Punk Rock Japanese Pop Art


Japanese artist Shohei Otomo (aka Hakuchi) shows us that his motherland has a rockin' pop culture like no other. Using simple ballpoint pen, he mixes old and new school images with his references to the Samurai, Geisha girls, and the Yakuza. Above all else, one thing is certain, Otomo does not hold anything back with these extremely detailed illustrations.

Hakuchi's website

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Exotic Lamp Shades - Chic Velvet Lamps by &'COSTA


These exotic lamp shades by &'COSTA will spice up your interiors with a serious dose of style. The chic Velvet Lamps aren’t made of velvet at all, but rather their hand-made shades feature cut leather and felt from Kvadrat in a most-unique design. The shade’s leather exterior has artful cut-outs that reveal peeks of a vibrant pink interior, and it’s all set on a sleek, satin-finish stainless steel base. This modern lamp collection comes in tabletop and sconce designs, as well as floor and ceiling designs available in three different sizes to accommodate large and small spaces. The white finish is a chic, modern look, while the black-and-pink shades are pure drama! More info is available by visiting &'COSTA.
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FOC & IRIS collaborate on Heineken promotional campaing

For the launch of Heineken’s brand new premium STR bottle, creative agency IRIS came to FOC to help design & engineer a truly magical experience. To present the aluminium bottle to Heinekens stakeholders across the globe a suitable packing was needed. Since the newly designed bottle includes UV-sensitive ink the goal of the packaging was to showcase this in a mind-blowing experience.
An all black 3D-printed capsule was designed around the bottle, stuffed with all kind of witty technology to make the capsule interact when opened & closed. This capsule was split into two halves which are held together by a magnetic lock. When opened, UV light is automatically activated, revealing the otherwise invisible UV print.
The trendy, minimalist design is a reflection of the product it is designed to house. Inside the capsule, ambient light surrounds the sunken STR bottle. Outside the capsule, the Heineken logo is pillow embossed to act as a stand. The STR icon remains lit for a short period of time when the capsule is closed.
design: pascal duval at iris amsterdam
photography: bart oomes at witman kleipool
postproduction: patrick de bas at dog post production
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Now You Can Do 3-D Printing Out of Sawdust

The rapid-prototyping juggernaut Freedom of Creation is out with what it calls "the most ecological way to create products": sawdust.
Used to be, if you wanted to make a detailed shape out of wood -- for a nice little fruit bowl, say -- you had to carve it by hand using a big chunk of timber, which is a.) time-consuming b.) expensive and c.) bad for the environment. (Think of all the scraps you end up with.) Now, you can just pull it out of a printer.
The Dutch rapid-prototyping outfit Freedom of Creation (FOC) announced today that it has added wood -- one of the planet’s most abundant natural resources -- to its suite of 3-D printing materials. Mind you, this isn’t wood resembling anything you might buy at Home Depot. It’s sawdust that, when mixed with a “binder” (basically glue), forms something approximating the look of real wood and the strength of MDF. FOC calls it their “Tree-D printer.” Cute.
The big selling point here is that it's gentler on Mother Nature than the materials rapid prototyping typically resorts to, like plastics and metals. Sawdust is, after all, a waste product. For the fruit basket shown here, FOC sourced sawdust from local wood workshops that would’ve tossed the stuff otherwise. As FOC’s Brian Garrett tells Co.Design: “It was a good deal since this way they also got their workshops cleaned for free.”
There are limitations. Though the products do look "woody," they don't quite replicate the original wood, owing to discoloration that results when the binder hardens. What's more, FOC can only print in teak and mahogany. Garrett explains: "Balsa and other light wood types have not been possible yet, because they are so light that spreading equal layers is still a problem. We are currently working on improving this with using different types of re-coaters."
Still it's a promising development in the field of 3-D printing, which bills itself as a paragon of sustainability but, as industry insiders tell it, hasn't always lived up to the hype. FOC seems particularly excited about the formal and aesthetic possibilities "Tree-D" printing affords designers. “There is no wood carver on earth who could possibly make such complex things and especially with this kind of fine detail,” Garrett says. Well, that might be a slight exaggeration.


