Thursday, 31 January 2013

Paperman

I've not posted a soppy love story for a while, so let's address that.

Introducing a groundbreaking technique that seamlessly merges computer-generated and hand-drawn animation techniques, first-time director John Kahrs takes the art of animation in a bold new direction with the Oscar®-nominated short, "Paperman." Using a minimalist black-and-white style, the short follows the story of a lonely young man in mid-century New York City, whose destiny takes an unexpected turn after a chance meeting with a beautiful woman on his morning commute. Convinced the girl of his dreams is gone forever, he gets a second chance when he spots her in a skyscraper window across the avenue from his office. With only his heart, imagination and a stack of papers to get her attention, his efforts are no match for what the fates have in store for him. Created by a small, innovative team working at Walt Disney Animation Studios, "Paperman" pushes the animation medium in an exciting new direction.

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Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Snow Time

I love that Michael Black has to keep rescuing his clock in this time-lapse he made of his back yard in a snow storm. As some commenter wrote..."An amazing story of one clocks will to survive!". Captured in December 2010, on a Canon DLSR on tripod with remote timer taking a photo once every five minutes. Approximately 20 hours in 40 seconds.


December 2010 Blizzard Timelapse from Michael Black on Vimeo.
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Monday, 28 January 2013

Drama On The Square 2

Do you remember this post? Well TNT have decided to up the stakes now. I'm not sure that this would convince me to watch their channel or to curl in to the foetus position and sob quietly, but it sure looks good from the outside.


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Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Recovering My Religion

This is both amazing and a little bit freaky. There are plenty of songs that owe their very identity to the feel and mood they convey. Using a minor scale is a classic way of giving a melancholy tone to a song. Songs like Creep by Radiohead just wouldn't be same if they were upbeat would they? Well Vimeo user majorscaledtv has been finding out.

This is Losing My Religion by REM. Using some very clever software, they have altered all the minor notes that it is famous for and up-scaled them to major ones. Whilst the song is recognisable, it sounds very different. Have a look at some of their other work. A huge "thank you" to Al for passing this on.


Major Scaled #2 : REM - "Recovering My Religion" from major scaled on Vimeo.
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Animated Chess

This is a superb claymation of a game of chess. Apparently it is based on a real game that took place in 1910, however the last few moves were featured in one of my all time favourite films - "2001: A Space Odyssey" for the game between Frank Poole and the HAL-9000 computer. It reminds me a little of Battle Chess. Anyone remember that?


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Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Take A Photo

I'm seriously contemplating trying this for myself although I'm a little worried as to how long the camera would last. It seems like a nice idea and it would interesting to see the results you would get.


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Monday, 21 January 2013

In Pursuit Of Perfection

It seems to me that most adverts on TV are not aimed at the enthusiast. They don't tend to give you any real details when it comes to the car, phone, TV, camera etc that they pushing. It must be that vagueness sells more than specifics, I don't know. Anyway the following advert from Canon is not better in that regard but at least an enthusiast can sympathise. Any photography fan will recognise the pain we are prepared to endure in order to get that perfect shot.


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Reverse Graffiti

Reverse graffiti artist Moose makes a big statement about clean in San Francisco's Broadway Tunnel. Shot by documentary maker Doug Pray. For more information visit www.reversegraffitiproject.com


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Sunday, 20 January 2013

Sandbox Ocean

I'm sorry this is yet another video that has caught my attention but I know very little about it. I hope you enjoy it anyway. I'm sure I could happily play with this for hours.


Sandbox Ocean from ADAA Gallery on Vimeo.
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Friday, 18 January 2013

The Longest Way

In 2008, Christoph Rehage walked through China. It took him one year to travel more than 4500km. All the while, he let his hair and beard grow. This is the resulting video. I love this on so many levels.


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Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Four Handed Guitar

There's not much that I can say about this except that although it would be nice if they could afford a guitar each, it couldn't sound any better. Just sit back and enjoy.


