Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Into the Mystic

Where are my socks? I was wearing some, but they seem to have been knocked off. This next collection comes from a rising star in Kansas City. Mackenzie Becker's latest works have utterly inspired me with whimsy, vividness, and an overall scene of a living picture. Quite frankly, these pieces make my head explode.  The colors elegantly blend, swirl, and intertwine into pools of pure beauty.  The black ink in each piece is actually hundreds upon thousands of tiny black circles.  The artist says she finds making these circles very relaxing. The largest piece, "Into the Mystic," was named after the artist's favorite song by Van Morrison.  The fitting title speaks volumes about this work. When I tremble in front of this breathing, flowing, masterpiece I can't help but lose myself for a moment.  Mackenzie said, " The colors more signify my pattern of thought, and the loop is my focus in life."  Jittering with anticipation, I am awaiting Mackenzie Becker's next stroke of genius.

"Into the Mystic"

Warning: Artistic Freedom

I am no profound art critique.  That being said I was at a loss for words when I first saw this piece by Ryan Andrews.  Ryan is a young up and coming artist in Kansas City with a flair for the odd and abstract. When viewing this piece at first I was slightly shocked and offended, but after speaking with Ryan, the method to his madness began to shine through.  This piece could be seen as just another deer with leather, and a whip in its mouth, or a harsh parallel to the inner desires on man through the piercing gaze of nature.  Or perhaps it showcases our primal urges.  However you see this piece remember, art can never be right or wrong, and more often than not it will make us think.  Overall, I salute Mr. Andrews for his bravery with this piece, and can't wait to see what he comes up with next. 

The Wolf who Cried Marketing

If you watch TV you have probably seen an Old Spice ad before.  As per the usual, Old Spice has obliterated the advertising world with their new campaign, "Answer the Smell of the Wild."  Wieden+Kennedy has changed the game with this campaign, launching two new scents from Old Spice, Wolfthorn and Hawkridge.  With a new commercial for each scent Old Spice uses the primal instinct lying deep within mankind to make us buy their scents, ensuring that we won't in-stink.  Terrible jokes aside this campaign has a rapidly rising new star.  Of course I'm talking about Mr. Wolfdog, their new Executive Director of marketing. In reality Mr. Wolfdog is a wolf sitting in an office chair cloaked in a puppet suit.  There is also a "translator," around his neck in order to communicate with humans.  Mr. Wolfdog claims to be a master of marketing and I couldn't agree more.  He is featured on twitter, @Mr_WolfDog, has his own Tumblr, and has a debut album entitled, "Night Business.” When the recipe calls for One part Jackie Moon, one part Don Draper, and one part wild animal it combines for a perfect spokes-wolf. Moreover, Mr. Wolfdog is used to emphasize the truly animalistic qualities of these new scents.   Cleverly using business antics to portray comedy and antiperspirants, Mr. WolfDog is here to stay. With the 18-35 market square between its sights Old Spice lands another classic campaign.  Not to mention that the overall campaign strategy was executed and tied together flawlessly.  Lastly, this campaign uses the messaging with brutal simplicity while wrapping the ads in a hilarious scenario.

Twitter: @Mr_WolfDog

Cupid Kicks it up a Knotch

For those who don't know Zoosk is an online dating website, and I have been smitten by their new campaign "Heart Friend."  This is a campaign comprised of six ads uses down to Earth comedy, a best friend feel, and practically relays Zoosk's message.  Your heart wants what it wants, and in this case literally tells you.  Zoosk uses the Heart Friend to voice the inner desires of "Liz," a single gal trying to find her way in the dating world.  Personally, I love that the Heart Friend was cast as a male.  Not only does this add to the humor, but it also gives the ads a more natural feel.  In each add Heart Friend and Liz are discussing their ideal man.  It displays the functionality of the site through comedic banter; which is a nice change of pace from a spokesman, or couple just talking about another dating site.  Continually, this campaign masterfully targets the younger dating scene.  Bravo Zoosk, Bravo.

Is your bank account smelling a little Fishy?

Like the majority of college students I'm on a budget.  Also like the majority of college students I love sushi.  If you need to save a few pennies, have a good time, and scratch that sushi itch in the process, I've got the place for you. Friends Sushi & Bento Place on W 39th St. is a tremendous way to eat some fantastic sushi while not breaking the bank.  How is this possible?  Well, every Monday during lunch and dinner hours Friends has several specials including $3.99 rolls, (6 pieces), and $1.00 Nigiri that will make your tummy write you a personalized thank you card.  Now, although the selections of specials do not include their entire menu, any selection will be more than satisfying.  My personal favorites include the Crunchy Spicy Salmon, Spicy Crab, and BBQ Eel rolls.  I also must mention that I was never a fan of plain fish until I tried their Nigiri.  One piece of their Smoked Salmon will change your outlook on life.  For lack of a better description their Smoked Salmon tastes like the best piece of bologna ever crafted by the hands of Mother Nature.  The way it effortlessly melts in your mouth is simply blissful.  The only downside to this entire dining experience is the inevitable moment when your plate is turned into a ghost town.  The atmosphere is authentic and sophisticated while maintaining a relaxed attitude. If dinner and a show is more your thing try grabbing a seat at the bar to watch the sushi being crafted.  My advice would be to watch your calendars and get there early.

1808 W 39th St  Kansas City, MO 64111
(816) 753-6666

Sunday, March 31, 2013

The King of Cafes

Crown Candy Kitchen, located in scenic downtown St. Louis, has some of the best diner food I have ever tasted in my young life.  However, Crown Candy isn't just diner food; their ice cream and candy are made in-house and couldn't be more delicious.  Ice cream flavors from Black Cherry to Oreo, and Pineapple-Orange to Black Walnut, if you like ice cream you surely won't be disappointed.  Are enormous sandwiches your thing? Any of Crown Candy's piled high sandwiches will absolutely make your stomach jump with joy.  After all, they don't call it the, "Home of the heart Stopping BLT," for nothing.  Adding an ice cold custom beverage, or monumental milkshake is a perfect way to round out your meal.  Crown Candy's vintage decor makes the atmosphere warm, welcoming, and appetite whetting. Continually, with seasonal decorations and candy, like the Easter Monkey, Crown Candy truly hits all the marks.  My advice would be to experience this wonderland of bacon, ice cream, and candy whenever you get the chance.  Just be sure to show up early, because the line is usually out the door. Happy Easter!

St Louis Ave, St Louis, MO
(314) 621-9650