SomethingDark

Latest somethingdark news

Developing a website such as SDk and the magazine it hosts takes time. That's why we think contributors and others interested in what we are doing deserve to be kept informed on our progress. This page has been designed to do exactly that: to keep you up-to-date as to where we are. We're pleased to have you with us.

Keep up-to-date: to be notified when the next issue of SomethingDark is out or when there is a significant update to the website, click here to join our mailing list.


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Breaking radio silence: SDk02 is launched!SDk Updates ->

Wed 19 Oct, 2011.

It’s been a long time since our last update and as the brand-new editorial of a certain online publication states, it’s been a long time between celebratory, issue-launch drinks. But all that has changed: SomethingDark 02 is out, and, with this milestone, we’re not looking back.

SDk02 represents a very significant step forward in technical development and the presentation of the magazine. And, of course, we think the photography, art and writing follows with the standard set by SDk01 and, really, would be hard pressed to be bettered.

It has, in fact, been a challenge to produce an encore to SDk01 with a team of two; some indication of this lies in the fact that email communications between Chris and Daryl became a document of 600 A4 pages (exactly) which is a word processing file of 3.3 Mb. But we’ve done it, and now we have secured some very experienced and capable editorial assistance from none other than SDk02’s literature writer, Marilyn Jaye Lewis....Read more

Radio silence: an SDk progress reportSDk Updates ->

Wed 06 Apr, 2011.

Today is the first day of the new UK financial year, and a fitting time for an update on what’s going on here at SomethingDark and what’s happening with the pending release of SDk02, which has set a new benchmark with regards to the challenge it’s posed to our two-man team. We know, as Britain stands on knobbly knees, relying on memories of a fading empire and clutching at straws to claw some of it back, excuses are too often pushed to the fore, and a little weak. So we hope our explanation is a little more substantial.

Much time over the last few months has been devoted to strategising for maintaining SomethingDark webMagazine in the long term, which includes the very finite area of finance and the fact that both Chris and Daryl have to work on other, bill-paying, projects to live in an ever-more-expensive country as well as make sure we stand strong in the event that any curve-ball heads towards the SDk venture....Read more

ANALYSIS and COMMENT (in two parts): Dark politics, economics, and the business of intervention in LibyaLatest News ->

14 & 20 Mar, 2011

The Libyan crisis is showing all the signs of embroiling the usual western powers in another warmongering scandal, so SomethingDark editor Daryl Champion refocusses on his specialty, Middle East politics, and looks at what might really be happening behind the scenes. In doing so, he hints at the economic motivations for intervention in Libya as a precursor to a number of articles in the forthcoming issue 2 of SDk magazine.

This two-part analysis-and-commentary is presented in a more classic blog style. Part 1 was written shortly before the UN Security Council passed resolution 1973 (2011) on 17 March, and takes somewhat of a satirical approach; part 2 was written shortly after UNSC 1973 (2011). Scroll down to the end of part 1 to read part 2, “Examining the US ‘about-face’ on war in Libya: geostrategics and regime change”.

We hope you find this analysis of contemporary Middle East politics an interesting addition to our Latest News section...Read more

Pens and Needles: an unusual exhibition in an unconventional galleryLatest News ->

Wed 02 Mar, 2011.

<i>Pens and Needles</i>: an unusual exhibition in an unconventional gallery

Strange sounds emitted from the building, as if a sequence depicting an alien planet from the soundtrack of a science-fiction film were being piped into the London night. The venue was London Miles Gallery in Notting Hill, and the alien noises, although very atmospheric and suited to an avant-garde gallery in a general sense, were not entirely in keeping with the theme of the exhibition that was in the full swing of its opening event.

Then the source of those sibilant sounds – the ethereal sighing, soft hissing and whooshing punctuated with metallic highlights – became clear: it wasn’t the office building that housed London Miles, but the traffic speeding along the elevated A4 under which the building was constructed, its concrete roof almost a part of the busy arterial road’s supporting structure. So no, it was not quite the soundtrack for an extraterrestrial world, but more of a soundscape for J.G. Ballard’s Crash, which not only complemented the gallery’s persona, but somehow did suit the mood of the event therein....Read more

We propose a toast to a true webMagazine: SomethingDark is iPad, tablet PC and mobile ready!SDk Updates ->

Thurs 24 Feb, 2011.

Our objective has always been to create a web-based cultural magazine at the forefront of technology as a platform for content of significance (as opposed to just another blog template presented as a “magazine”), and we are continuing to push the envelope in achieving this objective.

In early December we were delighted to launch a mobile version of SomethingDark – a project that had occupied us in mind for quite some time before we finally got around to putting it into action (see our SDk goes mobile! for 2 December 2010).

And now we can barely contain further glee in announcing that SDk magazine is iPad compatible. Which means, of course, that anyone with any of the devices sprouting on the burgeoning tree of new-generation tablet PCs can visit SDk webMagazine and view it as it was designed, exactly as it appears on a desktop or laptop PC.

