Posted in Arty sparks

Really short films

I love movies. From the classics, to quirky arthouse films, to those sort of pathetic teeny flicks where the smart, funny girl gets the dream guy when she removes her spectacles and takes down her ponytail and OMG SHE’S STUNNING. Yep, those ones. So I really like these prints, which I found on Fab.com. Here’s the story: Cooper Blacula, named for the great typeface and even greater movie, is a print series of classic films summed up in one brief and broken sentence and typeset in Cooper Black. These posters, sold exclusively through Fab.com, are museum quality prints on enhanced matte cover stock and printed with archival inks. All posters float in a quarter inch white border. Like so…

So much more than a handyman, Mr Miyagi.
And nobody puts baby in a corner.
Who ya gonna call?
Save Ferris.
And little Drew Barrymore screams.
Oh Maverick, you’re a goose.

You can check out the range of prints at the Cooper Blacula site here. And the collection makes me realise how many more dodgy films I have yet to see!

Posted in Home sparks

Light it up

Sarah Turner in the UK makes incredible works of art. The fact that they’re also functional lights to hang from your wall or ceiling is just a bonus. And then they’re made from recycled materials, which is pretty much the cherry on top of the icing on the cake.

Here is Ella – over 1 metre wide, this amazing chandelier is made from 310 plastic drink bottles. Sarah says that she collected the bottles from local cafes and homes, cleaned them and sandblasted them to turn white. Ella got her name from her umbrella-like shape. Isn’t she pretty?

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And here’s Sprite 10, a table lamp made from ten old Sprite bottles. Morphed into an unrecognisable beautiful floral design. The lamp comes in traditional green, or the sugar-free blueness of Sprite Zero bottles.

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Daisy is another one of my favourites – again, made from sandblasted drink bottles and available in a wide range of colours.

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And another stunner – Cola 30 is made out of 30 recycled 1.25 litre Coke bottles. I try not to think too much about the sugar that was consumed to create this sweeeeet design. At least the people who drank the contents of the bottles were technically contributing to the greater good of Sarah’s amazing upcycling into art. And it’s almost impossible to tell at a glance what this ceiling light is made from, which makes it easier to forget about the source!

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You can check out more of Sarah Turner’s amazing work on her website here and these and many others are available for purchase (wherever you are in the world) in her etsy shop here. Love your work, Sarah!

Posted in Fashion Sparks

Bag lady designs

I like bags. And if they’re cute and clever and good for the environment, then so much the better, I say. And I’ve found these very cool canvas shopping totes on etsy, made by Pamela Fugate Designs, and I reckon they fit the bill.

Like this slightly more highbrow version of that famous Sir Mix-a-Lot quote…

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Or this, for fans of Fifty Shades of Grey. Yep, really.

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And for the bakin’ homeboy or homegirl in your life, there’s this bag.

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There’s this classic Mom/Mum bag, which I’m guessing is meant to stop any pesky children asking too many questions. But I wouldn’t recommend bringing it along to your local farmer’s market as it feels in conflict with the relaxed, organic, herbal kinda vibe. Unless of course you are the organic farmer selling your produce. In which case, you might want to sell these bags in answer to questions like, “Why does that organic clove of garlic cost $32?” or “How do you know that heirloom tomatoes are worth 500% more than regular tomatoes?” or that sort of thing.

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There’s also a range of customised wedding totes – I’m not really sure how they work though, to be honest. As a bridesmaid, I’ve never received a show bag of treats from the bride (not complaining, I have been lucky to receive much nicer gifts from the lovely brides I’ve maided for). And I’ve not been to a wedding that gave away a goodie bag instead of a small memento that you could take home in your handbag. But each to their own on their big day!

You can check out the range of bags (and shirts and baby outfits) at Pamela’s etsy shop here.

Posted in Arty sparks

Here’s looking at you…

I’m all for different creative ideas to liven up your walls with quirky works of art. And if you want to add a little science to your art, then so much the better, I say. And if you want to add a little bit of yourself – literally, in this case – to personalise your art, well then, go nuts. Which is kinda what the good people at DNA 11 have done.

