This blog is now rarely updated, but remains as an archive of bits and pieces I've collected from around the internet. To see what's caught my eye more recently, find me on twitter.

Wednesday, 30 June 2010

#l; Big Bird

Tomorrow I start work on the research project that is part of my Biology degree at Oxford. I'm looking at some videos taken by attaching small cameras on the back of pigeons, so we can learn some stuff about navigation and behaviour. My initial hopes that the videos would be something a bit like Meerkat Manor, or Big Cat Diaries, are starting to wane...

However, as I start my birdy studies, what better time for me to find this. A scientific approach to what exactly Big Bird is:

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

#k; SMART

At school we had these smart boards. They definitely weren't as magical and great as this little video, but they did make watching films in those lessons when the teacher didn't want to teach quite good.

#15,j; Batman

I saw this collection of the "best Batman panels" ever. This is my fave:

It has reminded me that I still haven't finished this: Last summer I started a large 3 panel drawing/painting to replace an even older painting that is on my bedroom wall. Here it is as it is and has been for the last year. This summer, I'll finish it off. Woman on left, then superman (in pencil atm, so probably not visible), Batman, supergirl, hulk: Can't remember where the images came from now - I assume some are copied from books, some are original. Anyway, one day I'll finish it:

Saturday, 26 June 2010

#14,j; Road signs just for me, The Man, and underwater photography

14:
I like it when the council are considerate, and make special signs for areas that I like to park in, so that everyone knows that it's ok for me to not have a permit. Everyone else, if you park, leave and try to come back within 2 hours without a permit, I will tell on you.

j:
Two things today.
I went to a talk from a couple guys from fallon the other day. It was great. I was nosing around their website today and found this french connection ad:

I'm putting it here because I think it's great. Filmed brilliantly, entertaining, and gets across a clear message about the brand. Big fan.

These photos are just quite cool:

Friday, 25 June 2010

#i; Leap, Cats, and Potholes

Exams over. This is great news.

In my post-exam celebratory relaxation period I still haven't got stuck into making anything to fill this daily blog with, but that will come soon. Honest. Instead, there are a few things I've stumbled across today that have caught my eye.

First, Pothole Gardens. I have a huge love of anything that seeks to make the world around us a slightly nicer place. That's my love of a lot of simple street art, and I think this is inventive and nice. Find a pothole, make it flowery. Simple:

I do see the potential problem that these will just get run over and become brown shmushes on the road, but until then, I think this is the sort of thing my Grandma would've liked, and that's good enough for me. Reminds me of this inventive use of potholes in a village in Germany - allow them to be used for advertising: solve a genuine problem and provide outdoor advertising space. Win-Win. I can't find the link now, but a while ago a group (I want to say ImprovEverwhere, but I can't remember. Regardless, check out that link RIGHT NOW. So much fun is had) Also of these brilliantly painted drain covers (among many others, too), these manhole covers in Japan, and this sort of creative site-specific advertising:

As I wander off on this tangent of things I'm being reminded of, that last photo reminds me of this modified streelamp:
I absolutely love this sort of inventive advertising. I don't know the statistics about how effecting this sort of thing is (but would LOVE to know if it works), but it seems to me that, while the standard posters, TV ads etc etc are valuable and great, and have huge potential for inventiveness, originality, and efficient selling of a product or service, a unique and entertaining approach like this draws attention, and I think builds a positive image for a brand. If I see this sort of thing, I think that I then associate it with original thought, an attention to detail, and personality. That may just be me, but I think they're great.


Moving very swiftly onto something else that I like. A short sci-fi film - Leap:
Leap from Dan Gaud on Vimeo.



I like it, except for the very last line. I'm assuming that you have now watched the film, so I'm not ruining it for you. I thought the last bit of the last line makes a corny mess of what was a fairly engaging and interesting film. The film takes a clever idea, executes it in a way that definitely keeps the viewer intrigued, and then in an instant changes the whole character and final impression, with a lazy, corny line and an overly dramatic music climax. I think my main complaint is that it's cheap. If the narrator didn't say "and maybe, to save myself", and left it at "I'm going back to find that girl - to save that girl", then it would end in a way that leads off nicely, makes us want more, and suggests a worthwhile plot and interesting future events. The final line, for me, sucked away the promise of exciting future events, and made me feel like I was watching any old clich├ęd shitty film. This may just be me. I really did like the rest, though, and particularly interesting is the "breakdown" video here, although while this is interesting, I would, as someone who has no understanding or knowledge of the techniques used, really like a bit of explanation. Maybe the creator could narrate over the compilation, and explain how the transitions were made.

Finally for today, this made me laugh.

phew. long.

Thursday, 24 June 2010

#h; Pacman + van

1 (very, very bad) exam down, 1 to go.

2 things for you on this fine sunny morning.

Firstly, the bloke what made pacman has revealed some of his preliminary sketches from when he made the game, a billion years ago. I love the development of ideas, and its great to see how this insanely famous and iconic thing started out as a few sketches on paper.

Also, just a quick link to some great vans. Love the style. That is all.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

#g; 1977

First exam today. Fun times.

I wish it was 1977, and I was selling modern day computers. I like these - nice ad style, and quite funny:

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

#f; Toy Wire

3 days left, then I'm free.

