WORK. It's what we do, what we obsess over, celebrate, complain about, get paid for. We may call it Art, but it's still work. Particularly for creative types, where we do our work must have something to do with how it turns out, for better or worse - yet we rarely get to see behind the curtain.

We would like you to share something about your special place where creativity blooms. So where do you work?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Izzy's Funhouse

When the Circus came to Town.
We have heard stories about the wild and playful places where some people work - the Google and Pixar palaces with loads of kids toys for grownups. They sport foosball tables and basketball hoops to fool with while they wax creative. Forced fun for a captive audience, these corporate idea mills cannot hold a candle to Izzy's Funhouse.
He's a pinball wizard, that has to be a twist...
 Izzy is an artist and commercial photographer who collects iconic trappings of 20th century American life - such as Halloween masks, paint-by-number kits and pinball machines. It turns out that a photo studio and amusement arcade can coexist quite nicely. Mechanical Pinball and arcade machines reached a zenith of popularity in the 1960's, sucking kid's quarters like slot machines. These were sturdy workhorses, designed for punishing use. Many machines are still in existence, though they now could use some TLC, if not outright rebuilding. Izzy is a handy guy, and so a corner of the photo studio has become a dedicated renovation shop for vintage arcade games.

Pre-circuit board technology
The inside of a vintage pinball machine is a collection of coils, switches, solenoids, lights and levers. This is old-school analog technology at its best. Needlenose pliers, dust brush, tweezers and a soldering iron are the preferred tools here.

The studio is in a nondescript one-story business park, about as anonymous as can be. Izzy says he misses his old Midtown Sacramento studio with its friendly neighbors, restaurants and services in easy walking distance. But more space, better layout and lower rent just make good business sense. Between photo assignments he tinkers with an old wood-rail machine, preparing for the Pacific Pinball Expo in September. It is an enviable creative environment in which to work, with stress relief always right at hand. Eat your heart out, Pixar.
Izzy Schwartz is an artist, commercial photographer and arcade aficionado residing in Sacramento. His work can be found HERE 

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Ghost Lab Design Conference 2011

Nova Scotia site of the Ghostlab
Architect Bryan McKay-Lyons has run a summer design/build camp for creative architectural students for the past dozen years. This year, he decided a conference would be a nice change. Esteemed luminaries such as Rick Joy, Glenn Murcutt, Kenneth Frampton and Ted Flato joined nearly 200 others for this June gathering to talk about architecture, sustainability and place. Wouldn't it be something to get an invite to the Ghostlab 2012 conference!

Full story here -
Ghost Lab 2011 | Editorial | Architectural Record

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

DIY Bike Shop

Over in Minneapolis, a couple blokes have started an alternative to the full-fledged bike shop. Maybe you are a rider who has dropped a chain or snapped a cable on the way to work; or some nagging adjustment you meant to make slipped your mind and is bugging you. Old alternative - take the bike to a bike shop, navigate through all the beautiful but pricey new bikes, find the repair counter, drop it off for a few days, figure out how to get by without your bike and pay an irritating bill. NEW alternative - pull into the Bike Fixation, swipe your debit card and choose your pleasure (tube, tire, lube, cable etc.) put it up on the repair stand, use the provided tools  and viola - a self-actualized improvement to your steed, right before your eyes.

Sure, it's not for everyone nor every situation, but it's a great idea for some and seems like a good way to encourage riding and demystify repair. A go-to, public work station with key bicycle tools - a whereuwork gem.

Get the full story HERE