Ever listened to a radio drama and wondered where all the sound effects come from? Perhaps some one goes around with a recording device and captures them one by one. How ever they're gathered, it's now possible to browse 16,000 of them in one place. The BBC sound effects archive is a new website which allows visitors to download and listen to a huge library of recordings. They're all labelled and contain time information so those serious enough can find exactly what they need.
The archive is made available on the RemArc Licence which means its free to use for personal, educational, or research purposes. This basically means that they don't want them to be used commercially, so we can't sell them or use them to make other things to then sell.
RemArc licences are intended for people who find benefits from reminiscing. Reminiscing Archive rules allow people to freely explore recordings without payment. This has been shown particularly valuable for people with mental disorders such as dementia.
Find the BBC Sound Effects Archive here.
Suffering is a reality for us all, and yet for some it is overwhelmingly greater than the civilised norm. Often suffering occurs at the hands of others which in a way is the worst kind. The malicious or avoidable kind of suffering leaves individuals feeling helpless and diminished. Emotional pain can linger and manifest through our future behaviours which is why people choose to talk about their ordeals in therapy or with friends. Another way of communicating our suffering and emotional history is to make art.
This is where we meet Paul Junior Casimir. Accused of arson and jailed, as an ex-convict from Haiti, he has a big story to tell about the appalling conditions he and others were forced to endure. Casimir grew up around art, as his father was a painter, so it comes naturally to him to create art in a way to express his anguished tale. He had also held down a job at a puppet show, assisting artists and helping behind the scenes. This gave him the knowledge he needed to create a multidimensional expression of the suffering he has known.
Casimir knows that the Haitian justice system needs a lot of changes, and that because of its failings many people are going through misery. Many convicts die in jail or have records disappear so they never get released. The conditions are cramped and basic with people crammed into small spaces like battery animals. During this period behind bars, Casimir began to form catastrophic images in his mind about death and illness. He became plagued with images of horrific echoes of what he lived with every day. Unable to escape from the torments of the jail, only the letters received by a kind French pen pal kept him together.
The 35 year old has created an exhibition that communicates the emotions and feelings that he feels about his experience in the Haiti prison. It involves paper mache figures clinging on to iron bars, men cooped up in coffin sized cells with no room to move. There is a puppet show that re-enacts some of the scenes that has stuck in his mind. The show has already enjoyed a time at the French Institute and was given a glowing reception from the Haiti Bureau of Human Rights. After the massive 7.0 earthquake in the nation a few years ago, the main prison was never repaired and yet still holds thousands of inmates. This desperate plea for justice from one of the lucky ones who got out is now installed in Haiti's National Library.
Via City Lab.
Inspiration in antiquity is always a solid foundation. If something has stood the test that time presents then the wisdom it holds is good enough for other works. Many songs take notice of other famous works, the symmetry within media can be found in all of its walks. The important thing is to do something in a style unique to your project, and if its rooted in something much deeper and resounding with culture then it's no problem at all.
So to know that the Library of Congress in Washington has allowed their collection of British folk music and plays to be fully accessible online is a magnificent contribution to not only music but culture as a whole. The West coast sound that is famous all over the world has many roots in Irish music which is in turn intimately related to the British folk sound. Many other forms of music can show similar genealogies.
So how did this collection happen? Who collected it? It all began with a PhD student named James Madison Carpenter. After training at Harvard, he spent his entire working life from 1928 as a scholar of British folk. Travelling up and down the country, travelling thousands of miles in total, he collated over 3000 full musical works. Many of them were caught on wax recording devices. In 1972 Carpenter sold his entire collection including manuscripts, notes, and the all important recordings to the Library of Congress who digitised it.
It''s been on a long journey, and 90 years since the idea was put into action the whole world can benefit from this collection. Go ahead and explore the database.
Love Orgnanic, love wine? Look no further.
Ashley Howard is well known for his creative pottery and ceramics exhibitions. Since his studies in the 1980s, Howard has travelled and explored various techniques and methodologies which he establishes as inspired pieces. Also as a lecturer for the University of Creative Arts, based in Kent, England, Ashley Howard has helped to develop many more creative minds much to his credit.