Until then, if you're a fan of The Wire, and of Toy Story, you might get a kick out of this. If you don't like either, you probably won't.

#e; Sketchbook project and live map

Exams nearly here. Revision nearly over. Boredom nearly cured.

No images today, but 2 links I've found that seem like great things to me.

Firstly, a live-updated London Tube Map. I just think it's cool.

Secondly, I love this sort of thing: The Sketchbook Project. I love things that get a wide group of people involved. It encourages people to create and do things pretty much just for fun. More of this in the world, please.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

#14; bike painting

Still in the library from 8am to 11pm at the moment, so an old photo for today.

Bought a kids' bike at a car boot sale for a fiver and painted it last summer. It was originally a bit beat up, and a black colour. I've lost the original photo unfortunately, but here is how it ended up - simple, but I thought it was quite nice.
Sold it for £20 to someone on Gumtree - if I did 1 million of these I'd be pretty rich.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

#d; Console Font

aaaarrrrggggg exam revision --> no time.


Since I don't have time to make something great, why not enjoy this great console font that someone else made...:



Thursday, 17 June 2010

#c; 1 Question

Back to posting links/videos since I don't have time to do real things...

This video is interesting. First, watch this:

Fifty People, One Question: London from Fifty People, One Question on Vimeo.


Now decide what you think. By far the most interesting thing about this video, is the responses. Look over the comment thread below the video at http://madebyon.com/fifty-londoners-one-question/

Opinion seems to fall, very broadly, in one of two schools: Either, "this film is great. Such a probing question -emotional, and moving" or, "this film is a bit ridiculous. It is over-done and self important; its question isn't really all that poignant or emotional, and this question really isn't going to change the world or people's lives."

There are clearly many people who have watched this and felt very moved and touched - there's several people who have been brought to tears. When I watched it, I admit I definitely responded to the film in some way. But, on considering it, I think I'd fall closer to the sceptical opinion of this. For me, this video is much more a great example of how good editing, nice photography and careful music choice can afford an average video the illusion of quality. I would be interested to see the same video filmed on a video phone and editing with less leading emotionality. In a sense, I wonder if this is the equivalent of using incredible CGI in a blockbuster film with no real substance - after about 30 minutes of robots fighting you need a bit more, but will happily enjoy the spectacle for a while.

I'm not at all attacking this video - I genuinely enjoyed it, and it is quite powerful. However, I think it works as a great illustration of just how powerful the potential of video is. The right medium, used cleverly, can work wonders. 

Once these exams are over, I'm definitely gonna learn me some video editing...

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

#13; Denial

I find it sad when I see inanimate objects in denial.

Monday, 14 June 2010

#b; lego

In keeping with the theme of sharing things from the internet while I'm obligated to do "real work", I thought I'd post these. I did not make these. I just think they're great.

Classic photos recreated.... in lego: http://www.flickr.com/photos/balakov/sets/72157602602191858/detail/


On a very similar note - 1996... in lego. I love this shit.
I'm not sure how to embed this video, so just follow the link to the Guardian website. It's great.

Saturday, 12 June 2010

#a; Paper Mario

Another day with no time to get off revision. That said, I'm quite determined to keep posting something so on days like this I'm going to try to post a link to something I've stumbled across on the internet that I think is great. Today, brilliant little stop-motion super mario, with what I think is post-it notes.

 I did not make this. I just think it's great.


(As always, my twitter is essentially a stream of links like this that I think are cool. If you like this, check that out tooo)

Friday, 11 June 2010

#12; Wheel

With exams coming up in a little over a week I'm struggling for time to get these done, so until the end of the week after next this won't be quite every day. Today is one of those days where revision and other things didn't give me time to make something. Instead, here's just a quick something that strikes me every time I see the London Eye (photo stolen from the internet somewhere):
Every time I see the Millenium Wheel I feel sorry for the giant, who's out there somewhere, whose bicycle now only has one wheel.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

#11; Hiraffe










One day, when I make an alphabet of animals, giraffes will be "h". Snakes may have to make up pretty much every other animal.

Today's disclaimer: This isn't meant to look quite so much like weird French flag giraffe propaganda. 

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

#10; Fire

The descriptions didn't match the illustrations before. Now they do.

Usual Disclaimer: In a super-mad rush today so excuse the even-worse-than-usual sloppiness. 

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

#9; Cage

It's not easy being small...

Monday, 7 June 2010

#8; smiles all round

Trying to find ways to perk up essays. Smiley face makes bird neurology a bit more digestible.
(please ignore the actual words - this isn't here so you can critique an essay I wrote last year!)

Sunday, 6 June 2010

#7; rubbish monster

Friday, 4 June 2010

#6; bird


Ok, so this one is actually from a while ago, but so what. hush. It's a nice little bird.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

#5; Do Not Take If...



This is the packet that yesterday's pills came out of. I'm starting to think I shouldn't trust these tablets...

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

#4; Magic Pills


These came out of my pack of Nurofen. I'm not sure I trust them.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

#3; Dance With Care


There should be more dancing in the streets.


Quick disclaimer: This blog is much more about ideas than execution; Each day I'm going to spend no more than 30 minutes on any of the images, so forgive the imperfections in the photoshopping, and go and dance, instead.