Ukusela eKapa (#WDC411), Part 1: The Big Squeeze
Throughout the year the Ukusela eKapa team has been travelling around greater Cape Town encouraging people to "squeeze", thereby giving each person a chance to make a permanent, personal mark on a ceramic cup that will be shared with the world.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 21 November 2014  |  View Comments

The World Design Capital project that, arguably, has been the most visible, has been the most interactive, and has touched the most lives in and around Cape Town has been Ukusela eKapa (#WDC411), a collaboration between ceramics artist Hennie Meyer and architect Janine de Waal that's backed by a small studio team based in Durbanville. Read on...



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The Red Bull Doodle Art Global Gallery (#WDC216): Interactive Art In The Company's Garden
Last month Red Bull brought the international finals of its Doodle Art competition to South Africa and set up the Red Bull Doodle Art Global Gallery in The Company's Garden in Cape Town, where visitors could interact with the doodles and learn more about the winning countries as part of a World Design Capital project.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 18 November 2014  |  View Comments

Red Bull partnered with the World Design Capital initiative to bring the finals of its annual Doodle Art competition, which comprised 32 551 entries from dozens of countries, to Cape Town as project #WDC216. The competition allows doodlers to create an artwork and a winner is then chosen in each country. This year those winners worked with Red Bull to design a physical art piece that represented something about each of their countries or cultures, and which could be used to incorporate their winning doodle, in what was the first global event for the competition. Read on...


Interstellar
In Interstellar, a new film by Christopher Nolan, the human race has to take to the stars - or risk dying out permanently on Earth - but the resulting emotional sacrifice may be too great for the man coerced into piloting the research expedition that could be the only chance humans have left to save themselves.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 7 November 2014  |  View Comments

Interstellar is set on a near-future Earth on which crops are routinely beginning to fail - permanently - due to blight (presumably Monsanto couldn't save us - or perhaps it's Monsanto's fault). The result is an increase in extreme weather, including dust storms, famine that is rife, and a reduction in oxygen as plants slowly begin to disappear from the planet. Meanwhile, states have disappeared as people have regrouped to form farming-centric communities to survive but a bigger, bleaker picture looms as there are really only two solutions to ensuring the survival of the human species - either everyone needs to evacuate Earth or the species needs to repopulate elsewhere. Either way, a new home has to be found that can support human life. Unfortunately, the population that is left is more interested in survival in the short term to contemplate the ramifications of the bigger picture: extinction. Read on...


Showcase: #inktober 2014, Day 17 To Day 24: The Little Witch, The Last Unicorn, Outer Space, Monsters, Dragons, And More
The InkTober Challenge is a challenge for a reason, though the point is to increase your skills and work out of your comfort zone, not just produce work. However, the project has taken its toll and some South African comics artists have slowly begun to fall out. See who has found the fortitude to keep going, who has just disappeared, and who knows how to bow out gracefully - all in part three of brainwavez.org's 2014 showcase.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 6 November 2014  |  View Comments

This is the third post in brainwavez.org's series showcasing the work of the #sacomicsSouth African comics people who have been taking part in The InkTober Initiative. (You can read more about the project in the first post.) This one is a little later than it should have been because it became evident that some people were struggling to keep up with the demands of a time-consuming daily challenge so I wanted to give them a bit more time to post their work. Read on...





5 Zombie Questions: Raymond E Feist
It's that time of the year when ghouls, ghosts, and monsters come out to play. Internationally acclaimed speculative-fiction author Raymond E Feist gives us his take on dragons, the apocalypse, voodoo, zombies, vampires - and zombie vampires.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 31 October 2014  |  View Comments

Raymond E Feist is not known for his zombie novels, for good reason - that's not what he writes. Instead he has sold over 15 million copies of a fantasy series that has spanned 30 novels written over more than 30 years, and which has been translated into numerous languages. However, that wasn't going to stop me from cornering him with five zombie questions while he was in Cape Town recently for the annual Open Book Festival. My theory is that anyone with an active imagination - and we can place most (though perhaps not all) speculative-fiction authors in that category - has pondered zombies and mulled over numerous apocalypse scenarios. Read on...


