Friday, October 29, 2010

Emilio Gomariz

Spain based artist Emilio Gomariz likes to push the boundaries of how technology effect art not only through its implementation but also through presentation. Gomariz' work is innately dark and hypnotic. To see more of Emilio's work, go to

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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Via Ako: Tron:Legacy - Derezzed

Anticipation of the new Tron film is growing but so is the accompanying soundtrack scored none other than by Daft Punk. As an enthusiast of electronic music, OTW advocate Ako Jefferson was sure to point out his excitement on this project. Take a click below and listen in.

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Solediction Love for Vans OTW

The web is a funny place. I've met a great deal of people online, some people who I've known for years and others who are new faces. Angelo Logan is one such young man who I met through an email, he's young and talented, check out his site -, he also is part of the Sole Diction team, a great online resource for street fashion trends. Naturally I wanted Angelo to represent Vans OTW and he recently hit me back with a link and a video of a video lookbook that he and the team created.

Source: Sole Diction

Take a look of the finished short film below:

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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

BMW R1200R ‘Flash’ Art Bike

It's no secret that OTW advocate Dimitri Coste is an avid motorcycle enthusiast. Coste also happens to be a gifted photographer as well so his recent product and portraiture shots of the BMW R1200R 'Flash' art bike designed by husband and wife team, Mark Eley and Wakako Kishimoto was destiny in the making. If you look closely you'll notice that the R1200R is not a stock bike, BMW really went out of their way in creating a unique one off yet there still lies a chance that this bike might make it to limited production. Meanwhile take a peak of the wonderful photos taken by Dimitri.

Source: BMW Motorcycle Magazine

Photo by Dimitri Coste

Mark Eley, artist and motorcycle enthusiast, with the R1200R. Photo by Dimitri Coste

A BMW R1200R roadster motorcycle subtly altered with Eley Kishimoto’s signature monochrome Flash graphic on the bodywork.

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Monday, October 25, 2010

Patrick Martinez

The recent new issue of Juxtapoz magazine caught my eye due to the cover story of Barbara Kruger, the ground breaking artist who was known for reappropriating images and cleverly placing witty copy into her work. Her black and white images and her incessant use of the futura font could very well have influenced famed art skate brand Supreme.

And yet when I opened the issue, I was surprised to be taken by another feature story of noneother than LA's own Patrick Martinez. Martinez also happened to be interviewed than noneother than Vans OTW advocate Mister Cartoon. I met Patrick many years ago at the Soul Assassins studio while visiting Estevan Oriol, immediately I was taken in by Patrick's work. There's no question about his sheer talent and skill set, yet it was the subject matter that Patrick so effortlessly and boldly would portray that took be aback. When I see Patrick's work I see Jeff Koons meets street graffiti, but if you look closer, there's something deeper, something dark and something so uniquely brilliant about Patrick's commentary regarding pop art, latino gangland culture, consumerism and Los Angeles noir. I was amazed then when I saw Patrick's work and I am through and through impressed by the mature growth of his work. 

To see more of Patrick Martinez' work, go to -

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Breaking Bread

Listening to a good conversation is sometimes as read a good book. Recently I got wind of a nice blog project called Breaking Bread Sessions created by Vince Chan and Matt. The format is simple, a creative conversation shared over the course of a meal.

According to their site:

Breaking Bread Sessions is a series of podcasts where Matt and Vince have a meal with an individual that is in the creative field. The conversations are taped giving the listener an opportunity to be a fly on the wall to gain insight on how that creative person ticks. We were influenced by Adrian Shaughnessy's, except we substituted music for food and we're not as classy. We are unapologetic about the sound quality and we welcome the interruptions during the interview. Enjoy.

Take a listen via

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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Dalton Trumbo

Donald Trumbo is one of my personal heroes. At the height of his illustrious career he was the most celebrated screenwriter during the golden age of Hollywood having written the stories of Spartacus, Roman Holiday and Exodus just to name a few. Trumbo was unfortunately the victim of the blacklist as the result of the infamous trials judges from the "House Un-American Activities Committee" which deemed him affliated with the communist party and having contempt for the court. Trumbo did not want to have anything to do with this court proceedings declaring his constitutional rights and he had an open disregard for the unnecessary fear hazing spurred by Senator Joseph McCarthy that was blanketing the Hollywood community.

When Trumbo was put forth before the committee, he decided to take this opportunity to question his questioners. Needless to say that this approach was not viewed in good humor, Trumbo was reprimanded. Take a look below:

Soon after the trials, Trumbo was convicted as a member of the communist party even though he had no interlinking whatsoever. The result of this blacklist put Trumbo and his family in a state of economic hardship. Trumbo would eventually move to Mexico with his family and would continue to write his screenplays through multiple pseudonym. In fact when he actually was nominated and won the academy award for best screenplay for "The Brave One" in 1965, his pseudonym was under the name of Robert Rich. The academy award was left unclaimed until after his death.

