Find out what inspires the talented artists at Nice Shoes by following our blog. This will be updated with audio, video, images, links and anything else we find interesting, exciting, or especially creative!

Chew on pencils? What if there was a pencil that actually welcomed the chewing? Maybe even was edible? Dave Hakkens has invented a pencil that you can actually EAT. Though I am not a pen chewer myself it sounds like a tasty idea. (also a very health hazardous idea, but still…cool.)

Check out how Dave Hakkens made it happen!

Belgian tattoo artist and vegetarian, Wim Delvoye opened an Art Farm Pigs Growth Fund outside Beijing, China, where him and three other tattoo  artists tattoo and pamper their boars and swines. Delvoye says he tattoos pigs because “they grow fast and they are so much better to tattoo than fish. I tattoo them when they are young and I like the way the artwork stretches and distorts over time. Essentially, we invest in small tattoos and we harvest large paintings.”    He started tattooing pig hides from slaughterhouses in the 1990′s and soon after decided he would much rather tattoo young sedated pigs, to watch the drawings expand.

To all those animal activists out there that, like myself, are/were skeptical about the idea, don’t worry. The pigs are sedated during tattooing, so they don’t feel a thing.  When I was researching, someone even asked me if I thought it would embarrass them to be covered in Louis Vuitton symbols and Disney Princesses? My response was simply, “Pigs bathe in mud; I doubt they care about what they look like.” Delvoye assures that the farm where his pigs are kept is highly comfortable, and they are indeed beyond taken care of, even spoiled.

“Liquid Lights are custom built, industrial designed light installations that experiment with the fusion of art, function and environmental consciousness. Liquid Lights create a visual reminder of the precious commodity that water is and our need to protect this natural resource. LED lights, recycled plumbing and hardware, hand sculpted glass drops and found objects are incorporated to contribute to the zero footprint movement in the form of Liquid Light.

5% of all profits go towards the education and action on global water justice issues.”

Liquid Lights are sponsored by The Polaris Institute to educate people about the growing concern with our planets water resources. They use recycled plumbing, hardware, and LED lighting to showcase this issue in a beautifully innovative way. When I first saw these neat looking lamps on Tumblr I thought it was the coolest thing, the way the lights look like actual water dropplets coming out of the pipes. I was mesmerized and sought to find out more.

, 03.21.11

Did you see the moon on Saturday? Take a look at these pictures of the Supermoon!
Photographers (and even NASA) came out in full force last night to experience the largest full moon in more than 18 years (or since 1993). The “supermoon” occurs when the Moon is at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit (perigee). It’s when the Earth, Moon and Sun are all in a line, with Moon in its nearest approach to Earth. Can you believe that Saturday’s full moon appeared 14 percent larger and 30 percent bigger than the smallest full moons the Earth sees?

, 03.16.11

Vimeo and Nikon co-hosted a block rockin party at South by Soutwest this year in an abandoned power plant where DJs Eclectic Method and Diplo performed.  The space was incredible with washes of colored light and audio reactive projections used as backdrops.

Eclectic Method video & Diplo video

, 03.15.11

For those of you who were a fan of last years House of the Devil, director Ti West premiered his new film The Innkeepers at South by Southwest this year.  As House of the Devil recalled Rosemary’s Baby, The Innkeepers is a much more light hearted horror flick in the vein of Fright Night.  Not quite as nostalgic 80′s art directed but still feeling like an older film, Innkeepers is so much fun.  The premise follows two slackers running a hotel on its last leg while conducting paranormal investigations at night.  The film works as well as a comedy as a horror film and is quite suspensful at the end.  As with House of the Devil, the tension builds throughout.  Bonus: Kelly McGillis as a crotchety old mystic.

, 03.15.11

Joanna Wiebe began her discussion with this:

“It is impossible to think about time without an overwhelming emotion at the limitation of human intelligence.”

Heavy stuff! Her research challenges our current model of temporality as a forever progressing forward arrow. Time is experienced; through our bodies, emotions and culture and not always as a parceled linear line. Time compresses and expands based on our tasks and the web enables the looping of temporality in our routine daily life. What role does interaction design play in defining temporal models within our emerging global village?

An intersting historical model was how the Hopi Native American tribe interpreted temporal life. The Hopi didn’t even have a word for “time”. They defined life under two overarching themes of manifest (ritual and activity) and unmanifest (dreams and desires) and their calendars and time measurements reflected this nonlinear model accordingly.

More info here:

, 03.14.11

Nice Shoes loves March Madness! We love it so much that we decided to host a bracket competition and invite Nice Shoes’ devoted fans and followers to join in on the action. The ultimate winner gets two tickets to the upcoming F5 conference, the highly anticipated creativity festival hosted by Motionographer in April.

Our own project, “Versus,” a stereoscopic 3D film will debut in conjunction with the festival!

Are you game? Sign up now, and start entering your bracket picks.

All it takes is clicking this link,, creating a CBS Sports account, or using your existing account, and using the group password: niceshoes2011.

The first game is midday Thursday, March 17th, so be sure to get your picks in by that morning.

Winner will be announced after the final game. Let the games begin, and of course, share the news with your friends!

, 03.10.11

These are some incredible images – Check them out on My Modern Met!

“What I appreciate about these structures (other than their beauty) and hope other people realize, is that they are always changing. I love the fact that if a cave happens to exist a year from when I saw it last (which is rare) it is completely different and often unrecognizable. It is this fact – that my images of caves can and will never be duplicated – that excites me and makes for truly unique imagery.” – Eric Guth

, 03.10.11

Martin Pyper’s typography reminds me of those nail board projects we did in math class but more fun and less mathy.  Click on the image for some cool video of his work in action.

For all you color grading aficionados:

What would your favorite movie look like if you took every frame of the film, laid the footage side by side, and took one big picture of this collage to represent the entire film? The compressed look at the entire film would create a unique color signature in the form of a color bar code.

Check out Inception and The Wizard Of Oz above — you can pinpoint the moment it goes from b&w to color — and this link has a bunch more.

, 03.04.11

Everyone should check this out and take part in it!! Go to InsideOut to get involved :)

INSIDE OUT is a large-scale participatory art project that transforms messages of personal identity into pieces of artistic work. Everyone is challenged to use black and white photographic portraits to discover, reveal and share the untold stories and images of people around the world. These digitally uploaded images will be made into posters and sent back to the project’s co-creators for them to exhibit in their own communities. People can participate as an individual or in a group; posters can be placed anywhere, from a solitary image in an office window to a wall of portraits on an abandoned building or a full stadium. These exhibitions will be documented, archived and viewable virtually.

“Last week we watched as street artist JR came to Long Beach to accept hisTED Prize, plastering Los Angeles with his Wrinkles of the City art project. Today, he received his TED Prize, along with $100,000 to implement his TED Wish: The Inside Out Project. The premise is simple: Upload a portrait of yourself, preferably making a goofy face like his other subjects. You’ll get a poster of yourself back in the mail. Then paste the poster wherever you wish, hopefully on the exterior of a building in your neighborhood. The idea is simple, powerful, and global, just like JR’s work.” – Good Design