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AMAZING PHOTOS: Celebrities hangin’ with their vinyl

29 Jun

I stumbled upon a blog post entitled “Famous people hanging out with their vinyl” on Boing Boing and I just had to share its awesomeness with you all.

Here’s a selection of my favourites, but you should click the links above to see all of the photos.

Each one is brilliant.

Audrey Hepburn

Adorable. I want to be this picture.

Bjork

My lady love. Lovelovelove. And Jazzmatazz!

Sophia Loren

Stunning.

Marilyn Monroe

God that’s sexy.

John Lennon

I love John Lennon and everything he left behind.

Marlon Brando

Great photo. AND he was born on my birthday!

Jack Nicholson

What a perv! Not that I expected anything less.

Erykah Badu

Epically cool.

Madlib

Massive chaos; a true artist’s lair.

Chewbacca

Rofl!

LCat

I know, I know, I’m not a celebrity, but I couldn’t resist. Also, ’twas a good opportunity to promote The Black Keys’ latest album Brothers. It is an excellent, excellent album. Buy it — for the love of music!

All photos courtesy of www.dangerousminds.net, except the last photo by me.

DIY TILL YOU DIE: Vancouver Mini Maker Faire

24 Jun

I love performance and technology, particularly when they intersect with fashion and design.

Luckily, I’m not alone…

Because Vancouver’s first Mini Maker Faire is happening this weekend!

From 10 am to 5 pm on June 25 and 26, Great Northern Way Campus will be turned into a veritable feast for the eyes, ears and hands of novelty-hungry Vancouverites. For the first time ever in our fair city, we will be able to interact with a community of local crafters, builders, tinkerers, engineers and hobbyists who will gather to show off their skills and enthusiasm under the umbrella term of “Maker.”

Vancouver Mini Maker Faire (VMMF) is a two-day celebration of making and creating. It’s an all-ages family festival promoting the ethos of DIY on a large scale. Some of the features include pyrotechnics, kinetic sculptures, interactive musical installations, and 3d printers that can print themselves.

Interactive booths stationed throughout will both educate and entertain: teaching people how to complete a circuit, spin wool, or even smoke bacon!

Awesome.

Something really cute and creative that’s been garnering a lot of attention in on blogs and such these past few weeks is yarnbombing (aka yarnstorming or yarngraffiting), whereby a group of knit-savvy crafters gather together to shroud a public space in cozy, knitted coverings.

One such group, led by VMMF organizer Emily Smith, yarnbombed the Dunsmuir bike lanes the weekend of June 11 to promote the faire, and the results couldn’t have been more charming.

I love it!

Check out the VMMF blog for more info.

Something else I plan to take in is a talk by Vincent van Haaff, who will be discussing what music, video/installation art, hackspaces, and the maker movement all have in common. Van Haaff will explore the parallels between connecting software libraries and hardware, and connecting people and communities, taking into account how these points can benefit and accelerate every piece involved.

Originally from Southern California, van Haaff went from a record label co-founder and audio hacker in Los Angeles, to a rock climbing/chard-growing hippie in Santa Barbara, before moving to Vancouver to become a video game software developer and media artist. His expertise spans from data and music visualization to computer vision and user-centred design.

Definitely someone I want to learn more about.

Read more about Vancouver Mini Maker Faire in the Vancouver Courier and the Georgia Straight, and listen in on CBC Radio.

To pique your interest even more, I’ll leave you with one of my favourite music vids by Bjork, which I think really captures the Maker mindset:

See you all at the Faire!

First photo courtesy of xyberlog.com. Yarnbombing photos courtesy the VMMF blog.

XMAS PRESENT (TENSE): A handbag fit for a digital queen

21 Dec

This dorkus-malorkus computer key bag is so up my alley.

Made by Joao Sabino, an industrial designer in Portugal, “The Keybag” is made from exactly 393 keys from computer keyboards.

Lined with black nylon and available in four colours (see photo below), The Keybag is the perfect accessory with which to ring in the new year.

It also reminds me of Super Mario Bros. with all its blockiness.

Since I have a typing impediment — I type with left hand on 1/3 of the keyboard and right hand on 2/3, and I never use the pinkies: for decoration ONLY — this bag would be the perfect training apparatus.

And just think of the jokes I could throw down!“Oh, sorry, you’re just not my… type.”

“Learning is… key!”

“I’m really… board of your instant messages.”

“#$@^%&!”

“Print screen!”

:>

So, mom, dad, stepdad, if you’re reading this, The Keybag will set you back €130.00, or $253.00 CAD including shipping. Don’t worry that it won’t arrive in time for Christmas. I can wait.

Buy it here. And check out Joao Sabino’s blog here.

(And this is how it would look before my stuff got put inside…)

I first caught wind of The Keybag through a mention on Kingdom of Style (my fave fashion blog), and I’ve since been reading up on it.

Unfortunately, I haven’t found any evidence to suggest it’s made from recycled keyboards, which would make it ever the more awesome.

