The Ivy League

 

 

 

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My  latest piece, and favorite piece I’ve done is titled The Ivy League and it has a beautifully bittersweet story behind it.

Three years ago on November 3rd, my friend Ivy took her own life. It was by far the most devastating event that has happened in my life. There isn’t a day that I don’t think about her and the impact her life has on mine.

This year as the day approach I immediately was angry at myself. Angry that I didn’t wear my bracelet in her memory for days at a time. Angry, that I couldn’t recall the sound of her voice on command. Just angry. Moving on sometimes can be a bittersweet because you want the pain to subside but you don’t want to forget. Memories are all I have now of our friendship.

Let me tell you about my friend. She was beautifully selfless, and a passionate disciple of God.  Her eyes used to light up when discussing her latest plan to end world poverty, and they glared in anger during discussions on the prevalent issue of sex trafficking around the world. Her eyes were soft and inviting, but full of conviction. For the pass three years when addressing her death, I struggled to find any shred of light. Ivy was a light in a dark world, the entire time I knew her she battled mental illness and strived to combat injustices.A few months ago Ivy’s mother pulled into my driveway and proceeded to tell me a story about her. She was an organ donor, and her family just received a call as to how Ivy’s body was used. Two people received their sight from her eyes. I’d like to think that means her vision of the world is still alive. This story made me realize all the light Ivy left behind.

This piece is 165  pairs of her eyes printed on white cloth in remembrance of her life and death. In my grieving I created a piece with the last things I have left of Ivy, photographs, and stories. The white represents her surrender to death, while her soft eyes represent the pieces she left behind for the world. Some eyes are printed faintly because at times it is hard to see any positives from this tragedy, but it is still there. This piece stares at you and beg for the audience to look into her eyes. It forces the viewers to look at themselves as she looks at you. Arranging them in cluster the statement is clear, Ivy will not be forgotten.

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To learn about becoming an organ donor, and registering click here

 

 

Abstraction

Since my transferring to my new university I have embarked on this new adventure called abstraction. Well, even more so nonrepresentational studies which focuses more on the experience the artist has creating the piece than the overall result of the piece itself. I find this work to be quite fascinating because the success or failure of the piece isn’t the primary focus. The doing or action of making the piece is the main focus.

My biggest inspiration for my current work is Cy Twombly. His work is beautiful in the sense that when standing in front of his piece you see his experience. You are overwhelmed by the slashes, the motion it took to make that mark on the page. Their large scale takes up the entirety of your vision exploding with color and brush strokes.

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(Here’s an example of his work)

Here are some of my current more current works on abstraction:

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Painting with Beyonce: Oils: 24×30    ( I only listened to Beyonce’s new album in the making of this painting)

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Inspired by Twombly 1 of 4: Oils: 18×24

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Inspired by Twombly 2 0f 4: Oils: 18x 24

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Inspired by Twombly 3 of 4: Oils: 18×24

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Inspired by Twombly 4 of 4: oils: 18×24

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This latest painting I did for my new apartment took a different turn than my previous works. I added thread to the piece after the initial painting dried; embroidering sections to carry heavier visual weight, and fringe coming out from the canvas giving the painting visual depth and a slightly sculptural element.

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Let me know what you think of these pieces, as I grasp on this process head on in the upcoming semester.

 

Dear Mr. Ed Reddington

For class last semester I  had a create a film based on something I found in a “junk” shop. This was honestly one of the most challenging experiences of my life but I found some pretty interesting things in the “junk shop” such as:

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These old photos of strangers from as early as 1915. My personal favorite is the three ladies in their Sunday best. I call them “The Three Graces”.  But in the end I decided to create a video based on this envelope:

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Small and humble the only clues this letter gave was for who it was intended for: Mr. Ed Reddington. I imagined a life for this man. Writing him letters from his secret lady who goes by only J. The video is a visual representation of the time they spent together.

I presented the video like this:

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The box contained the 10 letters I wrote so that when viewing the film people could read through the letters and get the entire story.

