Design

May 25 2012

The Capsule Lamp has captured our imagination. The intriguingly interactive lighting fixture gleans its idea from the plastic toy capsules of vending machines.



Initially, the Capsule was designed by Hong Kong-based Design Systems Ltd for the Actif children’s wear brand, but it has now taken on a life of its own giving tinkerers and creatives another reason to customize and make it their own.


 
The main structure of the ceiling pendant is made of stained oak, and either without the capsules, or with just the empty capsules, it looks rather coolly Scandinavian.
 
But the fun starts when you attach the little plastic capsules – in any combination and quantity you like with all sorts of little treasures in them.


 
While the fixture comes with a set number of toys, we can envision hiding our own little personal items in the capsules. Or customizing each fixture for each room, with specific themed contents for the capsules? Flowers for one room, office supplies for another, jewelry for the next, sewing items and buttons for yet another. And what about an office or any other work place where team members get to decorate their own fixture above their work areas?


 
We think we’ll just keep the Capsules for ourselves and never let kids near it. - Tuija Seipell





Offices

May 15 2012

The interior of the headquarters for KH Gears exudes a sense of engine power, industry and technology. One can almost hear the metallic rumble of massive machinery, toiling tirelessly in a massive engine room somewhere in the not-so-distant future.



The 855 square-meter (about 9,200 sq.ft.) first phase of the 5,300 square-meter (about 57,000 sq.ft.) industrial laboratory and office space of one of the world’s largest gear producers, opened in Zhuhai, Guangdong, China, in December 2011. The remainder of the space will be developed along the same design guidelines in 2013.



Hong-Kong-based Arboit, lead by founder, Italian-trained architect, Alberto Puchetti, designed the space.

The overall goal was to refresh the brand image of the well-established company, to emphasize its strong scientific heritage and the high value of its products.



Arboit used extremely crisp and large grey-tone visuals of the actual gears sparsely yet effectively to celebrate their beauty, precision and balance.



KH Gears logo green appears strategically throughout the space.

It is used on walls and in corridors as a definer of space and as an aide to directions in the large facility where clients also frequently visit the laboratories, and on parts of furniture as an accent. The green also refers to the company’s environmentally friendly policies.



As a nod to the heritage of technology, the font used in the directionals is the typical font of the early days of computers.

The shiny, dark-gray floors, coated in epoxy resin, and the partially smoked glass walls add to the feel of meticulous, laboratory-grade orderliness and efficiency. - Tuija Seipell

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Art

May 13 2012

Pencils, pegboards, pins, pixels — we’ve been fascinated for a long time by the notion of creating big things from tiny parts. Hiding the image in plain site. Creating pointillist art with physical objects.

So whenever we see yet another iteration of this idea, we pay attention.



Apparently, Stockholm-based photographer Philip Karlberg has also been twirling his pencils for some time, and now all that toying has resulted in a photo shoot for Plaza Magazine.

Karlberg’s six famous sunglass wearers were created using 1,200 sticks and photographed over six days.



From top: Karl Lagerfeld - Jackie O - Lady Gaga - Johnny Depp - John Belushi



We envision using something like this for an eyeglass or sunglass brand, a movie theatre, an optometrist office. The fertile pointillist idea continues to fascinate us every time we witness the power of tiny components exploding into huge impact. - Tuija Seipell

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Ads

May 12 2012



San Francisco’s Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) riders face an unexpected scene at the Montgomery Street Station. With a clever 3D illustration, the station’s tunnel is reborn as one of Utah’s scenic icons – the Delicate Arch in Arches National Park – Watch commuters experiencing the installation.

This ad is part of the Utah Office of Tourism’s (UOT) $2.2 million regional spring/summer Utah Life Elevated® campaign and it will stay in place till the end of June. It was created by UOT’s ad agency of the record for the past seven year, Salt Lake City-based Struck. The extensive regional campaign includes network TV commercials, digital outdoor, online display and social media promotion.

Struck executive creative director Steve Driggs explains that the forced-perspective feel of the tunnel installation started with a 3D illustrator scanning the entire tunnel in all of its dimensions, and continued with the scans being plotted based on GPS coordinates in a 3D architectural rendering program. The result does give experiential advertising a cool, new dimension. - Tuija Seipell

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Design

May 3 2012

It is time to save inflatables from death by boredom, and elevate them to must-have designer experiences! We are talking about enhancing the way adults enjoy playing in the water, although even kids will find a designer inflatable quite a refreshing experience!

What if a designer hotel or resort had amazing, on-brand  inflatables in the pool, or on the beach, available for guests to enjoy, take pictures of, share with their networks?

We are looking for architectural, playful, cool, imaginative, never-before-seen designer ideas for inflatables. Show us what you can do. Show us how far we can take this unexplored water experience and we'll manufacture them.



An entire new water surprise waiting for guests - what can we do to WOW them?



Please send us your design ideas including 3d renderings by the end of May, 2012.

What we are looking for specifically is an inflatable for one or two people. We are in search for the best design idea for a practical but awesomely cool water accessory that will make you want one as soon as you see it floating in a pool or on the beach.
 
The inflatable must fit into the vibe and atmosphere of a five-star resort – we are looking for something super-cool, sculptural, desirable.
 
The winning design, if and when manufactured, will earn the designer a royalty from each sale of the inflatable.

