"" bshawise: June 2009

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

BESTOV Mid-Summer 09: Television Program

The award for best summer television program goes to Guy Fieri and Triple D (diners, drive-ins and dives). I can't think of another show that makes me seriously consider driving to Portland, Oregon just to get biscuits. Always with the perfect one-liners, Guy takes a simple idea (touring the nation's greasy spoons) and makes it extremely entertaining. America may get a lot of things wrong, but the creation of diners is most definitely something we can be proud of. I'm hungry just thinking about them.

Here's a clip from one of last year's shows.

Monday, June 29, 2009

BESTOV Mid-Summer 09: Nutrition Bars

The award for best nutrition bars goes to Luna. These LadyBars have changed my life. They claim to be created by and for women. That's sexist. These bars are more than delicious and as a man, I am offended that they won't let me eat them. I'll say it loud and proud, I love these lady luna bars. I've been eating them for for seven weeks now and I haven't grown mammaries. So men, eat these. Eat em up and don't let these sexist, willy wonkas of nutrition bars keep you from joining the protein party. I'm about to burn my jockstrap in protest.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

BESTOV Mid-Summer 09: Ad Campaign

I feel the need for a mid-summer BESTOV award show. I pick the categories, nominees and winners. The academy and I work hard deciding who to honor and believe me, it's a HUGE honor. So with that said.... the award for Best Ad Campaign goes to Dos Equis' Most Interesting Man in the World. Clearly influenced by the Bill Brasky, Chuck Norris facts phenomenon yet it somehow feels fresh. The best part is that he says he doesn't always drink beer but when he does.... That honest subtlety makes the whole thing work. They have a whole web component that is pretty fun as well. http://staythirstymyfriends.com Cheers, Dos Equis. Well done. Your blue ribbon is in the mail.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Oooh Mau Mau

Friday, June 26, 2009


Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Just a good reminder.

Monday, June 22, 2009

MP3 experiment

This is so fascinating.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Air Vocals

True story. This is major inspiration for vcc's (potential) 2009 Christmas show.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Homeless Love Birds

Our gutters get cleaned today. This makes me a little sad, actually. There's a a young bird couple starting a family in them. I've been watching them from my deck. One flies out finds a twig or piece of plastic, swoops back up, and the love birds decide what to do with it. I'm guessing they have bird babies on the way? Is that when bird grown-ups build homes? Either way, it's been fascinating to watch.

I appreciate that the birds use what's around them. Sure they'd rather have a cashmere-lined, polycarbon, two-story loft overlooking a worm farm. But they have my gutter and the random pieces of stuff scattered about my yard. To be fair, I guess we have a pretty nice bird bath that they're within swooping distance of. It's been fun, dare I say inspiring watching their shopping trips for quasi-suitable, building materials.

I dare say inspiring because the birds made me ask the question, "what or whom do I have around me, right now, that I could be building something with? " Are there trends or patterns that I could be noticing that point to something specific? I had this vendor show up to work yesterday and offer to design our events for us. I told him that we kind of exist to get volunteers involved in the game. I told him if we have a volunteer who shows up with painting/illustrating/kickboxing skills we'll do something with that. After I said that I wondered how true it was. Do I craft things based on what's naturally around me or do I craft things first and then go looking? Is one better than the other?

Anyways, those poor birds will be evicted by this afternoon. I have a hunch they'll be alright. Unless those babies are coming tomorrow. Then they might be screwed. Somebody call Oprah.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Contagious Uniqueness

If you build something unique that welcomes collaboration- they will come.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Nostalgia Bomb

There are kids everywhere. All of a sudden, from sun up to sun down, they're outside with their baseball bats, tennis rackets and stolen pocket knives making up games and celebrating their freedom. I was bombarded with nostalgia as Leah and I walked Miss Jackson tonight. Remember how magical summer break was back then? Man oh man. It's almost too much to think about. Like super rich cheesecake for the brain.

So we get home, I take the trash out, shower, pour a glass of wine and sit down to read Malcom Gladwell's "Outliers." But I can't stop thinking about those kids. I also can't stop thinking about this part of the book where Gladwell says there are the three factors to meaningful work.
1. Autonomy
2. Complexity
3. Relationship between effort and reward.

I wondered if this can be applied to more than just "work." Is there a relationship between these three factors and the greatness of childhood summer breaks? And if so, is there something to glean?

I grew up on the mean streets of Tecumseh Trail. We lived in the suburbs of Tiffin, Ohio. Our little block was surrounded by farm fields and woods. As kids, we spent a good portion of every day in these fields and woods. We were daytime pioneers, building forts and starting fires. We'd come home for lunch and a quick swim or game of street hockey. But then we'd head back out, Bear Grylls style and attempt to survive Seneca County wilderness.

We were pretty much in charge of our entire day. Autonomy.

Some days we figured out ways to sneak, steal, buy lighters and matches to start fires. Other days we drew up master plans for underground tunnels and hidden hideouts (that were never built) that those Robinsons from Swissland would be jealous of. Complexity.

We left sweat, blood and spit (Big League Chew) in the woods and came home to food and chlorinated-refreshment. We saw daily progress on our forts and if we didn't, we started new ones. There was a tangible relationship between effort and reward.

I wonder if kids naturally migrate toward activities that encompass Gladwell's three factors. Back in the day, with a summer of complete freedom, did we find ourselves spending the day doing things that were autonomous, complex and had a pay-off for our efforts? Things that we look back on and remember as the good ole' days. And the question you saw coming, do we spend our days doing meaningful things now as adults? If not, I wonder why. Those were good times back then. It seems crazy that they just have to stop because we're in the "real" world now. Why can't we earn a living doing meaningful things? That doesn't have to mean curing rabies or whatever. Gladwell's three factors can be found in anything. The question I'm posing is, are they (autonomy, complexity, pay-off) found in our days/lives right now like they were perhaps back when were kids?

