Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Where are you, little star?

little star

It's been a long time since I picked up my paints for a lunchtime painting, and as I was especially sleepy and a bit cranky, it was a welcome relief. The words are from a song I was listening to that had such a sweet melody I couldn't stop smiling as I walked to work...

MixwitMixwit make a mixtapeMixwit mixtapes

Monday, August 25, 2008

things I liked that day

things I liked that day

I'm almost finished with this little journal and its lightly manila-toned pages - here are a few doodles from weeks ago, just after I saw Hellboy 2. The movie, although it had its minor faults, I enjoyed, and I was floored by the incredible makeup and costumes, especially (as you see above), Princess Nuala. I love how her very makeup created an otherworldly sense of tension that added to the plot. Also, there are my green shoes which I love very much. :)


I know I'm a goofball, but lately I find it hard to eat a meal without thinking if le Carotte might like it. I decided he would certainly enjoy corn.

And to all the peeps who commented on my last posts, thank you so much. Your words inspire me and comfort me and I find you putting into words the very things that I feel about home... thank you! It sounds corny, but it means so much to me to have you as friends, and even when I'm quiet, I do keep up with all of you who comment!

Here's a little last-of-the-summer sweetness found on a walk through the West Village last weekend:

I hope you're relishing the last of the summer as much as I am... :)

Friday, August 15, 2008

Quiet lately

on a walk

So, I know I've been quiet lately... ever since my return from Texas last weekend I've been in a very meditative, quiet mood. I always forget how hard it is for me to visit home and leave, especially when I do it so quickly, taking only a few days or so. Lately it's gotten so hard for me to do that I'm actually thinking of not going home for the holidays... that sounds so weird, doesn't it? I find it so hard to explain, maybe some of you who live far from "home" know what I mean... there's so many stresses on you when you travel home, never enough time, sadness when you leave... and lately I find it pretty overwhelming.

Of course, that's not to say I wasn't happy to be home and see family and loved ones - I'm always overjoyed. It was all just tinged with a tiny bit of melancholy this time. .. When I return home it is the simplest, smallest things that sometimes affect me, like the familiar shape of trees I can't see in New York:

But one of my favorite afternoons was a late breakfast with my sister, followed by a trip to the Hobby Lobby, where we purchased crafty supplies and sat down together for a few hours to paint.

The happy result of this endeavor was:

Thanks to everyone who has been commenting and emailing - I apologize for my slowness and quietness... I know I'll be back to full-time craftiness soon... :)

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Fashion images that inspire me

Originally uploaded by jessica m

It's a bit tough for fashion images to inspire me... on the one hand I love fashion when it is daring, artistic and creative. On the other hand, there are a lot of stale, drab, and boring images of fashion out there. As in clothing, it's hard for me to describe what I love, but I know what I love when I see it. Case in point: that wonderful moleskine drawing above, which reminds me so much of Catherine Deneuve in Repulsion (one of my all-time favorites).

I occasionally follow magazines, but I can tell when my favorite art directors leave because they no longer inspire me. Lately, I've been keeping up with the Sartorialist and enjoying his poetic finds. I was fascinated to finally see the face behind the camera, and what an awesome, punch-in-the-gut amazing ad it is:

You should definitely click through to see the large size on his blog. I loved the graceful, Great Gatsby, roaring 20's-like quality to the photo, but I must say what I loved most was the kindness in his eyes.

What about you? Are there any ads, blogs, or good magazines inspiring you now?

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Monkeys in progress

it's been awhile...

I decided it's been too long since I had cute plaid monkeys in my life... :)

Random images

Sometimes I feel compelled to post random images online... Random images were the reason I joined Flickr about 4 years ago - I was feeling very deflated after taking Graphic Design classes and being very slow and bad at every assignment. I only received positive feedback twice: once when I brought in some drawings and once in my last class, when our assignment was to take random photographs of our day. That unexpected feeling of happiness and serendipity that someone found special the random things I found special... to me that's been the mystery of the internet...

So, a few images at random...

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Thoughts about Indians and looking Mexican

One of my favorite experiences while staying at the lodge in Whitefish was curling up on the warm couch, surrounded by dark wood paneling, and looking at the amazing photographs in this book:

It's a huge book with gorgeous, sepia-toned images of Native Americans that are startling in their modernity - there's something so immediate and crisp about them that gives them a quality both of being taken a few seconds ago and of being taken in some alternate world. I've always (like many people) been fascinated by Native American culture and history and native and indigenous peoples of every culture. I remember taking a class about Native American history in college and something my professor said rings very true to me... our fascination with native peoples says more about ourselves than about the individuals we fixate upon... meaning, as we are looking from the outside, we imbue them with so many layers of meaning and fantasy that it occludes the reality of their existence. Did that make any sense? I hope so. :)

In any case, I was especially drawn to these unusual (and admittedly Princess Leia-like) hairstyles, enough to pull out my pen and take out some watercolors:
looking at photos by Edward S. Curtis

One image I particularly loved:

I'm partly fascinated with native Americans because my grandfather was a member of a native group in Mexico, and had very "Indian" features. I am often mistaken for being Asian or half-Asian, but I really think what people are seeing are traces of those native features, which were so strong in my grandfather's face and my father's face, but less so in me. It always takes a lot of explaining to tell people that you can be any color of the rainbow and still be Mexican... there's a whole range from blonde and fair-skinned to dark skin with very native features... and I'm "in between." When people say someone "looks Mexican" I think it's funny, because to me what they are really saying is that person looks Native American.

I wished I'd had time to read the whole book, so when I found it on Amazon for only 20 dollars (?!) , I ordered it right away. What I found most fascinating about Edward S. Curtis was the image he had in his mind of what it is to be native. He hated missionaries because he saw them as an invading force that robbed native peoples of their culture and happiness. I find his descriptions of individuals very haunting, and his words say just as much about him as they do about the people he was trying to describe. About the little girl pictured above, he wrote:

It would be difficult to conceive of a more aboriginal than this Mohave girl. Her eyes are those of the fawn of the forest, questioning the strange things of civilization upon which it gazes for the first time.

If you'd like to see all the photos online, they are all available thanks to a Library of Congress project: http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/award98/ienhtml/curthome.html. But I also thoroughly recommend the book, which I am looking forward to curling up with, this time surrounded by skyscrapers, in New York. :)

And by the way, I also ordered a movie I really loved and have been thinking about a lot lately, The New World. I love it because while it honors native culture and peoples it doesn't try to glorify or romanticize them in a way that denies them individuality - it's more about the interaction between two very different cultures, and there's something about the ending that makes my spirit feel like it's flying... it's amazing.