The design competition is open to all designers, industrial designers, graphic designers, illustrators, architects etc -

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Events

May 1 2012

There’s something about hot air balloons that makes us all smile. Perhaps it’s the colors, the roundness, the weightlessness? Or maybe it is our eternal desire to fly, to be weightless, to float happily in the air?
 
At home, colorful balloons have been used to decorate parties, and maybe that is one of the reasons why we associate all balloons with fun and happy times from early childhood on.


 
Outside the home, massive inflatables often decorate celebratory parades, with Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade the best known and oldest (since 1924).


 
Balloons are part of store openings and sale events, and they create brand awareness in TV commercials  and crowd gatherings. Blimps float above baseball stadiums and inside hockey arenas, sometimes towing banners with commercial messages.


 
Balloons have also been a part of movies, from Jules Verne's Phileas Fogg’s stylish voyage in Around the world in 80 days in the 1956 movie, to Karl Fredricksen’s trip to Paradise Falls in his house lifted by thousands of balloons in Disney/Pixar’s Up (2009).



At country fairs and all kinds of festivals, hot air balloon rides are a big draw and a once-in-a lifetime experience for many.

Interestingly, hot air balloons – like so many technological inventions including the internet – have their beginnings in the military. Unmanned balloons were used in China for military signaling and other purposes more than 2000 years ago.


 
It’s also been amazing to learn how big a hobby hot air ballooning has become for thousands of people today! Large festivals and races take place around the world with competition categories ranging from speed to size to creativity. It seems that our fascination with balloons will continue for another couple of millennia. - Tuija Seipell


 

If you have recently seen a super-cool balloon, please let us know!

Nike Extreme

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Music

April 29 2012

 

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Art

April 26 2012


With its black-and-white richness and its familiar graphic themes integrated into a smooth flow, this short contemplation of the Circle of Life is stunningly beautiful. It is based on Edgar Allan Poe’s quote "The boundaries which divide life from death are at best shadowy and  vague. Who shall say where the one ends, and where the other begins?”

The film was created by Saskia Kretzschmann as part of her fifth-semester studies at the famous Anhalt University of Applied Science, in  central Germany. The music is by Thomas Mayer. - Tuija Seipell

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Fashion

April 24 2012

Top left, Top right, Bottom left, Bottom right

 

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Events

April 22 2012

We have experienced dozens of brand and product launches. Much of the time, we are not impressed. Small baby-steps, same-old-same-old, reiterations of existing and stale ideas, broken brand promises, confusing off-brand presentations, mind-numbing marketing-speak, boring PR. Blah blah blah.


 
No matter how much we are lavished and pampered with free trips and swag, if we are not impressed, we are not impressed, and we will not write about it. If it’s not cool, it’s not cool. Simply, if it does not resonate with us, we will not write about it.


 
That is the integrity you our readers expect of us, and we expect it of ourselves, too. So, when we sometimes do publish a sponsored post, we always make it clear that it is a sponsored post. This is not one of them.


 
We’ve attended Mercedes launches before and not written about them. But this time, they got us excited! The last few days in L.A. have shown us that Mercedes is serious about creating cool concepts and producing cars that are more edgy, sporty, cool and engaging for a younger audience, a group whose language they have not spoken before.


Waiters in black t-shirts with tuxedo print which makes it look like a short sleeve jacket - cool idea 

We love it that Mercedes is really trying to do something different. In cars, in events, in branching out, in their approach to reaching a new audience.


 
The “multidisciplinary festival” we attended last Thursday at The Geffen Contemporary at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in L.A. is called Transmission L.A: AV CLUB - presented by The Avant/Garde Diaries and curated by Mike D of the Beastie Boys.


Santagold performing

The festival runs from April 20 to May 6 and it is free and open to the public. It is a mixture of contemporary art, design, music, film and food.


 
The star vehicle of the event is the Mercedes-Benz Concept Style Coupé, the new midsize four-door luxury coupé scheduled for market launch next year.



With the release of the A class later this year, Mercedes started to approach the younger, savvy consumer market. They’ve had to rethink and redevelop their design strategy and marketing but, while the car drives beautifully, the look does not match the promises hinted at during the concept stage. We wanted more. Bolder, edgier, something that really does draw the eye.


 
We think this latest concept, the Mercedes-Benz Concept Style Coupé, has the potential to make a splash. This week in L.A. Mercedes certainly pulled out all the stops with the festival, celebrations and parties attended by the Who is Who in hipster L.A.





Mercedes launched this new car in a way they have not launched before. They understand that street art matters and they enlisted Mike D of the Beastie Boys to bring into this international meeting point of the avant garde his favorite artists and musicians, including Benjamin Jones, Mike Mills, Tom Sachs, Lauren Mackler from Public Fiction, Sage Vaughn, Isaac from Still House Group, Peter Coffin, Roy Choi and Will Fowler.


 
Mercedes had the new car as part of an installation with headphones you listen to while the lights above created a light show on the car, bathing the “new baby” in a cool artistic shower. Very impressive.


 
We have been to many, many car launches before and they are mostly boring. This one was different and interesting, with lots of talking points and lots of ways to engage the audience.


 
Here's a video of what the exhibition looks like. Go visit it while it’s still on! - Bill Tikos