Thursday, June 21, 2018

DRB Visual Caffeine #6

DRB Visual Caffeine #6:

Link - by Avi Abrams

DRB Visual Caffeine: a thrilling blend of art, architecture, myths and fabulous technology - Issue 6

This is the sixth issue of our "visual caffeine mix" (read the first one here) - somewhat unpredictable short forays into spectacular history of art and architecture, coupled with mythology, culture and fabulous (modern and vintage, often quaintly obsolete) technology.


Baroque Spaceships and Byzantine Machinery

Coming in for the landing: this golden starship looks like something straight out of Ian M. Banks "Culture" novels, or a dream illustration for some Alastair Reynolds "Revelation Space" epics:

(image credit: Jae Cheol Park)

This is the work of Jae Cheol Park (who goes by "PaperBlue" on ArtStation) and we highly recommend checking out his other work there. Great website for futuristic flying machinery geeks Concept Ships also has an overview PaperBlue art.

Hailing from the heady 1970s-1980s Golden Age of Manga/Anime Space Adventure is this Captain Harlock spaceship, created by legendary Leiji Matsumoto for the "Space Pirate Captain Harlock" manga series:

(image via)

Pablo Castello's "Brain Bot": a perfect illustration/cover for Philip K. Dick "existential android angst" fiction - see more concept art awesomeness by Pablo Castaño Norkus (from Caba, Argentina) at his ArtStation portfolio:

"Reconstruction Project" impresses with gigantic, mega-complex "oil refinery style on steroids" sophistication:

(images credit: Pablo Castaño Norkus)


Cities in the Sky

"Laputa: Castle in the Sky" by Hayao Miyazaki (info) is still my favorite high-fantasy/dieselpunk fix (which is admittedly a strange combination, but Japanese are so adept at combining the fairy-like purity and "blood & sweat" of the machines in their pop culture - and this is one of the best examples). The following are some high-fantasy Tolkienesque cities set in a "Lost World" environments - truly a potent visual mix, if there ever was one:

(original unknown)

SilentField from Seoul, South Korea, has a smorgasbord of high-flying cities on his ArtStation page:

(images credit: SilentField)

"Magic Kingdom" by Ivan Laliashvili - his portfolio is also worth taking a look:

(image credit: Ivan Laliashvili)


Victorian Fairies & Angels, by legendary Hans Zatzka

Hans Zatzka exemplifies Beaux-Arts and Baroque Rococo Revival in his visually stunning paintings: he worked between 1890s-1910s in Vienna, and his style became the standard for fanciful decorations in Europe during that Silver Age before the advent of Art Deco and harsh realities of Totalitarianism and militarization in the 1930s. His work explodes with flowers and sheer joy of living, his painting are inhabited by fairies, "Spring Beauties", female Elves (of that unadulterated Rivendell highly-exalted variety) and female angels (muses):

This oriental dancer is still as beautiful as any angel in previous pictures. By the way, I highly recommend hunting down and reading Richard Burton original unexpurgated 12-volume "Arabian Nights" translation; this Hans Zatzka painting perfectly captures the heady exotic and highly-glamorous atmosphere of that literary wonder:

What's that with the swans? German fairy tales (such as The Six Swans, The Wild Swans, etc) abound with transformations of beautiful women (fairies) into swans; many ancient myths have the same motif (see Arabian Nights, for example):

Charming the animals, before Snow White and Cinderella were "Disneyfied" for the silver screen:

Dutch and Flemish painters in the last quarter of the 16th century have perfected the art of majestic still life compositions, see for example work of Jan Bruegel - but Hans Zatzka has brought the similar "flower explosions" back into fashion in the 1890s Europe:

Another "Floral Apotheosis" in oils: is this the ultimate in sensual and joyful art? decide for yourself:

Some of the Victorian high-fantasy/pastoral pastimes are enumerated here:

And we finish with the "dream sequence", easily one of our most favorite Victorian/Neo-Baroque paintings:

(images credit: Hans Zatzka)


