Monday, December 31, 2018

Winter’s Magic

Ontario-based nature photographer Don Komarechka captures dramatic ice crystals  in his short film “Winter’s Magic.”

Via Colossal

This Artist Sees Colours in Music and Paints Your Favorite Songs

Kansas City artist Melissa McCracken has a rare neurological condition known as chromesthesia that causes her to spontaneously and involuntarily see colours when listening to music. She has harnessed her condition and uses it to create brilliantly colorful paintings.

David Bowie "Life on Mars"
Bach "Cello Suite No. 1"

More: Broadly

Vignettes of a salesman...last of his kind

Willy was a salesman. And for a salesman, there is no rock bottom to the life…
He’s a man way out there in the blue, riding on a smile and a shoeshine.
And when they start not smiling back, that’s and earthquake.
A saleman’s got to dream, boy - it comes with the territory.
- “Death of a Salesman”, 1949 by Arthur Miller.
Norway-based artist  Ole Marius Joergensen's evocative series Vignettes of a Salesman follows a faceless protagonist on a silent, solitary journey.

Via Blort

Tweet Of The Day

Find out more about the paintings here 

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Vintage East End London in glorious colour

A recently discovered photo collection by the late photographer (and life-long East Ender) David Granick reveals London's East End in colour, including streets in Stepney, Whitechapel and Spitalfields. 

The top picture is taken looking south from Aldgate East Station. When we're in London we stay 30 seconds from the station. This is what it looks like now:

Photography by David Granick, courtesy of the Tower Hamlets Local History Library & Archives where the pictures can be seen until 5 May 2018.
More: BBC News

Tweet Of The Day

Music For Sunday Morning

Sunday Links


Jo Hopper, Woman in the Sun

Ringing in the New Year With a Confetti Collector 

Brrrr! Inside the Coldest City in the World, Where It Snows 270 Days a Year Via Miss C

Sounding Nature is the biggest ever global exploration of the beautiful sounds of nature, covering 55 countries with almost 500 sounds. Take a listen.

LocationsHub: I'm not making a film but I enjoyed browsing through these.

How to make your own vermouth from leftover wine 

Johnny Cash’s ‘At Folsom Prison’: An Oral History 

The Shanghai Soup Dumpling Index

The Woman Who Fell To Earth  On Christmas Eve 1971 17-year-old Juliane Koepcke and her mother boarded a plane that was to cross the Peruvian rainforest. The plane was struck by a bolt of lightning. It's an amazing story.

Sorrel: The Ruby-Red Caribbean Christmas Drink Flavored With Black History

A Journey to the Glitter Factory Via PfRC

Ronni Campana Photographs Badly Repaired Cars

Is pork fat healthier than kale? Researchers analyzed raw foods and ranked the ingredients that provide the best balance of your daily nutritional requirements. They found a few surprises.

8 spectacular destinations for intrepid design lovers  Via

Escape Den. is built from four shipping containers arranged at various angles on a steel frame with plant filled terraces on its various levels.

Visualizing the History of Fugazi 

It's all here: Trump Omnibus  Via Memo Of The Air

Jeff Goldblum Has a Number One Jazz Album

In 12 Minutes, Everything Went Wrong How the pilots of Lion Air Flight 610 lost control.

Every Single Food Trend Predicted to Take Over 2019 

For Forbidden City concubines in imperial China, beauty was more of a curse than a blessing

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Tweet Of The Day

Awesome Forklift Trick

Only a very patient smoker would light a cigarette this way.

Via everlasting blort 

Noodle School

Jia Li’s short documentary Noodle School takes us to Lanzhou, a city in northwest China that’s famous for its beef noodle soup, and introduces us to a motley band of students who dream of making it big in the dough business.

Noodle School from Topic on Vimeo.

Friday, December 28, 2018

Octopus Cut From a Single Piece of Paper

Artist Masayo Fukuda has been practicing kirie, the art of Japanese paper cutting, for 25 years. She has revealed what she says is her greatest masterpiece of 2018.

More: Spoon & Tamago

If Fruit Could Move?

A short film by animator Jan Elsner

ÖBST from Jan Elsner on Vimeo.


Slow Seeing

Can a film be consumed at the speed of reading a book? Yes, just as a car city can be enjoyed on foot. Bryan Boyer's VSMP (Very Slow Movie Player) shows a movie not at 24 frames/sec but at 24 frames per hour.

