English Artist Creates Detailed Button Mosaics

English artist Ann Carrington uses hundreds, sometimes thousands of everyday objects to create awe-inspiring mosaics.

Not everyone looks at buttons, safety pins or metal coins and sees art, but for Ann Carrington, “all objects are saturated with cultural meaning. Mundane objects like knives, gloves, shoes, shells and tin cans come with their own ready-made histories.” Whenever she decides on what material she’s going to use for a certain work, there’s a certain reason for her choice. For example, her Pearly Queens series made with buttons was inspired by the Pearly Queens and Kings fashion movement, in London, while her bluejeans-made flag of America is a homage to this iconic American symbol.

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Share a Table with Your Pooch at Deco’s Dog Café

Animal cafes, places where you can enjoy a nice drink surrounded by animals, have become really popular in Asia, but Deco’s Dog Cafe takes things to a whole new level by allowing pet owners to share a gourmet meal with their pooches.

Even if they don’t have the time or space to take care of a pet, people seem to enjoy spending time around animals, so cat cafes, dog cafes, and even reptile cafes have become popular venues in Asia. But when Hideko Notani opened Deco’s Dog Cafe, in 2001, she wanted to create more than just a place where people could relax surrounded by pooches. She envisioned a cafe where dogs would be in charge instead of their owners, where they would be treated to gourmet meals very similar to those eaten by their human masters. The special menu includes human and canine versions of fine dishes like cabbage rolls, sweet potato scones and chicken pie, but  no one’s stopping owners from sharing the food with their dogs.

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Old Chinese Man Moves Objects with Qi (Chi) Energy

A video of an 84-year-old man who appears to be moving objects with only his internal energy has become viral in China. The man also slices his stomach with a cleaver but remains unscathed.

The power of Qi is often demonstrated in various styles of Chinese martial arts most often practiced by Buddhist monks. You’ve probably seen those Shaolin shows where they make their bodies immovable or unraisable, and even immune to the sharp tip of a spear, but an 84-year-old man from China takes things to a whole new level. He claims he can channel his inner Qi (Chi) to move and even break various objects. To prove his ability he allowed a camera crew to record several of his feats, including moving bricks and a bowl full of water and breaking a glass bottle. The video of him performing these extraordinary stunts has been doing the rounds for about two years, but so far no one has been able to explain just how he’s doing it.

 

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Robin Eley’s Incredible Hyper-Realistic Paintings

There’s no way to tell, but you’re actually not looking at a photograph, but a hyper-realistic painting by London-born artist Robin Eley. Armed with a simple paintbrush he’s able to create photo-quality works of art that draw attention instantly.

Born in London, raised in Australia and educated in the United States, Robin Eley is a man of three continents. But more impressive than his life’s story and journey are his amazing hyper-realistic works. Most of the subjects depicted in his large-scale oil paintings are naked and wrapped in plastic foil, with each tiny detail of their bodies and countless reflection of their translucent covers expertly depicted by the artist. “Inspired by history, I extract from the present. Artifacts and textures that reflect the beauty and nobility of decline and question the modern obsession with perfection. While my subjects and technique are intentionally very real, the context in which they are painted is less defined, Eley says about his art.

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Hygiene-Obsessed Woman Washed Her Hands 300 Times a Day

40-year-old Julia Abdullah, from Malaysia, was obsessed with her self-cleaning rituals. Her bizarre behavior started 20 years ago, but it gradually got worse to the point where she was washing her hands up to 300 times a day, spending 5 hours in the shower and shampooing her hair 25 times per day.

Julia first noticed something was amiss two decades ago. She was working as a laboratory technician, and often handled urine and stool culture samples, as well as blood samples for HIV tests. She started spending increasingly more time on washing her hands, for fear of contamination, and although she suspected she had developed OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), she didn’t seek help. “I thought I could will myself off the washing,” Julia remembers, but her condition only got worse. She eventually lost her job as her obsession caused her to be constantly late for work, and needed to find other ways to pay her rapidly increasing house utility bills. At one point the  woman became so desperate that she started scavenging through her neighbors’ trash looking for stuff she could sell. In a short period of time she amassed a collection of junk that occupied the two-room flat she shared with her mom. The hoarding got so bad that her mother had to sleep at the stairwell as there was no ventilation or natural light in the flat. “It finally got too much for me to bear. I got so angry that I stopped bathing for three months,” Ms Julia told the Malaysia Chronicle, but her obsessive-washing habits were hardly cured.

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Anatomically-Correct Cake Shop Will Kill Your Appetite

You hungry but there’s nothing in the fridge to munch on? Don’t freak out, just take a look at the “treats” offered by this anatomically-correct cake shop and you’ll probably lose your appetite for a while.

