Weekly design inspiration: Frogs

Weekly design inspiration: Frogs

After showing off our sporty sides with last weeks football-themed inspiration, this week we’ve turned our creative sights to the amphibian world, and found our favourite frog-inspired pieces. Now, the thought of frogs made a few of the team rather squeamish, but it didn’t stop us from finding some great pieces of creative inspiration. Let’s jump straight in and check out what we’ve found…

Got milk? Kermit and Miss Piggy Shadow Casting Panels

We’re kicking things off with a very clever piece of artwork by Swiss team Drzach & Suchy. These guys used their own specially designed shadow casting panels (SCP’s) to create a five-panel, hybrid image of both Kermit and Miss Piggy. They started by building blocks of coloured, transparent film, which when black-lit, shine red, yellow, green and black. The artists then filled a shallow shadow box with a very generous serving of milk to obscure the panel’s grid. Finally, they exposed the SCP’s to varying levels of illumination, and hybrid images of the Muppet Show and Sesame Street appearConfused? Watch the video.

Kermit and Miss Piggy shadow art via the creators project

Mr Jeremy Fisher sketch

Everyone loves Beatrix Potter, and we thought this Mr Jeremy Fisher sketch by Will Petrey was very well done and particularly cute! This sketch is inspired by Beatrix Potter’s naturalist illustrations for ‘A Frog he would a-fishing go’. We think Jeremy looks like a real gentleman in his fine jacket and pumps, sitting neatly on a water lily leaf. Shame he’s having a bit of a nightmare fishing on this occasion.

 

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Mr Jeremy Fisher sketch via Behance

Frog bodypainting

Next up, we’ve got something a little bit different. This is a picture of a tropical frog sitting on a leaf right? Wrong! Johannes Stötter has painted this lifelike tropical tree frog masterpiece using the bodies of five people. Creepy or not, it’s quite an impressive illusion and we had fun identifying what body parts were which. Stötter is an artist, musician and fine-art body painter and spends up to five months planning and perfecting each one of his works! How many bodies can you see in this image?

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Frog bodypainting 

Crazy monster frogs

Next up, we have set of monster frog illustrations for an animated poster featured in Earth Touch’s ‘Crazy Monster Frogs’ documentary. We thought these illustrations were very cool and appreciated all the colours and techniques used to create the little fellas. Though, we hope we don’t bump into any of these scary looking amphibians on our travels, eek!

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Crazy Monster Frogs via Behance

Living frog sculpture

Don’t worry, it’s not an actual living frog. These pieces were created in Canada by the International Mosaiculture of Montreal for the largest living plant culture exhibition in the United States. The art form, known as mosaiculture, is created by using steel or aluminum forms wrapped in metal mesh, which are then filled with earth and planted with flowers, ivies and grasses whose foliage provides texture and colour for these magnificent sculptures. Here’s a couple of our favourites from the impressive exhibition.

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Living sculptures via My Modern Met

Drop back in next Friday for more inspiration from our creative team. Leave us a comment and let us know your thoughts. If you’ve found something you think we’ve missed, let us know! Missed last weeks football-themed inspiration? Check it out here.

Head on over to our new Design & Publishing home page and don’t forget to check out our Adobe Creative Cloud hub for resources, and updates on all your favourite Adobe apps. For all the latest news and tips follow us on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Parallels Desktop 11 has launched for Mac

Parallels Desktop 11 has launched for Mac

Parallels, the software program that enables users to run Windows on their Mac is getting another upgrade. However this year, along with bringing Windows 10 support and other enhanced features to your Mac, Parallels has for the first time introduced a Windows feature of its own: Parallels 11 has the ability to put Microsoft Cortana right on your OS X desktop.

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All-new features and support

Parallels desktop mode has made running Windows and other operating systems their Mac possible for years. The new version however, boasts all-round better software and new features, including…

New! It can launch and shut down Windows around 50 percent faster than the last version.

New! ‘Travel mode’ allows for a quarter better battery life than previous versions. You can set travel mode to automatically turn on at a certain battery percentage threshold or just set manually.

