The Bike Chain Chandeliers of Carolina Fontoura Alzaga

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Artist Carolina Fontoura Alzaga uses old bike parts, like metal chains, to create one-of-a-kind steampunk chandeliers.

Inspired by Victorian chandeliers, DIY culture and bikes, the bike chain chandeliers start out as unartistic, due to the nature of the materials used, but end up as genuine works of steampunk art, fit as decorations for the equally awesome steampunk house.

Combining the elegance of the classic Victorian candelabrum with the elegance of discarded mechanical bike parts, Carolina Fontoura Alzaga’s bike chandeliers are both an example of original art, as well as upcycling done right.

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Welsh Artist Paints with Jam and Marmite on Toast

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Nathan Wyburn, a young Welsh artist from Ebbw Vale, has created a series of celebrity portraits with jam and marmite, on a canvas made of toast.

The first time you lay eyes on Nathan Wyburn’s artworks, you don’t know whether to frame it or eat it. But, even though his art mediums might seem a bit weird, 20-year-old Nathan is an established artist, with a worldwide online following. Uploaded videos of his work have been watched by millions of people and made Nathan Wyburn somewhat of an Internet celebrity.

Some of Nathan’s past projects include a portrait of Simon Cowell made of 30 pieces of Marmite-covered toast, and Lady Gaga in sugar. His latest works were commissioned  by a new Costa Coffee shop, in Towcester, and feature the portraits of international celebrities David Beckham and Cheryl Cole, painted on toast.

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Phaal Curry Challenge – Curry with a Side of Pain

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Brick Lane Curry House, a restaurant in New York city, challenges people to try and down a whole bowl of the world’s hottest curry, in their now famous Phaal Curry Challenge.

Phaal curry is reputed as the world’s spiciest curry, and the restaurant’s website describes it as an excruciatingly hot curry, more pain and sweat than flavor”, but that’s just what draws people to the Brick Lane Curry House. People like to prove to themselves and others that they can do incredible things, and eating a whole serving of Phaal curry is pretty incredible. Just so you can get an idea of how hot this Indian concoction really is, you should know the chef cooks it with a gas-mask on, to protect himself from the fumes, and tastes it with his eyes closed.

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Quilling – The Art of Turning Paper Strips into Intricate Artworks

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Quilling has been around for hundreds of years, but it’s still as impressive and popular now as it was during the Renaissance.

The art of quilling first became popular during the Renaissance, when nuns and monks would use it to roll gold-gilded paper and decorate religious objects, as an alternative to the expensive gold filigree. Later, during the 18th and 19th centuries, it became a favorite pass-time of English ladies who created wonderful decorations for their furniture and candles, through quilling.

Basically, the quilling process consists of cutting strips of paper, and rolling them with a special tool. It sounds simple enough, but special skill is required to create more advanced shapes like marquises, arrowheads or holly leaves. All through the years, the art of quilling has remained almost unchanged, but new specialty supplies now allow quilling masters to create anything from detailed 3-D figures to wall-sized museum installations.

Because it requires so few supplies, quilling is available to anyone with enough patience to give it a try, and with a little bit of practice you’ll be creating some pretty amazing paper artworks, just like iron-maiden-art, whose works I think show the beauty of quilling.

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The Collage Paintings of Megan Coyle

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Using only paper and magazine strips, artist Megan Coyle manages to create unique collages that look and feel like real paintings.

Washington-based Megan Coyle is a college artist and designer who creates beautiful artworks with magazine strips. Using her experience as a painter and writing, Megan managed to “become a storyteller with images where I illustrate narrative scenes from everyday life.” The way she cuts and glues the magazine strips hints at the distinct brushstrokes she once used in her painting.

Artist statement:

Although I was trained in painting, over the years, I was consistently drawn to collage. I believe that my attachment to the medium is rooted in the way I approach every subject as an artist. I’m constantly breaking down what I see into smaller pieces, piecing together each area bit by bit, occasionally stepping back to see the work in its entirety.

