Sunday, December 25, 2011

Favorite LongReads of 2011

Playing of the trending meme of #LongReads, below a list of my personal favorite stories of 2011.

Nicholas Schmidle

John Jeremiah Sullivan

A.J. Daulerio

Alex French and Howie Kahn

Barry Bearak

Sean Fennessey

Bill Simmons

National Geographic Photos of 2011

Click the below link to see all 15 winning photos in high resolution.

"[NPD in its Imaging Confluence Study] found that smartphones accounted for 27 percent of photos shot this year — last year, the number was 17 percent. Accordingly, photos shot with dedicated cameras dropped from 52 to 44 percent.

“There is no doubt that the smartphone is becoming ‘good enough’ much of the time; but thanks to mobile phones, more pictures are being taken than ever before,” NPD’s Liz Cutting said in a statement."

Famed celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz said that the iPhone is “the snapshot camera of today” and that it’s “accessible and easy” during a November appearance on NBC.

In June, the iPhone 4 surpassed the Nikon D90 and Canon EOS 5D Mark II as the top camera on Flickr."

Saturday, December 24, 2011


"Best Surefire Crowd-Pleaser That Wasn't: Warrior
This one's failure to ignite with the great American male public is a mystery to all of us here at your favorite magazine. So just remember how Fight Club didn't do boffo business either before turning cult classic. Starring Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton as a modern-day Cain and Abel - not to mention Nick Nolte as their dad, a grim fraud midway between Adam and God - director Gavin O'Connor's mixed martial-arts lollapalooza was The Deer Hunter divided by Rocky and multiplied by East of Eden."

- Tom Carson GQ - "The Real Best Movies of the Year"
The GQ&A: Warrior Director Gavin O'Connor

Shakespeare Signature $3MM

If Kanye tweets so.

Related -

HAZE x Heineken draught glass


Drake + Lil Wayne + Tyga - "The Motto"

A Young Money video for the Bay.

When are Kanye and Jay-Z going to make a second video for WTT?

Friday, December 23, 2011

Prometheus - Teaser Trailer

Ridley Scott, the well known director of Blade Runner, Gladiator and the original Alien*, is directing Prometheus, a prequel of sorts to the original Alien scheduled for June 8, 2012 release and starring Noomi Rapace (the original Girl with a Dragon Tattoo), Michael Fassbender (of recent Shame fame), Guy Pearce and Charlize Theron.

*The Alien trilogy were directed by Ridley Scott, James Cameron and David Fincher respectively. Not a bad lineage.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Weeknd - Echoes of Silence

The third free mixtape by Toronto-based The Weeknd this year.

Previously on wda-

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Best NBA Dunks - Preseason

The first best dunk of the preseason happened two nights ago. Fourth year player, 6 foot 11, DeAndre Jordan slammed home between the outstretched arms of Lakers Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol.

The Clippers are the slam dunking team to watch out for with the reigning NBA Slam Dunk champion Blake Griffin, D. Jordan and newly traded for best PG of the league, Chris Paul. The addition of Paul led to this reaction video of Griffin and Jordan celebrating and proclaiming their team as Lob City. (a.k.a. there will be many many alley oops)

The second best dunk of the preseason happened over the weekend in the NBA (preseason) debut of Timberwolves PG Ricky Rubio alley ooping to fellow rookie Derrick Williams.

Banksy - "Fallen"

"Is it a statement about crumbling empires in the New World Order? A polemic against classical art forms? A general argument in favor of destroying the old to make way for the new?"

Freshness - "Banksy – “Fallen” Statue"

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Dark Knight Rises Trailer

The first six/seven minutes of the movie can be watched in low-quality here (camera shot in theater). Note that even in its low equality it's epic and worth watching.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Act of Valor

"Act of Valor began as a recruitment video for the U.S. military's Naval Special Warfare Command. In 2007, Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh of Bandido Brothers Production filmed a video for the Special Warfare Combatant-craft Crewmen which led the Navy to allow them to use SEALs for Act of Valor."

- Wikipedia - "Act of Valor"
Scheduled for a February 17, 2012 release.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Frank Ocean Shadow

Frank Ocean in the December issue of L’Uomo Vogue.

Previously on wda-

Lana Del Rey - "Born To Die"

Lana's debut major studio album, Born To Die, is scheduled for January 31, 2012 worldwide release.

Previously on wda-

JR - Los Angeles

GQ captured French photograffeur and TED 2011 prize award winner JR's recent work in Los Angeles.

Previously on wda-

Website Original Designs

Mashable has put together screenshots of what the world's biggest websites looked like when they first launched.

Above, the New York Times and Amazon site designs in 1996 and 1995 respectively. Click the below link to see the original Google, YouTube, Facebook, Yahoo and Twitter.

