh no! It sports an MP3 player, so I can listen to all my favorite tracks while I travel in fear. Heck, just thought, if I am listening to my Tazer as I walk my dangerous route home, maybe I won't hear my attacker approach? Hummnn. As I Taze them, will the MP3 player still work??? I am going to have to get these questions answered. Stay tuned.

Valentino Spring Summer 2008 Campaign - No Faces

I really like the idea of Valentino's latest campaign, his last for the company before his retirement. Rebelling against the saturation of top models and celebrity endorsements, the model's faces in the campaign are all obscured by their hair, or accessories. Will surely be discussed amongst the fashion press, and creates an image that makes you do a double take, without compromising on the traditional 'fashion' image.

More here...

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Psycological Warfare and Sexual Propanda

I saw this very interesting documentary last week on psycological warfare in the Second World War. Charting the reciprocal steps that both sides took in an attempt to out do the other, in order to undermine confidence and seed doubts in the minds of their opponents soldiers.

Both sides used combinations of propaganda that combined erotic images mixed with moral sapping messages about death or ones that cast doubt over the loyalty of wives and girlfriends left back home. The results were haunting and powerful examples of a new type of communication material. Due to thier pornogrpahic nature soldiers would keep the images, and pass them around, despite their darkly masked messages, and became one of the first examples of 'viral communication'. The British used similar propaganda techniques with their own soldiers for spreading information, claiming it to be more effective than the BBC at getting a message across.

Entire departments were set up to investigate and develop pornographic propaganda, and as the war progressed, it is clear to see the evolution from hand painted pictures to more explicit photographs, and ever more disturbing and dark messages.

The British set up a fake German radio station that titilated the German soldiers. It became an institution to which they would tune in religiously, hooked on it's upreviously unseen explicit content. The British would then slip in doubt enducing and depressing news, such as recalling all of the dead families killed in the most recent bombing raids on Berlin.

The images employed all sorts of sophisticated tricks, such as holding the image up to the light revealed a new darker message. In strict stiff upper lip seriousness, one British artist was asked to doctor an image of Hitler, to make him appear as if he were holding his penis. No doubt such an image would have appeared in everyones inboxes. What is funny is to think that such an image was commisioned as a military tactic - does this department still exist and are they responsible for the many videos of Bush and Bin Ladden that flood the web today? Much of the activity is likely a precursor to advertising strategies and certainly adhears to the old adage that sex sells!

Much of the documentary seems to have been based on, or at least included much of the content featured in this site. Well worth checking out!

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

3D Desktop

This guys 'home' experiment using a Wii remote to create a 3D 'desktop' interface has to be seen. By fixing the receiver to his head and using the Wii remote as a motion sensor his computer program is able to locate the position and angle of vision of the user, and then dynamically adust the content on the screen. As the user changes their angle of vision, objects on the screen move accordingly. This is something we will no doubt see very soon in games, and maybe interface design. The effect is so amazing, yet so easy to achieve. See more amazing projects from Johnny Chung Lee at his website.