Exhibit A: their DNA Portraits (TM) series. According to the website, here’s how it works: (1) Customise your artwork (choosing colour, style, size, frame), (2) Order your DNA collection kit, (3) Collect a cheek cell swab using your kit [uh huh], and (4) send the sample back and let the DNA 11 people work their magic. Whether you want your genetic code artwork to look like the sparkling lights of a big city, or perhaps golden rays of sunshine, there is an option to suit you. You can also get a print made of your pet’s DNA, if you prefer.

Or maybe you’re not a huge fan of DNA, incredible though it may be, but you still want some sort of personalised art on your wall. How about a fingerprint? Yep, there is a Fingerprint Portraits (TM) series. In a similar process to the DNA series, you purchase a Fingerprint Collection Kit and then print away til you’re happy with one, which you then send back to make your artwork with your chosen colours, size, style and frame.

And then there’s the KISS Portraits (TM) series. With this series, you get a gift with purchase – a lipstick, of course. Again, you order the Kiss Collection Kit, ‘apply the provided Revolution Organics lipstick’, then you ‘kiss the kiss sheets till you make the perfect lip print’, send it back and you’re set.

A unique gift idea for someone who has everything. A different twist on personalised art. A way to make sure that prints of you (well, parts of you) last forever. Whatever your motivation, this is definitely an interesting idea and the DNA 11 website is well worth a look. And don’t worry, they ship fingerprints, DNA and kisses all around the world.

Posted in Arty sparks

Pop Charts

Some people need charts and visuals to really make sense of the world. I see how it can sometimes be helpful to reduce the confusion of something big or complex into a series of connected boxes on an A3 piece of paper. In the corporate world, accountants have their ‘mud maps’, HR people have their ‘org charts’, management consultants have their ‘stakeholder maps’ and marketing people tend to have something brightly coloured and written in code, so that it doesn’t make sense to outsiders. But that’s just work. What if there were clever people who used their charting prowess to help us navigate and better understand the real world? Ta-da, here’s Pop Chart Lab.

The Lab began a couple of years ago, founded by a book editor and a graphic designer who joined forces with one modest goal in mind: to render all of human experience in chart form. Uh huh. Their range is amazing – they have tackled everything from beer to culinary devices to the story of a boy’s migration to a town called Bel Air. Here are some of my favourite prints (they also print their charts on t-shirts, in case you want to educate the masses).

(c) Pop Chart Lab

Oh yes, from Bill Haley in the top left to Lady Gaga in the bottom right corner, this is indeed A Visual Compendium of Notable Haircuts in Popular Music. It’s a signed, limited edition print that is sure to get people talking. And if you like this, you’ll probably like its cousin: A Visual Compendium of Notable Haircuts in Hollywood. (That one even includes Chewbacca’s impressive ‘do, along with several cast members of the Harry Potter franchise.)

(c) Pop Chart Lab

And here’s the chart that I think is my favourite – a collection of 13 pie charts about pies. Yep, they’re breaking down the ingredients that go into those delicious desserts and it is just as scary as you might imagine. All the old favourites are there – including Fig. 12, Peanut Butter Pie, which is full of gooey goodness: by my calculations, almost 50% peanut butter, around 20% Oreos and almost as much butter, with a fair dose of heavy cream, vanilla extract and bittersweet chocolate. God bless America, I say. (If pies aren’t your thing, you might like The Delectable Kaleidoscope of Candy Bars – a pretty, colourful and super-detailed examination of the common ingredients and textures linking a bzillion different types of sweet treats.)

(c) Pop Chart Lab

And finally, Constitutions of Classic Cocktails breaks down nearly 70 famous drinks into their constituent parts. Apparently, this is the most elaborate chart that the Lab folk have ever made – it is beautifully designed and unbelievably detailed. Whether you’re looking for inspiration to get shakin’, know a dedicated barfly with a birthday coming up, or just like the design, this is a good ‘un. I love it because to me it looks as though the cocktails are at the centre of a mysterious sort of galaxy. Or perhaps cocktails are like the Wheel of Fortune. And let’s face it, when the drinks are flowing, both of those statements are generally true.

If you’re thirsty for more info, you can check out many more educational works of art at the fabulous Pop Chart Lab site here.