Two weeks ago I went with my friends from the Dutch Climbing Association for a bivouac weekend in the Ardennes in Belgium. Houfallize was the place to be and so we decided to meet up in a local pub from where we walked together to our first resting place in the forest. Weather was mild but wet, just like last year. It must have been an eight degrees Celsius and nights around freezing temperatures.
We had to walk for an hour or so before we could all chose our own space to spend the night. As I had only a bivy sac with me I was searching for the tree with the biggest crown to give me shelter during the night and protect me against rain. This meant I had to sleep a bit upwards as the ground wasn’t flat at all.
Every hour I woke up and turned a bit to find the best spot and felt asleep again. In the morning you always have the ritual of starting the stove to boil water for breakfast and whilst it is doing so you will pack your stuff so after breakfast you can start your day. As we had to do a 35km trip on Saturday with a 15kg backpack this means with an average of 3km per hour that you have to move for at least 12hours without breaks. That is a pretty long day. Most of it is off road and in this season the rivers mostly are over the banks and paths so you have to find your way on a map with coordinates and a compass.
During the day you are full of excitement as there are so many obstacles to overcome and so many times you think; why I am doing this? You know that the night will be cold and wet with less sleep than is good for you after such a long day walk!
When I arrived back home Sunday evening everything was crossing my mind again and a few things came up. There is a mental and a physical element in bringing yourself out of your comfort zone. From the applicants there is always a percentage canceling their trip for many good reasons. Mostly it is not the real reason why people giving up on themselves. It is hard, it is not comfortable and warm at most of the time but just by setting that one step before the next is the start of a new adventure. Any adventure big or small, in cities or in nature.
The physical element is mostly direct linked to the mental state. When we are young we learn to cycle and then when it rains and is cold we still need to cycle because our parents say so. When you are getting older and deciding for yourself suddenly life becomes easier as you are making the calls. Many of us, trying to walk the easy less steep route through life. The route that is not giving you that extra when you succeed but lets you be average. Most of us don’t see the parental strength anymore that we sometimes just need, to do and believe in the outcome and feeling a little of pain. We lost our inner strengths and trust that we can survive on our own with that extra glory moments that come along with it. No matter what choice you make in life, what walk you walk as long as you do it hand in hand with nature you will be surprised about the outcome!
Just before the start of the COP21, 600 anti-advertisement posters have been placed in public outdoor spaces through the streets of Paris. Over 80 artists, from 19 different countries were involved. Joe Elan from Brandalism: “By sponsoring the climate talks, major polluters such as Air France an GD-Suez-Engine can promote themselves as part of the solution – when actually they are part of the problem.” It all started in 2008 when two friends started to reclaim billboards in London. They were tired of the visual pollution that stems from large public advertisements.
The Brandalism artwork illustrates the connection among advertising, marketing, consumerism, fossil-fuel dependency and climate change.
Where the Tides Ebb and Flow
Land art project “Where the Tides Ebb and Flow” is all about raising awareness for global sea level rise. The artwork is located at Montsouris Park in Paris. The artist Edro Mazorati placed 30 sculptures of blue men in water that appear slowly rise up and then sink down again. The artwork was first introduced in 2008 at an Art Festival in the Netherlands. Since 2008 it has been moved to raise awareness all over the world.
A sea of footwear, from high heels and flip flops to sportive sneakers and outdoor boots standing at the Place de la Republic in Paris. With the state of emergency making it impossible to demonstrate, the protesters used the empty shoes as a personification. More than 20.000 shoes were placed. This made a strong impact on the worldwide audience (picked up by many broadcasters), maybe even more than if there had been protesters.
Artist brings icebergs to Paris
Olafur Eliasson brought 12 large blocks, from the Nuuk fjord in Greenland to the middle of Paris. By displacing the ice, the obvious result is that it melts. The huge blocks are a visual reminder of the change climate happening now, at this instant… and that we are creating irregularities on earth. The artist said: “The ice we are going to put in Paris is a tenth of what melts in a second in the Greenland summer.
1 Heart 1 Tree
This artwork is transforming the Eiffel tower into virtual forests with light. People all over the world, will have the opportunity to give life to a virtual tree. After downloading the smart phone app, you can participate in this collective project. You place a finger on the sensor to record the rhythm of your heartbeat; which grows a unique tree on the Eiffel tower. For each virtual tree, a real tree will be planted in one of the 7 reforestation programs over the world.
These are just a few of the inspiring and creative art projects, presented in Paris.
Want to see more art projects, join them or make one here
Art activism is just one of the many ways to let people look at the cause with new eyes. But it’s also important to taking up real space and real time, attaching the cause to real faces and real voices who care enough about the cause to go out there in a public protest.
Art may often used as a medium to express extreme impulse into simplistic flares, but I believe it intended to have a small part in a beneficial purpose. Considering, those ghostly shoes and billboards are not an individual wave. They have a collective spirit and that unity; the small suggestion, hidden within each, that is what can work towards collective goals. Protests are not persuasive themselves but they invite persuasion, they invite change.
