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Sexin' Up That Stogie With Custom Bejeweled Cigar Bands & Gold Ashtrays

Okay, so smoking cigars and spending money on bejeweled accessories for them are both pretty gauche, but that's what made these products so fascinating to me. Ysenberg specializes in the design and production of high value accessories in the world of cigars. Their point, in their words, is to realize and arrange the individual wishes of the customer.

The AURA by Motorola: A Mobile Phone Inspired By A Luxury Watch

The Motorola AURA phone distinguishes itself from other mobile phones with some very unique features in addition to being pretty darn pretty to look at.

The world's first to have a round, 16 million color sapphire crystal display screen, the stainless steel phone also has a fixed focus 2 megapixel camera, quad band internal antennae, EDGE technology, video capture and video playing capabilities, bluetooth, USB high speed, multimedia and standby talk time up to 400 hours. It even comes with the following game apps: RealDice Chess, RealDice Backgammon.

AURA™ by Motorola is a timeless, classically designed device that delivers a sensory experience that is second-to-none for those with refined taste. Combining an exquisite interface with superb craftsmanship inspired by high-end watches, AURA breaks convention and re-establishes artistry in the design and manufacturing of mobile devices. From the moment an AURA owner picks up his or her device they embark on a journey of discovery.

• not available in black.

An Exquisitely Performing Device, Designed to the Highest Standards

Drawing on inspiration, materials and techniques from luxury jewelers, AURA begins with the world's first 16 million color, circular display with more colors and sharper resolution than has ever been seen on a Motorola phone. The product's richness can literally be felt, from the weight of its stainless steel housing and the textures and patterns chemically-etched into its surface, to its Grade 1, 62-carat sapphire crystal lens, one of the most scratch-resistant materials on earth.

Key Features:
* World's first circular display on a mobile phone, 16 million color
* Chemically-etched textures and patterns
* Three tungsten carbon carbide coated main gears
* The main bearing is Swiss-made
* Protective PVD coating and mirror polish finish, same as used on luxury watches
* 130 precision ball bearings
* CrystalTalk™ technology
* Made from over 700 individual components
* Assisted-opening blade mechanism
* Stainless steel housing
* Scratch-resistant, 62-carat, Grade 1 sapphire crystal lens
* 300 ppi resolution display
* Stereo Bluetooth® technology

The Return of Artistry

AURA™ by Motorola

Price: $1,999.99

buy it here.

If the phone is sold out directly from the above dealer, in the US you can purchase it at select Bloomingdales stores in NY, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago.

A Symbol of Failure Inspires: A Round Up Of Twitter Fail Whale Art, Food, Tatts & Other Sightings

Yiying Lu is the artist behind the fast-becoming world wide known Twitter Fail Whale, the friendly aqua blue, white and orange image that appears on the social networking or microblog site, when their servers are down.

above: original fail Whale artist, the adorable Yiying Lu

As you can imagine, any icon that symbolizes 'failure' quickly gets mocked or altered as a result of creative frustration- and too many artists with cyber downtime on their hands. There have been contests like the Fail Whale Pail Ale label contest, there are flickr groups and you can buy "official" Fail Whale tee shirts and products on Zazzle.

What I wanted to share with you are some of the creative works inspired by the Fail Whale from fine art and cupcakes to lego versions and real tattoos. As well as some of the beer bottle label entries for The Fail Whale Pale Ale label contest. While there are hundreds, probably thousands, of funny 'modified' Fail Whales out there, here are just a few of the clever, talented and amusing homages and take-offs I enjoyed.

Painted Fail Whale by Dache :

on flickr

Mixed Media Fail Whale by Gio loves you:

on flickr

A nicely rendered 3D rendered image by Mugginz:

And by Stephen Allred:

and a lovely painted and airbrushed one by Diamondie:

Ringorang Fail Whale (vector Art) by Robbie da Kid.

The above four images are from Deviant Art.

A 3D model rendering:

found on the Southern GFX blog here

A great little 3D kinetic sculpture by Hilary Talbot:

found on MAKE

Lego Fail Whale by Bjarne P Tveskov of Denmark:

on flickr

A Twitter image mosaic of 100 photos by software architect Chris Craft:

on flickr

Nick Bilton's murdered Fail Whale:

on flickr

Drunk Fail Whale:

on flickr

Helicopter Fail whale:

on flickr

Paul RJ Muller "CaffiNation"'s beached Fail Whale:

on flickr

Martin Gee's (Hellvetica) illustrated Fail Whale reverses the roles:

on flickr

Tim Caynes' Graphics hardware Fail Whale:

on flickr

Burning Whale found on Hack A Day:

on flickr

and a more morose Hack A Day Fail Whale:

on flickr

A great little cartoon doodle by Nozzman of the Netherlands:

on flickr

Desktop art Fail Whale illustration by Gerardo Obieta:

on flickr

Lunch time embroidery doodlings of the Fail Whale by emdot:

on flickr

Fail Whale cupcakes by Sweet Libertine Cakes:

on flickr

and a birthday cake for Chris Darbro (RocknRollGeek):

on flickr

Adam's Fail Whale pumpkin carving:

on flickr

Sean O'Steen of The Fail Whale Fan Club 's Twitter Fail Whale on his Peggy (which is like lite-brite):

and he made a cute little felt and string Fail Whale mobile:

on flickr

Sand fail whale by Justine:

on Tasty Blog Snack

The 'Real Life Fail Whale' composite by Ed Hunsinger:

Jason of Gorilla Sushi created this Fail Whale Pale ale label entirely in photoshop for entry in the contest held last year by TweetHunt:

Another label entry by Dirtdirt of Austin:

on flickr

And another label entry by Georgene Nunn:

Unfortunately I have no idea who won and the original site no longer seems to function.

Some people love the Fail Whale so much, they're willing to go to their grave with it. Tom Rowe and Ryan Goff get tattooed by Hunter Spanks with Fail Whales in Baltimore:

See the video here.

Critter, also known as Korneliuz on Flickr, got himself a permanent fail whale:

Here's video of David Hoang drawing his "I Luv Fail Whale":

Believe it or not, Yiying was not paid directly for the image of the sweet looking whale being lifted from the ocean, tethered by birds - she originally posted the image to where the Twitter people fond it, purchased it and turned into a cultural icon. The illustration blog, Drawn, interviewed the artist, which you can read here.

Yiying Lu is a full-time artist who runs her own illustration and graphic design studio. She is also a design lecturer at the University of Technology Sydney, Australia. her personal site her flickr photostream

Relevant links:
What Is The Fail Whale?
Original Fail Whale artist's site
The Fail Whale fan club.
Official Fail Whale Online Store

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