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Monthly Archives: January 2015

  • App Review: MomentCam

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    During a recent trip to Disneyland, I noticed a long line building up at a caricature kiosk. Have you ever wanted to see yourself as a caricature drawing but didn’t want to dish out the dough it takes to get a good one? After scouring the app store I stumbled upon one that can give you a personalized caricature image (and even a moving caricature graphic) and its completely (unlike any Disney product, ever) free!

    MomentCam, (the name needs a little work) offers its users a tailored caricature portrayal in both still and moving forms and can be saved right to your phone, tablet or even uploaded onto many social media platforms (including an “Other” option which allows those underground apps to take part in the fun). Choose from a range of face, hair, expressions and accessories along with an array of style amendments (black & white, ink, vintage, etc.) in addition to the traditional sketched cartoon you!

    MomentCam_20141106102458Emoticon "moving" image

    The app offers its users three categories to select from on its main page: Comics, Emoticons and your MomentCam Portfolio.

    Screenshot_2014-11-06-10-40-14MomentCam main page

    To start, users chose either the Comics (still images) or Emoticons (moving images) selection. You're then able to take a picture of yourself or find a pre-made caricature and then insert your face afterwards. I discovered that finding an image that you are keen of prior to taking your snapshot is more effective than trying to find an image based on your facial expression.

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    Comics section. Choose your still theme here.

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    Emoticons section. Choose your moving theme here.

    After developing a healthy collection of caricatures, you can view both your Comic and Emoticon selves in your Portfolio:

    Screenshot_2014-11-06-13-04-06Your portfolio consists of images saved from both categories

    Given the enormity of the caricatures in the Comics category, navigating your way to a desired image is difficult. Once you do find one however, you can unquestionably have some fun with this app. You first choose a theme, such as a broad one like Love, Professions or Sports. Or you could go the niche route and search for a sub-theme within gallaries like “Snow Goddess” or “Tang Dynasty”. We couldn’t make this up. After 5 full minutes of scrolling I literally couldn’t reach the end. Good news for some users who appreciate caricatures that revolve around “Autumn Leaves” or something called "Manga" (who the hell knows?). All these categories do is make the app more sluggish.

    Once you finally settle on an image, creativity ensues. Dictate your facial structure, hair type on both face and head, and any type of accessory like hats or glasses.

    Screenshot_2014-11-18-10-09-58"Face Edit" screen in Comics

    Screenshot_2014-11-18-10-15-23Editing screen in Emoticon section

    MomentCam_20141106_103621Pumpin' iron!

    Conversely, the good thing about the apps size is that no matter how odd the caricature you wish to insert yourself, rest assured that there is an image for it. One aggravation of mine: If you're bald, the app turns you into alien-head man.

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    To ensure a great fit, the app lets you customize the angle that your face is portrayed with a simple graphic:

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    The Emoticons category is a little different from the Comics section, but in a good way. The size is much more manageable and the categories are what most people would actually look for. Instead of thousands of themes, there are about 400. Good ones, too. Instead of hundreds of caricatures for “I Love Lucy”, we find approximately 40-50 listed under Angry or Happy for those wanting to find quick, standard moving images. For those wanting to get extreme with their caricature graphics, however, there are still categories of varying depth to light up your brain waves.

    Speaking of waves, I thought I might see how this caricature of me riding one would look printed on wood!

    MomentCam_20141106_100319Shreddin' the gnar, brah!

     After saving the image to my iPhone, then uploading it to Prints on Wood, it turned out not too bad!   I'm not sure if it could pass for a Christmas present to my Mom, but is definitely worthy of a nice "for no reason at all" gift she always cherishes.

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    All in all, MomentCam is an app meant for those wanting the most assorted and unusual image-rendering app out there. While satisfyingly diverse, it approaches the boundary of becoming too diverse because, other than the app freezing a few times during testing (restarting the process sucks!) it can become dizzying. Caricatures are meant to be simple and funny and I’d rather them just stay that way.  With all that in mind I give this app a rating of 3.

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    For more information on MomentCam please visit: http://www.momentcamofficial.com/

  • Aaron Paul - art collector

    Walking up to a signed HPM at Shepard Fairey's opening of "50 Shades of Black", price book in hand, I hear a familiar voice ask, "Where did you get that?"  Everything clicks the moment I look up, but I still expected him to belch out "Yo! B**CH!"

    I don't know much about Aaron Paul, other then we seem to share an affection for similar artists.  Last weekend he walked into another Prints on Wood featured artist solo gallery show called "The Younger" by Lola.

    Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 10.59.53 PMLola's solo show "The Younger" at 80Fourty gallery

    Aaron compared his new found love for Lola's work equal to that of Mark Ryden. His Instagram post went on to say "...she is now becoming one of my favorite artists to follow. Not only is the world she paints in beautiful and unbelievably poetic, like a childlike dream, she herself is incredibly sweet and kind. This piece is called "Book Soup" and I could stare at it for hours."

    Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 10.54.32 PMLola and Aaron Paul in front of "Book Soup"

    From what we heard, he hung out for a couple of hours just chatting and being... normal.  Why does it feel so oddly unique when a famous person acts like.. I don't know.. a regular person?  Probably because it is so unusual.  He did do something even more humbling and incredibly sincere, he bowed to Lola in a show of respect for her talent.  If I wasn't a huge fan before, I am with out a doubt one now!

    Screen Shot 2015-01-06 at 10.31.14 PM

    But we actually were huge fans before, caught up in the Breaking Bad obsession we fashioned our sustainability page with suttle references to the show.

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    What better way to brag about the 200 solar panels on our roof?

    If you find yourself as taken with the piece as Aaron is, Lola has released an edition of twenty signed and numbered limited edition fine art wood print of "Book Soup", 18x24, $300.

    IMG_6862Close up of "Book Soup" by Lola

    The show was a work two years in the making, beginning after Lola's move to Bristol, England.  Finally commencing after a long move back to LA earlier this year.  A celebration of patience and beauty each piece is a sight to behold.

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    Although the show is now closed, a few originals are still available.  For more information about available pieces or about Lola please visit: http://www.lolafineart.com/

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