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Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Help Wanted

Looking for a new career direction? Enjoy travel? I think I have the very thing for you. A non-profit organisation called Mars One, based in The Netherlands, intends to establish a human settlement on Mars in 2023 and they need astronauts. They have now released their application criteria. Among other virtues, astronaut candidates must have “a deep sense of purpose, willingness to build and maintain healthy relationships, the capacity for self-reflection and ability to trust. They must be resilient, adaptable, curious, creative and resourceful.” Take a look at the selection process.

Basically it seems to be the mother of all reality shows. The only drawback? It is a one-way trip.


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Monday, 14 January 2013

Helium & Bubble Gum

Sadly I can't find out anything about this but it is superbly done. I wish it was real as I'd be out there giving it a go. Enjoy!


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Sunday, 13 January 2013

IllumiRoom

This is a rather cool proof-of-concept Microsoft Research project designed to push the boundary of living room immersive entertainment by blending virtual and physical worlds with projected visualisations. The effects in the video are rendered in real time and are captured live -- not special effects added in post processing.


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Friday, 11 January 2013

Camera Test

If you're planning to spend a substantial amount of money on anything, it is always wise to check out user reviews to see what others thought in hindsight. However such reviews aren't always helpful; they don't always give you the information you need. sure they quote specifications, but do they really go in to the sort of detail you need to know? I'm not in the market for a video camera, but if I was, I'd find this review perfect.

Jonathan Yi took a pre-production model of the Canon EOS C300 out for a test spin and he tried something a bit different. Apparently Canon were not thrilled with his sense of humour, but I think he sells it hands down for them.


Canon EOS C300 = Awesome from Jonathan Yi on Vimeo.
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Thursday, 10 January 2013

An Heroic Tale

Router
Router (Photo credit: Antonio Nicolás Pina)
I thoroughly enjoyed this short story by Mike Lacher. Written as a tale from long ago, I hope you enjoy this as much as I did. A tale..."In Which I Fix My Girlfriend’s Grandparents’ WiFi and Am Hailed as a Conquering Hero".

Lo, in the twilight days of the second year of the second decade of the third millennium did a great darkness descend over the wireless internet connectivity of the people of 276 Ferndale Street in the North-Central lands of Iowa. For many years, the gentlefolk of these lands basked in a wireless network overflowing with speed and ample internet, flowing like a river into their Compaq Presario. Many happy days did the people spend checking Hotmail and reading USAToday.com.

But then one gray morning did Internet Explorer 6 no longer load The Google. Refresh was clicked, again and again, but still did Internet Explorer 6 not load The Google. Perhaps The Google was broken, the people thought, but then The Yahoo too did not load. Nor did Hotmail. Nor USAToday.com. The land was thrown into panic. Internet Explorer 6 was minimized then maximized. The Compaq Presario was unplugged then plugged back in. The old mouse was brought out and plugged in beside the new mouse. Still, The Google did not load.

Some in the kingdom thought the cause of the darkness must be the Router. Little was known of the Router, legend told it had been installed behind the recliner long ago by a shadowy organization known as Comcast. Others in the kingdom believed it was brought by a distant cousin many feasts ago. Concluding the trouble must lie deep within the microchips, the people of 276 Ferndale Street did despair and resign themselves to defeat.

But with the dawn of the feast of Christmas did a beacon of hope manifest itself upon the inky horizon. Riding in upon a teal Ford Focus came a great warrior, a suitor of the gentlefolks’ granddaughter. Word had spread through the kingdom that this warrior worked with computers and perhaps even knew the true nature of the Router.

The people did beseech the warrior to aid them. They were a simple people, capable only of rewarding him with gratitude and a larger-than-normal serving of Jell-O salad. The warrior considered the possible battles before him. While others may have shirked the duties, forcing the good people of Ferndale Street to prostrate themselves before the tyrants of Comcast, Linksys, and Geek Squad, the warrior could not chill his heart to these depths. He accepted the quest and strode bravely across the beige shag carpet of the living room.

