video

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Design

A mesmerizing pendulum wave demonstration with 16 bowling balls in a North Carolina forest

September 9, 2014

Christopher Jobson

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If you’ve ever been to a science museum or taken a physics class, you’ve probably encountered an example of a pendulum wave. This video shows a large-scale pendulum wave contraption built on private property in the mountains of North Carolina, near Burnsville. The mechanism relies on 16 precisely hung bowling balls on a wooden frame that swing in hypnotic patterns for a cycle of about 2 minute and 40 seconds. Via Maria Ikenberry who filmed the clip:

The length of time it takes a ball to swing back and forth one time to return to its starting position is dependent on the length of the pendulum, not the mass of the ball. A longer pendulum will take longer to complete one cycle than a shorter pendulum. The lengths of the pendula in this demonstration are all different and were calculated so that in about 2:40, the balls all return to the same position at the same time – in that 2:40, the longest pendulum (in front) will oscillate (or go back and forth) 50 times, the next will oscillate 51 times, and on to the last of the 16 pendula which will oscillate 65 times.

Because the piece is outdoors, a number of factors prevent the balls from precisely lining up at the end, but it’s still easy to get the idea. In a perfectly controlled environment you get something like this.

Update: The pendulum was built by Appalachian State University teacher and artist Jeff Goodman.

 

 



Animation Design

Woodworker Creates Detailed Stop-Motion Films of his Process

September 8, 2014

Christopher Jobson

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Designer and woodworker Frank Howarth has a passion for building things with his hands, he makes everything from shelves and chairs to toys and tables. But there’s one thing he might be even more passionate about: showing people how he does it on his YouTube channel. In some of his most popular films, the Howarth removes himself completely to create stop-motion animations with thousands of photos, where the objects appear to build themselves. In the two shown here he builds a trio of bookshelves and a lawn chair. If you liked this, don’t miss the Triumph Spitfire clip. (via The Awesomer)

 

 



Design

Timelapse of the Amish raising a giant barn in under 10 hours

September 5, 2014

Christopher Jobson

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Ohio resident Scott Miller shot this timelapse video earlier this year of dozens of Amish men raising a barn. The entire construction cycle takes place between 7am and 5pm—with at least an hour for lunch—and yet the bulk of the work is done by the end of the day. Amazing to see how incredibly precise the entire endeavor is. (via Sploid)

 

 



Science

Tiny Shrimp-like Organisms Try to Illuminate the Insides of Fish That Eat Them

September 4, 2014

Christopher Jobson

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No, these aren’t light vomiting fish, though you would be forgiven for thinking so because that’s exactly what it looks like. What you’re seeing is the defense mechanism of a tiny crustacean called an ostracod, a shrimp-like organism about 1mm in size that some fish accidentally eat while hunting for plankton. When eaten by a translucent cardinalfish, the ostracod immediately releases a bioluminescent chemical in an attempt to illuminate the fish from the inside, making it immediately identifiable to predators. WHAT. Not wanting to be eaten, the cardinalfish immediately spits out the ostracod, resulting in little underwater fish fireworks. What an incredible game of evolutionary cat and mouse. The clip above is from a new show on BBC Two called Super Senses. If you’re in the UK you can watch it online in HD for a few more days. (via For Science Sake)

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Art Documentary

Perspective: Artist Zaria Forman Shares the Inspiration behind Her Large-Scale Pastel Waves and Icebergs

September 3, 2014

Christopher Jobson

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As part of his ongoing Making Art series, filmmaker Jesse Brass sits down with artist Zaria Forman (previously) who discusses the inspiration and intent behind her giant pastel drawings of icebergs and ocean waves.

 

 



Art

Eye Know: A Kaleidoscopic Journey through the Streets of Tokyo at Night

September 2, 2014

Christopher Jobson

This independent film project from filmmaker Hiroshi Kondo starts as a fairly typical time-lapse journey through highways surrounding Tokyo, but quickly morphs into something entirely different. Kondo makes use of lampposts and other nighttime light sources to create this dazzling, kaleidoscopic explosion of color and motion set to music by Ayako Taniguchi.

 

 



Art

Ornate Painted Dragons Based on a Single Giant Brush Stroke

August 20, 2014

Christopher Jobson

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One of the most common feelings I get when watching an artist working is “oh, that looks easy.” After all, the materials and method are all right in front of you: paint or ink, a paint brush or pen, and a hand that moves deftly across a canvas. What goes completely unseen of course are the years upon years of practice, the trials and failures, and the possession of innate talent. A great example of this are these Japanese dragon paintings that are rendered almost completely with a single stroke of paint.

According to Japanese culture blog Iromegane, the paintings are called Hitofude Ryuu (Dragon with one stroke), and the ones shown here originate from a small studio called Kousyuuya in Nikko, Japan. The studio has seen four generations of master painters who have been creating these stylized dragons for decades.

The process involves carefully painting an ornate dragon head with various flourishes, and then finishing the piece using a giant sumi brush in a carefully orchestrated stroke. The process has much in common with both ink wash painting and calligraphy, and similar to letterforms, the images are often repeated. From the videos you can see certain designs are reused in different colors or with added details. All the videos here start at the fun part where the torso is painted, but you can rewind them a bit to see the creation of the entire painting. (via Cineraria, Iromegane)