Prost!

London gallery to examine and celebrate the culture of tattoo artLatest News ->

Wed 16 Feb, 2011.

London Miles Gallery will on 25 February open an exhibition not normally associated with the white-wall-and-plinth set, but then London Miles is not your garden-variety gallery that likes to take a “holier-than-thou” approach to art.

The exhibition in question is Pens and Needles, which will be a group exhibition celebrating and taking an in-depth look at all forms of tattoo art, lifestyle and culture. And it will be done with panache, which, apparently, is something for which the gallery is becoming known as it presents exhibitions of surrealist, pop, lowbrow, comic book and illustration art to a growing British following of discerning enthusiasts of these genres. London Miles Gallery’s mission, however, extends to “exhibiting, nurturing, and unearthing artists”.

Pens and Needles is, according to the gallery’s publicity, “the first UK art exhibition of its kind”, and aims to highlight the intersection of fine art and modern tattooing. In their words:...Read more

We expected better from the GuardianSDk Updates ->

Tues 08 Feb, 2011.

Shortlisted entries for the Guardian-sponsored MediaGuardian Innovation Awards (“Megas”) have just been announced and we’re not so much disappointed that we’re not on it as surprised that said shortlist is a virtual who’s who of the corporate world, relatively well- to well-established agencies, and high-profile campaigns.

For example, in the “On a budget” category, the shortlisted entrants include the production of some consumer-culture offering featuring heavily marketed new pop duo Hurts, produced by the agency FOAM/Sony Music Entertainment UK, for Hurts and RCA Records; and a campaign produced by Mindshare to lobby Transport for London over their congestion charge structure on behalf of their client, Volvo Cars UK.

In other words, completely, utterly commercial and mainstream: not entirely something we expected from the Guardian, especially considering the information disseminated about the awards, which gave the impression that genuine space is provided for genuinely small, independent players. Yes, we knew we were taking on the big time, but the scale of what we consider to be a farce is what we find surprising....Read more

‘Sex and Regulation’: seminar focuses on the excesses of the state, media and lobbyistsLatest News ->

Thurs 03 Feb, 2011.

A UK academic organisation, the Onscenity research network, hosted a seminar at the British Academy, London, on 1 February to draw attention to increasing state regulation of sex in relation to media, labour and the internet.

Julian Petley, professor of screen media and journalism at London’s Brunel University, chaired the seminar, and introduced it with his own presentation, “Censoring the image”. Petley is a veteran advocate of free speech, and he once again demonstrated his detailed grasp of a broad range of censorship and free speech issues in the United Kingdom.

Petley began his delivery with the sobering declaration that there were many UK laws limiting freedom of speech; he then tabled an overview of these laws, their history and their socio–legal impact today. He drew particular attention to the evolution and problems of the Obscene Publications Act (OPA), various child protection laws, and the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act (CJIA) 2008....Read more

Japan's island of art: a sublime museum experience worthy of pilgrimageLatest News ->

Wed 12 Jan, 2011.

Japan's island of art: a sublime museum experience worthy of pilgrimage

by Paul Cochrane

Viewing art is more often than not an urban activity. Galleries and museums don’t tend to be tucked away in forests or on small islands only accessible by ferry. Indeed, a remote island in Japan’s Inland Sea is not where you would expect to find a gallery devoted to Claude Monet’s Water Lilies series. Nor to be the location of what can only be described as a sublime museum experience.

But a remote location showcasing artistic masterpieces has the air of a pilgrimage about it as well as providing a more relaxed setting to ponder and appreciate the art you have traveled so far to see.

There was certainly a feeling of anticipation in the air as visitors boarded the ferry for the fifteen-minute ride from the mainland, around five hours by train from Tokyo, to the island of Naoshima. This is not a place that is on most visitors’ to-do list when visiting Japan, like including an afternoon to tour the Louvre when in Paris. Naoshima attracts the artistically inclined, whether architecture students staying at youth hostels near the port or well-heeled art aficionados checked in at one of the four hotels run by the Benesse Corporation....Read more

Past development paying off, more plannedSDk Updates ->

Tues 14 Dec, 2010.

Even on our little server, with SomethingDark crammed in with a few other websites, we’ve strived to make SDk as fast and as efficient as we possibly can, and, as you’ll see from the latest graph supplied by Google (click to view), with our most recent push we’ve finally managed to make the top 1% of websites with regards to loading times and performance.

Sure, there have been a few days of interruption or “oops, that didn’t work” along the way, but we’re finally there and aim to keep it that way. Then, if we manage to get the finance to upgrade to a new server (it’s on our “to do” list), we should be laughing – and so should the increasing number of visitors to SDk, who will see our pages load on their screen at a gratifyingly super-speedy rate....Read more