Mateusz Urbanowicz "Tokyo Storefront" series

Mateusz Urbanowicz: “Tokyo Storefront” series

When I moved to Tokyo, more than 3 years ago I was really surprised that upon my walks I encountered so many shops still in business in really old buildings. Differently to Kobe, where the earthquake wiped out a lot of these old downtown houses and shops, in Tokyo they still survive.

Mateusz Urbanowicz "Tokyo Storefront" series

Spoon & Tamago: Mateusz Urbanowicz, also known as Matto, is a Polish artist and illustrator currently based in Tokyo. One of his latest projects is the Tokyo Storefront series.

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Craft and creativity

Matto’s incredible watercolour paintings of Tokyo storefronts

Born and raised in Silesia, Poland, Mateusz Urbanowicz studied electronic engineering until he found out that making art can be more than a weird hobby…

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The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights by Zen Pencils, a website where inspirational quotes from famous people are adapted into cartoons by Gavin Aung Than.

another beautiful story: In our latest episode, we speak to Melbourne based cartoonist Gavin Aung Than of Zen Pencils. “A lot of people think I’m just living an exciting life, thinking of ideas and drawing, but being a cartoonist is a lot of hard work”. And while it may be hard work for Gavin to continually push out good quality comics, the cartoonist reveals in this video why his readers feedback, has in-turn made him find his calling.

Progression and regression

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

“I quit my job without any grand plan, it was a big risk and one of the scariest things I have ever done.” – Gavin Aung Than

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International Color Symbolism Chart

A guide to what different colours symbolize in different countries; a useful consideration for designers. [PDF]

For example, the color red has many different meanings in other countries. In the United States red signifies danger and is often interpreted as a signal to stop, yet it also symbolizes love and passion. However, in China red speaks of good fortune, celebration and happiness. On the financial front, red denotes a rise in stock prices in East Asian stock markets while it reflects a drop in stock prices in North American stock markets. In many ways these attitudes toward color are completely opposite in these different cultures.

Purple is another example. There are vast differences in how some countries perceive this color. Japan looks at purple as wealth. France sees it as freedom or peace. The U.K., China and the United States understand purple as royalty. India, however, identifies this color with sorrow and unhappiness.

Six Degrees: An International Guide to the Use of Color in Marketing and Advertising (via Rands in Repose)

See also: Mummy Brown and other historical colours

Humans and other animals

International colour symbolism

“Though this chart may not reflect the totality of color representations, it serves as an introduction to expand your knowledge of color meanings.” — Six Degrees

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An incredible-looking game from Studio Koba, coming to Kickstarter soon!

Narita Boy

You are Narita Boy, a legendary digital hero in an epic quest through simultaneous dimensions. The digital kingdom is under attack and you are called as their last hope of survival. Explore a vast world to find the techno sword, the only effective weapon against the threat.

The aesthetic of the game is inspired by retro pixel adventures (Castlevania, Another World, Double Dragon) with a modern touch (Superbrothers, Sword and Sorcery) and an 80s plot homage (Ready Player One, He-Man, The Last Starfighter), accompanied by the retro synth touch of the old glory days.

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Pixar in a Box — Introduction to storytelling

TechCrunch: Pixar’s previous Khan Academy courses include topics like virtual cameras, effects and animations, but this is the first to focus on the less technical aspects of movie creation.

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Tale Foundry: 5 Weirdest Genres of Fiction

A look at Steampunk, Fantastique, Slipstream, Bizarro, and Weird fiction.


Tale Foundry is a YouTube explainer show “about made up stuff for people who like to make stuff up”. Although it is currently a small channel with ‘only’ ~6,000 subscribers, it is one of the better produced that serves this niche.

It’s also a really nicely structured channel, picking a fresh topic to explore each month, then starting with a general introduction of sorts (The Storytelling of Dark Souls), following up with a list episode (The Elements of Dark Souls Lore) and concluding with an original work of fiction inspired by the topic (“Faith in the Misbegotten”).

Other monthly topics so far have included Harry Potter, Creepypasta, Celtic folklore, Pokémon and Game of Thrones.

WEB Du Bois

WEB Du Bois: retracing his attempt to challenge racism with data

The Guardian: The civil rights pioneer and scholar is most famous for his book The Souls of Black Folk, but his use of data to show inequality is still profound today

Mona Chalabi has updated WEB Du Bois’ visualizations with recent data, while staying faithful to the design of the original illustrations.

I thought about DuBois while drawing these. Not just his outstanding craft (how did he manage to get those lines so straight? Those labels so neat?) but how he would feel to look at data 117 years later about the “present condition” of black Americans.

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Progression and regression

WEB Du Bois: Using data to show inequality, updated

The civil rights pioneer and scholar is most famous for his book The Souls of Black Folk, but his use of data to show inequality is still profound today.

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