5 Times LED Lights Became Unexpected and Awesome Works of Art

Through my work with green tech companies, I’ve become more enthusiastic about the potential of LED lighting than I ever thought I would. But I also tend to see only the utilitarian side of the technology: the efficiency, affordability and so on. For a change of pace, I decided to go on an exploration of the artistic side of LED lighting, and discovered there’s an entire genre of sculptures and installation harnessing LED lighting to create beautiful and provocative imagery.

Here are five of my favourite examples so far.

MONUMENT (2008)

Jenny Holzer is a sculptor who has been using LED lighting to project political messages since 1982. Her works combine text written by her and borrowed from other sources, including poetry, to form thought-original pieces.

One of her more recent works was MONUMENT in 2008: a futuristic-looking monolith that displays LED phrases from declassified US government documents surrounding the War on Terror. The result is something that looks like an awesome prop from a movie I wish existed.

LIGHTING GIANTS (2014)

One of the awesome things about LED lighting is their ability to reframe mundane objects into something that gives you pause. That’s definitely the case with this installation in Croatia, in which shipyard cranes were transformed into beautiful geometric sculptures using only the power of colourful lights. Watch the video to see them in action — it’s something like a stationary fireworks display.

SCATTERED LIGHT (2011)

An early adopter of LED lighting in art, Jim Campbell has created temporary and permanent installations all over the US. This particular piece, illuminated in Manhattan’s Madison Square Park, was part of his Exploded Views series – which were meant to reveal hidden images when viewed from afar. Inhabitat’s description of them as LED Magic-Eye pictures is a good way of explaining it. Up close, it looks like a waterfall of LED lights, but it transforms into something else entirely when you take a step back.

ARROW OF TIME (UNFINISHED LIFE) (2016)

Tatsuo Miyajima’s Arrow of Time installation at the Met immersed viewers in an eerie, blood-red world that is meant to make them, “experience the irreversibility of their lives.” In other words, awesome. The work’s 250 LEDs are programmed to count from one to nine repeatedly, then go dark, repeating the sequence to symbolize the unending cycle of birth and death.

PIXEL (2013)

Unlike the other pieces on this list, Pixel is something you can actually buy and take home with you. Like a super-powered LITE BRITE, uses a 32 x 32 LED display to create sprite art. You can customize it using Raspberry Pi, or display one of the many pre-programmed images (but who’d want to settle for that?)

Create Your Own LED Masterpiece

LED lights are awesome, and you can’t go wrong with the guys at Tradeforce for commercial LED applications. On the other hand, if you’re building a 20-foot sculpture designed to remind us of the frailty of life, I’m sure they’d be able to help you out there as well. Visit Tradeforce Tech for commercial LED lighting in Southern Ontario.

Ways to Enjoy Your Retirement

Most of us dream of a time when we can leave the working life behind and bask in our retirement. For some, that means moving to a tropical climate where they can stare out at the waves all day; for others, it just means living a quiet life with little or no responsibilities.

Whatever your preference, retirement does require a bit of planning in order to make the most of your time. While people often say that they look forward to doing nothing in their old age, that is actually not a good idea. Both mind and body prematurely decline if you do not exercise them on a daily basis.
To that end, the number one priority of retirement is…

Stay Busy

Some people find going from a 40 to zero hour week very difficult to handle, and do not adapt well. While we’re not saying you should get back out there full time, a part time job can be rewarding. You also have the liberty of looking for something that you actually want to do. You can also consider volunteering. It’s good to have a sense of accomplishment even after decades of displaying your talents to the world.

If you have no interest in working in any form, consider hobbies, physical activity at the gym, clubs, or societies to join. Just don’t sit at home in front of the TV all of the time.

Travel

Never had the time to visit certain countries or tourist spots? Now is your chance.

Meet New People

While you are out there experiencing your golden years, take advantage of the opportunity to meet new people. A person can never have enough friends and you never know what will come out of a new acquaintance. Some people have found new purpose—and even new romantic partners—during this stage.

Take It Easy

There will be concerns at this stage of life, even if you have a lot of money in the bank. However, try to take them in stride and don’t stress out. Stress is bad for you at any age, but especially in the later stages of life when your body is no longer as good at bouncing back.

What Children Learn from Friendship

Friendship can be one of the prime motivators in our lives. Some of us hold our friends in such high regard, their importance can even surpass family members. Friends know what makes us happy and provide the level of comfort, companionship, fun, and stimulation that can turn an ordinary day into an extraordinary one.

We learn many things about life from the time we spend with friends and this is why it is important for children to have them at a young age. Kids learn much about how the world works from their parents, but when it comes to getting out there and learning how to function, friends are often the main source of enlightenment. In fact, they can be extremely important in helping children forge their own identity.

Time spent with friends is educational in several ways. Spending time and talking with others teaches you new things on a regular basis. It can also instruct you on how to properly function with others, both on a single and group level. For example, kids discover soon that if they treat others badly, they will receive such treatment in kind. However, if they treat others the way they would like to be treated, things will be much smoother. This is especially important when it comes to adult authority figures, such as teachers. Friendship can also contribute to physical health via sports and other games that involve exercise.

You cannot assign friends; friendships must be cultivated. Did your parents ever try to get you to hang out with the kids down the street even though there was nothing in common? Didn’t work, did it? Just like finding a partner later in life, friendships often have to develop devoid of any outside influences. These tend to be the ones that are the longest lasting and most fruitful.