New! 20 percent faster file operations.

New! Parallel 11 supports Windows 10 and is ready for OS X El Capitan.

New! Microsoft’s digital personal assistant Cortona on your OS X desktop. Cortana works seamlessly, even on Mac, allowing you to summon Microsoft’s virtual assistant by simply saying ‘Hey Cortana’.

How can I upgrade?

Upgrading to Parallels 11 from versions 9 or 10 will only cost you only £34.99. If you are a new user of Parallels, it will cost you £64.99. And, if you want to get more out of your Windows virtual machine, there’s a special pro edition which integrates with Docker, Visual Studio and other developer tools. This Pro version will cost you £69.99 new or £34.99 for an upgrade. You can buy the latest version of Parallels for your Mac over on our website here.

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Want to know more about how you can run Windows on your Mac? Give our team a call on 03332 409 306 or email business@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news and tips, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

 

Blackmagic drops the price on its 4K and HD Studio Cameras!

Blackmagic drops the price on its 4K and HD Studio Cameras!

Blackmagic Design’s Studio Camera is well known for being amongst the best bunch of live production cameras. So, we were delighted when we heard that Blackmagic has announced price cuts for both the HD Studio Camera and the Studio Camera 4K models.

Both Studio Cameras still come with all the great specifications, but Blackmagic listened to feedback and now customers get the choice of buying either model with or without the expensive optical fibre connection option. Whatever the reason for the price drop, you can now buy the Studio HD Camera for £1083.67, a huge saving of over £190! (Studio Camera 4K is available to pre-order now, too!)

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What is the Blackmagic Studio Camera?

Studio Camera HD is built and designed for the studio. Features such as its large 10″ viewfinder, Micro Four Third lens mount, talkback, tally, and now user-installed optical fibre make it one of the most advanced broadcast cameras for live production. Inside, incredibly tough, lightweight magnesium alloy body, Blackmagic have packed all the built-in features you need for multi-camera production and broadcast.

It supports the tally SDI standard used on the ATEM range of live production switchers, and tally lights illuminate automatically on both the back and front of the camera, making it easy for cast and crew to see which cameras are on air. To top it off, its four hour battery gives you enough power for use on long live productions.

Key Features

– High resolution 1920×1080 sensor in HD model and Ultra HD sized sensor in 4K model.

– Built-in large 10 inch super bright wide viewing angle LCD viewfinder with sun shade.

– Optical SMPTE-compatible SFP optical fiber socket allowing user installed optical fiber.

– 3G-SDI on HD model for up to 1080p60 and 12G-SDI on 4K model for up to 2160p60.

– Compatible with other mounts via common third party adaptors such as B4 broadcast lens mount.

– Built-in, two way digital quality talkback using high quality affordable general aviation headsets.

– Features all standard connections, including dual XLR balanced mic/line audio in with switchable phantom power, headphone and microphone jack for talkback, LANC remote control and standard 4 pin XLR broadcast standard DC 12V power connection.

– Supports 23.98, 24, 25, 29.97, 30 and up to 60 fps in HD model, up to 60 fps in 4K model.

– Compatible with ATEM range of live production switchers.

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You can buy Blackmagic Studio Camera HD and Studio Camera 4K Ultra HD over on our website. Alternatively, give our sales team a call and we’ll handle it for you.

Want to know more about Blackmagic Design? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

 

Weekly design inspiration: Football

Weekly design inspiration: Football

This week we’ve been collecting design inspiration from the beautiful game, football. Our top five pieces were quite a varied bunch, and included Game of Thrones inspired football kits, striking images of the most obscure places for football pitches and illustrations of footballers with utterly bizarre proportions…

Champions League 2015 highlights

First up, Italian motion designer Emanuele Colombo brings us a bunch of satirical gifs illustrating some of the best moments and highlights from the 2015 Champions League. Created for an EPSN project, we liked how these gifs told a little story and thought they were rather amusing! We also admired the likeness to the players – great work!