Miss Cakehead, the creative director who previously brought us the decadent Bloody Human Heart cupcakes and the Human Meat Shop, has now found a new way to shock her fans – an anatomically-correct cake shop featuring all kinds of sick treats, from STD cupcakes and infected toenail cookies to carbuncle bars that will put your stomach to the test. She’s basically inviting bakers to come up with the most gruesome treats they can and showcasing them in various locations across the UK, as well as online on her Eat Your Heart Out blog. The Evil Cake Shop is described as “a the place that allows your imagination to plumb the depths of deviance and soar to the highest ecstasies of bad-taste and good-flavor.”

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Competitive Horseless Horse Jumping Is Just What the Name Suggests

It’s run just like a regular horse jumping show, only in horseless horse jumping it’s the humans who have to make it through the obstacle course without knocking down too many hurdles.

If you’ve always dreamed of imitating a 1,000-pound horse in front of a live audience, there’s no better way to do it than signing up for a horseless horse jumping event. As wacky as it sounds, this kind of show is becoming increasingly popular, with numerous equestrian contests featuring the event on their schedule. Around 20 horseless shows are organized every year in Europe, Central America, USA and Canada, with the number of contestants ranging from 40 to 130. Some of the participants have been training for this kind of contests since early childhood, using a broom as a horse and jumping over sticks in an improvised course, and I guess they never got over it. Others are just looking to have some fun, and everyone of them agrees it’s a very pleasant activity to take part in. Impersonating a show jumping course is for a good cause, as JustWorld International, the nonprofit organization who stages these events, donates all the proceeds to fund projects for poor children around the world.

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Taiwan’s Carton Restaurant, Where Everything Except the Food Is Made from Cardboard

Located inside the Carton King Creativity Park, in Taichung City, Taiwan, the Carton Restaurant is a unique eatery where everything from the furnishings, to the decorations and even the plates are made from corrugated cardboard.

Unless you’ve actually been to Taichung, I assure you haven’t seen anything like the Carton King Restaurant before. Except for the food, the waiters and some cutlery, everything inside this place is made from cardboard and paper. It seems almost impossible, but you actually sit on cardboard chairs, sip drinks from cardboard cans, and eat your food out of cardboard bowls at a cardboard table. The food is pretty average, according to the reviews I’ve read, a bit on the pricey side, but that’s to be expected considering the amazing venue it’s served in. What’s great about this place is the recycling potential. In case anything breaks or becomes damaged, it’s simply recycled. That was actually the point of the whole Carton King Creativity Park, to show the real power of paper and cardboard, and convince people it can be used for a lot more than generic packaging.

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Japanese Robo-Fish Looks and Acts Like the Real Thing, Needs No Maintenance

Fish are regarded as the most low maintenance of pets, but even they need a minimum degree of care, like making sure they’re fed every day and cleaning their tank from time to time. But the Robo-Fish invented by Japanese company Takara Tomy A.R.T.S. makes having a pet fish a carefree job.

Robo-Fish are not only meant to look like real exotic fish, but they also act like them when powered on. They scour the bottom of their tank as if they’re looking for food, and rise to the surface looking for floating bits of food. The only thing that gives them away as robotic fish is a small gap between their tail and the rest of the body, but other than that they look and move like the real deal. People too busy to even throw their live fish some food every once in a while need only go to Amazon and spend $37 for one Robo-Fish. The worst that can happen is the robotic fish runs out of battery, but that’s easily fixable.

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Russian Artist Creates Amazing Straw Paintings

Irina Parosova, a self-taught artist from the Russian city of Syzran, creates mind-blowing artworks from straw. Work on just one of these masterpieces can take from one day to a whole month, depending on the complexity of the project.

Straw is usually defined as an agricultural byproduct that is mostly used for livestock bedding and fodder, thatching and basket making. But for Russian artist Irina Parosova straw is a complex artistic medium that can be turned into amazing artworks. The self-taught master started making straw art as a child, in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. She was 11 years old when her geography teacher came back from a holiday and brought them a photo album as a souvenir. But it wasn’t the photos that caught Irina’s attention, but the straw-inlaid cover of the album. She went home, climbed to the attic of her house where some straw-filled mattresses were stored, pulled out a few pieces of straw and started replicating the photo of a ballerina she found in an old magazine. It wasn’t her best work, but at that age she already thought of it as a masterpiece. But then she abandoned straw for the next 21 years. it was only after the birth of her second child that she rediscovered this amazing art form, when she used it to provide for her family. Her Russian husband had problems with the Uzbek language and couldn’t find a job, so she had to use her artistic skills to feed her children. Her straw art helped them overcome the financial crisis and since then Irina Parosova has become an acclaimed Russian artist.

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University Graduate Lands Job as Human Scarecrow

It’s not the kind of job students dream of during university years, but for 22-year-old Jamie Fox being a human scarecrow in a rape field really is a great gig. It gives him the chance to sit down, read a book and even improve his ukelele-playing skills.