If we continue like this, by the end of the century a global warming of 2 to 4 degrees Celsius will be inevitable. This comes with huge effects for our livelihoods. Imagine the effects only for the Netherlands, which lays for a large part 5 or more metres below sea level. We are the first generation who can experience the climate change, and we are the generation who can do something about it before it’s too late.
From an economy on fossil fuels we need a transition to an economy that runs on 100% sustainable energy. Thankfully, many people are aware and working towards a more sustainable future. We have to experiment and create new solutions. The Netherlands is about to become the first circular hotspot, with many experiments to close the loop and have as minimal impact as possible. The Dutch have proven ability to overcome challenges in the areas of water and agriculture. Last week Vitens won the Circular Icon Price 2015, as a great example for innovation and collaboration. The prize is yearly awarded to innovating projects that demonstrated how Circular Netherlands can look like. The Vitens Project shows how waste streams coming from the water purification, can be used as valuable raw materials. The use of these residues helps the sustainability of the water sector and the agricultural sector with great benefits for the quality of water, farmer and also for the water company.
Already ten years ago DUTCH PICTURE INDUSTRY felt the need to show what is already practiced as sustainable solutions. In our TV series Going South cycling the Americas we inspired our audience with eye opening ideas and simple yet remarkable initiatives taken by businesses, non-governmental organizations and individuals in our society. Going South, meets several categories of sustainability, from condom trees and ceramic water purification to green parenting and a rent-a-bike-plan in Mexico city. It’s all in the series. Take a look at the projects at the website
Within our productions we give the solutions to climate change a face. Who are the hard working people? What do they do, where do they believe in? We keep spreading awareness and keep the motivated people close to our productions. We believe global warming can be stopped by all of us, together. Now let’s go and safe the world!
Today is Green Screen Day on IDFA. Thomas Rau, architect and innovation specialist will give a free lecture. See the full program here.
November 29th is the World Climate March. This year it’s going to be huge! We encourage everyone around the world to join and raise his or her voices!
Do you have any tips to make this world more circular? Please share your thoughts in the comments!
When the bodies were found, they discovered Scott’s diary. In the diary he described harrowing experiences during the last weeks. He described the fight against the extreme weather conditions and the lack of food and fuel. He knew they would die. The last words written were: “For God’s sake look after our people.” This was an SOS message to the world to take the right turn before it’s too late.
The importance of expeditions tend to be forgotten but there are still important polar expeditions undertaken, even in our current time. In May 2015 two experienced Dutch polar explorers went on expedition in the Arctic, Phillip de Roo en Marc Cornelissen. Their aim: to do research on the ice conditions. Exploring the effects of climate change on our Arctic.
The first days, the harsh Arctic conditions made it hard to do what they came for, but after some days the weather cleared up and everything went smooth. Then fate struck unexpectedly, Marc sank through the thin ice and Philip tried to help him and got into the freezing water himself. Leaving their third companion, Kimnik, the sledge dog alone on the ice. Remains were the footsteps and the sledges with all the measurements and results of the research.
We consider Marc and Philip as heroes, because the pushed the boundaries of what was possible because they cared so much about the Arctic, and about the earth. With their research they took their responsibility to help to protect what is so precious to us.
We commemorate them as lifesavers, driven to create a better the world. They are a personal inspiration to us by their power and courage, with a common grateful goal. We have to build further on the things they have accomplished and left behind. All together, everywhere and every time.
When you are fighting for something, you care so much about. You mostly want direct results. But making progress never comes easy. From the moment it becomes a personal goal. Let’s say it becomes your ‘why’ in life, it becomes very powerful. Follow your dreams, day by day to make this a better world and do it with a smile on your face.
If you want to go fast, go alone! If you want to go far, let’s go together.
The media industry is always looking for innovation, and highly invested in 3d but with Virtual Reality (VR) a new spectrum is opening up. Until now VR never appealed to the mainstream, it was just for some weird geeks – but that is finally about to change. It appears that in 2015 virtual reality finally starts taking root in mainstream culture. Today the Dutch VR Days start in Amsterdam. Four days long, the Vondel CS building in Amsterdam is transformed into a Virtual Reality playground. To experience it yourself have a look or buy your own glasses at the HEMA for only 15euros and enter the Virtual World . We can state that VR is going to hit the market – and our living room. Strange Days are here!
Some innovative brands already explored what VR can contribute to their marketing.
Patron Tequila invites consumers to virtually step inside the bottling process with “Art of Patron Virtual Experience”. With the VR experience you have the point of view, of a pollinating bee. Flying across flower fields. You experience all the production elements, harvesting, bottling and aging.
Also Peugeot has launched a film-meets-game VR experience. In this VR experience, you make a test drive through the mountains in the South of France, and as if that is not hard enough there is also a dragon hunting you. It’s up to you to drive – and to catch the dragon.
For us as a creative media production company it is important to incorporate this current innovation within our productions. We can’t be more exited about the developments we are making towards our first VR documentary series. And as a pilot VR project we use the worlds first, true adventure documentary; 4 peaks in 4 weeks. In this story you become a team member next to adventurer Noel Hanna in his expedition in the Himalaya’s. To join him summit four of the highest peaks in only four weeks time. While sitting comfortably and warm in your lazy chair.
