Friday, August 29, 2008

Master and Margarita - Blood Dance
Or if you don't want to watch the whole thing, but just go straight to the dance -it's here. (warning, nudity, weirdness and a lot of feathers)

The Master and Margarita (English subtitles). Part 7 (4 / 5)
Because autumn has begun here and I am beginning to get into a Gothic/Halloween type of mood. Plus anyone who does not know Master and Margarita needs to.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

New prints

We are doing a whole heap of new prints right now - based in part on all the feedback we got on Aeclectic Forum at the beginning of the year about the kinds of things people want. They are all old images that we have cleaned and altered to make them suitable for fabric printing.So far we have ONE of each - we did these as a try-out. But we're making more now and should have plenty in stock in a week or so.

Fairy tale satin and pure silk tarot bag or drawstring pouch. Arthur Rackham illustration.

Fairy tale satin and pure silk tarot bag or drawstring pouch. Arthur Rackham illustration.

Fairy tale satin and pure silk tarot bag or drawstring pouch. Arthur Rackham illustration.

All - and some other new ones that I'll save for the next post - are only on Etsy for now. Until we have the more standard colours ready it doesn't make sense to put them on baba-store.We're also working on some of our own images, but these may not see the light of day for some months. Basically we have a large project to do over the autumn - it all sort of arose and grew and suddenly became quite a big task. It's on commission from a publisher and should be extremely interesting. So - we thought we would put some time into really getting a nice, big selection of bags (and - cushions - more of that in a week or two) ready for autumn, and then we can settle down and do our own illustrations. A nice balance I think.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

On "pseudo modernism" - or the places that venture capital blogs can take you

I'm still putting my "how to make a creative business work" blog together - bit by bit. It's taking a while because I feel that I need to work out the focus and form I want. I'm like this when I write books too - it takes me ages to get the structure all mapped out and then filling in the details of content is quite fast. I also can't get the banner right - true pathos yes? Anyway, I was considering whether to put a sidebar link to this New York venture capital blog by Fred Wilson: It's good stuff, although ironically one of the things I want to say myself is that the assumption that investment from outsiders is a good thing is very questionable. It became fashionable in the dot-com era and now it's far too often taken for granted and the desire - if not the actuality - of "big investment" probably wrecks more businesses than it helps. More on that in the new blog. Reading the avc blog, I found a discussion of the new "psuedo modernism" - now who would have thought it? Anyway, as you know, I totally bore anyone reading this blog from time to time by going off on a monologue about where design is headed. I that context, this is worth a read, though it is awfully self-consciously academic in a way that reminds me of why I left academia. It's not that I don't respect this way of writing - just that I found it a bit stifling myself and when I took to putting flip-book corners on my thesis I realised that maybe I was more cut-out for something else. This article would benefit from flip-book corners I think. As would my blog of course - if I could work out how to do them. ____________ What’s Post Postmodernism? I believe there is more to this shift than a simple change in cultural fashion. The terms by which authority, knowledge, selfhood, reality and time are conceived have been altered, suddenly and forever. There is now a gulf between most lecturers and their students akin to the one which appeared in the late 1960s, but not for the same kind of reason. The shift from modernism to postmodernism did not stem from any profound reformulation in the conditions of cultural production and reception; all that happened, to rhetorically exaggerate, was that the kind of people who had once written Ulysses and To the Lighthouse wrote Pale Fire and The Bloody Chamber instead. But somewhere in the late 1990s or early 2000s, the emergence of new technologies re-structured, violently and forever, the nature of the author, the reader and the text, and the relationships between them.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Walk in Prague - part two

I think we stopped at the Frank Gehry building yesterday? But I left out one more facade: Sorry, not very clear - it was a high facade and the light was going - but you get the idea. There is lots more behind the cut. In fact, there is still a lot that I haven't at all posted yet. But enough is enough for one day maybe? There are evenings in Prague when there is something around every corner that visually and emotionally rocks you. You can get drunk on it. Just over the road we came across a large wedding on a boat. Russian and pretty over the top. As we got in front of the boat, "Hava Nagila" was in full swing. I liked the lady with what seemed to be her grandson, dancing away. If you'd like a bit of soundtrack with that - and I recommend it to get the flavour - here is a particularly perky version: Some of the style on show. Sort of - well, Russian businessman's woman. A distinctive look but fun on a beautiful evening Okay, so, having got the distinct feeling from the bouncers that too much photography would not be welcome, on we went. This building is a large art gallery - city run. They have a new exhibition about 1968 which I think I will try to get to: You just HAVE to have the Prague Castle shot really. I know it's a cliche, but almost every time I see it against the river like this I am grateful I live here. Deep breath. Okay, I will squeeze in one or two more. As we headed into Mala Strana I remembered we had no bread, so we stopped into Cafe Savoy: Where I took a really bad and shaky picture of a corner of the famous ceiling - well, I didn't want to use flash and piss off all the people having their dinner - that's my excuse. One day soon I'll take a decent picture of the whole thing and post it. Meantime you can see it here - In Prague, you can have a visual feast just buying a loaf of bread. Ridiculous really.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

An evening in Prague

So yesterday we just left everything and went off for dinner at the best Thai here. Nice food, nice people - though the place was empty (then again, it was early). Afterwards we decided to walk home - about a one-hour leisurely walk and as we had the camera, here is an impression what a summer walk through Prague is like. It's long, it's romantic (in the sense of Victorian Romanticism) and it's probably sentimental in parts. There are also lots of pictures. So the first half is behind this cut. With more to follow tomorrow. It began with walking past this facade - on the riverside. We've walked past it many times before, but never photographed, so finally we did. Then it got a bit out of hand as we turned and walked down one of the most outrageously Art Nouveau streets in Prague - This one (below) was amusing, as all along the facade the shields above the window were just plain shields. But on this one the artist had turned one into an animal head. Actually, there are loads of these jokes on Prague facades (my favourite has to be the Puss in Boots in Old Town who is in a state of, er, considerable excitement). You just have to learn to look up and look closely. Not much to say - except that this is just a "take your breath away" building. To top it all a pair of sparrowhawks were nesting behind an Art Nouveau depiction of "Night" next door. Hawks with aspirations I assume. What a great building to house a Gender Studies centre (below). I mean, you too would love to have androgynous cherubs kissing passionately on YOUR Gender Studies centre, wouldn't you? And then it was round the corner and there was the Frank Gehry "Dancing House". And a bride standing under it: So - that was the first half of the walk. The bit I'll talk about tomorrow is a little different. Think the wedding scene from The Godfather.