Hi All --
As the editing process continues I have a few quick updates. Namely - we are not alone! There are many kindred spirits out there who *get* it. Who are writing and creating -- who feel this pull towards adventure, see beauty in unlikely places and they're spreading the word!
Joan Almon at The Alliance for Childhood has just released a booklet: Adventure: The Value of Risk in Children's Play. It includes all the facts and figures you're grasping for when defending risk and play in your community - and it's only $12.95! Inside you'll recognize several photos of The Land. The more adults that take an interest in self-directed play, playwork and risk... the smilier my smile gets. So check it out.
Audio from the film is included in this incredible new installation in New York. If you're in the area check out Empire Drive In -- it re-uses disposable artifacts from consumer culture for creative and playful gains AKA your can watch movies from the back seat of a junked out Mustang!
During the day audio excerpts from the film will be broadcast through the the once booming, now busted car speakers via low-power radio. I'm thrilled to participate in this whimsical project that breaths new life into forgotten objects.
Special thanks to the curator of said audio, the talented and inspiring (and backer of this film!) Ann Heppermann for including us. Now go, go, go if you can and enjoy!
Also have you read this article? Indeed, we are not alone.
Play on, everyone!
I can't believe that I forgot to mention this...
Of course this isn't what I'd envisioned the final displays of this project to be like: If we hit the secondary goal, I'd imagined completely taking over a digital highway billboard and rotating groups of 3 or 4 portraits through it, so that it would be a lot less cluttered while still conveying a sense of diversity. But right now, let's just focus on getting the shoots funded... if we can pull that off, maybe we can approach a sponsor or apply for a grant for the billboard component.
Also, the great folks at CFEVA are the ones who organize the annual Philadelphia Open Studio Tours.
I'll be participating by opening my space at The Cedar Works on Oct 19 & 20; you're welcome to stop by for a visit regardless of what happens with this project.
22 hours to go...
Hello from + POOL world!!! We've been hard at work finishing the last bit of fabrication and packaging for your tiles, as well as preparing for our next round of testing, but wanted to slow down for a second to give everybody a massive update!
OK, the TILES! These heavy beauties will be shipping in two weeks. The lead times on ordering, fabrication and production was a bit more than we anticipated, but we have to say: they're absolutely beautiful. Jason Lefton and his team at Big Secret in Richmond, VA did an incredible job.
FYI: for those of you that pledged group tiles, you should have your Certificates of Authenticity and First Dips passes already in hand! If you haven't received them, please notify us ASAP.
The past 2 months have been non-stop designing and engineering Float Lab, and we're learning a ton. Thanks to all your support, we're not only able to build Float Lab but push the engineering of the project to a completely new level.
In addition to our partners at Arup, we're honored to welcome the incredible guys at Persak & Wurmfeld, a team of naval architects based in Brooklyn, and Mackworth, an innovative company specializing in filtration textiles and systems.
And thanks to the momentum from all of your support, we've also been able to push the testing even further than we had originally planned. It'll take a little more time but will give us and the city a much better understanding of how best to clean and swim in the rivers. We've expanded the testing to two phases: DATA and FILTRATION.
The DATA phase, which is launching in late November this year, will be one of the most extensive water quality tests ever done in New York rivers. We're super stoked on this. Starting in November and lasting for an entire year, we'll be testing every necessary water quality parameter needed to make the FILTRATION phase as efficient as possible. We're also teaming up with an awesome initiative called the River Project on Pier 26 to help make that happen. And most excitingly, we're working on a way to bring that data to the public in an easy to understand and educational way. For better or worse, everybody will know what's in these rivers.
The FILTRATION phase, launching in January 2014, will be testing the complete combination of filtration membranes inside a prototype of + POOL's actual structure. It's launching in January so we can not only test for a longer time, but we can capture data and learning from how the FILTRATION behaves during all seasons. It'll basically be what we wanted to originally do with Float Lab, but way more awesome, and way closer to the final + POOL design.
Whew. That was a lot. Are ya still reading??? Nice. OK, stay tuned over the next few weeks, especially on Facebook and Twitter, cause we'll be sharing tons of process updates on what's happening over here.
We'd also like to formally introduce you to two new team members over here at + POOL:
Michelle Thayer is amazing graphic designer and all around serious task master, helping with all things tiles.
Wes LeForce, who's helping lead the charge on all architectural and engineering development of + POOL. He's a sharp dude and was part of the original filtration testing at Brooklyn Bridge Park in 2011.
This project is happening because of you, and you did it Tile By Tile. We can't thank you enough for your support and your patience. Building a project at this scale is super intense, and without your belief in it, and us, it just wouldn't be possible.
Archie, Jeff, Dong, Wes, Michelle + POOL
Just a short update. First we have posted the screened poster to our site for pre-orders. Second, we wanted to post the Star Trek Enterprise reference for Iowa. Lastly we wanted to mention that we will be sending the surveys to you all once we have final art on each reference that will make it to the final map. So don’t worry that we have yet to do that.
In order to ensure the book will be in your hands for christmas we had to make a judgement call and set in motion the ordering of a hardcover proof. Today the paperwork was signed. All backers are now being upgraded to hardcover.
For lack of precise number: I'm going to announce a retroactive stretch goal of $11,111. Congrats.
The words "thank you" doesn't do justice to how grateful we are for everyone's support.
One more thing...
