Archives: May 2018

Whigene Taylor is Mixing Art and Fabric

When one thinks of art, they often think of paintings or sculptures. They think of art greats such as Picasso and Michelangelo. They go to museums like the Louvre in Paris or the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. A new, local artist in Pensacola, FL is seeking to change art.

Whigene Taylor spent years struggling with a dark past. Several years ago, he decided to change his life and pursue his passions. He wanted to create art. Taylor thinks art can have multiple layers and has proven it. When you walk into his studio at First City Arts Center, you see the typical artist easel. But you also see items for sewing and colorful fabrics.

Taylor’s art is unique because he sews fabric straight into the canvas, making it a mixed paint and fabric media. Taylor enjoys making birds that come to life with a depth given them by the fabric used, and a beauty that is unreal. He also does hand carved prints that are amazing to see. Some of these prints have been put onto fabrics that make the design really pop! Many of the prints have a funk-pop theme, with a traditional Taylor twist.

Taylor also thinks that art can be worn every day. He has created beautiful clothing that is truly a work of art to wear. He coordinates unique colors and makes one of a kind items that are a perfect fit for a person’s style and body. He has created his own prints for t-shirts and is always chasing his next inspiration.

Taylor is even more inspiring because he has been pursuing this passion for art while working hard to get an education. Taylor is an artistic inspiration!

How Tony Stark Solidified the Marvel Universe

Ten years ago, the fledgling Marvel Studios decided to take a change at adapting one of their B-List heroes with an actor more famous at that time for his struggles with drug addiction than his filmography. It was a risk that ultimately paid as Iron Man became a box office hit, Robert Downey, Jr became of the biggest stars in the world, and Iron Man as a character became as popular a superhero (if not more) as Wolverine and Spider-Man. The movie also became a preliminary step towards a large, interconnected narrative known as the Marvel Cinematic Universe which became fully realized in 2012’s The Avengers and hit its next apex with the release of Avengers: Infinity War. Through Tony Stark, Marvel has become the most lucrative brand at the box office.

One way that the Armored Avenger might have accomplished that was by discarding a well-worn trope of the superhero mythos: the secret identity. While the character had traditionally kept his identity secret by posing as his own bodyguard, the cinematic Tony Stark decided instead to acknowledge he was Iron Man to press at the end of the first movie.

This set a tone for the Marvel movies. Thor paid lip service to the Donald Blake alias but ultimately did nothing with it. Throughout the movies, the entire world knows Steve Rogers is Captain America to the point of holding Smithsonian exhibits about it. Even the one hero whose identity must be secret– Spider-Man– gets outed to just about every important character by the end of his solo movie. This eliminated an urge to follow well-worn tropes already exhausted in previous superhero movies such as Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man movies.

On the other side of the tracks, DC films have not been quite so successful with the approach. The Superman of Man of Steel barely spends anytime in the traditional Clark Kent disguise and Ben Affleck’s Batman seems to out himself to just about anyone. As DC’s pantheon more heavily relies on the secret identity trope, their attempt to emulate the style has not been as cohesive.

Boyega Hints at “Star Wars” Time Skip

There may be some kind of time jump between the events of Star Wars: The Last Jedi and the upcoming Star Wars Episode 9, at least according to hints offered by John Boyega.

The actor, who plays Finn in the new movies, made his comments in an interview with Yahoo:

“I can’t wait to start shooting the next and final leg of the franchise,” he said. “The first step is growing out my hair, so you can wait for the trailer to see why.”

Obviously, a bit of time must pass in-universe for Finn’s hair to be noticeably longer. His comment about the trailer implies there may be even more to the story; will the jump be more than fans might have expected?

The Last Jedi took place immediately after the events of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but that was a break from the series’ usual practice; every other film had a time jump in between them, usually of only a few years within the same “trilogy,” and a whole generation from one trilogy to another.

Here, however, the time jump may have a greater purpose: allowing the moviemakers to deal with the untimely death of Carrie Fisher, who played Princess-turned-General Leia. Fisher died in late 2016, after having already finished filming for The Last Jedi, but that movie ends with her character still alive, and the creators have already clarified that they have no plans to recast her.

