Under the Sea at Antwerp Aquarium

Antwerp has one of the best placed zoos imaginable, right behind the beautiful Antwerp Central station, and you can’t even hear the trains. In the zoo lies the newly refurbished aquarium, which contains the second largest coral reef tank in Europe. I was lucky enough to visit in April for an article with Flanders Today, just as the paint was drying and the pictures below were being taken. The article is available here (opens in new tab). Images below are © ZOO Antwerpen / Jonas Verhulst.

 

Antwerp Zoo can be followed at @zooantwerpen.

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Come2Dance: A Dance Class for People with Neuro-Degenerative Illnesses in Antwerp

In October I had the pleasure of interviewing Dirk Beckers and Sandy Kools, two of the most inspiring people that I have met in a long time. They have both suffered from Parkinson’s disease for ten years, and recently started the first dance class in the Antwerp region for people with neuro-degenerative illnesses. The class is called Come2Dance and is hosted by the Easy Moving dance studio, which also offers dance classes for people in wheelchairs. Together, Beckers and Kools overcame seemingly impassable bureaucratic barriers to get the class started, and their tale is one of determination, passion, and a positive attitude.

The effects of the class are wonderful to see, as it is clear that the simple movements and gradual progression help with coordination, and get people doing things that would normally be far more difficult. The dance instructor, Andreas Braaten, is a physiotherapist who has experience with Parkinson’s sufferers, which affords him better knowledge of their abilities and limitations. Come2Dance is also a great way to meet people that are going through, and understand, similar problems.

If you have a neuro-degenerative illness and live in or around the Antwerp region, or if you know anyone who does, this is definitely something that is worth a try.

For more information, my article on Come2Dance for Flanders Today can be read here, and take a look at the Easy Moving website here.

The classes are held at Menegemlei 30, 2100 Deurne, and the Easy Moving dance studio can be contacted at info@easymoving.be.

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Interview with Antwerp Fashion Entrepreneur, Ruben Opheide

I recently had the opportunity to visit Ruben Opheide at his office in Antwerp for an interview. A young entrepreneur and fashion designer, he used Kickstarter to launch a new label (Ruben O) which offers affordable, custom-made trousers to the everyday person. And they’re available online. We talked about the environment, and how the pollutive way that we buy our clothes affects it. We also discussed hopes that the clothing industry will one day come full-circle and return to the glorious days of only offering custom-made clothing. It’s a big idea, but he’s realistic, and knows that it’s something that would take far more than one company to accomplish. Ruben also told me about the way that 3D printing will change the world once it can be done with other materials like metals and stronger plastics. He clearly knows his industry, but his knowledge permeates not only fashion, but logistics and production too.

Now, about the actual trousers. They’ll be available in casual, business, and golf styles ranging from black to lime green. The Kickstarter funds will be used to create a configurator, like those on the websites of high end car companies, where you’ll be able to place buttons, zips and pockets to suit your own tastes. This is excellent for the many people out there who find only one or two brands make trousers that properly fit them, if any. Rather than being limited to those brands, an affordable and customisable option means that a long lasting pair of trousers is obtainable in any style you want.

Pre-orders on Kickstarter range from 119 to 129 Euros, and prices after launch are expected to be in the range of 150-175 Euros.

For more information on the Ruben O label, read my article here. Once that’s done, order yourself a pair of the trousers here.

 

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Portfolio of Articles in Print Now Available

A Portfolio of my articles that have been published in print is now available for download here. The portfolio contains 26 articles published in Kensington and Chelsea Today (London, England) and Flanders Today (Flanders, Belgium). It has an interactive contents table for easy navigation, and articles have been picked out for easy reading.

If you would like a piece written for your publication, or if you would simply like to discuss any of the pieces in the portfolio, send a message to Daniel@slamcopy.com.

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Article on the Holy Family Parish for Flanders Today

The first SLAMcopy article commissioned by Flanders Today was posted online on 29 May 2014! It covers the Holy Family Parish in Antwerp, an English speaking Roman Catholic church, that welcomes people from all corners of the world. They have a modern approach to Mass, and a lively and vibrant congregation.

Read the article here: http://www.flanderstoday.eu/living/all-welcome-antwerps-only-english-speaking-mass

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Film and book reviews published on Misscliks.com!

Misscliks is a great website with a very positive aim; to uplift and promote women in the gaming industry and geek society. The industry in previous decades has been male dominated, and largely geared toward a male audience, but there is finally an online place for geeks and gamers with the idea of gender equality at its core.

I have the joy of being a member of the first group of writers for the website, and working on the Geek Culture section. I mostly write film and literature reviews, and my posts so far can be found below.

Film Reviews

Gravity Blu-Ray Review: http://www.misscliks.com/film-review-gravity-blu-ray/

Divergent Review: http://www.misscliks.com/film-review-divergent/

Snowpiercer Review: http://www.misscliks.com/film-review-snowpiercer-directed-by-bong-joon-ho/

 

Book Reviews:

Prince of Thorns: http://www.misscliks.com/book-review-prince-of-thorns/

The Fractal Prince: http://www.misscliks.com/sci-fi-book-review-the-fractal-prince-hannu-rajaniemi/

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SLAMcopy Launches!

On the 10th of April the SLAMcopy website went live. SLAMcopy is a copy writing, editing, and proofreading business based in Antwerp, with an international market.