The Keybag reminds me of the 2006 documentary Manufactured Landscapes about Edward Burtynsky, an incredible Canadian photographer who travels the world shooting breathtaking landscapes changed from manufacturing and industry.

Directed by Jennifer Baichwal, part of the film follows people in China that live among piles and piles of “e-waste” (or computer waste). They pick through bits and chunks of broken computer parts, chemicals and wires searching for valuable pieces they can sell to avoid starving.

Apparently 50 per-cent of the world’s computer waste ends up in China. It would be incredibly remarkable for The Keybag to be made of keys from China’s e-wastelands.

Manufactured Landscapes is tragic and berating and stunningly filmed. If you’ve never seen it, you really should. It’s pretty unforgettable. At the very least, watch Edward Burtynsky’s TED talk on the subject.

In the meantime, anyone seen my… keys?

Ahhh!

Photos courtesy of kingdomofstyle.typepad.co.uk, designboom.com and workshop.iyms.info.

CHEAP GIFT IDEA: “A lifetime of music” mix CD

9 Dec

My roommate and I are making each other mix CDs for X-mas.

We both love music, so the intention behind it is to create a mix that represents a lifetime of musical influences. A lofty task we know, but we are up for the challenge!

We’re also hoping that since we are five years apart in age, there will be a substantial amount of music on there that’s new to each of us.

I just started my mix tonight, and I just informed her it has to be a double disc.

Mine’s gonna be a mix of stuff I’ve liked since I was a super cool teen, a slovenly university kid, and a mid-twenties scoffer. I’m also adding stuff I’ve just discovered today.

I’m thinking that I havehavehave to be able to stand behind each and every song that’s on there. I cannot put something on my mix simply because I used to like it a lot. No room for Korn, or any of that crap.

It has to represent who I am, and how I’ve evolved… musically. And I’m not repeating any artists. Maybe I’ll even post the tracklist once I’m done! (Sheepish grin.)

Ahh, I’m getting overwhelmed just writing about it.

And god it’s embarrassing going through some of the old stuff I used to listen to. Like THIS Cassius track me and my friend and I used to rock through her really loud car speakers while driving around trying to be hot in high school:

Actually, I still stand behind this. It’s goin’ on there.

😉

Photo courtesy of blog.freepeople.com

INSPIRED AND DISALLUSIONED: 7.5-hour movie experience

5 Dec

A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of witnessing American visual artist and filmmaker Matthew Barney‘s epic Cremaster Cycle — a project consisting of five feature-length films made over an eight-year period (1994-2002).

Screening at Pacific Cinémathèque for the first time in Vancouver in five years, these films were named for the male muscle that raises and lowers the testes in response to external stimuli.

(Hm!)

I freely admit to having a hard time putting my thoughts on The Cremaster Cycle into words. It was the most all-encompassing, sensory, confusing, overwhelming, inspiring and deflating film-going experience ever.

And it lasted for 7.5 hours.

There, I guess that about does it.

Don’t get me wrong, it was worth the effort it took to sit still for  that long. I particularly liked Cremaster 2. The costumes oozed high fashion and the deep organ music composed by Jonthan Bepler only enhanced the experience.

One can see elements of Stanley Kubrick, David Lynch and David Cronenberg in Barney’s haunting, dream-like masculine style.

Oh, and Barney is married to Björk. How awe-inspiring is that? (Love, love that adorable Icelandic divinity.)

Cremaster 2 is a hazy blend of striking scenes that don’t quite connect. We witness a strange, mechanical sex scene in which male and female torsos do it amidst a swarm of bees; the unfolding of the story of American murderer Gary Gilmore (played by Barney himself); an appearance by novelist Norman Mailer who plays Harri Houdini; an amazing aerial view of  a couple of Canadian Mounties backed by the organ-grinding Mormon Tabernacle Choir; cowboy line dancing; and a scene with two famous death metal musicians playing embodiments of Johnny Cash (with, again, a swarm of bees).

Woah.

And check the guy on the bottom right. Cute right? Ya, he dies.

According to Barney’s website, the life of bees is meant to “metaphorically describe the potential of moving backward in order to escape one’s destiny.

Ooooooooooh.

Wait, bees can do that? How d’you mean, exactly? I tried to research this and got distracted because I have no idea what this means.

Moving along, there’s also this gorgeous sculpture of a mirrored saddle! Amazing.

Suffice it to say, Barney’s interpretation of the facts of nature made me feel like I don’t know anything about anything.

(Read: It’s exhausting being deep when you can’t even comprehend the bottom.)

According to Wikipedia, the full series was released in a limited series of 20 sets of DVDs, each sold for at least $100,000. They are screened mainly as gallery exhibits and will never be made available on mass-market DVD.

I feel cool now that I’ve seen them all. (I sat there for 7.5 hours, you guys. This is dedication to being cool!)

Anyone seen The Cremaster Cycle? What did you think? I need input to strengthen my critique.

All photos courtesy of cremaster.net