Food for thought‘[...] do not think that good design can make a poor product good, whether the product be a machine, a building, a promotional brochure or a business man. But [...] good design can materially help make a good product reach its full potential. In short, [...] good design is good business.’
Thomas J. Watson Jr., IBM CEO

The Ancient Way – Koi Klub trainers

December 9, 2007, 1:50 AM

Great animation for Koiklub (made by Wu Yué & Yoske Nishiumi):

BIG KOI "The Ancient Way"
Uploaded by Koiklub_Berlin

(via designboom)

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COMMENTS: 2

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Icon design

November 13, 2007, 1:22 PM

A construction site warning, showing what icon design means and should express according to asian designers:

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(via etienne mineur)

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Kashiwa Sato – Japan is another planet

October 21, 2007, 9:22 PM

This must be it, japanese are aliens. Otherwise they wouldn’t come up with crazy stuff like this, website, work, everything. Very interesting how each photo has its own color-strip presented. Take a look at Kashiwa Sato.

Their eye-popping site:
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and some of their work:
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(via Pingmag)

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Tekkon Kinkreet – the savage beauty of innocent life

October 13, 2007, 3:50 AM

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Listening to the beautiful soundtrack, made by Plaid, I would’ve liked to write about the sensations Tekkon Kinkreet gives you. But I can’t, and I really shouldn’t. Because Tekkon Kinkreet does what movies should do (at least in theory): it touches you. I really felt the movie gave me in the end a small part of what Shiro was talking about, “Anshin! Anshin!” – meaning peace of mind, happiness.

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I highly recommend it to anyone who likes to “feel” while watching a movie. And even if the story will fail to touch you, the visuals will surely blow you away with their insanely detailed city scapes, streets, buildings, and with its wonderful colors.

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There are also the wonderful main charachters, Shiro (meaning white), contrasting with his “aniki” (older brother, but not necessarily by blood), Kuro (meaning black), both full of life in thei own way, complex, completeing each other.

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Pingmag writes about the visuals, Catsuka posts some nice hi-q screens, SuperHeroType interviews the director (non-japanese, if you can believe) and highly talented Audrey Kawasaki shows us scans from Tekkon Kinkreet Art Book, just pure eyecandy, if you needed any more proof that Japan is ages in front of everybody else when it comes to animation.

later edit:
Some time ago I was reading about Paprika and Tekkon, and reviews said that Satoshi Kon’s Paprika is better, making Tekkon look like something incomplete, with only great visuals, but little substance. How wrong they were… While Kon’s Paprika is beautiful, raising many questions about human’s psyche and dreams, Tekkon is way ahead, dealing with human emotions, and not in a rational way, like Paprika, but in a personal, introspective, i-feel-it kind of way.

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Ninjas all over the place

September 30, 2007, 2:13 AM

Loads of ninjas doing all sorts of stuff, from fighting, killing, training to cooking, floating and dancing, all in Scott Campbell‘s wall “scroll”. I’d definitely hang this on my wall (too bad it’s 150$ :(, but I guess art is worth paying for) – click for larger version:

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It’s part of an exihibition called “Ninja Show: Revenge Of The Ninja 2”
Here are some delightfull close-ups:

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Vs

August 30, 2007, 1:41 AM

Funny animation about some samurai playing some sort of “king of the hill”

(via Feel Me)

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Obluda (Monster)

August 21, 2007, 4:15 PM

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Talking about “Where the wild things are”, here is another gem, “Obluda”, a story contained in the 37th episode of Monster (the anime). Monster is one of the best written mangas, one of the best anime there are nowadays, truly a great watch. This little story is yet another thing that sends shivers up my spine (especially the melodic, feminine voice, saying slowly “bari bari, cusha cusha, baki baki, gokun!”). It is a lot more mature than “Where the wild things are” and it could be compared to the way Mamoru Oshii reinterprets “Little Red Riding Hood” (Perrault’s version, not Grimms’) in his Jin-Roh movie (another classic anime).

I don’t know if the “Obluda” book actually exists or if it was made up by Naoki Urasawa (Monster’s creator), but it seems they were selling it along with one of the Monster dvds in France. I searched a lot, I’d really like to buy it, so if you find anything at all about it, please tell me :)

Later update (24 May 2014)

The book can be found & bought by searching for the ISBN 9784091790279 or 4091790275 (Amazon UK have it, maybe others too). Be advised, it’s in Japanese and the details are for the lenticular, hardcover version (there’s a paperback version too, it seems). You can find the translations for the stories on the Obluda Monster Wiki page.

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Where the wild things are…

, 3:52 PM

Today I received my package from Amazon with four books, 3 design books and a story one: Where the wild things are (wiki).

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I wasn’t very sure about it when I ordered, but after reading it I must say that I’m glad I did. It’s wonderfuly illustrated, it’s a great story and it manages to make you feel “the magic” of a child’s world. It’s actually a classic, and it seems Hollywood are making a movie inspired by it. Hope it turns out allright (Burton’s Big Fish is a great movie that has a similar feel to “Where the wild..”)

I also posted some weeks ago this Hulk comic cover, which as you can see is a tribute to “Where the wild things are”:
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Makoto Shinkai

August 19, 2007, 2:43 AM

I remember being in my second year of art university. I was browsing through some now-long-dead forum and saw a trailer that enchanted me. I simply could not believe how beautiful the images could be, I craved for more, watched it over and over again, not wanting to return to the dull colors and light of the real world.
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It was a trailer for “Beyond the clouds“. I had to wait 2 years for it to be released. But they were worth it. Meanwhile, I found out that the man behind it, Makoto Shinkai, was a new rising anime director (even nicknamed “the new Miyazaki” by some) whose previous work was done all by himself, from start to end. I watched “Hoshi no Koe (Voices Of A Distant Star)”, “Other Worlds” (the music, Satie’s Gymnopedie, has the same effect on me as Ave Maria from “Comedy” – you can watch it on youtube) and “She And Her Cat”. They were all beautiful, and it wasn’t just about the artwork (which has a trademark-style you’ll easily recognise after seeing Makoto’s Shinkai work). The light in these animations is fascinating, you feel it as it engulfs you, making you feel like you are part of the beautifully detailed sceneries. You feel as if you could just lay down and watch the sky forever, listening to the wind blowing softly through the grass.

This year Makoto Shinkai released Byousoku (5 Centimeter – a chain of short stories about their distance). I can’t wait to be left speechless again. I have no doubt about it. Hope Amazon UK will sell the DVD soon.

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First image from here, in wallpaper size, along with other beautiful ones. Second one from here, a review. Another detailed review as well as many shots here.

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Comedy – by Studio 4°C

August 18, 2007, 5:15 PM

One of my all-time-favourite shorts, gives me goosebumps every time. Guess it’s because of the angelic “Ave Maria“. Can’t find which version is in this short, Bach/Gounod’s, Beethoven’s, Mozart’s and Schubert’s got me confused, guess I’ll have to ask mum :P — she’s a music teacher :).

later edit:
ANN says it’s Schubert’s…
I’ve also listened to Gounod’s and it’s quite different.

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