June 28, 2012

Bits & Pieces.

Ummm…Thursday, how’d you get here so quickly?! Good. Night. Things have been so busy with work (I got a promotion!) and art journaling (updates coming soon! ish!) and the impending Top Secret Project (ok...it’s a not-so-secret bridal shower I’m co-throwing for my cousin on Saturday, whatever) that it's safe to day I’ve felt pretty distant from the online world. Err, the world in general. ANYWAY. I hope you’re having a great week and things are going swimmingly. If they’re not, I hope they’re on the up and up, yo. Here’re a few things I’m loving this week:
1. Kind of loving this handmade deer top from Supayana. That floral print + ruffle sleeves...yesiDO. Her clothing is so beautiful, and her kids' line is SO CUTE. If ever I were to have a child *shivers* I would definitely shop for my little one here.  
2. RUN TO YOUR NEAREST BARNES&NOBLE AND GRAB A COPY OF THE LAB MAGAZINE. That's it. Their website is under construction, but you can see excerpts of interviews they've done from issues past. Faves from the current issue: Autumn de Wilde & Charlie Fink interview King Charles, Adam Brody interviews Greta Gerwig, Noomi Rapace interviews Mads Mikkelsen, Wes Anderson interviews Willem Dafoe, Judy Greer is all over the place...I can't even. You're welcome. 
3. I got some West Coast love from my girl Cara this week; totally brightened my life! She's the sweetest. 

What I Hope You Did A Month Ago
Because I GUARANTEE This Will Happen Before Your Interview
4. Looking for a job? Find more hilarious/helpful graphics like these to prepare you for interviews and essentially, get hired. 

5. Brooklyn Tweed's latest lookbook, Wool People 3, is out and the patterns couldn't be more incredible! My favorite knits are the Corrina top and Breckon cardigan. PS it's 110degrees outside right now. PS I still don't know how to knit, but whatever! 

6. Did you know that Pixar employees have 'Kilt Fridays'? I wish my job had themed dress days...probably not kilts though...

7. Here are some songs that've been stuck in my head this week (except the album version of RAGC is a lot more fun, I think). Also, I'm really stuck on Grace Potter & the Nocturnals' newest album, The Lion The Beast The Beat (which I owe my knowledge of to Christine for tweeting about its awesomeness!). Music is so beautiful, and I swear I don't just jam depressing stuff all day (: Happy Thursday friendlies.

soundbites by jsimcity on Grooveshark

June 26, 2012

If you're into photography...

...you should definitely check out the work of Taryn Simon, if you haven’t already. Why? First of all, she has one of the coolest names. Ever. More importantly though, a friend of mine recommended her the other day and I’ve been obsessed ever since! Her most recent installation is exhibiting at The Museum of Modern Art in NY, called A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters…and it’s blowing my MIND.
This TED talk says it all
I was talking to said friend the other day about how, if I were to ever get into a more ‘serious’ realm of photography, like actually learn as much as I possible can about my camera and then use those skills (you’re only as good as your knowledge of your tools, amiright?) I’d love to do portrait photography, just for the hell of it. I loveloveLOVE the work of people who do collections of strangers’ portraits, etc. In Simon’s case, A Living Man is a documentation of various bloodlines around the world, all chosen for different reasons. Her format is just perfect (that’s a pathetic attempt but honestly the best word I can come up with at this point): a panel of lineage portraits, a second panel of text detailing said portraits, and a third panel of “footnotes”, as she calls them; photos of other items that enhance or further explain the story within the family or conflict. I’m just…just…ahhhh! Her use of visual and textual media to create such a staunch yet powerful narrative are equal parts nauseatingly beautiful and awe-inspiring. Simply put, this woman is amazing.

So far, my favorite collections are (obviously) A Living Man, as well as The Innocents, which is a portrait collection of men and women convicted of crimes they didn’t commit. Her ability to compose such a compelling narrative with each photo WITHOUT even the sentence-long description is so fascinating. Two other bodies of work definitely worth checking out: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, and Contraband. This TED talk gives a lot more insight on An American Index as well as The Innocents.

