By definition, monsoon refers to a seasonal wind in South and Southeast Asia that brings ample rain, but those of us native to Arizona call our summer rains monsoons too. Last week I was lucky enough to head home to Tucson during spring break, and although it didn’t rain, returning to the desert made me realize just how much I’ve been missing monsoon season. I write about Tucson quite often, but growing up in the Sonoran Desert is a gift that I’ll never take for granted, and I’ll use every opportunity I have to share its character and beauty. I recently came across Monsoon II by Mike Olbinski and couldn’t help but post it. Enjoy, and be sure to check out more of Olbinski’s work on his blog and Vimeo.
After graduating from The University of Arizona, I landed a dead-end job that I held onto until I found the courage (and opportunity) to move to Los Angeles. One day at work I was feeling especially apathetic, and a charming older man came in to the office and completely brightened my day. His name was Ed Keeylocko, and he had the type of joyful energy that could not be ignored. For business reasons I needed his address, and he told me he lived in Cowtown Keeylocko, AZ. I had never heard of such a place before, so I asked him about it. He said it was his town, and as ridiculous as that may sound coming from someone, I knew he was telling the truth. This guy was special enough to have his own town. After he left the office I decided to do a little research. Where is this Cowtown Keeylocko, and what’s this guys story? I typed his name into Google and found article after article, recounting the story of the man, the myth, the …
Though I’ve only lived in Los Angeles for a little less than a year, I feel as though I have discovered so much. Living in LA and learning more about the city each and every day has fueled my desire to explore and make new things; there’s a creative energy here that’s electric. For those who have never been to Los Angeles, you may envision the Kardashians driving through Beverly Hills, trendy tech guys sipping on lattes, and fashion bloggers doing photo shoots in front of some cool building – or maybe you imagine traffic, smog, and an income disparity that is excruciatingly palpable. But beyond the glitz, glam, and grit, there’s so much more to Los Angeles. So much, in fact, that I’ve just barely begun to peel back the layers. There’s something for nearly everyone in LA: culture, music, food, art, movies, academia, activism, ocean, mountains, architecture…the list goes on and on. And of course, there’s the spectacular weather! But despite everything I love about Los Angeles, I know that this city has a rich, complicated, and sometimes troubling history, and I’m eager to learn more. There is no …
I really have Vimeo to thank for discovering so many stunning, imaginative, and inspiring short films! Checking out Vimeo’s “Staff Picks” is a simple way to catch high quality work, and what I love about a great short film is that it’s so creatively reinvigorating to watch something that’s short and sweet. Walls of Change, by The Cinemart, chronicles the six-year transformation of Wynwood, Miami, as it developed from an industrial area that had seen better days, to one of the world’s most expansive displays of street art. The result is an area of abundant beauty, diversity, eccentricity, and political charge. After watching Walls of Change, be sure to check out Here Comes the Neighborhood, a ten episode series about the Wynwood transformation and the artists and individuals who made it happen.
In this short video produced by TIFF, Ava DuVernay discusses the importance of featuring diverse voices in front of and behind the camera. Not only is film forever, but film also informs so much of what we understand about the world. By restricting who gets to make movies, and who and what those films are about, we drastically limit the possibilities of the medium. When we see films about women, people of color, young people, old people, gay people, transgender people, disabled people, Muslims, Jews, indigenous people, immigrants – it’s essentially a reminder that those stories matter. You matter. Demand that Hollywood represent our richly diverse nation. Watch movies made by women and people of color. Seek out films from other countries. Share your love of these films. Do your part.
I discovered Lilfuchs’ work when I first came across his music video for Flying Lotus’ Zodiac Shift (now one of my favorite music videos, evah). Here is Lilfuchs’ just as cool music video for ‘New Topia’ by the band This Will Destroy You. Enjoy!
From Refinery29: Skater Girls Talk About Why They Love Boarding
Balamir Nazlica short film Unconcealment II, inspired by German philosopher Martin Heidegger’s concept of unconcealment, invites spectators to explore nature and the cosmos through a visceral journey in light and darkness. Heidegger described unconcealment as “what appears from out of itself, in appearing shows itself, and in this self-showing manifests” (1). Unconcealment II is not only visually striking, but Nazlica’s use of sound works to create a viewing experience that is both haunting and electrifying. Through the examination of changing landscapes, Nazlica’s short film also illuminates questions about time and space. In order to capture the changing of the seasons, the film was shot over six months in both Vermont and Maine. To learn more about Unconcealment II and Balamir Nazlica’s other work, please check out his website. “Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.” Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Oct. 2015. Martin Heidegger
We all seem to be constantly striving for success, but what does it truly look like? This charming short film animated by Lara Lee and narrated by Alain de Botton provides an enlightening way to look at success and what that may mean for you. Success was featured on The School of Life, one of my favorite educational YouTube channels. Be sure to check out their channel when you have the chance!
This may be the fourth or fifth time I’ve shared a similar video – one that features swooping images of Los Angeles’ beautiful skyline and an impressive array of street art – but I must share this one, because it’s just that good. Simply titled Los Angeles, Ian Wood’s newest video comes as a city-wide follow-up to his previous downtown exploration. As someone who fell in love with Los Angeles and decided to make the move here recently, I’m struck by how much of this city I have left to explore. As evidenced by the range of stunning shots that are stitched together perfectly, this sprawling metropolis is wildly diverse in so many ways. From culture, to architecture and nature, Los Angeles seems to have something for everyone. The experience of watching Los Angeles is so much fun that I find myself enthusiastically bouncing around to the music with every new viewing. Each shot is a sight to behold, and the soundtrack exquisitely compliments the varied imagery. So watch the video and let me know what you think! And if you’re interested, check out this map that highlights all of the shooting locations.