Tuesday, August 28, 2012

5 things I love Tuesday!

1. Light and shadow.
I've been loving my new lens and having a camera that is back in commission! Lately, I've been especially intrigued by scenes that emphasize light and shadow.

2. School supplies!
Probably my favorite part of starting a new-school year is the stationery! I picked up the notebooks, pencil case, and pens inside the pencil case from Muji when I visited New York with my mother about a month ago.
A bunch of the little supplies are from a gift package the lovely Judith sent me all the way from Colorado! The post-its were given to me by Courtney. I have such kind friends!! xo

 Also while I was in New York, I purchased the daily planner below from Anthropologie. This was a splurge for me, but I am so happy with the purchase!

3. Foliage!
I'm so surprised that the leaves are already changing! I noticed red leaves for the first time today while walking around today.

4. Loafers from Salvation Army.
I purchased this pair of loafers on a recent trip to Salvation Army with Kater of All This Happiness. We went on a Wednesday (half-off day!), so they were only about $2.00! I've basically been wearing these every day because they go with just about anything and they're so easy to slip into!

5. RunKeeper app.
It seems like almost every week I've been sharing an iPhone app that I've been loving. I hope this isn't annoying! I'd be lying if I said I don't spend a lot of time on my iPhone.
RunKeeper uses the GPS in your phone to track your runs. It keeps track of distance traveled, current pace, average pace for your run, and calories burned. It really encourages me to keep going and to push myself!
I also love how RunKeeper chimes in while you're listening to music every five minutes to tell you how far you've run, etc.

Have a great week, my loves! xoxoxoxoxo

Monday, August 27, 2012

un weekend en plein air + some thoughts.

 Fallen leaves covered my car's windshield wipers this morning, an indiscreet note left by Mother Nature to remind us to take these next few weeks and cherish them. This summer has been a season of discovery for me and for many of my friends.
I have had some of the most beautiful and most heart-breaking moments these past few months. I feel as though I am re-entering my skin again, becoming much more in touch with facets of myself I had neglected for too long.

My new camera lens finally arrived in the mail and it's almost as though I've regained the ability to express myself thoroughly again. The photographs I take may not speak much or at all to some people, but when I look at them I am immediately reminded of a feeling and the circumstance which created that feeling.
Yesterday, a good friend asked me why I take photos. A simple enough question, one would think, but I stumbled to find an answer. After thinking about it for a while, I still haven't come to a firm conclusion. I can say that photography is a vicious and wonderful circle for me. I take photographs because something is beautiful to me and I am made more aware of beautiful somethings around me because I take photographs.

Sandals from Aldo; Slitted, sheer maxi skirt from Forever 21.
Ring finger ring - Judith's (she forgot it at my place); Turquoise ring from Housing Works.
I cannot walk down a side street in this city and not be astounded by the beauty that surrounds me. I'm sure I sound beyond corny right now, but photography and art are truly what keep me in touch with all the beauty that life has granted us.
Going through a breakup recently, my emotions have been a roller coaster (and not just a rickety old wooden roller coaster, but one of those gut-churning ones with all their flips and twists). I've become much closer with some of my friends and I am extremely grateful for all of their support.

Tea-lights from a party at our house.

This Wednesday, I begin classes for my masters program. I'm excited to stick my nose in a book and feel like I'm doing something academically productive again. Yes, I am the nerd who spends way too much money on stationery and who will most likely be first in line for my class at the bookstore.

I wish everyone a lovely week and I hope that everyone makes the most of what is left from this summer.

Also, please give a listen to one of my old favorite songs by Beirut, "Elephant Gun."

Love! xoxoxo

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

5 things I love Tuesday!

1. Vitamin D
As summer is coming so quickly to an end, I find myself trying to soak up as much of the sun and its precious energy as possible. Having studied in Montreal, I know how much a lack of vitamin D can affect one's mood. And as much as I love fashion trends associated with fall and summer (warm and cozy cardigans, layers galore), I am fighting against myself in order to take off my sweater and let my bare arms soak in as much of summer as is left. I definitely notice a difference in my mood when I've gotten a sufficient amount of sunlight for the day, so I always try to fit it in.

2. Gouache painting!
As I've mentioned previously, I entered my few weeks of unemployment with specific goals is mind. While some of them have yet to be pursued, I have accomplished a few, one of which was to make more artwork. I decided to try gouache as a new medium and although I found it very difficult to get used to for the first hour, eventually I ended up really liking it.

The beauty of gouache is that it's a nice cross between acrylics and watercolor. Its most advantageous watercolor attribute, in my opinion, is the fact that it can be reactivated with water after it dries. Acrylics are basically irreversible once they've dried. In terms of its likeness to acrylics, I look most to the opacity of gouache. This is also what makes gouache a great medium if you are trying to achieve a more graphic look to your paintings.
Below is the photograph off which I based my first gouache painting. I switched out the eggs for a cinnamon bun because I didn't find there to be enough contrast between the color of the eggs and the color of the plate on which they rest. I still have to finish up a bit of the painting.

