Polaroid pogo-go!

I’ve always been a fan of Polaroid’s and instant photography. As a keen photographer and artist, exploring how you observe the world individually through photography is something very challenging and exciting. How we vary as people through our differing backgrounds and settings. Capturing frames that inspire, challenge and change our perception of our beautiful ever-changing world. When I heard of the new Polaroid pogo it’s something I thought could be interesting to document our transforming urban landscape. So I decided everyday for the next year I would take a picture, documenting life through my eyes, and see what kind of person I am. What makes me different from other people? What makes something visually attractive to me and unfamiliar and not so pleasing to someone else? maybe the beauty is in variety, like creation around us. But nonetheless I’ve been documenting since November and these are my images so far. I will be updating my images monthly and display my favourite week from each month, let me know what you think, or what tones, pictures, settings inspire you?

Imagining peace 2010 Southbank Centre, creatives meet up

On Saturday the 6th of November a dear friend of mine the talented and wonderful Yemisi Blake, a London-based writer and creative mentor at the Southbank centre organised an interactive networking event. A chance for young up and coming creative’s to mingle with one another (with free food yay.) The idea was to give an informal 5-10 min presentation about themselves, what they do and works they have produced. Purely just to learn from one another and our individual involvement in poetry international 2010 “Imagining peace”. Thus being artistically enthused by those around us and that I truly was. We had a range of different people all into differing arts styles, designs, it was fantastic to see that dexterity. From the brilliantly talented Yemisi and his amazing poetry skills that I have seen flourish through out our years together since college. Yes Yem we are that old.

To the enchanting moves and grooves of another former college cohort Shakeel a truly gifted and awe inspiring young dancer, who is part of the dance troupe Goodfoot. Who have currently been going on tour all around the U.K. Motivating  & teaching the youth, portraying to the public the importance of dance in today’s day and age.

Following on we were tantalized by the wicked illustration of Myrto & Sonia whom I had heard of but had never met. It was great to finally associate art pieces to them, and acknowledge who they were because their work fully deserves a lot of praise.

And last but by no means least Mohamed Zain an up and coming spoken word artist who goes by the name on the streets (he tells me) as urban poet. Mohamed Zain has an ability granted by God to capture an audience not just by his lyrical spit at only 18 years but by his amazing vocal singing ability. That very sadly he shy’s away from but needs much kudos and respect for. Speaking of this brings back good memories from when he use to ring a local community radio show I presented with my fellow co-host Zara Peace Saturdays on Radio 96.2fm, where Mohamed Zain would amaze us each week with his beautiful vocal ability.

To conclude it all though honestly speaking I had a fantastic time mingling with other creative’s. I felt part of something new and exciting, is this how the pre-Raphaelites felt before the magic? Who knows? Even though my presentation was majorly underprepared due to no ones fault but my own, it was such a lovely relaxed environment, and I hope it will continue to grow and flourish. Well done to Yemisi Blake for putting all this together and having the energy to keep bugging us to actually do this. Here’s to many more inspiring afternoons.

(From top to bottom Yemisi, Shakeel, Myrto, Sonia and Mohamed Zain.)

Post can also be viewed on the Southbank Centre’s blog: Poetry International 2010, Imagining peace.

Building for charity at the Peace event

How to begin a blog post summarising an experience that lasted over a month and had literal blood, sweat, tears, all nighters and message ringtone dancing. Yes people the descent of out madness stoops to all new lows. But I tell you that tune was catchy! The “Peace event” is an event in the excel centre exhibiting different culture from the arts, media, textiles, books,  knowledge/information, discussions and tasty treats from all over the world.

My involvement came in as a young creative to co-design stalls for two charities, Ulfa and Interpal. Ulfa deals with sectors such as building homes for the homeless. Prefabricated structures, for disaster stricken areas and other housing developments such as orphanages and local community homes. Its other sectors involve feeding the homeless in the U.K (soup kitchen) and abroad, the charity shop a local community Internet radio show, emergency appeals and hospital visits. And many other inspiring projects that they have covered over the years such as mountain walks up mount Snowdon and Ben Nevis. Myself and a team of a few friends conjured up and decided to take on the task, as young creative’s to build the stalls. Our team being the lovely Nadia, Zara, Saf and Isa. Our backgrounds being varied in the arts and humanities fields. Covering different scopes, backgrounds and artistic influences.

The two charity stalls both had different floor plans to adhere to for the design. Interpals being 5 metres x 5 metres and Ulfas space being 3 metres x 2 metres for the stall. The idea was to utilise the spaces and design something unique and visually appealing then your average stall at another convention, with office style partition walls. Over the next month we met initially over tea and cake and visually mapped out what we envisaged and what each stall would try to represent and portray. Ulfa is a fairly new charity and has only been running for a few years, and being its first time at the peace event, the idea was to demonstrate what Ulfa is all about, its sectors, and how people could get involved and help.

Above is our initial 3D modeling of the two spaces, prior to designing. With our 3D rendering and dimensions we were able to head down to a local wood supplier, buy our timber and plywood boards to begin construction.

Looking back construction was probably the longest thing due to not working in a full-equipped workshop. But despite all this and a couple more visits to our local wood manufacturers for even more nails we under-estimated, we were ready to paint our hearts out and happy to get to that stage after we fully completed the construction. Painting was a really exciting stage and a pinnacle moment after weeks of heavy lifting, drilling, sawing. The group all found the painting to be very therapeutic and the period that triggered the most excitement. We ran out of time to get to the stage we aspired to achieve with Interpals stall, due to having to rush to the excel centre and actually deliver and install the walls at the Docklands site. After its was tucked away nicely in our North West London base for about 3 weeks. Nevertheless after all the long hours and hard work we actually were really proud of ourselves and what we managed to achieve in such a small amount of time, realising when you put your mind to anything for a good cause you can achieve it, if your intention is right. The aim was to stand out raise awareness for the charities and to be visually aesthetic to people walking by.  If it caught people’s eyes, making them turn around, pick up a leaflet and listen to the great works these two charities produce day in and day out. Then it was really worth it for the sake of those who life’s we can never fully comprehend and whom we strive to help through this fantastic experience we were lucky to have received.

