Caught My Eye: A4 Papercut

Friday, April 29, 2011

While I didn't have any breaking new work for you yesterday (as I am still chugging along on my two papers - just citations to go!), here is a great artist that caught my eye this week.

Peter Callasen's "White Hand"

Peter Callesen's artwork* is amazing. He cuts up paper and makes it into 3-dimensional shapes! I encourage you to check out the entire gallery. It is truly amazing what some innovative people can do with just a normal sheet of paper.

*Though it should be pretty obvious, I don't own any of the artwork displayed here!

Absorb some more media with the on-going Caught My Eye series.

DIY Interlude: Process (Part IV)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Alright, we're back on track. This post is all about the concept art that will go into the final collage edits - I chose to work it out in Photoshop beforehand rather than draw and erase over and over (I'm much better at vectoring than using hand-eye coordination!).

I used two reference pictures for this one, both taken during my high school years. One is of me attempting to eat a balloon and the other is of a friend of mine jumping through the air.

Project x Project: Sweaterdress Fantasies

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Ok, so I know that summer is approaching. And I know that my attire will soon be changing from heavy winter coats and thick stockings to light dresses and t-shirts.

But I am still fantasizing about a sweaterdress.

Ever since making my skirt project, I have wanted to move onto other sorts of knitted clothing. I have had a few sweater-making fiascos in the past, but I hope that this time I can get everything just right and make me a fabulous sweaterdress. This will be my great summer project, something to move slowly and carefully on, something to ponder about endlessly until it finally comes to fruition.

Here are some of the patterns I've been contemplating*:

Take Back the Night, Re-Envisioning Political Participation

Monday, April 25, 2011

I haven't gotten very involved with political activism since I've been at Barnard. I had thought that I would be more inclined to it, having been to a fair number of marches and canvassing missions in my high school years, but my interests have been so all over the map that I haven't had the same concentrated chance to get fired up and ready to go in NYC. One of my friends put it nicely when she said that it's difficult to get involved in NYC politics when you haven't lived here for the majority of your life.

And I suppose that's true: when you move to a new place, the first thing you think about is not who the state reps are, but what kind of friendships you're going to make and where you can get a good meal. It's even harder to feel like you need to participate when you are thrown into a sea of people, some of which seem so outstanding in their motivation that you feel like you can take a backseat.

But, after going to Take Back the Night, I've started to think about it, and this nonchalant attitude has gotten me worried.

Caught My Eye: The Difference between Fashion & Style

Friday, April 22, 2011

Hello there! Yesterday I fell silent on the blogging front due to overwhelming attempts at getting my final anthropology paper started (4/15 pages written, whoo!) and today looks like another full one. As you might imagine, the infinite universe of the internet has been set aside for a little while - thus, I am going on a brief hiatus. Never fear, however, as I will be returning on Monday with fabulous insight and excellence!
For now, please enjoy this great image from Indexed and check out all the other awesomeness available at that site!

Check out some more media in the on-going Caught My Eye series.

DIY Interlude: Please Stand By

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

I am at an impasse.

I have come to love the broadsheets that I have created for the collage project so much that I feel it would almost be better to leave them as is (as opposed to cutting them up into all sorts of cool shapes), although that was not my original intention for the project. What's a crafter to do?

I believe that this "stuck-ness" is another part of my process that gets downplayed when looking at the finished project. In the midst of things, I will spend countless hours thinking about how to do something that will end up taking about two hours total. Brainstorming and setting those thoughts aside to gestate for a little while is ultimately an integral piece of the whole creativity pie.

So, fair readers, I entreat you to help me out. Check out the last DIY Interlude post and tell me: how would you like to see these pieces end up? Cut into shapes? Left as is? Something completely different? Let me know!*

*And, if I don't get any comments, it'll just be one big surprise!

Take a look at the rest of this collage process in steps one, two, four and five.
You can also check out some more posts featuring my photography.

Project x Project: Aspirations and Experiments

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

I am a list addict. That's right, I've admitted it (yet again). And for the upcoming summer I have made a list with subsections of items that I want to begin or complete during that time.

But this time I've done three things that are a tad bit different with the list:
1. I have made all the statements into "I want to..." forms
2. I have decided whether they are an aspiration or an experiment and indicated that
3. I have put a reason next to it about why I want to do such a thing

Barnard Prospective Experience

Monday, April 18, 2011

This weekend, I attended a long set of prospective student functions and hosted two "prospies" last night (hence the lack of musical interlude this Sunday). I must admit, a fair bit of nostalgia and thought did occur. So, I offer you my criticism.