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Guliver Travels to China

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After entertaining children everywhere, with his incredible adventures in Lilliput, Gulliver seems to have moved to Beijing, China.

Walking by Gulliver, in Chaoyang Park, Beijing, people really feel like Lilliputians. And that’s not odd at all, considering our hero’s body is 70 meters long, the equivalent of a 20-story high building. Certified by the Guinness Book of Records as the tallest inflatable statue in the world, Gulliver is actually a traveling museum that educated children on the workings of the human body. Once inside Gulliver, kids can walk by his beating heart, see his lungs inflate with air, or get lost in his large intestine, which is laid out like a maze.

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Headis – Table Tennis Played with the Head

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A hybrid of football and table tennis, headis is a fun, easy-to-play sport that’s becoming more and more popular with each passing day.

As you probably already guessed, headis is pretty similar to table tennis, only you have to hit the ball with your head. All you need to play headis is a regular tennis table and a special rubber ball with special bouncing properties, and that is probably the main reason why the sport is played by more people every day.

Headis was invented in 2006, by René Wegner, a sports science student at the University of Saarbruecker, in Germany. Because the football field was occupied, Wegner started hitting a football back and forth on a tennis table, with a fellow student. That’s when he got the idea for a new sport that soon spread throughout Germany.

While it may seem very similar to table tennis, headis is actually more comparable to badminton. Since players have to get behind and underneath the ball, they workout all parts of the body, at all times.

 

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Ziggy the Painting Pekingese

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Ziggy, a fluffy Pekingese dog, has taken the art world by storm, ever since his owner discovered his incredible talent for abstract painting.

Elizabeth Moncelli says her beloved Ziggy took up painting soon after he was old enough to hold a brush  between his teeth. Seeing he had a soft  spot for the arts, she encouraged him to use a brush, by attaching it to a paper roller which the dog bites on. Ziggy’s abstract paintings aren’t praised only by his owner, but also by her neighbors in Fallbrook, California, who spend up to $250 for one of his masterpieces.

But like all artists, Ziggy is pretty moody. He only picks up the brush when he is in the right frame of mind, and even then, he only paints for two minutes at most. These short bursts of artistic inspiration apparently take all the dog’s energy, so he usually takes a nap or starts looking for snacks after every painting session. That’s why Ziggy takes days, sometimes weeks to finish one of his paintings.

One of the most talented painters of the animal kingdom, Ziggy the Pekingese is an established artist.

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Pixelated Princess Peach Built Out of Plastic Bottle Caps

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A real Super Mario fan spent months collecting plastic bottle caps in order to build a pixelated portrait of the lovely Princess Peach.

After saving her from the clutches of the evil dragon, several times, Instructables user skeplin decided to create a tribute to Princess Peach. With the help of his family, he managed to collect around 1,000 plastic bottle caps, in a few months time. His children were in charge of washing them, while skeplin prepared the 26 colors needed to complete the project.

He used a little bit of Perl and ImageMagick to figure out all the colors, then hand-painted every bottle cap using a dowel rod. Once that was done, he set and glued the bottle caps in place, on a 28×35 grid, and completed a lovely pixelated portrait of Princess Peach that now hangs proudly in his home.

It all sounds easy enough, but once youc check out all the steps, on Instructables, you’ll think twince before having a go at it, yourself. Video at the bottom.

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Environmentalist Builds Floating Island with 100,000 Plastic Bottles

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Eco-pioneer Richard “Rishi” Sowa designed and built an artificial island kept afloat by 100,000 plastic bottles.

Spiral Island II is actually Rishi Sowa’s second artificial island. He built the first one in 1998, near Puerto Aventuras, using 250,000 plastic bottles to keep it afloat. Sadly, his recycled island was destroyed in 2005, when Hurricane Emily passed through the area. Most of Spiral Island was washed up on the beach, but Sowa decided to build a whole new island, in a safer area.

