A little bit of B&W

This a.m. - before I headed out to give a talk to design students at Humber College (thx again Jo!) - I discovered the snap below of an Ikea dining table that had been tricked out in a black and white checkerboard. I have to say, I like the look. The hi-contrast combo of b&w seems to be one of those trends that's on the rise again (or did it really ever go away?), so it's kinda fitting that recently I got to play around with the clean and minimally styled Olympus XZ-1 that just happens to come in a lovely white-lacquered body with black detailing. Gorgeous? Yes. And for all you photography wonks out there - It comes fitted with a super-bright built-in 4x Olympus iZUIKO lens, the first ever built-in Zuiko lens on a digital camera. Oh, and just in case white isn't your thing, the XZ-1 is also available in matte black. [Image 1: Ikea/Livet Hemma]


Cute, and still snappy at 50

Oh, I do love that touch of vintage, so I hafta say that the new Olympus Pen E-P1 camera in white has 'my cup of tea' written all over it. The Pen line of cameras debuted back in 1959, making the latest digital version - available in silver and black, as well as the yum white tint - the grand old age of fifty. Apart from the fact that there's no more fumbling with film, the Pen now comes jammed with all the latest technological bells and whistles and includes a slew of Art Filters. Oh, and if you're going for it, you might as well go all the way and spring for the white leather neck strap (don't forget the matching body jacket) shown in the shot below. Click here for more info, and click here to watch a series of short films on the Pen anniversary.

As for the original Pens well, just take a boo at the first image, they were quite the hit in the late 50's through into the 60's and are now a prized collectible. Oh, and when I stumbled across that second shot I knew I had to include it, it's a scan from one of the original Pen manuals teaching you 'how to hold a camera' (found here).