Articles by Mariza Monta

Art

Japanese illustrator Maori Sakai perfectly captures happiness in her artwork

Born and raised in Japan, Maori Sakai has never seen herself doing anything other than creating interestingly cute, whimsical art. After attending Kuwasawa Design School in Tokyo for three years, she went on to work for a production company for another three years and is currently producing charming illustrations and lively GIFs for magazines and art websites as a freelance. Thoka Maer, Olivia Hynh, and Jen Mann are just a few of her favorite artists. She also mentions Studio Ghibli and Walt Disney, two of the greatest animation companies of all time, as her childhood heroes. When asked where she gets her inspiration, she tells Giphy she’s inspired by life. And it’s pretty evident in her work which, according to her, in essence, is capturing “my feelings and all the daydreaming.” With her unbelievable attention to detail and adorable portrayal of stories evolving coffee, people, and cats, her stories perfectly tell the subtle innocence in genuine happiness....
Architecture

The greatest architectural project in London that was never built

Mies van der Rohe, one of the influential architects behind the rise of modernist architecture, was very specific with the projects he wanted to design. As opposed to fellow modernists Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright, he insisted on “making the existing city beautiful” rather than creating utopian visions that can also be concluded as fantasies. True to his beliefs, the Mansion House Square was conceived. But it was only after his death that inquiries were made and the design was consequently denied. It was Mies’ classic “skin and bones” architecture with all the meticulously detailed planning and industrial steel. In one smart move, it would have been able to address the complicated traffic grid surrounding the Bank of England. And, adjacent to the City Mayor’s residence, a public square would have been created for the people – an ingenious yet controversial scheme. The discussion about Mies’ unbuilt Mansion House Square still continues on...
Design

Two teenagers just solved your ice cream cone problems and it is delicious!

Fact: Ice cream can melt. And unless you’re a serious napkin hoarder or savage enough to lick those trickling lines of gooey sweetness, you’re at risk of getting yourself spoiled. Luckily for you ice cream lovers, 14-year-olds Oliver Greenwald and Sam Nassif from Colorado have provided an effective, yummy solution to your ice cream problems. The Drip Drop, an edible ring made out of waffle ingredients, is an ingenious idea conceived by the youngsters at an amazing age of 10. It’s basically a ring that catches any ice cream drips which you can easily slide onto the cone – and it comes in two flavors: Original and Chocolate. The two teenage designers already won 2nd place at the Gates Invention competition for the design and have scored a U.S. Design Patent just last 2015. Oliver and Sam believe that with the use of the delectable Drip Drops, people can forego using napkins and in turn save “approximately one million trees” every year. ...
Architecture

Urban farming prototype Growroom appeared in Copenhagen’s 2016 Chart Art Fair

Growroom, an artistic project made to answer the demands of urban farming, was seen in Copenhagen’s 5th CHART ART FAIR held at the heart of the city. The art event, staged in central Charlottenborg, was established in 2013 with the concept of challenging “the boundaries and experience of a traditional art fair.” Designed by the collaborative community of Space10, Growroom is the first pocket farm of its kind to provide urban solutions for the growing problems of sustainability and demand for fresh produce. With “food producing architecture” in mind, lead architects Sine Lindholm and Mads-Ulrik Husum designed the spherical greenhouse to enable users to plant and harvest greens and herbs using the built-in plant boxes. It is transportable and compact in size that can transform it into both an artistic display and a food haven in one. Similar to all their other innovative projects, the “future-living lab and exhibition space” Space10’s main purpose...
Animation

Realistic 3D models of office TV show fan favorites Mad Men, Suits, Parks and Rec, and more

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be walking inside Mad Men’s mid-century modernist-inspired interiors? Or slacking around and playing technological geek inside the messy nest of the genius bunch in The It Crowd? We all have, at one point in our lives, wanted to replace our normal, mediocre corporate life with one of our favorite TV show cast’s complicated yet much more interesting life of cocktails and lawsuits. And this cool new 3D project might just fulfill those sitcom dreams. The team of real estate professionals at Drawbotics made exquisitely detailed 3D models of top rating office TV shows from scratch, relying only on research and meticulousness. These models are made to take the audience into a realistic, one-of-a-kind walkthrough of the offices from fan favorites Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Parks and Recreation, Silicon Valley, and even Suits – just to name a few. These workplaces were perfectly recreated from the floor plans down to the smallest...
Photography

