Red Bull Flugtag Tampa

October 8, 2011 at 11:19 pm (Art, Branding, Design Events, Florida, free, marketing, News, performing arts, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

Timelapse photo of The Florida Aquarium's Flugtag in flight

Take a 100,000 of your closest friends and watch as 39 teams launch home-made flying machines off of a 30’ platform at the Tampa Bay Convention Center. Sounds like a fun day? You bet it was!

This afternoon Red Bull Energy Drink returned to Tampa Bay for the only US Flugtag event to be held in 2011. Teams came from around the globe to show off their machines made of wood, foam, pvc, fabric and other basic materials. They formed these into crafts of all different shapes and sizes. Some of my favorite included a giant fork, the A-Team van, the biggest bra you will ever see, and even life-size Back to the Future DeLorean! In the three Flugtags events, and 6 crafts, I’ve helped build I have never seen the hangars as packed as they were today. I’m not sure if this was due to the layout of the hangars or the amount of attendees, but there was barely enough room to move through the crowed before the launches started.

Throughout the day weather was a bit of concern. Wind was definitely a factor throughout the event, but the rain stayed away until this evening. Weather wasn’t the only good luck had during the day. A big scare came when Little Evil, Dade City Motocross Dare Devil, appeared to be knocked unconscious and had to be taken out of the water on a backboard. Luckily he was checked out and up walking around before the next team was out of the water. Other than it seemed to be a fairly safe day in the skies and water of the bay, which is always good to hear after an event such as this.

If you missed this event Red Bull is holding a Kart Fight in Orlando on December 1st and there are rumors of another Red Bull event in South Florida during 2012. If you have a chance to attend Flugtag I would definitely suggest it, if you have the cans to built one I would encourage it. I’ve actually built 6 of them helped launch two. This go around I designed and helped build two, one for Fox 13 and one for Jana Water, so you have some catching up to do …get on it!

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Facebook May Cost Man 10 Years in Prison

September 22, 2009 at 12:58 am (News, social media) (, , , , , , , , , , )

facebook

Back on August 31 I blogged about the Boca Police Department using the twitter handle @BocaPolice to dispense information to the general public in real time, and joked that social media could cost you your freedom. Well, kids guess what happened to one West Virginia fellow?

19-year-old Jonathan Parker likes burglarizing people, turns out he likes facebook, too. He enjoys these two activities so much that he decided to do them in tandem. In all his excitement he remembered to take the $3500 worth of diamonds, but forgot to log out of his facebook account from the victim’s computer – I wonder if his status was “excited about my new bling!”?

The burglary happened on August 28, and Jonathan is being held in the Eastern Regional Jail in lieu of $10,000 bond, if convicted he could get up to ten years in prison.

I guess the lesson here is: always steal the computer …or earn your money like the rest of us.

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Photo Walk’n – South Beach Winner

August 1, 2009 at 11:46 pm (Art, Art Event, Design, Design Events, Florida, free, Miami, networking, News, photo walk, photography, social event, Social Events & Networking, South Florida) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Sorry for the procrastination, but I am happy to announce the winner of the Scott Kelby Worldwide Photo Walk, South Beach edition. The winning photo was taken by Michelle Brecher:

Cameo

The competition was stiff! Other photographs of note are shown here:


All the entries can be viewed on the Photo Walk page, and all the photos from the walk are available for viewing on our Flickr page. Thanks to everyone who participated in the photo walk, it was a lot of fun!

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Blending Cameras – From Point & Shoot to DSLR

July 31, 2009 at 5:06 pm (Design, News, photography) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Like the compactness of a point-and-shoot camera, but want the visual punch of a DSLR? In the past we’ve seen point-and-shoots with various attachment options – for example the Sony Cyber-shot  series of point-and-shoot cameras has been offering attachments like a wide angle lens, telephoto lens, photo filter set, and underwater camera case for years – but none have offered the true versatility of a real DSLR.

