New things this Summer

October 20, 2009

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I feel like I’ve done a lot of new things this summer, so I made a big list (all with tedious links to relevant posts) because lists please me.

Lived in a big city
Cycled in london
went to barcelona, rome and naples
Saw two lots of prostitutes (Naples)
Saw dead bodies in pompei
Went to a wedding reception as a grown-up (conclusions: danced better as child)
Went to Lovebox and Bestival
Saw Florence and the Machine a lot accidentally
Went to first Tweetups – Cozytweetup in St James’ park, Ale 2.0 and Twestival,
Became a paid blogger,
Started writing for Bitchbuzz,
Went to pretentious grad and grown-up design shows
Went to my first company party (Moo). Stole balloons.
Went to a press conference
Did my longest placement to date.
Walked my soles out in london.
Saw my favourite comedians: Bill Bailey and Eddie Izzard
Was excited by seeing the countryside (felt horrified by this since i come from the countryside and clearly need to leave the city.)
Went to Ben and Jerry’s festival and did Press Pit runs. In front of the crowd is good.
Made candles.
Learned to cook more.

I haven’t made Naples sound great. It was very prostitue-ridden and a restaurant hunt ended in McDonalds. Also best driving at crossroads have ever seen in life – may not be of interest to those who do not like 6 minute videos of driving (I am mystified as to where the 102 views came from: Youtube search must be gold). I would love an aerial view of this:

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Last day of (untitled) ends at the pub. I cycle merrily away 20 metres down the street and chain my bike up outside Aldgate East and head off to a pub somewhere else. Helpfully some fool tries to tamper with my bike lock and has a successful jamming session with the combination.

The next day I am lurking outside Brick Lane 118-ing my heart out for a handyman. The handymen are not by their diaries, and whilst my father offers to leap in the car with bolt-croppers and drive up from Reading I politely decline this and wait for alternative help.

Hello said I, popping into the Free Range art display. Hello said Loughborough textiles. We’re soft and pretty, stroll around and take photos of us. So i did. I also touched when I wasn’t meant to. Sorry about that.

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Nice things by Jenny Appleton; Stephen Fry and Gherkin prints and a witty table. Said witty table opens with a drawer concerned primarily with sodding tea and biscuits (see first photo).

Then in T2 or some other slightly more arty (read lofty and poorly lit) warehouse I discovered some art. Ingeniously putting the most confusing work downstairs in some effort to either make people shuffle quickly into the building in or to dissuade those not seriously into art, upstairs had some interesting things.

It also had rogue animal farm-esque chickens sprawled on the floor by walls and pillars. I liked the installations which were mostly odd and included a space ship.

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There were some giant WTF, OMFG, and LOL letters, and some laptops sitting in front of them which played a giant selection of youtube clips. Commentary on society no doubt, but appealed to me mostly through the appearance of Keyboard Cat on a laptop. This is significant because I like Keyboard Cat and his piano music-making is my ringtone.

Here is a link to the ‘100 most iconic internet videos today’ and although I have not yet fully investigated this gem, I see that Noah, Charlie and Powerthirst are there so it must be reliable.

Here is a link to keyboard cat as Dizzy Rascal falls off the stage. Plink plonk.

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There was also a ‘Box of Not Knowing’ with bars of soap with life’s terrifying questions on them. Each one essentially a premise for ‘sex and the city’.

I also liked the free rock and took two. Sorry about this also, although there was no sign or candy attendant. Perhaps something to look into.

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A blog in which I make obvious my like of the word hyperbole.

At some point a few weeks ago (can be ratified) Central St Martin’s college of the illustrious University of the Arts London held a design show (University of the Arts; a place my father frowned at and said in a very father-like voice that it was not somewhere he had heard of) . I went because design shows I figure are better than reading prospectuses, and I’m quite interested in the digital design course.

Ground floor was art which I chiefly ignored and took a few photos of bright things and of some knitted food.

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Digital media was downstairs. It was very nice, but didn’t hold attention and I was mildly disappointed. There were some nice uses of technology; A video with hanging strips of blue and red in front of it which produced a slightly different video depending on where you stood. It might have stretched the suggestion that each video gave a different viewpoint when they were really quite similar, but It got the audience to jump around between screens which was nice to play with. There was also a podium which displayed different ‘layers of lives’ (video fragments) which played depending on which sensor hand hovered over. Someone had a play making an augmented reality shopping assistant which was good for a wave around.

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Upstairs, after some nicely rickety wooden staircase was photography. A guy [Fen Yu Jen] had done some photo adventuring around the UK taking photos of people who serve tourists as their job. I liked the photos. Using a button trigger, the photos are nice; really serene in a simple sort of way.

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I found some illustration work by Kelly Joy Sandall. Blurb:

“Anxious by the passing of time compounded by a personal sense of loss and absence, I set out to capture illusive moments. The personal became a vehicle in which to express this loss. The balloon can be used to celebrate, mask, burst of reveal. It can hide a moment, it can create a fleeting moment, it can be erased completely in an attempt to peel back time.”

Sure I like pictures of balloons. I wondered if in finding a dissertations theme whether this just creates philosophical hyperbole. Work should impress first and be supported by words – and if there’s art and philosophy behind it that then wonderful, lovely. But when it seems as thought short paragraph of art hyperbole is what drives it then the product seems to take a dive. I overheard a girl telling her mother how a friend had made an awesome book where as you turned the pages, the overlapping of pages moved from predominantly light to predominantly dark, not only representing the light changes during a single day, but also through a year. Very clever, thought I, viewing the book in a new light.

Maybe that’s my problem. I want to see digital design that uses new technology, makes sense and is interesting, and doesn’t set out a hyperbole alarm off.

Sidenote: I like the first photo a lot because it reminds me of photos by my friend Bob.

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