Dedicated to the integral role of the Alaskan salmon to its native habitat, 'Alaska the Nutrient Cycle' beautifully chronicles the life of the fish as it enters freshwater, at which point it stops feeding and devotes its energy to mating. After spawning, the salmon dies and becomes food for other animals, and their nutrients become a part of the Alaskan forest and the sea. Watch the beautiful video below.
In his collaboration with the Global Footprint project, designer Dominic Wilcox was given free reign to design any kind of shoe he wanted. What he imagined was heavily inspired by The Wizard of Oz, and the ruby slippers that allowed Dorothy to return to Kansas. Except Wilcox's shoes won't bring the wearer home because of good magic, but because of modern satellite science. That is, Wilcox's oxfords, complete with blood red detailing, brings you home via GPS. The left show points the wearer in the correct direction, while the right shoe is the progress bar. From the designer:
"After uploading your required destination to the shoes via a piece of custom made mapping software and a USB cable, the GPS, which is embedded in the heel, is activated by a heel click. It then communicates to the wearer via a ring of LED lights to point in the required direction. The shoe with the GPS wirelessly communicates with the right shoe that has a progress bar of lights to show how close you are to the destination."
Created by PES for Showtime, 'The Deep' is a short stop-animation fim made to explore the underworld –underwater world, that is– using basic tools to represent the creatures of the sea. It sounds weird, but it totally works, and then you'll never be able to unsee how many all your pliers and monkey wrenches look exactly like fish.
Yan is a young father and a modern-day cheesemaker living in Burgundy, France. For years, Yan worked in the pharmaceutical industry, but took a sabbatical to work on a farm for a while. When the farmer asked him to return, Yan was inspired to think deeply about the path he wanted his life to take. Yan chose a new life that was also centuries old, in the French countryside, where he finds that a true appreciation for his craft has allowed him to live life in the moment. Watch below:
In response to the personal difficulties of dyslexia he faced as a child, Japanese media artist Yuri Suzuki created Looks Like Music, a fascinating alternative to the western style of musical notation. In fact, Suzuki didn't even realize he was dyslexic until college, which then inspired him to design "systems that don't require words to explain. Think iOS instead of Unix." Looks Like Music works by using little robotic trains that move along a hand-drawn track. Each of five cars is responsible for a certain kind of sound– there's the drumcar and melodycar, for example. If the color is dark, the pitch is low, if the color is bright, the train plays a higher pitched note. Suzuki's visual approach to music is a boon to dyslexic musicians everywhere, but has the added bonus of making music more accessible to children, as Suzuki's method is more hands-on and quite easy to understand. Suzuki hopes eventually to put forth a Kickstarter campaign that will make his musical training project available to the masses.
A young filmmaker by the name of Jack Fisher put together this visual homage to the city of Bath, which was indeed originally a spa called Aquae Sulis, with baths built around local hot springs. The city's history is ancient, and Edgar the Peaceful was crowned King of England in 973 at Bath Abbey. Ancient architecture stands out proudly amidst modern shops and university students that frankly, look a little out of place. In fact, I'd prefer that both visitors and residents of the tiny town, with a population of 80,000, adhere to a strict dress code à la Sophia Coppola's take on Marie Antoinette– but of course, I can't enforce that.
Alex Chinneck makes a very public display of architectural art by literally peeling the front wall of a four-storey home in Kent, UK, and replacing it with this curving front, exposing the dilapidated interior. Now, the long-abandoned structure has been transformed into a public work of art, bringing in donations of materials and services from several different companies, and the Arts Council of England.
'Tashlich' is the story of a man who embarks on a quest to cleanse himself of lasting guilt, by borrowing from an ancient Jewish tradition of the same name. In Hebrew, the word Tashlich means 'to cast,' and those full of sorrow are meant to cast away their sins and regrets to the sea, never to be burdened again. Each person tosses out pieces of bread that represent their troubles, and the ritual is done in a group for greater support. This film comes to us from cinematographer Gregory Wilson.
No matter how old you are, sometimes people come into your life and leave a mark. That's the sweet premise of this short film, 'Floating in My Mind' from animation student Hélène Leroux. I also love that it feels like an abridged version of the movie Up, which follows a similar story, but made me (and probably all of you) sob uncontrollably at certain points in the film.
For the last year, Ian Hey has worked as a field assistant at Halley VI, the British Antarctic Survey Research Station. His footage of the mysterious landscape, which few humans have ever attempted to study in depth, is a mixture of timelapses, video footage, and still photography. It's incredibly beautiful, and totally worth the thirteen minutes. Oh, and when he's not exploring Antarctica for us, Ian is a climbing and mountaineering instructor!