I was fortunate enough to come across Trumbo's documentary and I'd highly recommend you to watch this film and learn more about this man. Here's an excerpt from the film below:

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Friday, October 22, 2010

Tame Impala

Australian band Tame Impala has been recording music that hearkens the era of the 60s' psychedelic period.

According to Evil Monito, "The music vid is directed by creative minds of Special Problems (Cut Off Your Hands, Mercy Arms.) An animated wonderland featuring the band playing amongst a colorful spattering of humming birds, sumo wrestler, monkeys and other psychedelic non sequiturs."

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Burn Baby Burn

French artist Olivier Kosta-Thefaine knows a thing or two about vandalism with purpose. His medium to this approach is however something quite different than one would expect. Olivier likes to burn things to manifest his art.

Upon a slight glance, what you see are trees.

Yet an even closer look reveals Olivier's neat technique. Olivier is currently exhibiting at the Alice Gallery in Brussels, Belgium.

For more on Olivier, go to

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Air Bag Helmet

Helmets have certainly played an intrinsic role when it comes to safety for your average bike enthusiast to your pro skater. A recent innovation from Swedes Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin have created an interesting approach to protective helmet technology. They call it "Hövding" (chieftain in Swedish) and the device is stored inside a special collar which pops open, much like a car air bag, covering and cushioning your head from a fall. One can see its use in skating as well.

Source: Dvice

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Young Bob Dylan

Taking a quick gander of today's musicians and you think about what these artists stand for, what sort of message do they bring to their audience, there's only a small minority of them that actually represent something bold and thought provoking. Born Robert Allen Zimmerman on May 24, 1941, Bob Dylan did not come from a music background. It was listening to rock and blues stations that would influence Dylan to become on of the most influential musicians in the 20th century.

Take a listen below to a young Bob Dylan fielding press questions. It was apparent that Dylan's role in pop culture transcended music, he became a figure in politics of the then anti-war youth movement that was sweeping across America.

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Monday, October 18, 2010

House of Vans NYC

Last Saturday was the opening of the new skate/event venue, House of Vans which is located in Brooklyn's Greenpoint.

Vans OTW Advocates, The Blackouts and Eric Elms were among the crowd.

According to Hypebeast:

"The House of Vans is a 25,000 square foot renovated warehouse featuring an indoor concrete bowl & outdoor street course, a permanent stage for concerts and enough space to pretty much do anything the brand’s imaginations allow. John Cardiel and Tony Alva led off the music for the evening with DJ sets as artist Mike Giant began creating a custom piece on the back wall by the bowl. Gilbere Forte followed up with a rap-infused set as the crowd began to grow in anticipation of an appearance by Public Enemy. Mos Def then quietly took to the stage and quickly stole everyone’s attention in a surprise performance. The Blackouts, Atiba and Ako Jefferson, then eased everyone into the night with a reggae-infused mix."

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Brandon Jan Blommaert

Brandon Jan Blommaert seems preoccupied with the unknown. His works are based in empty space, a place where desolation not only dominates his imaginary realm, desolation is the incubus for looking at the world differently. At times Blommaert's whimsical approach reminds me of Michel Gondry's and Spike Jonze' early works. Take a look below and enjoy his world.

This is "BLACK_MOON":

This is "war_bells":

This is Blommaert's latest work entitled, "America's_Most_Haunted_Three":

For more on Brandon Jan Blommaert, go to -

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Sunday, October 17, 2010

Quadron Covers Michael Jackson

Quadron is one of my favorite new sounds I've encountered. Take a listen to Quadron's cover of Michael Jackson's  "Baby Be Mine."

According to Evil Monito:

"Lead singer, Coco, pours out her soul like the golden, smoky liquid of fine scotch.  By far, one of the most exquisite reworking of Jackson’s amorous pop ballad. The Copenhagen duo can be found on Plug Research with a forthcoming U.S. release thanks to the efforts of the local LA scene and especially Anthony Valadez of KCRW."

Source: Evil Monito

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Friday, October 15, 2010

Atomic Tom

Brooklyn based rock band Atomic Tom were the recent victims of theft as all their instruments were stolen. Luckily they found an innovative way to improvise by utilizing their iPhones and performing their song, "Take Me Out" inside the B Train. The result is stunningly well executed. At times like these you can't help but be envious of New York.

Source: Dvice

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

May The Force Be With You

Star Wars meant a great deal for not only sci-fi junkies but for the curious and open mind of a mass audience. Of the original trilogy, many fans of the Star Wars saga point out their cult favorite to be Episode V, "The Empire Strikes Back" as capturing the true spirit of the franchise. A new coffee table book aptly entitled, The Making of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back is now available and Vanity Fair had a dibs on selection of images below.

What has become an iconic photograph of Hamill, George Lucas, Fisher, and Ford (in the background are chief hairdresser Barbara Ritchie; Michael J. Duthie, an editor who happened to be visiting the set that day; and assistant to director Debbie Shaw, daughter of actor Robert Shaw).

When Darth Vader (David Prowse) revealed his secret to Luke, Hamill was hanging onto a pinnacle above mattresses placed on cardboard boxes about 30 feet off the ground.

Peter Mayhew, as Chewbacca, with Fisher.

