Hal is the best.
He is the best boss. The best creative. The best at communicating a brand.
He is the best listener and also the best teacher.
He is the best at showing up at work with a knatty head of hair. The best at chewing on his glasses when Read More »
Today at Nau we’re launching a new series of profiles that are part of the on-going project we call Portraits of our Friends.
These latest works are the result of an ongoing collaboration with the bold and beautiful photographer Eden Batki, the never-sleep filmmakers Thomas Oliver and Jordan Strong of Into the Woods fame, the composer Rocky Tilden of the band Wampire, and our principal stylist, the lovely Sarah Van Raden.
Last season’s theme was design; now we have the provocateurs.
I’ll be the first to admit that the theme can get a little heavy if taken too seriously (especially when it’s French, and in italics), but the sentiment’s real. We’ve selected 12 people, in 10 portraits, who are Read More »
[An occasional update on what we're listening to now. - Ed]
For reasons I won’t go into here, I live in a place dubbed the Caribou Cottage. The name hails from the animal itself, which is, in my opinion, among the most magnificent on the planet.
Caribou is also a fun word to say (especially when loud, and with a long drawn-out boooo at the end), and it has over the years inspired some very badass musical moments. Moments that I have been playing on repeat lately. Who knows why. None of this music is new. I am thinking it is because of the place where I live. When I hear mention of the mighty Caribou, I listen.
We’ve been busy lately. Doing a lot of strange things.
Last week, we had to find a pig.
And a place to put a house.
We had to find an open field, a muddy road, and the best pants to wear with knee-high rubber boots.
All this to make the subjects of our Fall 10 Portraits Series happy. And all requests that have been an absolute delight to fulfill. Because Read More »
[An occasional update on what some of us are listening to now. - Ed.]
I am addicted to this song. I play it right when I wake up, and just before I go to bed. And then I dream about it.
This song, along with the rest of The Cults new album, is available as a free download here.
Washington snowpacks are among the most sensitive to warming in the West because of their relatively low elevation.
Editor’s note: This post marks the first in a series of updates from our 2009 Grant for Change grantees, Benjamin Drummond and Sara Joy Steele. The Seattle-based documentary team will be sending us monthly updates from the field, as they work to build eight new stories for their long-term project, Facing Climate Change.
My partner Benj and I are a documentary team that specializes in multimedia stories about people, nature and climate change. A few months ago Nau awarded us their first annual Grant for Change to support our long-term documentary project, Facing Climate Change. Throughout this year, we’ll post periodic updates about our work in The Thought Kitchen, and we wanted to start off by introducing ourselves and explaining a little bit more about what exactly we’re doing.
Facing Climate Change uses photography and multimedia to personalize the story of global change through local people. We began this work back in 2006 with a series of stories about Sámi reindeer herders in Norway, volunteer glacier monitors from Iceland and fishermen of the North Atlantic. The G4C is going to help us create a new series of stories that explore the impacts of climate change through people who live and work in the Pacific Northwest. From wildfire fighters and apple growers, to coastal tribes, paramedics and snowmakers, people throughout this region must confront and adapt to the consequences of warming. Their unique stories about who they are and what they do, their everyday challenges and long-term ambitions will help to make an abstract issue more accessible to local audiences, while also contributing to a global conversation.
In the Pacific Northwest region, the area burned by fire is projected to double by the 2040′s and triple by the 2080′s.
We think that our own backyard is an ideal region for a case study, not only because of its diverse ecological, cultural and economic landscapes, but also because of an unprecedented new assessment that downscales global trends into local projections. At more than 400 pages, the Washington Climate Change Impacts Assessment documents the latest research on how climate change will likely affect eight sectors of our environment and economy by the end of this century: agriculture, coasts, energy, forests, human health, salmon, urban stormwater infrastructure and water resources. Read More »
Unlike our dear sweet Peter, who unequivocally hearts it, I wrestle with New York.
I’m no country bumpkin, but still, the place overwhelms me. The people, the concrete, the noise, the haste. I don’t hate it, but it does make me weak in the knees, and not in a love way. More of a swaying-side-to-side-with-dizziness-as-the-world-swirls-around-me sort of way.
This is why it’s good to have friends.
Especially friends I can email with such random requests as, “Hey, do you know anyone in New York who could help me build a Christmas-tree-ish window display out of bike parts?” And who can write me back in less than a day with not only a,“Yes, totally,” but also a, “While you’re out there, do you think you’ll need a bike to ride?”
Which is how I met the crew at NYC Velo. Charged with the mission to pull together a new window display for here/nau/nyc that touched on alternative ways to move through the city, I arrived in NY with the name and number of one lone bike-enthused guy: Mike.
Mike introduced me to Andrew, owner of NYC Velo, and Andrew introduced me to Justin, one of his employees who held a special affinity for installing bikes in unorthodox, gravity-defying ways. Collectively these guys evolved my zoo-bomb inspired vision of a holiday heap of bikes into a much more elegant display using their own, personal frames (Surly’s, IF’s, and Civia’s among them), all swirling around our front window like a band of wild horses.
