Link About It: This Week’s Picks

Honey-covered portrait models, the Hubble turns 25 and a farewell to the real Rosie the Riveter in this week's look at the web


1. Happy Birthday Hubble

Today, 24 April 2015, the Hubble Telescope turns 25 years old. During its quarter-century, the Hubble has produced an incredible array of now iconic images, including the famous Hubble Deep Field—where the telescope aimed its lens at a tiny speck in space for 10 days, revealing thousands of galaxies. The Hubble has been an enormous aid to astronomers and has been hailed one of the most productive scientific instruments ever constructed. To celebrate Hubble’s birthday, The Guardian has rounded up some of its most remarkable images.

2. Japan’s Record-Breaking Maglev Train

Japan’s magnetic levitation (or maglev) train has broken the world speed record—again. The high-speed rail uses electrically charged magnets to hover the train over the tracks, reducing friction and allowing for increased speeds. Its most recent test run hit a record-breaking speed of 603km/h (374mph), surpassing its previous run of 590km/h. By 2027, Japan hopes to implement the lightning speeds of the maglev train in a route connecting Tokyo and Nagoya, cutting the current commute time to less than half while operating at 505km/h.

3. Honey-Coated Nude Portraits

Portrait photographer Blake Little’s newest photo series is sweet and sticky. Titled “Preservation,” Little’s new project involves dousing his nude subjects in gallons of honey before capturing them on film. The result is a striking image—all shimmering and sculptural as the honey encases the models in a thick layer of tacky goo. Though the exhibition of the photo series at Kopeikin Gallery in Los Angeles has ended, the full set of candy-coated nude images can be found in Little’s book, also titled “Preservation.”

4. What 170-Year-Old Champagne Tastes Like

Champagne connoisseurs now know what the oldest recorded champagne tastes like. Discovered five years ago in a Baltic Sea shipwreck, bottles of still-corked bubbly were finally popped open for taste-testers to try out. Through labels and branding still visible on the bottles, researchers were able trace them all the way back to the 1830s or 1840s, probably from the champagne houses of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin, Heidsieck and Juglar. Flavors are described as spicy, smoky and leathery with a 9% alcohol by volume.


5. VSCO Releases Free Film Pack

Photo editing software company VSCO has just released a free starter pack for its Film presets—great news for those wanting to upgrade from the mobile app to the full photo editing capabilities of the Film packs, but were hesitant to throw in the $119 for each set. The VSCO Film 00 pack includes the popular Kodak Gold 100 and Kodak Tri-X film emulation sets and are compatible with Adobe Lightroom 4 to 6. Check out some sample pictures on PetaPixel and download the free starter pack on VSCO.

6. Rebranding Weed

In 2010, Silicon Valley vets Michael Blue, Christian Groh and Brendan Kennedy left their their shiny tech offices to join the marijuana movement. At the time, cannabis was rapidly becoming more accepted as a legitimate medical treatment and, one by one, states were dropping their laws banning the substance, making opportunities in the burgeoning industry seem endless. The three started Privateer Holdings, a private equity firm that acquires and creates cannabis brands, and though many initially rebuffed their risky business move, the gamble has certainly paid off.

7. New Visual Identity for Norway’s National Parks

Scandinavia is known for its widespread design sensibility, but no country has embraced contemporary graphic design at the institutional level quite like Norway. After commissioning top graphic designers to modernize the visuals of their passports and banknotes, now the country’s national parks can boast of their own a href=”” target=”_blank”>acclaimed graphics design. Architecture and design firm Snøhetta—whose pixelated design was selected to appear on Norway’s money—brings a thoughtful yet minimalist styling to the design. A gateway-like arc acts as the main logo. With both curved and straight lines, the sloping of the base is a reference to the mountainous parks of the country. If you needed yet another reason to visit Norway’s fjords, let this be it.

8. Rosie the Riveter Model Dies at 92

Mary Doyle Keefe, the woman who posed for Norman Rockwell’s iconic 1943 painting “Rosie the Riveter” died yesterday at 92 years old. Keefe’s image was a symbol for the millions of women who went to work on the home front during World War II. She posed for Rockwell when she was just a 19-year-old telephone operator and, while she was a petite woman, Rockwell depicted her with a more burly figure in the “Rosie” painting to show undeniable strength. Rosie is still a commonly used symbol of feminism, and Keefe will surely live on for generations to come.

Link About It is our filtered look at the web, shared daily in Link and on Twitter, and rounded up every Saturday morning.