@joseharriaga

Shintaro Ohata (born in Hiroshima, 1975) is a very talented artist. I admire him because he truly appreciates the little things in everyday life. As a result, his artwork is an authentic depiction of the unfathomable magic that perpetually exists around us: on a table at a fast-food restaurant, in the middle of a big city crossroad during a rainy day, spinning around a carousel at night, and waiting at an old metro station. There’s drama and romance hidden within the ordinary.

Ohata is well known for his characteristic style: placing sculptures in front of paintings and presenting them as one single work, thus revealing an intersecting point between the 2-D and the 3-D worlds.

Doce surpresa (“Sweet surprise” in portuguese) is a one-minute short produced by SQMA Film Delivery for Nokia. Interestingly enough, even though the purpose of the video is to serve as a marketing tool for the Nokia Lumia series, not a single phone is shown at all. This short takes the ”Amazing Everyday” theme and follows a style similar to that of “The Little Amazing Show” ads I’ve shown you before. As such, the video highlights the bonds between people and how the simplest of things can make your day.

I particularly like the song that plays on this video. Unfortunately, it was specifically composed for it, so we don’t get anything else than those sixty seconds. By the way, I’d deeply appreciate it if anyone could help me figuring out the lyrics. I tried to do it myself, but my French is a little bit rusty, so I’m not even sure if what I think I have is actually correct.

Même si on ne comprends pas
la vie * à la fois.
Même si la porte est fermée,
moi, je suis a tes côtés.

Et si tu voudras cacher
la tristesse qui t’a trouvé,
j’inventerai n’importe quoi
pour te voir sourire d’autres fois.

Nos coeurs séparés *

The Little Amazing Show, Episode 6: India.

This is the last episode and it’s about personality and how you can make your everyday more amazing by putting a little bit of yourself into it. It’s about doing things your own way and spicing everything up the way you like it. In some sense, it means forgetting about other people’s rules and doing only what you want to do and how you want to do it. All in all: you’ll make your own day more amazing, because you’re an amazing person.

TODAY, live it your way.

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Episode 1: Berlin. [link]
Episode 2: London. [link]
Episode 3: Madrid. [link]
Episode 4: Night. [link]
Episode 5: Paris. [link]

The Little Amazing Show, Episode 5: Paris.

I’ve been absent a little bit lately; thing is: I’ve been working intensely in a personal project which is almost completed by now but still is requiring a lot of a attention. Is this what parents feel when their kid is getting ready to leave for college?

Anyway, I’ll still bring you this week’s episode: number five, which is about happiness. And well, that’s not precisely a way to make your everyday more amazing, but a metric to know how amazing your everyday actually is. The morale of the story is, if you do things based on how happy they make you, your day will be much better. (duh!)

But remember: happiness is shareable, so never keep it to yourself. For instance, I hope I made you slightly happier today by sharing this awesome video with you.

TODAY, don’t worry, be Huggies. (8) I mean, happy.

Oh, and on a side note, it feels kind of nice to understand what these guys are saying even without reading the subtitles. I hope to find more motivation to polish my French, though.

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Episode 1: Berlin. [link]
Episode 2: London. [link]
Episode 3: Madrid. [link]
Episode 4: Night. [link]

The Little Amazing Show, Episode 4: Night.

This fourth episode is about taking the leap, or in other words, doing the stuff that you’ve always wanted to do but have never done for whatever reason. The thing is, it’s never too complicated and you’re never too busy to go for it. This episode is an invitation for you to do something new and give it a go. Chances are you’ll learn something cool out of it, so what are you waiting for?

TONIGHT, keep busy.

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Episode 1: Berlin. [link]
Episode 2: London. [link]
Episode 3: Madrid. [link]

The Little Amazing Show, Episode 3: Madrid.

This one’s really cool because of two main reasons: 1) it takes place in Spain and Spain means Spanish and Spanish is awesome, but more importantly 2) it’s about relationships and how these are yet another way to make your everyday more amazing.

It doesn’t really need much explanation: friends, family, lovers and even complete strangers, they all make your routine less of an actual routine by driving you away from it and into their own lives, voluntarily or not. But not only that; they are also the perfect solution to make your not-so-amazing problems a little bit less of nuisance. In fact, I want to imagine that finding a partner is like finding someone to play co-op through life, which I’m sure is something certainly amazing.

