This site showcases the (mostly) digital work of Andrew DiFiore from both Virtual Arts Studios and answerYES Interactive as well as random thoughts and experimental projects too volatile to be contained anywhere else.

 
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    Pinterest, Latest Social Media Darlin’

    Just when you were getting used to organizing your Circles on Google+ a new kid hits the block: Pinterest. This nubile social media site describes itself as a “virtual pinboard” designed to bridge the gap between your real life and your online one. But you can think of it as a sexy blend of Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.

    In just six months Pinterest has skyrocketed to 11 million strong, making it the latest social media darlin’ on the Web. And it would seem investors are as infatuated as the early adopters, pinning $37 million on the 8-person start-up. For sure, Pinterest is easy to use and easy on the eyes. I’m certainly more eager to go out on a date than I was when my cousin set me up with Tumblr (but that was in ancient times when computers had vacuum tubes, powered by mice in steel wheels).

    Alas, I guess I’ll have to add yet another social icon to this blog.

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    Facebook Timeline for Brands Arrive

    As expected, Facebook officially rolled out the Timeline feature for brand pages yesterday at their Facebook Marketing Conference. There will be plenty of blogging over the next few weeks as companies flesh out their histories online. With the ability to go back 100 years, that’s a whole lot of fleshing. Some brands already fleshed out include Ford, Coca-Cola, Starbucks, and Old Spice. Check them out for inspiration for your own brand and then head over to Mashable for Facebook Timeline for Brands: The Complete Guide.

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    The Web is Full of Talented People

    While ferreting out every Ben Folds song I could find on the Web (circa 2008), I discovered yet another amazing talent in the form of Julia Nunes who did this cover of “Gone” while playing the ukulele (yes, that’s right, the ukulele). Over the years I’ve tuned into her YouTube channel (Jaaaaaaa) to hear as much about her “ride” as her music. You see, Julia Nunes is a force of nature. If her music doesn’t get you then her goofy, exuberant personality and infectious smile most certainly will.

    Julia has been singing and writing songs since she was 14 and has been publishing videos on YouTube since 2006 where she has amass a large, dedicated fanbase. Including Ben Folds, who upon seeing her videos, asked her to open at four of his shows. She has since performed with many other artists (e.g. Weezer, Ben Kweller, The Bacon Brothers), produced three albums under her own label Rude Butler Records, and most recently appeared on Conan (her television debut) to perform her latest single “Stay Awake” (below).

    On June 11th, 2011, Julia launched a Kickstarter page to raise $15,000 for her fourth album Settle Down (due out today). Within 24 hours she had nearly $19,000 and by the time it was over, she had raised $77,888 from 1,685 pledges. As a result, she spent more time in the studio, hired more musicians, and produced several higher quality videos. The three video vignettes below show off her range from playful to sultry.

    You can get her latest album here. Last month, Evan Schlansky on American Songwriter did this interview with Julia Nunes. Worth the read.

    Move Over Hotstepper

    Now that the New York Fashion Week is behind us I can contribute to the post-show noise if for no other reason then it makes for good SEO.

    Admittedly, I’m not much of a fashionista or stylephyle or even a clothes horse but I am something of a music buff (just cruise this site) so this post is less about Prêt-à-Porter (though I do like their wit) and more about the Prêt-à-Porter theme song. No, not the soundtrack to Robert Altman’s 1994 black comedy starring Sophia Loren. I’m talking about “Get the Look” by Pablo Avion that is destined to become the biggest runway runaway hit since Ini Kamoze’s “Here Comes the Hotstepper”. And get this, Pablo is releasing his next two singles on 8-track cartridges! Why? Because he can and it is retro-cool. His musical style is eclectic and sometimes reminiscent of bygone days. This little ditty sounds a bit like a snarky Herman’s Hermits.

    Baby, you’re gonna’ get the look
    I know I’ll catch you in the center
    Before you bait the hook
    Baby, you’re gonna’ make it real
    I know you’re gonna’ come out angling
    No matter what I feel

    One day, prêt-à-porter
    You’re gonna’ have it, your little way
    You’re gonna’ splash it, in West L.A.

    ‘Cause, you’ve got the look
    Just like Antonioni’s Blow Up
    But you keep me hangin’ on
    Just like some B-film makeup artist, on the run

    Baby, you’re gonna’ model right
    I know you’re gonna’ come out squawking
    You’re gonna’ last all night
    Baby, you’re gonna’ rule the scene
    I know you’re gonna’ put on purple
    To make the queens all scream

    One day, prêt-à-porter
    You’re gonna’ have it, your little way
    You’re gonna’ splash it, in West L.A.

    ‘Cause, you’ve got the look
    Just like Antonioni’s Blow Up
    But you keep me hangin’ on
    Just like some B-film makeup artist, on the run

    Baby, one day I’m gonna’ prove
    All the things you had to gain by staying
    All the things you’ll lose

    One day, prêt-à-porter
    I’m gonna’ mack it, I’m gonna make my way
    To L.A., I’m gonna’ smash it

    ‘Cause, you’ve got the look
    Just like Antonioni’s Blow Up
    But you keep me hangin’ on
    Just like some B-film makeup artist, on the run

    You’ve got the look
    Just like Antonioni’s Blow Up
    But you keep me hangin’ on
    Just like some B-film makeup artist, on the run

    If you’re really interested in the actual runway music from New York Fashion Week, Alyssa Vingan put together this playlist for Maire Claire.

    This month’s Cool Tool post goes to FFFFallback, a handy little bookmarklet that lets web designers easily test different fallback fonts for their web-based creations.

    To install, simply drag the bookmarklet to your browser’s toolbar (only works for browsers that use WebKit such as Chrome, Safari, and FireFox). To use, simply click the bookmarklet and it will scan the current web page’s CSS for existing Web Fonts and list them on the right side of your browser along with input fields for changing the fonts and font styles (e.g. font-size, color, line-spacing).

    FFFFallback was created by two self-proclaimed “professional nerds” Josh Brewer and Mark Christian who eke out a living at a little known company called Twitter. You can download the source code on github.

    Looking for Web Fonts to fill out your @font-face tag, start with Google’s open-source fonts (with over 400 fonts). If you don’t mind paying a monthly fee for fonts then try Adobe’s Typekit (with over 700 fonts). There is a free plan under Typekit but you only have access to a “trial library”  (at last count 192 fonts) and requires you to display the Typekit badge.

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