Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Modern Adaptation { Columbus Iron Works }

It's always interesting when an historic building gets a modern renovation. I suppose I'm in the school of thought that finds it more intriguing when there is a clear distinction between old and new. The exterior and interior photographs are of the Columbus Iron Works turned into the Columbus Georgia Trade and Convention Center.

This was a beautiful facility for the wedding I attended a few weeks ago. I captured these shots during my hair and make-up break eager to explore the architecture.

Stay tuned for more photos of the wedding celebration.

Black and white film {Fuji Neopan} photos by Sophorn.

Monday, July 26, 2010

It's a Monday

Monday is usually never a calm day. The amazing photograph by De Vetpan Studios screams Monday to me. Somehow though, the photograph of splashing coffee and a messy table helps me release some stress because it visually releases so much energy. I came across his work through the photograph below that I wanted to suggest Habitat for Hope as a background image. Hope your Monday and week goes well.

See the steps to producing the "cookie splash" photo above here.

Friday, July 23, 2010

A Day at the Lake ~ Pickwick Lake

While I do look forward to an incredibly busy weekend in the wood shop, I would still like to reminisce about the calm day at Pickwick Lake recently. Thanks to the crew at archimania and especially their office manager Susan for hosting the outing. {Being enveloped by bubbles when arriving at Susan's lake house was a nice greeting.}

And finally, the best way to end the afternoon. { Have a good weekend everyone. }

Color film photos/graphics by Sophorn.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Habitat for Hope / Postcards / Test 1

Habitat for Hope, in addition to sending out brochures to introduce their mission to people, needed 4x6 postcards to be on hand for passing out at their upcoming events. The same text is carried from the brochure, therefore, the graphic language ties together. I did try a photo collage of HFH kids as side by side "blades," but in the end one great photo was much more powerful.

More than one photo can be printed as part of the series. HFH will confirm final photo choices and front of card subtext. Photo banner above keys each option or side shown below at actual size.


{1} Front Option A ~ Subtext is intended to be a personal story or real quote from an HFH parent of kid. Green label is lower than back of card and a "multiplied" transparency as compared to No. 3 Front Option B. HFH leaf is grounded on label of the same color and placed over the little boy's heart.


{2} Back ~ Green label grows in height from Front Option A and also acts as a mini business card emphasizing the contact information.


{3} Front Option B ~ Subtext can change with each photo chosen. Green label is the same height as the back to fill in more proportionately for this particular photo. A slight transparency is used instead because of the strong colors.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Q & A with Mat Klachefsky of Boats

Today, I'm excited to welcome singer/songwriter Mat Klachefsky of Boats for an interview about his music and his area of the world ~ Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. This is my first music interview with a non-Memphis band, but this will hopefully relate back to Memphis since I think I've convinced Mat to play in Memphis when the time comes. Thanks Mat for being so gracious! I'll post the Graphic Guide mentioned in the album review after this crazy week.

If I've learned anything about touring, it's that the best shows are often the ones you don't expect. There are little pockets of awesome everywhere in the world, so one needs to figure out some sort of mathematical equation to be a part of one of these pockets at the right time.
~Mat about selecting cities for the next U.S. Boats tour.

Is Boats your first endeavor into music?
Yes, but I've been doing it for a while now. I was writing songs and playing around town sporadically as "Boat" since 2001, and when we put out our first record in 2007 we kind of solidified the lineup and changed the name to Boats.

Your latest album Cannonballs, Cannonballs almost plays like a movie soundtrack especially with the music running seamlessly from one song to the next. Do these songs connect into one story or still meant to be separate stories?
The songs are pretty independent of each other. I'm not into concept albums, I feel like when an artist plots out from the beginning what is going to happen something that should occur naturally is lost. These are just a bunch of songs. If they feel like they link up, then rad for us! But it's a total accident.

Can you explain where these stories originated from? Were they inspired from your childhood experiences?
I'd like to say that the songs were inspired by childhood experiences, but actually looking at them individually I'm not so sure. Every job I've ever had has been working with kids, and I spent 8 years working and living at summer camps for up to 5 months out of the year. I'd like to think that this has severely skewed my maturity... in many ways my "childhood experiences" could be from last week and I'm 28.

“Chrome Eyelids” has to be my personal favorite from the new album. I’m intrigued with the title. Can you explain what “chrome eyelids” are?
They are new eyelids you can buy to make your dreams more awesome.

With so many reviews heralding your music as having the kind of fun and energy suitable for kids, have you ever played a kid’s audience? Would you want to?
The short answer is no. I've done children's entertainment, I did birthday parties as a wacky scientist among other things, and not that I didn't enjoy those jobs, but Boats is my time off. I'm also scared that I would start swearing on stage, as I often do when I get excited. On top of that, the subject matter of the lyrics aren't appropriate I'd like to think; one song mentions cigarettes! In conclusion: I write songs for adults, but I'm a pretty sad excuse for an adult.

