Thursday, December 22, 2011

"Merrily merrily merrily merrily...life is but a dream"

Oh how I wish that where true.
Sometimes I feel like my life is one long series of unfortunate events. Life took a weird turn and I'm struggling to just be...okay. So Im sorry that I wasn't posting the way as much as I would haved like.The fall/winter season is always a ruff one for me. With the way I'm struggling now I'm a little worried about how I'll be once the winter really gets here.
Moving on I was having so much fun doing my own little sketchbook project that I decided to sign up for the real one! I have until January 31st to complete and return my book so that it will be apart of the tour. I'm excited to be apart of something so big! Also I've been getting that photo bug again. I haven't touched my camera in about a month. Really I 've only been using it to document my sketchbook and portfolio progress. For the past couple of days I've wanted to go out and photography any and everything.
Who knows what will become of these feelings...
A la prochaine!

Monday, December 12, 2011

A List of Things to Eat

  • The Cure All- I've woken up after a long night of partying. I think I'll do it tommorrow just so I can make my self this sandwich. I can't what to try this, with a few variations though.
  • The Bedforder- I don't eat meat, but I coouldn't resist posting this, look at that cheese ooze.
  • The Burnt Gardener-There are no words to descride the feeling that came over me as I read this post..

Someboby buy my a skillet!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

All the Dreams in the World..

Found right here.

A la Prochaine!

The End Never Seemed so Far Away

Well...I'm almost done.
I'm almost finished with the application process for art school. I still have to write an artist statement and photograph the pieces for portfolio. Then I just have to wait and see. If I get in, great I go to school. If I don't then I will pick my bruised ass up and proceed to plan B(note to self: dearest self, please, please, please make a plan B).

I'm almost done but for some reason I don't feel like relief from all the pressure I'm under is coming any time soon. If anything I know feel more pressured. I want so many things for myself and everyday that I don't do something extraordinay I feel is a waste. Honestly I can't name one thing that I'm doing daily that I would label as extraodinary. The things I'm doing(ie: my job, working towards getting back in school) are things I think I should be doing, but they don't make me happy.

But with so many people living there dream, right in front of me,  I can't fool myself into thinking that I can't do the same thing anymore. I just have to find away to do it....

A la prochaine!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Video of the Day: Changing Education Paradigms

Hello class,
Lets begin today's lesson with this quote: "Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." -Albert Einstein

 Now watch this:
Then reading this here.

My thoughts/rambles:

When it comes to my schooling I've always felt frustrated. I've always felt like I was stupid because I couldn't learn the way I was "supposed" to be. If anyone was actually paying attention when I was younger they probably would have tried to slap an ADHD label on me but they weren't.  Which I'm marginally thankful for fyi.

In my case since no one was paying attention I simple through up some walls and held up shop in my head.  In the video above Sir Ken Robinson explains the difference between a aesthetic  and an anaesthetic experience. With no one around to wake me UP I had a very anaesthetic experience in school.

Sir Robinson also talks about how the current system was made for a different age. When he said this I snorted loudly and through in a nice "NO SHIT" for good measure. I think it's been quite clear for sometime now that the way the educational system is set up isn't right. Now I feel like I should mention here since I'm hating on the system that I'm currently applying to go back to school(I've been out for one semester). Everyday I wake up and ask myself "Why?" I don't think that a formal education = a job in this day and age (actually I know it doesn't) BUT I'm holding on to the hope that:
  1. I'm not going to be waisting my time
  2. That some how, even if I don't get a degree, I'll learn something that can help me survive in this economy.
But enough about me. There are some key points that Sir Robinson said that I wanted to point out:
  1. Great learning happens in groups. Collaboration is the stuff of growth.
  2. Anaesthetic: shutting your senses off; deaden yourself to whats happening.
  3. We are getting our children through education by anaesthetising them.
  4. We should be waking them UP to whats inside of themselves.
Now class....what do you have to say?
A la prochaine!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sunday Morning Music: Catherine Feeny

I was feeling very blue last week(or was it weeks?). It was very confusing to go to sleep one day literally vibrating with happiness, just to wake up and feel horrible! With no idea why. But that was then, and I'm feeling much better now!

A la prochaine!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Image Transferring try #2

Eureka! I did it (the girl is the transfer). I think the first time didn't work out because I used so much water to rub the image that I started to tear the paper and gave up. This time I when the paper looked like it might tear I waited until it dried a bit then went back in. There's a bit of tearing on the girls shirt but I like it.