Read more

Via perfect for roquefort cheese

Anatomy of New Year’s

Wrong Hands

A hairdresser created a substance that could withstand 75 nuclear blasts

Maurice Ward invented a fire-resistant plastic called Starlite. When he died in 2011 he took the material’s secrets to his grave.

The Math of the Birthday Paradox

Even though there are 365 days in a year there’s a 50% chance that two people in a group of 23 will share the same birthday.


Plague Fortress

Drone footage  of a naval fortress in Saint Petersburg named after Russian Emperor Alexander I, which has been abandoned for more than 30 years.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Dear Renzo

Two young Argentines wander the streets of New York City, lost in a maze of currency exchange, translation problems, religious vocation and nocturnal flirtation.

Dear Renzo from Agostina Galvez on Vimeo.

Abandoned Border Checkpoints

In his Übergang series Josef Schulz documented abandoned military and national checkpoints across Europe, subtly blurring their backgrounds in post-production to remove them from their original context.

More here 


Zero Waste Daniel

Over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the US each year. Daniel Silverstein aka Zero Waste Daniel turns fabric scraps that were destined to become landfill into unique pieces of clothing.


Photographer Uses A Paper Tube And A Shower Curtain As Light Painting Tools

Photographer Eric Paré got stuck in Chicago for a night after his flight to NYC got canceled. He had no light painting tubes, no dress, no tripods, and no battery chargers but decided to make the best of his situation.

More here 

Hypnotic Stroboscopic Ornaments

"The stroboscopic patterns are designed in MATLAB and drawn by EggBot Pro on colored glass Christmas ornaments. The motion of the balls is controlled by a custom mechanism built using components from two Prusa i3 MK3 3D printers, like six stepper motors and two Rambo boards."

More here 

RK Captures The Beauty of East Asia

Tokyo-based street photographer RK finds inspiration in East Asia.

More here

The Hockey Sweater

As a child, Roch Carrier spent much of his time playing hockey with his friends. Carrier's favourite team? The Montreal Canadiens. But, one winter, his mother ordered him the wrong team's jersey.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Tweet Of The Day

Every Product Made by the Fictional ACME Corporation

The ACME Corporation, featured in the Looney Tunes Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner cartoons,  made every type of product in the Looney Tunes universe, from explosives to refrigerators to trampolines to instructional karate manuals.  Chicago-based artist Rob Loukotka has put them all on one 24-inch by 36-inch poster.

Happy St. Stephen's Day

Or as Canadians call it, Boxing Day.
There'll be laughter and tears over Tia Marias,
Mixed up with that drink made from girders.
Cause it's all we've got left as they draw their last breath,
Ah, it's nice for the kids, as you finally get rid of them,
In the St Stephen's Day Murders.

Leonard Cohen's first-ever musical TV performance! May 23, 1966

Ullasa ratham, the wedding chariots of India

The modified  Fiat Premier-Padmini cars used to transport wedding couples to their receptions are the focus of Indian photographer Sameer Raichur's collection Chariots of Frolic. These vehicles are fabricated using discarded cars sold at scrap prices that are no longer in production by their respective companies. The rear seat is removed to accommodate an elevated platform on which a sofa or chairs are placed for the bride and the groom. The platform has an ornate background referred to locally as a ‘disco’ which is made of papier-mâché decoration around a fiber board housing LED or tungsten bulbs. The lighting is powered by a generator tucked away in the trunk of the car.

1 from Sameer Raichur on Vimeo.

More here



This Florida trailer park is taken over by French-Canadian retirees every winter.

Satisfying Marble Sorting

Magnets, levers, and other contraptions sort the red, blue, and yellow marbles into their correct color containers.


Monday, December 24, 2018

No hope for punk


Mercers’ Maidens

The Mercer Maiden been a symbol for one of the City of London’s oldest livery companies since at least 1425. Her image appears on old buildings as well as modern ones all over London but her origin is unknown.

IanVisits has posted a collection of pictures  and more info on his blog.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Drawn & Recorded: Teen Spirit

The woman who inspired Kurt Cobain to write an anthem for the ages.

Drawn & Recorded: Teen Spirit from Kalakala Animation on Vimeo.

Tweet Of The Day

Music For Sunday Morning

Sunday Links

Paper artist Yuko Nishimura has created an origami Christmas tree at the Andaz Tokyo. 
Tokyo’s Best Designer Christmas Trees of 2018 

10 Christmas Films Made Over 100 Years Ago (That You Can Watch for Free) 

 Random Bits of Fascination offers a plethora of Regency era Christmas treats.