Retro-modern hybrid camera made entirely out of recyclable cardboard

When people hear the word “vintage,” they automatically think it’s a collectible item coming from a previous outdated era. Not this analog camera, though. Jollylook is the first camera of its kind that is able to merge both the vintage look of a 19th-century fold-out camera and the benefits of modern instant film. What is more interesting about it is the fact that it’s made completely from eco-friendly, 100% recyclable cardboard and is, according to the startup’s website, “as dangerous to the environment as a banana peel.” This hybrid project was originally conceived while Ukrainian co-founder Oleg Khalip was introducing his son to the interior workings of a basic analog camera. The style and look of the camera are undeniably retro, but can instantly develop a photo within seconds with the use of the Instax mini film. Its 100mm lens enables users to shoot photos that range from landscape to portrait with the help of a Fresnel lens as a viewfinder. You can...
Creativity

Photographer takes on experiment with a $1 camera in Japan and the results are dreamy

In this modern day and age, it would be weird for someone to replace a good digital camera (or a mobile phone) with a $1 point-and-shoot 35mm camera. For photographer Skyler Adams who has self-diagnosed himself with GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome), this was a challenge he would never have expected himself to be “pleasantly surprised” with. During a trip to Japan, he decided to take it upon himself to know if the camera really doesn’t make the picture, like what photographers would often say. Writing in PetaPixel, he said he, “…found a Canon Sure Shot camera in a thrift store, and bought it along with an expired roll of Fujifilm Superia 400 film for $2.” He took pictures of landscapes and people, and the pictures all turned out to be quite dreamy and nostalgic. Talking about the experience, he said that, “most of the battle is finding good light” and that “the cost of each photo has helped me compose photos better.” He spent a total of $10 for this whole experiment....
Art

Digital artist reenacts her own dreams using conceptual photography

To digital artist Paxton Maroney, dreams hold a deeper meaning than what they seem. Art has always been in the fabric of her being since she was young. It wasn’t until photography became accessible to her that she was able to really express her art and creativity. For years, she had experienced surreal dreams that rival even the crispness of reality. This has often caused her to wake up in the middle of the night, disrupted with the images that she has taken with her in the waking world. Today, with her work as Conceptual Fine Art Photographer, she is able to tell the story of her dreams while letting her audience form their own representation of her art. She even lets herself go on lucid dreaming in the day to create new and captivating material. We have collected below a few of her works. But if you’re in Dallas, you can catch a glimpse of Paxton Maroney's solo exhibition centering on her extraordinary, magical art from February 4-27, 2017 at the Jen Mauldin Gallery. ...
Architecture

Industrial shipping container shelter that serves as an all-inclusive modern escape

In a busy generation that synonymizes traveling with the most sought-after luxury retreats, people often forget that nature is in itself an escape. With the use of steel and nature as the frame, Danish bathroom and kitchen company VIPP created a capsule-like shelter that packs all the essentials for a modern retreat. The 55 square meter pre-fabricated shelter is structurally supported with steel and is composed of two levels. The ground floor, which is covered with glass windows on two sides, boasts the bedroom, the kitchen, family room and the bathroom. The upper level has a small storage unit with a loft-type sleeping space for another guest. Nature plays a major role in the shelter’s sustainability. The operable windows are designed to allow natural circulation of air and the black-colored exterior absorbs heat and sunlight when it is hot. A built-in fireplace is also strategically positioned at the center of the shelter to equally distribute heat. The 25-ton...
Culture

Los Angeles-based photographer merges 19th century with modern technology

Back in the 19th century, circuses and theater halls were filled with top hat-wearing, corset-fitted ladies and gentlemen looking to see exhibitionists, and hear romantic poetry and music. Nowadays, this form of entertainment can easily be fulfilled at literally a touch of a fingertip. From tablets to Bluetooth headsets, modern technology has evidently made everything accessible for the modern Joe and Jane. But can you imagine if the extravagance of the 19th century converged with the minimalistic advancements of the 21st century? Qiangjian Meng, a photographer residing in Los Angeles, had this in mind when he created Gold Rush – a photo series depicting a “dialogue between generations.” The collection shows men and women dressed in classic 19th-century fashion interacting with the modern technologies of today such as an Apple watch, a Playstation controller, and even a drone. Meng started his career working with photographers in the fashion scene and...
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