This is a documentary about making music, from instrument making to playing to mixing, mastering, and listening. It was sponsored by Sony although there are only a few plugs in it for Sony gear, the rest is a variety of musicians and music producers talking about how they make and share music. It’s about an hour and 14 minutes long.
The comparison to photography is interesting:
Music: one needs a great song, well played on a decent instrument, well recorded and mastered and played on a decent audio player to channel what the musician laid down.
Photography: one needs a great image, well recorded with decent equipment, well processed and seen on a decent screen or a decent print to channel what the photographer saw and recorded.
In the photography world I like to think of Ansel Adams: he chose great subject matter (Yosemite), used a view camera (big negative, high definition), stopped down to small apertures (more detail), used filters (to get the dramatic look he wanted), and he took great care in developing his negatives and making his prints. If you’ve ever seen a large Ansel Adams print, in person, it’s a thing of wonder and you can feel that care in the print, very much like these musicians and producers talking about the care they take in making and sharing music.
We’ve been missing John Oliver the past month but he’s back and thank god. In this piece he takes on Donald Trump’s proclivity to exaggerate and lie. It’s brilliant including the ending.
Brilliant, the best explaination of this I’ve ever seen.
“Have you ever come across an oddly stretched image on the sidewalk, only to find that it looks remarkably realistic if you stand in exactly the right spot? These sidewalk illusions employ a technique called anamorphosis — a special case of perspective art where artists represent 3D views on 2D surfaces. So how is it done? Fumiko Futamura traces the history and mathematics of perspective.”
[via The Kid Should See This]
Apple’s full length ad for their new wireless earbuds: AirPods that work with all Apple devices (iPhone, iPad, Mac). Apple’s advertising is on a roll recently, some great stuff.
I wish these things (and all Apple stock earbuds) fit in my ears. Alas, they don’t. I’ve been using Bose noise cancelling headphones for many years and recently upgraded to the Bose QC 35 wireless model. Excellent product and works well for me (music, phone, movies). Still, I wish I could use the AirPods, they certainly are more portable.
BLOOMS 2: Strobe Animated Sculptures Invented by John Edmark from Pier 9 on Vimeo.
John Edmark is a sculptor and Blooms is a series of 3D printed sculptures designed to animate while spinning under a strobe light.
The video and background music are quite amazing. Zoom it out for full effect.
Apple’s new ad for the iPhone 7 Plus’s portrait mode. It’s a terrific ad, very well done: catching the girl’s various expressions, the variety of people, and the music.
It’s quite amazing what folks are doing with smartphones of all kinds these days, and this feature (multiple lenses, shallow depth of field in reality or as an effect) looks like it’s pushing things even further. I have an iPhone 6s but still prefer my cameras to shooting with it for “serious” work but it’s mostly because I find the controls easier to deal with, less about image quality which is saying something.
The reason this particular construction project was so well documented was that it was Rockefeller Center.
No one, not even the photographers, is wearing safety equipment.
The subjects and the photographer are unknown, but the photo is one of the most iconic of all time. With Central Park in the background, 11 men casually have lunch 800 feet above Manhattan. In this short piece by Time Magazine, archivist Christine Rouselle explores the story behind this historic image.
The magicians, Penn & Teller Burn a Flag in the White House. This is an outtake from the television series, The West Wing which was on the air from 1999 through 2006. If you watch the entire thing, right up until the end, you’ll understand how a surface understanding of the American bill of rights isn’t enough. It’s brilliant writing by Aaron Sorkin and no doubt others.
This outtake is circulating because Donald Trump has stated that Americans who burn the American flag should have their citizenship revoked, stepping on the first amendment of the US Constitution which guarantees the freedom of speech and expression, and the US Supreme Court has stated that that includes flag burning.
This has been an interesting and well-studied legal matter my entire life and it came to a head during the Vietnam War protests in the 1960’s and 1970’s. Someone assuming the highest office in the US ought to have at least considered this but it seems that Donald Trump has not, or, if he has, believes that the President can sidestep the US Constitution.
These are the kinds of things that are frightening many Americans about our current political situation.
My friend and neighbor Christine Owen apprenticed in Japan with this potter, Ueno San. This process especially the wood fire piece of the video, is what my neighbor Joy Brown does every year in her anagama kiln in Kent, the next town west of me. Both Christine and I not only put pieces in her fires (the kiln is huge), we help fire it. The kiln takes a week to load, a week to fire, and a week to cool.
This is a terrific process video on ceramics in general and what the Japanese tradition looks like in particular.
Apollo 17 was the last manned mission to the moon in NASA’s Apollo program. It took place in 1972. No doubt we’ll go again at some point although at the moment its tough to imagine any single country or the world getting focussed enough to make it happen.
Some of us are old enough to remember the Mercury program and John Glenn orbiting the earth, the Gemini program and various astronauts doing the first space walks, and then Apollo and the moon landings. All of that was over in 1972, and then we had Skylab, the Space Shuttle, and now the International Space Station.
This entire arc of space exploration is incredible but nothing has caught my imagination like the moon landings. I’ll never forget Walter Cronkite taking his glasses off and looking awestruck as he announced that Neil Armstrong was on the moon. This video brings some of that feeling back. Zoom it out, its well worth it.