I even put some stills from the film in a fanfold.

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The film has a slight focus on fashion and relationships which I enjoy. Thank you so much Curtis for playing Mr. Ed Reddington and being amazing.

 

Let me know what you think! Enjoy!

 

With Glittering Eyes

” And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.”

-Roald Dahl

The past few weeks have been incredibly busy, so I have been searching the archives for some of my favorite throwback shoots to show you all. This photo shoot was part of a motion study for my photography class two semesters ago. This is one of my favorite shoots of all time because the results came out different than I intended, and well I spent a few hours throwing glitter at my sister (what could be more fun?) This project I believe was the launching point of this blog. It got me focused on the beautiful reality we live in and shifted goals on entering the fashion industry. The fashion industry can reveal the beauty in everyone no matter what size, shape, or in this case age you are. Fashion can be used a tool to boost confidence and narrow the gap between women by breaking down competitive walls. Fashion can only do this if its focused is shifted because right now the industry sometimes is doing quite the opposite. The world needs more magic, or maybe a few more people watching the world with glittering eyes.

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Shadows we cast.

In loo of the extremely raining days I haven’t been able to take many style pics.

So here is a series of photographic work I did for my photo final along with the artist statement for the project:

 

“These Decisions we face may

turn us into either saints or

monsters, but it has to be

worth more than

becoming nothing at all”

 

This excerpt from a poem by Mary Kate Teske has fueled my current photographic work. My work derives from an exhale of intense emotion as I face a major decision head on and examine its consequences in my personal life.

The location of my photographs is the abandoned New York State Custodial Asylum for the Feeble-Minded. This institution was opened in 1878 for “feeble-minded” children. The maximum capacity was 853 inmates, and the waiting list was usually extensive. In the early 20th century the institution changed to only accepting women of childbearing age, in order to prevent them from multiplying their kind. This institution isolated and contained people of “feeble mind” or a person unable to make intelligent decisions or judgments. These people were deemed insane, or in a state of mind that prevents normal perception, behavior, or social interaction. Many of the detainees died within these walls, and were buried in unmarked graves. The institution closed in the late 21st century due to cruel treatment and suspicious detainee deaths.

The man I photographed finds himself outside this asylum. The eerie beauty of the building has allured him. The man is wrestling with a decision, one that has brought out the monster found within him. He empathizes with the people once detained here because he too finds himself face to face with his inner demons and they are increasingly hard to bear. It is outside of this building that he finds the solitude to wrestle the monster he has become.

My photographs are fabricated moments rather than reality observations. The subject matter is manipulated and staged; the photographs altered in postproduction to heighten the ambiguity of the subject. Through the exploration of depth perception and contrast the light bounces on and off the subject hiding him in the shadows of his own decisions. My work is a fine art photographic exploration of the shadows our decisions cast and how those shadows manipulate the spaces around us.

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Thanks to Curtis for being the perfect model for this project. You rock, I love you. Check out more of Curtis on his Instagram

Let me know what you think. I hope you enjoy it as much as I love shooting it.

 

 

 

Inspiration Board

I have been  compiling things, and more things for what could probably make up 300 inspiration boards but I thought I’d share one, and deconstruct it.

Collecting inspiration is infinite and necessary for an artist, or creator of any sorts. But I believe everyone in any profession should make inspiration boards (or five). An inspiration board doesn’t require reason. It’s stuff you like put next to and overlapping other stuff you like. It provides motivation and inspiration to help you continue doing things you like. And frankly, they are really pretty, (if they are all things you like).

So here’s one of mine:

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Now I thought we’d dig in and go piece by piece so I can explain how this pile of crazy got on an inspiration board.

 

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1. I think this one explains itself but I live my life by this phrase.

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2. Every inspiration board needs a little humor. I love this.

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3. This Kimono! I love this look, the fringe and the hat. I need these two items in my life.