Don’t Be Afraid to Do Nothing

First off, let’s start by explaining that article title. By doing nothing, we do not mean slacking off at work. Not in the least. Your interval of doing nothing starts when your responsibilities are finished for the day. All of us get so wound up by being on a nonstop treadmill during most workdays, it can be tough to come home and unwind because we are often heading right into another series of responsibilities.

However, it is imperative that you get that downtime in order to rest and recharge your batteries. It is common for many workers these days to experience information overload. You know what we mean: emails, phone calls, meetings, instant messages…the list goes on and on and so do the demands made of your attention. That can lead to fatigue, errors, and even eventual burnout.

Staying on top of things at work (or, at least, looking like you are) has become extremely important to some people. But the truth is that instead of always doing more, sometimes you really should be doing less. That time you use to regroup, contemplate, and slow down can be very beneficial for your creative processes. That way, you can think more clearly and fully tap into any inspiration that comes your way.

Not having someone constantly vying for you attention can allow your thoughts to wander in interesting ways. Free association might be seen by some as a waste of time, but it can actually open a doorway into a new avenue of thought that leads to exciting possibilities you would not have considered otherwise.

So even using the term “doing nothing” can be relative. What if your “nothing” leads to a new chapter in your life? We would call that an investment of time in your future and that is certainly a good thing, yes?

Why Do People Avoid Going to the Doctor?

Whether you are the type of person who is casual about their health or the type who is hyper vigilant, the vast majority of us see our general practitioner at least once a year for a physical. Sometimes we have to go more often than that because of an illness or unexplained health condition. However, you will occasionally run into people who brag about the fact that they never go to their doctor. Sometimes there is a legit reason for that; there are people who rarely ever get sick. But there are also others who do not go simply because they do not want to or they are afraid to. Here are some reasons why some folks do not go to the doctor:

Cost

Depending on which area where you live, and whether your job offers health insurance, you may have to pay out-of-pocket for a visit to the doctor. As sad as it sounds, and as important as a person’s health is, some people just do not have the money to spare for even one appointment.

Fear

Even if they can afford the appointment, some people fear that seeing the doctor will reveal they have a significant health problem. Some people would rather just not know, even though early detection of some problems can solve them. Of the two sexes, men are less likely to go to the doctor, even though they are historically known to be the braver gender. Also, people with vices that tend to cause health issues, such as smoking and alcoholism, are less likely to see a physician.

A different relationship with physicians

In years past, many people had a family doctor that they went to for generations. That sort of relationship is rare nowadays, and as a result, the same level of trust is no longer there.

 

How to Make Productive Use of Spare Time

 

Many of us do not have a lot of spare time in our lives, but there always seem to be things that need our attention. Since science has not figured out a way to clone people, we will have to figure out how we can do everything that needs doing, despite being only one person.

We don’t have a full answer for that question, but you can always try to make better use of the time you do have available. Here are some suggestions on how to do this:

Make a List and Check It Twice

Always having trouble keeping track of what you want to be doing? Use some of your downtime to create a comprehensive list and also make note of when you think you might be free to work on these issues.

Clean Up Your Desktop

This can be your computer desktop or your actual desktop. Either way, life is simpler and more productive when things are neatly organized and easily accessed.

Turn Off Your Phone

This can be your cellphone or a landline. Sometimes we need time to ourselves with no interruptions. Unless the building is burning down, everything else can wait for a bit.

Update Your LinkedIn Profile

Even if you are not currently looking for a new job, it never hurts to keep your LinkedIn profile updated. That goes double for your résumé and list of references.

Clear Out Those Emails

We all have messy email inboxes that never seem to get cleaned up. It ain’t glamorous, but here is your chance to bring a little order to electronic chaos.

Go for a Walk

Most people don’t get enough exercise in their lives and going for a walk at least 30 minutes per day can make a major difference in your health, especially if you have a sedentary job.

Benefits of Prefabricated Homes

Building a home is a monumental time in anyone’s life—especially if it just so happens to be your first home after renting for a long time. Building your own home provides a lot of choice, opportunity, and personalization, which can not only become overwhelming emotionally, but also costly to your wallet. This is often where beautiful prefabricated homes come into play. Lets review some of their significant benefits now:

Impact on the Environment

When you have a prefabricated home, both during construction as well as after, you can reap the rewards from a lessened impact on the environment. The fact that they are prefabricated means there is far less material waste, which means less strain on landfills and the overall environment. In addition, you can actually have prefabricated green homes in some cases, which means you can reap the rewards long after the home is finished and you are living in it.

Reliable Construction Schedule

Royal Homes are Ontario home builders, and with their expertise comes the significant benefit of a reliable construction schedule for all prefabricated homes. Since their homes are constructed in a facility rather than on the land, they are able to avoid delays from inclement weather, season changes, et cetera. Thus, workers can continue building even with a thunderstorm raging on outside. Not only will this provide a far more accurate idea of when the house will be ready to live in, but it also leads into the third benefit in this article.

Affordable Construction Costs

Building a home can get very expensive when you consider delays in construction, unforeseen material costs, et cetera. This is not the case with prefabricated homes. As you know from the previous benefit, prefabricated homes come with a reliable construction schedule free from the common delays due to weather and seasonal changes. Thus, you know you won’t have to wait and pay for things during a delay: there won’t be one in the first place.

You will also know all of the material needed for each prefabricated home, since they are based on templates. This means a dramatic reduction in unforeseen material requirements.