Hiking for Emails

One man's dream to modernize his town in the Annapurna Region.


Some people including myself feel that technology is an evil thing, that it removes the humanity in human connections, from our lives, but I guess that comes from a very middle class point of view; a view that comes about during the free time, which is an unknown luxury to most. For some people, the internet is a means to improve their lives. It can help them set up their businesses to improve the poor economy, or allow them to practice medicine, that would have been too advanced for them to achieve if done alone in the dark. It's important to know that things like technology can either be abused, or embraced for good. The question is, when does it spill over from a good thing, to something that becomes toxic?


Colossal Media: Up There

Billboard style advertising is a somewhat of a dying thing compared to all the ads that appear on all our online streamed videos, in our social media apps, our games, etc. Even when it does happen, it's usually done with vinyl. Luckily there exists a company called Colossal Media, who still do meaningful ads, ads with soul, ads that take proper time and energy and life. This short film documentary shows the warriors that show up each day, rain or shine, extreme heat or frigid cold, rig up and paint giant paintings on the sides of the tall buildings around America, but mostly in New York City.

I was walking around Brooklyn to check out a potential studio space to work out of and there these guys were. Doing their thing.

It's slow going but the results are worth it. If another advertisement didn't cover it up, these paintings will last a lifetime. It'll wear, but it'll last.

Lettering: Birthday Card

It was recently my grandpa's 88th birthday so I lettered a card for him using single stroke and script styles. The first step, pictured above, was the sketch out the card.

Then I shaded the back of the paper of the sketch and transferred the sketch onto the final paper by tracing over the sketch with a ballpoint pen, a bit like carbon copying.

I then started to fill in the letters with a paint marker. I made the mistake of not buying a thinner tipped marker so this part was difficult.

Happy all filled.

Happy Birthday! I then started to fill in the Dear Ojiichan(Dear Granpa in Japanese) with a brush pen. This part was easier since the brush pen has a very fine tip.

Close up.

All finished. It's a bit wonky and the sun character might have looked better with a thinner marker but overall I'm stoked with it.

Sometimes when you do work, you get it to a certain stage and you feel it's good enough. Then you realize there's an extra step you can take to push it to the next level. I added what's called a drop line; a sign painting method to make letters pop.

The drop lines themselves have a bit of character.

I accidentally got some ink on the paper so over the smudge I added a star then dispersed a few more stars around the page to make it look like I did it on purpose.

And here's the final thing.

Cut Brooklyn: Joel Bukiewicz

There's something about Joel Bukiewicz's harsh words that's refreshing to hear when it comes to making things. I don't mind the flowery way that a lot of folks describe their love for creating but a lot of times the process is incredibly frustrating and rightfully so.

Carl Sagan, an insightful astronomer, said, "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe."

So to make an apple pie, you need the apple, you need the apple tree, the seed to make the tree, the soil, the person to plant the tree, the tree planter's parents, the tree planter's parent's parents, the person to make the oven, the person to make the steel to make the oven, the earth to make the steel, the universe to make the earth... you get the point.

So when it comes to making things, I believe that each thing that is made should matter, it should be worth the universe to make.

I feel that Joel does my belief justice with "buckets of blood sweat and fucking work to get there..."

Watch this video and get amped to do something that matters.


Ikaho, Japan

This weekend my family and I went for a quick trip to Ikaho, which is about 2 hours north of Tokyo. This quaint mountain town is known for udon, a thick type of noodle, and hot springs. Unfortunately, I didn't take my camera into the restaurant(one of what seems like hundreds of udon restaurants that are all based right next to each other), but I can assure you that the udon place we went to was totemo oishi(very tasty).


Ray Gascoigne: Bottled History

For the last few years, the handcrafted movement has gained quite a bit of momentum. It's great to see folks searching far and wide for unique items that have taken time and dedication to create; something that will last and hopefully something that runs true in the creator's philosophy. I think what Ray Gascoigne does is awesome. He makes ships in bottles, something that most people know about but few own. Though it's not the most popular item on the list of handcrafted things that people sought after, I think it's pretty badass that he makes them and that he's been doing it for decades.