And as if that wasn’t enough, the crew at NYC Velo also turned me on to my two new favorite things to do in their fair city: 1) ride a Kona humuhumunukunukuapua with monster knobby tires through the narrow streets and sprawling boulevards, fearlessly dominating the cobblestone of Soho and the potholes of everywhere else, and 2) riding straight to the best americano the city has to offer, at the hole-in-the-wall café in the East Village, Abraço Espresso.
Thanks to my friends, and my friends of friends with bikes, I’ve seen New York in an entirely new light. Less about its world swirling around a static me, and more about me – on a bike – swirling around it. It’s fun. You should try it.
And if you’re in New York, you can see NYC Velo’s fine work in our window ‘til December 13th. You’ll also find more pics of the display here.
(photo courtesy NYC Velo)
Dearest, darling Univega,
Oh how I heart thee. Heart. As in LOVE. Love with all my heart.
Will you be my summer fling? I need you to be my summer fling.
You rocked me the moment we met. Do you remember that day? Almost three weeks ago? In the back of that garage, behind the house of a man called Duane. I took you for a test ride…too many gears, not a great saddle, sticky tacky rubbery grips…but Oh! the potential.
I knew you had it in you. The steel mixte frame, in a cool metallic blue. Just enough wabi-sabi scrapes and dings to know you’ve lived a full life so far. And you were made in Japan! My sources tell me that it’s better that you were made in Japan.
And now. Oh the transformation. Who could possibly say cosmetic surgery is an extravagance when it can yield such glistening perfection? Gone are the gears; with your 42:18 ratio you now ride like a song. Au revoir black squishy saddle, the Brooks props me up with a firm resolve. And your touch…the caress of your new cork grips against the heel of my hand gives me goosebumps. Truly! Even when it rains.
Yes, Univega. This is our time. Me. And you. This might just be the summer of our lives. Nevermind the eye rolling and mock-vomiting of my friends, they’ll get used to my unfettered expression of our love. Nevermind the evil eye of the Bianchi, who now sits neglected in the corner. She’ll get used to it. We can do this as a team! A team of three! Haven’t you ever seen Vicky, Cristina, Barcelona?
I am in love. May this fluttery feeling in my heart never die. May the smile on my face as we ride through the city never fade, not even when the bugs get stuck in my teeth. Not even when my skirt flips up immodestly. Not even, Univega, when this summer nears its end, and I may need to tuck you away – temporarily! – for the Bianchi, who has fenders.
Love. LOVE, Univega. As in heart. You have my heart.
Let us ride.
The outdoor industry is collectively mourning a terrible loss with the recent deaths of climbers Jonny Copp and Wade Johnson. They and fellow climber Micah Dash (who is, as of this writing, still missing) were attempting a new route on Mt. Edgar’s Minya Konka massif, in China’s Western Sichuan Province, when an apparent avalanche swept across their path.
I only knew Micah and Wade distantly, and send love, strength and condolences to their families and friends, as have hundreds of people from all over the world, whose support continues to stream in at an impressive volume via Facebook and the Adventure Film Festival blog. (Facebook, I am learning, can have some real heart, when used toward the good of a thing.)
Jonny was an early member of Nau’s community of Influencers, those artists, athletes, and activists who unabashedly rock our world through their authentic pursuit of their passions in outdoor sport, design, and environmental and social activism.
We established the Influencers early on, knowing we would need a community of peers not only to review our products each season, but also to keep us real; to remind us, when wandering astray, of our priorities, which are, simply put, to move, be moved, and move others.
Through his work as a climber, photographer, filmmaker, and Director of the Adventure Film Festival in Boulder, Jonny was, in his never tiring, slightly goofy, and always humble way, an Influencer to a tee.
As the photo editor at Nau, I first met Jonny through his eyes. I was immediately drawn to his photographs and films, not only for the way they captured the breathtaking rarity of the people and places he knew, but also for their clarity and honesty. There wasn’t a lot of clutter, just clean lines, clear faces, and a direct route from me, the viewer, to the essence of whatever he was trying to convey, whether it was to get me outside, to show me someone’s spirit, or to make me laugh my ass off. His view to the world was rare, curious, courageous, real, fresh, funny, and inspiring.
As was Jonny himself. During Nau 1.0, we met or spoke every few months, and I always looked forward to those meetings. I was impressed (given his lifestyle) with his ability to sit still, to look me in the eye, hear what I had to say, offer constructive feedback, and to tell tales of his mindblowing adventures without ever spinning off into a space of self-congratulatory bravado.
We tossed around how, then when, we could fold his work into our ever-evolving efforts at Nau. Things never lined up, not for lack of trying, but only because Jonny was always about to leave, or already gone, off to his next best thing.
There never seems to be enough time. This can be an annoying thing, but occasionally a good thing, too. Jonny made the most of this – not wasting a single moment of his very full, but far too short, life. Thinking about my own experience of this man, I am also reminded that sometimes a blip in time is all it takes to reveal a powerful force. I did not need to know him for years to recognize how profound Jonny’s impact on our world would be.
I will miss his bright eyes, his crushing hug, and his ear-to-ear smile, but I will not miss his inspiration, because that will stay right here, in his lasting work and in my mind, a little nudge from Jonny here and there, keeping me motivated, keeping me real.
Love to you, Jonny Copp.
Learn how you can help here.
(photos gently borrowed from coppworks.com and adventurefilm.org, and I am hoping that in this case it’s ok…)