Announcing the two 18x12" posters available in the $60 T-SHIRT CANNON and $89 ERWIN HOBBES EVERYTHING pledge levels.
…to join us for the film's fundraiser in Chicago on Oct. 20: The Mekons' very own Jon Langford just told me he will be attending. The evening just got a whole lot more fun!
Those of you in the Chicago area who are planning on attending, please RSVP by Oct. 14. You can always purchase tickets at the door but I'd like to give an accurate head count to the great food and drink sponsors—Publican Restaurant, Panozzo's Italian Market, City Winery and Dogfish Head Craft Ales. I hope you can make it. (More below after the invite.)
Meantime, those of you in Blighty who are planning on attending the U.K. premiere of the film on Nov. 21 at the Leeds International Film Festival, you can find ticket information here: http://www.leedsfilm.com/films/revenge-mekons/
And last, stay tuned for imminent news of the film's world premiere and other U.S. festival dates. Any day now…
I hope to see you in a couple weeks in Chicago.
Thanks to a break in the weather we are finally able to bring you the last few images from the gallery. We appreciate your patients and we hope you've enjoyed seeing the exhibition.
In order of the images:
"encounter of the third kind" by Nóra Barabás (Hungary) and Hanan Kazma (Lebanon) and "Come closer, side by side" by Ilil Iram (Israel) and Hanan Kazma (Lebanon)
"heartbreaking moons and epic sunsets" by Alicja Anna Chudzik (Poland) and Pierre-Henri Crave (France)
"The king and the amaryllis" by Sébastien Redon-Lévigne (France) and Cyril Berthault-Jacquier (Belgium) and "internal colours" by Stephanie le Pape (USA) and Hanan Kazma (Lebanon)
"licence to carry" by Zosia Krasnowolska (Poland) and Dafydd Williams (Wales)
"Acqua Minerale" by Cyril Berthault-Jacquier (Belgium) and Debora Schmidt (Germany)
Michael here with the latest Kickstarter update to introduce David's sixth dev diary video. In this diary David provides commentary on the Capital Ship Battle video we released recently to announce the in-game composer. If you haven't watched the video yet then you really should check it out, the music is great! (You can see the video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VE8B4KptyVI). In this dev diary David talks about the process we followed and how it has helped to advance development of the game by putting the video together.
David also recently gave a talk at TEDx about procedural generation called 'Rules Can Be Beautiful', you can watch a video of his talk here: youtu.be/GEVutbSqBI0
As mentioned in the last update we'll also release an art diary breaking down the art side of the video in more detail in the next few weeks.
In other news the latest newsletter will be released in the next few days, we've re-synced the newsletter releases so that they correspond with the video releases.
Things are as busy as ever on our forums, if you've backed the game and your reward includes Private Backers or DDF access then make sure to pay a visit and get involved with the discussions. Last week saw a new feature start in the Private Backers forum, it's called 'Peek of the Week' and each week we'll provide a new piece of art or a screenshot of the latest cool asset or feature in game.
Thanks as always for reading and remember that you can still back the game via our website: http://elite.frontier.co.uk
I thought today might be a good day to update you all on the Something for Wildness Project. As we all know, the government has 'shut down' and yep, this means all the National Parks are closed. In April of this year, we visited Yosemite National Park, as well as Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Parks. These were some of last few remaining parks for the project and in Yosemite we interviewed the park ranger that inspired this entire project: Shelton Johnson. He was the fabulous ranger who spoke so eloquently about the parks and its Buffalo Soldiers in Ken Burns' "The National Parks” documentary. We was even on Opra. We are some of his biggest fans and we spent a couple of hours hanging with him in Yosemite, listening to him play his flutes and talking about everything. We have both just finished reading his book, “Gloryland” about one Buffalo Soldier and Yosemite back in the early days and we highly recommend it. All three parks were beyond astounding and we will soon return. Yosemite is celebrating it's 123rd Anniversary today. It's closed for it's own birthday party!
The closure of the parks will unfold in two stages, according to the National Park Service Contingency Plan. In Phase 1, to take place over the first day and a half, all "day visitors" will be instructed to immediately leave the park. Overnight visitors (campers, RVers, and hikers) will be told to leave the park as part of Phase 2 and all commercial services will cease. The total process will take four days. At the end of Phase 2, park operations will be kept at “minimum levels.”
A sad day for the parks and we hope to be spread lots of National Park love when our book comes out. For now, we are working on all of your Rewards and hope they'll be in the mail in the coming months. I cannot thank you all for helping make this dream a reality and believing in the Parks, they are beyond all measure.
Lacey Dupré and Robert Burwell
More information here:
As we exit the intense design phase of this project, we will be sharing out more and more information. We ask that you follow the project's updates via the OpenBeam Blog at:
We prefer to send status updates via our blog to our supporters because Wordpress's features are more useful for including photos, file attachments, and videos.
I will continue to use Kickstarter's update platform to announce shipping related information.
Our updates take on average 2-3 hours each to write! For this reason, we have mostly been focusing our efforts on the engineering instead of project update side. This is because we try to do a good job with including relevant background information, links, etc. They also tend to go through a more in-depth editorial process for error and spell checking, etc. For those of you who want to stay on the bleeding edge of the project, you can also check out OpenBeam's flickr stream for more pictures and updates. Usually, photos that are included on the blog are uploaded to the Flickr stream a few days before publications.
-=- Terence, Rachel and the furry monster puppy