Archive for the ‘Inspiration’ Category

The Coffee: QT Hazelnut with some sugar.

The Art:

Kristina Collantes :: Black Bottom Warbler :: water color and Photoshop


The tunes:

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Picture 13

So where does the image come from? Yooouuutuuube.com, a website that takes youtube videos and visualizes them in a cool way. The site really made its debut when a video of Disney’s Alice and Wonderland (one Alice’s songs played backwards) made the ranks of Digg.

I thought that a video could make for a good background. So I tried screenshots of different videos visualized on Yooouuutuuube, and I settled on concert footage of Daft Punk’s Alive tour.

Before visiting Yooouuutuuube, make sure you have the latest version of Flash and decent memory. That or get ready for LOTS of buffering.

I’m going to go back to watching the Alice video…

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Lovers, I found some videos for you as my valentine. Here are some great videos that use stop motion to tell stories of love!

Update: Sigh, WordPress won’t let me embed Vimeo vids. So until I figure that out, here are the links to my favorite vids from Vimeo:

GelGems: A Love Story from Dave Heinzel on Vimeo.

Sonata from Jan-Edward Vogels on Vimeo.

The Sweetest Little Song from Alexandra Fletcher on Vimeo.

True Love from THANK YOU on Vimeo.

There are tons more love videos than my choices! Go out there and make your own love story tonight ; D

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picture-52 How dare I ignore Barack Obama in my graffiti series???

This man has definitely inspired some interesting images and art, and that can be said about the street art around America. There are images of him and his symbol. As usual, I have found most of these images via Flickr users. Click on the images to be taken to the photographer’s photostream.

Of course these are just my favorites. Click here to see all the images, including some copyrighted ones that I couldn’t show.

//Obama Graffiti











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We all understand that today is quite a special Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Tomorrow, we will see America’s first Black president Barack Obama.

Have we fulfilled his dream? Well, we’ve come a long way. It’s hard to imagine that less than 50 years ago Black Americans were fighting for liberty and equality. It’s strange because racism isn’t archaic just yet. The wounds are still bleeding, but only because they were so deep.

If Obama represents anything in MLK’s speech, it’s that dreams are possible. We may have to drip blood and sweat to live those dreams, but dreams are possible. A Black man with a foreign name will be our president tomorrow. It’s no longer a dream, but a wonderful reality in which our country grows stronger.

I can’t even begin to express how amazing tomorrow will be for me. I can say that I will never forget this moment in time.

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I’ve been exercising during the last month, but today tested the mettle of my dedication. It was cold. It was very cold. I layered myself with a sweater and track jacket, and I drove to the local jogging trails at River Legacy.

There are two prominent trails alongside the Trinity River; one runs on the south side, and the other runs along the north bank. The north side is heavily wooded while the southern trail goes through stretches of open fields. I chose to jog on the north side. The wind was chilly, and I decided to use the trees to block the wind. The southern trail would provide no such coverage.


I chose the wrong path. Yeah, if it was summer and there was foliage my plan might’ve worked. But the trees didn’t block the wind at all. They did a good job of blocking the sun. Believe my goosebumps, the trees did a great job blocking the sun. I was so cold as I longed for those open fields of warm sun on my back.

The story makes me think of Robert Frost’s famous poem about this same conundrum, “The Road Not Taken.” The dude had a choice between two paths; both roughly the same. Yadda yadda, don’t over think your decisions.

But today’s experience taught me an extra lesson. In the poem, the speaker loses nothing from his decision. He may muse about the other path, but his decision wasn’t a failure. My decision was a supreme failure in logic, common sense, and just ugh! And the brutal lesson is that failure can bloom from our strongest logic – not just oversight.

We think we’ve designed the most user-friendly website, or that we’ve created the perfect strategy to grow a business. We feel our logic is sound. But great people are not necessarily great planners. Great leaders adapt to the inevitable flaws in their own logic.

We can plan and plan, but success is more organic.

So should we plan at all? Pfff. Here’s a plan: wear earmuffs to jog in cold weather. Your ears can get a little chilly on the northern path…

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Domino’s believes (hopes) it can hijack sub-lovers from Subway. The plan: run commercials that claim Domino’s new subs won a taste test over Subway’s menu. Burger King has a similar campaign with 1 commercial blatantly smack talking McDonald’s, and several other companies have ad feuds. It all doesn’t matter because a commercial, despite saying you’re #1, can make you appear like a bitter #2.

Here’s the problem, guys. You’re hurting your perceived value. Domino’s, you’re a pizza company. The fact that you make subs is shady enough. Secondly, no one trusts a taste test because the general public thinks the test is biased. The commercial sends a subtle signal: “The subs probably aren’t good because Domino’s had to make up a taste test.”

Subway makes pizza, but they don’t say the pizza is better tasting than yours. They say it’s healthier than yours, which brings up the second problem with the Domino’s sub campaign. Subway always advertises affordable, tasty, HEALTHY subs. When you omit health from your commercials, it sends a second signal: “If the sub tastes good, it’s probably loaded with calories.”

Ogilvy on Advertising has the best example of what to do in 2nd place: admit it. But it’s not an admission of defeat. It’s a promise that you’ll work harder to become a better company because it’s what you owe your customers.

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I was at Game Stop today.

A dude was at the Guitar Hero station, playing. He decided to hold and play the guitar from behind his head – you know, all rock star and such.

It made me think about who I am.

Am I judging him? Should I cheer him on? Or do I want to be him?

I decided that Guitar Hero can teach us about who we are. This guy risked looking like an idiot. After all, he’s playing a plastic guitar in the middle of a video game store. But he took a chance to do something that felt right.

If you were watching him, would you judge him, cheer him on, or want to take his place? The answer says a lot about your personality.

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I like that Vimeo always signs its messages “love, Vimeo.” It’s a very personal touch to a mass produced message.

It’s a small gesture that the company wants to make these messages as personal as possible. Unless I’m in direct contact with a team member, these messages will never be personal.

But that’s not what matters. It matters more that the company says, “We hate boring messages. So we’re going to try something different.”

Flickr greets me in a different language each day. Squidoo calls me Sugarpie. My wordpress page has snow on it. And I can’t help but appreciate these little hints of life.

If your company is about to mass message its clients or users, consider giving the message some personality. It may be overlooked, it may not matter to every single user, but it counts for something.

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A lot of good TV shows got canceled (Eli Stone, Pushing Daisies, Dirty Sexy Money.) Not just any good shows. Shows with a fan base.

Why? Because we’re the worst customers.

And I don’t mean we’re not faithful to our product. I mean, we’re the worst in the sense that we don’t fund the show. Doesn’t that suck? Our demand for a show isn’t directly related to the success of the product.

An advertiser’s demand, on the other hand, is the only demand that matters.

Nielson ratings crunch numbers and statistics that are supposed to represent the whole viewing population, and then the advert men decide whether they want to purchase the product.

And that to me is absolutely crazy.

Hollywood has started to give TV stations exclusivity to movies over iTunes and Netflix. You can’t download it, but you can catch it on NBC… and that again takes the purchasing power out of our hands. Instead of hoping for good sales from the fans, the purchasing power is given to advertisers. UGH! I want to spend my money, but I’m being told to save it for Viagra and Coca-Cola.

As a potential up-and-comer, my goal will be to sell shows to producers that will make exclusivity contracts with companies like Hulu. Sure, the advertisers are still in the equation. But they don’t have the damn power. We do. A viewer decides whether they’ll add the show to their queue or not. They fuel a production, not Pepsi.

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