The Boba Fett costume was built by several crew members and painted by Joe Johnston. “I painted Boba Fett’s outfit and tried to make it look like it was made of different pieces of armor,” says Johnston. “It was a symmetrical design, but I painted it in such a way that it looked like he had scavenged parts and done some personalizing of his costume; he had little trophies hanging from his belt, little braids of hair, almost like a collection of scalps.”

Source: Vanity Fair

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Wisdom of Quincy Jones

They say wisdom comes with age and it's interesting to wonder if the saying is indeed true, does age with wisdom make one a sage. I enjoy listening to stories, stories that tell a tale that humble you. Often times we forget about the greats, the ones that still live and inform us of what life once was. I came across this youtube clip of Quincy Jones telling his story of his childhood living in the south side of Chicago and how he came to fall in love with his craft of music.

Mr. Jones would of course later be known for his seminal production work of Michael Jackson's Thriller which has since sold over 110 million records, a feat that still stands in the record books. I was fortunate enough to come across this intimate interview of Quincy Jones and Michael Jackson during the making of that very debut album which would make Michael Jackson an international music icon. Take a look into true magic coming into fruition.

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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Skateboarding In Watercolor

Christopher St. Leger is an accomplished painter residing in a small central Texas town, yet his vision of the world certainly captures the magic and intensity that only the medium of watercolor can draw out.  His work reminds me of the early innocence of spending hot summer days with your friends, skating and enjoying each other's company without a care of the world. What I really gravitate towards Leger's work is how well he captures light and movement, movements that appear so real and organic that it reminds you of those days of analog photography and equally exuding the warmth of that rebellious yet fraternal element which binds together the love of skateboarding.

For more of his work, we encourage you to check out his site at

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The Art of Jeff Nishinaka

The wonders of what simple application of art can have on paper. Jeff Nishinaka has effectively learned a few tools of his trade in approach the art of manipulating paper to create wondrous pieces of art. Jeff considers paper as a "living breathing thing with a life of it's own." Clearly you can see the man has his handle on his craft in a deft manner.

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Monday, October 11, 2010

Via Ako: Avey Tare

Hand Drawn and Created by Abby Portner (Dave's sister from Animal Collective).

According to Pitchfork Media:

The lead single from Down ThereAvey Tare's first proper solo album, is a pulsing combination of bassy electronic beat and brain-worming vocal melody. On the surface, it's not too far from Avey-led songs on Merriweather Post Pavilion like "Summertime Clothes". The crucial difference is that while his singing was loud and clear on that infectious track, here he moans like a ghost, whines like a mourner, and drowns himself in multi-track and reverb. All of which give the song a thick, spooky atmosphere, morphing its propulsive beat into something ominous. That might paint "Lucky 1" with too dark a brush-- certainly there's enough bounce and hook here to make you more apt to nod along than zone out. But compare "Lucky 1" to a song it resembles melodically-- Johnny Nash's reggae-inflected 1970s hit "I Can See Clearly Now"-- and Avey Tare's knack for making a tune simultaneously bright, shady, and mysterious comes into focus.

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Mr. Show

The '90s were a great time for comedy. One of the highlights of that golden age of sketch comedy was a duo made up by David Cross and Bob Odenkirk of which their show, aptly titled Mr. Show was a hit on HBO.

Both its creators and many of the actors on the show later when on to become staples in American comedy. Some of the cast included Sarah Silverman, Jack Black and Tom Kenny (voice of SpongeBob SquarePants). What made Mr. Show stand out from the rest wasn't necessarily a comedy routine that was well crafted and delivered with comedic timing, Mr. Show's sketches were inherently post modern, often times the joke was on them about them. Founders David Cross and Bob Odenkirk would constantly push the limitations of social commentary to the point of exhaustion.

Take a look below and watch a scene from their classic "Audition" sketch:

Others would declare other shows such as the Canadian classic, The Kids In The Hall as refining the genre of sketch comedy but Mr. Show really dug deep into the absurdity of pop culture, the stagnation of intelligence and the open celebration of chaos in such a way that the commentary often times became the but of the joke. In case you missed this show in the 90s, be sure to check out the past seasons via DVD at your local store. Breathe in the magic.

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Friday, October 8, 2010

Youtubers Review Vans OTW

We love youtube and we love youtubers who go out of their way to show Vans OTW love via their video reviews. We wanted to acknowledge a few youtubers out there and present their accompanying videos.

Thanks to Hot Rod Los Angeles for their review on the OTW Collection:

Thanks to Tactics Boardshop for their review on a pair of Bedfords:

Tactics Boardshop also reviewed a pair of Larkins:

Here's another review from Tactical Boardshop on a pair of Alomars:

Thanks to krodosk8r for his review on a pair of Alomars:

Thanks to hotreviewstud for his review on a pair of Alomars:

Thanks to 3TVID for his review on a pair of Alomars:

3TVID also reviewed a pair of Fraziers:

And lastly but certainly not least, thanks to Titus Flatspots hailing from Germany for his review on a pair of Bedfords:

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