During a photography jaunt in New York City yesterday, I caught a glimpse of a video featured in the Macy's 34th Street window. I normally pay scant attention to anything featured in Macy's window displays, but two things (actually three) lured me to this. The first was the plaintive voice of Billie Holiday singing her classic "I'm a Fool To Want You." Well, anything that features Billie's vocal stylings is sure to peak my interest. The second, was seeing an elegant Leica M9 camera briefly in the hands of the beautiful model/actress. As a photographer, that really drew me in! The Leica M9 is considered the finest camera in the world. Beautifully designed, it is the model of enduring taste and refinement. Any commercial that uses a Leica M9 for a product placement knows a thing or two about style! Finally, the alluring cinematography blended it all together, and kept me in front of the window long enough to view the entire commercial a second time.
The commercial is for Chanal No.5 perfume. And I must say, it is beautifully presented. Billie Holliday and a Leica M9 in a Chanel commercial? That is style! Leave it to the French!
With all the trivial events that seem to capture the attention of media outlets today, serious news that deserves closer scrutiny is at times overlooked. A current story in Wired magazine discussed Russia's proposed changes to military doctrine to allow for first strike (preemptive) nuclear weapons attacks in "not only in large-scale, but also in a regional and even a local war.”
On January 17, 2007, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved the minute hand of the Doomsday Clock two minutes closer to midnight, reflecting man's inability to solve the threats posed by nuclear weapons. It is now 5 minutes to midnight. However, that is not the only potential trigger for catastrophic destruction facing mankind according to the Bulletin:
"The dangers posed by climate change are nearly as dire as those posed by nuclear weapons. The effects may be less dramatic in the short term than the destruction that could be wrought by nuclear explosions, but over the next three to four decades climate change could cause irremediable harm to the habitats upon which human societies depend for survival."
Here is a video that highlights three reasons why I miss Albuquerque, New Mexico, my home for close to three years: The Balloon Fiesta, unpretentious, friendly people, and a simpler, healthier lifestyle. Sigh . . . I miss it so!
Let me start by saying that I do not condone graffiti. It is a blight, and shows a lack of respect for neighbor and property. However, as a web designer there is a side of me that continuously judges the aesthetic value of what I see, irregardless of its context. Therefore, I rather enjoyed an article written by a fellow designer who recorded views of street graffiti seen during a vacation in Rio de Janeiro, and in his native Chile. Putting the context aside for the moment, the creativity and execution of many of these public expressions is simply amazing. The use of color and imagination in these works is inspiring. There is a cultural tenor in this work. It reflects the spirit of an emotionally expressive people with buoyant imaginations. As such, I would never mistake it for the typically darker character of graffiti seen in the United States.Read the article, 50 Examples of South American Street Art here. You may find it inspiring as well.