Inspirational websites

Source: Taipei 2013 Literature Festival

Source: Taipei 2013 Literature Festival

These are websites which inspire me everyday when I do or need to find places to gather my inspiration. Note, I’m biased toward a lot of Chinese creative culture, but I believe it has the potential on becoming one of the fastest growing markets in the world.

Art, fashion, and design:

  • Neocha: http://edge.neocha.com. A growing clearinghouse of a growing movement of the Chinese underground art and design movement (ranging from illustration, art, paintings, animation, music, products, etc.). Great website for those who are interested in Chinese creative youth culture.
  • CreativeRoots. http://creativeroots.org/ . An art and design blog showing photos of designers work throughout the world which represent each country’s unique culture.
  • Design Taipei Cheers! http://www.taipeidesign.org.tw/index.aspx. Taipei is set on becoming the World Design Capital of 2016! The city government is actively doing and promoting lots of events in Taipei uniting government institutions  designers, and citizen group to use design as a way of creating exciting lifestyles as well as a driving force for creating sustainable cities! Be warned, this site will lead you to a lot of other sites as their illustrators and graphic designers do an AMAZING job at presenting Taipei as a colorful city through the images it has on this website.
  • Goods of Desire. http://www.god.com.hk/ Hong Kong Based Lifestyle Brand and Design Company. They sell everything from clothes, kitchenware, furniture, homeware, and even get commissioned to do interior/exterior design projects (their clients have included Starbucks and Cathay Pacific!) that attempt to brand Hong Kong’s unique identity as a mixture of East and West, so that people become really excited about design!
  • CoSpace CoCreate Video Series. https://www.youtube.com/user/pmqdesign Great series of videos highlighting different types of designers in Hong Kong, from organic gardening (beehives!), upcycling designers, fashion, to shoe design, it shows how design can be extremely grassroots and can empower people to be able to make their own things again.
  • Nuandao (http://www.nuandao.com/) Chinese e-commerce website which sells designer products, started out a few years ago! The layout reminds me a lot of a mixture between ebay and Pintetrest If you want to see arts and culture, the transition from “Made in China” to “Designed in China”, this is the place to go. The website tries its best to promote independent Chinese designers. See an interview here 
  • Moko. http://www.moko.cc/ Awesome Chinese fashion and photography showcase website.
  • Behance: http://www.behance.net/ Portfolio showcase for all sorts of different designers and artists
  • Pinkoi: Taiwanese design website showcasing designers and their products (http://www.pinkoi.com/)
  • White Rabbit Collection: Contemporary Chinese Art Collection  (http://www.whiterabbitcollection.org/)

Awesome companies/people/organization to consider working for:

  • China Youthology: Amazing market research, ethnography company based in Beijing and Shanghai which focuses on Chinese youth culture: their goal: empower youth through research so that institutions, businesses and organizations so that they can better serve them. Their clients have included Google, Intel, L’oreal, BMW, and even Lays Chips. When you visit their website, you’ll instantly feel the youthly feeling of the organization! (http://chinayouthology.com/en/) | My blog post review on the firm (here)
  • MIT Sensable Cities Lab: Research lab housed under MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning focusing on using technology & maps, as well as compelling visualizations to solve our urban areas biggest problems. (http://senseable.mit.edu/)
  • Tricia Wang, PhD, ethnographer and sociologist focusing on the impact of technology in our everyday lives: She has done a lot of amazing research in China and Mexico, which she has blogged, Instagammed in detail in her blog( http://triciawang.com/
  • China MegaCitiesLab: Research center on China based at Columbia University. (http://www.china-lab.org/)

Music:

  • Douban Music (http://music.douban.com) Amazing collection of indie artists throughout Mainland China
  • Douban.fm (http://douban.fm/): Chinese version of Pandora.
  • Gukak (Korean Traditional Music Station) . Probably one of the best radio stations I’ve heard that gives a glimpse of older, traditional music of Asia. More specificially, Korea. They even have sometimes played a lot of fusion, Eastern-Western Pieces, ranging from classical to rock. I’ve always been trying to find a way to purchase some of the mp3s they play, but alas I am not fluent in Korean to find where to play their music.

Professional Development & Personal Development:

  • 99u: Professional development for creatives 
  • Art of Manliness: Personal development, self-improvement blog for males. Great resource for all guys, who want to be better role models and leaders.
  • zenhabits: Great blog on how to live a more simplier, clutter free life.
  • Cal NewPort Summary: “Don’t follow your passion. It really doesn’t matter what career you do. You need to be really good at what you do in order to live a cultivating life, regardless of what your passion is.”
  • Chris Gullibeau: How to rule the world and not conform to it. He’s traveled to almost all countries throughout the world and has some very valuable life lessons.
  • Scott Young: Great life hacker and focus on making your life better in terms of productivity
  • Tiny Buddha: “Tiny Buddha is about reflecting on simple wisdom and learning new ways to apply it to our complex lives–complete with responsibilities, struggles, dreams, and relationships.”
  • Castles In The Air: One of my favorite, self-improvement blogs ever. Her focus: seek truth in your life. Have clear intentions. Truth, truth, truth. Are we really being ourselves?

Sustainability / Urban Planning 

Favorite TEDxTalks:

Study Chinese in Taiwan:

For anybody who is interested in studying abroad in Taiwan, I highly recommend NOT applying through your home university because their study abroad programs often charge higher prices/rates for a lot of administrative fees, etc. In fact, I highly recommend applying directly toward the university or the specific language program at the university, as they are significantly much more cheaper and affordable. See this article on China and study abroad for more details. 

Tourism/Travel/Lifestyle in Taiwan:

  • Taipei 543 ; started by several Taiwanese Americans; lifestyle, travel, and food blog on Taipei. Taipei is really an underrated city!
  • MyKafaesqueBlog: One of the best photoblogs about Taiwan, more specifically Taipei. Highly recommended
  • Good Day Taipei: Great blog by an American expat turned NTU Student documenting and photographing her life in Taipei as a student.
  • 591.com : Need to find a place to rent in Taiwan? 591 is your best source. Note: the website is in Chinese.
  • Budget airlines flying out and to from Taipei

Job hunting in Asia:

Advice/tips: 

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