Category: Nature

Inspiration

Rare disc of ice forms and spins in small river outside of Seattle

Naturally-occurring ice formations? 'Tis the season. Right outside of Seattle, word began to spread on Facebook about a massive circular sheet of ice in a small river. Photographer Kaylyn Messer was on scene to capture it. The disc of ice looks majestic spinning at the mercy of the current in the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River. Messer comments, "You can hear the sound of the river flowing continuously. Sounds from the ice periodically interjected with very small sharp cracks and groans. Overall, it was a quiet experience to stand along the river watching the ice circle rotate." Check it out below and find more photos and videos on her blog. ...
Art

Artist gives tutorial on how to make landscape paintings using watercolor

Jem Bowden teaches us how to create landscape watercolor paintings by showing one of her own pieces. We see the actual photo of the artist's subject. In this case, it's a scenic image of a beach shore with boats and other elements. If you look closely, the watercolor painting looks more artistic and creative than the reference photo. Bowden advises that even with reference photos, it's nice to get "creative" and feel free to paint with some freedom. Bowden also says that in impressionistic painting, detail is not as important as a good composition. A nice atmosphere with verve and directness will go a long way. The artist aims to captivate the entire sense of a specific setting or scene while allowing the chosen subject to stand out. In this particular project, the painting was done outdoors. They may be subtle, but working around the actual weather, smells, and sounds of nature can create important influences on the painting itself. ...
Creativity

Photographer captures various bird species around her Michigan home in stunning photos

Birds in Michigan are way different from Lisa M. Ca's homeland of Germany. This noticeable difference gave birth to an entire photography series. The amateur photographer began capturing the various species of birds with her DSLR. Soon after, she invested in a Bird Photo Booth 2.0, a device that uses motion detection technology and an attached camera to snap photos of birds at a rapid speed of 10 images per second. Lisa then touched up her favorite snaps in Photoshop before uploading them to her backyard photography series on Tumblr. Check it out! ...
Art

Ocean artist takes breathtaking photographs of waves that resemble towering mountains

Lloyd Meudell is an Australian photographer who is fascinated by nature. And it really shows, even through his works of art. He is able to immerse himself - literally and connotatively - into the oceans, allowing him to capture mesmerizing pictures of giants masses of water as they form into waves and seem to almost touch the sky. Meudell hails from NSW and is in love with the rawness of the ocean's beauty. Before becoming a professional photographer, he spent a lot of time surfing the seas. One day he realized this passion can be transformed into a different kind of art, and he decided to capture what he loved most about it. Now, his photos are available as prints on his website. If you simply want to be updated with his scenic photos on social media, you can also follow him on Instagram. ...
Furniture

Designer sculpts trees into chair-like objects without chopping them down

The fascinating thing about nature is that there's no stopping its growth. Gavin Munro is taking advantage of that with his unique furniture. The Derbyshire-based furniture designer fashions trees into chairs through some strategic sculpting. Yes, it's possible and Munro has years of testing in his mother's garden to prove it. Full Grown is the art of sculpting wood, as it grows, into furniture-like shapes without the need for chopping 'em down. The process can take anywhere between four to eight years as Munro describes, "In essence, it’s an incredibly simple art. You start by training and pruning young tree branches as they grow over specially made firmer. At certain points we then graft them together so that the object grows into one solid piece – I’m interested in the way that this is like an organic 3D printing that uses air, soil, and sunshine as its source materials." Check out some of the furniture below and learn more on their website. There's also...
Nature

Stunning photos show dinosaur tail preserved in apricot-sized piece of amber

Time for a DesignFaves Palaeontology lesson. Just recently, the first dinosaur tail was uncovered by paleontologist Lida Xing in Myanmar. Preserved perfectly in amber, the tail, which dates back to the mid-Cretaceous Period (approx. 99 million years ago), measures about 1.4-inch with an appendage of 8. It's also covered in what appear to be feathers and presumably comes from a juvenile coelurosaur. National Geographic says, "While individual dinosaur-era feathers have been found in amber, and evidence for feathered dinosaurs is captured in fossil impressions, this is the first time that scientists are able to clearly associate well-preserved feathers with a dinosaur, and in turn gain a better understanding of the evolution and structure of dinosaur feathers." Check out some images of the amber-infused tail below and read more on National Geographic. ...
Art