Where did you grow up?
I spent my elementary school years in North Vancouver, BC. It was awesome! There were so many hidden creeks to play in. Sometimes we put slugs in plastic bags and threw them in the river.

You currently live in Winnipeg. Can you briefly summarize it for us?
There is a great "docu-fantasy" by Guy Maddin called "My Winnipeg." I think it captures the city quite well. It's depressing, mysterious and subtley magical in ways that the locals have lost interest in. Also: one can never, ever leave. Even if they desperately want to.

What’s the music scene like in Winnipeg?
I never have a good answer for this, but I can tell you the local bands I like. Ian LaRue & The Condor, The Paperbacks, The Cannon Bros, Not Animals and Haunter.

Would you consider writing music for movies?

Sure! Hell, I'll write songs for deodorant commercials if I was asked (just maybe not under the Boats name). The reality of being a musician these days is that no one is going to be quitting their day job, and with touring usually that day job is something that you get hired for with the secret intention of quitting a few months later. So these jobs are shitty. So if I can make money while writing crappy music to fund writing music I like then I don't see a problem with that. Is that selling out? Does anyone care about that anymore?

I don’t see your band as a band that would cover songs but if you were to cover a song what would it be?

Anything by Mclusky.

It seems you do well making music with thrift store instruments which I take is not from choice but lack of funds. If you get bigger and have more to spend on new instruments, how will that change your sound or music if it changes it at all?
We'd have the same instruments, we'd just have more of them and hard-shell cases so they don't break. I buy everything from thrift stores and I am very proud of the finds I have accrued.

In an acoustic show, what makes up the band’s instrumentation? {See video of an acoustic performance from Boats below.}
Usually an acoustic guitar, the harmonium, and a glockenspiel.

Imaginary US tour ~ What’s your wish list of cities to play? {Boats has played the US before when stopping through for SXSW.}

1. Memphis
2. Portland, Oregon. I have some family there so I've spent some time in the area and it would be great to play there sometime.
3. Seattle
4. New York
5. Austin

However, if I've learned anything about touring, it's that the best shows are often the ones you don't expect. There are little pockets of awesome everywhere in the world, so one needs to figure out some sort of mathematical equation to be a part of one of these pockets at the right time. For example, we toured the US in March and our NYC show was pretty lousy. We played for 15 minutes to just my cousin. However... Minneapolis on a Wednesday night was the best show of the tour.

Web / MySpace / Facebook / Buy Album

Photos of Mat and Boats band members courtesy of Boats.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Album Review ~ Cannonballs, Cannonballs by Boats

As I consider myself a fervent collector of undeniably good music, I’m surprised I just discovered the music of Canadian band Boats. It’s been over two months since the band has released their second album “Cannonballs, Cannonballs” but another raving review although past due is well-deserved.

After sifting through so many average songs to find a new addition to my handpicked music collection, I came across the song “Chrome Eyelids” and in the first few seconds, felt I found something extraordinary. As I searched for more songs by Boats, a band I’d never heard of, I realized the one song I found wasn’t a fluke. Boats led by singer/songwriter Mat Klachefsky churns out great music, too great to be categorized in any constricting genre. With the energetic tunes and well composed mix of instruments, I did something I rarely do – buy an entire album from one band.

Cannonballs, Cannonballs is a well thought out set of songs from yes, a fun group with crazy lyrics but also, after stepping back from all the enjoyment, a group of seriously good musicians. Even regarding the much talked about singing voice of Mat Klachefsky, the voice ,that seems to reference a little heavier rock style, such as the band Coheed and Cambria, works perfect with the Boats sound he created. Based on my personal taste in music that spans many genres but is still particular about musical refinement, Boats is the first band that got the mix just right.

Track List ~ Cannonballs, Cannonballs
My Favorites are Marked with an Asterick*

*Sunrise on the Muffin District
*Haircuts for Everybody
*Drinking the Lake
**Chrome Eyelids
Movie Scores, We Hummed
*Smokestack & Lucy’s Magnificient Cabaret
Breakfast, Coffee, Lunch, Internet
TV Scientist
Summercamps vs The Fake Moustache Tree
*Our Athletic Friends
A Tinfoil Everything
*An Army of House Pets Pt 2.

Web / MySpace / Facebook / Buy Album

By the way, I also had to buy their first album Intercontinental Champion. I can't wait to have both with me on the long drive today.

Stay tuned for an entertaining interview with frontman Mat Klachefsky and the “How to Make a Boats Show” graphic guide I created with Mat. { Duct tape is a key element in making a Boats show. }A preview of the custom duct tape font I created for the guide from real duct tape is below. Graphic inspiration from Attack NYC.

A Time for Happiness

To someone always concerned about the happiness of others, I look forward to celebrating YOUR happiness on the day you make your man the luckiest guy on Earth.

Congratulations Reathanak and Curtis!

