Fun Paper Kirigami and Karakuri Puppets with Unexpected Behaviors by Haruki Nakamura 

Japanese designer Haruki Nakamura has a knack for creating all kinds of interesting paper objects from puzzles to kirigami toys. One of his best designs is this awesome squeezable paper puppet that reveals a sheep wearing wolf’s clothing. Also check out his penguin bomb, a type of automated paper puppet called a karakuri that has hidden inner mechanisms. Nakamura sells all of his designs in an online shop, but currently only ships within Japan. (via GIF87a, Grape)

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Abstract Cakes Topped With Chocolate Brushstrokes 

Moscow-based bakery Kalabasa takes a more abstract view of cake decorating, mounting its confections with stiff swipes of chocolate that look like painted brushstrokes. The colorful cakes and cupcakes are each decorated with layers of the crisp painterly gestures, and often drizzled with similar colors to tie together the whole production. You can view more of the artistic treats in a variety of shades on the bakery’s Instagram. (via Design You Trust)

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Hurdy-Gurdy: UGEARS Launches the World’s First Mechanical Musical Model 

All-in-one: puzzle, toy and fully fledged musical instrument, UGEARS has just launched one of their most ambitious mechanical models yet—Hurdy-Gurdy, now on Kickstarter. Based on the obscure but beloved folk instrument which derives its sounds through a crank-driven wheel that rubs against strings like a violin, the UGEARS Hurdy-Gurdy is a DIY wood model that lets you construct and play it yourself.

Inspired by the art of medieval craftsmen, the new model comes with everything needed for assembly including incredibly precise laser cut wood components, strings, and instructions. To help with easy assembly, the pieces are designed to lock together without the need for glue or adhesive while remaining fully mechanical. All UGEARS products are built from eco-friendly, sustainably sourced plywood.

In addition to the instrument, UGEARS is offering a wide variety of additional models as part of their expanding Mechnical Town series that now includes a Tram Line Model, Rail Manipulator Model, a Robot Factory Model, and a number of smaller toys including a yet-to-be-announced “secret” model.

The Hurdy-Gurdy model launches today and you can mix and match a variety of reward options right now on Kickstarter.

This post was sponsored by UGEARS.

A Technicolor Basketball Court Emerges in Paris 

Photo © Sébastien Michelini

In a unique collaboration between French fashion brand Pigalle and design agency Ill-Studio, the Paris Duperré basketball court was recently redesigned and repainted with a vibrant new color scheme. The narrow basketball court is nestled between two apartment buildings in the 9th arrondissement and has become a backdrop of sorts for unconventional color schemes, the first of which appeared in 2015. Photos courtesy Alex Penfornis and Sébastien Michelini. (via It’s Nice That)

Photo © Penfornis Alex

Photo © Penfornis Alex

Photo © Penfornis Alex

Photo © Penfornis Alex

Photo © Penfornis Alex

Photo © Penfornis Alex

Photo © Penfornis Alex

Photo © Penfornis Alex

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The Apprehension Engine: An Instrument Designed to Play the Music of Nightmares 

Movie composer Mark Korven wanted to craft the perfect sounds for horror movies, but the instruments he needed didn’t exist, and he was tired of using the same digital samples. To produce the original effects needed for evoking breathtaking moments of suspension, he teamed up with guitar maker Tony Duggan-Smith to craft an original instrument that would better aid in manufacturing fear. The Apprehension Engine is that tool, a mechanism built with several bowed metal rulers, spring reverbs, a few long metal rods, and other attachments that allow for spooky interludes and effects.

“A normal instrument, you are playing it and expecting it to have a sound that is pleasing,” said Korven to Great Big Story, “but with an instrument like this, the goal is to produce sounds, that in this case, are disturbing.”

The Apprehension Engine expresses the emotions that cannot be expressed in other ways, triggering fear with intense sonic methods. You can listen to more music by the machine tuned to provoke horror in the video below. (via Great Big Story)

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Mesmerizing New Serpentine Tattoos by Mirko Sata 

Milan-based tattoo artist Mirko Sata (previously) has mastered the art of inking snakes, creating elaborate tangles of scales and tails that wrap around the arms and legs of his clients. Sata frequently works with opposing color schemes, creating novel contrasts between black and white or red and green in the otherwise minimalist line-based pieces. He’s also incorporated various floral motifs in place of the snake’s scales in a number of recent pieces. You can follow more of his work on Instagram.

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