All right, now I'm just being silly. Inspired by artist Hanoch Piven (mentioned yesterday), I decided to give myself the challenge of creating a scene using every object in the Ontological Museum Department of Objects, except for the three drawings at the end of the list. My self-imposed rules were that I could rotate the objects, but not reduce or enlarge them in relation to each other, and I had to use the whole object - and not just cut out a piece to use for an arm or a head, for example. I did pretty well with with this; I only cheated with the sun (from the nautical chart), and I used everything except the recipe booklet cover. Yet, that didn't go to waste, either, for I have named my masterpiece "60 Ways to Serve Ham".
I have a couple of links today that I suppose everyone in the world has seen except for me: The terribly, terribly wonderful Fly Guy (from the same lovely genius who gave us Tile Machine), and the wonderfully, wonderfully terrible My Cat Hates You. If you've seen these (and you probably have) - sorry! (but isn't this a nice chance to visit again?). If you haven't, you can send your thanks directly to me in the form of frankincense and myrrh, because I've just about run out. Especially the myrrh; running really low.
And the new kids on the block today are a set of fun little flippy patterns called 52 Pickup.
I've been browsing the vendor artists and their works at Art-o-mat, a great project in which retired cigarette vending machines are converted to vend real live art. The organization (which, interestingly enough, has its home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina), currently has 64 machines across the U.S., and their site has a submission page with details for those who would like to participate. What a great idea.
Now, on to today's patterns: I'm kind of crazy about this group - not so much for the design of any individual tile alone, but because of their possibilities for combining. Here's an example box that will give you an idea of what I mean.
Here's a happy, boppy, Sunday bippy for you, with an example box here. Would you call these "retro"? I didn't put it among the categories for this one, even though I actually do feel that it is... The problem is that it seems that I'm putting that label on everything. Anyway, I think these are fun and bright and bouncy, without being too, too loud.
Other random thoughts... Something that I've been dreaming (not exactly literally) about for a long time is an online application that would allow one to call in a file, and adjust color, saturation and lightness. In other words, you go to a page where you select a gif or jpg image from a drop-down menu, open the file and use slider bars to change those parameters, and then save the image to your drive. Could Flash do something like this, I wonder? I would never be able to program it myself, and I'm sure I couldn't afford to get somebody else to do it, but that is my candy-coated, double-banana-split-with-fudge-sauce dream. Basically, user-defined background tiles. Naturally, people with graphics programs who are accustomed to using them can do this for themselves, but not everyone is in this position, plus it would just be, like, the neatest ! (Please note that I did not say "kewlest" because I'm boycotting "kewl", even in jest. It's in my black book of icky words. "Wicked-good" is still okay though.)
Second random thought, I would very, very much like to do a gallery of guest tiles... I wonder if anyone would be interested in contributing to such a thing? Unlike the thought above, this is actually something I could do myself, and stands as much of a chance of really seeing the light of day as any of my other usual ideas (BlogScarf, anyone? It's still on the table - I just have to take one day to make it happen). So there, I've baited the hook... will I get any bites?
Dropping in quickly here to deliver a new tile couple, "Alberto's Defence'" - tiny, art deco-ish, nesting patterns (I saved in 256 colors, you can resave in 16 for really bitty file sizes), with an example square on this page.
I also just wanted to mention that I ran across a really interesting web collection of portraits of the Big Bee, Ludwig Van Beethoven, with pages and pages of images under the categories "drawings and engravings", "ex libris", "modern", "postcards", "sculptures", and "music". This is really quite fascinating to peruse; check out number 43 under "ex libris", for example - a fairly bizarre combo portrait of Lenin and LvB. And, I'm embarrassed to say that I didn't even know that there are portraits of Beethoven by Andy Warhol and Gustav Klimt, among others...
Ooh! Quick, go see! The featured photographer for A Day in the Life this week is Sophia Tsibikaki from right here in Thessaloniki (Greece) and her photo for "Wednesday" was taken on the square where I live. Look at the second pillar, all the way up at the top of the frame. Do you see a very faint grey smudge (at the top of the building) in the triangular white-space to the right? That's actually my apartment! Hah!
"A Day in the Life" is an interesting project in which different photographers from all over the world are invited to take a photo every day for seven days to be featured in the weekly gallery. You can find Sophia's web site, with more photos and other goodies (like PhotoShop brushes!), here. I found Day in the Life via Dirty Thermos, the site behind the wonderful Signs of Life project ("photographs of signs that transcend their objectivity to reveal our humanity" - completely addictive).
Well, this is great fun: Videogrid, one of the many mind-bending projects at Japanese Freeware, lets you create little random video clips by clicking inside a grid or typing on your keyboard. Kind of hard to explain, so just go do it. On my first try, just completely clicking grid squares at random, my video turned up lots of patterns punctuated by static, and the declaration "FREEWARE", which - yes - pretty much sums things up on this end. Could this be some sort of fancy-schmancy digital fortunetelling device? I called this one "it's all true", and you can load it (from the right menu) to see what I mean (until it gets overwritten, I assume). On my next try, "revolutionary", I typed in "c moon", and I just kind of liked the result, plus - look... there in the second frame, is that something like the edge of the bright full moon, or what? Is this thing magic?
PS: also check out Slow Mosaic, in which you enter a word and view a a slideshow of web images translated into black and white mosaic form. Again, very, very cool. (Yes, I did have to be a meta-mosaic wiseguy by entering the term "mosaic" in the mosaic generator. So sue me. Or, alternatively, cut me up into little pieces and put me back together again.)
From the indefatigable Joe Jenett, an interesting little web project called Colorspeak that allows you to share your comments and read the thoughts of others related to "how we perceive and associate the colors of the so-called safe palette". Just click any of the colors in the grid to see what others have said or add your bit.
I became rather fascinated by trying to isolate the most universally loathed hues, and then possessed by the idea of combining a few of them in a single pattern. I found that these three: 1, 2, 3, (or variations thereof) were pretty roundly disliked, and so started with this as my single point of inspiration when I made "Wallpaper Hippo". I decided that making a very subdued, demure pattern would be cheating, so - yes - it's a wee bit outrageous, but it turned out to be one of those mouthy, brassy patterns that can be lots of fun when used responsibly. Plus I think it does sort of also show that while there is definitely bad color usage, there really isn't such a thing as a "bad color".