Sunday, 20 March 2011

One more video

This is a couple of years old, but I just came across it and I love it:

Also, we had the party this weekend and it was awesome! I'm off to London today to meet my dad, his girlfriend and my brother for dinner. I think I might go in early and get to a gallery, though that depends on how much energy I can muster.

Nuclear Boy has a Stomach Ache

This video is genius in every way. A friend of mine who lives in Japan sent it to me. I feel much better about the situation in Fukushima now:

Sunday, 13 March 2011

New animation

Me and my flatmate are having a party next week and we wanted to have a cool invitation for it, so I made this.

I've had to alter the ending for this version as I didn't really think that it'd be a great idea to have my address on here. It's only the very end that's changed though, and hopefully it's still fun to watch.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

I'm reading Half of a Yellow Sun at the moment. It's a fantastic book - very understated and genuine, and most of all personal. The Nigerian-Biafran war was something I only knew the vaguest of details about, and as I got into the book, the sensation of being drawn into this huge historical event was at once both wonderful and awful.
It's the same feeling I had when I read Birds Without Wings a couple of years ago. These novels present you with something which was the absolute centre of the world for people in that time and place, and allows you to engage with it on that level. I love that in a way - it makes me feel as though I'm gaining something from being out in these important parts of the world, at least mentally. But it also makes me feel as though there is an infinity of things like this - events which are so important and about which I know so little (and can do so little about), and I feel helpless from knowing that.

There's a quote in Half of a Yellow Sun that describes that feeling - of being overwhelmed by the reality of the world and shocked that you don't collapse from the weight of that awful knowledge. It's so perfectly formed:

"It frightened him that he slept well at nights, that he was still calmed by the scent of orange leaves and the turquoise stillness of the sea..."

Women, women everywhere

I (being the bad woman that I am) hadn't known that today was International Women's Day, and yet I still ended up visiting an exhibition of Mary Kelly projects at the Whitworth.

The pieces were hugely varied, but almost all of them incorporated the narratives of women themselves somehow in the art. The piece below was what really drew me in to the exhibition, it's a greenhouse with short testimonials from different women cut into the glass. You can walk inside and experience the anonymous words of a variety of women - they all somehow relate to the experience of being a woman and/or feminism, but they're all incredibly varied. The setting is very engaging and I felt very connected to the testimonials through the art work.

It's been a while since I went to an exhibition that really challenged me, and I felt a fantastic rush of thoughts and ideas as I walked around it, which was wonderful.

I don't want to go into too much detail here of my own experience of the exhibition, since a) it's obviously very subjective, and related to my own issues with my identity as a woman, but mainly because b) I really think it's worth going to the exhibition (any exhibition really) without too many preconceptions, so that you can engage with it on the personal level that's necessary for it to really speak to you and your ideas and values.

I will say that one of my favourite things about it was that it was very intellectual while at the same time being very emotive, which is, to me, one of the rarest, most special of states to be able to capture. I would really recommend the exhibition - it's there till 12th of June.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

I don't own any Apple products, I dislike their focus on branding and their products seem more of a symbol of that brand than anything useful in the long term. However, I do find Steve Jobs an interesting person, and he comes across as particularly genuine in the video below (via Nathan Bransford). It's the sort of speech that you hear and rather than feeling as though it's trying to tell you something, you get a sense that it's crystallising within you something that you've felt elements of for a long time.

I think this video may only be something that feels particularly relevant to me at this point in time, and perhaps anyone else watching it won't feel the same connection. That in itself is interesting I suppose. If you are watching it and you think it's in any way striking a chord, keep on with the whole thing, it's good.

Monday, 7 March 2011


OK, one more lovely thing found while enjoying the internet too much (also from My Modern Metropolis), I'm going to bed now:

Water Sculpture

Would you look at this. It is incredible - Water Sculpture by Shinichi Maruyama, via My Modern Metropolis:

Water Sculpture from Shinichi Maruyama on Vimeo.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

World book night

This is phenomenal, I'm so in love with it (check out the website of one of the creators for more amazing stuff):

Happy World Book Night.


Saturday, 5 March 2011

Finished animation

Here's the animation I was working on. I made it as a welcome home for my dad, who came back yesterday from a tour of duty. I was a bit concerned that I wouldn't be able to post it here (the army can be a bit weird about this sort of thing), but he's said it's OK.

I made it using Windows Movie Maker, which was all I had. It was really great for software that was already there on my computer, but it got a bit cumbersome towards the end of the project as it's not really designed to make animations from hundreds of photos.

There's a bit in this where the conversion to a movie file has corrupted, and I considered changing the point at which the music transitions. But in the end, it just felt like a lot of work to open it and make the changes then re-export it to a movie file, and I'm really pleased with it as it is.

It was quite easy to make and a lot of fun, so I'd recommend it to anyone who fancies it.

Check it out: