Sunday, 28 February 2010

Mark Langan- Cardboard Art

Mark Langan is an artist who uses corrugated cardboard for his pieces of art, and only corrugated cardboard. Using the textures of the sides, front and back, he created some phenomenal pieces that are extremely detailed, and really crisply done to.

The range of textures he has managed to procure from corrugated card is commendable, and each piece is dynamic and interesting. Due to the way the cardboard acts almost as a relief, there is great depth in the work and the added shadows also make the images much more interesting!

Saturday, 27 February 2010

Singstar Hottest Hits Game Review

Singstar is a competitive karaoke game for the Playstation 2, which has now released more than twenty games, spanning a range of music genres and time periods, from pop to the 80s. More recently, they have also released compilation discs for ABBA, Queen and Take That.

Singstar Hottest Hits is released only in Australia, although it is PAL region coded, which means it is playable on European PAL PS2 systems!

The box art for this game is really attractive and has an orange overall colour to it which is bright and appealing, although perhaps slightly intense? The art is very consistent with previous games, and keeps to the series very well. However, it is NOT the cover or the game art that you should be looking at! Just look at the track list~ it's HOT.

The game play is immensely straightforward. It is basically karaoke but the game makes it competitive by scoring you on a number of criteria, such as pitch and rhythm. Whilst singing, coloured bars on screen guide you as to how high and how long to sing a note to, so even beginners can have great fun trying to sing along to the hits!

In addition to single player mode, there is battle mode (for two players), pass the mic (for up to 8 players), duet (where two people sing together not against each other) and free play (just karaoke and no scoring!). I personally love Battle Mode the most as it gives the game an edge and induces competition and laughter.

Whilst you sing, the official music video for the song is played in the background, but if you have an Eye-Toy, you can plug it in and watch yourself sing (and dance?) to the song!

This is the track list to the Hottest Hits Singstar game which contains 30 tracks:

1. Annie - I Know You're Girlsfriend Hates Me
2. Avril Lavigne - When You're Gone
3. Calvin Harris - Acceptable in the 80s
4. Colbie Caillat - Bubbly
5. Delta Goodrem - You Will Only Break My Heart
6. Fall Out Boy - Thnks Fr Th Mmrs
7. Fergie - Clumsy
8. Finger Eleven - Paralyzer
9. Gabriella Cilmi - Sweet About Me
10. Lily Allen- Ldn
11. Maroon 5 - Makes Me Wonder
12. Mika - Grace Kelly
13. Mika - Love Today
14. My Chemical Romance - Teenagers
15. Nelly Furtado - All Good Things
16. One Night Only - Just for Tonight
17. Onerepublic - Stop and Stare
18. Operator Please - Just a Song About Ping pong
19. Powderfinger - Lost and Running
20. Ricki Lee - Can't Sing a Different Song
21. Sam Sparro - Black and Gold
22. Sean Kingston - Beautiful Girls
23. Sneaky Sound System - Pictures
24. Snow Patrol - Chasing Cars
25. Fray - How O Save a Life
26. Potbelleez - Don't Hold Back
27. Ting Tings - Great Dj
28. Ting Tings - That's Not My Name
29. Vanessa Amorosis - Perfect
30. Will.I.Am - I Got It from My Mama

I am simply STUNNED. The list has some REAL gems, and proper hits that are international such as Snow Patrol's Chasing Cars, Ting Tings's That's Not My Name, Mika's Grace Kelly, Avril Lavigne's When You're Gone, Sam Sparro's Black and Gold... The list goes ON.

I love pretty much all the songs on there, and even ones I had not heard of previously, I grew to like. There are less than 5 songs I don't really like on there, but they can easily be skipped and aren't immensely bad.

My favourites are Avril Lavigne'-When You're Gone, One Republic- Stop and Stare, Nelly Furtado- All Good Things, Sam Sparro- Black and Gold and Gabriella Cilmi- Sweet about Me.

I love Delta Goodrem but that song just isn't the best one to put on the disc, there are loads from her new album "Delta" that would fare better in my opinion, especially I can't Break it to my heart, In this life or believe again. Nonetheless, at least they have embraced their very own pop goddess!

The songs which create the most fun and embarrassment has to be Ting Tings's That's not my name which consists of mainly rap scoring, Mika's Grace Kelly which is just immensely difficult to sing correctly and Fergie's Clumsy; I was too distracted by the funny music video to pay attention to the lyrics! All in all, great fun!

With such an amazing track list, I only wonder why it wasn't released here in Europe!!!

I had to do some online searching, with ebay and amazon pushing the prices right up to £30, whilst I found this online retailer called Chaos, which sold it for around £17, including postage and packaging. Despite its website saying that it won't be dispatched until March 10 when I ordered about two weeks ago, it was dispatched the next working day, and took just one week to arrive, even though the site stated 2-4 weeks.

I am ultimately very pleased, it is the cheapest on the web right now and it is really worth the money to invest in this game, as it simply is AMAZING!

