Davd MacDowell’s focus lies in “Childhood Fantasy and our Contemporary Cultural Nightmare” as a nation consumed by popular culture.
Sam Alive is a New York city-based photographer who has truly aced the digital lens of an iPhone. His project “Through the Phone” features stunning landscapes, urban cityscapes and natural sceneries all captured with a mobile camera.
The key to Sam’s work is the juxtaposition between the sharp and detailed view presented on the mobile screen and the blurry unrecognizable background behind it. To mock the late influx of smartphones in our lives, artist takes these wide breathtaking vistas of sea shores, valleys and skyscrapers, and crams them into a tiny 4-inch display. Thus, limiting the viewer’s vision and making a good point about the change in our perception.
“Life is like an adventure, because you never know what is going to happen next; you only have one life, all we can do until we die is live everyday to the best of our ability. As long as I am still alive, I will continue to take pictures everyday of my life.”
Sam started his project “Through the Phone” two years ago and already had a chance to travel and take photographs all over Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong, San Francisco and New York. In his Tumblr blog, he promises to keep on traveling and updating his project with more captivating shots through the phone. (via designboom)
A beautiful of collection of mixed media illustrations by Jacob Escobedo including a bunch of artworks for The Shins as well as six illustrations for the June Science Fiction issue of The New Yorker that illustrated Ray Bradbury’s last published story. The New Yorker issue was released one day before Bradbury’s death.
A drive in movie theater and its silver screen. The scene looks real: parked cars, dim-lights, sunset and in the background a celebrity playing her best role. Andrew Valko is fooling us. The scenery could have been mistaken for a photography of a painting representing a celebrity. The artist is used to depict fragmentary narratives in hyper realistic paintings. Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, Amanda Seyfried, Angelina Jolie or Anthony Hopkins are taking part of this set up.
Andrew Valko creates a glowing contrast between the portraits and the surroundings with details meticulously painted. Playing with the flare and shadows of the street and car lights accentuates the expressions on the faces. Each painting represents a different parking lot with a different background. The feeling of nostalgia due to the context is palpable. There’s a will to go forward, represented by the contemporary actors. Yet the old school drive-in scene is taking us back to the past.
In the artist’s paintings, our eyes take turn alternatively as viewers and voyeurs. We start off as being the viewers, as if we were participating in the scene, comfortably watching from our car. And we quickly become the voyeurs; standing afar from the whole scene, watching the viewers watching the movie. This juxtaposition is interesting in the work. Clearly Andrew Valko manipulates us until the end. Therefore we could investigate and go as fas as wondering if the use of Hollywood stars is a pretext to entice us into the paintings. (via Design Boom)
Adam Voorhes, a photographer residing in Texas, has released an amazing book documenting 100 extremely rare, damaged, and malformed human brains. This book, called Malformed: Forgotten Brains of the Texas State Mental Hospital, was released this November through PowerHouse books. As Voorhes’ work shows, there is an aesthetic beauty to the contours and shape of a brain that only add to the intrinsic mystery surrounding them. Through a twist of fate, Voorhes gained access to a medical niche and has built a body of work that will prove to be historically priceless. His project created a detailed photographic archive of the brains that has led to a new, revitalized interest from the medical community. Scientific journals have voiced intrigue and the researchers at the University of Texas at Austin are now producing MRI’s of these brains, which will be displayed in their new medical school.
Voorhes explains how he came into this subject:
“ I had been sent to the University of Texas’ Animal Resources Center to borrow a brain to photograph for a magazine article. I was shown through a laboratory into a storage closet filled with human brains stacked in jars from floor to ceiling, two rows deep. All told, there were more than 100 rare specimens extracted from former patients at Texas’ state mental hospital in Austin, and all displayed distinct abnormalities. Each jar had been labeled with a date, an observation in archaic Latin and a case number.I took the brain I’d been assigned and returned to my studio to work, but I quickly became preoccupied with the vision of this decaying collection. I wanted to know more about the donors, their quality of life and experiences. The gravity of what I’d seen haunted me. The thought of cataloguing the collection and preserving it with my camera became an obsession.Eventually, my photography team and I were granted access to the lab. Uninterrupted and unsupervised, we donned respirators and heavy gloves. Over the course of two days in the locked research facility, we documented the collection. The history of these brains remained unknown, however. Although the descriptive text on some of the jar labels had faded or worn away, most had corresponding case numbers. Those case numbers referenced medical records, and those records became my secondary obsession.In over my head, I collaborated with journalist Alex Hannaford to track down the story behind the brains. As he pored through archaic documents and tracked every available lead, he uncovered not only the history of the collection, but also the unfortunate loss of nearly half the original specimens. Our hope for this project is to help preserve the remaining portion and foster greater interest in its beauty, historical importance and medical value.” (via Slate)
In photographer Randy Scott Slavin’s series, Alternative Perspectives, he takes ordinary landscapes and turns them into topsy-turvy, mind-bending sights. At any moment, these panoramic shots make the world appear like it’s going to fold in on itself. Slavin captures all types of terrain, including the red rocks of the Phoenix desert, the beaches in Miami, and the skyscrapers of New York City. These places are transformed in a surreal and psychedelic way.
Salvin takes approximately 100 photos for each image. While he can shoot a scene in less than 10 minutes, it may him hours or days to edit what you see here. The process is a lot of trial and error for the photographer as he figures out what time of day and season is best.
Salvin’s photos not only play with the orientation of the image, but reference time as well. Their circular motion is reminiscent of a wormhole or water spinning down a drain. Both imply a passage, whether it be in years or minutes. (Via Fast Company)
Photographer Peter Menzel and writer Faith D’Aluisio (who is also his wife) spent three years traveling to 30 countries to document what different people eat over the course of a single day. The resulting photographs are compiled into a book, What I Eat: Around the World in 80 Diets. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Menzel’s fascination with our relationship to food. Previously, we’ve featured his series about a week’s worth of groceries for families around the world.
Each image of What I Eat is accompanied by a detailed breakdown of the meals. The couple featured diverse profiles such as a Japanese sumo wrestler, a Maasai herdsman, an Arctic hunter, a Tibetan yak herder, and a Bangladeshi factor seamstress.
All of the diets, of course, vary by location and availability of food, but also profession. Shashi Kanth (pictured above), an AOL call center worker, relies on fast-food meals, candy bars, and coffee to keep him going throughout the long nights as he talks to Westerners about their technical issues. This stands in stark contrast to Bruce Hopkins (also pictured above), a Bondi Beach lifeguard in Sydney, New Whales, Australia. He eats moderately and hardly ever enjoys fast food or alcohol. (Via Amusing Planet)