Here you can see a comparison between a gray Laser Sintered Macedonia tray to a teak tray. The accuracy, which we have been able to create is quite astonishing with a very modest budget.

The strength of the objects is very similar to MDF, but naturally the complexity of the geometries we are able to produce is on a totally different level than compared to simple pressed wood. The process still takes about twice as much time compared to Selective Laser Sintering.
The digital 3D computer file we use to manufacture the Macedonia Fruit Tray.

The 3D printing process of the Macedonia tray in wood, picture shows the base material, sawdust and a finished layer of the Macedonia tray.

Cleaning process of sawdust of the tray after production.

We are currently looking at partnerships to further develop and commercialize our Tree-D printing technology. Later this year we plan to launch our first interior products using this technology. If you are interested in partnering with Freedom Of Creation please contact: michiel@freedomofcreation.com

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Spacecraft Sees Earth Eclipse the Fiery Sun

This spectacular image of the half-blocked sun was captured March 29 when the orbiting Solar Dynamics Observatory slipped behind the Earth.
SDO shoots dazzling photos and videos of the sun from 22,000 miles above Earth’s surface. Twice a year, the spacecraft enters an eclipse season when the Earth blocks its view for up to 72 minutes a day.
Unlike the sharp shadow seen during a lunar eclipse, the Earth’s shadow has a ragged edged because of its variable atmosphere. Spots where the atmosphere is denser block more sunlight than spots where it is thinner. Brighter spots on the sun can penetrate the atmosphere, too, sending beautiful tendrils through Earth’s shadow.

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Chevrolet Mi-Ray Is a ‘Future’ We Can Embrace

General Motors’ design center in Seoul, South Korea, has unveiled its first concept car, and it is a “future” we definitely can embrace. This carbon-bodied, aluminum-framed plug-in hybrid is one slick ride we’d like to see the General build.
The Mi-Ray, Korean for “future,” showcases a lot of the advanced tech General Motors already offers in vehicles like the Chevrolet Volt. It’s making its debut at the Seoul Auto Show and almost certainly will be a star of the show.
The styling celebrates Chevrolet’s 100th anniversary and pays homage to its racing heritage, looking back at cars like the 1963 Monza SS and various Corvettes while also looking ahead. We love the race-inspired scissor doors. The angular bodywork, also inspired by fighter jets, is made carbon fiber and carbon reinforced plastic.
Ditto the interior, which is awash in aluminum, leather and “liquid metal surfaces,” along with a lot more carbon fiber. Push the Start button and the instrument cluster rises from the steering column. Sounds cool but seems superfluous.
The car rides on an aluminum chassis and huge aluminum and carbon-fiber wheels. The front wheels are propelled by a pair of 15-kilowatt (20-horsepower) motors that draw power from a tiny 1.6-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery. Range? Recharge time? Who knows. GM didn’t say.
The motors are for tooling around town. Stomping on the accelerator awakens the mid-mounted 1.5-liter turbo’d four that drives the rear wheels.
GM claims the car is good for 60 mpg city and 63 highway. Odds are we’ll never see the Mi-Ray in showrooms, but GM says it “points to the future of Chevrolets around the globe.”
Images: General Motors

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Salento Two old buildings

Two old buildings, uninhabited for years, leaning against each other in rural landscape of Italian Salento. Thick stone walls that witnessed 200 years of history, deeply rooted into surrounding nature... simple, strong beauty and authenticity that captivated an architect Luca Zanaroli instantly. Discovering the place together with his wife Silvia, they were both overwhelmed by immediate sensation of feeling at home... and started thinking about moving in.
In his renovation project, Luca aimed to reveal genius loci of the place, keeping intact the patina of time and balancing contrasts between rural and urban elements. He "contaminated" the countryside atmosphere with the use of materials and decorative objects of city style: a mix of cold and warm surfaces such as steel and fabric, contemporary design objects contrasted with artworks bought from local artisans.

The family, inspired by the life of previous inhabitants, understood the meaning of direct, everyday relationship with the earth. They decided to recover physical contact with the ground, for example by replacing the beds with futons and furnishing only with the most necessary, simple objects.
Do you think these interiors somehow express Wabi-sabi idea, the beauty of imperfection?

en: Les bulles de Miluccia
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