Construction and design of boards

Ulfas stall and volunteers during the day.

Monday blues…seek some Autumnal therapy

Its October we have all passed September’s re-settling in period, whether its back to work, university, or college, back to the grindstone. Summer is well and truly gone, well that’s if you had a summer. But hey look on the bright side, the enchanting colours of the autumnal season are something to make anyone with Monday blues smile. Intense shades of reds, oranges, pinks, yellows and green. The roads are multicolored if it were. You just have to walk down the road to see the most amazing leaves scattered down the walkway. I’ve probably developed an unhealthy habit this season of picking up beautiful crimson leafs & other intriguing ones that make me feel inspired. Colours you couldn’t think a tree could generate during it shedding (thirst period) and colours you would only associate with summer. Parks, communal gardens and anywhere with a high density of plantation are a treasure trove of hue’s and tones. So next time you feel cold and tired, take a detour through the park you might just see the most beautiful array of colours that could brighten up your day.

SocialVibe, a few clicks that could save lifes

Hello everyone if you are coming to visit my page, firstly thank you very much for doing so. I really appreciate your support and you taking the time to read my blog and I hope you do decide to participate in the various topics and discussions, giving your own views or just merely reading the blog. But please I just wanted to quickly say scroll down and on the bottom left hand side is a initiative called SocialVibe. SocialVibe state on their facebook page that “individuals make a positive, measurable impact for the charity of their choice just by completing branded activities. In just over a year’s time, the SocialVibe community has raised over $700,000 for over forty different non-profits.” Simply all you have to do is fill out a few activities (a few clicks) no personal information really required and big brands promise to help a charity by their initial promotion of you watching their video’s. Its a fantastic way of helping charities and branding at the same time. In a few clicks you could feed a child in Africa, help build a well for those water deprived in developing countries. Or help children with disabilities, depression or home difficulties . I liked the campaign to feed a child in a few clicks and many school children in developing countries could earn a meal by just you doing this very action. So please do if you can, thank you.

The Original Inception

We’ve all watched the movie and pondered at the ending but the painting below is the original Inception. For all those who did not watch the movie Inception directed by Christopher Nolan, is about the notion of constructing a persons dream, altering someone’s mind and the basic fabric of their dream. Making your design their own thoughts thus changing the future.

But from this beautiful painting portraying styles of Romanticism and naturalism. We see that this concept has been one many have dreamed of and painted. I myself have my own romantic ideals about the movie and the ending and think the concept/cinematography is both visually stunning and exciting. Putting people ‘s architectural imagination, creativity and originality to the test.  Altering spaces, places and modifying the standard typography of the ever-changing architectural grid. What utopias would you create in your dream? or what spaces would you construct or deconstruct?  Let your imagination wonder, your dreams are just the beginning.

Fill a box for the flood victims in Pakistan

As we are all very aware the tragic floods in Pakistan have devastated many lives and has affected the local housing, community and infrastructure. Affecting over 4 million people, leaving a vast number homeless, without the basic human essentials of shelter, clean water and food. The scale of the devastation has said to be worse than that of Haiti, the South-East Asian tsunami and the Kashmir earthquake combined. There has been a great number of charities helping and all the well known charities are involved in some sort of initiative to raise funds. Its been distressing to hear that a lot of people have not been donating, the British public raised  more then 100 million in the first week for Haiti, the even vaster natural disaster in Pakistan just raised a mere 10 million in the first week. A lot of people are afraid where the money is going to be sent, and if it is going to actually reach the people, but there are many well known charities declaring aid will be delivered asap or have delivered/delivering aid even as I write this. Recognised charities such as D.E.C (disaster emergency committee) which have been advertising on the TV and local transport all around London.

On Sunday the 19th sept, Imperial university and probably many other university campuses set up a campaign to fill a box. The aim was to pack boxes of vital food supplies and other goods in ‘survival boxes’ and send them to the flood victims. PIA  (Pakistan international airline) are transporting the goods for free and kindly the organisers at Imperial were providing boxes and free transportation for the goods to the airport.

Each box containing the following:
1 x cotton sheet
1 x pack of dates
2 x 1.5L bottles of mineral water
Chocolate
2 x packets of sweet biscuits
2 x packets of salted biscuits
12 x small cartons of juice
Crisps
1.5L of long-life milk
2 x sachets of oral rehydration solution
Plastic glasses
2 x bars of soap

It was fantastic to go along and help fill the boxes. It really put things into perspective when you see someone’s whole life before you in a 17 by 17 inch box. How lucky we are and the very least we can do is either help fill a box or give a little loose change to people bucket collecting. For fellow human beings who’s life supplies can be contained within a corrugated card board box. A lot of people may worry but what would you rather do, just sit back and see millions of people suffer. I know what we all should be doing, but I hope and ask that anyone who is reading this you do take the time to help at least for the millions of children affected. Finally I just wanna give a big shout out and embarrass my friends Saf and Taufiq for gathering their friends and students to get involved. Heading down to Imperial and for actually taking the time to trek around and drive to big super stores/shops to purchase all these items. All I merely did was turn up, pack a few boxes, but they were the real super stars of the day. Along side with the hard working students who we met at Imperial College London.