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4.I found this image on Pinterest and I just love how the textures and fabrics were assembled together. Plus the floral is just goregous

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5. Every inspiration board needs a picture of Florence Welch. She is my style inspiration, I love the boho flair she has. She is always on par.

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6. The many faces of Elle Fanning. She is one of my style inspirations and she is only 16!!!!!!! What a girl. Her hair is from the Gods!

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7.  This image just reminds me to by cozy. Warm socks and tea after a long day.

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8. This image is from Urban Outfitters and I NEED THOSE TIGHTS!  If you need them too you can find them here.

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9. This photo is apart of a year long self portrait series done by  the extremely talent photographer Nicole Mason. And she has killer style. Check out here blog here to see each weeks self portrait.

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10. I found this print on Pinterest. It is just too adorable.

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11. Daisies are my favorite

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12. THESE SHOES!  I don’t know where they are from but I need them!

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13. I collect tea cups, and tea. Let’s just say tea is an obsession of mine.

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14. This is a picture I found of FPme and lets just say I am in love with this style pic! And her hair.

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15. That is outfit is perf. enough said.

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16. Those sunglasses, the braids. So many feels.

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17. This is an untitled piece by Cy Twombly one of my favorite painters. I hope to paint as well as him when I am done with art school.

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18. If only I was as cool as this dog.

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19. This outfit has inspired me. I have purchase items similar to replicate it.

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20. I am really into Pineapple print lately and this set is so adorable. You can buy it here.

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21. The painting is by one of my favorite artist Joan Mitchell (no not the singer). I just love the colors, and the scribbles.

 

So there you have it. Inspiration boards don’t really need logic or order at all. They are just well, inspiring for lack of a better word. I hope this inspires you to make your own. (pun certainly intended).

All my images came from my Pinterest. You can find it here  and see about 6,000 more things that could land on my next inspiration board.

Heres one that almost made the board that just makes me giggle:

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(If you make an inspiration board please do share it with me, I’d love to see it!).

DIY: Dream Catchers

The past few months I have been on a dream catcher spree. Making them left and right simply because they’re pretty…They are all over my room as you can see:

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This week I decided to make yet another dream catcher, using the naturally dyed fabric I did a tutorial on a few weeks ago. The results looked like this:

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So here’s how to make your own dream catcher!!!!!!

Here’s what you’ll be needing:

Supplies

-1/2 of an embroidery hoop. (each hoop can make two)

-Any color Fabric strips. (In my case I used my beet dyed muslin)

-Feathers (bought or found)

-Yarn (any color)

-An assortment of beads

 

Phase one: Covering the embroidery hoop.

1. Take a piece of your fabric and tie it to the embroidery hoop

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2. Wrap the fabric tightly around the hoop until you have cover its entirety.

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3. Secure the end with a knot and tuck it under the fabric so it remains unseen

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Phase two: The inside

1. Take a long piece on yarn, about the length of your wingspan, and tie one end to the hoop

2. Cross the yarn to the outside edge

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3. loop the yarn around the back of the hoop and cross in front of the yarn. This is your basic knot for each stitch

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4. Continue the stitches around the remainder of the hoop. (The closer together the stitches the more elaborate the design)

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4. Once you have completed the first row make a stitch onto the second row. You can do this by looping the middle of one of your first stitches. That brings the yarn inside.

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5. Continue making stitches until you have reached the center of the dream catcher. Then you will tie a regular know to secure it in place

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Phase three : (And my favorite part) The Fringe

1. Take the strips of fabric and cut them into various lengths.

2. Secure them onto the bottom of the dream catcher

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The amount of fringe is up to you, I say the more the merrier!

After your dream catcher should look like this:

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It still looks a little empty so

3. Take the leftover yarn and cut it into various lengths.

4.Tie the feathers onto one end of the yarn

5. Add beads if you wish

The final product can look like this!

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Or one of these

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All of these were done with the same tutorial. With slightly different fringe, and hoop sizes.

Let me know if this helps and post your dreamcatchers in the comments so I can see what you all are making!!!!