A la prochaine!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Video of the Day: The Adventures of a Cardboard Box

This film was made for the Nokia Shorts 2011 competition. It tells the story of a boy who meets and befriends a large cardboard box, and was shot on a Nokia N8.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Glance at Last Week

Last week was ruff for me, but I tried to make the best of it.  I've been trying to ride my bike more often. So when I needed to go into the city for some art supplies, but more importantly I wanted some cookies. I hopped on my bike to save some money(for cookies). The cookies didn't last long enough to be photographed sadly. It was such a beautiful night. These where taken on the Brooklyn bridge. This is the only bridge I like biking on even with the tourist that like to walk in the bike lane.
The art supplies: two Faber-Castell pens(XS, F) a white gel pen, and a Excel craft knife. I was using a sharpie but it wasn't working out. I love the Faber-Castell pens. I haven't find much use for the gel pen yet, but I'm sure I will!

A la prochaine!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Monday Afternoons...

Reading: Matilda - Ronald Dahl
Writing: This post, and hopefully a couple more after it. Then I really must work on this dreaded artist statement for  school.
Listening: Cheers(Drink To That) - Rihanna
Eating: Bread pudding with a cup of OJ
Feeling: Totally inspired after yesterdays trip to the Brooklyn Arts Library!
A la prochaine!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Video of the Day: The Sketchbook Project 2012

I found this video about The Sketchbook Project over at ModCloth's blog. I love it! I'm defiantly going to be apart of the 2013 project! I'm just doing too much right now to take on anything else. I'm also defiantly going to visit the Art Co-op soon. It's only a 20 minute bike ride away after all!

A la prochaine!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Seen near Union Square.

I've seen Louis Mendes but never had my own camera to take his photograph. I'm glad I was finally able to capture him! He is a great photgrapher. Taken 10/16/2011.

A la prochaine!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

"Speak to us of Joy and Sorrow..."

"Your joy is your sorrow unmasked. And the same well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears. And how else can this be? The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain"....."When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy"..."Together they come, and when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed."

From The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran
When I first read this it didn't ring true to me. How can joy and sorrow be "inseparable"?  A couple of days ago I was intensely happy, but before the day had ended I was intensely sad. When I sat and thought about it I realized that even when I was happy that sadness was still there, and vise versa. What this quote means to me is something I've always known. When you are sad happiness isn't far away(and vise versa).

A la prochaine!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Image Transferring #1

So I tried to transfer an image for the first time not to long ago. It was a complete fail. Boo! But with I shall not give up. I think the problem was I might have bought the wrong Gel Medium and I only left the image on for a couple of hours. I was so excited to see the results. The image I used was a couple of years old too. Here's my disaster:
 The first image is what I got. The second is what I wanted(minus the words). I wasn't ready to except defeat so I added some more gel medium on top in an attempt to add some shine(or something). When the gel dried the image looked dried out again. In the end though I added the text and through some red paint spatter on top.
 A la Prochaine!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I am euphoric! Come join me.

Have you ever been so happy that you actually can feel it flowing freely down through your fingers and toes? Do you feel it pulsing through your chest? Do you sit with it, eyes closed, just rolling it back and forth?
Have you ever sat and wondered why? And when you finally figure out that it had nothing to do with anyone else. Does the shook of it thrill you? That this feeling came from within with no outside help... I love that! The best type of happiness comes from within  and ohh how is last and last!

I can feel it in my fingers and toes. I am euphoric!
A la prochaine!

The Sketchbook Project

Have you heard of the sketchbook project? I didn't but instantly fell for the idea. That is until I found out that I would never get my sketchbook back and that I had to pay a small fee to join. And I would have to return the book by a certain date. Since I just found out about it and I decided to do it next year. I still wanted to do something so in the end I decided to do the project, but from home and share what I do to the pages with you all!
The Sketchbook: 
A small Canson journal I got about a year ago compliments of Blick art materials that I had barely used. I decided that for this journal I wasn't going to work with in a theme. I didn't want to limit myself I just wanted to create! This is what I have so far...
 I'm going to try and be more  a bit more creative. I really want to try image transferring! I'm going to need more supplies before can though. I made most piece with what I already had available(and ruined some paint brushes by letting paint dry in the camel hairs x-( darn it...) Here's a list of what I hope to get eventually:
  • Faber-Castell artist pens- I've been using a sharpie but it hasn't been going well
  • White gel pen- for small details
  • A Mixed Media Journal- I've noticed that my paper buckles under all the stuff I'm putting on it. The journal I'm currently using is the paper is only 65lbs. I've read that 80lbs or better is good better for what I'm doing.
That's all. I like to keep my list small! I'm really excited about image transferring so I'll let you all see the results of that when I get Gel Medium.
A la prochaine!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Ready or Not- Fall is Here!

