Top 5 Picks for the Week, January 20, 2012

Electro Swing, Photo Burritos, Martian Images, Fashion Forward, and 3D CG

1. Parov Stelar Band

Photo Credit: ParovStelar.com

Parov Stelar Band is an innovative group from Europe.  Their sound is a unique combination of traditional instruments; including the trumpet, saxophone, and drums, along with modern DJ mixing and hard-hitting bass.  The style draws from the 1930s and 40s swing era and is energizing, great for background music at a party or working out.

You may recognize their song, Booty Swing, which has been recently featured on a commercial for The Cosmopolitan Hotel of Las Vegas.  This is part of The Paris Swing Box album available through Daily Records.  The single, Booty Swing, can also be purchased individually in MP3 format or with the compilation album, The Electro Swing Revolution, Volume 2 through Amazon. For a complete list of their works and several videos, visit the Parov Stelar Band’s website.

2. Photojojo!

Photo Credit: Photojojo.com

Photojojo is a great site to help with all your photography needs, even the obscure ones, like cookie cutters, bracelets, and my favorite, the Photorito Lens Wrap.  They also offer smart solutions for holding lens caps and a wonderfully simple item used to re-orient your strap, making it much easier to carry and not damage your camera. (Just what I’ve always needed, why didn’t I think of that?)  Photojojo is a great site to bookmark, especially if you have a photography enthusiast in your midst.  This can be a handy go-to site for gift ideas.  They offer a variety of items and cater to all price ranges.

3. Mars Images

Photo Credit: Mars Images

I’m a big fan of the sciences.  I grew up on PBS with shows like Newton’s Apple and 3-2-1 Contact.  There are very few fields that don’t interest me, and when I find an app that helps make science more tangible, I’m very intrigued.   Recently, Wired did an article featuring the app, Mars Images, which is available for Andriod and iOS.  It allows you to view images of the surface of Mars taken by NASA’s rover, Opportunity.  After selecting an image, you can zoom in, get additional information, view in 3D, and even share the pictures with friends and family.  It’s one of those developments that just makes you realize how far technology has come that we can view pictures of the face of Mars on our handheld devices.  Amazing!

4. Boticca.com

Photo Credit: Boticca.com

Boticca.com is more than just a website for accessories.  They take pride in finding highly talented, up and coming designers to feature and provide a venue for them to sell their work.  It is referred to as an online marketplace where you buy direct from the artist, but payments are still processed securely through the site.  The first tab you’ll come across is a SALE section; which is much appreciated since the items are high-quality designer pieces, and some can be expensive.  Boticca also features new items, style ideas, a gift guide where you can search by price point or the type of person receiving the present, as well as an inspiring and entertaining blog feature.  This is a great resource to help you stay on the cutting edge of fashion.

5. Cristobal Vila

Photo Credit: Etereaestudios.com

Etereaestudios.com is the online gallery for Cristóbal Vila.  He is an accomplished 3D computer graphics artist who has created numerous incredible images and short films.  Influenced by M.C. Escher, Frank Lloyd Wright, and the Fibonacci Sequence his work is inspired and stunning.  His art can be viewed through his personal website,  YouTube, and Vimeo.  Vila first caught my attention with his 3D animation of Fallingwater, the architectural matstepiece by Frank Lloyd Wright that stands in Pennsylvania, cantilevered over a waterfall.  Upon further research into his endeavors, I was captivated by his Nature by Numbers and Nixus movies, as well.  His work is impeccable, and I look forward to seeing more from him in the future.

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