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Small World, Big Bite

The big picture painted through smallness and sprinkles.

Here’s a paradox: Thanksgiving is supposed to be about gratitude for what we have, a kind of humbling appreciation of our blessings, but somehow me manage to turn it into a celebration of gluttony.

Photographer Matthew Carden‘s Small World collection offers a particularly timely poke at the irony. Just a cool bunch of macro photographs on the surface, the project actually digs deeper with a more thoughtful exploration of our dichotomous relationship with food — part necessary play therapy, part unnecessary excess and wastefulness.

Carden is also working with the Slow Food Foundation on a fascinating project to save the Gravenstein Apple, one of the last foods grown by farmers who truly nurture their crop from tree to table.

The collection both captures the labor-of-love production process that puts food on our plates and reminds us of our own smallness in the natural world that we so freely take from.

Plus, we’d just love to slalom down a sprinkles-covered hill.

via Inhabitat

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Photoshop: As Real As It Gets

Art imitates life imitates art, plus 61 cups of paint and a rubber glove.

Typically, Photoshop design is, in one way or another, a mock-up of visuals that could, or do, exist in the real world. But Jakarta-based agency Bates 141 decided to flip this on its head in a project for client software-asil.com.

In an design-imitates-life-imitates-design twist, the crew literally brought the Photoshop CS4 workspace to life.

Photoshop Sweded

We have to appreciate both the strategic freshness and the supreme craftsmanship behind the work — we can’t help wanting to come in and play with the wonderful world of tools and colors.

You can see the behind-the-scenes details of the extremely laborious process at Art Snob Solutions’ corner of Flickr.

via Scary Ideas

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Photography Spotlight: The Obama Phenomenon

What a camera and a chalkboard have to do with the political and cultural heritage of our time.

There’s no question the Obama campaign ignited some powerful human emotions. But it’s hard to grasp just how powerful by simply talking about them from the sidelines of abstraction. That’s why photographer Scout Tufankjian decided to dissect those most visceral, deeply moving elements of the history-making campaign.

Scout Tufankjian: The Early Days

Nearly two years ago, Tufankjian reluctantly took an assignment to shoot an Obama book signing, something she called “a photographer’s nightmare.”Scout Tufankjian: Book Signing

But as soon as Obama walked into the room, the crowd became so transfixed that Tufankjian couldn’t help being intrigued and absorbed by the energy. Inspired, she set to explore this incredible phenomenon by following the candidate along the campaign trail, documenting not the stereotypical glamor moments of high-stakes politics but, rather, the Obama’s guy-next-door everyday, the immense emotional charge of his supporters, the most intimate moments of the Obama family.

Scout Tufankjian: The Early Days

What started as a reluctant assignment evolved into a rich and incredibly profound portrait of America.

Scout Tufankjian: The Early Days

Scout Tufankjian: The Early Days

You can’t help finding yourself absorbed and overwhelmed by Obama’s incredibly powerful presence — powerful not because he is now the leader of the free world, but because it appears to move people — everyday people — deeply, to touch them on a fundamentally human level so uncommon in politics.

Scout Tufankjian: The Road to The Convention

Scout Tufankjian: The Road to The Convention

Somewhere between Beatlemania and The Fallen, the collection captures those big human truths that Obama resonated with so deeply, the very resonance that got him elected in the end.

Scout Tufankjian: The Road to The Convention

Scout Tufankjian: The Road to The Convention

Indeed, it’s hard not to appreciate the strong resemblance, both photographic and cultural, to the incredible social force that was Kennedy captured in The Fallen, particularly in the eerie reminiscence of the images showing Obama’s arrival via the Pennsylvania rail.

Scout Tufankjian: The Road to The Convention

It’s no surprise, really, since one of Tufankjian’s photographs shows a woman answering the question of why she was voting Obama with a simple yet momentous phrase: “The Kennedy Package.”

Perhaps the most powerful element of Tufankjian’s photographic feat is actually just that — his exploration of the vast spectrum of Obama supporters. Armed with a chalkboard and a camera, she simply asked people at Obama rallies to jot down why they were voting for him.

Scout Tufankjian: Obama Supporters

Scout Tufankjian: Obama Supporters

Scout Tufankjian: Obama Supporters

Amazon: Yes We Can
The book, featuring over 200 of Tufankjian’s most impactful photographs from this 2-year-long portrait of the Obama phenomenon, is available on Amazon December 8 — and what better holiday gift than a rich piece of political, cultural and emotional history?

via DPS

Update: Thanks to a friend of Scout’s for pointing out Scout is indeed a she, not a he. The mistake has been fixed and we’re, needless to say, deeply embarrassed to have been even less accurate than GWAP’s infamous Gender Test.

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6 Signs the Apocalypse Cometh

Shortcuts to obesity, paid shamelessness, D.C.’s constitutional right to bitch-slapping, and a potent antidote to it all.

It’s been the year of tectonic shifts, good and bad. A very real recession is upon us, a presidential election just made history in more ways than we can count, and the climate crisis has reached catastrophic proportions. It seems like (almost) everything good and holy is falling apart.

But because the devil’s in the details, we’re seeing the signs of the apocalypse in all sorts of places — some serious, some not, but all a what-have-we-lived-to-see cultural forehead-slapper.

NO NEED TO GET OFF THE COUCH FOR PIZZA

You can now order it from your TiVo or right inside Facebook.

Domino's on TiVo

Because picking up the phone or typing a URL into your browser is too much work.

GUY KAWASAKI SWITCHES TO COMCAST

@guykawasakiCheck.

Yep, we don’t get it either.

POLITICIANS OUTDUMB THEIR ELECTORATE

Elected U.S. officials score 44% on a simple civic knowledge test.

The uninformed commonfolk who elected them score 49%.

PAYPERPOST INFESTS TWITTER

Check.

It’s not how we roll.

POLYGAMISTS BAN GAY MARRIAGE

Chief Proposition 8 strategist Frank SchubertCheck.

Don’t get us wrong, we have a couple of Mormon friends who are among the coolest people we’ve ever met. Which makes it all the harder to reconcile why their kind would try to deny others the basic human right to happiness they’ve been afforded themselves. Some, ahem, multiple times.

BEGGARS FLY PRIVATE JETS

The Big Three CEO'sBig Three auto execs fly private jets — 3 separate ones — from Detroit to D.C. for their hearings before the Senate and House to beg for an additional $25 billion of taxpayer money, get bitch-slapped for ridiculously timed display of corporate excess.

Oh snap.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Yep, the world has gone mad. But we like to think that for every preposterous, shameless, or downright idiotic drop of apocalyptic poison, there’s an even more powerful antidote.

6 SIGNS THE APOCALYPSE GOETH AWAY

  1. Yes We Can.
  2. Yes We Can.
  3. Yes We Can.
  4. Yes We Can.
  5. Yes We Can.
  6. Yes We Can.

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