The gap between these two realms is shrinking fast. Some define the new kid on the digital photo block as a “hybrid camera,” while others call it a “power point-and-shoot”. So what makes this new category of camera so special? Compared to traditional P&S cameras these new cameras allow for better ISO (light sensitivity), smaller lens aperture (the amount of light allowed into the lens), and some even boast compatibility with the Micro Four Thirds System (allowing for changeable lenses). Olympus recently released a statement about the E-P1 camera saying it is: “…The world’s smallest 12.3-megapixel interchangeable lens system camera that blends the high-quality still images of a DSLR with HD video, stereo Linear PCM audio recording and In-Camera Creativity within an ultra-portable body.”

These cameras are smaller and lighter than their DSLR counterparts, mainly due to the camera’s lack of a mirror box in favor of an ultra-precise electronic viewfinder. The cameras are expected to provide point-and-shoot enthusiasts with control over depth of field and other areas lacking from the P&S platform while maintaining the flexibility of a small camera. In fact the CEO of Samsung Digital Imaging Company, Sang-jin Park, said: “We estimate that the hybrid digital camera market will be over 20 percent of the global digital still-camera market by 2012.”

We’ll see some versions of the new high-end point-and-shoots on the market later this year and they are expected to be in the $600+ price range. Companies planning to be in the first wave of power point-and-shoot manufacturers include: Panasonic, Samsung, Olympus, Leica, and Sigma. It will be interesting to see where this new genre takes us.

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United Breaks Guitars – Dave Carroll Breaks United

July 23, 2009 at 10:35 pm (economy, News) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

I ended my last post regarding the United Breaks Guitars video with: “I guess an important lesson for companies to learn is that the consumer is no longer helpless to retaliate. It will be interesting to see if any of these videos affect United’s bottom line.”

Well, guess what? It has affected the company. This morning many news outlets across the globe are reporting on the financial fallout from Dave Carroll’s YouTube video, United Breaks Guitars. The Times reporter Mike Harvey from San Francisco noted, “Consumer revenge, it seems, is best served with a video camera and three-part harmonies.”

In the past disgruntled customers could only threaten physical harm on company representatives who they felt had wronged them (this usually did not end well), but could not threaten fiscal harm to an entire company. This video has caused a 10% drop in airline stock price resulting in a loss of $180 million dollars to shareholders. “Which, incidentally, would have bought Carroll more than 51,000 replacement guitars” as reported by Chris Ayres of The Times.

For updates on the Dave Carroll saga you can follow him on Twitter: @DaveCarroll or Curve Productions: @curveprod

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Photo Walk’n – End Game

July 19, 2009 at 11:36 pm (Art, Art Event, Design, Design Events, Environmental Graphic Design, Florida, free, Miami, networking, News, photo walk, photography, social event, Social Events & Networking, South Florida) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

End_Game

Scott Kelby’s Second-Annual Worldwide Photo Walk finally arrived. The South Beach, Miami Beach, Florida, walk was awesome! We had more than 35 photographers show up with all kinds of photo-taking apparatuses. I stayed with a small group for most of the walk. We covered Ocean Drive and Collins Avenue before meeting up with the rest of the group at Jerry’s Famous Deli.

While at Jerry’s we had the opportunity to get some lunch, re-energize in a little air conditioning, and show each other what photographic finds we acquired while we socialized. From what I saw both the talent base and humor of the group were very strong. Everyone I talked to had a good time.

After lunch a group of us continued our shooting excursion for a few more hours until we were all exhausted from the heat. My small group headed over to Washington Avenue and stopped in for a visit at the Wolfsonian Museum, their current exhibition, Sun Stroke Stimulus, seemed to be a fitting theme for the day – a future post will cover our findings there.

Having shot South Beach several times I shied away from shooting my normal architectural subjects and concentrated more ephemeral topics like graffiti, modes of transportation, etc. Viewing South Beach at a more intimate scale is quite different than shooting whole buildings and panoramas like what I’m used to. It was a fun challenge to broaden my horizons by narrowing my view.

Overall I think the day was a success. A few photo walkers continued on to more photo walks in other areas, or to explore on their own hitting areas like Wynwood, the Holocaust Memorial, and Lincoln Road. I look forward to the next one, whenever it may be.

(For all the information regarding this photo walk and it’s contests click here)

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Tweet, Tweet – The News is Calling

July 15, 2009 at 12:24 pm (Florida, Fort Lauderdale, free, marketing, networking, News, social event, Social Events & Networking, South Florida) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Social_media_header2

What happens when you stuff 100 people into a room to listen to 6 panelists discuss “How Traditional Media is being influenced by Social Media?”

A lot of tweeting!

Last night was the Social Media Club of South Florida (@SMCSF) Meetup held on the 12th floor of Broward College’s downtown building. The panel was moderated by former journalist Agustina Prigoshin (@AgustinaP) and included:

Niala Boodhoo (@nialaboodhoo), The Miami Herald
Chris Tiedje (@ctiedje), South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Mathilde Piard (@mathildepiard), The Palm Beach Post
Jessica Sick, NBCMiami.com
Trina Sargalski (@wlrnunderthesun), WLRN 91.3 FM
Adrienne Roark (@AdrienneRoark), News Director at CBS4

Back in the day we had town criers, then newspapers came about to deliver our daily dose of news. Now a new generation has ushered in a variable feast of town criers through Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and even Flickr. They hawk their own brand of news through every available outlet, from PDAs to computers screens and any other conduit that’s backlit in RGB. So, what does this panel of traditional newsies have to say about the brave new social media frontier?

They almost all agree on several points:

  • That they have gone through a trial and error phase of what works and what doesn’t, e.g. While Facebook fan pages are great, they may cause problems with RSS feeds.
  • Though their circulation is down for physical products, their media reach is actually growing. This is due to the fact that they are reaching audiences who would have otherwise been inaccessible through traditional media outlets.
  • There has been a shift in importance causing reporters to write for the web first, and print second. The reporting staff has adapted to use social media, web, photography, and other non-traditional avenues in their coverage.
  • Social media is a valuable tool in gaining real-time leads and also feedback to how the consumer feels about changes in interface, style, etc.

The panel discussion was very informative. There was a chance to meet with everyone in a face-to-face social atmosphere after the event at Off the Hookah. Due to time constraints I was not able to attend the post-event festivities, but hope to be able to next time.

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Chick-fil-A – Let Your Teats Hang Out

July 10, 2009 at 5:54 pm (advertising, Branding, economy, Florida, free, marketing, News, South Florida) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Pictures pulled from Facebook

Pictures pulled from Facebook

Today is the day of one of my favorite food-related festivities, Chick-fil-A’s Annual Dress Like a Cow Day. The promotion awards those who dress up like a cow with a free meal. For anyone lacking the proper regalia for such an event, Chick-fil-A has created a Costume Kit available through their website. To help promote this event the company set up a Facebook Group, which is nearing 1 million fans, and a micro-site.

Chick-fil-A got its start in 1946 as Dwarf Grill in Hapeville, Georgia. It’s creator Truett Cathy is credited with inventing the boneless chicken sandwich; the first Chick-fil-A was opened in Atlanta, Georgia in 1967. The still privately owned company has locations in 38 states and annual sales reach more than $2.9 billion; making it the second-largest quick-service chicken restaurant chain, and one of the largest privately-held restaurant chains, in the US.

If you’re hungry for some chicken, or want a free meal, don a cow costume and head to your local Chick-fil-A…and don’t forget the camera!

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Money gets Illustrated

July 3, 2009 at 11:03 am (Art, economy, Graphic Design, Illustration, News, print media) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Money MagazineDo the right thing in a recession
In a tough economy you may face some hard decisions when it comes to money and your relationships with family and friends. Our ethics experts weigh in on how to handle some particularly thorny dilemmas.”

This is not the title and intro of an article you would expect to have interesting, or even good, illustrations associated with it. Surprisingly enough the staff at Money Magazine have arranged for this and many other articles to have strong graphics and illustrations complementing their reports.

Toronto based illustrator Kagan McLeod created the illustrations for the “Do the right thing in a recession” article. I really enjoyed this set of graphics. Our protagonist remains the same identifiable character throughout the article. He is groomed and dressed in the same uniform – gray shirt and bluish-gray pants in various states of dress – throughout the article, while the antagonist(s) for each sub-article are displayed in monotone gradations.

The graphics are easy to digest as simple visuals, and they complement each storyline well. The content of the article is good, too. I look forward to the editors of Money Magazine continuing with the strong graphics, after all, illustrators need work, too.

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