coffee + cre8tive {aug 9 '06}


I've been hooked on web videos lately. It all started while reading dooce last week and clicking around on her links, where I found this gem: Crazy Horses by The Osmonds on YouTube. Heather sums it up nicely, "Mormons singing metal. I've always said that if the Lord had a choice HE WOULD ROCK IT THIS HARD." The video is honestly so funny that you'd think it was a joke, but surprise, it's not. It was actually cool to dance that way back in the 70s. Imagine that.

After viewing Crazy Horses, of course I had to spend an hour surfing for other funny videos, because let's face it, watching people act like fools is quite entertaining when so much around us is quite serious most of the day. After the YouTube comedy hour, I felt the need to ground myself again so I started scouring the web for videos that would actually teach me something (other than how to dance like a snake on crack), and decided that it would be fun to see if any design mags had worthwhile videos on their sites... So I clicked over to Living Etc and found only one, a short snippet of a show. (yeah, looks like they have their own show in the UK... drool.) After visiting Living Etc and coming up somewhat empty handed, I shot over to Real Simple, Cottage Living, and a few other magazine sites and well, nada. I'm hoping that this changes, especially since they have the ability to pull together interesting videos showcasing talented professionals at work.

Of course, Martha Stewarthas a ton of videos on her site, although you do have to suffer through 30 seconds of initial advertising. I don't care though, Martha always has the best tips. No matter how people diss her, she will always be the pioneer of the "you should care about your home as much as your wardrobe" movement. I remember years ago, shelter mags for the under 35 crowd didn't exist. Young people weren't 'designing' their dorms. Newlyweds weren't hiring interior stylists. Throw us a mass produced sofa that also reclines, and most home owners were thrilled. We didn't stress over paint color like it's going to alter the future of life as we know it. Martha shows us that being a domestic goddess is very hip, knowing 1,000 uses for a q-tip really matters, and that knowing how to cook a mean pot roast or crochet a scarf doesn't categorize you as some dumpy bored housewife who is selling out. It makes you look like you have your act together. You have a career and a clean toilet, well fed children, and iron a shirt in 3.2 seconds flat. You're the queen diva. We have Martha to thank for that.

I don't know though, but it seems like videos have potential of becoming the new 'it' thing for online mags and bloggers, and I hope so... I'd love to have an opportunity to plug in to it all this from anywhere in the world, just as we can with blogs (and why blogs are so appealing). I think clips showing viewers how trend setters pull together a story, scout for the seasons latest trends, decorate a room on a budget, tour us of a designers workspace, etc. are really helpful. I don't always have time to sit down and watch an hour long program about design (especially since it's really only a 40 minute program with all the commercial breaks), but I do have time for 10 minutes on the web. I'd love to see designer interviews conducted this way as well. A written interview is great, as is a podcast, but a video would be most clever, especially if the interview takes place in the designers living room or work space, so you could get a glimpse of their personal life. I could flip open my laptop anywhere in the world and watch it, gather some friends around my monitor, and viola! something we can all tune into and enjoy together.

If you have a few design related videos that you'd like to suggest, you know, to further suck up quality time, please do bring it! :) Has anyone ever watched treehugger TV? I have to set aside some time to check that out.

[UPDATE: I did a little Martha googling - is it REALLY true that she just celebrated her 65th birthday? I read somewhere that she was born Martha Helen Kostyra on August 3, 1941 in New Jersey. If this is the case, all I can say is, what a lady! 65? I would have guessed her around Oprah's age...sheesh.]