Thursday, 22 March 2012

those magnificent men in their flying machines

Using videogame controllers, an Android phone and custom-built wings, a Dutch engineer named Jarno Smeets has achieved birdlike flight. Smeets flew like an albatross, the bird that inspired his winged-man invention, on March 18 at a park in The Hague.
Smeets got the idea from sketches of a futuristic flying bicycle drawn by his grandfather, who spent much of his life designing the contraption but never actually built it.
When Smeets began studying engineering at Coventry University in England, he realized the physics of a flying bicycle just didn’t pan out. Instead, he drew inspiration from Leonardo da Vinci’s wing drawings to build his flying machine. Along with neuromechanics expert Bert Otten, Smeets brought his design into reality
The design is based on mechanics used in robotic prosthetics. The idea is to give his muscles extra strength so they can carry his body weight during the flight.

Monday, 19 March 2012

London wanderer

I accompanied my friend Chantal to visit all the Olympic sites in North London. Whilst she took some magnificent shots using a Maya Camera, I snapped the surrounding areas with my digital. It was a bitterly cold but beautiful day.

Westfields at Shepard's Bush

Hackney Wick

The Saatchi Gallery-Gesamtkunstwerk

I went to the Saatchi Gallery's latest exhibition the other day of artwork from New Germany. I always enjoy the Saatchi Gallery because although the art can be very ambiguous and strange, I find it very relatable in some way, whether it is in the way the artist intended I don't know but all the same, I come away feeling fulfilled. Here are two works that I enjoyed the most.

Jeppe Hein made a mirror that shakes when the viewer approaches it, prompting us to re-access our relationship to it. It shows you the world you are experiencing but not what you are actually doing, you aren't wobbling and shaking. All sense of reality is obscured. 

Brothers Gert and Uwe Tobias have created these woodcuts on paper based on many elements from their Transylvanian national costume. This I only found read after I had been totally captured by the beautiful balance of weight and construction of these figures. They were mechanical yet full of character, mischief and charm.


I took a trip back to my childhood for a personal project and this was one of my more successful experiments-rephotographing as accurately as I could photographs from when I was five years old.  I think the comparisons are especially spooky because not much in my home has changed.