Thursday, November 29, 2007
The holiday season works a little differently here in the Netherlands, with Sinterklaas arriving on December 5th, well in advance of Baby Jesus.
Fortunately there's the internet (or, more accurately the World Wide Web) to deliver properly-scheduled holiday cheer. Once you sift through all the crap about Black Friday, Mauve Monday, Taupe Tuesday or whatever fictitious days the media has fabricated to sell column inches, there is a treasure trove of sights and sounds on the web that show how, despite the endless marketing blitz, we haven't completely lost the plot.
On a musical note (ba-dum-bum), The Pandora Podcasts have a great piece on the origins and musical structure of many popular Christmas songs. And, if the malls don't saturate your carol capacity, there's heaps of radio stations streaming xmas music 24/7. If you do reach critical mass as quickly as I do but still want to keep the holiday spirit then there's NPR's roots-music Christmas from the World Cafe show from 2005 plus a whole lot more!
There's great art kicking around, with loads of vintage royalty-free (though not free-free) stuff to see, as well as contemporary royalty-free (and free-free with an account) at Getty.
So regardless of where you hang your kerchief or cap before settling down for a long winter's nap there should be something out there to spark that merry feeling.
P.S. if you happen to be in Portland on December 15th you can catch the Tuba Christmas Concert apparently.
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
I've been following Yuka Yamaguchi's blog, Plastique Monkey, for a while now, which I discovered totally at random googling something like "barley mushroom risotto". Discovering her quirky watercolor and pencil sketches – not to mention the totally adorable photos of her newborn son – has been a real treat. So much so that I printed the above sketch and tacked it to one of the walls of my cube for some visual stimulii.
There's a growing trend for these very interesting sites where you can move parts around and create your own design -- kind of like a dumbed down Photoshop/Illustrator. Poetic Licence is a UK-based shoe manufacturer whose site allows you to create your own ad for their shoes by giving you some logos, photos, words and other elements to play around with. Polyvore is a little more advanced and is an application (available both on its own site and on Facebook) where you can play around with creating your own outfits based on thousands of pre-loaded shots of clothes. The design comes in by creating your own personal dream outfits (or real outfits, I suppose) in a sleek and polished way that resembles the pages of a fashion magazine. Clearly there's major potential here for revenue if the clothes you represent pay money to be on the page; from a more personal standpoint, it affords hours of fun for any girl (or guy) who thrives on the creativity and self-expression that comes from putting clothes and design elements together -- even if they're out of your price range.
I'm kicking myself for missing the boat on posting the brilliant Orangina commercial and print work I was gushing over last week, so that will now be an incentive to get on it a little faster and update this blog the second I see something really cool. Like this amazing design work from Buenos Aires collective DOMA, a bunch of Argentines who started out doing street art and then morphed their talents into a lot of cool design and video work (a lot of the design work in the form of awesome toys).
Friday, November 02, 2007
This site for Orange (the mobile provider in the UK) is one of THE. COOLEST. THINGS. I've seen in a long time. It just made me giddy with excitement for the cool stuff you can do on the internet and made me excited to work in advertising. In keeping with Orange's "good things should never end" strategy, it amplifies this idea in a gorgeous, fun, and shareable way. From a British agency called Poke London.