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Steelberg via Instagram

This Artist is Making VHS Covers for Current Movies

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Steelberg via Instagram

Before websites and discussion forums could clue you in to what movies you might want to spend your Friday night watching, roaming the aisles of a video store was the norm. Distributors knew you might make a spontaneous choice based on box art, which tried to be as provocative as possible. The clamshell cases were usually dirty, smudged, and marked with store stickers.

If you miss that experience, an artist named Steelberg has got just the thing: He’s been posting retro VHS rental cases of newer films on his Instagram feed, and they’re so accurate you can practically hear the condescending tone of the clerk nearby.

Steelberg via Instagram

In an interview with Vehlinngo, Steelberg says that being a “child of the ‘80s” got the work started, and that he tries to pick films that lend themselves to that VHS aesthetic. He also mentioned that some directors—he didn’t mention who—have gotten in touch to pay their compliments. He has even been approached to do some commissions.

Steelberg via Instagram

Another Instagram artist, OfftrackOutlet, has a similar project underway, but he’s taking the additional measure of dubbing the films over to a VHS cassette for that snowy, tracking-enabled feel. The format may be gone—the last VCR unit rolled off the assembly line last month in Japan—but it might be a long time before it's forgotten.

[h/t /Film]

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Courtesy Chronicle Books
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Design
Inside This Pop-Up Book Are a Planetarium, a Speaker, a Decoder Ring, and More
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Courtesy Chronicle Books

Designer Kelli Anderson's new book is for more than just reading. This Book Is a Planetarium is really a collection of paper gadgets. With each thick, card stock page you turn, another surprise pops out.

"This book concisely explains—and actively demonstrates with six functional pop-up paper contraptions—the science at play in our everyday world," the book's back cover explains. It turns out, there's a whole lot you can do with a few pieces of paper and a little bit of imagination.

A book is open to reveal a spiralgraph inside.
Courtesy Chronicle Books

There's the eponymous planetarium, a paper dome that you can use with your cell phone's flashlight to project constellations onto the ceiling. There's a conical speaker, which you can use to amplify a smaller music player. There's a spiralgraph you can use to make geometric designs. There's a basic cipher you can use to encode and decode secret messages, and on its reverse side, a calendar. There's a stringed musical instrument you can play on. All are miniature, functional machines that can expand your perceptions of what a simple piece of paper can become.

The cover of This Book Is a Planetarium
Courtesy Chronicle Books
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Noriyuki Saitoh
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Art
Japanese Artist Crafts Intricate Insects Using Bamboo
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Noriyuki Saitoh

Not everyone finds insects beautiful. Some people think of them as scary, disturbing, or downright disgusting. But when Japanese artist Noriyuki Saitoh looks at a discarded cicada shell or a feeding praying mantis, he sees inspiration for his next creation.

Saitoh’s sculptures, spotted over at Colossal, are crafted by hand from bamboo. He uses the natural material to make some incredibly lifelike pieces. In one example, three wasps perch on a piece of honeycomb. In another, two mating dragonflies create a heart shape with their abdomens.

The figures he creates aren’t meant to be exact replicas of real insects. Rather, Saitoh starts his process with a list of dimensions and allows room for creativity when fine-tuning the appearances. The sense of movement and level of detail he puts into each sculpture is what makes them look so convincing.

You can browse the artist’s work on his website or follow him on social media for more stunning samples from his portfolio.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

[h/t Colossal]

All images courtesy of Noriyuki Saitoh.

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