I didn't think anything could top Singstar Pop World Edition, but it looks like it has! Singstar Hottest Hits, only released in Australia, has a jaw droppingly good track list that leaves you loving the game and singing it over and over and over again! A majority of the songs I love on here with minimal ones I dislike or hate.

Not everyone will like these, as everyone has different music tastes, so make sure you Youtube the songs or something before purchasing to find the Singstar game that suits you!!!

However, I LOVE THIS GAME!!! And I can safely say this is the BEST Singstar disc to be released, so grab yourself a copy!

Unleash the Singstar in YOU!

Jen Stark 2

I had previously blogged about Jen Stark; click here to see my previous post showing her earlier works.

Since then, Jen has been hard at work creating more intricate paper sculptures and a range she calls "Waterfalls", as well as incorporating some metallic card. Everything she has done up till now has been so dynamic, colourful and original. No two pieces are the same.
I am also glad that she is experimenting with new media, along with creating some "sculptural" sculptures that come out even more but using the same media.

Read an interesting interview on
Artlurker visiting Jen at her studio.

I can't wait to see her future works and I anticipate an exhibition in London~ it would be awesome to be able to see this in real life!

Yong Ho Ji- Fierce Tyres

Yong Ho Ji is a Korean artist who creates wonderful sculptures using tyres. His focus is on animals, but not just any animal. He creates a range of small to life size sculptures of animals that are fierce and scary... The media gives the sculptures a sci-fi robotic feel, making them even more intimidating.

Yong Ho Ji captures the animals' anatomies very well, and using the media and creativity, plays with surface texture. My favourite piece is the lion, as it is just so dynamic and interesting.

Friday, 26 February 2010

Tim Noble and Sue Webster

Tim Noble and Sue Webster created these amazing pieces of art using junk and scrap. Why this is fantastic is that the sculpture is rather abstract and we cannot comprehend what it is really showing, but when light shines on it at the correct angle, the shadow of the sculpture creates an image that we can understand.

I think this subtle way of working is immensely successful and original, and must've required great thought and planning!

Check out the amazing work:

Tom Deininger- Junk Artist

Tom Deininger is a truly phemomenal artist and has a real eye for colour and shape, reusing all sorts of junk and rubbish to create realistic and attractive pieces. These range from portraits to sculptures to landscapes, and I really like the vibrancy found in his pieces. The work not only features an overall image, but within each piece, the individual objects themselves are items of interest and you can spend ages just staring at a piece and working out what was used and so on..

Check out the images below and for my favourite right at the bottom!

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Britney Spears as of 2010

What do you think of when you hear of the name Britney Spears? Ten Years ago, that name would only be associated with how great a singer she is, the talent she showed at such a young age and a list of No 1 hits. Today, people spew all sorts of junk about her- how she has mental problems, she needs help, she's fake, her music is crap and the like.

Who one person is, is not summed up by an action or a phase they go through, but their entirety. Britney Spears' career rocketed at a young age, with Baby One More Time reaching No 1 in 70 countries, and successively a long list of hits: Stronger, Oops I Did it Again, Everytime and Toxic. No one could fault her pop prowess at this time. She was one of the top selling pop female artists ON EARTH, so what happened?

After a string of break ups, marriages, custody battles and images of her all over the media, people started to question who this girl really is? What drove her to shave all her hair off? Why did she marry him and why did she go out with that person? She was no longer recognised for the music she was famous for, but instead turned into the everyday celebrity where people only took an interest in her personal life.

I personally think that this phase of her life is perhaps the most important for her. This phase changed her character, made her stronger, and opened her eyes to the world. She saw that she was controlled, and being pushed in so many directions, and in a sense manipulated for her musical talent. Her "breakdown" meant that she really knew who she was and what people around her wanted, and she no longer allowed people to take advantage of her, seeking help and comfort from those who mean the most to her.

Whilst I urge people not to judge her for her actions, I do believe what she did was in a way excessive, and unnecessary. I also blame the media and paparazzi not only for portraying her in a light THEY wanted in order to get more money, as well as causing her distress and fuelling her mental chaos.

In the midst of such ordeal, Britney was made to record and release and album called Blackout, featuring all electro pop tunes, and performing at the MTV awards. Whilst at the time I was extremely excited for her "supposed" come back, her music at this point was a flop. She wasn't ready, and she just didn't do it with her heart, and you could tell. Perhaps she too wanted to get away from her life and relaunch the career that she once had, but she wasn't prepared.

Near the time of her release of Circus, her sixth studio album, Britney filmed a documentary called Britney Spears: For the Record, which is a very personal and genuine documentary about what she wanted to say about herself. Despite all the media we saw, this documentary was her way of releasing what she wanted to say. I think she is extremely brave for doing it, and reveals her humanity. She too is human you know- she has feelings and emotions just as everyone of us do!

Circus was a hit. Many of the songs on there are upbeat pop tracks, and whilst many people will say they are written for her, and she's just singing them, she did have a lot of creative input. If you watch any of her behind the scenes footage for her videos, she does give her opinion and creative input on the choreography.