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ESPN Champions League highlights via Behance

Game of Thrones house football kits

Next up, we’ve been looking at these Nike concept football kits, designed in the style and colour of the many houses from Game of Thrones. If you don’t watch the programme, you probably won’t appreciate why these are so cool but we hope you can at least admire the epic colour combinations and styles that Nerea Palacios has put together. Check out the stag horns around the neck of House Baratheon’s shirt!

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Game of Thrones World Cup Nike concept kits via Behance

Footballer illustrations

At first glance, these ‘Play!’ sketches are quite strange looking – we had a bit of a giggle about this footballer with one giant leg! For this project, the images started out as sketches and then the artist added colour digitally to the drawings to match the team’s official outfit colours. Looking again at Antonio Rodriques’ illustrations, we think this is a really original piece of work and love that it gives the feeling that the subjects could come to life. Check out the blog to see how these illustrations started from simple sketches and further developed.

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Play! via Behance

ESPN’s take on managing in the Premier League

Our next pick comes from ESPN. This collection of animated gifs is similar in style to the Champions League gifs we metioned above, but here ESPN present to us the difficulties of managing in the Premier League for the coming 2015/2016 season. Again, we like what the creator has done with these, even if they are a bit Americanised, they’re still quite funny. Who doesn’t like taking the mickey out of our much loved managers? Nice apron, Steve.

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Animated gifs via ESPN

Weird, whacky, and wonderful football pitches

Last but not least we have a bunch of striking images of football pitches in strange locations across the world. This was our design inspiration winner this week. Our jaws dropped at the stunning scenery surrounding some of these pitches! A couple of our favourites were the floating pitch in southern Thailand and the seemingly desolate and abandoned desert pitch near Agdz, Morocco. Imagine playing a game of footy on top of a sky scraper in Tokyo! Madness.

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The world’s most amazing football pitches via The Guardian

Missed last weeks superhero-themed design inspiration article? It was a goodun. Check it out here.

Drop back in next Friday for more inspiration from our creative team. Leave us a comment and let us know your thoughts. If you’ve found something you think we’ve missed, let us know!

Head on over to our new Design & Publishing home page and don’t forget to check out our Adobe Creative Cloud hub for resources, and updates on all your favourite Adobe apps. For all the latest news and tips follow us on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Education app of the week: Padlet for iPad

Education app of the week: Padlet for iPad

The makers of collaborative web tool Padlet have just launched an app for iPad. Hurrah! We think Padlet is a great learning tool for the classroom, making it easier for students and educators to share ideas and learn in class. Let’s take a quick look…

What is Padlet?

Basically, Padlet is a virtual sheet of paper where users can share any content, on any topic, with anyone they like – and now, from your iPad. Padlet makes sharing and collaborating easier and simpler than ever. Users can add everything from images, to links, YouTube videos, files and even simple wall posts onto a Padlet, which can then be shared, meaning that users can connect and use it from just about anywhere, anytime! Now that Padlet has developed an iPad app (that’s free!), we think it would be a really great tool to use with students in class.

How can it be used in the classroom?

Padlet’s versatility means that it is brimming with uses that can revolutionise student learning both in and out of the classroom, and provide students with a dynamic, multi-channel learning experience. For example, Padlet can be used by teachers to bookmark, share and aggregate learning resources relevant for students’ learning. Posting them on the classroom wall enables students to access and engage with these resources on multiple devices. Another interactive way both teachers and students can use their classroom Padlet is as a brainstorming tool. Creating a Padlet wall for the whole class means students can collect and share ideas about a given topic, they can then use their class Padlet as a backchannel tool in class for sharing their reflections on what they have learned, raise questions, and ask about things they need help with.

What’s the best feature?

We especially liked how user-friendly the Padlet app is. The simple and minimalist Padlet interface allows users to get the hang of how to use Padlet very quickly and begin sharing and collaborating immediately. We also liked how you can customise your wall to look exactly how you want it. You can choose how posts appear on the wall, change privacy features allowing you to approve posts, decide who can see your wall and more!

