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Category Archives: Uncategorized

The unseen artistry of London’s road sign painters

Via: The Verge

Walking around London, you’re likely to see the words “bus stop” plastered over the road thousands of times. Given the uniformity of these visual warnings, you’d be forgiven for assuming all the city’s street typography was created using a stencil. You’d be wrong. London-based designer Tom Williams captured a worker painting the road markings a couple of years ago, and the video he uploaded was recently highlighted by Kottke.

The video depicts a pair of workers painting the familiar “bus stop” warning by hand, using only some rough chalk marks to judge the correct size of the letters. Far from a menial task, there’s real artistry required for each sign. Looking closely, you’ll see subtle variations between the letters, and some minor variations in spacing, but that doesn’t take away from the sheer skill of these invisible artists.

bus-stop

Peter Beard: A Wild Life


“Peter Beard” by Derek Peck – NOWNESS from NOWNESS on Vimeo.

Peter Beard: A Wild Life

The Artist and Photographer On His Lifelong Dedication to the Natural World

Peter Beard has been documenting and interpreting Africa’s epic landscapes and indigenous species for nearly six decades. Here he gives a rare insight into his life and practice in this meditative short from director Derek Peck. Shot at Beard’s home in Montauk, Long Island, we find the artist, author and photographer continuing to develop his complex collage practice that brings together found objects, contact sheets, literary quotes and photographs from Tsavo, Kenya, where he made some of his most memorable and affecting work on elephants in the 60s and 70s. “It does the heart good to see what nature has made available to us,” he says in today’s film. “Nature is the best thing we’ve got.” In his delicate, ornate work, his passion for the natural world is evident, and his commitment to the protection of the environment remains unwavering. “Peter is by turns charming and humorous, dark and brooding, and nostalgic,” Peck says of working with Beard. “Every photo in the collage would trigger a stream of thought about his time in Africa, photography, Montauk, and, especially, his concern for, and anger over, the state of the natural world. This subject more than any other has been at the heart of his work over his lifetime.”

The lesson is: Don’t be lazy – when you can be “creatively” lazy

trojancoffee

Via PetaPixel:

Necessity may be the mother of invention, but laziness is definitely its father. Case in point, here’s an interesting tidbit of imaging history: the first webcam ever was actually invented by lazy students at Cambridge University who didn’t want to waste a trip to the nearby coffee pot if it was going to be empty when they got there.

This coffee machine that was the inspiration for the world’s first webcam was located in a corridor just outside The Trojan Room in the old computer lab at Cambridge University. In 1991, too many trips to an empty coffee pot led Dr. Quentin Stafford-Fraser and Paul Jardetzky to invent the world’s first webcam to help late night studiers and programmers keep an eye on coffee levels.

xcoffee

Once switched on, the camera would display a 129×129 pixel grayscale picture of the coffee pot at 1 frame per second on the user’s desktop. Ironically, the “webcam” actually predates the “web” by a couple of years, but as soon as the World Wide Web went up, the service was connected to the internet.

The camera was actually switched off in August of 2001, and all that’s left if you try and pull the feed is a link to the last ever picture the webcam took. The coffee machine itself was auctioned off on eBay for over $5,000 to German magazine Der Spiegel, where it was refurbished and put back to work by Krups.