Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Cameratruck: Shaun Irving and The World's Largest Traveling Camera

With an old mail truck purchased via eBay and lenses from old military surplus and a submarine periscope Shaun Irving travels around taking large-format photos that are not just stylish and intriguing but also 3,000(!) times bigger than the typical 35mm negative. As a matter of fact, The Cameratruck is not just a fascinating art and reuse project but also the world’s largest traveling camera.

Here are a few additional facts about The Cameratruck and its operator:
  • Aperture is set with a piece of scrap paper
  • Shutter is made of a cardboard box (!)
  • Developing rig consists of two buckets, a sponge and a garden hose (and developer, of course).
  • Other than the basic setup the process of an average Cameratruck shot also includes test prints before final exposure and takes about half an hour.
  • To take a photo, Irving stands inside the truck "fumbling around in the dark."

A series of 75 mega-photographs was taken from the Cameratruck in 2007 when Irving spent 5 weeks touring about 5,000 miles across Spain, visiting "every province" and taking photos of "presidential palaces and the most abandoned of villages."

"My work is primitive, through my choice and because of the limits of the camera. I've been shooting this way for many years, but I still can't even describe it. It's sharply focused... yet blurred beyond comprehension. It's mass-produced... yet hand-crafted and individual. It's cold and stark... yet packs an emotional punch. I wish I could take credit for my work. But the fact is nature, and even the truck itself, play a more important role than I do."

Above: A photo by Irving titled Tagged Bull Santa Pola Valencia, Spain. Below: more samples from the Spanish series.

Skull (Puente Ra) Sierra de Cebollera La Rioja, Spain

Mine at Tharsis Tharsis, Alosno, Spain

Doñana Parque Nacional de Doñana, Huelva y Sevilla, Spain

Full-sized prints of selected works from the Spain tour are available for purchasing as limited-editions: Each edition is limited to five prints, full-sized and hand-developed by Irving on silver gelatin photographic paper. Image sizes averages about 7 feet wide by 3.5 feet tall. Irving also offers the original negatives for sale as one-of-a-kind works of art.

For more about the tour in Spain and further explanations by Irving about the art and science behind Cameratruck watch the above video titled Landscapes in a Truck. For more images of higher resolution and more about Irving and The Cameratruck visit

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Yoga Class for Babies in The UK

As you probably know Yoga is a lot about breathing. Actually, one of the five basic principles of Yoga is a special breathing exercise named Pranayama designed to promote proper breathing. Anyways, greetings to the avid CultCase reader who asked to remain anonymous but sent us the intriguing snapshot shown above, taken during her baby's Yoga class in The UK. You must have noticed yourself how the guy on the right has an obviously great future with the art of Pranayama. The best thing about that snapshot, however, is that the seven samurai are lined up according to their birth order, left to right.

Friday, February 6, 2009

7 Strikingly Unconventional and Far-fetched Gifts for Valentine's Day 2009

Everyone wants to be loved. Perhaps that's one of the reasons why we had to come up with the idea of a special day in which we "show" how much we love someone by giving him or her a present. The need to give and receive Valentine's Day presents - preferably surprisingly original ones - is amazingly strong. Last year, for example, eight million Americans admitted they have sent themselves their own Valentine's Day gifts. So, be it yourself or someone else, here are 7 creative though unconventional Valentine's Day gifts for the one you love: from the most artistic to the sexiest.

Artistic: Light Art Prints

If you are a regular reader on CultCase you may have already met Ryan Warnberg and Michelle McSwain from M::R::I. ("Long exposures. Bright lights."). The regular stuff from the M::R::I couple usually includes fabulous kaleidoscopic slightly sexy portraits but for this year's Valentine's Day they came up with 3 special digital metallic prints. Size: 8x10 Inches.
Morbid: BitterSweets

If you feel Valentine's Days tends to get your morbid sides loose you may want to place an order with the folks from BitterSweets who have taken the "honest approach" quite far with their view of the holiday:
"For most, there is no crueler day of the calendar year than that of Valentine's Day. While a tiny fraction of the population can look forward to a holiday of wine and roses, poetry and song, the vast majority of us can anticipate a day of nausea and grimacing, trauma and grief. A day in which minutes seem like hours, and hours like days, as we reflect sorrowfully on yesteryear's romantic indignities, today's loneliness, and the unknowable but certain heartbreak that will be visited upon us repeatedly in the years to come."