Padlet for schools

Padlet also have a special subscription for schools called Padlet Backpack. This has all the great Padlet features but with Padlet Backpack, schools have more privacy, security, and montoring options, which is particularly important for an education environment. The special edition of Padlet Backpack is also useful for educators as it has administrator options and access control, allowing teachers to add and remove people from their school Padlet domain and also to give and revoke access.

Where can I get it?

The Padlet app is accessible to everyone and is completely free! You can download it from the App Store on your iPad, or by heading to iTunes. If you’d like to find out more about Padlet or Padlet Backpack for schools, get in touch with us!

Find out more about our favourite apps and Apple iPad for the classroom. Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 306, email education@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.

Upgrade to the Newtek TriCaster 8000 and save £6000!

Upgrade to the Newtek TriCaster 8000 and save £6000!

Anyone interested in getting their hands on NewTek’s most advanced and exciting media and broadcasting system will not want to miss this opportunity. For a limited time only, they’re offering you the chance to upgrade to TriCaster 8000 for the price of TriCaster 860, saving you at least £6000! Though you’ll need to hurry – this offer ends 30th September, 2015.

Unfortunately, all good things come to an end and TriCaster 8000 will go back to retailing at £25,499 ex VAT on 30th September, so the chance to upgrade now for £19,499 would be silly to miss. Who doesn’t want to save £6000?! 

What is TriCaster 8000?

The 8000 is a total, integrated production switcher, capable of recording eight channels into different codecs and, like all TriCasters, you can do this while simultaneously streaming to the web, hardware-keying into virtual TV studios, integrating into social media and outputting to local screens/signage. It boasts 24 channels, eight cameras, eight screen feeds, 1080p across the board, and an output of up to 14 channels simultaneously.

It’s perfect for any organisations – broadcast, corporate or education – who want to enhance their production capability, with multichannel recording, streaming, social media and sophisticated effects, at an incredible price point.

TriCaster 8000

Why should you upgrade to TriCaster 8000?

The 8000 supersedes the 860 by enabling you to create a complex effect, with numerous layers, effects and animations, then pipe that effect into another effects bus, were you can use the original setup to build upon and do it all again – very much like pre-comping in Adobe After Effects. It has eight of these re-entrant buses, meaning you can do this eight times, all while running live.

It’s also unique in offering real-time motion tracking, external router support (boosting the amount of your hardware inputs), along with fail-safe options, including system mirroring. A few of the other benefits NewTek tout include:

Turnkey Production. The 8000 uses a single system to broadcast, project, stream and record simultaneously. The system’s multiple turnkey functions replace the need for heaps and heaps of equipment.

Enterprise Integration. TriCaster 8000 supports a wide range of media formats and connectivity types. Router control also allows for more input capacity. It easily incorporates legacy hardware, and offers the potential for external control of almost anything in the switcher with API support.

Improved Scalability. The huge 24-channel Tricaster 8000 allows users to scale up and down to accommodate a variety of programs. Multi-camera production through external video routers also allow for a huge coverage.

Router Support. TriCaster’s expanded router support incorporates GNVP protocol, greatly increasing facility integration and effectively removing limits on the number of video sources users wish to bring into a program.

Mix-and-Match I/O. The 8000 has the connectivity to prepare for any location scenario. It allows users to connect up to eight cameras and mix and match connection types (including SDI, component, composite and Y/C).

24-channel Multi-Camera Production. Eight cameras in any HD and SD configuration, colour correction, keying, cropping, scaling, and frame sync on every input. Two digital media players for video clips, three slots for graphics, titles and sounds, and two network channels for sharing computer screens and displays from wireless iOS devices.

8-channel Multi-Format ISO Source Recording. TriCaster’s multi-track video recording technology (IsoCorder) captures incoming sources into the system, allowing you to save all your live footage and lots of video capture equipment.

TriCaster 8000 on Jigsaw24

You can buy your TriCaster 8000 on our website by clicking here. Alternatively, give our sales team a call and we will sort everything out for you! But remember, this offer ends 30th September.

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.