20 September, 2012

The Beauty of Dance and Film

a brief crack of light from a brief crack of light on Vimeo.

Black Journey

I've been busy but treasures like these keep me running...

19 August, 2012

Revenge is a dish best served pink

When I was working at the studio a few weeks ago I noticed from the corner of my eye that someone was changing his facebook page in a rapid tempo. When I looked closer I realised I was witnessing a live frape.
A frape, for those who don’t know the term, is altering someone’s facebook page as a joke. My friends do it to each other when someone forgot to log out and we make a sport of changing their status update into something embarrassing they could have actually said. The frape is successful when people believe it and from that point the person who has been fraped is not allowed to change or delete it. So are the rules.
But this was no ordinary frape. This was a massacre! Photo’s, hobby’s, everything was changed, tagged, and it kept going on and on. I decided to text the guy to let him now he’s being royally fraped and he might want to change it back quick. We quickly found out who it was; his little brother.

A few weeks later the frape victim Tobias Mathijsen let us know he was thinking about a master plan to get back to his little brother. His little brother was away on holiday and he wanted to change his room into a pink little girls room. He made it into a facebook event and soon they gathered enough stuff and help from friends to make it successful. I donated a few things as well and wrote a diary full of embarrassing girl stuff to put under his pillow.
The eight of us went to work in the morning. Quickly moving all his stuff into a different room. We were kinda hoping to find something embarrassing like porn, after all it’s a boys room, but we only found a strange note, nothing more. Then we quickly started painting the walls. Tobias had bought quick drying paint and the warm weather helped to speed the drying process. A few people fixed his desk and painted it purple with flowers. Then we took a break to let the paint dry and quickly moved on to change the carpet. It was a left over piece from a store so that was pretty cheap too. After that it was just a matter of putting his bed and desk back, decorate it with all the donated stuff and before dinner we were done! We were all surprised it went so smoothly and fast.
Tobias filmed the whole process so we all would have a nice video to show our family and friends, and after all he’s a film maker and has all the equipment so why not document it? It was such a fun day! Every now and then someone would burst into laughter, realising what we were doing. I had a huge grin on my face the entire time. We were all enjoying it so much we want to prank each other the entire time now.
In the end it took us about 8 hours to get the job done. The cost of the prank was under €200.

The result :) 

After that day it was difficult not to post anything online since his little brother could find out. I told a few friends and their reactions were mixed, but mostly positive. I couldn’t wait to see his reaction on video. His little brother got back Tuesday night, the video was online Wednesday. And then it went fast…

It went viral. The views were increasing, the comments were piling up. Thursday we were excited that someone would show it to a contact from a local newspaper, that same night people from America were talking about it. And it hasn’t stopped since. Tobias is contacted by television, radio and random people. People are even talking about me, recognising me and I’m only a nano second in the film. We all had not expected this, we were shocked. Yesterday we celebrated the million views together and talked about how weird this is. People are ripping the video and upload it under their name to lift along with the success and views. Whole discussions about which language we are talking, the dildo and condom (which is actually a vibrator), how it’s a fake video, and who’s gay or not. These are the funniest comments I have found:

-Yeah right….there’s a professional camera team present…. FAKE! (Truth is Tobias is the only one holding a camera, all the other camera’s are hidden and switched on beforehand haha)

-Hoeveel (indirecte) overheids-subsidie heeft deze meuk gekost?

- Annoying hipster people!

-Wat een stel linkse hobbyisten

- he has no windows in his room...FAKE!

-Whenever I hear Dutch I think they're speaking English... while being strangled.

People are commenting I’m “hawt” and look like Zooey Deschanel which is quite funny and nice, thank you.

This is a Dutch interview a week after the prank

In short, these last days have been like a roller coaster, but in the end everyone will forget about it in a few days. Which is ok. However I do secretly hope someone will auto tune parts of the video or make their own version. I would love to see more pranks like this. Pranks with no physical pain involved, just a twisted mind and an eye for detail ;) 

Summer Photos

Long time no update. Here's a quick photo recap of what I've been up to.

New painting. Acryl on cardboard 80 x 50 cm.

Super productive lately! There are quite a few Comic Fairs I'm attending so I had to update my work. I have a whole new series of old photos with tentacles.

I've finished my first comic ever :3 It's an eight page story called Ex Ovo Omnia.
There are new items available at my web shop! I'm proud to have these beautiful 3D printed jewelry from  The Rogue And The Wolf. Take a quick peek!