South African Comics News Roundup: More Local Events, Political Drama, Sparko, Juvies, Jerm, And Throwback Thursday

Comics season (part two) is in full swing in South Africa. Here's a roundup of new events taking place all over the country, as well as news of recent conventions in the UK, new comics in the works, and cartoonists tackling the courts. Plus, have a look at another batch of sketches, finished artworks, and a little Throwback Thursday fun. Read on...
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 23 October 2014  |  View Comments


Showcase: #inktober 2014, Day 9 To Day 16: Ripley, Rocket, Groot, Superman, Mini Dachshunds, And More
October's #inktober challenge is in full swing and South African comics creators have continued to work hard to produce one ink-based artwork a day. This is part two of the brainwavez.org showcase of their creations for 2014.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 21 October 2014  |  View Comments

Last week brainwavez.org showcased the first eight days of The InkTober Initiative, focussing on the artworks produced by South African comics creators and illustrators who are taking part in the challenge, which aims to encourage artists to push themselves and practice illustrating by creating one new ink drawing a day for the month of October. Read on...



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Zapiro's Democrazy Showcases 20 Years Of Work At The AVA Gallery
The work of prolific South African editorial cartoonist Zapiro is featured in a new exhibition that's running in Cape Town until the end of the month. Plus, get a glimpse into some work-in-progress sketches from Zapiro's archives.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 16 October 2014  |  View Comments

The Association For Visual Arts (AVA) Gallery in Church Street, Cape Town, is currently hosting an exhibition of the work of editorial cartoonist Zapiro (Jonathan Shapiro), focussing on 40 pieces that comment on the political situation in South Africa - from the country's transition from apartheid into the Mandela years, through the Mbeki era, to the current Zuma circus - as well as a selection of popular sports-related editorial cartoons. Read on...


Showcase: #inktober 2014, Day 1 To Day 8: Alien, Mario Bros., LEGO, Werewolves, And More
It's October, which means it's time to get ink on your hands (if you're an artist, anyway). This is part one of the brainwavez.org showcase of local comics creators' #inktober sketches for 2014.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 13 October 2014  |  View Comments

The InkTober Initiative is an annual social-media-based art project that was started in 2009 by Jake Parker, an illustrator based in Utah, as a personal challenge to help him improve his drawing skills and stretch himself. Now thousands of artists all over the world take part in the project each October by producing one ink drawing each day and posting their work on social platforms. Read on...


FIFA 15 Launches In South Africa With A Celebrity-Filled Soccer Showdown
The South African FIFA 15 launch featured a showdown between celebrity gamers and their friends, as well as four lucky fans who got to join in on the action, in a knockout tournament on the Xbox One at MWEB's offices in Cape Town.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 8 October 2014  |  View Comments

At the end of September MWEB GameZone hosted the South African launch party for FIFA 15, which took the form of a four-team showdown using the Xbox One. Each team comprised three celebrities and a gamer from the audience. The teams were then pitted against each other in a knockout tournament to determine the victor, with each team member of the winning team going on to win an Xbox One console, as well as other goodie-bag prizes. Read on...


GrafLit 2014: Urban Interiors: The Launch And Exhibition
GrafLit 2014: Urban Interiors, the latest anthology of graphic literature by South African artists, was launched recently in Cape Town at a corresponding art exhibition to which artists, illustrators, and comics creators featured in the book contributed illustrations, sculptures, and paintings.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 30 September 2014  |  View Comments

Last year the inaugural edition of GrafLit: Graveyard Literature In Black & White was launched in Cape Town and I was honoured to have been a contributor to that book, which, although an experiment, was planned as what would hopefully be the start of an annual project showcasing the work of both established and up-and-coming artists, illustrators, and comics creators. Read on...


