Thursday, March 6, 2014
Future Islands made their TV debut earlier this week on Letterman and although I have been a fan of these guys since I first heard Beach Foam in 2008, I have never had the chance to see them live. I have to say that I really want to see them after they destroyed my expectations on Letterman. The singer's voice as incredible as it is on the album is even more unhinged live and his delivery is as theatrical as a voice like this should be. His dance moves are reminiscent of Carlton on Fresh Prince of Bel Air but less comical as he intensely stalks and sways across the stage, even though they should still make you smile. Up to this point these guys have released a lot of excellent music with little recognition, so maybe with the upcoming release of their album Singles and this TV appearance they will get the recognition they deserve and tour enough that I can finally see them. I have also included some of my favorite songs off older albums.
The first look at the next generation console game Batman: Arkham City. This looks absolutely insane and so fun. The graphics and design is similar to the Nolan Trilogy of movie but even better. The Batmobile looks like a tank but just as much like a muscle car that is maneuverable and practical and the Batsuit has even more armour but is just as sleek. The universe that this Batman exist in is not so concerned with taking place in reality and while it is just as dark this looks not to take itself quite so serious. Can't wait to try this one.
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
I don't know how I missed this and never saw news or info about this event but February 26th marked the 20 year anniversary of the passing of comedian Bill Hicks. I don't know many comedians because I do not find many of these funny men funny so I generally stay away. As has been said many times before, Bill Hicks was ahead of his time and changed comedy for better or worse. He existing in a time before the Internet, his criticism of government, religion, marketing, corporatism, war and misinformation was a lone voice. His rants were well informed and backed by little known facts (at the time) and delivered with rage to an unaccepting American audience. While he only played to small audiences, especially in his home country of the United States (he had a much larger and accepting following (of his anti-US government/military views) in the UK and Australia), his voice was never heard by the masses. His opinions were not in line with the views that are needed for broadcast airtime to receive a larger audience and as I said above, before the Internet, a tool that has since help spread his comedy and message. As time goes on he becomes more relevant as his warnings come true and leaked government documents continue to reveal the corporatocracy in which we live in today. It is tragic that we lost his voice years prior the fall of the towers and the ensuing endless War of Terrorism, NSA and government spying, and the deception and slow crumbling of international democracy. But we still have his words. Even though he spoke of a different time, they are very much about today.
Below is a fantastic documentary American: The Bill Hicks Story on the life and comedy of Bill Hicks as well as a HBO Special, an interview on Austin Public Access, and a send off from one of his shows (at the end of his act he would often leave the audience with a message or a statement to take home and think about).
WILLIAM MELVIN "BILL" HICKS
December 16, 1961 - February 26, 1994
Friday, February 28, 2014
Finished up the background for this one and I am really pleased with the way it turned out. There is still more to come on this but that will be a few weeks.
A documentary which tells the story of visual effects house Rhythm and Hues and their financial struggles while producing the special effects for two effects heavy academy award nominated movies. Just before they won the award for their work for Life of PI they had to file for bankruptcy and lay off most of their staff. This film shows how Hollywood has made it nearly impossible for visual effects companies to survive and the nomadic lifestyle and uncertainty that VFX employees face. It is a sad affair that the studios need to correct especially since they lean on and rely on these companies since a large portion of the summer blockbusters are effects driven. It isn't uncommon now for a feature to have 80% or greater of the film contain effects shots.
Laurent Durieux is a 42 year old illustrator from Brussels that creates some of the most beautiful retro-futuristic posters with bold style and classical crosshatching techniques. His posters feel modern but recall to best of the art deco visual style. The poster for Metropolis is my favorite movie posters of all time and it was the first work of his that I came across.
LAURENT DURIEUX WEBSITE
LAURENT DURIEUX WEBSITE
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
The piece of the Illulissat Glacier in Western Greenland the size of Manhattan broke off into the ocean on May 8th, 2008 and it was caught on film and I have to say it is truly sublime video to which you can see the enormity of this event and yet at the same time not be able to grasp the size of this event or what it must have been like to witness this in person. Truly awe inspiring to see such a dramatic occurrence in nature. This clip is from a full length documentary Chasing Ice, which I have not seen and have heard little of, up to this point.
This is a piece of concept design, or character design, that I did for a competition last week. He is the Insect King and ruler of all insects. I also included a detail so you can see just how much detail I put into this guy and the steps of the process along the way.