After an unsuccessful siege of 9 years the The Trojan War was over. Odysseus had successfully deceived the enemy into bringing the colossal wooden horse into the city of Troy. Captivated by the size of this magnanimous horse the Trojans pulled the horse into their city walls as a victory trophy. That night Troy was sacked and the Trojans were massacred. The object of their intrigue turned out to be their inevitable destiny in violence and captivation. It was in the design of this massive scaled horse that the Trojan War was won. It is a phenomenal example of how opposites (big and small, muscle and mind, life and lifeless) come into play to achieve the necessary outcome. It is also an interesting lesson in the duality of our existence.Interestingly enough, it was love and beauty that launched this decade of hate and war. As Christopher Marlowe, the Elizabethan poet, says of Helen of Troy:
"Was this the face that launch'd a thousand ships
And burnt the topless towers of Ilium?
Sweet Helen, make me immortal with a kiss."
It is in the "opposites" that creativity sprouts, that an idea gains momentum and manifests itself in form. My favourite poet and mystic, Jalauddin Rumi writes:
"God created suffering and heartache so that
joyful-heartedness might appear through its opposite.
Hence hidden things become manifest through
opposites. But since God has no opposite, He remains hidden.
For the sight falls first upon light, then upon
color: Opposites are made manifest through opposites, like
white and black. .........
Know that form springs from meaning as the
lion from the thicket, or as voice and speech from thought.
Form was born from speech and then died. It
took its wave back to the sea.
Form comes out from Formlessness: Then it
returns, for "unto Him we are returning"
Make "opposites" an integral part of your art and design. It commands captivity and creates unity. It is what draws the viewer's eye into the canvas and helps movement in the space. Just the right amount of "opposites" engages the viewers' participation in comparing various elements of the work. The viewer sees the light and shadows of a painting, wide lines and thin lines, light-weight forms and heavy forms, filled spaces and unfilled spaces and so forth. Use size, value, color, type, texture, shape, alignment, direction, movement to take charge of the "opposites".
Mastering "opposites" is a lifelong pilgrimage that involves interpretation of functions, both tangible and intangible, physical, and psychological.
"For is and is-not come together;
Hard and easy are complementary;
Long and short are relative;
High and low are comparative;
Pitch and sound make harmony;
Before and after are a sequence."....... Lao Tzu, translated by Raymond R. Blakney.
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“Social media isn’t the end-all-be-all, but it offers marketers unparalleled opportunity to participate in relevant ways. It also provides a launchpad for other marketing tactics. Social media is not an island. It’s a high-power engine on the larger marketing ship.” Matt Dickman, technomarketer.typepad.com
It seems like, to counteract the virtual aspects of social marketing, trade shows have remained firmly within the confines of the 3 dimensions of our physical world. Trade shows are not only unique to meeting, greeting and collecting leads, they are the fierece battle gounds in business. It is one frontier where "the business value of Facebook and the other social media is still largely untapped " says Scott Wherley, vice president of global customer insights with Reed Expositions, one of the world’s largest event organizers. “Some companies are doing it well, but many are not making the most of this opportunity.”
Scott Wherley says, that some exhibitors are sending out tweets during the show, offering discounts on their products for those who come to their booth within a prescribed time (say, the next 30 minutes).
Since, social marketing is multi-channel and cross-platform, in the days and weeks leading up to the show, exhibitors are creating a buzz about the event on various channels. During the show, marketers are posting “Special Reports,” updating show attendees from the trade show floor about special sessions and surprises. The companies are posting blogs and tweeting several times a day, keeping their blog subscribers who were unable to attend the show in the loop as to what they’re missing — while creating fresh and compelling content, that amplifies SEO and generates prolonged awareness.
Dave Clarke, an award-winning editor, says, a physical trade show presence and a virtual presence are not mutually exclusive, though; in fact, just the opposite. "Ratcheting up your social media marketing, before, during, and after a trade show is proving one of the most effective ways to drive traffic to your booth and cement the relationships you’ve come there to forge."
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In his 1993 essay, The Coming Technological Singularity: How to Survive in the Post-Human Era, professor, science fiction writer and Hugo Award winner, Vernor Vinge mentions: Within 30 years, we will have the technological means to create superhuman intelligence. Shortly after, the human era will be ended. According to him, Homo sapiens will become dull bystanders in history of evolution. This view is in contrast with the famous futurist Ray Kurzweil, who believes that while artificial intelligence will make humans obsolete, it will not make our consciousness irrelevant. The singularity won't destroy us, Kurzweil says. Instead, it will immortalize us.
Perhaps, this is the reason why virtual trade shows and events have not kept up the same pace of acceleration as the digitization of our lifestyle. And according to the recent research, sponsored by Lynch Exhibits Inc., Impact Unlimited Inc., and Altus Corp, virtual events are unlikely to replace live trade shows and events anytime soon. In fact, 68 percent of respondents who have participated in virtual events say they’d rather host a live event, most notably because they “miss the energy of a live event“ and “attendees seemed less engaged during virtual events.”
"Whereas even a few short years ago, many exhibit and event professionals claimed virtual events were the future of our industry, it seems the novelty may have worn off — or perhaps the hurdles outweigh the perceived payoffs." 47 percent of the respondents personally felt that virtual events offer only “little” or “moderate” potential, while 10 percent believe they’re nothing more than a hype. I believe, this is where human consciousness come into play and virtual reality will never be able to simulate actual human interactions. In his 1989 book, The Emperor's New Mind, Oxford physicist Roger Penrose claims that the classical physics ruling neurobiology cannot explain consciousness. The mind, he declared, relies on the baffling mechanics of quantum physics. Most recently, physicist Efstratios Manousakis at Florida State University showed that certain peculiarities of visual perception are most easily explained by quantum mechanics.
If consciousness is indeed a quantum phenomenon, then virtual reality will have to wait for a long while for engineers, scientists and trade show exhibitors to get the hang of it.
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Architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe embraced the axiom "Less is more" to describe his creation of arranging the numerous forms into objects of extreme simplicity, by attributing every element and detail to serve multiple visual and functional purposes (such as designing a floor to also serve as the radiator, or a massive fireplace to also house the bathroom). Designer Buckminster Fuller adopted the engineer's goal of "Doing more with less", but he focused on engineering rather than aesthetics. A similar sentiment was adopted by industrial designer Dieter Rams' motto, "Less but better".
The maxim "More is More" was brought forth into mass consciousness in 2009 by the American pop recording artist Heidi Montag. "More is More" makes heavy use of synthesizers, specially the auto-tune software to alter Montag's voice. This is the key. "More is More" plays with the fabric of perception. Since the 1970s photographer Alex Webb has been exploring the visual over-load ability of his pictures: "It's not just that that and that exist. It's that that, that, that and that all exist in the same frame. I'm always looking for something more. You take in too much; perhaps it becomes total chaos. I'm always playing along that line: adding something more, yet keeping it short of chaos."
Hence the Anomaly.
Design can be an expression of extreme ascetic simplicity or it can be an overwhelming experience of shapes, colors and textures. In a trade show booth design it is an expression of that intangible emotional property more commonly known as the brand proposition. Chic Chocolates and Visa are 2 designs expressing the opposite modalites. Both designs are the grand expressions of their brand pshycology.
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In my writings I am often an explorer, a map maker, sometimes a voyager of the human mind and other times: a creator who is tormented by the inner longing to expand, express and delight !