U.S. Secret Military Programs

The stealth helicopter that was used in the Osama Bin Laden raid, the spy drone plane that was brought down in Iran a week ago and 7 other secret military programs according to Wired.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Banksy - "Cardinal Sin"

BBC News - "Banksy unveils church abuse work"
"Cardinal Sin is a bust with its face sawn off and replaced by blank tiles, designed as a response to the child abuse scandal in the Catholic church.

In a statement, Banksy said: "I'm never sure who deserves to be put on a pedestal or crushed under one."

The sculpture was unveiled at the Walker Art Gallery [in Liverpool, England], where it is sitting alongside 17th Century religious art."

The Dictator

Sacha Baron Cohen writes, produces and stars in The Dictator along with Ben Kingsley, John C. Reilly, Anna Faris and Megan Fox. In theaters May 11, 2012.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Banksy - London + Liverpool

Three new Banksy pieces have been found in the U.K. the last few days. The first two were found in London and the last (the love plane) in Liverpool.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Dark Knight Rises - Poster

According to [Christopher] Nolan Fans, "A new trailer will debut next week at Digital IMAX showings of the new Mission Impossible, and in front of the new Sherlock Holmes. The Dark Knight Rises hits theaters on July 20, 2012."

And according to Fast Company, the previously reported 7-minute prologue that will be airing at chosen Digital IMAX theaters on Dec. 16 has "been shot thousands of feet in the air, where audiences can expect to encounter this installment's villain named Bane (played by Inception's Tom Hardy) and a plane that gets its wings plucked cleaner than a chicken."

P.T. Anderson's The Master

BlackBook magazine posted the first behind-the-scene photos of the filming of Paul Thomas Anderson's next film, The Master, scheduled for a late 2012 release starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, Joaquin Phoenix and Amy Adams.

Anderson and the cast have vehemontly denied the connection, but the story of The Master has alleged strong parallels (or is the same story) to the founding of Scientology and L. Ron Hubbard.

If you haven't, I suggest reading the New Yorker's February 2011 piece on Scientology that required 971 fact-checking question and answers and a solid week of meetings between the TNY's and the CoS's lawyers.

Mapping the Greatest Journeys

Good Magazine has created an interactive world map that explores "the greatest journeys" including Jack Kerouac's On the Road (above), the Lewis and Clark expedition, Columbus 1492, Charles Lindbergh, Amelia Earhart and the Orient Express among many more.

Blake Lively's Art Collection

Actress Blake Lively spoke with Artlog about her personal collection and beliefs in amassing art.

Artlog - "Inside Blake Lively's Art Collection"

Tennis - "Origins"

Gorilla vs. Bear

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Will Ferrell Makes Free Ads for Old Milwaukee

"Back in September, Will Ferrell approached the Pabst Brewing Co. and asked if he could shoot a series of ads for Old Milwaukee, for no charge. The company said yes. Three spots are now running in local TV ad buys in the Davenport, Iowa, area, and they are hilarious."
Business Insider - "These Ads Will Ferrell Made For Old Milwaukee Will Be Huge"

Taiwan Tower

The 1,000 foot tall steel structure (the same height as the Eiffel Tower) designed by Tokyo-based architect Sou Fujimoto is, according to Wikipedia, "a futuristic tower planned for construction in Taichung,Taiwan. It will be over 300 meters high, and have eight "Blimps" that carry people to the top of the tower. It will resemble a tree trunk, with the blimps resembling leaves. The "leaves" will be able to carry up to 80 people at a time. Construction is planned to begin in 2012. Its design is supposed to be eco- friendly, using natural ventilation, and dome light for basements and museums."

Ho Chi Minh City

Beautiful time-lapse video by photographer Rob Whitworth.

Air - "Seven Stars"

NME - "Air collaborate with Beach House's Victoria Legrand on new song - audio"

French music duo Air were commissioned back in 2010 "to provide a new soundtrack to a hand coloured version of Georges Méliès 1902 silent film Le Voyage Dans La Lune (Journey To The Moon).

Discovered in 1993, the coloured print was restored and premiered this year at the Cannes Film Festival in France, with Air's soundtrack. Air decided to extend the soundtrack into a full album, which as well as Legrand, features vocals from Au Revoir Simone.

The album, 'La Voyage Dans La Lune', is due for release on February 6, 2012."
You may recognize the name George Méliès as the character Ben Kingsley portrayed in Martin Scorsese's new film Hugo.

Grand Theft Auto III Mobile

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Grand Theft Auto III, Rockstar Games will be releasing the original Playstation 2 game for iPhone and Android phones on Dec. 15 for $4.99.

Heisman Finalists

Neither the voting public nor ESPN analysts agree, but my (non-counting) vote goes to LSU true sophomore cornerback, punt returner and all-around game changer, no. 7, Tyrann Mathieu, a.k.a. "the Honey Badger."

$100,000 High Line Billboard

The art installation/billboard canvas on 18th Street next to the High Line now features the Woodrow Wilson $100,000 US bill thanks to artist John Baldessari.

