I recently came across some amazing illustration work by Dan Matutina at Twisted Fork. I really enjoy his aesthetic style the seems to be a hybrid of contemporary digital mastery and nostalgic discoveries from another era. The color combinations, slight perspective, depth and textures make these illustrations very unique. Lunarize (shown here) is one of my personal favorites. You can also find his work for sale at here.
Oooo… the book that changed my life is becoming a movie. The trailer looks good… let’s see. I thought for many years this book should be a film, but didn’t think any director could pull it off.
Interesting short documentary about the history of the poster ‘Keep Calm & Carry On’. Thanks to our vcuqatar library Mike Wirtz for sending this my way.
I was recently in Kerala in Southern India and fell in love with all the ‘Lorry’ trucks. The trucks are very elaborately detailed with hand painted graphics, text and images. I see this sort of thing here in Doha, but the trucks I saw in Kerala were quite impressive. I also know that a similar culture exists in Pakistan (the image shown above from fastertimes.com). While in Kerala or driver showed us a special place were the trucks are kept for the night and provided a lot of information about the process of getting them painted. This definitely triggered my interest to find out more. I’m going to start collecting information to put together a documentary film series on hand painted graphics in different parts of the world… signs, trucks, etc.
Wham!Bam!Islam! A wonderful documentary centered around Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa’s concept for a comic book titled ‘the 99’. The documentary takes the audience through all the ups and downs of getting his ideas off the ground, Dr. Naif’s background history and his current battles with right-wing Islamists. The comic book, now turned tv series and feature film, has been very controversial within different sects of Muslim’s. I recommend watching this documentary.
Bon Iver, Holocene music video. Wow. An amazing music video, it is both so real and surreal at the same time. All the shots are beautiful and I really enjoy the subtle moments of ‘effects’, like extra ripples and stones growing, that are almost seem natural. I am also happy to say that I’ve been to every scene location in this video, except the last one… I would love to go back to Iceland with a little extra time and properly film shots.
‘Press Pause Play' is a documentary film about the rise of creativity due to accessibility, new digital tools, cost effective methods for making and endless possibilities for distribution. In order for a creative person, a writer, filmmaker, musician, artists, etc., to be acknowledged and viewed by the masses, he or she typically had to be trained in that discipline, worked for a number of years, know the right people, and then maybe have a chance at 'success'. Today, anyone with an idea and a self-driven, self-learning attitude can create and distribute work and become successful over night.
The danger of this new democratized open source & social media revolution is that if everyone can be an artist, design, musician or writer, with access to the same tools and sources, then will bring about our own demise through mediocrity and self-absorbed acts of creativity?
This documentary was definitely worth watching and is probably the best I’ve seen regarding this hot contemporary topic. My biggest criticism is that the film really focused on music as a major source of content. I would like to see more about writing, design and other visual arts as well. Perhaps a version two.
You can watch the documentary on itunes or watch a free version on vimeo.
I watched the film ‘Le Havre’ by director Aki Kaurismäki last night and was completely amazed at the scene development, color and cinematography. The film is shot like a period film, in fact I had to double check at the start of the film to see if this was true, because it looked like it was actually shot in 1960’s Paris. The character movements, the ‘Mise_en_scène’, the dialogue, the film angles and the color made it all seem genuine.
However, what I thought was unique… is that it doesn’t try to be a period film, or at least that is my opinion. The film is really a parody of a period film and borrows visual language, narrative structure and character development.
If it was meant to be a period film, I doubt the director would have made so many obvious mistakes. People seem to be fixating on these facts as being ‘incorrect’, when in fact it was probably intentional.
The storyline is both a simplistic 1960’s narrative like film about culture, white man helping a black boy, as well as a reference to a more contemporary situation involving the large influx of refugees from Islamic African countries into European cities, especially France. And how the French government has mistreated these refugees and labeled many as ‘terrorists’. All of this is subtly hinted at in the film, even a newspaper headline read ‘al-Qaeda’ which was not an organization at that time.
The director hints subtly at the dichotomy between the period film and contemporary film with actors using cell phones, street shots that combine old and new architecture, and the exchange of Euros as cash, which probably points to governmental and economic issues spreading across Europe.
So in the end, my opinion is that this is not a period film with a basic storyline, but a complex story that is challenging the audience in a way that perhaps we have not encountered before. The film does not try to trivialize the refugee situation, but points to it in a poetic way that allows audience member to interpret and digest. Not to mention, the amazing visual elements that make us long for the romance of 35mm kodak and attention to formal detail within each scene.
‘The Invention of Dr. Nakamats' is a fun and entertaining indi documentary I watched the other night. The Dr's character is pretty amazing.