TODAY, find your partner! ‘could be great.

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Episode 1: Berlin. [link]
Episode 2: London. [link]
Episode 4: Night. [link]

The Little Amazing Show, Episode 2: London.

Another easy way to make your everyday more amazing is by playing a little bit from time to time.

Truth is: one of the biggest drawbacks of growing up is that life tends to become so busy and complex that most people usually have little time left to actually enjoy the ride. They forget about everything except their daily tasks. Hence, a successful day for them is finishing today’s whole to-do list, and the biggest joy is maybe even being able to start crossing out tomorrow’s duties too. 

Well, that’s very unfortunate and sad! But that’s why this second episode of The Little Amazing Show is about childhood. It’s about playing just for the sake of having fun. Butand this is importantthat does not mean partying hard, getting drunk, hitting on beautiful people, etc. No. It’s okay if you like that, but the fun you’re missing is something more innocent. To make your day more amazing you have to be more curious; you have to let things happen differently; you have to improvise and get rid of your schedule; it’s about fooling around and enjoying when things don’t go according to the plan as much you enjoy when they do. Personally, learning this took me much more time and was actually much more painful than what I would have liked to. Even now, I still have some trouble giving myself some time to play, but I think I’m getting better at it.

Now, who feels like giving me hand to build a seesaw-controlled light show like the one in the video? You gotta admit it is, indeed, amazing.

TODAY, don’t forget to play and keep in mind that the more you look like a little kid, the better.

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Episode 1: Berlin. [link]
Episode 3: Madrid. [link]
Episode 4: Night. [link]

I saw these pictures for the first time back in 2007, but I’m still in love with the concept today. It comes from a small design company called nendo that was created in 2002. They have an incredibly extensive gallery of design works that includes everything you can think of, e.g. speakers, sundials, piggy-banks, chairs, shelves and much more.

Quite ordinary, you say? Well, that’s the catch. If you take a look at their gallery, you’ll be surprised by how this company takes the most common items of our everyday lives and twists them a little bit to turn them into something truly amazing. I mean, just look at the pictures: that is chocolate, those are pencils, and suddenly we now have chocolate pencils! (Ironically, that’s essentially two of my biggest passions combined). And yes, a similar idea characterizes all of this company’s works.

Still not convinced? Well, take a look at the nendo’s watchword. It’s all about…

Giving people a small ” ! ” moment.
There are so many small ” ! ” moments hidden in our everyday.

But we don’t recognize them.
and even when we do recognize them,we tend to unconsciously reset our minds and forget what we’ve seen.

But we believe these small ” ! ” moments are what make our days so
interesting, so rich.

That’s why we want to reconstitute the everyday by collecting and
reshaping them into something that’s easy to understand.

We’d like the people who’ve encountered nendo’s designs to feel these small ” ! ” moments intuitively.

That’s nendo’s job.

Beautiful. 

And here comes my personal opinion. Those who know me are aware that I’m quite passionate about design. That’s actually because I truly believe that design is the key to make everything in our lives more enjoyable. For instance, as a software developer I might develop tools to help you deal more easily with your everyday jobs, however, only good design, when applied to these tools, can turn those tasks into a true “!” moment for you. My statement is: it’s not about getting the job done; it’s about helping you enjoy doing it. Consequently, I sympathize with nendo’s motto and I really wish more companies would live up to it. If that were the case, our everyday life would be something totally different.

Anyway, I’ll invite you now to go through the source link below and learn more about this amazing company by looking at their complete gallery.

The Little Amazing Show, Episode 1: Berlin.

What do you need to make your everyday more amazing?

As surprising as it may sound for some people, sometimes “little ideas” are all what it takes. After all, you don’t need to give your life a 180 degree turn to get out of your daily routine and, in fact, all you have to do is think a little bit differently than how you usually do. In any case, here’s a bunch of ideas that can help you get started. This first episode is about spontaneity.

Did you get it? Now, go ahead and make your everyday more amazing, one little idea at a time.

Oh, and by the way, make sure to share them with me later.

TODAY, be spontaneous.

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Episode 2: London. [link]
Episode 3: Madrid. [link]
Episode 4: Night. [link]

Every. Single. Morning.