I love fall. I love how the leaves change colors before falling to the ground. Then I love collecting those fallen leaves. I love hot spiced apple cider(or hot spiced chia). I love drinking tea first thing in the morning and again at bed time. I love butternut squash soup. I love chili. Most of all love what people do with pumpkin around this time. All these things mean fall is here! Here are some fall related links that you can eat, drink or just visually digest. Enjoy!
  1. Smile and Wave- October Loves You
  2. Enjoy! P.s The image: We've been having some weird weather here in NYC. That image is one I took in 2009.
A la prochaine!

Sunday Morning Music: Weezer

Good Morning!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

"Send me a postcard when you get there!"

I love traveling! But I've only had the means to leave my hometown twice, and I've never been out of the country. Though I'm working on changing that I still can't wait to see the rest of the world!
My wanderlust fix for now are postcards, and Postcrossing helps me get that. With postcrossing I can send and recieve to people all over the world. It's awesome and like having mutiple pen pals all over the world(something else I've always wanted to do!). What I early like is that you never know where your going to receive a post card from. Everytime you send one you get one!
Some of my favorites:
 A la prochaine!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

How art is saving my life AND putting me in debt.

"Oh, you want to be an artist? There's no money in that!"

If you've decided to follow your heart and make art to support yourself then you've probably heard that statement before. I sure have! I don't let it sway me though. I feel like I don't really have a choose in the matter.
I've had anxiety issues for as long as I can remember. I ignored them(and everyone else around me did also) until 7th grade when I had my first panic attack. In high school I was homeless for a year, I then spent that next year in bed. At the end of that year the only thing that got me out of my bed was this desire to make something...anything...that I could touch..something that I was proud of...something no on else could make.
When people tell me I'm not going to make alot of money being an artist I always tell them "but I'll be happy". And in my head I add "and I'll never have to take anti-depressants!"

But lets honest a budding artist's income is small. No, no it's non-existent!
That would be fine if I wasn't a girl that LOVED to eat(and shop)! Not that you'd know it by looking at me. I recently went to the doctor and found out that I had lost some weight. I was pissed but not surprised. I took a week off work to focus on my portfolio which meant less money on payday.
I don't mind having less money but I hate being hungry. I think it's one of those things that happens when you grow up without enough food to go around. This past week I've been using my credit card to feed myself. I'm trying to be grown up about it. You know buy things to make meals instead of buying out, and all that jazz. It's very hard though.
I feel like to become better in my craft I need to practice. But while practicing I feel like I'm going without. Has anyone else felt(or feel) this way, or am I being a baby?
A la prochaine!

For your Viewing Enjoyment!

I've been working very hard trying to get a portfolio created for the school I want to go to. It's been hard work! I'm no where near finished it feels like I haven't even started really. BUT I'm also having alot of fun. I haven't been able to draw in a studio from a model like I usually do so I've just been sketching things out that are in my head. Here are two of my recent drawings:

I had a ball doing these! I call them "Those Hatters" I plan on doing more and/or making them paintings one day! Though I have fun doing these I don't know if there serious enough to go in my portfolio. I'm leaning towards adding them. Might as well put what I can do right out in the open. Right?

A la prochaine!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Artist Talk: Nakeya B.

Who?
Nakeya Brown

Where are your from?
Small town in Pennsylvania

What do you call yourself (writer, rapper, photographer, etc)?
Photographer

How do you create (your inspiration)?
I am big off of creating from feelings. I have moments where I am just searching for inspiration. I find traveling really inspires me, seeing other people's work and experimenting with new equipment keeps me producing new work.

Why do you do it?
After awhile you do something so much and it becomes a part of your life. It's hard to imagine myself giving up photography. It's a part of me.

Are you currently working on anything?
Currently I am working on a project focusing on plantation fields on River Road in New Orleans. There will be on display in December. As always I am working on capturing portraits of wonderful people. You can see those images at www.sheshootshere.com.

