06.02.06

Bryan @ Rotofugi


I forgot to post this earlier, but Bryan's going to be part of a show at Rotofugi - a designer toy store near Chicago and Damen. After work, a bunch of us are heading out to stop by and hang out some.



Goodbye, Scott - Again


Scott's been working with us, in a freelance capacity, for many weeks now. In fact, I think he's been here on two or three separate stretches - I've lost track.

After his first "leave," we were all saying goodbye and Bryan decided to be a bit silly and gave him a hug. When Scott returned for another tour of duty, Bryan remarked that Scott "couldn't stay away from the hugs."

It started as a joke that first time, but ever since - Bryan makes sure to hug Scott goodbye. It's almost like a way to ensure that he'll come back, so we can see him again.



Pre-Show, Atomix Coffee Shop


Atomix is just a few doors down from the store, and just off the Damen/Chicago intersection. It's been AGES since I've been down here, and it's still got the same sort of feel that I remember, from my first visit. I don't venture south of Augusta all that much, and I really should stretch out my perimeter a bit more.


I hung out for a bit with Ben, Allison and Justin - sipping on coffee and, of course, chatting about work.

We geeked out a bit, and bemoaned the status of Who's Next Online, a site we all helped to build about a year back that's since... sort of just existed, unmanaged and undirected. That's been underutilized, is probably a better descrition.

We also talked about our recent work with iTunes, and the approach other companies are taking to music - last.fm, Pandora, etc.

It's odd sometimes to me, that I talk as much about work as I do... outside of work. But I like it, I enjoy it. In some ways it seems like a bad thing, but today - it felt pretty darn good. All of my coworkers have a similar desire - to build and create things - and it's evident through our conversations.


After spotting this photobooth, Justin went over to check if anyone had slid any photos underneath the machine. Sadly... he found nothing.



Rotofugi: Customized Toy Exhibit


Exterior, Rotofugi.
Bryan, hanging out in front of the store. The entire time we were there, the inside was pretty packed. And on top of that, folks spilled out onto the sidewalk and pretty much took over a small area in front of the place.


Mural, interior.


Sweeeet.


On my way in, I snapped a few photos of the various items that are on sale normally.


As I understand it - a lot of the toys are physically the same, underneath - and the variations ensue as a result of a particular artist/designer who then paints/colors it.


Plushies!


Interior shot of the store/crowd.


The exhibit - set up along the back wall. In a few months, we found out that Bryan will be having his own show here - so this entire wall will be covered with all of his work.


Bryan's creation, which continues the Kamikaze theme he was exploring earlier.


Snapped a few other shots, to give you a sense of what was on display.


I'd love to see what this one looks like, with the hat on.


Boba Fett!


I quite like the colors on this one.



Found Magazine + PostSecret: Intuit Gallery

While at Rotofugi, we were joined by Ben's wife, Laura, and Justin's friend Chris. A bunch of us then headed over to Intuit Gallery to see a pretty fantastic double bill: Found Magazine and Frank Warren (who runs PostSecret)!

As many of you already know, I'm a huge fan of Found Magazine, and I've been taken with PostSecret ever since I learned about it. Seeing both together tonight was an awesome opportunity - and a ton of fun.

At Intuit, I met up with Liz (who was meeting me after her shift at C&B), as well as her roommate Lisa. When we arrived and peeked in to the room where the show-and-tell was to take place... it was packed. Solid.

I pushed my way near the front, and then was joined by Liz shortly afterwards. Then, as luck would have it, we spotted Lisa sitting on the floor, near the front. And so Liz and I wedged in next to her. Allison was able to get a seat on the floor off to the side... and after catching her eye, we were able to clear a spot next to us so she could sit closer.


To our immediate right.


And to the left. I told you this place was packed.


Found is currently on tour to promote their latest collection: Found II. Take a peek at their list of cities, and definitely catch them if you can.

And just so you can get a taste of what it'll be like, here are some clips from the event:



















For more Found videos, check out January 7, 2005.



Epilog

Great shows tonight, and I had fun hanging out with friends and coworkers. Justin said it best when he leaned over to me and said "I feel human again!" After the past few weeks of work and moves, tonight felt like a fun, relaxing, evening where no deadlines existed, and no box needed to be moved.

I was especially fond of the moments where I could hear Liz, Lisa and Allison laugh during the show. They weren't familiar with Found and PostSecret - so it was cool to be near them, as they discovered what both projects were about.

It was a lot like watching a favorite movie with someone who hadn't seen it before. That kind of good feeling.

I got a chance to shake Frank Warren's hand, later in the evening, which was cool. I told him how much I enjoyed his site, and thanked him for his work. I'm sure he's heard this a million times over, but it felt nice to say it.

One question I asked him was why so many people seem to be willing to confess or share their secrets. Was it the anonymity? The ability to "design" something? His response was that he felt it was a variety of things: he used his own, home address... and that gives some comfort that it's an actual person who will be receiving these secrets. He also mentioned the absence of advertisements on the page - something else he thought was important. And he also cited affiliations with nonprofit organizations, visible on the site.

I told him a bit about what I had in mind to do, and as silly and as brief as it was... when he said "Good luck with your project," he seemed very sincere, and it was a fantastic burst of motivation.



Note to self

Do what you need to do. Time gets away.