Archive for the ‘creativity’ Category

holy shit, these shoes are so fantastic:

am also wild about this silhouette for the summer, from ysl resort 2011:

it’s like the grown-up version of low rise pants + belly shirt (i’m not the only one who wore some variation of that outfit throughout highschool, right?), a way to show summer skin without being summer trashy, and also is much more flattering than previous incarnations of midriff-baring ensembles.

a final thought, is that i recently started volunteering at a arts program for adults with developmental disabilities, and it’s really really wonderful, and has also gotten me back into making art regularly, which i haven’t been doing in a while. the emphasis at the program is about process and mindfulness, not a finished product, and while it’s easy to remember that it’s the making and not the thing that’s important when painting with low-functioning individuals (most of their work isn’t even a little bit figurative, it’s mostly swaths of muddy color and no one really bothers to take any pieces home), the rest of us tend to be really hard on ourselves. it’s bad elementary school art teachers’ faults, really, for conditioning us to create with an end result in mind instead of making art for the feeling and the experience. so, friends, i encourage you to paint with your eyes closed, to collage with color instead of form, to sculpt with your feet, and to embrace your inner pollack. it will come out ugly but it won’t matter, the best art experience is like meditation anyway. do it do it

[ stefanie ]

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Dumdeedum, lazy Saturday spent watering plants, cleaning, doing other tasks I’ve otherwise put off… including watching some Say Yes to the Dress, the TLC show that follows brides as they shop for their wedding gear at Kleinfeld in Manhattan.  As reality TV goes, it’s not a particularly brilliant show (The Real Housewives of NY has really stepped it up this season… especially that last episode with Kelly-gone-psycho and Bethenny’s high-larious “46 pinot grigios” comment), but I still get hooked.  It reminded me of this one Gatsby-esque wedding dress that I liked at J. Crew, which sadly is no longer for sale.  In an attempt to find something similar, I google-imaged “Great Gatsby wedding” and stumbled upon Once Wed, a photograph-rich blog chronicling, among other things, hipster theme weddings.  It has to be seen to be believed.

Josh Goleman behind the lens for Great Gatsby wedding

their wedding is in a forest?!

circus wedding!

…really? really? I love that these people have avoided the cheese of 99.99% of all weddings.  It’s so artsy fartsy and dreamy and in the countryside and blah blah. Fantastical.


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i haven’t been the biggest fan of john cage since i was in high school, when the boy i was dating performed 4’33” at our senior solo recital and i was so embarassed to have been dating the kid who stood on stage in silence for almost five minutes that i thereby rejected all avant-garde composers.



high school biases notwithstanding, it turns out john cage is, in fact, a worthwhile figure to acquaint oneself with. i love this reaction he had to opinions of 4’33”:


They missed the point. There’s no such thing as silence. What they thought was silence, because they didn’t know how to listen, was full of accidental sounds. You could hear the wind stirring outside during the first movement. During the second, raindrops began patterning the roof, and during the third the people themselves made all kinds of interesting sounds as they talked or walked out.


this recording posted exerpts from john cage’s indeterminacy this morning. read them!


One of Mies Van der Rohe’s pupils, a girl, came to him and said, “I have difficulty studying with you because you don’t leave any room for self-expression.” He asked her whether she had a pen with her. She did. He said, “Sign your name.” She did. He said, “That’s what I call self-expression.”


When Colin McPhee found out that I was interested in mushrooms, he said, “If you find the morel next spring, call me up, even if you only find one. I’ll drop everything, come out, and cook it.” Spring came. I found two morels. I called Colin McPhee. He said, “You don’t expect me, do you, to come all that way for two little mushrooms?”