Sorry general readers, this post is pretty specific to the Barnard/Columbia experience - check out last week's and the rest of this week's posts for something less school-focused!

Ain't I A Woman? Recap

Friday, April 15, 2011

Since the last few weeks have been so action-packed, I am going to skip my typical "Caught My Eye" post this week to tell you about the Ain't I A Woman? even that I attended on Monday.

First: the background. I am a blogger for Refuse the Silence, an organization headed by the great Morgane Richardson and the people that hosted this event. And, because I am a huge nerd, I got giddy at the idea of seeing some of my favorite bloggers speak at this event about something I really care about: race in the feminist movement.

 Me and Latoya Peterson (editor of Racialicious) after the event! Don't we look chilled out?

Breaking New Work: Draw-a-Thon Recap

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Oh my, this week has been photo-heavy! Below are two views of the final drawing that I did during the 5 hour Draw-a-thon last weekend. I felt like the first four hours were really a warm-up, consisting of shorter poses and some medium length ones. I am notorious, however, for not being able to adapt myself to very short poses - I need to work on that! So, when the final hour-long post came up, this is what I produced.
As for the Draw-a-thon itself, it was a really great experience! I drank more soda than I have in quite some time that day (perhaps an attempt to stay awake, perhaps because I am a sugar-fiend sometimes). I also decided to take off my headphones and come into the "real" world, which was great because they had a pretty awesome playlist for this shindig. I always enjoy going to Friday Night and Saturday Morning Sketch, but I think this one really fostered a lot of camaraderie between us artists because it was so long. Anyway, enjoy the pictures and check out the rest of my photographic journeys with DIY Interlude and Project x Project this week!

Check out some more of my drawings and photography.

DIY Interlude: Collage Process (Part II)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Here we are, back for part two! This post is in the form of a photographic narrative, so every chunk of text is accompanied by a colorful and enlightening photograph. Read on and enjoy!

Project x Project: Chugging Along

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

At one point in my academic career, I wasn't going out. I would haul up in my room, do my school activities, and come home. And, while this might work for some people (my boyfriend included), I get a serious case of cabin fever.
So, although it's not technically a "project," my personal goal for these last few weeks has been to go out somewhere and do something cool each week. Last weekend, I kicked it into overdrive by going to Brooklyn for a Refuse the Silence interview and going back to a park that brings up a lot of memories for me - mostly from pre-college, when a hip hop festival was being hosted there! So, enjoy the photos below and let me know what you think about personal time versus work time management.

Ain't I A Woman Event Tonight!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Tonight I am attending the Refuse the Silence* event "Ain't I A Woman?" talking about race in the feminist movement. I am very excited to go, but unfortunately that doesn't leave me with a ton of time to post today. Regular posting will resume tomorrow, and expect a fabulous recap by the end of the week! 
Also, if you're in the New York area and can get to Brooklyn between 6pm and midnight, come join us!

*Just in case you didn't know, Refuse the Silence is another blog that I write for that deals with issues facing women of color on college campuses. Check out the link above to learn more!

Read my recap of the Ain't I A Woman? event.

Musical Interlude (Part IV)

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Here is some more music that I like to groove to! I have been on a foreign language kick recently and, since I actually understand French, these songs are quite the craving fix.

Zazie - Je Suis Un Homme

Yelle - Je Veux Te Voir

Edith Piaf - La Vie En Rose

Check out some more great music in the Musical Interlude series.

Caught My Eye: Tim Burton's Vincent Animation

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Sometimes when I am working for a very long time (as I did/am doing today), I like to take a break and watch mindless Youtube videos...
Well, this one is not as mindless as some of the others that I break with, but I remember really enjoying this Tim Burton short animation, most likely for it's quirky and dark tone. Please enjoy it and send me any Youtube videos that I can use to distract myself this weekend as I write two papers and prepare for an exam!


The Draw-a-thon was great last night! I did a lot of tester drawings that I was not so happy with, but that got me back in the groove, and then came out with a really large and very nice drawing at the end. Pictures will be forthcoming.

See more media in the on-going series Caught My Eye.

Gearing Up for a Draw-a-thon!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Tonight I am on a mission to draw like I have never drawn... since last semester! The Columbia Artist's Society is having their end-of-the-year Draw-a-thon starting in just a few minutes; that means a five hour figure drawing bonanza like you've never seen before. That also means, unfortunately, I will not be putting up my regular Caught My Eye post tonight. Never fear, however, because I will get it out tomorrow afternoon. "See" you all then!

