Friday, June 7, 2013

Writing Excerpt: The consequence of caring

From a letter to a friend:

I've always noticed your lack of attachment to things. It seemed, while you were younger, that you would bounce from identity to identity, skill set to skill set, person to person, place to place, exploring, and then moving on. It's a normal part of youth, but it worried me, somewhat. I don't know why. Maybe it was because I've always been too attached, to monogamous, too sensitive.

Anyway, I think part of the grief and terror that you were expressing this morning comes out of the change that happens as you get attached. Feeling something is an investment, and investments can mean a weight and an urgency and a shackle. But I contend that in order to truly feel, in order to truly love, in order for life to have meaning, you have to have that investment. It's a worthwhile trade, even if means that when things don't go according to plan, you hurt.

It makes me proud of you, even as getting older tries us both. Read More......

Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Square is funded! And campaign photochop recap

I spent most of the last month staring at TweetDeck. As part of the outreach campaign for The Square, I tried my best to stay abreast of news from Cairo and keep the cheerleading and pandering that is a necessary part of any Kickstarter campaign tempered with meaningful updates from the revolutionaries on the ground. I'm so happy this campaign has succeeded, and moving forward I'll continue in my goal to bridge promoting a story with the causes that it depicts. I particularly like this paragraph, from one of our outreach drafts:

"More than money, we feel we've been introduced or reconnected with a global community of people who want to fight for a better world. We're so grateful that you're with us. We want to use this time, while we're connected, to fill the air with inspiring stories, stories that push your movements forward, stories that bring our movements together."

Now I wanted to share with you some of the more fun images that I created in this digital blitzkrieg. I'm no designer, so these assignments were even more fun of a challenge as a result.
My favorite image has to be this Egyptian nationalist remix of Delacroix:

We busted this out really quick for the french Facebook page, it probably got the least exposure of any image, which is probably why I love it. It doesn't make any damn sense.

Khalid Abdalla's quoteplate was another favorite, filled with excerpts from his "Testimony," a long and wise letter about the revolution. You can read the full, passionate, brilliant text here.

There were whimsical images that underline the international and technological spirit of this project. Here Producer Avram Ludwig holds a computer Skyping in our Egyptian Director and Producer to a New York loft with a random Murikami painting in the background.

I used to hate facebook's cover photos option, but have embraced it as a interesting visual tool to change campaign headlines and keep things visually up to date.

Finally, the Stencil. Based on the street art of Keizer in Cairo, I mocked it up in 10 minutes before a flight, for better or for worse, and sent it to our printer. It's become the sticker, t-shirt logo, and viral stencil we circulated to spread solidarity for the egyptian revolution. Who knew!

Read More......

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Operation Anti Sexual Harassment/Assault and the murky way of the masses

This chilling video has been blowing up on youtube the last few days. If you don't speak Arabic, to experience it properly you'll need to turn on the English subtitles, and watch it in full quality.

A calm, aerial camera follows an atrocity in the midst of a chaotic crowd, a nighttime riot in Cairo. We are informed that one woman, in a knot of dozens of men, is being sexually assaulted. It is impossible to ascertain this from the video alone*, but the reactions of the men around her certainly support this conclusion. The chilling thing is that while the many of the dozens of men around her don't support this violence, the violence still takes place. In public. With thousands of people around. Gang-raping a woman has nothing to do with the goals of a people's struggle, yet it happened.

In times where rule of law breaks down, traditional power dynamics are scrapped. This moment has great revolutionary potential. The unfortunate reality is that other power inequalities emerge. If the people protesting, collectively, are not able to protect the people who are made vulnerable by those power inequalities, then they lose valuable support of those disenfranchised, and the atrocity itself stands to undermine their movement.

In Egypt, groups like OpAntiSH, and individuals like Aida El Kashef (featured in The Square!) are fighting against this violence, both because it is unacceptable and because it undermines the people's struggle. Support them, and if you're elsewhere, emulate them.

*It can be assumed that OpAntiSH did their homework and followed up with this woman and closer witnesses after the video was shot. If that is not the case, I apologize for misinformation. Read More......

Monday, February 4, 2013

Methods & Madness x Caroll Taveras from Dada Factory on Vimeo.

Before heading to Sundance last month I wrapped up a neat little video with Tessa Liebman and Caroll Taveras. Tessa's a versatile chef who collaborates with various artists to make events celebrating and expanding upon their work. Dark was the night, pretty were the guests, indulgent was the menu. Fun stuff! Read More......

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The Square (El Midan) Sundance 2013

The film I'm assisting at the Sundance Film Festival this year is Jehane Noujaim's The Square. I was in Palestine through the Egyptian Revolution, which distracted me enough that this film is a welcome education of what was happening on the ground in Tahrir. It looks incredible, and I'm grateful to work on the project. Catch the trailer here. Read More......

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Objective lines of color

These New York Times Interactive Census Maps are an excellent example of interactive visualization of data.

They show both the stark realities of segregation, and the interesting realtime progression of gentrification. Looking at this map superimposed with a property value map would be grimy instructive, as well.

Salt Lake City, where I'm from, is largely white, no surprises there, but interesting to see how the freeway I-15, which cuts through the city, demarcates the hispanic communities to the northwest of downtown. Otherwise it is fairly unsegregated, for its lack of diversity.
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Sunday, January 6, 2013

Moment of Zen: Pendulum Waves

Watch this. Apropos to nothing.

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