Advice you would give a young Artist?
Always invest time in getting to know your craft. Get to know who the greats where in your field that were doing it before you, they weren't great for no reason. And as usual, be sure to make your craft for yourself first, and everyone else later.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

"and your very flesh shall be a great poem..."

"This is what you shall do:
Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches,
give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy,
devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God,
 have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, 
re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book,
dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem
and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body."
 — Walt Whitman from Leaves of Grass

A la Prochaine!

Sunday Morning Music: Florence and the Machine

Monday, September 26, 2011

Monday Morning...

Reading: The Time Traveler's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
Writing: An essay for the art school I'm applying to, and this post.
Listening: Fix You-Coldplay
Eating: Steamed broccoli, carrots, sting beans, and asparagus
Enjoying: How quiet my apartment is at the moment
Watching: I LOVE this commercial
A la prochaine!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

5 Ways of Staying Inspired!

Lately I've been having great success with keeping myself inspired. I've been working hard to create and finish a portfolio for the school I want to transfer too.  
  1. Carry a Journal- I actually carry two journals. One to write in and one to draw in. Both are small enough that I have no excuse but to carry them everyday. In any kind of bag.
  2. Music Equals Life- Its amazing how music can change or add to whatever your feeling. Unfortunately I'm not the greatest when it comes to making play list, it's a science that I haven't mastered. That's why Pandora was created for us sub-level creatures with no taste for musical arrangement!
  3. Refresh Your Workspace- Since deciding that I don't want to study photography in school I've been playing with different ways of creating. Drawing is clean enough, but painting and making collages can become messy. I can't get work down if my workspace is messy. A clean space is a creative space!
  4. Figure Out What gets You Excited- Once I made the decision about what I really wanted to do with the rest of my life. And once I decided that I could careless with what people thought about my decision. All the mental blocks I had just magically disappeared. Creating became easier and fun instead of a tiring chore. Work became the chore. I used to love going to work, and who doesn't love making money? But know I can't what until my work day is over so I can start doing what I really love!
  5. Change the Way You Think and See- My most favorite thing to do these days is find blogs online that are making the sort of art I hope to create one day. I can spend hours doing this, there's so many great art blogs out there. Instead of staring at my computer screen with envy I use what I find to challenge myself to create differently. Doing this helps me see that I'm really not behind anyone. I'm different, and that's great. There could never be another(insert favorite artist here) so why try to imitate anyone else?
So there you have it. These are the things I'm doing currently. What things are you all doing to stay inspired?
Inspired by this post.

A la prochaine!

Sweetest Thing I've Ever Known.....

A la prochaine!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Attention Attention!

Hello All!

I've been trying very hard on this blog to make it look how I've wanted it to look for a while. It's been hard but fulfilling work! There's still some work that needs to be done. The main thing is that banner I'm tired of looking at it! I'm going away this weekend, but Monday its back to work.

I'm hoping to be done by Wednesday so cross your fingers and pray that I don't start dreaming in HTMLs!

A la prochaine!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Video of the Day: Danny and Annie


Watching this took me one step closer to understanding what love is!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Seen from Dumbo Park- 9/11 Memorial

Taken september 10th, 2011. It shooked me that it's been 10 years already. While I was there I also saw a good of people in a tight cirlce with light candles. I didn't realize, until now, that they had probably be meeting at that spot for 10 years to give comfort and support. To people that might have been total strangers.
A la prochaine.

Monday, September 12, 2011

F.O.K.U.S presents The Stoop 2011


 Photo's by me from Fokus presents The Stoop 2011 last month.
A la prochaine!

Have a Cupcake

A la prochaine! 

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Brooklyn Rooftops Pt. 2

 Another rooftop another great evening!
A la prochaine!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Road Trip Music

So today at 12:30pm I will be on my way to DC to go meet my father and then go to his house in VA. I will also be achieving my goal of traveling out of NYC twice this year!! I went to Baltimore the last weekend in July. So this is my second trip out of NYC and I've figured out that even though I'm going to be exhausted(it's 3:30am right now) I probably won't sleep or read the books I've packed.

Which leads me to Ipod. I don't know what I would do with out my music. I ALWAYS have my Ipod with me and I always have my headphones in(though sometimes there just in to keep people from harassing me on the sidewalk). I usually just put my Ipod on shuffle but there are a couple of albums that I can listen to from start to finish(all the while fighting the urge to sing out loud or dance in my seat!).