Presumably, Leia will be said to have died off-screen, and a bigger time skip will allow that to seem more natural. Alternatively, it could be used to explain her absence in another way if the powers that be wants to keep the character alive for later media in the Star Wars franchise.

Star Wars Episode 9 is currently unnamed, but is expected in theaters on Dec 20, 2019.

Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Expels Cosby and Polanski

In a move clearly meant to show solidarity against the rape culture in Hollywood, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has decided to remove both Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski from their ranks. Last week, Cosby had been found guilty of aggravated indecent assault following decades of rape allegations. Polanski has been a member of the Academy for decades in spite of the director’s self imposed exile from the United States to escape charges of raping a minor in the 70’s.

For a decade, Cosby had been plagued by whispers of “America’s Dad” drugging and raping multiple women for decades. Cosby had admitted to a pattern on drugging and sexually assaulting women during a deposition in 2005. Following a stand-up bit by Hannibal Burress that called Cosby’s misconduct out, momentum grew that culminated in Cosby’s trial for assaulting Andrea Constand in 2004. Cosby now faces prison time for up to 30 years.

The memberships of Cosby and Polanski had previously been decried as emblematic of the Academy’s ambivalence towards sexual misconduct in the film industry, especially seen in Polanski’s Best Director win at the 2003 Oscars. Whereas Cosby’s expulsion is rather timely, Polanski’s shows the Academy’s commitment to tackle Hollywood’s rape culture. Last October, the Academy had made the choice to excommunicate Harvey Weinstein whose decades of rape and sexual harassment against women in the industry became the tipping point towards battling rape in the film industry.

It remains to be seen whether more Hollywood figures under the cloud of sexual assault and harassment will be cut from the Academy. Weinstein, Cosby, and Polanski were not the only accused in the industry. Figures such as Woody Allen, Casey Affleck, and Kevin Spacey were also film giants exposed as predators and it remains to be seen whether they will face similar consequences. Nonetheless, the move to expel Cosby and Polanski shows the Academy’s willingness to take real steps towards battling rape culture in Hollywood.

Sir Paul McCartney Donates Family Photos To The V&A

The Victoria & Albert Museum in London has been the home to many pieces of pop culture memorabilia including a beloved exhibition of more than 400 objects associated with the life and work of iconic musician, actor, and writer, David Bowie. A new addition to the collection of the legendary museum is a series of never before seen photographs by the wife of The Beatles Sir Paul McCartney; Linda McCartney was well-known for her work as a musician and campaigner for animal rights but initially found fame as a photographer in the 1960s before meeting and marrying Sir Paul in 1967.

The Evening Standard reports the announcement of the 63 strong photographic donation will form part of the opening of the newly realized V&A Photography Centre which is due to open in October 2018 and will feature some of the most famous artists from the history of the genre.

Linda McCartney had already made her mark as a photographer in the 1960s before meeting her future husband in 1967 and marrying the bass player in 1969; McCartney’s place in the V&A Museum cements her legacy as a photographer following her 1967 win as the U.S. Female Photographer of the Year despite her lack of patience in completing formal photography classes. One of the main claims to fame of Linda McCartney was her record as the first woman to have photographed a “Rolling Stone” cover and later appear on the cover as a subject; in 1968, Linda McCartney shot a portrait of guitarist Eric Clapton for the cover of “Rolling Stone” and featured as a subject alongside Sir Paul as a member of Wings in 1974.

The 63 images donated to the V&A Museum by Sir Paul McCartney and his family include family snapshots and professional images produced in the 1960s when she was most active as a photographer. Linda McCartney died in 1998 following her diagnosis with breast cancer in 1995 with Sir Paul McCartney pledging to continue her work as an animal rights campaigner after her death.