Soaring Deco Imagery

Continuing our visual time travel from Art Nouveau to Art Deco, we enter the "imperial-minded" Thirties, and the most appropriate symbol for the whole era is, perhaps, a sinister gargoyle sitting on a proud "industrial temple" skyscraper. Here we have New York City gargoyle captured on film by legendary photographer Margaret Bourke-White (former associate editor and staff photographer of Fortune magazine), who braved the heights viewing these creatures of stone up close in 1930:

(image credit: Margaret Bourke-White, via)

More Gotham can be seen in concept art of Dylan Cole (right image below), in 1930s Chicago skyline shots (left), and in unknown artist futuristic panorama conceived below:

(top right image credit: Dylan Cole Studio, bottom image: original unknown)

Art Deco Movie Sets were truly masterpieces of epic proportions: witness, for example, Greta Garbo and Conrad Nagel in "The Kiss" (pre-code Hollywood film from 1929, info) - set design by Cedric Gibbons (Irish-born art director and production designer). The following collage also features Nadja Regin in a glamorous mode (as "The Goldfinger" Bonita girl):

Corinne Griffith is shown below left, as the "Spirit of Ecstasy" in the year 2500 A.D. in "Lilies of the Field" (1930) - and on the right are John Boles & Nancy Carroll in 1933 "Child Of Manhattan":

(images via)

On the right below Merna Kennedy - this is one of our favorite images and movie sets from the Art Deco and Film Noir era:

(images via)

Showgirls from "Dames" 1934 movie (left) and Greta Garbo in the "The Mysterious Lady" (1928) on the right - she gives us that classic bored/sophisticated look that pierces the soul (especially considering the fate of Germany coming soon after):

(images via)


Chrome, Shark Fins, and Big Car Ecstasy

Some of the shark-finned police cars are a pleasure to behold, and are highly collectible today:

1958 Pontiac Bonneville Custom Sport Coupe is simply spectacular piece of "Detroit Iron":

(images credit: Barrett-Jackson Auctions)

"The Engineer's Triumph: 1949 Chrysler New Yorker" - read more about it:

Continuing on to the 1970s and "The Chrysler Fuselage Look": Dodge Monaco 2-door Hardtop 1971 (see more at CarInfo):

Another example of fuselage design: Plymouth in all its glory -

True to our tradition of mixing retro actresses and girl models with glamorous cars, here are Hayley Mills, Jenny Agguter, and further down Russian actresses: Ada Sheremetieva in "Molodo-Zeleno" (1962) and Galina Belyaeva:

Traveling in style:

(unknown 1950s Italian movie still)

Marylin Monroe

Grace Kelly (Princess of Monaco) and Jean Simmons - the epitome of glamour:

The sultry 1960s look: actress Jackie Lane (later Jocelyn Lane):


Note of Luxury

Arriving at modern times, we see glamour alive and well: witness work by Kristina Makeeva - and on the right is the latest Rolex luxury watch auction: "Rainbow Daytona" appeared at Sotheby's Action with estimated price of 300.000 USD:

(images credit: Kristina Makeeva, Sothebys)


Keep on trucking!

Here is a beautiful Kenworth K100 Truck:

Russian "Shaman" is the mind-boggling version of the ultimate off-road truck, sporting somewhat intimidating look:

That "Shaman" vehicle would fit right in as a "land cruiser" vehicle in Harlan Ellison's classic of 1970s post-apocalyptic adventure "Damnation Alley". Here is another twisted "zombie apocalypse vehicle" vision of these crazy Russian engineers: Sherp ATV (more info and images here):

(image via)

This is all for now, folks. Keep the sunshine, and stay tuned for more awesomeness on DRB. Visual Caffeine issues, Feel-Good issues (formely "Biscotti Bits") and Link Latte (link compilations) should brighten up your daily coffee ritual, as we've been happily providing them since 2005:

Read previous Visual Caffeine Issues here:

Issue #5

Issue #4

Issue #3

Issue #2

Issue #1



Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram

Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram: The Hertzsprung-Russell diagram is located in its own lower right corner, unless you're viewing it on an unusually big screen.

Image caption:
The Hertzsprung-Russell diagram is located in its own lower right corner, unless you're viewing it on an unusually big screen.

