In the course of raising a child there comes a series of strange moments in when you discover your child is obtaining skills and perfecting their abilities that surpass what you yourself are capable of. It’s a humbling and awesome thing to witness. Such is the case with this friendly battle between St. Louis-based beatboxer Nicole Paris and her dad. He’s definitely a talented beatboxer and taught his daughter well, but it becomes extremely clear she’s taken things to a ridiculously different level. The video is a follow-up to a battle the duo posted online last year. Amazing. I’ve already watched this three times this morning. (via Leonard Beaty, Ambrosia for Heads, thnx Jess!)
From friends who are digital artists, retouchers, or illustrators, I sometimes hear stories of clients who suggest projects should go faster or simply cost less because the software “does it all for you.” While the tools are indeed more efficient and impressive with each new Photoshop or Illustrator release, the skill required to master those tools is still substantial. Case in point, this new time-lapse from Argentinian photographer and retoucher Joaquin Villaverde who demonstrates his Photoshop abilities by giving new life to a severely damaged black and white portrait of a girl. The clip shows two hours of work condensed into three minutes. (via PetaPixel)
If you’ve been on the hunt for the perfect ceramic capybara planter, look no further. Ceramicist Priscilla Ramos from São Paulo, Brazil, has a fantastic line of animal planters in the form of foxes, whales, anteaters, and yes, even the world’s largest rodent. She’s even working on a sloth! The handmade stoneware pieces are perfect for small succulents or cacti, and you can see more in her shop: Cumbuca Chic. (via NOTCOT)
Ben Butler (previously) is fascinated by the complex structures that emerge from simple and delicate processes. This phenomenon can be found in the elaborate systems produced by ant colonies to human cities, small quotidian actions accumulating into overpowering structures. Unbounded, Butler’s installation on display at Rice University Gallery in Houston, Texas, uses this same idea by assembling over 10,000 pieces of poplar wood into a matrix-like structure. This massive arrangement coalesces into an unexpectedly mesmerizing array of grids that stretch to fill the gallery space.
Butler approached this installation, as he commonly does within his practice, without initial sketches or ideas of what he would like the structure to look like. He played with the materials, discovering configurations on the spot. Although the grids within Unbounded were pre-made in his studio, the way they were configured and connected horizontally was all in response to the space. This way of acting in the present ensured that the structure’s outcome would be organic, and not purely responding to a preconceived shape.
Poplar wood was chosen for the installation because of its malleability and abundance, which gave Butler the ability to fiddle with a material that seemed endless. This idea of endlessness also tied into the title he chose for the piece. Butler wanted the piece to have no defined boundary or vantage point, but encourage the audience to walk around and within the structure, discovering it from all angles.
Butler received an MFA in sculpture from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2003. He currently lives and works in Memphis, Tennessee and Quogue, New York and has an upcoming exhibition of his sculptures and drawings at The University of Mississippi Museum, Oxford opening in September 2015.
Working with liquid synthetic resin and wire, Japanese artist Sakae (previously) crafts these ornate bunches of translucent flowers worn as hair sculptural hair ornaments called kanzashi. Kanzashi were traditionally made from small pieces of folded cloth, but have since evolved into a number of different mediums. Each of Sakae’s pins are one-of-kind, requiring anywhere from a few days to a month to fabricate, and due to extraordinarily high demand she chooses to put each piece up for auction through an announcement on her website and Facebook page (usually selling for several thousand dollars). You can see her most recent pieces on Pinterest.
Photographer Phoo Chan has seen more than his fair share of spectacular moments while photographing birds and other wildlife around his home in California, but perhaps nothing will ever top what he witnessed last spring while shooting near Kitsap, Washington: a crow riding atop a bald eagle. It only lasted for a few seconds, but Chan managed to capture the entire encounter on film. He shares about the image:
Crows are known for aggressively harassing other raptors that are much bigger in size when spotted in their territories and usually these ‘intruders’ simply retreat without much fuss. However, in this frame the crow did not seem to harass the bald eagle at such close proximity and neither did the bald eagle seem to mind the crow’s presence invading its personal space. What made it even more bizarre was that the crow even made a brief stop on the back of the eagle as if it was taking a free scenic ride and the eagle simply obliged.
Street artist OakOak (previously) continues to bring smiles and double-takes to his hometown of St. Etienne, France, an old industrial town with drab facades and cracked sidewalks ripe for his unique brand of visual jokes. He shares his love for superheroes, the Simpsons, Bruce Lee, and other pop culture references through mostly non-destructive, temporary interventions that interact with the immediate environment. Some of OakOak’s best works have been gathered into a new book, Urban Diversion (in French), and the artist had an exhibition earlier this year at le cabinet d’amateur earlier this year.