Check out some of my drawings, including one from this Draw-a-thon!
You can also see some of my photography.

DIY Interlude: Collage Process (Part I)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

In this post, I want to begin take you through my process of making art through the example of making a collage. I have been wanting to start this project for a while now, so I think it will be interesting to track my steps over the next few weeks. Hope you have a good time watching it all unfold!

First Stage: Ideas
I always struggle in the idea process. I have an idea, think it's great, revise it over and over, and stress about what was reallythe best iteration of that idea. For example, here are some sketches that I did in thinking about this collage project (click for it to be bigger):

If you multiply all the sections of these sketches by about 1000, then you will get the amount of re-workings that I performed in my head. One big one was that the slogan I wanted to use changed from "EVERY WOMAN IS A REAL WOMAN" to "COME AS YOU ARE." I am also still not sure about the pose that I want to use.

I also laid out the large pieces of paper I'll be working on in several different configurations until I came down to this one as my favorite:

Take a look at the rest of this collage process in steps two, three, four and five.
You can also check out some more posts featuring my photography.

Project x Project: Pressing the Record Button

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A project that I have wanted to launch for a while, but have not yet dared to test out, is to read some of my work aloud and read them as podcast-like posts for this blog. Today I am taking the plunge. I will start with a story* that I wrote for a creative writing class I did last semester, since that seemed related to the previous post I put up about academics and creativity. Enjoy, and be sure to tell me how I did in the comments!

*This story will also be posted after the jump for people who choose to or can only read it rather than hear it. Yay!

Academics and Creativity

Monday, April 4, 2011

It is time for me to tackle the double-edged sword that has been affecting me all of my college life thus far: the complicated relationship between my creative and academic minds.

I have devoted myself to academics, which is a major privilege and portion of my daily life. I am lucky enough to be able to learn about such diverse topics as medical anthropology and American literature after 1945. I get to choose based on my interests rather than a rigid course requirements list - a benefit allowed to humanities majors that I take full advantage of. Yet sometimes I get restless.
It is mostly inexplicable, like the desire to pick up materials I haven't touched in a while and put them immediately back down. "Where are you going with that?" I hear the voice in my head say, "You know you have a fifteen page paper due next week." And then I pack away whatever creative impulse I may have had in order to read more source material.
In these instances, I feel as if my academic priorities foreclose upon my creative ones. While I get a proliferation of ideas from all the new things that I'm learning, transferring those ideas into creative expression is put on hold in favor of doing the academic work necessary for that moment. On certain days, it feels like I've left half of myself in the bottom of a drawer or up on a shelf. Waiting is the most common state I am in.

But, while it seem that the marriage of my two minds is an uncomfortable one, I still believe it's a necessary union.
The beauty of putting these two together is most accessible when I am in a writing or drawing course. I get feedback on my otherwise solitary efforts and am encouraged to go ahead with more. I am allowed a space to roll out new material and talk about it. The experience breathes new life into the dusty corners of my creative brain, letting me enter again into a balmy equilibrium.
It is obviously harder to come by when I am taking completely reading courses and am lodged in books, but I value those experiences too. The writer's greatest pastime is to read, of course.

In short, I am torn about how to feel in academia as a creative person. so I am turning it over to anyone who finds themselves wanting to create in an academic setting: does academia stifle or liberate you? Do you feel like there is room for both the creative and academic states of mind? Are there ways they can combine or do you keep them totally separate? Let me know in your comments.

You may also be interested in reading my opinion piece Single Sex Education for Women and Girls.
You can also take a look at my writing.

Musical Interlude (Part III)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Hope you like these videos below; as always, let me know if you can find what makes them all similar! Personally, I've not been very challenging so far, so it might be a no-brainer.

Ai Otsuka - Planetarium

hANGRY and ANGRY - Sadistic Dance

Asian Kung Fu Generation - Rewrite

Also, if you find that listening to this great Japanese-made music makes you want to donate to the tsunami relief funds, here is a great primer on how to do that from HowStuffWorks.

Check out some more great music in the Musical Interlude series.

Caught My Eye: Think Simple Now

Friday, April 1, 2011

I have mentioned before that Think Simple Now is a great website for making you feel better and learn about how to deal with complex situations, but just in case you haven't checked it out, I encourage you to! Here is a round up of my favorite articles: