19th century algae prints by Anna Atkins

These algae prints were misattributed for more than a century before art historian Larry Schaaf discovered that they were the work of British botanist Anna Atkins.

As a pioneer of cyanotype photograms, a process in which sunlight (not a camera) imprints over objects on a piece of coated paper, Atkins produced the blueprints for a book entitled Manual of British Algæ in 1841. She just never got any credit. Thanks to Larry Schaaf's book of Atkins's work, promptly titled Sun Gardens: Victorian Photogramsher work continues to see the light of day.

These algae prints were misattributed for more than a century before art historian Larry Schaaf discovered that they were the work of British botanist named Anna Atkins. #art #photography #science
These algae prints were misattributed for more than a century before art historian Larry Schaaf discovered that they were the work of British botanist named Anna Atkins. #art #photography #science
These algae prints were misattributed for more than a century before art historian Larry Schaaf discovered that they were the work of British botanist named Anna Atkins. #art #photography #science
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The mind is a kite

The gravitational force of paradoxes always flies the mind in different directions, it the unconquerable stick of our intentions.  #amwriting #poetry gif
via giphy

Think about a purple cow, a rainbow-striped zebra, or a dog driving a pick-up truck. Now try to jettison those images from your mind.

Mull over why you're happy and you may cease feeling so.

The process of getting stuck and unstuck originates from the same internal wiring. The unexpected unwanted variable always stings with a force of awareness. Now try this:

Here’s an interesting trick to try: let your arm dangle but continue to think about swinging it in a controlled way without actually doing it. You will notice that your arm does not dangle as freely. You really do have to let the associated mind states go, a trick many uptight people never learn, which makes them poor learners overall. If you can’t let go, an instructional process cannot take over.

Why We Slouch by Venkatesh Rao

The gravitational force of paradoxes always flies the mind in different directions, it the unconquerable stick of our intentions.

Thinking about questions

It’s as if people hold back their inquisitiveness to avoid the pedestal of ridicule. Shying away from raising your hand backlashes over time. Playing it safe merely postpones fear, submerging us into a habit of permanent hesitation that flinches instead of flourishes. #gif #amwriting
via giphy

The more absurd questions, the better.

It’s as if people hold back their inquisitiveness to avoid the pedestal of ridicule. Shying away from raising your hand backlashes over time. Playing it safe merely postpones fear, submerging us into a habit of permanent hesitation that flinches instead of flourishes.

The infinitely curious never left school as an efficient automaton but a creative enforcer. An true explorer of the world calls on themselves to challenge the status quo if only to understand why certain conditions and fixed truths exist in the first place.

Questions are triggers for experiences. It is the inertia of others that presents an opportunity to keep pushing forward.

Something is better than nothing

A lot of people never start because of the fear of imperfection. But when it comes to creating, something is better than nothing. That something could be as little as a blog post -- private or public -- a diary entry, a podcast, or a simple doodle of if you prefer to speak through images, an Instagram post. #gif #art

A lot of people never start because of the fear of imperfection. But when it comes to creating, something is better than nothing. That something could be as little as a blog post — private or public — a diary entry, a podcast, a simple doodle, or if you prefer to speak through images, an Instagram post.

The habit of making and sharing your art builds confidence. Of course, there will always be others that want to put a dent in your endeavors but most people are encouraging.

Even more, two things happen when you show up to produce every day.

  1. Your craft improves.
  2. You establish an archive of work to pull from.

Once your daily practice of making art is set in the stone and you've kicked down the frustration barrier that prevents so many from being consistent, then you can go back and pull inspiration from your work.

New ideas will bloom from the stems of your first drafts, especially the shitty ones. You'll start making connections and flag concepts that need further elaboration or clarification. Through this process, it'll start to become clear what types of work you enjoy, what you want to be known for, and where you want to spend the most time improving.

Creativity is not rocket science but it is still hard work, one that requires both commitment and trial and error. The professional shows up the good days and the bad to hack away at their inner genie. There are zero shortcuts to building quality and long-lasting output.

gif by youngcoconut

The Beatles never look up

A cartoonish modern-day interpretation of the iconic The Beatles Abbey Road album cover. The only thing missing, besides Paul McCartney's shoes, is the Abbey Road zebra-crossing. Chances are the driver also works for Uber. #funny #thebeatles #art

What if the four distracted Beatles never looked up during the Abbey Road album shoot? This cartoon presents a funny, modern-day interpretation of the iconic The Beatles Abbey Road album cover. The only thing missing, besides Paul McCartney's shoes, is the Abbey Road zebra-crossing. Chances are the driver also works for Uber.

Brain on fire

Lest we dump problems on tomorrow, we can change today. There’s no stopping the expectation for improvement. We have to demand progress, even if it means we have to fake it. #gif #amwriting

Like putty, we can be reshaped. We are not stagnant.

