Thursday, February 24, 2011

Safety Demon

Keeping it safe is a priority. If you're not keeping it safe, it's possible to bike to where you're going, but it's better still to arrive intact.

Driven by the fact that it's tax season, I decided to take on some tasks that have needed doing for, oh about three months, ten days and counting. Some of these tasks include passing the driving exam (it's 36 questions! doesn't that seem excessive?!) for California and getting my library card. Sweet!

This weekend I took my bike helmet, a bike light, some red duct tape, and combined these objects in such a way that my helmet would have a light on top of it and I would be more visible to oncoming cars while biking. This is where the safety comes in! I feel much more visible with the light on my helmet!

I couldn't help but notice that since creating my light helmet, I've been getting glanced at a bit more while I am biking. A notable amount more. I almost feel like I should create a super hero suit to go along with the light helmet... instead I've settled on creating an alter-ego when I go biking with my light helmet. When I go biking now I am officially... LA Safety Demon!

In the morning I get to make fun statements like:

"Safety Demon is going to work now," while putting on my light helmet.

And at the end of the day Bill will say, "bike safe, Safety Demon," just before I leave work for the day.

One aspect of Safety Demon is that her voice is much louder than my own usually gets. "Watch out!" "Wait!" being screamed at cars as I'm biking, all part of the Safety Demon persona now.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Chicken art, part 2

Creating oddly shaped maps is much more interesting than sticking with a plain old rectangle.

As I mentioned in my last post, there is an artist called cache who creates art murals in LA that many times contain chickens.

The murals are rather bright and cheery and the chickens are cute. Sometimes these chickens can be found carrying signs, I agree with the slogan on every sign I've seen.

Yesterday I went out with my camera and visited some of these chicken mural sites. It was fun! I felt like I was getting to know the city better. At one mural I saw a little kid stop his dad so he could gape at the chickens. Priceless.

The chicken murals, or at least some of them, change over time. Some of the pictures I took don't match up with what can be found in google maps. This element of surprise added a bit more fun to visiting these murals.

After taking these photos and recording where they were taken, I made the map below - it's projected and everything! The purple stars reference places where a chicken mural resides. The stars do not reference what mural is found at that location, for the sake of a little mystery.

In at least some of these murals more than one artist, besides cache, contributed artwork - I think. I'm going to focus on the chickens rather than the artist. Once I locate and visit five more places that contain chicken artwork, I'm going to add these locations to a map and create a new chicken graphic.


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Chicken art

While walking around Angelino Heights one Saturday morning in November I came across a bug car with two chicken heads spray painted on it. I was struck by its beauteous, clean design so I whipped out my camera, stepped out on the street (I was safe!), and took a few pictures of it. Some time later I was talking with Bill about this graffiti and he mentioned that he heard from our friends that no one, and no one meaning not many people, knows who creates the chicken graffiti but that it is found mainly throughout the Echo Park and Silver Lake neighborhoods of LA.

"Hmm, it sounds like something I need to keep an eye out for," I said, and quickly forgot about the chicken art until recently.

In the past week or two while driving on Sunset Blvd I have spotted some chicken murals and they made me really happy. Internet searching today told me the artist's tag? name is Cache.

Where is all this leading?

A new, awesome map project of course! Stay tuned until Sunday.