Sidenote: Simon has gained access to some of the most off-limits places in the world. I mean, the WORLD. She photographed Fidel Castro [slide 2] in 2003 (something I still can't get over) as well as the interior of his Palace of the Revolution[slide 1], AS WELL AS the wall between Israel and the West Bank [slide 13]. My brain is kind of bursting right now so I'm going to revisit the subject at a later time, but do yourself a solid and check this woman out!  

June 23, 2012

Summer of looooove / 1

So I mentioned Thursday that I'm taking an online art journaling/night photography class (three days in and I'm in LOVE, btw). I finally decided on the yellow book for this journal, and I'm so happy with it! I'm also lovin' the laid back, goatyourownpace vibe of this class, but of course, every new prompt is turning me more and more into a journaling/photographer hermitlady, haha. OK NOT REALLY. I'm just loving the heck out of the process and can't get enough. Here's what I've done so far.
Back cover with my favorite quote for this season / Frontcoveroflove
Dedication page / Introduction
Photo 1: Self portrait / Intro retraction-ish
A few shots using my sunglasses as a filter to be incorporated throughout the book

That's where I'm at so far! I've taken a few night shots and am working on other pages right now...ahhh I'm so excited to see where this project takes me. I've already got so many awesome ideas beyond the class prompts that have me SUPER STOKED FOR MY LIFE. But seriously. I hope you're having a great weekend!

June 21, 2012

Bits & Pieces.

1. I'm completely fascinated by these prints of fallen-tree cross-sections. I would LOVE that red one as a giant print for my wall! Read more about the man behind the process here, or buy the book here
2. Pretty much in love with this skirt from Donning Vintage. Ohhh the outfits I've already dreamed up! 
3. These cute little stamps from Blossom Stamps! My favorites are the bee, the camera, and the pincushion, but the shop is full of sooo many others I'd love to add to my collection. She also carries ink pads, so it's like a one-stop shop for all your mini stamping needs! Haha.
 4. These ADORABLE handmade shorts look soooooo comfy, and the print is just...I can't handle it. Want. On. My. Person. Like yesterday. But they're not my size, so someone else buy them up and make me super jealous! Please!
5. This article about the incredible and incredibly tragic life of 50s actress Dorothy Dandridge. She fought against so many stereotypes, prejudices, and personal traumas and yet managed to carve out a career for herself. I'd honestly never heard of her before reading this, and after watching the first ten minutes of her biggest hit Carmen Jones (embedded in the article), I just kept watching. Except parts 3 and 7 are missing, but I got the gist. The operatic dub is pretty hilarious. ALSO LET ME JUST SAY THAT HARRY BELAFONTE IS COMPLETELY GORGEOUS AND a little insane in this movie. But mainly gorgeous. And Dandridge, of course, is stunning. Just read the damn article. 
6. I'm SO PUMPED because I signed up for Kara's Summer of Love art journaling class, which starts TODAY. One of the supplies on the list was a vintage book (the core of the whole project, duh)and I couldn't bring myself to cut up any of the ones I had so I ventured out to my friendly neighborhood thriftstore and this is what I came away with! Now I can't decide WHICH ONE TO USE. They're all so beautiful...they'll probably all end up as art journals or albums at some point, but which to use now...hmmm. This class is going to be so much fun though!
7. Summer playlist-ish.

June 19, 2012


I picked this up on a thrift run a few days ago while questing for the Perfect Vintage Book to turn into an art journal. DON'TFREAKOUT this beauty's not going anywhere...I flipped through the pages and um, there are projects in here that I would LOVE to do. Like tie-dye, accordion picture books, paper lanterns, silhouette portraits, wooden looms...this is a children's book.  Maybe that makes me a crazy twelve year old in 1952, but I can live with that. My absolute favorite part though, was the foreword by the author. AMEN.

June 18, 2012

50 ways to leave your lover.

Kidding! More like 67 reasons why you love your father. And first off, let me just say that my dad is a really difficult man to shop for. Ahem.

I can breeze through birthdays or holiday gifts for friends and family no problem, but come Father’s Day, October 15th, or Christmas, the question as to what to get or make for my dad leaves me stumped until the last minute. Every. Single. Time.

