This week Awesome Stories brings you simplicity, jail art, affordable homes, garden beauty and hope.
Life is Easy?
Jon Jondai reminds us how simplicity can create a better quality of life. I’ve experienced the feeling of lightness and freedom from parring down my material possessions. In fact, for two summers, I lived out of a VW camper while traveling around the US National Parks. This was one of the most satisfying times of my life. Most of the developed world, myself included, spends too much time chasing money, materialism and external forms of happiness. However, unlike Jon, most of us don’t live in a lush warm climate where we can live in a village, grow our own food, build our own house and be supported by one simple crop.
What are your thoughts about this video?
Jail House Art
Jesse, Krimes, a 31 year old Philadelphia artist, made great use of his time in prison. Subjected to extreme isolation, he found a great way to not only survive, but thrive in prison by honing his artistic talents. He became the artist-in-residence, teaching art and painting portraits, earning currency, and remaining neutral to the tense racial and gang influences. With the earnings, he bought supplies for a bold art project on the sly. Jesse envisioned and created a giant mural, one panel at a time. He hand painted sheets, shipped them one at a time to his girlfriend, and assembled them into a giant mural upon his release from prison. And now, he’s working with the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program. Nice rehab Jesse!
Collapsible Solar Shelters!
This is a very cool idea. I don’t know if they are actually being produced, but I’d like one of these just for fun. These solar powered collapsible shelters were designed as a way to offer decent and portable housing to the millions of people that are displaced from their homes, often due to war or force. They offer privacy, portability, water and electricity, all in a very cool looking design that can be easily moved. Image source; Abeer Seikaly via Minds Unleashed.
Look at these gorgeous photos of garden pathway projects.
This is a wonderful story about a mother of a wheelchair bound child who helped create a harness that allows her son to walk for the first time. The Upsee harness is intended to allow enhanced movement for the children to stimulate social and physical development. It’s a harness that bonds the adult to the child with straps to enable the adult to help the child move. An Irish company, Leckey, has designed and produced the harnesses with sales just starting on the Firefly website.
Science Meets Nature
This is a great story about a 13 year old, Aidan Dwyer, who turned his curiosity into a science project that won him a provisional patent! Wandering the woods, Aidan noticed how tree branches reach out in patterns. Turns out nature is very efficient at capturing sunlight with its branch patterns. Mimicing nature using fibonacci sequences, Aidan created a tree-like solar cell array that yielded 20-50% more power. Very cool.
I love this creative re-purposing of plastic bottles to build homes in Nigeria. Unfortunately, they have millions of plastic bottles produced and disposed of daily, so using them for building homes solves two problems. People who need affordable homes and landfills overflowing with plastic. These homes are designed to be affordable, easy to build, fireproof and energy efficient. Check out the cool pictures of homes being built.
What touches your heart and brings a smile to your face? I’d love to hear from you. Blessings, Brad