No canvas, no leather, just paper shoes

No canvas… no leather… just paper! The winner of a design contest sponsored by Teach for America and the U.T. LAB, the Lopez shoe by Christian Lopez features graffiti-inspired graphics on the brand’s Light Wing Franklin LT, Franklin HT, and Trainer models. The super-lightweight shoes are made from paper-like Tyvek, a material often found in mailers and house wrap. Combined with a poliyou insole and EVA foam rubber outsole, it’s durable waterproof, washable and impossibly light at just 1 pound per pair! Via

Be still my beating heart, you can now make GIFs directly from YouTube

Dreams DO come true. This feature isn’t live on every channel, but luckily It’s Okay To Be Smart is one of the first to test this new feature from YouTube.

If you want to make a GIF of a video, here’s what you do:

1. Find the thing you want to GIF
2. Click “Share” beneath the video on the watch page
3. Click GIF, move the sliders, add text if you want to
4. Profit

You can find this feature on lots of our favorite channels, so if you’ll excuse me I have some GIFs to go make.

Share your creations with me by tagging them with #itsokaytobesmart or hollerin’ at me on Twitter! via 

Survey Results: What Agents, Editors and Art Directors Look For Online

By Debbie Ridpath Ohi

In prep for my workshop at CANSCAIP's Packaging Your Imagination, I asked literary agents, editors and art directors a few questions about whether they research potential clients, authors and illustrators online and what they look for. 18 editors (some of whom also look for picture book illustrators), 8 agents and 2 art directors responded.

Here's what they said:

QUESTION: When you are considering taking on a new client/author/illustrator, do you ever research them online?

77% of respondents said that when they are considering taking on a new client, author and illustrator, they ALWAYS research them online. The rest said they sometimes do.

QUESTION: If you do online research before signing on a client/author/illustrator, has your research ever made you decide NOT to sign them on?

62% said that YES, they have decided to reject someone after researching them online. Some said that while they hadn't yet rejected someone after online research, they would definitely think twice about signing with someone who posts a lot of negativity (see below) or posts "with cringe-inducing syntax."


In this section, I invited respondents to volunteer additional comments, including turn-ons and turn-offs, what they look for during online research.

The following respondents gave me permission to use their names.

Christie Harkin, Consultant Publisher at Clockwise Press:

"I have been turned off by authors/illustrators who bad-mouth their editors/publishers/agents. It is amazing to me when I see this on Facebook. Even if you don't mention your editor/publisher by name, it is usually very obvious to whom you are referring. I would definitely think twice about taking on someone who did this. Also, I look for authors/illustrators who are generous in sharing news about others in the community. People who only post promo about their own books (BUY MY BOOK! LOOK AT MY STUFF!) are not generally as well-received or connected with the larger community. If you are a new or emerging creator, you need to be engaging with others who are also plugged in to the kidlit world."...more 

MUSIC: Petite Noir - Chess

MUSIC: All We Are - Keep Me Alive

MUSIC: Wild Beasts - Soft Future / Blood Knowledge


ILLUSTRATORS - A Documentary

Is this the reason why in the world of publishing, journalism, media, illustration is used so often? Be it the cover of a book, or the fact it matches an article, or that it allows to make an infographic or commercial, illustration, still or animated, it has become the key to success and awareness of a variety of newspapers and magazines.

But who lies behind the image? An illustrator, naturally.

The work of a freelance illustrator is a "new" job, especially in Europe, also if from some perspectives it could be considered as ancient as printing. Nowadays illustrators are recognized at an international level, they earn a lot, and travel to find new sources of inspiration.

How do you become an illustrator? How does an image come to life? How much time does it take to create a personal and recognizable style? What steps do you have to take to become famous and work for magazines, websites and international newspapers?

ILLUSTRATORS is a documentary that asks these questions to four Italian artists, who are wide world famous and have been awarded many prizes and recognitions: Alessandro "Shout" Gottardo, Emiliano Ponzi, Olimpia Zagnoli and Francesco Poroli. Four people who, through talent and technology, have managed to pursue their dream.

Wild Beasts GIF collab with Mattis Dovier

Wild Beasts have recently collaborated with artist Mattis Dovier to create a GIF-novel set to two of their unreleased tracks.

The project forms part of The Jameson Works, a new initiative created by Jameson Irish Whiskey to celebrate and “share the stories behind modern craft, and spread the knowledge of how great craftsmen work today.”

Parisian artist Mattis worked on the visuals for the GIF-novel, which will be accompanied by two unreleased Wild Beasts tracks and released online on 10th December. A short film revealing the story behind their working process – creating GIFs and remixing the tracks ‘Soft Future’ and ‘Blood Knowledge’, which Wild Beasts have taken apart and reformed into a soundtrack...more