The latest showing is called Meditations and reveals Shigaraki style pottery within the walls of Guildford Cathedral. The fragile yet exquisite quality ceramic work is painted in Howard's colourful style. In 2014, Professor Ashley discovered the illusive Shigaraki region and indulged in their timeless ceramic making techniques. Taking the wisdom home with him, Meditations unveils how pottery and spirituality can be intimately linked.
The fragility of the works which are placed on the ground in evenly spaced units of area, almost inspire a sense of fear for their safety. As people approach and walk up to view the works, extreme care must be taken not to damage them. Perhaps Howard feels this sensation when meditating on the spirit or the fragility of life itself.
The Meditations exhibit is available to all at Guildford Cathedral from April 5th to 18th May 2018.
Via University of Creative Arts Blog
Famous for the magnificent and mysterious Nasca lines, the ancient ground works of Peru dwarf many other similar phenomena around the world. The collection of hundreds of images which decorate the region of Nasca has been mapped and studied passionately by many inspired archaeologists. Their secrets remain ravelled in the blankets of time,with only theories in place as to what they could have been for.
For all this time, while scores of educated and well read folk flocked to the famous Nasca province, sitting next door in the Palpa region were another set of images laying completely undisturbed. Because of their ancient origins, the line art is so faded that the human eye simply cannot distinguish it properly without the aid of technology. Finding the works required the use of drones to get a bird's eye view of the mysterious desert.
It's believed that the images were created by not only the Nasca culture, which disappeared around 700 AD, but also by previous peoples such as the Paracas and Topara, These civilisations predate the Nasca to around 500BC to 200AD. Perhaps the forefathers of the geoglyph creating philosophy, the images do not always resemble the more recent Nasca lines.
Where as the Nasca lines studied polygons and straight lines, the earlier works depict figures. Most of the people illustrated were warriors, and unlike Nasca, the Paracas images were designed to be visible from the ground. Perhaps as a warning to wandering tribes, images of warriors on the hillside would demonstrate that the area was well guarded.
The images enrich the understanding of these early cultures and help to align events along the line of Peru's deep history. The evolution of the modern day Peru has taken many turns and by studying the unique and individual works of art from past epochs an even deeper understanding of the modern mindset can be compiled.
Attention was drawn to the area after Greenpeace staged a demonstration at the site of one of the Nasca artworks. The area was irreparably damaged by the careless protestors and it called for the whole area to be mapped and pictured immediately thus saving the vital information the rocks contain for ever.
“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication” Leonardo Da Vinci
The fifteenth century art master, Leonardo Da Vinci, is perhaps best known for his work, “The Last Supper”. It's a magnificent painting. Visitors to the masterpiece have to book viewings and only a handful of people can enter the room at one time. For those with the patience, it's considered a truly worthwhile experience.
Not only skilled in the painted arts, Da Vinci also had a talent for engineering, sculpture, and sketching. He was also a professional draughtsman meaning he had expertise in law. This truly multi-talented individual was a key figure in the Italian Renaissance and is often regarded at the archetype for the ethic of the time.
The famous drawing of Vitruvian Man, which shows a human figure in perfect proportion and with arms and legs in geometric positions, is the iconic image that we all remember. It's used in many things and speaks volumes in terms of aesthetic and dynamic. Leonardo is known to have drawn many others though, and they're all equally as good. His hand truly had a gift in the way it could capture the true likeness of what the eye could see.
It's been there for twenty years, according to the headline, but it's news to me and so probably for you too. The entire collection of Da Vinci's drawings and sketches are all online in one place. Take inspiration from the master himself, perhaps see if there's anything you can replicate, or mix up and play with. Take a look.
Thanks to the good people at Open Culture, who uploaded this article, I am happy to continue the paper trail and write about this fantastic collection of pulp fiction from the 20th century. Fiction magazines are still well-read to this day, and with clique audiences who know what they like and get it every month or so, finding traditions and style techniques within the works is fairly easy.
When doing creative writing courses, and I've done a few, the tutor always has a lot to say about reading other people's work. Knowing how to structure the story for the publication in mind is actually as important as the plot and the character selection. Readers have habits and they are used to a similar work to the previous ones so authors try to put their original ideas and creations within the context of ready made structures.