So there's album Sara Bareilles Kaleidoscope Heart

The soundtrack to the movie 500 Days of Summer

And the Black Eyed Peas album The Beginning

If none of these help with the 4 1/2 hr ride then I'll listen to my Harry Potter audiobook(number 5). Don't judge me!

 A la prochaine!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Brooklyn Rooftops Pt. 1

 I've had more access to rooftops this summer then I've had my whole life. I couldn't be more please with this fact! These were taken on the 4th of July. Being on a rooftop in the city is like being on a deserted island that you never want to leave!

Wanderlust: Iceland

Iceland from Violenn Simon on Vimeo.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Honesty

Being honest with yourself can be harder then trying to be honest with someone else. If I was being honest with myself I'd admit that this summer, this year really, hasn't gone the way I needed it to. Instead I'll keep lying to myself in the pretext that I'm holding on because things have to get better.

I feel like I'm always trying to force things to fit. Things like certain parts of my art, or the people in my life. I'm either trying to force something to fit or holding on to it for dear life. The problem I've found in that is with people while your trying to make everything fit the other person is off living there life. In art the problem is that while your trying to force something to fit, that isn't working for you any more(no matter what anyone else says or thinks they know) your just stopping your self from growing artistically. 

Its taken me until this point to understand that letting something go isn't the same as giving up.I'm tired of feeling disgruntled and sad because I'm not getting the results I want. Then feeling more tired and hurt from holding on and then totally defeated when I can't hold on any longer. Its a horrid cycle.

Someone said to me that everything I do today is a step towards my future. I fully agree. So it's up to me to take positive steps.

Sunday Morning Music: The Stylistics


I started watching this video and though it came out before I was born I started smiling like a any girl would. I remember watching Crooklyn and hearing People Make the World Go Round. 
Happy Sunday!
Click here for People Make the World Go Round
Here for Break up to Make up

 A la prochaine!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Artist Talk: Vandana Jain

Who?
My name's Vandana Jain.

Where are you from?
I'm a city girl. I was born in Jamaica, Queens and now I live in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

What do you call yourself (writer, rapper, photographer, etc)?
I'm an artist : )

How do you create (your inspiration)?
I usually start with an idea and then I start sketching, sometimes by hand but mostly on the computer. I'm inspired by all sorts of things, like broken glass, and chain link fences and barbed wire. Also, I work with corporate logos a lot, in direct violation of trademark law. But it's all in fair use.

Why do you do it?
Art is a framework that allows you to look at the world in a different way. It is also a place where you don't need to work according to other's definitions, or to their expectations. When I make art, I don't need to have a meaning or a reason or an answer, I can just do something for it's own sake. Art helps me stay sane.

Are you currently working on anything?
I'm making gold paintings on cardboard for a project called "Protest." All the paintings are of haloes, mandalas, and other spiritually radiant imagery, and each one is mounted on a stick, like a protest sign. I like the idea of people getting together to protest the lack of awe-inspiring beauty in their life.

Advice you would give a young Artist?
Work hard, and don't be too hard on yourself. Stay out of debt. Art isn't gonna make you rich and if you don't have loans, you get to spend more time doing what you love. Be open to new experiences. It's like what they say, "It's all about the journey." Enjoy yourself, and stay curious.

I plan on traveling outside of NYC twice this year. Where would you recommend I travel to in the US?
I highly recommend visiting the Spiral Jetty, an earthwork by Robert Smithson. It's about an hour or so north of Salt Lake City.

To view Vandana's work click HERE.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Wheels for the Summer

For the last couple of summers I've found my self stuck home during my one of my favorite seasons. Anytime I'm in school I don't buy metrocards, there brought for me. So when I'm on break from school, or not working, I'm stranded in at home. This summer I decided that I was going to invest in something that helped me feel...free. So here's my bike. It's beautiful, and I love it!

A la prochaine!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Fort Greene Festival 2011

I made my way down to Fort Greene Park late weekend to see Mos Def. I didn't really want to go but I felt it would be nice to get outside for a while. It was so crowded when I got there. Much more crowded then last year when I went to see Common. I was expecting it to be crowed closer to when Mos Def was going to be on stage. I didn't even try to get close to the stage. I hung back instead and ran into an old friend. We got some food and I joined her on a nice patch of grass...away from the stage. 


 Christina Brown(on the right)
 Michelle
 A la prochaine!