Investing made simple by Agora

If you are anything like me, you love the thought of investing and having your money work for you. However, many people do not like the idea of this. They do not like the idea of putting their hard earned money on the line which is totally understandable. This is why Agora Financial can be so beneficial. At Agora, they have people who will help you reach your investing and financial goals. There are basics to investing that everybody looking to get into the markets must know. We are going to be going over these things in today’s article.

  1. Know your investment

The reason that most people fear investing is that they don’t really have a full understanding of what they are investing in. In other words, they are gambling in a way. Three rules that I go by are don’t invest in what you don’t understand, don’t invest based on other people’s opinions, and have a plan when it comes to your investment strategy. It really is that simple. You just have to find the vehicle that will help you grow your money. Also, set investment goals. Write down how much you want to invest in a given month, how much do you want that money to grow, and how are you going to grow it

  1. Control it

One of the biggest mistakes one could do is give up control over their hard earned money to some “adviser”. I’d recommend learning how to invest on your own whether that be in swing trading or just investing in good long-term growth stock mutual funds. You can open up your own brokerage account and it is very simple. You can go with a professional financial advisor if you want. Just do your due diligence before doing so.

  1. Grow it

Once you have found a strategy that works and fits into your lifestyle, stick with it. Whether it is putting money into a Roth IRA that will compound and grow tax-free or if it’s swing trading stocks, have a plan to grow your money. In the end, you’ll be thanking yourself once retirement comes along.

Autistic Children Are Able To Create Imaginary Companions

Creating friends can be quite easy for most people but not to children with autism. However, it has emerged that children with autism are endowed with some special skills that enable them to make imagery friends. When children suffering from autism play with imagery companions, they learn some important social skills such as being empathetic. It has been discovered that autistic children may not be able to create pretend play pals. This greatly hinders autistic children from developing emotional understanding. Nonetheless, a researcher from the University of Huddersfield has confirmed that autistic children do not only create imaginary companions, but they also learn to play with them. Further research is underway, and it is believed that it could come up with some other new therapies.

According to Dr. Paige Davis, a psychology lecturer at Huddersfield University, imaginary companions are among the great specialties. In his Journal of Autism and Development, Dr. Davis says it is just a small number of children suffering from autistic spectrum disorder that is able to create an imaginary companion. This is about 16.2 percent. Most children with autism started playing with their imagery companions at a later age. Moreover, such children are able to play with personified objects such as stuffed dolls and toys. Dr. Davis notes that the two categories of children have a quantitative difference on how their imaginary companions develop. However, he says the quality of their play is not different in any way.

Many autistic children are able to create imaginary companions when their parents are involved in the process. This could involve Ghosty Bubble. This is an invisible bubble person who sleeps on the bubble bed near the child. Other ghostly bubbles could include an invisible real school pal called Pretend Ada and an invisible sewer Ninja called Mikey. People have in the past believed that children with autism don’t imagine things the same way like the typically developing children. Dr. Davis, however, clarifies that the ability of these children with autistic spectrum disorder to create imaginary companions proves this belief wrong.

Cavill, Levi Honor Superman’s 80th Birthday

The DC Extended Universe actors Henry Cavill and Zachary Levi have both taken some time out to wish Superman a happy 80th birthday on Instagram.

Cavill plays the Man of Steel himself in the franchise, while Levi will play Captain Marvel/Shazam in Shazam, which is currently filming and comes out April 5, 2019.

The former’s message about Superman was rather heartfelt. It included a portrait by Eddie Lius depicting the hero as an old man, and said that the hero not only saved people’s lives, but “perhaps our souls,” giving hope to readers. He noted that Superman has inspired him to grow as a person and also stopped to thank all of the many writers and artists who have worked to create his legacy over the decades.

Levi’s, however, was a bit more mischievous, as he instead posted a dynamic comic panel where his own character is punching Superman in the face. “Happy birthday, old man! You don’t look a day past 75. Now stop running into my fist!” he wrote.

Captain Marvel/Shazam, who premiered in 1940, was clearly inspired by Superman and has a lot of similarities, save for the twist that he’s actually a young boy named Billy who can transform into a superpowered adult. (In the film, this part belongs to Asher Angel.)