Starring: Alpine A110 By Kévin Goudin

Starring: Alpine A110

By Kévin Goudin
: tumblr_pa6g50UZKT1qb815co1_500.jpg

Starring: Alpine A110

By Kévin Goudin

Starring: Bugatti Chiron By Michael L. Photography

Starring: Bugatti Chiron

By Michael L. Photography
: tumblr_pa86e9UAja1qb815co1_500.jpg

Starring: Bugatti Chiron

By Michael L. Photography

Starring: Citroen Ami By epaves68 Thanks for 2.500.000...

Starring: Citroen Ami

By epaves68 Thanks for 2.500.000...
: tumblr_pa86nraXRG1qb815co1_500.jpg

Starring: Citroen Ami

By epaves68 Thanks for 2.500.000 views!

Starring: De Tomaso Guarà By sam_aivalli

Starring: De Tomaso Guarà

By sam_aivalli
: tumblr_pa86ssrZoo1qb815co1_500.jpg

Starring: De Tomaso Guarà

By sam_aivalli

Starring: Ford Mustang By Thomas Rondeau

Starring: Ford Mustang

By Thomas Rondeau
: tumblr_pa86ujc4yR1qb815co1_500.jpg

Starring: Ford Mustang

By Thomas Rondeau

Uber will pay drivers in some cities to use electric cars

Uber will pay drivers in some cities to use electric cars: dims?crop=3000%2C2000%2C0%2C0&quality=85

Uber would like its drivers to go electric, but it knows that practical realities like high prices and hours of charging time make that difficult. Its solution? Give those drivers a helping hand. It's launching an EV Champions pilot program in seven cities (Austin, Los Angeles, Montreal, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle) that includes "direct monetary incentives" to drive EVs in some cities, including the existing testing ground of Pittsburgh. Local utilities are sometimes fronting part of the cost.

The compensation varies, but don't expect to buy a Model 3 with your fare. The LA Times learned that drivers in Pittsburgh, San Diego and San Francisco are getting just $1 extra per ride, with at least San Diego drivers capping out at $20 per week. Sacramento drivers Suffice it to say this is more for part-time drivers who are thinking of signing up for Uber than full-timers who want to recoup the cost of their car.

There are other perks, though. Drivers get access to education and resources that can help them find every available rebate or other incentive program (not just federal level tax credits). In Canada, Quebec drivers will receive memberships to an EV advocacy group that can give them reduced insurance premiums. And wherever drivers operate, there will be EV-specific app features, such as a notification for longer trips (30 minutes or more) to help them plan their charging times.

As a passenger, you'll be alerted when you pair up with an EV driver if you're either in the US or Montreal, Canada.

Is this going to tip the balance dramatically in favor of Uber, or EVs as a whole? Not likely. It might influence an Uber driver's buying decision if an EV is in their price range, though. We'd add that there's a competitive motivation as well. Lyft plans to use EVs (particularly autonomous EVs) to help reach its climate goals, and it might cement its reputation as a kinder ridesharing service if it goes unopposed. Uber now has a talking point that it might use to reel in eco-conscious riders.

Via: LA Times, The Verge

Source: Uber Newsroom

Porsche invests in EV supercar-maker Rimac

Porsche invests in EV supercar-maker Rimac: porsche-rimac.jpg

Just recently, luxury automaker Porsche teased its electric Mission E sports car, showing its shadowy silhouette that's not unlike its other non-EV cars. Now, the company has shown that it's getting even more serious about electric vehicles and its Mission E development by teaming up with EV supercar-maker Rimac. Porsche has taken a minority shareholding of ten percent in Rimac Automobili, which you might know as the creator of Concept Two hypercar EV. In addition to manufacturing incredibly fast electric vehicles, Rimac also develops and produces EV components.

Porsche Deputy Chairman of the Executive Board and Member of the Executive Board for Finance and IT Lutz Meschke, said the company hopes "to enter into close collaboration with the company in the form of a development partnership." Presumably, that means Rimac will help its new partner design and make parts for its electric vehicles going forward. Rimac CEO Mate Rimac said in a statement: "This partnership now is an important step for [the company] on our way to become a component and system supplier of choice for the industry in electrification, connectivity and the exciting field of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems."

Source: Porsche