Vintage Hollywood Christmas Pics from the ’20s and 30s 

10 Years Ago Mom Told Son To “Sober Up” And Make His Own Christmas Cards.  So he's been doing it ever since. Via Miss C

Brooklyn Bar Menu Generator Via

It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s a Coffee Maker!  Marvel and DC Comics branded superhero products for the cook.

Why Not This Idea: Dogs Can Talk For 25 Minutes Per Day Via

Bloomberg's Year in Pictures 2018

I love to listen to audiobooks when I'm running. This collection of free books at  Open Culture will provide plenty to listen to while I'm burning off holiday calories in 2019.

How to Make a New York Times Crossword Puzzle

Swimming with Super Grouper  Florida’s reefs and wrecks are once again populated with goliath grouper the size of floating refrigerators. Thanks Bruce!

The Best Bad Restaurant Reviews of 2018:  “There’s V for Vegan. There’s GF for Gluten Free. There’s DF for Dairy Free. I think they’re missing a few. There should be TF for Taste Free and JF for Joy Free and AAHYWEH for Abandon All Hope, Ye Who Enter Here.”

How Zoos Prepare For Natural Disasters  Via

The Story of Dyngo, a War Dog Brought Home From Combat

Best historic photography of 2018

'Reconstructions' -  Photographs and Poems of 'the Troubles' 

Acid House Brexit Protest Record: Acid Brexit is an audio-visual collaboration between Yuri Suzuki, Luke Powell, and Jody Hudson-Powell. (It's not very melodic - but, hey, it's free)

The Dark History Of Showers  In the 19th century, cold rinses and days-long baths became a way to treat—and control—psychiatric patients. Thanks Bruce!

Canada’s Christmas tree in a bottle

Digital detox: Can you take a vacation from your cellphone? A growing number of hotels will help you find out.

The Llamas Are Here! And they're wearing holiday hats!

11 Foods That Tried to Kill You in 2018

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Booby Traps

A booby trap compilation from theflippist 

Via Blort

Hi! My Name Is...

Artist Sara Sandoval does something very cool with a roll of “Hello My Name Is” stickers.


At Home With Amy Sedaris

Some of you may know that I have a girlcrush on Amy Sedaris. She's so adorably madcap and so is her apartment,


Black Sheep

Black Sheep, a film directed by Ed Perkins and produced by Simon and Jonathan Chinn, has been shortlisted in the documentary short subject category for the Oscars.
Everything changed for Cornelius Walker on 27 November 2000 when Damilola Taylor was killed. Damilola was 11, the same age as Cornelius. He lived five minutes away. He had the same skin colour. Cornelius’s mother, scared for her son’s safety, moved their family out of London.

On This Day

Joe Strummer died on this day in 2002. I still miss you dude, even after all this time.

Friday, December 21, 2018

A Damaged Painting Is Restored To Its Original Radiance

Watch art conservator Julian Baumgartner restore a self-portrait by Italian painter Emma Gaggiotti Richards.


O Tannenbaum: When Chemical Element Christmas Trees Were All The Rage

The first aluminum Christmas trees were manufactured in 1958 by Modern Coatings, Inc. and later by the Aluminum Specialty Company in Manitowoc, Wisconsin and sold for $25. My family was slow to jump on that bandwagon but when my mother finally bought one and decorated it with blue ornaments I thought it was the most beautiful Christmas tree I'd ever seen. This photo collection on Don't Take Pictures is the epitome of the mid-century Christmas.

More here 

Macramé Periodic Table of Elements

Jane Stewart created this macramé  periodic table to celebrate the 1869 publication of Dmitri Mendeleev’s periodic table of the elements. If you are willing to risk carpal tunnel syndrome by tying 200,000 tiny knots you can make one too.

Instructions: Make

Gift of the Magi

We were young and broke, but we didn’t care
You had your pocketwatch, I had my golden hair
We were just scraping by, waiting to make it big
I was an ingénue, you were just a kid
But it was Christmas eve, didn’t know what to do
How could I hope to buy some kind of gift for you
Ain’t got no trust fund hon, ain’t got no savings bond
Just got my student loans, the clothes that I’ve got on 
Singer-songwriter Ellia Bisker aka Sweet Soubrette accompanies herself on ukulele in this delightful musical version of O. Henry’s iconic short story, Gift of the Magi 

More: Open Culture

Hollywood's Heyday Preserved In Miniature

In the 1930s  Joe Pellkofer, a cabinetmaker, and a team of craftsmen built a tabletop Hollywood with 450 scale buildings on an accurate street grid measuring 11 feet by 12 feet. It is true to life down to the last detail, from the tiny handprints in the sidewalk outside the Chinese Theatre to the beams from the cars’ headlights and taillights, that only emerge under black light.