Lest we dump problems on tomorrow, we can change today. There’s no stopping the expectation for improvement. We have to demand progress, even if it means we have to fake it.

Positive psychology is a different mode of experiencing. It shall not be forced, but knowing it’s up to us to foster happiness compels us to act with just a little more hope.

The evolution of the spacesuit

The evolution of the spacesuit #space

As spacesuit design continues to become thinner and more dynamic — there are touchscreen sensitive gloves, an attached helmet and built-in ventilation in the latest uniform — it's worth looking at how both US and Russian spacesuits have evolved over time.

Start by looking at the original suit designed for the moon mission above, then check out the diagram below. I still like the simplicity and balance of the Apollo A7-L EVA but the blue Apollo A5-L suit is ace as well.

The evolution of the spacesuit #space #spaceship #spaceart

Prime the pump of knowlege

Curiosity doesn’t come out of nowhere. It is instilled through tidbits of knowledge. No kid’s going to pick up crayons and draw without first seeing how they’re used. #gif #creativity #art
via giphy

Curiosity doesn’t come out of nowhere. It is instilled through tidbits of knowledge. No kid’s going to pick up crayons and draw without first seeing how they’re used.

Humans need a range of information in order to prime the interested pump. After an initial introduction, the rest is up to them to follow up on gathering more artifacts.

Everything can be made more intriguing. It is within the hunt to know more, you discover. The seeker never leaves any ignorance unturned.

The journey is the reward

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In search of wider meanings, we’re left no choice but to chase the person we wish we were. Not surprisingly, it is within that hunt we get exposed to all of our fears and anxieties.

But the journey is non-negotiable. The reward for following our ideals are the small actions along the way they make us happier.

Regret cannibalizes itself for people on the move.

Surfing a world-record 80 foot gigantic wave

Surfing a word-record 80 foot gigantic wave #nature
Francisco Leong/AFP/Getty Images

Nature always makes you feel small. Brazilian surfer Rodrigo Koxa surfed a record-setting 80-foot wave in November 2017 off the coast of Nazaré, Portugal. Just look at the lighthouse and onlookers in perspective to the surfer surrounded by the mountainous wave, or shall we say avalanche. Watch it for yourself.

Philosophy lacks an answer

The point of philosophy is to raise more questions than provide answers. The subject is fodder for thinking. #gif #nietzsche
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The point of philosophy is to raise more questions than provide answers. The subject is a fodder for thinking.

Despite its opacity, philosophy is measurable. It’s an instrument for producing ideas in a sea of sameness. It bubbles with countless abstractions to raise clarity in the gray spaces.

Unlike Google, don’t expect philosophy to diagnose the latest quandary. It’s merely the thread, a canvass for connecting many disparate things into adjacent light. It is in a constant state of beginning with no end in sight.

Over and into the Rainbow Mountain in Peru

The Rainbow Mountain in Peru #travel #traveldestinations #peru
The Rainbow Mountain in Peru #travel #traveldestinations #peru
The Rainbow Mountain in Peru #travel #traveldestinations #peru

I visited Cusco, Peru nearly two years ago but somehow never heard of the Rainbow Mountains while I was there. These skittle-looking ranges also called Vinicunca, are a three-hour ride outside the Peruvian city. The red, yellow, purple, and greenish hues are a result of leftover mineral deposits from ice sheets that once filled the area. It looks like I'll have to make a second trip so I can hike this!

More info here.

Photos via Getty

The missing ingredient

The game is in our heads, not always in our hands. Like a skilled attuner we can produce ideas in a Ford production line and then pull back into idleness.

If you look at Maslow’s Hierarchy, we already have everything we need. The only missing variable is motivation and perhaps some WiFi.

We know nothing and then we accumulate slowly. It is within that process we decide the frequency of knowledge and how we should apply it. Life is an experiment that requires multiple tests, not just multiple choice.

‘Toys are preludes to serious ideas’

Those shiny toys, they give us all the answers and leave little to the imagination. What could unleash creativity like a blank paper does for a pack of gel pens instead turns off the lite-brite of ideas. #technology  #tech #ipad

“Toys are preludes to serious ideas.”

Charles and Ray Eames

Those shiny toys, they give us all the answers and leave little to the imagination. What could unleash creativity like a blank paper does for a pack of gel pens instead turns off the lite-brite of ideas.

Charles and Ray Eames knew about the risks of shiny objects all along.

Looking for aim and purpose

Persistence is the key that separates the professional from the hobbyist. The professional does three things: #giphy #motivation #work
via giphy

Persistence is the key that separates the professional from the hobbyist. The professional does three things:

  • He sticks to a strict schedule
  • He completes the work, no matter the circumstances
  • He progresses, listening to feedback and strengthening his weak points

The professional devours aim and purpose. He is ok with banal routines as a means to validate the placebo.

From hard work to head work, there’s always room for the person who never gives up.