Imagine; looking around and see huge mountains covered in snow dwarfing you. You can hear the wind coming up, climbing small ledges. On your left, there is an enormous gap of more then 2000meter, you can feel the depth. Stay focused, look carefully where you put your crampons. There is nothing in this world that will be the same after you have witnessed the top of the world! And we can’t wait to give you that unique experience. We expect to launch a Kickstarter campaign early next year for this mind-blowing VR series.
If you could choose a VR experience, what would you like to experience?
Marketing professionals are adopting this philosophy. Take an example from Johnnie Walker, the whiskey brand. Their campaign “Keep Walking” ran for over 16 years, and was born out of the universal idea of personal ‘progress’. The new tag line, “Joy Will Take You Further. Keep walking.” moves the creative concept more in the direction of experiencing joy and happiness. They show this in an amazing short film. Guy Escolme, global brand director: “The new campaign, is meant to convey the idea that if you start from a place of happiness, optimism and joy, it is a big accelerator of people’s progress and success in their lives.” It’s all about bringing joy in to the world.
In Beyond Marketing, there was an inspiring story of RICOH and the relationship with the human instead of the wallet. Ricoh works with the philosophy: “the spirit of three loves”. They explain the meaning of that interesting philosophy: Love for your neighbor, respect the other like yourself, love your country, which means that they handle our Earth carefully and love the work, which let you express who you are and what difference you want to create. So instead of focusing on their high level of technology and innovation, their brand story is about people. People making the difference.
We find it inspiring to see how companies adopt positive branding methods and brand stories, to communicate their product. Marketing is affecting the way we live and see the world, we are happy to see that it is sometimes more than just about selling more products. Happy customers are happy people and vice versa. So if you want to connect to your audience, your customer: communicate by making an honest connection. And that starts with being happy. We started to think ourselves happy, and begun to spread this concept in our creative work.
We made an INSPIRE film about Happiness:
Take a look on our YouTube Channel for more INSPIRE films.
We strongly believe that this gorgeous planet we live on, should be cherished and fiercely protected by each and every one of us. Of course one single day isn’t enough, to have an impact. But we believe, that even that one day is worth something. At least we are moving in the right direction.
During our productions we use our ‘green policy’ to implement our sustainable vision. This policy sets a few simple, sustainable rules: from separating waste, organic catering, recycling and the use of public transport to using an eco-font in all documents. These rules become habits and the habits become routine, now we have habits that routinely helping the planet we live on.
Our short film ‘Balance’ is our proof that quality and green productions can go hand in hand. ‘Balance’ won the second prize in the Green filmmaking Competition in 2012 and was officially selected as the Dutch submission for the Oscars.
What do you have planned for the Day of Sustainability?
Inspiration can be hidden in simple things. What may give you inspiration is very personal. It can be a photograph, a painting, a music score, or in my case a simple thought. But to share these elements are very important as it may inspire others as well, that is why I like to push this door and let all inspiration flow in. This inspiration feeds our personal magic; it’s our sixth sense. It exists as an energy that lives inside us. Every thought we have creates an energy flow around our physical being. Let it be positive; you would be amazed how powerful positivism can be.
That doesn’t mean that setback and slumps don’t exist. Some are deeper than others. You may feel like losing motivation to accomplish your dream. These are the moments that inspiration is essential, to get you through the hour, the week or even a difficult month. Inspiration is creating an overview perspective, the broader picture and to forget our little troubles.
For these moments in life, we want to share OUR inspirations, the big ones and the small ones. The things that make us flow and speeds up our heart beat. Every Monday we upload an “inspire video”. It’s in our eyes the receipt of good inspiration. Each video has the ingredients: beautiful quote, unique footage and sparkly music. In only 30 sec, we take you out of the slump in our world of inspiration. We do this for one year, and who knows what we do after that? We also have a huge database of incredible pictures, taken around the world. Why not share this beauty? Look at them as treats.
We want to connect as many people as possible to share positive inspiration and help each other out.
We hope that this blog inspires you to set sail on creative and fun adventures each day, and that you return again to share your experiences with us.
What inspires you lately?
International Dot Day is a global celebration of thousands of people around the world joins together in a celebration of creativity, courage and collaboration. The story began on 15th September 2009, when Teacher Terry Shay brought Peter H. Reynold’s book “The Dot” into his classroom to share it’s story with the children. Not knowing that it would move so many people, that it grew out to a international celebration.
The Dot is a beautiful story of a caring teacher who dares a student, who doubted her ability to be creative, to trust in herself. The teacher asked her to be brave enough to “make her mark”. It all begins with a simple dot on a piece of paper what develops into a journey of self-discovery and sharing. The dot is now a symbol of inspiration for children and adults around the world to do the same. The story pictures an image in order to reach people’s hearts.
We think the dot moves the world to a better place. Sometimes all that people need is a spark or cheer to be happy and do great things. The message of this story can touch people’s soul and emotion. We are definitely touched, moved, by the story of the dot. What about you?
Believe in yourself and make your mark today! Use all your social media to share the magic: #DotDay, #Makeyourmark.
This beautiful short film uses the animations of the book to tell the touching story.