Conceptual artist turns pieces of trash into amazing still life art

Nik Mirus is a conceptual artist who has a knack for seeing beyond what the regular human eye can see. In fact, one of his latest pieces of work involves nothing fancier than railroad junk. He shines a light on random pieces of trash and turns them into well-photographed stills. He captures his pictures just before the sun is about to go down - he calls this the "golden hour". Mirus shows interest in how wind, water, light, and other natural elements are able to create amazing effects seen in the reflections, textures, and transparencies of other objects - even the most seemingly mundane ones. In his studio, he loves to get better "control" of this craft, exploring and photographing the correlation between the natural environment and such discarded objects. Mirus is based in Montreal and posts his work on his website. You can see his other work or check out the rest of the photographs from this 'detritus' series (although it is still officially untitled at the moment).  ...
Creativity

Startling underwater photos appears to show thousands of fish floating in air

This is one of those one-picture posts that yours truly loves oh so much. Mainly because this single picture seems to be worth a thousand. Photographers David Doubilet and Jennifer Hayes blow us away by this aquatic photo they captured as part of an assignment for National Geographic in Cuba. They were on task when they spotted this massive school of blue silversides. Thousands in number, the fish were speedily swimming through bunches of mangrove trees. Despite being an underwater photograph, the perspective used makes the fish startlingly appear to be floating in the air. The photo was praised so much that it made National Geographic’s Best Photos of 2016 list. Check it out! ...
Inspiration

Photographer brilliantly captures rolling fog over San Francisco

San Francisco is notorious for rolling, thick fog and Nick Steinberg has been capturing the phenomena in a wonderful fashion. The photographer produces all work in-camera without employing the use of Photoshop throughout his process. The contrasting blue, orange, and gray neon hues look fantastic rolling down hills and through dense woods. Steinberg conducts extensive research before heading out which involves checking cams, satellites, and forecasts. He describes his process, "This is what I call, ‘subtlety of movement’ where there are small windows of opportunity with fog as it evaporates, moves in and undulates. This requires decisive action, tests your photographic skills, and requires one to be ‘present’ in the moment, and ‘ride’ along with [the fog]." Check out some of his photographs below and find more on his Instagram and Facebook.                    ...
Art

Planetarium show becomes art exhibit as it shines light on ‘sun’light

In The Sun Placed in the Abyss, an art exhibit currently underway in the Columbus Museum of Art, the main star (pun intended) is the Sun. Through various films and photographs, the sun is depicted in both direct and indirect ways. But this is more than just an artsy move - the collection aims to go deeper into the social, historical, and even technological implications of the sun in terms of photography conditions and human interest. The museum also partnered with COSI to provide the programming of the exhibition. Over 50 artists participated in the project, all focusing on very powerful images of the sun. The collection explores the "science behind the sun" - how it influences all life on earth, as well as its influence in our art and culture. The exhibit is in the form of a planetarium show, now available to be seen at COSI. It will run until January 2, 2017. ...
Inspiration

These photos of 50ft waves show the beauty and danger of Mother Nature

Photographer Luke Shadbolt believes that the striking pictures he has taken are a solid showcase of the violence of Mother Nature. He stresses that the waves he photographed represent a beautiful duality of creation and destruction. The photos can be read on this philosophical level to easily bring the viewer to the question of how humans treat nature and wonder how long she will be silent about it. Shadbolt’s Maelstrom shows that she may not keep her peace for long. Take a look!   ...
Art

Artist creates Donald Trump installations using a very unflattering medium

A graphic designer and artist who goes by the name Allan Adler has various art installations in Miami Beach. The installations were created to demonstrate a very blunt form of symbolism. Each exhibit has a random sampling of dog poop with a photo of President-Elect Donald Trump stuck into it. In addition, there are also direct quotations said by Trump throughout his political career. Adler strolls around the area each day, choosing a random piece of dog excrement that fits his next art idea the best. Each installation is photographed and posted on his Facebook page, named "Pieces of Trump." Social media audiences are responding strongly to the posts, mostly from amused passers-by from Miami. The art is meant to be a critique of the on the correlation between irresponsible pet owners and the views that many hold in regards to Trump's leadership.  ...
Architecture

