Category Archives: Socially conscious

Luxury Design is now Organic.

The times have changed since gold foil was the ultimate in luxury.

$_1With the emergence of the organic movement, identity design has also evolved. Quirky graphics, humor, simple, non-elaborate designs, muted and textured finishing. This is the new luxury. (Source: David Rogers, We Are Pure Design Agency).

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The demise of Sparta. And the rebirth of Greece.

Ancient Greece is a complex topic but from what I can summarise about Sparta, it was a wealthy state with a strong education system called the Agoge where elite boys would take part in physical training to mould them into the strongest and most disciplined soldiers. Spartan girls were also brought up to be strong and supportive so they could provide strong babies to continue the Spartan lineage. But Sparta ruled over the Helots – peasants who farmed the land and provided food for their wealthy Spartan overlords. Over time, resentment between the Helots and the ruling Spartans led to a war. Even though the Spartans won the war, this class struggle plagued and weakened them for a long time until eventually they had a war with Athens over the city of Thebes which led to Sparta’s demise.

Similarly, fast forward a few thousand years to modern Greece with huge levels of inequality and impoverishment leading to the election of Syriza on an Economic platform. Greece is saying “we’re going to be playing by our rules now and we will no longer be subjected to EU humiliation and Economic imbalances”.

To me, there’s a few lessons in Authenticity and Equality that my University Professor Yanis Varoufakis – the newly appointed Greek Finance Minister demonstrates.

  1. We can’t solve problems using established systems and entrenched models of thinking. We must be trailblazers even though it might ruffle some feathers along the way.
  2. The solutions we design must be based on symbiosis and nurturing a win/win scenario. The current mess that the world is in can be attributed partly to the inequality that many feel at the hands of the few.

If we want to improve our situation – or that of a corporation or brand – we should add real value to society, we should be authentic and we need to be fearless. References: Inequality isn’t inevitable, it’s engineered. That’s how the 1% have taken over. By Suzanne Moore

Are we in for another Financial Crisis?

Are we in for another Financial Crisis?

Bootstrapping vs. Funding and the Great Entrepreneur / Tech Deception.

capitalism same as communism

I wonder when the Silicon Valley / Tech bubble is going to burst? It seems to me it is lacking integrity. Although it was touted as the Economic Saviour and Tech. Revolution that will propel humanity forward and create fairness, in reality it’s just hipster Entrepreneurs who claim to be different than the corporates they left but they end up emulating them.

It’s not really their fault though because they are part of an unsustainable global system that sucks them back into the same old paradigms – inequality, unnecessary growth for growth’s sake, unsustainable use of finite resources, imbalance of values.

In this video, Spotfront founder mentions the “Silicon Valley culture of Glorifying Success and ‘Big Exits’ – whilst not focussing on the fundamentals of building a business” – in other words, he’s describing the Silicon Valley PR machine.

And even he goes on an MBA instigated ramble discussing how his start-up is “Business Model Focussed” – what on earth does that mean? And what about “Cost Structures”? For a purportedly Agile Start-up this sounds too much like the overly complicated business language that many start-ups were trying to escape. Why not say “focus on doing things right and minimising your costs”?

bootstrap article

Technology has been touted as the force that will propel humankind forward. But in reality, if people don’t have access to the tools | networks | connections | education for Technology it will continue to divide the world into the Elites and the masses. When the system is so disoriented and imbalanced as it currently is, technology cannot save us until we change our values and move to a more equatable, fair, honest system.

Screen Shot 2014-03-24 at 10.03.12 PM

We’ve seen enough Venture Capital, Hipster Marketing/PR and Techies to realise that it’s mostly cool design used to coerce people into spending more on over priced designer toys and labels.

It’s time to GET REAL. GET HONEST. GET FAIR.

#zeitgeistmovement #occupywallst

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The basement of this vacant house is now an urban greenhouse

Productive and thoughtful use of space #begoodtotheplanet

Grist

Cleveland’s BioCellar, a new type of urban farming project, started as a vacant house. But Neighborhood Solutions, a local nonprofit, had a plan for that house, so when it was torn down, the basement was left intact. Now, there’s a greenhouse being built on top, and plans for crops to be grown in the basement. FastCoExist explains:

Why a cellar? At depths below four feet, the ground stays at a constant temperature, so even in the middle of a harsh Cleveland winter, the room won’t get colder than 50 degrees. With light flooding in from the glass roof above, food can grow year round.

Also, it’s run on solar.

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Food is a finite resource when we don’t manage it sustainably.

johnny... abegg

‘Spindrift’ is the short story of acclaimed Chef Ben Shewry, who during a transitional time in his life, had the fortune of meeting Victorian Mussel farmer, the Sea Bounty‘s Lance Wiffin, through Ben’s late friend Jason Jurie.

The encounter formed a unique bond between Chef and Fisherman, the tale emphasizing the importance of sustainable food practice, compassion and friendship.

‘Spindrift’ is the second food based film from Ben Shewry and Filmmaker Johnny Abegg, following on from the success of their first short film together called ‘Kobe and the Sea’, which won the Chef Directory‘s “Best Internet Food Film” for 2011 – https://vimeo.com/30412588

http://www.attica.com.au/
http://www.seabounty.com.au/

The video was shot on a Nikon D7000, with the 50mm 1.4 and 18-200mm lens. The underwater was shot on a GoPro. Photos by Colin Page.

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