In the comics, the two are usually depicted as friends, with Billy idolizing Superman and sometimes seeing him as a mentor. However, as Levi’s comic panel proves, the two have often come to blows, usually because one is brainwashed (or just uncharacteristically aggressive due to poor writing).

Cavill and Levi may have a similar dynamic, as the two have joked around on Instagram before. There are rumors that Cavill’s Superman may appear in Shazam, though that is not yet confirmed. Either way, it’s nice to see these two cinematic heroes both stop and pay tribute to a favorite comic character.

Jason Hope and Saying No to Aging

Jason Hope is a sincere philanthropist who is headquartered in Scottsdale in Arizona. Scottsdale is a laid-back Maricopa County desert community. Contemporary society is full of medical issues. Individuals all around the globe deal with all kinds of health concerns. Some individuals have medical concerns that are rather simple. There are others, however, who have markedly more serious ones. It isn’t uncommon for people to experience diseases that are potentially deadly. People understand that health factors are par for the course in life. They rarely acknowledge, though, that no human being on the planet can steer clear of a specific factor. That factor is called aging, plain and simple. Aging impacts individuals regardless of their financial backgrounds, locations and basic lifestyle practices.

People have known for a long time that aging is something that they cannot really dodge. People become older without exception. Their bones get a lot weaker. Their skin takes on a thinner and more lined appearance. People develop problems managing tasks that used to be simple and basic for them as well. There are various diseases that are typical in people who are elderly. Diseases that are part of this category can bring on all sorts of issues for humans. Examples of diseases that frequently pop up in elderly persons are high blood pressure or hypertension, cancer, osteoporosis and arthritis. Technological updates have helped the war against these medical conditions. The sad reality is, though, that the medical world concentrates more on handling them. It doesn’t concentrate much on stopping them from popping up in the first place. Treatment is generally the top priority.

The aforementioned Jason Hope is an entrepreneur who has the objective to aid individuals with longevity matters. Jason Hope wants to turn the concept of aging around for people. He wants to boost longevity in humans by making aging take a lot longer. He wants to do so by perhaps even making things go in the opposite direction. Jason Hope has given his assistance to a widely known charitable group that’s called the SENS Foundation for quite a long time at this point. He started putting money behind its main concepts back at the end of 2010. That’s precisely when he gave the group a donation of half a million dollars total. The SENS Foundation aims to provide people with innovative and effective technological means that can handle aging and stop sicknesses from occurring.

Jason Hope info: www.facebook.com/public/Jason-Hope

Josh Brolin Glad He Didn’t Play Batman

Most people would do anything to play Batman, but Josh Brolin says that he’s glad that he didn’t get that part in the DC Extended Universe.

“We indirectly talked about it, but we never got to the point because I wasn’t the guy for him,” Brolin said, referring to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice director Zack Snyder. “I’m really glad it didn’t happen. I haven’t thought twice about it.”

He mentioned that he avoided a lot of comic book movies in general after the failure of Jonah Hex and Sin City: A Dame to Kill For. “Is it deliberate? Almost. It’s not that I turned them down. It’s just not what I wanted to do at that moment. The bigger things, I just stayed away from.”

That might seem odd, given that at the moment, the public is eagerly awaiting the release of Avengers: Infinity War and Deadpool 2, wherein Brolin will be starring as the Mad Titan Thanos and Cable, respectively. So clearly, while he has some comic book duds in his record, overall the genre has been very good to him.

He did not elaborate why he’s particularly glad about turning down a role as the Caped Crusader, but many will assume it has to do with the poor reception of the DCEU thus far; aside from Wonder Woman, all have been divisive, and they have not always been as profitable as their studios wanted, either. The Marvel Cinematic Universe and Deadpool, however, have both been surprise successes.

The Batman role was instead given to Ben Affleck, and while Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was generally not well received, his acting was. He is rumored to want to leave the franchise himself, though, and word is that Warner Bros. is on the lookout for someone to replace him.