Whilst you would think all is restored to order, many now criticise her for her lip-synching on her Circus Tour. I personally think it would be better off for her NOT to lip synch, but it isn't right to push her if she isn't ready. You can't expect someone to go from learning to walk again to sprinting the 100m and winning a gold medal. She has to practise and train and slowly gain the confidence again. I also cannot stress how many people DO lip synch, and honestly, would you rather have a fantastic performance lip-synched, or an average performance, not very good singing? Because her circus tour is supposedly fantastic. She might not be singing, but she is dancing, and she is performing.

I don't believe she will be lip synching forever, but it will take time. For now, let's appreciate the stunning performer we have in front of us, and embrace her musical artistry, for no one can deny that she doesn't have talent. She might not be your cup of coffee, but that doesn't mean she isn't good! She has a long list of awards to prove it!

To sum up; Britney, despite her breakdown phase, has come through to produce yet another chart topping album, Circus. There will be many who continue to criticise her for whatever reason, but her musical CV is outstanding with many No 1 hits and singles. She is sure to WOW in the future I patiently wait to see what she brings, as there are rumours of a Lady Gaga and Britney collaboration, which sounds really exciting for both of them.

Monday, 22 February 2010

Keira Knightley fronts ELLE March 2010 Cover

Keira Knightley fronts the Elle March cover, looking great in a range of designer clothes, the best shot of which is her in a Vera Wang Tulle Dress and belt, the arm on the dress looks stunning... the others are so-so...

Keira answers some questions in an intereview for the magazine...
On her character in The Misanthrope: “Jennifer’s kind of a crazy mix of being a complete bitch—confident and terrifying—yet she’s incredibly young and is probably being exploited way more than she actually realizes.”
On criticism of her acting skills: “Oh, they still say that! Every time I do an interview with the English press, one of their questions is, ‘How do you feel knowing that everyone thinks you’re a shit actress?’ ”
On surrounding herself by people who tell her the unvarnished truth: “You have to be selective about the people whose advice and opinions you take. I know [my parents] would never tell me I was shit because they were trying to hurt me. It would always come from a very sincere place.”
On her upcoming film Last Night: “When we were making it, the arguments on set were just amazing about whether mental infidelity is better or worse than physical infidelity. There was a huge gender divide on the question. Every single woman said that mental infidelity is 10 times worse than [an emotionless assignation]. And most men I spoke with said that it’s the physical act that would be the ultimate betrayal.”


Audrey Tautou was recently spotted in Lanvin for the Baftas, and hence doing some research on the brand, found another brand with great colour and flow. The use of fabric and embracing its fluidity creates some very interesting shapes, but speaking of shapes, the gowns shown below really LACK shape. Some may say it is like a coloured tablecloth just thrown on the model! But then again, what gives it shape are the elements; wind, movement which is unpredictable.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

BAFTAS 2010 Red Carpet

It's the BAFTA Awards tonight, which means Red Carpet, which means glamour. Having seen some images of what people wore, the only one that struck out to me as really OUTSTANDING and unique is Audrey Tatou in a pink Lanvin gown. It is very eye catching, but the hemline seems really sharp cut compared to the rest of the gown, which makes it look really strange, and draws attention to it unecessarily. However, everything else looks great in my opinion!

Everyone else wore average things... Carey Mulligan's dress was overrated, I don't understand the front part, looks too choppy, although the train is good, and also not sure with the floral print...

We'll just see what they have in store for the Oscars!

Chanel No 5 Ad starring Audrey Tautou

I really like the Chanel No 5 Ad starring Audrey Tautou, as it is a really beautiful short film, much like the previous ad starring Nicole Kidman. This short film directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet, who worked with Tautou on Amelie, is about the brief encounter of a man and a woman on a night train, and their subsequent chance sightings of each other until they finally meet.

It is set in Nice and the location is absolutely captivating, with a real sepia/unsaturated colour giving it age and class.
Audrey Tautou also stars in Coco avant Chanel.

Sony Playstation 4 Speculations

The Playstation 4 has been what many people expected as the next step for Sony, and no doubt, it will be released SOME day, but not today. Due to a string of reasons which could be found here, including the recession, the Wii's success due to "pick up and play" and the price tag and unecessary graphics power of high end gaming systems.

Regardless, people are already speculating as to what the PS4 will entail, including 3D viewing capabilities.

I personally think that whatever they bring out needs to be a step up from the PS3 and that is totally dependent on the advance of technology, and with recent hype of 3D films, television and games, this could well be where Sony takes their next gen console.

Here is the best concept art for the PS4 I have found thus far, and I really like the transparency, although I am not sure what the circle thing is, how deep it is and what it does... and the white version looks ALOT better... but anyway... let's not get carried away.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

Nicole Fox by Alex Oryan

Nicole Fox, winner of America's Next Top Model Cycle 13 was spotted in some shots by Alex Oryan. These are mostly head shots but with elaborate headpieces and hair styling. The simplicity of the shot and the hint of some bright colour really makes the shoot interesting, with my favourite shot being the one below, as it is so simply done, and reminds me of the contortionist she is shown to be in America's Next Top Model, and that "gollum shoot"... Whilst some will criticise her for looking like an amputee, it looks stunning to me!


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