3. Green, high-waisted shorts from the Salvation Army
I posted about these shorts a while back, but I haven't really had the courage to wear them out until recently. I think I've worn them three times in the past week!
 Also, the above photograph was taken in the bathroom of a bar called Footsie's in Troy. This women's bathroom was amazing. A photo of the bathroom's wallpaper is below.

4. Searching for a new lens.
My camera lens has been broken for quite some time now and I had been neglecting to bring it to the shop for fear of the cost to fix it. I finally sucked it up and brought my camera into the shop and the gentleman told me he could not fix the lens because Nikon no longer sells parts. Therefore, I would have to send the lens into Nikon and risk being totally ripped off.
I decided that the smartest option would be just to buy a new lens. I considered getting a 50 mm fixed focal length lens, but found that I could get this zoom lens for about the same price. I had assumed that the 50 mm would be less expensive, but unfortunately that wasn't the case. I've placed the order and now all I have to do is wait. I can't wait to be able to take higher quality images for this blog! (:

Sigma 18-125mm f/3.5-5.6 AF DC OS HSM Zoom Lens

5. Scramble
Since downloading Scramble Sunday night, I've been absolutely addicted. What's worst about this game is that you have to wait 20 minutes for every token you receive and it takes five coins per game if you want to use as many power-ups as possible. I feel that in this way Scramble is trying to keep me from making Scramble my entire life and I don't know how I feel about that.

I hope you enjoyed!

Happy Tuesday!

Friday, August 17, 2012

the "top-knot."

This is old news, but I am obsessed with the "top-knot" hairstyle. I figured I'd take some time out to express my love. I just think a top-knot is so chic and effortless-looking (basically the Parisienne ideal). It's also a great way to get your hair out of your face without looking sloppy.
The photos shown below have all been re-blogged from one of my favorite Tumblrs, Top-Knot.

via top-knot tumblr; via Autumn Fever tumblr.
via top-knot tumblr; via Kathryn Louise tumblr.

Want to spice up your top-knot? Add a fun elastic or bow! (:
via top-knot tumblr; via Eleanor Mae tumblr.
via top-knot tumblr; via Wet Paint tumblr.
Since I think of a top-knot as being a very symmetrical hairdo, I would either wear it with bangs pulled back or with blunt-cut bangs. If you don't have bangs, you obviously needn't worry about this! The blog A Beautiful Mess has a great tutorial with photographs of how to style a top-know. You can check it out here!
via top-knot tumblr; via Ille Mi Par Esse Deo Videtur tumblr.
Thank you so much for reading and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

5 things I love Tuesday!

1. Taking a few weeks off before grad school.
I had planned for quite some time to take a few weeks off before starting my masters. Once the time finally came, I had a list of things that I wanted to accomplish during my time off. Life got in the way and although I have accomplished some of my goals, some are still left incomplete (i.e. writing a short story, making lots of art). It's been an incredibly rough month for me, though, and I am very grateful that I have this time to get more in touch with myself again. I'm the type of person who gets antsy if I even have an entire day to myself and I think it's important for me to learn to cherish the present instead of always looking towards a light in the future.

My time off has found me grabbing lunch with friends, catching up on the large stack of books I've accumulated from Dove & Hudson, drinking lots of red wine, and taking walks and bike-rides in the beautiful weather. And of course there have been many cups of coffee and time spent blogging in the mix.

I have been quite obsessed with this Tumblr. In the past, I didn't fully understand how so many people were totally enamored with Tumblr, but now I find it to be a great way to get inspired. I use my Tumblr as a kind of inspiration board. This particular blog has an aesthetic that really calls to me.
photo by Valerie Chiang.
photo from Mon Chéri blog.
photo by House of Maryanne.

3. Bare Bones Colorstay nail polish by Revlon
On an even girlier note, I love this nail polish by Revlon. I used to paint my nails two or three times a week, but over the past few months I've been trying to give my nails more of a break. I have nails that are extremely prone to peeling. However, I really enjoy this color because it's a fashionable nude and requires neither a base nor a top coat.

4. Bow iPhone case
I find this iPhone case soooo adorable! I'm really considering purchasing it, but I already have three iPhone cases... Crap.

Premium Quality (iPhone 4S / 4 Bow Bumper Case Skin Cover

This blog was started by one of my best friends, Chris, and a few of his friends from Columbia. They're a very intelligent group of people and their reviews are very well-written and interesting!! They've inspired me to start reading The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, by Junot Díaz. The style in which the book was written really reminds me of White Teeth (one of my favorite novels), by Zadie Smith and I've been really enjoying the book! Whenever I pick it up, I find it hard to put it back down.

Thanks so much for reading!!

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