Jamie graduated from Bangor University this summer, with a degree in music and English, but until he finds a job he likes in the music business, he’s more than happy to put on a bright orange suit and play a scarecrow in a rape field, in Norfolk, England. “The farmer said to me, ‘Bring a deckchair and a good book’,” Mr. Fox says, and that’s exactly what he did. Now he just enjoys the peace and quiet, and the fresh air while catching up on some reading, listening to podcasts and playing the ukelele during his daily 8-hour shifts. “I get to sit and read for a lot of the time but whenever I see the partridges, I have to get up and scare them off,” the young man said. “A couple of my friends in busier, more generously-paid jobs, are slightly envious.” And for good reason, who wouldn’t want to earn £250 ($400) a week just sitting around in the great outdoors?

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Indian Food Lover Feeds Family Curry Every Day for a Whole Year

During the last year, 47-year-old Dan Toombs, better known by his online alias, The Curry Guy, has cooked 365 different kinds of Indian curry dishes for him and his family.

After spending a fortune on takeaway Indian food, North-Yorkshire-based businessman Dan Toombs decided it would be cheaper and healthier if he did the cooking himself. So he set himself the challenge of making a curry dish for his family every day for an entire year. He even set up a blog documenting the experiment,posting photos and recipes of everything he prepared in the kitchen. “The children took a while to get used to Indian food every day but grew to love it. On Christmas Day I put Indian spices under the skin of the turkey and cooked it with Bombay potatoes and a broccoli curry. It was a great success and the turkey leftovers lasted for days,”. Toombs said. In the beginning, he used curry cookbooks to get the dishes just right, but he was disappointed with the results, and noticed traditional Indian food was very different than takeaway versions. So The Curry Guy started cooking takeaway food in the comfort of his own home.

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High-Tech Jacket Gives You a Hug Every Time Someone Likes You on Facebook

Created by MIT student Melissa Chow, the “like-a-hug” jacket makes virtual experiences a bit more realistic, by inflating and giving you a hug whenever someone likes you on Facebook. Soon, real friends will probably be obsolete.

Having people like you on Facebook is nice, but don’t you wish you could feel the love whenever they hit that “Like” button? Well, thanks to the innovative “like-a-hug” jacket, now you can. Inventor Melissa Chow, from the  Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), says it “allows us to feel the warmth, encouragement, support, or love that we feel when we receive hugs”. The concept behind this Facebook jacket is fairly simple – air pockets inside the jacket inflate every time your smartphone sends a signal that a new “like”has been received. Better still, you can send hugs back to your friend by simply squeezing the jacket and deflating it.

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New York artist Paints with His Own Blood

In order to better “dissolve the barrier between art and artist”, New York-based artist Vincent Castiglia uses his own blood as a medium for his disturbing paintings. Throughout his artistic career, he has used around 12 pints of blood. “My work is literally a blood sacrifice on the altar of art,”the painter says.

While many artists claim a lot of sweat, blood and tears go into their art, Vince Castiglia is serious about the blood part. During the last 10 years, the painter from Hell’s Kitchen, New York, has been using his own blood as material for his art. In a recent interview, Castiglia said he was first inspired to use the bizarre art medium by a need to connect to his work “on the most intimate level.” It just so happens that human blood contains iron oxide, a pigment found in many traditional paints, as well as in iron ore and common rust. The 30-year-old begins his artistic process by drawing pen or graphite sketches on a white canvas, before proceeding to extract the “paint”, in the privacy of his own studio. Then he dilutes the blood and uses paintbrushes to create creepy reddish characters with twisted limbs, or in different stages of decay.

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Ultimate Slobs? Japanese Women Wear Diapers to Avoid Going to the Toilet

Weird as it may seem, there are people out there who would rather wear an uncomfortable diaper all day long than go to the bathroom. Japanese media reports adult diapers are increasingly popular among Japanese women who say wearing them saves them a lot of time.

In an article titled “The Ultimate Form of Slob“, Japanese magazine SPA describes the hottest trend in the Land of the Rising Sun. No, it’s not the brainwave-operated tail for humans, that’s still just a prototype, but something way more disturbing. The masculinization of women has become a very popular topic in Japan, as statistics say more and more females don’t clean their rooms as often as they used to, leave their underwear all over the place and don’t even bother to remove unwanted bodily hair, but one magazine seems to have identified the ultimate slobs – women who wear diapers to avoid using the toilet. They even interviewed one such girl, 25-year-old Kaori Adachi (pseudonym), who works in a Tokyo real-estate agency. For the last six months she has been wearing diapers to work almost every day, instead of using sanitary tissues after using the restroom. And she doesn’t mean panty liners to prevent leakage, but actual diapers that absorb all the urine, and save her the trouble of going to the bathroom.

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