October 29, 2010

Tokyo Dome City

Back from a week in Tokyo, I plan to do a few posts on the show I was fortunate enough to design the lighting for, the venue, and other interesting things I saw in Japan.

The Tokyo Dome is in the heart of Tokyo and its big, pillowy roof can clearly be seen from space. It can seat about 50,000 people inside, which would only be a small portion of the 12.8 million populating the city.

I had a great view of Tokyo Dome City from the 24th floor of the Tokyo Dome Hotel, and when the sun went down, the lights from the amusement park lit up, flickered and changed colors. The trussing surrounding the outside roofing is beautiful and the triangular tile work on the floor extends into the amusement park area for acres.

Looking at the Google map, it occurs to me that they should take advantage of that big inflated roof and add some graphic symbol to it.  After all, most of Tokyo is a graphic overload to the eyes with the manga characters, bold colors and signage everywhere you look.

So maybe they should consider throwing an image of Hello Kitty or Doraemon or Godzilla up there.  Or maybe since the Dome itself is a symbol of Japan, it would be a perfect background for a "wa" character, since it's also symbolic of Japan...  Hey, I'm just sayin'...

There's a sense of place you get when you find yourself standing next to a famous object or in a famous location.  It's the type of feeling you might get as you're gazing across the Grand Canyon, or climbing the steps of the Capitol in Washington DC, or sipping a mocha latte in a Times Square coffee shop.  Having found my way to the hotel's 3rd floor breakfast buffet, I enjoyed this lovely view of the humongus Dome while eating raw fish with my eggs.

From the pictures you can see the Ferris wheel and the roller coaster. But notice that the Ferris wheel does not have spokes. And the roller coaster runs around the mall, pops through a hole in the building and then, as the track turns completely sideways, it goes through the center of the Ferris wheel.  The terrified rider's screaming was heard throughout the park every time it ran.

There's also a bowling alley, horse racing, a water slide, towers as high as 80 meters that you drop from, and a slew of more kiddie rides. I got another shot of a carousel horse, though I'm not sure why I'm drawn to them.

And I love this shot of the kid in mid air, who is playing where water squirts up from the ground at random moments and a mist pours up from beneath their feet, which just makes them want to run around and risk getting wet. It made me wish I was a kid again.

More to come in the next post...

October 14, 2010

Artsy pics from the Big Island

I took a flight over to Hilo on the Big Island of Hawaii to do lighting for a show at the Performing Arts Center at the University of Hawaii, Hilo.  I got up at dawn because of the noise outside my hotel lanai.  At home on Maui all I can hear are the soothing ocean waves lapping the shore but now I was hearing hundreds of Coqui frogs, which have invaded the Big Island, peeping away loudly.  Still, I thought I was getting used to them.
But as the dawn broke, the minor birds began congregating in the trees with their on and off chirping. Turn up your sound to hear the video of them laughing and carousing like drunken chickens at 6am.

I went out for a walk and caught a glimpse of Hawaii's "Pride of America" cruise ship just pulling into the harbor. It was a peaceful scene. That sun reflection of the huge ship on the calm ocean caught my eye.

As I turned around I also noticed the big finned roots of this tree right there on the ocean's edge.

October 03, 2010


When a spammer invades a forum, somebody may point it out using one of these images or something similar, which lets everyone know there's a dirty low down spammin' skunk in their midst.

Well, I'm throwing a couple of my own out there for all to use since I keep seeing these same two over and over again.
Here's one to use when you catch a whiff of the stinking spammer.

And here's another that has Hillary Clinton ratting out that no-good spammin' scum!
Use 'em at will.