I all of a sudden feel like a bomb pop. Remember bomb pops? Man oh man.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Initial Art

This week, Joe asked me to do some initial art for the feature film we hope/plan to shoot in the spring of 2010. He had a meeting with a potential investor. Creating art for a film is hard to do when all you have is a screenplay. I asked my new friend Lay to do a line drawing for me. Joe and I banged out a synopsis together. Which, I found is also surprisingly difficult to do. And here we are. This little graphic doesn't capture the comedic vibe of the story completely/perfectly, but for now, it does the trick. It takes what mostly feels like a distant, hard-to-imagine-us-ever-really-completing dream and makes a little more real. And that's kind of exciting.

I'm guessing you'll have to click the image to read the text.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Bear Sighting North of Cincinnati

Dear Residents of Waynesboro,

Nice knowing you.

Where's the street-wise Hercules?

Sunday, June 7, 2009


Last summer, I discovered a this guy's blog. He called his lil' site a tumblelog. I didn't know what that meant and didn't think a whole lot about it. This past spring, however, I started stumbling upon other tumblelogs. I did a little research and a whole new world has opened. Am I late to the tumblr game here?

Tumblr.com is a micro-blogging site. People post and re-post pics, clips, quotes and anything else that catches their eye. It is a never-ending, pixel flea market. I am humbled by the amount of art out in cyberland every time I start cruising around different tumblelogs. I take this luxury for granted most days. Other days, when I've had just the right amount of coffee and pay attention to the lil' birdies in my backyard, I really appreciate the accessibility of inspiration.

Do you tumblelog? Do you have tumblr sites you go to on a regular basis? If so, please share. They're like crack (the healthy kind that grows your brain) and I need/want more. Here's a few I've been checking out lately.

i am blessed

art pixie

shades of grey

Friday, June 5, 2009

The Goose Is Loose

Last night, I was talking with friends/fellow creatives about the future. Not like hover-boards and the return of crystal pepsi. More like the big questions of future dreams/goals/purposes. You know, the stuff that torments us all. At any moment, if we want to, we can consider ourselves at a crossroads where we go left towards dreams, right towards making actual money, straight towards "I still have no idea where I'm going." My friends were asking my thoughts on their crossroads dilemma. They own a business. They need/want to make money. They also want/need to do work that brings them real satisfaction. Right now, those two things feel like different destinations. They feel they're at a crossroad where they either choose to make money and feed their family or they take a risk and chase a wild goose.

I'm only 30 years old. I'm aware I don't know a lot. Or anything, really. But I told my friends that I thought if they do whatever work is currently in front of them, and do it really really well, they'll eventually find their goose. It's happened to me. I knew a long time ago I didn't just want to graphic design. But I had a design job, so I did good work. That led me here where I'm doing more than just graphic design. I think that old parable rings pretty true.

The crazy thing I'm starting to find as I enter old age, is that even when you catch a goose it has the sneaky ability to get away and turn into something different. And usually, something even more fun to chase. So we can stand at the proverbial crossroads and think/talk/dream all we want. But it's unlikely we'll catch any wild goooooooses that way. Take a step in any direction, do good work, enjoy the chase. Oh, and eat your vitamins.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Get On Yo Feet

Simple solutions for a crazy, mixed-up world

This made me wonder how often I over-complicate problem solving. I know it's a just a pretty picture. But I thought about some dude who was all, "I hate rain. Hate how it gets on me. How it comes from the sky. I hate it everywhere but especially in my alley way. I bet if I just make these little circular tent structures and hang them above me.....YES! That's it!"

The key, I think, is to constantly question your solutions. Is there a better/simpler way of doing X? In my line of work, I usually start out solving problems in a pretty complicated manner. Not on purpose. It just takes a few mistakes before I realize or know how to do things in a better/simpler way.

That's gotta be how these world-changers got to this solution...

Monday, June 1, 2009


Awhile back Leah read a D.Ramsey book. She decided we needed to get a little more focused with our finances. So, we started the cash system. It only took a few times of getting in trouble for forgetting that the debit card was off limits for me to get it. That led to us paying off a few debts, refinancing our home and things are starting to look pretty good.

Two weeks ago we started a workout program called P90X. It's intense (dare I say Xtreme). For over 14 days straight nearly every muscle in our bodies have been sore. But it's kind of great. We commiserate together, we encourage each other, we even do the 90 minute yoga workout together. The first week we got sushi after the yoga. How freaking yuppy is that? Yikes. It's only been a couple weeks but we're both really enjoying the challenge.

Last week we both started to wonder why we're able to spend at least an hour day, six days a week focusing on our physical health but we don't spend anywhere near that on our spiritual health. So this week, we're going to see what's out there to help us focus in on that side of things.

I say all this because I think taking on challenges with someone starts a bit of a chain reaction. We got our financial life in gear and that felt good, so somewhat unknowingly we looked for more. We're starting to get our physical life in gear which immediately caused us to look for more. Who knows what'll happen if we get our spiritual life more focused and disciplined. We may start levitating and curing cancer.

I challenge you to find a buddy/friend/lover/small group/extraordinary dog and take on a challenge together. I'm guessing the same kind of chain reaction could happen. That initial challenge will birth others and by the end of the summer, we could all be curing cancer together David Blaine style. That would be Xtreme.