So when we're presented with over 11,000 pieces of published literature, in a series of issues spanning decades, finding the particular key points to think about for story writing are there to see. And, if we need it, there of course are several volumes of ingenious story devices and plots which can be taken inspiration from. Seeding the mind with some perhaps forgotten ways of telling a good tale are lurking in the pages.
It's a fantasy and adventure wonderland of quality writing, and I imagine to go through each work would take an avid reader at least a year or more. The hosting site, archive.org is an Alternative Fruit favourite, as they provide free access to millions of media items. Fancy a marathon? Here you go.
Nothing better than swords, witchcraft, and ancient traditions? Learn to write historical fiction.
Of course we all want to see the film everyone else is watching, so we can be in on the fuss. It's only natural that we want to know what everyone is going to see and why, taking part is all part of the enjoyment. But films are not only there to be smash hits and blockbuster number crunching landmarks. There are other reasons to make films, and perhaps much more valuable ones as well. Producing for a massive audience leaves the windows wide open, and as Kurt Vonnegut once penned, “If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia”.
So film-makers with credibility perhaps choose to make films that serve a purpose other than to entertain. A film is always designed to be watched and enjoyed yet there can be more cerebral reasons for why it is such a good piece of work. Psychology is something that we need to draw on when creating believable characters, and in this way various aspects of our understanding of this complex subject can be focussed on with film.
The University of Indiana has uploaded an incredibly detailed list of films which are written to compliment the cognitive sciences. You may be surprised by some familiar titles in there, however it extends way beyond the scope of the popular eye. This is a serious web project with an aim to weave the world of media and art into the world of cognitive sciences. Everything is fully searchable and each film is linked to pages with detailed information about who made it, when, and where. Of course it also details why the film is relevant to the field, helping researchers to find media that helps them think in the ways that are being taught.
Also, from a media consumer's perspective, passive education is extremely worthwhile. It's a mark of quality media that aims to improve the knowledge and wisdom of its consumers in return for their focus and attention. We don't all watch movies for the explosions, sometimes they explore things about ourselves and the lives we lead that cause us to look again at how we go about our own ways.
Check out the awesome list here. And if you find anything you love, I'd be grateful if you went via these support links to
Paris may be a world away from Palestine, however in L'Institut Du Monde Arabe there stands over one hundred artworks donated by European and Arabic artists. The art world clearly cares about a peaceful solution to the issues in this part of the world, and is prepared to invest culture in it.
Today, (10th March), the second unveiling of the sixty new items takes place in the IMA. The first showing took place last year and its main aim was to call for more donations. This year's event shows how quickly the cultural world can respond to a call to arms. Now with a wide ranging selection of pieces on display, the former French Culture Minister Elias Sanbar and the Institute's President, Jack Lang, can proudly stand by their efforts.
The pair jointly made plans for the museum in 2015 and work has been ongoing ever since. By establishing a museum of Palestine it is hoped that the nation will receive cultural recognition on an international scale. By investing in the people and their story, and giving them a voice that is separate and unique, the very notion of being Palestinian can be given more meaning.
The Institute have specifically said that items received from unknown names are just as welcome as those from famous artists. They hope to receive much more still, however their hoard already includes work by the late Egyptian painter Hamed Abdalla and Algerian polymath Rachid Koraichi. The art is not intended to illustrate a cause or push for emotional response in the immediate day, but to simply give the people a rich and diverse heritage which is inspired by their compelling story.
Regular readers may remember the beautiful clothing made from rays of light that Alternative Fruit reported a few days ago. The theme is catching, it seems, as another recent project from the Netherlands has shown us another way of using this ethereal and evanescent medium. Light as decoration has been used for a long time however using long exposure photography and moving lights is something artists of today are really beginning to experiment with.
The celebrated Mexican calligraphy and graffiti artist Said Dokins has teamed up with photography marvel Leonardo Luna to produce a stunning collection of images aptly named Heliographies of Memory. The phantasmagoric exposures depict lighting scripted into ornate passages and lines which float above attractive city architecture.
Each shot was taken during 2017 in various places of cultural interest and show an immortalisation of photons and flow within the momentary realm of a photograph. Have a look at a selection of their work.
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