Architect designs the best treehouse we have ever seen

24-year-old architect and environmental advocate Aibek Almassov from Kazakhstan has been looking for the optimal solution to create homes without destroying trees and forests. After more than three years of hard work, the young founder of A. Masow Architects and Design Studio has finally come up with his version of saving the future generations: a unique "tree in a home" design. This is not your typical treehouse. The eco-home will involve modern and futuristic elements, but the biggest wow factor is, of course, the large tree found at its very center. The exterior walls are not just regular glass - they are coated with transparent solar cells which power the entire home and provide heat, using nothing less than a Tesla battery. Aside from solar energy, the home will also collect and purify natural rainwater for bathing and other needs. All drinking water will be recycled and purified, too. The roots will collect water naturally, which is made possible by the narrow...
Creativity

Smart garden lets you grow your own ecosystem at home

VERTICALGREEN is an international workshop based in México that has set for a very ambitious goal in fulfilling the World Health organization's recommendation of a minimum of 9m2 of green area per inhabitant for the year 2030. They've already been working on it for over 10 years now, covering cities in green, and they want to help you to do your part as well. With this new Plug&Plant, anyone without green thumbs can grow their very own vertical garden and enjoy all the benefits it entails. Perhaps best of all, these benefits come with a minimum effort. Plug&Plant is still in development, however, you can learn more about it by visiting VERTICALGREEN's website or following them on Facebook or YouTube.  ...
Creativity

Photographers blend nature and the human form through 19th century photo technique

Photographers Barbara Ciuer and Lindsay  Lochman created a project in which they used a special photo technique. The images were overlaid with the plants from their garden and exposed to sunlight. The artists were inspired by the cyanotype impressions which was used back in 1840's by pioneering photographer and botanist, Anna Atkins. "Experimentation with the cyanotype photographic process brought the portraits and flowers together and reveals rich alignments of nature with history", says authors. For more about "Nature Project" you will find here. ...
Creativity

Translucent, ocean-inspired ceramic sculptures by Jennifer McCurdy

Artist Jennifer McCurdy blends everyday objects with inspiration derived from the symmetry and asymmetry found in nature to create some amazing ceramic sculptures. The artist's one-tone ceramic sculptures feature intricate and partially-translucent bodies in forms reminiscent of conch shells and burst milkweed pods. McCurdy describes her process in her artist statement, "After throwing my vessel on the potter’s wheel, I alter the form to set up a movement of soft shadow. When the porcelain is leather hard, I carve patterns to add energy and counterpoint." Check out some out some of her sculptures below find more on her website. ...
Creativity

Elaborately-dressed bagworms dresses female consumer culture in Japan

Aki Inomata is tackling female consumer culture in Japan as part of her elaborate series in an odd and creative way! The artist dressed female bagworms with pieces of extravagant attire, designed to be protective cases of sorts. She purposely chose to use female bagworms because, unlike their masculine partners, they retain their protective cases for the entirety of their lives. The work was exhibited in Japan and serves as Inomata's commentary on what women go through to be accepted by society in terms of their looks. Check out some of her creative bagworm dresses below and find more on her website. ...
Creativity

Awesome aquarium designs from the 2016 International Aquatic Plants Layout Contest

Standby for an onslaught of amazing, eye-melting aquariums. Over 2,000 participants from 60+ countries took part in the annual International Aquatic Plants Layout Contest (IAPLC) and there were a number of them that stood out. The contest yielded fantastic submissions from aquascape artists tasked to explore what's possible in terms of the design of traditional aquariums. Each piece is a culmination of years of work and they were impressive! Takayuki Fukada retained his title and won this year's competition. Check out some of the aquariums below and find more on Facebook.  ...
Creativity

Breathtaking satellite images showcase ways humans have transformed Earth

People have transformed the face of Planet Earth in various ways. This has never been more evident than through an ambitious project on Instagram. Launched in December 2013, an Instagram account called Daily Overview began collecting aerial photographs showcasing ways in which people have shaped the Earth. Benjamin Grant is the mastermind behind the project and uses images taken from DigitalGlobe. Grant has amassed nearly half a million followers and has collated 288 of the best photographs into a hardcover book called Overview, available on Amazon now! Check out some of the images below and follow Grant on Instagram for more! ...
Funny

