Over on Los Angeles, I’m Yours today, we have a really great interview with Echo-Park-by-way-of-Olathe-Kansas artist Travis Millard. Travis is a super relaxed and cool guy who creates these trippy, sometimes grimey characters. It was really cool seeing where these all come from and seeing his space, which he shares with artist/girlfriend Mel Kadel. It includes tons of his work (zines, drawings, paintings, drafts, etc.) scattered about and sheds light into the creation and inspiration for many of his pieces. His story is also this ridiculously “classic American” story of a guy who grew up in the Midwest, wanted to become an artist, and moved to the big city to become an artist while busting his balls to get there. It’s super inspirational.
This month we wanted to do something a little more open, and a little more special. To make things more open we decided that we’d tackle Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare’s classic tale. I’m fairly certain that most people on the planet are familiar with the story of a pair of star crossed lovers separated by their families disdain for each other. The story has been covered, parodied and rethought countless times, so now it’s your turn to rethink the cover for the book.
As far as I can tell, the cover has never really been done well. Take a look at these results from Amazon and you’ll see what I mean, scary stuff. So here’s your challenge. Create a cover for the book that feels new and exciting, that would grab people’s attention and make them want to buy the book. Here’s the catch though, you only have two weeks to complete the contest.
Here’s where the special part comes in. As per our usual $100 Amazon gift card, you’ll also get the super rad Nooka Zub Zen-V in black. Since the holidays are coming up soon I thought providing a little something extra might be rad, either an early present for yourself or someone you love.
• Please save your images as JPGs no larger than 800px wide at 72 DPI/RGB mode, there’s no height restrictions (within reason). Feel free to play with the dimensions and have fun with what you make. Making a front and back cover with certainly help your chances, but is not required.
• Label your files “Firstname-Lastname-Romeo-Juliet-Cover.jpg”
• Send all entries to [email protected] with the subject “Re-Covered Books: Romeo and Juliet“. Cut and paste what I wrote there, it’s super easy and it helps me keep track of your entry.
• All entries are due Monday, December 12, 2011 by Midnight, PST.
If there are any other questions feel free to leave them in the comments. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with and be sure to tell your friends/classmates/pets to participate. Good luck and have fun!
While wandering around the internet, searching for information about teepees, I came across the work of Ian Allen. Just to be clear, his work has nothing to do with teepees, other than his taking a photo of a teepee-inspired structure on the side of the road in South Dakota. Instead, his work is photos of buildings, people and landscapes. Glancing through his portfolio is a little bit of geography quiz, with photos taken from South Dakota to Germany to rural China. Allen is based in Brooklyn, so much of his work happens there, although he is a west coast transplant, having grown up in Portland. His work is great; you should check it out.
Jarno-Erik Faarinen is a musician and producer from Finland who records under the name of Fotoshop. The other day he contacted me to let me know that he’d just released his debut album Lifeforms, and I’ve been listening to it ever-since! Faarinen’s sound sits somewhere between M83 and Washed Out, and although he channels a number of familiar reference points he manages to create something truely unique and exciting along the way.
The album’s opener Too Little, Too Late demonstrates exactly what Fotoshop does so well. His combination of vocals, beats and disoriented synths layer together to construct a slow-building anthem that holds a terrific synth-beat that just rips right through the whole track. Faarinen’s vocals are particularly nice, adding a shoegazer effect to the whole thing. Lifeforms is available for download from Fotoshop’s bandcamp page and it comes highly recommended.
I saw over the weekend that there was a new Modeselektor track which featured Thom Yorke so I figured I’d share it. The track is called Shipwreck and feels like a more refined version of what Thom Yorke would have created. It’s a pretty rad song, but not necessarily the best thing I’ve ever heard.
What is cool is the video, directed by Tony “Truand” Datis, who’s done some pretty rad work. The story is centered around a kid who’s scavenging a bunch of batteries in an apocalyptic world. There’s some pretty rad imagery smattered throughout it and the cinematography is really well done. There’s a great sense of mystery to the whole thing, a lot of random but beautiful imagery that interprets the song rather interestingly.