Heineken BeerFriender

App goes live on Wednesday at

TDKR Prologue 12/16

On December 16, select IMAX theaters playing Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol will screen the opening sequence/prologue to this summer's The Dark Knight Rises.

Above, Christian Bale as Batman and Tom Hardy as Bane. And, below, Anne Hathaway as Catwoman.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Art Basel 2011

Check out reviews and many more pictures from this year's international contemporary art fair, Art Basel, held in Miami this past weekend at -

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Miniatur Wunderland

"Miniatur Wunderland (German for miniature wonderland) is a model railway attraction in Hamburg, Germany and the largest of its kind in the world."
Gizmodo - "The World’s Largest Model Railroad Adds the World’s Largest Model Airport"

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Throne at the Victoria Secret Show

Jay-Z and Kanye West performing "______ in Paris" during last night's Victoria Secret Show.

Daniel Day-Lewis as Abraham Lincoln

The first photo of Daniel Day-Lewis in hair/makeup as Abraham Lincoln appeared on Twitter today as a Richmond, VA resident caught him at a local restaurant.

The Steven Spielberg-directed biography film is being shot now for a Winter 2012 release.

Nike Zoom KD IV "Weatherman"

"Paying tribute to Kevin Durant’s fascination with his second career choice as a weatherman, Nike Basketball officially unveils the “Weatherman” edition of KD’s fourth signature design, the Nike Zoom KD IV. A bold green upper representing a green screen, thermo-mapping scans of Kevin’s actual footprint on the outsole."

Available Dec. 10 at Foot Locker House of Hoops locations.

Hypebeast - "Nike Zoom KD IV “Weatherman”

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

So happy the NBA is on its way back

Kevin Durant, J Cole and Sam Cooke in this Nike ad.

7 Billion

Click image to enlarge.

Visualization-information firm Fathom created 'Dencity' to show where our world population lives now at seven billion. Colors get lighter and dots get smaller the denser the population.

Basketball vs. Football

"But here is the tricky part for the N.B.A. as it moves forward with its most potent teams inhabiting the glamour markets of Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, Boston, Dallas and possibly soon New York: Will the sport ultimately benefit or bomb without superteams playing deep into June?

Professional football — wildly popular as metaphorical war, manned by costumed foot soldiers — is seldom marketed as a game of stars or even as a showdown of cities. It is primarily about Cowboys and Giants, Steelers and Ravens."

Lego Christmas Tree

After two months of construction, the LEGO Christmas tree in London's St. Pancras Station is finally complete.
"The project utilizes 600,000 LEGO bricks to compose 172 branches and 1,200 Christmas balls, all of which make up a 10-meter festive installation."

DesignBOOM - "LEGO christmas tree in london"

A$AP Rocky + Crew Selector Freestyles

New York rapper ASAP Rocky and his collective group ASAP appeared on's Selector show yesterday.

Selector, hosted by Larry Fitzmaurice, is like the 2011 version of Rap City the Basement. Each episode features an interview and then each featured rapper is offered two beats to perform a "freestyle." Varying from the old BET show though each episode's setting is different. Anywhere from a stoop or bodega in Brooklyn to a laser tag place in Queens.

Click here to see previous episodes of Selector with freestyles from the Clipse, Big Boi, Das Rascist, Lil B, Curren$y and more.

McDonald's French Fry Billboard

Chicago creative agency Leo Burnett came up with the light up French Fry billboard that will stand in Chicago, on North Clark and West Ontario, until December 8.

PSFK - "Chicago Billboard Beams Lights That Resemble McDonald’s Fries [Pics]"

Saturday, November 26, 2011


"America–the country that invented the modern assembly line, the skyscraper, the airplane, and the personal computer–has lost its belief in the future.

[Peter] Thiel thinks that Americans who are beguiled by mere gadgetry have forgotten how expansive technological change can be. He looks back at the fifties and sixties, the heyday of popularized science and technology in this country, as a time when visions of a radically different future was commonplace."

Friday, November 25, 2011

Phones Intervening in Life

"Idea Wizard" (-FastCo) Renny Gleeson, Global director of digital strategies, Wieden+Kennedy.

The Weeknd - "The Knowing"

The first music video from Toronto native Abel Tesfaye.

Vice TV

"Taste merchant" (-FastCo) Shane Smith, cofounder of ViceMedia, is currently working with HBO and Bill Mahrer to produce a "younger" 60 Minutes.

"Programming could include segments on topics ranging from slave labor in the Sudan or wars in the Congo to domestic issues such as America's methamphetamine epidemic."

"Vice TV" could air on HBO as soon as next fall, he said, although Vice will likely have to shoot a pilot before HBO agrees to air the series."
WSJ - "Vice, HBO Develop New Show for 'Young People'"

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Jay Gastby, Daisy Buchanan and Nick Carraway

The first photos from Baz Luhrmann (Romeo + Juliet and Moulin Rouge)'s The Great Gatsby filming in Australia above and below.