Five years later, when Schoenberg asked me whether I would devote my life to music, I said, “Of course.” After I had been studying with him for two years, Schoenberg said, “In order to write music, you must have a feeling for harmony.” I explained to him that I had no feeling for harmony. He then said that I would always encounter an obstacle, that it would be as though I came to a wall through which I could not pass. I said, “In that case I will devote my life to beating my head against that wall.”


when i was a freshman in college i took a course on the history of modern dance taught by a woman who had danced with merce cunningham, john cage’s lovah and creative collaborator. i wish i could remember my professor’s name — louise, maybe — but far more vivid in my memory is her adamant refusal to wear a bra, ever, and her sorta icky smell. anyway, she was old and fairly crazy, often telling us to “float like seaweed” and leading us through the hallways with ribbons and sheets of chiffon. one day, we were all sitting in the room waiting for her to arrive, talking and being pretty loud probably, when she appeared in the doorway. she walked to the front of the room, silent all the while, and watched us calmly until we quieted down. then she walked back to the door, turned the lights off, and left. after what felt like forever — the darkness had been punctured by occasional nervous laughter but no one had dared to speak — she reentered the room, turned the lights back on, and, with no further explanation, told us that today we would be learning about john cage.



the dark classroom was a vehicle, just like the silence of 4’33”, to hear and notice background noise. that was john cage’s music: giggling, squirming, breathing were just as momentous as chord progressions and intricately placed harmonies. very very zen.


in the end, how can you not love someone who, in addition to being one of the most influential creative figures of the 20th century, was also an amateur mushroom collector?



[ stefanie ]

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love love love this photo,

posted by the sartorialist on monday.

it reminds me of fabric stores and the classroom in the theatre building where i took costume construction during college, and other locales where one can’t help but find themselves awash in hue. when i make art i usually find myself creating line drawings in ink or shadowy charcoal compositions, always in black and white, but whenever i’m at a museum i’m always drawn to the most colorful pieces, and i spend hours salivating in front of van gogh, rothko, and matisse, vowing to incorporate more color the next time i have a canvas in front of me.

(l’italienne, vincent van gogh)

Mark Rothko. Untitled. (1968)

(untitled, mark rothko)

spring is great because flowers bloom blah blah blah but the season also has such a nice light about it, making those flowers all the more beautiful but also lending a special sheen to rusty basketball hoops and not-yet-blooming trees and other previously dingy looking items that are really so colorful and beautiful if you take the time to look. few things are more inspirational than bright colors and odd color combinations, so LOOK AROUND and soak it in.

[ stefanie ]

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happy day before earth day, too


DID YOU KNOW that there are real-life superheroes among us?


real people, that is, who slide into spandex suits on a nightly basis and troll around our cities, delivering some good old fashioned vigilante justice to america and its denizens.


zetaman, for example, pounds the portland pavement, handing food out to the homeless and sometimes picking up litter. and squeegeeman keeps new york free of “crime and grime”, oh yes he does.


the always-present risk for real live superheroes is, of course, real live SUPERVILLAINS. a friend of zetaman’s, a californian superhero who sports a ninja costume, was attacked by some dude wearing a costume and super-something pads. i’m tempted to call him a superweirdo but that would be judgemental so i will not.


aside from supervillains, however, these masked crusaders are super AWESOME and seem to have really good hearts. zetaman‘s wife (ms meow) loves how much he cares about his fellow portlanders, which is adorable. zetaman used to wear tights but they were uncomfortable so he switched to cargo pants. A+, friend.



[ stefanie ]

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sophie blackall combines beautiful illustrations with craiglist’s always fascinating missed connections posts.

sometimes creepy stalkers + the internets + artsy drawings = the best

[ stefanie ]

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etsy etsy etsy

here are some snazzy crafts for browsing buying and procrastinating.

1. paisleymagic’s ostrich tote

2. hitree’s decapitated unicorn

3. thetreehousestudio’s feather print

4. orangetwist’s vintage bicycle cards

5. maleaab’s woodgrain cards

6. laurelsbench’s ring

7. icecreamcandy’s rose earrings

8. ellynelly’s fern wall graphic

[ stefanie ]

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