Data + Design Project

Flying Over Southern New Zealand Feels Like a Beautiful Thrill Ride

Thursday 01.22.2015 , Posted by
Toia helicopter tour of NZ

Southern New Zealand is known for its exceedingly beautiful and rugged landscape, and this video from Australia-based director Mark Toia shows it from its best angle – above. The video captures a landscape pushed upward by the slow but powerful force of shifting tectonic plates. From those snowy mountain heights, water flows into perfectly translucent lakes, making its way downhill in a series of precipitous drops. It’s these stomach clenching heights that are captured over and over in this video, highlighting a collection of ‘aerial rushes’ produced as part of a TV commercial project. [Read more…]


Illusions in the Sand: 3D Beach Art from Jamie Harkins

Monday 05.05.2014 , Posted by
Jamie Harkins Sand Illusions 1

Sometimes all you need to create magic are a few sticks, a bit of talent and a beach. When he’s not making music or painting, New Zealander Jamie Harkins is drawing fantastic 3D illusions in the sand with the help of his friends. Their anamorphic drawings feature M.C. Escher like stairways, skate parks, ocean scenes and more, and are only complete when someone poses on the beach to make the illusion real. [Read more…]


Awakening: New Zealand’s Changing Light Captured in Timelapse

Sunday 05.04.2014 , Posted by
Awakening New Zealand

Martin Heck spent 4 months traveling through the stunning landscapes of New Zealand and capturing it in timelapses that pay tribute to the unique light of the far south. He spent the nights under the stars, capturing the sky as sweeping points of light. By day he hiked through the mountains, explored remote roads and captured the ever changing weather as it played off the rugged landscape. If you were already craving a visit New Zealand, this will tickle that itch like never before. [Read more…]


Daniel and the Amazing Technicolor Igloo: A DIY Guide

Tuesday 01.08.2013 , Posted by

Technicolor Igloo 1

Meeting your partner’s parents can be scary. Lots of questions to make sure you’re good enough for their child, little tests to discover your weaknesses, etc. But for New Zealander Daniel Gray, his engineering expertise was put to the test with a project thoroughly thought out by his girlfriend’s mother who they were visiting in Edmonton, Canada for the holidays. The mother, Brigid Burton, did not want Dan to be bored during the visit, so she began creating colorful ice blocks made by freezing water and food coloring in recycled milk cartons long before the couple arrived. She challenged Gray to create a rainbow igloo, thinking it would be an impossible task, and in exchange she would grant him permission to marry her daughter, Kathleen Starrie. [Read more…]


Dance-o-Mat: A Coin Operated, Instant Dance Party

Wednesday 12.05.2012 , Posted by

After Christchurch, New Zealand was hit with last years massive earthquake, many of the local dance studios and performance places shut down. The people over at Gap Filler wanted to help the situation and add a bit of happiness back to the stricken city, so they did the obvious thing… and installed a coin operated dance floor for impromptu booty shaking. [Read more…]


Handcrafted Typography of Colorful Stitches

Thursday 06.07.2012 , Posted by

When it comes to modern typography, perfection is almost always the modus operandi. So, what happens when you add handcraft to this near linear equation? The result is not perfect, but instead highly pleasing and even rejuvenating. Graphic Design student Briar Mark recently experimented with creating embroidered sayings on paper for her final project towards a Bachelor degree at AUT University in Auckland, New Zealand. Spending a fantastic amount of time piercing her paper canvas and then stitching her works, she most recently created a piece which reads I Could Have Done This On My Mac… true words when you consider that each of the letters took approximately 30 minutes to stitch, equaling a total creation time of about 37.5 hours when you consider the tri-colored, offset printing effect. [Read more…]


Richard Simmons at 30,000ft

Sunday 04.29.2012 , Posted by


The Kiwis have been getting more and more attention over the years. Lord of the Rings was filmed on their island, the Flight of the Concords enlightened us to the nuances of New Zealand culture, and over the years the islands to the South have continued as one of the top tourist destinations in the world. So for those considering a flight down to explore the islands, Air New Zealand has made the experience lighthearted like much of their culture is. The new safety videos for the planes have been reworked to give passengers a laugh instead of a snooze when watching the required safety briefing before the flight.

[Read more…]


Busy Auckland Transport Visualized on a Monday

Saturday 12.03.2011 , Posted by

As Chris McDowall rode the Auckland Public Transportation system in his home of New Zealand, he often imagined how all the busses, trains and ferries would appear carving their daily path from above. He would try to visualize the varied trajectories of each vehicle as they zig-zagged through the complex network… and it’s no surprise that he admits, “after a few moments I would get hopelessly overwhelmed and go back to reading my book.” Thankfully for McDowall and the rest of us, Auckland Transport published its Google Transit Feed data to MAXX, giving all the information needed to create an animated visualization of the network over a typical busy Monday. [Read more…]


Spooky Architecture Photography

Monday 12.20.2010 , Posted by


With the collapse of cities like Detroit and towns like Cairo comes an abundance of abandoned architecture. Crumbling facades, smashed windows, and graffitied walls evoke haunting feelings as they cause us to wonder about the lives that used to dwell there. [Read more…]