This Japanese museum is dedicated to funny rocks with human faces

Located two hours northwest of Tokyo is Chichibu, Japan is the only place in the world you'll find a museum dedicated to funny-looking rocks. Yeah, you read that correctly. It’s officially called the Chinsekikan, or "Hall of Curious Rocks," and contains a ton of "jinmenseki," rocks with human faces. It's run by Yoshiko Hayama, widow of the original owner who passed away in 2010.  The late Shozo Hayama was an avid collector of rocks and spent 50 years collecting ones that reminded him of faces. Hayama believed that nature was the best and only artist. Check out some of the freaky rocks below and if you're looking to visit the museum, make sure to plan ahead because it often closes unexpectedly for personal reasons. ...
Design

‘Forest’ wants you to focus on work and plant trees with gorgeous app

Forest is one of the most beautifully-designed apps of 2016. And above all, there's a noble goal at its core. Available on every major operating system, smartphone or desktop, Forest is not only gorgeous to look at but a joy to use. Fire up the app and you can immediately gauge the amount of attention that's been paid to its interaction and graphic design. Set a timer, sit back, and focus on the task at hand. The app will nudge you to get back to work if it finds you procrastinating. When you're done, Forest rewards you with in-app coins that you can donate to plant real trees! It also gives you a lush 3D view of the trees you've planted by focusing and keeps you coming back to the app to prevent your trees from dying. Forest is a really well-thought-out app and these guys deserve the DesignFaves round of applause. Get it here!    ...
Inspiration

Rare, stunning shot of a fiery-throated hummingbird in Costa Rica

Macro photography doesn't always have to involve insects and other tiny things. You can use it to see the tiniest details in bigger things like birds! Photographer Jess Findlay managed to capture a stunningly detailed photo of a fiery-throated hummingbird in the Talamanca Mountains in Costa Rica. The Vancouver native waited patiently for several hours for just the right angle. He says, "What made this a challenge was how fidgety these birds can be and the fact that the full spectrum of colour is only seen when they pause at a very specific angle." Check out the fantastic image below and find more of his work on Instagram. Jess Findlay...
Funny

PBS camera crews capture hummingbird with the face of an octopus

The internet audience lives for animals that look unexpectedly like other animals or do strange things. Camera crews caught one animal doing both. Hummingbirds are known for their erratic behavior, but this particular specimen most likely wins the award for being putting on one of the most bizarre shows in the animal kingdom. Documented as part of PBS Special's ’Super Hummingbirds,’ this hummingbird creates an iridescent pink facade that looks uncannily like a baby octopus. PBS cites, "He flexes the iridescent feathers of his mantle until they become a glowing mask of violet." Hilariously, the female bird being courted appears unimpressed and aloof. Check it out!    ...
Inspiration

Stunning photo simultaneously captures several natural phenomena

Volcanos are a destructive force of nature but they're beautiful to look at. And they've never been captured so well in a single photograph. Photographer Mike Mezeul was busy photographing the surface flow of a volcano in Hawaii when he was met by several natural phenomena happening at the same time. A meteor in a clear, star-filled sky with pinkish hues near the horizon, and then a hellish volcanic eruption right below it. Mezuel talks about this rare opportunity saying, "As twilight faded, I saw that the position of the moon—which was just a sliver—was to the right of the Milky Way so I figured what the heck, might as well try to get the Milky Way with the lava." Check out the stunning photograph below and follow Mezeul on Instagram for more. ...
Creativity

Stunning photo depicts cubic iceberg splitting the world into fourths

This post has only one photograph - and that's all it needs. It's truly incredible! Canadian photographer David Burdeny was sailing through the Weddel Sea in 2007 when he managed to capture this astonishing, fantastically-timed image of a perfectly cubic iceberg jutting out of the water. The composition, titled "Mercators Projection" and part of his series, "North/South," is a rare one in that it depicts the iceberg perfectly cutting the world into four, proportioned quadrants without digital aid. Check it out below and find more of Burdeny's work on Instagram. ...
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