The sweets you see here are available in three unique collections, namely; "Dejected" with sayings such as I MISS MY EX, PEAKED AT 17 and SETTLE 4LESS; "Dysfunctional" with sayings such as P.S. I LUV ME, I DO MY DISHES and AWFUL INLAWS and; "Dumped" with sayings including HE FIT U FAT, BACK 2 KENNEL and SHE IS 22!. For those of you who tend to over thinking things over, notice that "supplies are limited. But the pain that accompanies them may not be". BTW, the sweets are made in "a facility that processes nuts and peanuts". We we've certainly noticed about the nuts.
Animalistic: Heart Shaped Box of Chocolates Plush Dog Toy

If showing your dog how much you care sounds like a good idea for this coming Valentine's Day perhaps this 5"x5", polyester and cotton set, promised to "bring the sweet side out of any hound". Heart Shaped Box of Chocolates Plush Dog Toy includes three sumptuous and soft "truffles" nestled on top of the heart-shaped toy.
Limitless: I Love You From Top to Bottom Romantic toilet paper

Well, we can think of a few better expression of our kind of love but guessing for some this can be considered as a way to say I REALLY Love You. $14.95 (per roll) and you are on your way to heaven. Jeff Block of reports 50 rolls are already sold before the Valentine's Day rush even started and plans to sell 200 to 300 rolls before this Valentine's Day. Good luck Jeff!
Nasty: Voodoo Doll Candle

For those of us with unresolved issues with the ex this Voodoo doll candle may help. Designed to "relish every moment as you light the wicks and wish them the very worst" this perfect Valentine gift for the recently dumped may indeed be a damn good therapy.
Authoritative: The Control Your Spouse Set

Why waste precious time and energy trying to control the thoughts and actions of your significant other when you can automate the process? Just push a button and let our talking remote controller do it for you. The remotes deliver a riot of verbal one-offs and funny sound effects sure to keep your spouse on the right track. Features 18 saying including (men control) "Time to listen!", "What about my needs?", "What were you thinking?" (Women control) "Zip it!", "Clean up on aisle four!" and "All right, hand over the credit cards!". Get both for only $34.95.
Sexy: Edible Candy G-String

Indeed a true Valentine's night delight, the Candy G String is made of approximately 330 fruit-flavored candy pieces, and has just 60 calories so don't worry about it affecting the diet. We particularly liked the note to the women: "He treats for dinner, you treat for dessert. Show off your body and your equality."
For more ideas for Valentine's Day gifts try here

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Spectacular Holy Land Rainbow

Unfortunately, nothing about the upcoming elections in Israel can be looked at as a light of hope, that is if peace is what you are hoping for. Therefore we are guessing the spectacular rainbow that showed up outside the main CultCase headquarters at Kfar Netter about three hours ago must be related to the newly announced president of The United States of America. We just can't see any other reason why we got so lucky to have it.

For those of you who know but would like to refresh their memory according to Wikipedia a rainbow is:
"An optical and meteorological phenomenon that causes a spectrum of light to appear in the sky when the Sun shines onto droplets of moisture in the Earth's atmosphere. They take the form of a multicolored arc, with red on the outer part of the arch and violet on the inner section of the arch."

Technically the colors of the rainbow are absolutely not as distinct as we see them but instead span a continuous spectrum. Traditionally, however, and as is illustrated in the below detail, the sequence can be "quantized" as red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. Sometimes (not in this case) rainbows are caused by non-rain water such as mist, spray, and dew.

Pictures: CultCase (Nikon CoolPix 8800)