He’s a carpenter, a builder of things. He doesn’t wear ties and isn’t into watches or shoes or fancy leather wallets. He doesn’t really go fishing that often, and is basically equipped with everything he needs in that department. Any tool or building-related whathaveyou he could possibly need is undoubtedly out of my pricerange, and I’m sorry, but I can’t just grab a Home Depot gift card and call it a day (weird because I love getting giftcards but I haaaaate giving them).

My mom, on the other hand, is extremely easy to shop/make for. It seems like every special day devoted to her is really celebrated, planned out, etc. but my dad just kind of gets the bad end of the deal, when really, he deserves SO MUCH MORE PRAISE AND RECOGNITION THAN HE GETS.

And then I made that mini album for Mother’s Day, and I knew this Father’s Day creation had to be something REALLY special. And that it would also probably take the form of a book.

I’ve been crushin' on Elise’s minibooks (go buy her summer one; there’s plenty of summer fun left to document!) for a little while now and thought it would be the perfect format to work with, especially since I recruited my three siblings for Project Dad (binder rings make organizing pages SO much easier). I tweaked Elise’s design so that the final product was a 6x7” (not 4x6”) book bound with 1.5” binder rings. Our theme was I Love You Because…, and almost every page reflected one of the bajillion reasons why we love our daddy so much, with a few quotes, bits of scripture, jokes, and photos in between.
Since this was kind of a rush job (I had the idea/hit the ground running with it last Wednesday, and it just so happened that everyone else was working nights, etc so it was a rough situation of bad timing) we came up with the top 67 reasons (hence the front cover) of why we love him. The book ended up being 80+ pages front and back in length and we used everything from scrapbook paper and stamps to vintage book pages and brown paper bags. There were also a few transparent pages as well as an envelope insert. It was fun to experiment, and to collaborate with my siblings on a massive creative project…Friday night, my two sisters and I holed up on my side of the room, floor covered in craft supplies, listening to music, and laughing hysterically every time our brother would bring us more of his pages (his were all HILARIOUS; stupid family inside joke type stuff, but we were DYYYING haha. My brother is the comedian- he gets that from my dad).

We really loved the way the book came together, and I don’t think anyone loved it more than the man of the hour. Here are a few of my favorite pages from the book:
My dad works for UPS. What can brown do for you?
Left: my brother's ridiculous humor / Right: my sister goes chevron crazy
More of my brother's handiwork, haha. Silly goose.
One of my youngest sister's spreads...Bear Grylls jokes never get old around here.
True story. So now you know what kind of deodorant I use, and my dating pre-reqs; and knowledge is power, or something.
 Left: by my sister. This is a classic Brian face- I think I get my crazyfacemaking from him / Right: broseph's classic twist on the #YOLO trend ... bahaha.  
L: by my sister. He pays for her school and bought her a car, but mainly she loves him because he bought her a sandwich, ha.
Front of a mini page (again, UPS reference...)
Left: back of the mini page / Right: transparency insert (somuchfunaaah)
Left: by the brother / Right: envelope insert which is kind of seriously my favorite thing
Lotion is a Silence of the Lambs reference waiting to happen. And I have dry skin, courtesy of my father. So.
I hope y'all had a great weekend! Besides celebrating my dad for the rad person he is, I also went swimming for the first time this year (FINALLY) and watched Alien. Like, the 1979 original. Totally called Ian Holm's character as Prometheus' version of David. The robot is always way too sketch and docile. And if that's your natural temperament, be prepared for me to always assume that you're probably a robot too. As long as you don't plan to experiment on/sacrifice me for the sake of science, especially anything extra-terrestrially related, I'll love you forever. The end. 

June 17, 2012

This guy.

This is one of my favorite photos of me and my dad, taken at the Houston Zoo in July of '91. I mean, what's NOT to love? The pleated acid-washed shorts, the tucked in United Way tee, that serious early 90s 'stache, me hanging over the side of his neck like a baby monkey...I mean really. 

But seriously, I love this guy so much. I can honestly say he's one of my best friends (and also the best at giving directions/navigating in general. Guy's got it DOWN, which is good, because I'm clueless) and the most honest, hard-working man I've ever met. Sure, I'm biased. That's allowed.  

Happy Father's Day to all the dads and dads-to-be! I hope you guys are celebrating in style. 


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