Deep, deep behind the recliner did the warrior crawl, over great mountains of National Geographic magazines and deep chasms of TV Guides. At last he reached a gnarled thicket of cords, a terrifying knot of grey and white and black and blue threatening to ensnare all who ventured further. The warrior charged ahead. Weaker men would have lost their minds in the madness: telephone cords plugged into Ethernet jacks, AC adapters plugged into phone jacks, a lone VGA cable wrapped in a firm knot around an Ethernet cord. But the warrior bested the thicket, ripping away the vestigial cords and swiftly untangling the deadly trap.

And at last the warrior arrived at the Router. It was a dusty black box with an array of shimmering green lights, blinking on and off, as if to taunt him to come any further. The warrior swiftly manoeuvred to the rear of the router and verified what he had feared, what he had heard whispered in his ear from spirits beyond: all the cords were securely in place.

The warrior closed his eyes, summoning the power of his ancestors, long departed but watchful still. And then with the echoing beep of his digital watch, he moved with deadly speed, wrapping his battle-hardened hands around the power cord at the back of the Router.

Gripping it tightly, he pulled with all his force, dislodging the cord from the Router. The heavens roared. The earth wailed. The green lights turned off. Silently the warrior counted. One. Two. Three. And just as swiftly, the warrior plugged the cord back into the router. Great crashes of blood-red lightning boomed overhead. Murders of crows blackened the skies. The Power light came on solid green. The seas rolled. The WLAN light blinked on. The forests ignited. A dark fog rolled over the land and suddenly all was silent. The warrior stared at the Internet light, waiting, waiting. And then, as the world around him seemed all but dead, the Internet light began to blink.

The warrior darted out back over the mountains of National Geographic magazines and made haste to the Compaq Presario. He woke up Windows XP from sleep mode and deftly defeated twelve notifications to update Norton AntiVirus. With a resounding click he opened Internet Explorer 6 and gazed deep into its depths, past the Yahoo toolbar, the MSN toolbar, the Ask.com toolbar, and the AOL toolbar. And then did he see, at long last, that The Google did load.

And so the good people of the kingdom were delighted and did heap laurels and Jell-O salad at the warrior’s feet, for now again they could have their Hotmail as the wireless internet did flow freely to their Compaq Presario. The warrior ate his Jell-O salad, thanked the gentlefolk, and then went to the basement because the TiVo was doing something weird with the VCR.
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Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Trombone Cam

You don't need to make a very complicated video for it to go viral. This is David Finlayson, the second trombonist for the New York Philharmonic. Clearly looking to amuse himself, he attached a GoPro camera to his instrument. It is strangely hypnotic and has certainly proved popular.


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Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Tibetan Calligrapher

I find it very difficult to explain why but I find every aspect of the work of Tashi Mannox truly beautiful. From an artistic point of view it is simply exquisite. I makes me want to have a go but I'm sure it would just look my usual handwriting. :-)


Tashi Mannox - Tibetan Calligrapher from Planetary Collective on Vimeo.
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Monday, 7 January 2013

Friday, 4 January 2013

Bliss

I don't know which photograph is considered to be the most famous, but I am pretty sure that the one that was used for the default wallpaper in Windows XP, should be considered a candidate. It is called "Bliss" and was captured by professional photographer Charles O'Rear for digital-design company HighTurn.


The photograph depicts a landscape near Napa, California and contains rolling green hills and a blue sky with cumulus and cirrus clouds and according to O'Rear, it was not digitally enhanced or manipulated in any way. Due to a non-disclosure agreement, we don't know how much Microsoft paid O'Rear for the full ownership of the rights. But I can't help thinking that it wouldn't be as much if it was taken today. :-)


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Thursday, 3 January 2013

Yann Frisch

He may look like a hobo but there his no doubting his sleight of hand skills. Yann Frisch is actually an award-winning illusionist. Enjoy this routine that he has honed to perfection.


The Best Sleight-Of-Hand You - Watch More Funny Videos
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Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Auld Lang Syne

I really meant to post this yesterday but due to some severe partying the night before, very little got done yesterday. So a belated "Happy New Year" to all my readers. Here's the incomparable Jimi Hendrix with his version of Auld Lang Syne.


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