I'm a proud owner of this Singer sewing machine! So far I've discovered it's from 1935, but can't seem to find more about it's history. It seems to work though, only needs a big cleaning.
Work at a cupcake shop is fun! Especially when I made this cupcake jake! CUPCAKE TIIIIIME!!!!

I love to face paint kids at parties, however they seem to like it the other way around. They gave me cool glittery tattoos of a turtle and flowers. 

Went to Budapest for 10 days with my friend Cindy. Stayed at the Backpackers Guesthouse which is definitely THE BEST hostel in Budapest. Met lovely people and partied hard as you can see :)

Preparing for the zombie war...

01 June, 2012

All work and no play makes jack a dull boy

So I've been extremely busy lately with all sorts of things. Let me get you up to date...

KOM Festival
The KOM festival is an art festival at my hometown Oosterhout. The festival is relatively young, this is its third time and they’ve decided to do things completely different. I’ve been asked to act as a festival coordinator together with Sharon Joosen. That basically means we need to make sure the festival is fun, there’s enough different things to do and make sure there is a festival in the first place. A lot of responsibility but fun to do. So write it down; it’s the 7th till the 10th of October.

Utrecht Comic Art Fair

Comic Art Fair Tour 2012
I’m touring with Dead Ant around the Netherlands this summer to sell our stuff and be awesome. We’ve been to the Utrecht Comic Art Fair in March. It was a lot of fun, many familiar faces and it was held at a church so the setting was amazing.
Next up was Mercado de Belcrum. This was held at the city where I’ve studied so once again many familiar faces and new friends. This fair is more about homemade stuff but visitors didn’t seem to mind my strange darlings and creations.
There’s the Comic Weekend in Haarlem this weekend, which is one of the biggest comic art fairs in Holland. I’m excited to go however I’ve been so busy these last couple of weeks I haven’t been able to create new stuff and replenish my stock. We’ll see how it goes :) I’ll bring my stuff so I can draw on the spot! The next event where Dead Ant will be is at the Bazar Bizar. This fair is more homemade stuff related instead of indie art. It’s held in Rotterdam. For all dates and events you can also check here.

I have an awesome animation job to work on. It’s a promotion video for a new concept of evening parties with your girlfriends (you all know the famous Tupperware, make up parties). I don’t want to spoil the surprise, there’s a press release coming in July. But to animate again is a great feeling! 

Decorated window by Dead Ant at Brand Mission
Dead Ant
I find it hard sometimes to manage my time. And when I see all this stuff summed up I’m working on I wonder how I manage to get some sleep at all. It looks like things are quiet at Dead Ant but on the contrary. I’m working very hard behind the scenes.
My eye caught this amazing jewelry label from England. By the awesome name ‘The Rogue and The Wolf’ it sells 3D printed rings and necklaces of animals and skulls. It has a certain dark fairytale feeling and I fell in love with it immediately. I’m now proud to announce that their items are now for sale at Dead Ant.nl starting at the Comic weekend in Haarlem. That’s right, the modern dandies amongst you can be the first to get their hands on a kick ass ‘The Rogue and The Wolf’ necklace or ring!
Dead Ant also got the opportunity to decorate a store window as part of the Comic weekend in Haarlem. And not some random store, no, I’ve got the chance to show my work at Brand Mission. A beautiful store full with young designer products. If you visit you’ll end up with the need to own everything you see. From designer fashion to upside down plant pots everything is cool. Check out their website, or even better, check out my decorated shop window in real life!
So keep checking Dead Ant.nl or our facebook. There are a couple more things I’m working on and I’ve got a few surprises in store. Stay tuned….

New wooden friends

All work and no play makes jack a dull boy
I’ve managed to squeeze in a few relaxing moments as well. We went mountain boarding for a weekend in Ardennes. That was more hard work than relaxing though. Of course there was also Queensday in Holland and this year it was magical! It showed that Dutch people can be friendly and welcome. Then there was the skate parade. It’s an event where you just put on your skates, get together and follow a route. There’s a big truck with loud music to keep the spirit going haha. I’m hooked and since it’s every Friday I’m trying to go as often as I can. Last but not least I went to a music festival Pinkpop. Great weather, better music and heaps of fun!

Pinkpop 2012

Shout outs
- There’s a Film borrel in Utrecht for professional film related people. It’s at 20:00, the 14th of June at LHC. This is the second edition. I’ve been to the first and this was finally a network opportunity where people don’t already know each other haha.
- The 5th of June there is a QultQuiz. A pubquiz about all culture, art and cult related. It sounds like a lot of fun. 20:00 at Oudegracht 105.
- 15th of June I’ll be performing together with my dance group at RASA. Don’t know if it’s invite only or you can buy tickets. 