The model is now housed at the Hollywood Heritage Museum where the painstaking work of cleaning and restoring it is in progress.

More: Atlas Obscura
Thanks Bruce!

Animal Paper Lamps

Animal paper lamps made by Hugo Formiga and Teresa Almeida ( OWL).

Purchase them here

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Tweet Of The Day


Black Powder

Black Powder is a term used in the pyrotechnic industry to refer to a specific composition of gunpowder found in fireworks. Damion Berger photographs firework displays, exploring the nature of photography through the prism of the negative image. His work is breathtaking.

Via Cross Connect Magazine


Romanian artist, Cristian Marianciuc, began creating paper cranes during a three-year struggle with depression. As a challenge to himself he folded 1000 origami pieces in 1000 days and has continued to create intricate decorated pieces.

Some of his pieces can be purchased here
Read More

My Own Superhero

I just came across this post from 10 years ago today. It reminds me that I am married to a wonderful guy:
"It snowed like a sonofabitch yesterday. I anticipated an impossible commute so I brought work home with me the night before and toiled over correspondence and a press release all day. Mr. Nag drove home from working all night in Toronto and immediately segued into tasks usually performed by guys in leotards and capes. He shoveled out driveways for the infirm, delivered chicken soup he'd made himself (with ginger and coriander) to a friend who was housebound with a bad knee and for a grand finale drove an ambulance for paramedics who couldn't get their vehicle out of a snowdrift."

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Tweet Of The Day

Hedgehog’s Home

Hedgehog’s Home by Eva Cvijanović is based on a classic story by Branko Ćopić, a writer from former Yugoslavia. It reminds us there is no place like home.

Hedgehog's Home from National Film Board of Canada on Vimeo.

A 40-Year Life of Painting Boards

This year John Foster of Accidental Mysteries returned to a classroom where he last taught in 1987 and found the students were using the same painting boards he had purchased back in 1976. The boards have served two generations of young artists and the spills and marks left on them over the years make them look like abstract works of art in their own right.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Damn! The camouflage didn't work.

Our big dog friend, Lola, is gracing us with her presence over the holidays. Our wild feral kitten, Carmen, wants to be friends with her and expresses this by stalking Lola and feigning punches. Lola tried to hide out on a faux fur throw, hoping Carmen wouldn't notice her but the ruse didn't work.

When Asbestos Was Marketed As Christmas Decor

I did not know that in the good old days a carcinogen was used to create Christmas cheer. It might be time to ditch some of those heirloom ornaments. reports:
Asbestos was once marketed as artificial snow and sprinkled on trees and wreaths and ornaments. Although those products have not been produced for many years, the oldest decorations that were passed down from one generation to the next, may still have small amounts of asbestos.
Here is an example that is familiar to most of us: There is a scene in “The Wizard of Oz” where an asbestos snowfall awakes Dorothy and her friends from a spell cast by the Wicked Witch of the West. (The snow starts falling at 2:48)

More here

How to Build an Igloo

This classic short film shows how to make an igloo using only snow and a knife. I have a knife, no snow though.


DIY Christmas Ornaments

Via Vintage, Thrift and Simple Living

The Most Feared Song In Jazz

Making sense of John Coltrane's "Giant Steps."


The 12 Days of Christmas - A Tale of Avian Misery

Is your true love romantic or just mad? Merry Christmas everyone!

The 12 Days of Christmas - A Tale of Avian Misery from Anomaly London on Vimeo.

Via everlasting blort 

Paint Mixing Compilation

This is an old one but I missed it the first time around. The way Vancouver artist Annette Labedzki makes and mixes paint is strangely satisfying.


Sunday, December 16, 2018

London Skyline Might Have Been Dominated By A Humongous Building That Looked Like A Nuclear Submarine

Design by Sir Misha Black
Credit: RIBA Collections
Had a 1950s plan by British architect and designer, Sir Misha Black, been taken forward a vast nuclear submarine-like building might have dominated London's South Bank. The unexecuted design included a disc-shaped observation platform more than 450 metres (1,500 feet) above London and a terrace so huge that people could actually sail yachts on it. The building would have been the tallest structure in the world at the time.

The image below by visual content marketing agency NeoMam Studios shows what the building would have looked like if it had gone ahead.

More:  Londonist