Sunday, 28 February 2010


photographs of 'A Sweet Sharing Project'

I was lucky enough to be invited to watch and experience a competition called Eco-Innovations that encourages young designers to collaborate from their different fields to think up new ways in which we, as young designers, can help to influence people into becoming sustainable or even just becoming aware of the affect we are having on the environment which therefore may encourge us to change.

The project is in association with 60 Earth Hour. This video captivates what they d0;

Massey University 4th years worked together from different design fields including Spatial Design, Graphics, Advertising and Textiles to create design ideas which have amazing potential to dramatically improve the world.

Projects included t-shirts that you could have your say printed on the front and the label would be visible on the back where yuo choose how you want your t-shirt printed and made, eg, which fabric, where it is made etc, therefore showing everyone else how much you care about how your product is made and ultimately if it is sustainable.

Another was a product that mimics the milking of a cow. It would be set up in the supermarket and look like a drinking tap (with udder 'teets') where you take your glass milk bottle and refill it when you need milk. The idea behind this is to cut out the middle man and make us think of how things can be done easily, and not forgetting enjoyably!

This example is 'A sweet sharing Project' - is an idea that is taken back to communities and when we used to share things with our neighbours, such as a bag of sugar. Instead of consuming more and more we do not need, this project would aim to encourage people not only to share, but to spend time and make friends with the people around you.

Others from this project;
To see others from this competition
thanks to; team double you's flikr. All of the entrants mentioned in this blog.

Monday, 22 February 2010

Mouri Welcoming

The Maori Culture has a stigma attached to it. It is wrong. In the Western World many of us believe the Maori people prance around doing the Hakka in next to nothing clothes whilst munching on a human limb. Ok, so thats an overeggerating but you get the gist.

The 'new' New Zealanders aka the people that aren't Maori, are respectful of the Maori cultures so therefore if you stay in New Zealand you are asked to go to a Maori Powhiri where you are invited into their worship building and you are greeted whilst listening to a Maori women sing the welcoming song.

The process is as follows:

1. You congregate outside the worship room
2. Everyone takes off their shoes
3. The men enter first (traditionally this was the check the space for any dangers before the women entered)
4. As you enter you are greeted by the Maori one at a time by pressing noses together twice and staring with complete concentration. Following this is a firm hand shake when you say Kia Ora (thanking for them having you)
5. You are now welcomed into the Marae where the ceremony takes place.

A Maori Meeting

The Powhiri is a short but memorable experience that is greatly appreciated by the original New Zealand culture. The fact that they still have this so strong in this country is admiring and completely contradicts the conception they are all cannibals (although the leader did joke of this at first and told stories of when they did feed so many people with their leaders dead body at their funeral!)

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

New people and new 'home'

I have just touched down in Wellington, New Zealand, after travelling halfway around the world, not forgetting 5 amazing days in LA with my in law Mexican-Californian family.

Apart from the complete flip on the world map I still feel suprisingly at home and like I'm pretty much still in Scotland (maybe this is due to the greyness all around, sky and buildings). The only difference seems to be the warmth. Even the New Zealanders all seem to have Scottish relatives closeby and the accent is a sort of mixture of English, American and Australian. It's not broad at all, unlike mine which seems to be causing an excitement to all the new students even if they do think it is Irish..

Isn't it strange how you can travel around the whole world but it's still the same? This goes back to an older post I wrote about home and where the heart is - What makes home? It makes me wonder what it means to me. Previously I thought home was where I have bonds with people and possesions, relationships that cannot be replaced etc. And yes, to a certain extent this is true but I have found a new home now and I admit I could talk only a sentence about each person around me.

So what does home mean to me now? Where I feel safe. Where I feel appriciated. Where I can walk around in my 10 year old pyjamas and feel at ease.

Another thing which I can't help thinking about is why I feel so at home with these new people. It is as if faces and personalities seem to mirror another person on the other side of the world. I'm starting to think maybe there is another 'you' in each continent or country, just in another body. In fact maybe just one other you, mirroring exactly what you do.

However I have not found me in New Zealand yet..

Wellington from Mt Victoria