20 April, 2012

Taxidermy Talk

Photo made by Shody Careman, filters by me. 

A Dutch newspaper ‘het Algemeen Dagblad’ wanted to write a little article about my collection of taxidermy a couple of weeks ago. I never got around to put it online, but here it is. I’m not going to translate it line for line, I’ll just try to explain why I like taxidermy so much.

When I grew up at the age of 7 I liked to climb trees, build forts, and explore my surroundings like every little kid. All available nature at that time however were little patches of yellow grass alongside  the road,  and trees next to a dirty pond. That didn’t stop me however. Sometimes,  when I was lucky, the occasional road kill would cross my path. Most of the times it was a duck and one lucky time a big grey heron. Finally I could see them up close and study their wings, beak, feet, everything really and I poked the animal with sticks. The next following days I tried to visit the slowly decaying animal until it was gone. Call it healthy curiosity.
All the animals I grew up with made up for the lack of nature though. My grandparents have a long history of fish- and pet- shops and when I was 4 years old I occasionally stayed over at friends whom had a pig farm. So from a young age I’ve learned to respect animals. Coming across sick and dead animals is not something unusual to me. I remember one funny story when I got to chose what I wanted to have for dinner and I remembered their chicken soup was delicious so immediately chose that! They brought me to their chicken coop, and I was still unaware what was going to happen, they let me choose one chicken. The farmer catches the chicken, grabs a small axe and chops the chicken’s head off in front of me. I must have been 5 years old but I remember thinking “oh is that how it’s made? Ahhh well it’s REALLY good chicken soup!”. So it didn’t bother me that much. I gave my dead gecko to my biology teacher to put it in formaldehyde.

Algemeen Dagblad, 31 Maart 2012. Photo got cropped for unknown reasons.

But don’t get me wrong; I don’t agree how the food industry treats most of their animals. I don’t agree with hunting for fun. I also don’t agree with hunting for taxidermy. I do agree using every part of an animal that got killed. And that it is ok to kill animals for food or when they are in unbearable pain and there’s no way the animal would get back to normal health. It’s weird how distant we have grown from animals. I know people who can’t even cut meat into pieces because they don’t like the feel of it but at the same time they’ll eat meat every day. And when their meat resembles the animal it once was they even refuge to eat it.

With taxidermy people think it’s weird or sad for the animal. If the animal is found dead, or killed due to health reasons I don’t see a problem reusing it for taxidermy. Like recycling the animal and use it for decoration or educational purposes. Just think about it; when a polar bear from a zoo dies of old age, what a waste of the animal it would be if they would just throw it away! Instead they could turn it into a beautiful piece of taxidermy and use it to educate visitors about polar bears. The magic of taxidermy is for me that you’re able to finally see and feel an animal up close you otherwise would never encounter. Who wouldn’t want to cuddle with a bear or feel a wolf’s paw!

Soon I'll be staring with mounting little insects and butterflies and I'm thinking about following a workshop how to clean and mount bird skeletons.

To finish this post I’ll share one of my favorite websites and taxidermist Sarina Brewer and this crappy taxidermy blog.

14 April, 2012

Dead Ant is Born!

Can't believe I haven't posted this here yet! Last couple of weeks have been crazy and I feel super tired but satisfied :) 

So I've finally opened my web shop! I've been working on this plan for almost a year now. Dead Ant is the name of the store. Why Dead Ant? The name covers all what it's about; ants are tough little insects. They work together just like I want to do with young creators and my website. The products I'm selling are bizarre, weird, curious and sometimes even have a sense of humor. You'll find customized antiques, t-shirts, prints, jewelry and much more. Go check it out!

I'm always looking for new young talent. So do you create things and think it will be a perfect fit for Dead Ant? Don't hesitate to contact: info [at] deadant [dot] nl. There's more info on the website.

We're still growing every day. We've already visited the Comic Art Fair, had a mention in the Dutch Newspaper and a Dutch blog. And the next few weeks look promising too. I have a few plans up my sleeve that are very exciting. We'll also be at an Art Fair in Breda tomorrow. So if you have nothing to do, stop by and say hi! Admission is free for pete's sake!

I'll be back soon with updates about the HAFF, the Comic Art Fair and much more news! After some well earned sleep that is...