Floaty feelings + Friday finds

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For some reason this early spring weather is giving me a kind of floaty feeling. It’s the sense, I think, of a temperature where you lose the awareness of temperature. Where the nerves on the surface of your skin don’t demand any corrective actions, neither perspiring nor signaling to the brain to pull the sleeves down and walk faster. And thus having no job to do, the temperature-sensing nerves are lulled for a brief period into an indolent daze, and for a little while walking around outside doesn’t feel like anything at all. It is a peculiar kind of joy: a strange disembodiment. When the air temperature is not nice, you build a boundary around yourself. But when it is like this, you forget about the boundary. You are lighter, you are free to forget where you end and where the air begins. 

If we could photograph this feeling, it might look something like these photos by Jordan Sullivan, of the light in Death Valley. Light, dream, boundary-less. That’s the vibe I’m taking with me into the weekend. 

On to the Friday finds: 

  • I love the large-scale snow art of Simon Beck but even so, was not expecting this video about him to be so charming. 
  • Children can tell the difference between abstract art and similar works made by other children or animals. I think this is interesting given previous research that suggests paintings by artists like Jackson Pollack have underlying fractal patterns
  • My friend and IDEO colleague (and magician!) Andrew Evans has an amazing show called the Magic Patio. I haven’t seen it yet but this is a great write-up about it. 
  • Is boredom worse than sadness? Not clear, but this study suggests boredom is so agonizing people are willing to give themselves electric shocks to distract themselves from it. 
  • I’ve been looking into different kinds of festivals lately and I love these images of a cleansing ritual called Yssah, taking place near Yakutsk, in Russia.
  • It seems joyful to me that we might soon be able to open our phones with a doodle. Anytime we can replace a number with a shape, I’m all for it. And research says it’s faster too. 
  • Charles Darwin’s kids drew all over his manuscript for On the Origin of the Species and the drawings are delightful

Oh, and lastly I’m speaking at the OTA conference in Bismarck on Monday and there’s a little interview with me on their site, if you want to check it out. And to all you OTA attendees, I’m looking forward to meeting you!

Have a wonderful weekend! 

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Images: Jordan Sullivan

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