Here are photos from our fun time in Atlanta at the 12 Hotel recently.
Black and white film with sepia blend and color slide film photos by Sophorn.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Memphis Redbirds Baseball Park ~ Kid Approved

The beautiful Redbirds baseball stadium is not just a great place to watch baseball but a great place to entertain the kids with their carnival games and rides, playground, the grassy bluff and fireworks. I gave Atticus several options to watch fireworks for his birthday weekend last week, but when I mentioned the baseball stadium, he perked up, and without saying a word, grabbed my head and pulled me in for a big fat kiss. Decision made.

He had a blast riding the Rocky Hopper for the first time. He even tried a little cardboard surfing down the hill, but with just one square foot of cardboard, he didn't get very far. The Independence Day celebration also included parachuters that stopped all play for a moment as everyone looked to the sky. { He didn't know quite where to look at first then quickly turned around.}

After the game, the fireworks made a good end to a great night. Happy Birthday Atticus!
{ His actual birthday party was yesterday so celebrations have literally been week long. }

Redbirds' Fireworks Schedule for the rest of the season.
Fri, July 23 / Sat, July 31 / Sat, Aug 14, Elvis Night / Fri, Aug 20 / Fri, Aug 27

Memphis Redbirds Baseball Stadium
Downtown 3rd and Union Ave.

Photos by Sophorn

Friday, July 9, 2010

To Crave ~ South of Beale Sweet & Spicy Popcorn

Sometimes the best things in life are free. At South of Beale gastropub, another "to crave" item in Memphis is their complimentary popcorn because of the sweet and spicy seasoning. When I posted my review of their amazing Sunday Brunch a few months ago, I absolutely forgot to mention the popcorn. Christopher raves over it, but now after last week's visit, Atticus' new love for this popcorn will make it hard for the three of us to share any small bowl together.

Sweet and Spicy Seasoning ~ Main Ingredients
Thanks to Ed at South of Beale for sharing this over the weekend! He said these were ones he remembered.
~Brown Sugar
~Black and White Pepper

Atticus hoarded the small bowl shown in the photos and even grunted at Spiderman trying to take a peek. Imagine his reaction to me. Let's just say I snuck bites here and there when he wasn't looking making him believe he finished the popcorn by himself.

South of Beale
361 S. Main Street
Memphis, TN 38103
Ph +1.901.526.0388
Project Green Fork Certified
Open Monday to Thursday 4pm to 12ish / Friday to Saturday 4pm to 3ish / Sunday 11am to 10ish

Twitter / Facebook / Sunday Brunch Menu / Summer Dinner Menu

South of Beale on Urbanspoon

Photo/graphics by Sophorn.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Business Stationery / Habitat for Hope / Test 1


Based on the previously completed business cards, the letterhead design followed using a similar design language but had to be formatted to printing on hand on a regular printer. This meant no full bleed of course. I also wanted to continue the idea of feeling stable/grounded but growing when placing the graphic logo and company information text. It either grows along the side or is grounded along the bottom. It is important to mention that the graphics do not take more room than necessary to fit more content on the letter and thus save paper.

This ribbon is referencing the green blade in the brochure design and thank you cards. It may be a problem that the HFH leaf mark is not in this option so I added it below. It looks more organic so to emphasize that the information text is at different lengths.

The above option just explores a sort of back to basics approach using the logo in it's traditional layout. I just wonder if the website address may be at all confusing.
The layouts below are just a quick look at possible adding the logo to the backside that will be seen when tri-folded for an envelope. The recipient can possibly get a message like 'hello' or any phrase HFH chooses.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

I Love Memphis Blog and Sign Redesign / Test 1

The words "I Love Memphis" and Kerry Crawford, the force behind the I Love Memphis blog, are almost inseparable. Through her blog, many Memphians' express their love of the city by taking a photo with the I Love Memphis sign . In my 3-d graphic experimentation phase, I thought I could do my own graphic interpretation of that sign for Kerry. Experiments are shown above with just some ideas of layout and the heart with the word love. The last image shows a boundary of area where I thought a map of Memphis could be overlayed.

Kerry also requested a look at redesigning the blog header. See below. The images are from her blog from her "Reasons to Love Memphis."

Photo/graphics by Sophorn.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Memphis Fireworks Schedule + Summer Travel Mix

2010 Schedule of Fireworks in the Memphis Area

{ Saturday, July 3, 2010 }
Downtown Memphis /Redbirds Stadium / Fireworks as Game Finale
Shelby Farms* /Fireworks after sunset
Collierville / H.W.Cox Park / 5:30 Events / 9:35 Fireworks
Millington / Navy Lake / 5:00 Events / Fireworks after sunset

{ Sunday, July 4, 2010 }
Germantown / Municipal Park / 5:00 Events / 9:10 Fireworks

Downtown Memphis /W.C. Handy Park, Beale St. / 6:00 Music / 10:00 Fireworks

Color Film Photo ~ Shelby Farms* by Sophorn

{ Bonus }
My music mix that can either be a good travel mix or a summer weekend party mix.

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones
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