South African Comics News Roundup: Open Book Comics Fest, Batwoman, Tomica, And GrafLit

It's September, which means it's time for the start of another round of comics-related events that will be happening all over South Africa for the next couple of months. It can become overwhelming so we've got the bulk of them listed here to help you keep track. Plus, local comics creators continue to work on their projects and post teasers on social media so we're sharing a few to get you excited for what's on the horizon. Read on...
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 18 September 2014  |  View Comments



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The Cut Out Mash-Up Exhibition At Alex Hamilton Art Studio
The latest exhibition at the Alex Hamilton Art Studio in Cape Town featured papercraft, vintage mashups, steel artworks, and a stencilled flock of birds.
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 10 September 2014  |  View Comments

It's been a while since I last wrote about an exhibition at artist Alex Hamilton's studio in Woodstock, Cape Town, although he usually runs a new one every four months or so under a loose theme that's really just an excuse to gather some great art in one place and have a bit of a party. Read on...


Indie Game News Roundup: Monument Valley Wins Awards, Indie Games To Shine At PAX Prime, And Gryphon Knight Epic Unveils More Teasers

It's a busy time for indie games (although, to be honest, when isn't it?). Monument Valley has been winning awards, indie games will be in the spotlight at the PAX Prime expo in Seattle, The Nightmare Cooperative has gone mobile, and find out how you can get the Duet soundtracks for free - it's all in this roundup. Read on...
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 29 August 2014  |  View Comments


News: Blow Up Enemies In Cavern Kings, Which Is On To Its Stretch-Goal Funding On Kickstarter

Cavern Kings is an action platform game designed to test your reflexes and determination as you power through a never-ending series of levels filled with enemies. It features pixel art and a chiptune-inspired soundtrack and is looking for a little extra help through Kickstarter to reach stretch goals and pay for the expertise of a couple of professionals to add final polish to the game. Read on...
By: Mandy J Watson  |  Posted: 28 August 2014  |  View Comments


Recipe: Bourbon Vanilla Extract
A ubiquitous ingredient in nearly every sweet recipe from cakes to bread, vanilla extract ranges in quality and price but it's surprisingly easy to make at home with two ingredients and six weeks' worth of patience and restraint.
By: Jase Luttrell  |  Posted: 27 August 2014  |  View Comments

Homemade vanilla extract is made by infusing a liquor with all or part of a vanilla bean. The liquor you use will impact the flavour and should always be at least 40% abv (alcohol by volume or 80 proof). This recipe uses bourbon because of its complex flavour and dark colour. Specifically, I use Burnside Bourbon from Eastside Distilling in Portland, Oregon, because of its natural sweet finish and light body. A similar bourbon would be Bulleit or any bourbon that has honey or strong fruit notes rather than a taste profile that is characterised as bold, peppery, or spicy. The idea is that you want the vanilla to stand out but also round out the flavours. Read on...





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South Africa Mandy J Watson
Founder and co-editor
Cape Town, South Africa

United States Jase Luttrell
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Portland, Oregon, United States

Awards, Nominations, And Highlights

★ 2013: Syndicated In The South African
E-Book Editions Of The Shining Girls By
Lauren Beukes

(ISBN: 9781415205044 (ePub))
(ISBN: 9781415205051 (PDF))
"Designing The Shining Girls Covers: We Go Behind The Scenes With Joey Hi-Fi"

★ 2011: Excerpts Syndicated In The South African Re-Release Edition Of Moxyland By Lauren Beukes
(ISBN: 9781431401864)
"Interview: Lauren Beukes, South African Author Of Moxyland"

★ 2011: Featured On Neatorama
"10 Classic Fictional Music Videos From TV's Past (And Present)"Neatorama Link ]

★ 2010: Featured On Neatorama
"10 Classic Speculative-Fiction Works Reinterpreted As Word Clouds"Neatorama Link ]

★ 2010 South African Blog Awards
Winner, Best Post On A South African Blog, for "Marketing District 9: The Web"

★ 2010: Mentioned On io9
"Bid On The Zoo City Bares"io9 Link ]

★ 2010: Syndicated In The South African Edition Of Zoo City By Lauren Beukes
(ISBN: 9781770098183)
"Designing The Zoo City Cover"

★ 2009 South African Blog Awards
Runner up, Best Post On A South African Blog, for "The Anti-Connoisseur's Guide To A Walk In The African Bush"

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