Prior to 9/11 many New York City-based business proudly displayed the Twin Towers as part of their skyline-centric logos. Even though it’s been nearly eight years since the tragedy at the World Trade Center, many of those same companies still carry the same image on their signs. In an effort to ensure that the Twin Towers will never vanish from our memories, Ji Lee, one of our favorite creative minds, began the WTC Logo Preservation Project. The open project collects logos still utilizing the iconic buildings. It is a great way to uphold that indelible image and meaning of the New York we once knew.
Crowdsourcing is coming to this year's San Francisco Women's Film Festival, the Bay Area’s annual celebration of recent contributions to documentary, LGBT, and dramatic film. Indie-Fest recently opened an online screening competition sponsored by the film forum and marketplace IndieFlix. While the festival begins on April 1, voting on five shorts is open until the end of the month, with the winner getting a screening at SFWFF. Characters in the shorts include a soldier going AWOL in the Iraqi desert, a child dressed as the Hindu god Ganesh, and exotic parrots (why not?). Scarlett Shepard, founder of the festival and the Bay Area-based Women's Film Institute, said that "between the festival, the Internet and audience engagement, this is a great platform for people around the globe to see great indie films made by women.”
The fashion world is changing. The ethics of where and how clothes of made have become just as important as the color and the shape. Our friends at Apolis Activism have taken a strong approach to making some remarkable clothing while keeping their values of ethically made clothing at hand. Three brothers with a very impressive collection of passport stamps started the Apolis Activism label and have quickly developed it into a very impressive line of men’s clothing.
We caught up with the three brothers that make up Apolis Activism just before the release of their new Spring/Summer line. Have a read after the jump (including some nice new pictures from S/S ’09).
The first time Common Threadz caught our eye they were utilizing talented artists to help less fortunate children of Africa afford school uniforms. Fortunately, they haven’t stopped supporting creative minds and the cause of needy kids in Africa, they’ve only expanded their reach. The Orphan Collection raises money for the cause by featuring the children’s own artwork and designs. Each T-shirt sold goes to feed one child for a month. How many tees in your closet are feeding malnourished children?
Millions of people are talking all day, every day on twitter. But what if all those people came together and actually did something? Enter Twestival, a global event organized through twitter taking place on February 12th. Over 100 cities have signed up for events, rounded up sponsors and put together guest lists. The goal of the event is to raise money and awareness to combat the 1.1 billion people who don’t tweet have clean water to drink. To find out more about the cause visit the charity: water group. Each city is asked to set a goal of at least $4,000 (the price to sponsor a water well in a development area). Check out this page to find out more information.
It’s great to see a classroom project launch a social enterprise company that is then able to provide for increased educational opportunities. That’s the case for Better World Books, “the online bookstore with a soul” founded by three Notre Dame alums that collect used books and sell new ones to help fund literacy efforts worldwide. Their newest partner is Invisible Children, a program that uses multimedia to discuss the ongoing war in northern Uganda and the need for improved classrooms and resources. The two organizations have invited high school and college students to host book drives as part of the “schools for schools” initiative and have raised more than a million dollars with the involvement of 2,000 schools. By visiting the Invisible Children partnership page on BetterWorld.com, online book buyers can have the proceeds of their purchases benefit Ugandan school children while helping inspire action education and hope in a place that desperately needs both.
Needy dogs in shelters and Barack Obama are about to have something in common. In addition to being “mutts” like Obama, they are now also the subject of an iconic Shepard Fairey poster. As the new first family readies to move into the White House and adopt a shelter puppy, millions of other animals around the U.S. desperately await homes. Shepard was approached by Pia Salk, an animal advocate working with the non-profit Adopt-a-Pet.com, to collaborate on a way to help these animals.
Fairey says, “I’m a big believer in speaking up for all who suffer injustice, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation or in this case, species!Â And I’m all for adopting from the shelter. My wife and I share our home with two pooches,Â George and Weezie, who is a rescue. They are the happy canine siblings to our two human daughters. The image I created for this print reminds me of a dog I had as kid, a mutt named Honey.”
The image will be available in a limited run of 400 signed and numbered silk-screen prints later this month at muttslikeme.com. Proceeds from the sale will go to getting the nation’s “furry, non-partisan residents” into homes. In true Shepard Fairey-fashion, you can also download free wheat-pasteable PDFs and digital-age web banners on the site. Get the word out!
Green Light Flix, a vegan-friendly community of animal rights activists and environmentalists, has opened the doors of their film studio to member participation in the creation of podcasts, videos, and web content. The Florida-based, fan-managed studio is more of an online creation hub than an exporter of slaughterhouse footage; it aims to make producers out of contributors who pay $25+ annually. Their efforts help finance the films, and also give them a say in the projects, their logos, and websites. Besides educational videos about vegan chefs and “greentrepreneurs,” the site also features projects in development for member voting, with the highest rated films getting produced and DVD copies going to the members who helped in their creation. “There are millions of vegetarians and vegans around the world, and many of us are insulted by being portrayed in films and TV shows as pale, 85-pound hippies that look sickly and need a murdered farm animal’s carcass and dairy products to feel better,” said Green Light Flix co-founder Scott Cardinal.
We totally love Justin Gignac and his girlfriend Christine‘s work, all of it from the garbage collection to the WANTS and NEEDS paintings. After their trip to Las Vegas they are giving back a little. They’ve just put up a some new works or the holidays. If you are new to their style, they make very simple and literal paintings of objects that relate to charities. The price of the painting is the price of the object — i.e. a $100 donation to Habitat for Humanity for a painting of a front door to a home that cost $100. These paintings go very quickly because they tend to be priced quite well. If you happen to pick up one of their NEED paintings, you could give the painting as a gift and along with a note about the charity aspect … that’s a double gift!!
This year just to raise as much money possible, they have put three original works up on eBay for auction.
1. Home Sweet Home "” Sale goes to Habitat for Humanity
2. A New Toy "” Sale goes to Toys for Tots
3. A Good Meal "” Sales goes to Food Bank for NYC
If you can’t win the auction, there are some more prints that should be available soon.
Can’t volunteer for hours a week? Don’t have a big chunk of change to give away to worthy causes? These limitations may have kept you from making the world a better place 10 years ago, but Care2 founder Randy Paynter and team are looking to limit barriers to involvement through their community’s upcoming cause-related campaigns.
Come mid-December the site will offer community news, group discussions, online petitions, and–not to fear–volunteer opportunities around women’s rights, animal welfare, the environment, and other topics that are front-of-mind. It’s all part of Paynter’s goal to empower everyday folks to get involved in progressive and consciousness-raising causes that are good on both the “me” and “we” front. The site, which has never advertised but has grown to nine million members through word of mouth among people interested in human rights and social welfare, will later be inviting individuals to create their own cause pages around personal passion points.