And that’s how Spiral Island II came to be. With the help of volunteers, Rishi Sowa gathered around 100,000 plastic bottles and hand-built his second recycled island, in a lagoon that offers protection from bad weather. The new island features a house, beaches, 2 ponds and a solar-powered waterfall, but its creator says Spiral Island II is and always will be an eco-work-in-progress. Although smaller than its predecessor (only 20 meters in diameter), you can expect the new Spiral Island to increase in size, significantly.

One of the most impressive DIY projects ever attempted, Spiral Island has inspired volunteers to come to Mexico and help Rishi Sowa improve his creation. But while some believe it a perfect environmental design, built entirely of recycled materials, there is some controversy surrounding Spiral Island. There are those who believe that if the island gets destroyed by a hurricane, again, the materials used to build it (mainly plastic bottles, sand, mangrove plants) will litter the waters of the Atlantic.

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Book Desk Is the Perfect Piece of Library Furniture

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I don’t know no one has ever thought about making a desk out of recycled books, before, but having one in a library seems natural enough. The lovely book desk you see below is located in the TU Delft architecture bibliotheek, which is a library in the Dutch city of Delft. Made of what looks like thousands of recycled books, this incredible looking desk stays true to its origins as well as its purpose.

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Belarus Hosts Phone Throwing Championship

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Hundreds of odd sports fans gathered in Minsk, Belarus, for the 8th edition of the country’s Cell-phone Throwing Championship.

It may not be the only competition of its kind in the world, but the phone throwing championship of Belarus is definitely the most important, at least for Belorussians. They take so much interest in this wacky event that they actually film and televise it.

The 8th edition of the Cell-phone Throwing Championship took place last Saturday, and consisted of several phone throwing events, including long distance throwing and precision tossing, where contestants had to throw their mobile devices into plastic buckets. Throwers received scores from a group of judges, and although prizes were not revealed, I’m pretty sure winners got a new phone.

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New York Restaurant Will Deep Fry Anything You Want

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I love fat, deep fried food just as much as everyone else, but deep fried macaroni and cheese, or Twinkies? Why not!

The Park Slope Chip Shop, a Brooklin take-away restaurant ran by a British couple, has made a name for itself by promising to deep fry anything you want. The restaurant opened back in 2001, when its owners, Chris Sell and Suzanne Hackett, missed their native British delicacies, and decided to introduce New York to good ol’ English batter. The deep frying madness began at a restaurant staff party, where they deep fried a Mars bar. It was delicious, so they tried the process with other foods, and added them to the menu.

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The Turf-Covered Houses of Norway

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Norway, like all Scandinavian countries, has always taken pride in trying to live in harmony with nature, instead of conquering it, and its old turf roofs are a perfect example.

Houses with their roofs looking like small meadows may seem a little strange in these modern times, but until the late 19th century, turf roofs were the most common type of roofs in rural Norway. Nowadays, inhabited turf-roof houses are very rare, as the Norwegians have turned most of them into museum exhibits.

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Caboodle Ranch – A Cat-Sized Haven for Homeless Cats

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Caboodle Ranch is an impressive sanctuary for cats built by Craig Grant, a man who actually doesn’t like cats.

The story of Caboodle Ranch began when Craig’s son moved out, leaving his cat Pepper behind. Just when he was getting used to taking care of an animal he didn’t really want around the house, Craig found out Pepper was pregnant. Before long he was stuck with another five kittens. As they grew, neighbors started complaining about so many animals living in their building, and cats were even shot at with B.B. guns.

Although he’s not what you’d call a cat lover, Craig went out of his way to protect his cats, traveling 100 miles  from his Jacksonville home, to inspect a tree farm. The moment he saw it, Craig knew it was the perfect sanctuary for his purring pets, so he immediately bought 30 acres of land. He soon built an office trailer complete with small doors and padded shelves, for comfortable cat naps.

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