Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Let's Talk: Patience & TV

This semester in Paris I've been taking a photography class. Of all my non-illustration based classes, this one's proving to be the most fun! Creating an image is creating an image, no matter what medium you're using. My prof pointed this out to me when I had my complain-y "I'm an illustrator not a photographer!" pants on. I don't always understand what he's saying (mumbled rambles in French are even harder to understand than ones in English) but this statement really got me.

For this assignment we had to pick a scene from a movie that really stood out to us and re-create it. I chose to do the sleepover scene from Grease and ended up doing the part where Rizzo sings to Elvis asking him to keep his pelvis far from her! For those of you who follow me on instagram, now my fake-freckle attempts make sense - it was for this assignment!

(the original scene)

I digress. Doing this project (though really, REALLY fun) got me realizing something; I have become so impatient with watching movies. I get bored and distracted so easily. I check my facebook, my instagram, hell sometimes I start reading the news on my phone, all while my movie plays and I miss dialogue and important scenes. This is not a testament to the quality of the movies I choose (though admittedly I sometimes give movies a chance when I really should just trust the reviews...), it's because I've been watching nothing but TV shows since being in Paris.


1. TV shows are so easy to watch online, and being away from home I don't have a DVD player or my brother's Xbox or Netflix (there is no French Netflix) for movies here.

2. It's easier to fit in an episode of my favourite show in between homework or classes. And easier to justify watching a shorter episode when you really should be doing something productive...

3. The episodes are designed to be fast paced, suspenseful, and to leave you hanging at the end wanting more. They cater directly to the easily distracted.

4. I care more about the characters because I've been following some of them for years (anyone else have a Grey's Anatomy guilty pleasure?)

5. I don't even have to wait a week to watch the next episode since I can start a show at any time online and binge-watch entire seasons all at once (Game of Thrones I'm looking at you)!

Now, just because I can justify it doesn't mean I think it's a good thing. 
Shows have their merits of course, but movies are a different kind of art form. They are one-time masterpieces, not on-going, so they have to prove themselves and their worthiness all at once. The character development is trickier since it has to happen within a few hours, not a few seasons. Sure this means there are a lot of crap movies where this isn't achieved, but it also means there are some brilliant ones with inspired minds behind the scripts and characters and sets and costumes and soundtracks and just everything (think every Wes Anderson film ever). It just takes a little bit of patience to weed through the bad ones and focus for longer periods of time, through the highs and lows of the movie. Patience to get to know new characters every time and learn to love or hate them in the span of a few hours. Patience to take the time to sit and watch a movie instead of binge watch episodes of the latest trendiest show.

I'm going to work on this. I think it's important to watch films, not only to appreciate them as an art form, but to take the time to slow down and practice patience. Patience is a virtue, as the saying goes, and I can't help but feel my patience dwindle as my TV consumption goes up. It'll be easier to watch movies when I go back home to Canada (41 days!) and get reunited with my dvd player and Netflix, but that doesn't mean I can't start now!

So, what movies do you guys recommend? Seen anything wonderful recently?

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Illustration: Jackalope

My illustrator friend Erik was drawing a wee little jackalope and encouraged me to draw one too so we could compare. I know they're make believe, but jackalopes are such majestic little creatures! I've had the pencil drawing finished since before my Copenhagen/Belgium trip, and I was sooo looking forward to coming back to colour it and finish it up! I challenged myself to give him curly horns and let me tell ya, they were certainly a challenge. I think they turned out ok though!

I miss my illustration folks back in Canada - fellow students, teachers, all of them. We have such a fun little community and I am so excited for next year with them. It will also be my last year at OCAD... holy guacamole, where has the time flown?

Ps. Check out Erik's illustration work here. He's a talented dude!


Friday, April 25, 2014

Copenhagen: Mini Guide!

Hey everyone! I hope you all had lovely Easter weekends filled with chocolate and family. I am back from my travels and have lots to share!!

My first stop; Copenhagen.
Holy guacamole guys, I loved this city. My time there was too short, and I will certainly be back.
I thought I would share with you guys my personal 'mini guide' of places to eat and places to see - because sometimes information on the internet can be so plentiful that good information becomes sparse. Hopefully my insight will be 'good' to some, if you ever intend on some Copenhagen traveling (which you should - it's amazing there.)

Have you ever thought of porridge as a treat? Maybe you got lucky and grew up with an amazing porridge maker, or liked it from the start. For me however, porridge was  always far from luxurious. Until I ate at Grød. We went two mornings in a row to this adorable porridge shop. My personal favourite? The Dulce de Leche (Caramel sauce) oatmeal, with apples and nuts. They also make wicked lattes. Win win win win. I loved this place!

The Little Mermaid:
Did you know the original Little Mermaid is a story by famous Danish writer, Hans Christian Andersen? There's a beautiful little statue in Copenhagen of a little mermaid that is surprisingly small, but still a must see! You can also check out the nearby star fortress 'Kastellet', for a nice little walk.

We happened upon Slice of San Fancisco café, mostly because I saw "BURRITOS' on the sign outside. My penchant for burritos always leads me to good things - I loved this place! Miriam, the lovely owner, has such a spirit and I was glad to get to talking with her about her delicious cheesecake (which has garnered some good press, for good reason!). She is from San Francisco but moved to Copenhagen 20(21?) years ago, and opened her café just 9 months ago. Her cheesecake is a must-try, as is her one of a kind apple pie with chili added to the recipe... holy yum. The burrito was great too, and the lovely service from Miriam and her daughter was the cherry on top. Definitely recommend!

Freetown Christiania is the 'hippie commune' of sorts in Copenhagen, it was REALLY cool to visit and walk through! You're not allowed to take photos on the main street, since they sell weed there quite openly (which is quite the controversy in Copenhagen it seems), so I didn't take out my camera obviously. But if you want a relaxed afternoon with yummy food and a really chill atmosphere, definitely stop by this place! I would have liked to stay longer, but the company I was with wasn't in the mood to stop for long. Oh well, next time!

Pedestrian Streets:
There are many pedestrian streets in the center of Copenhagen, with lots of shops and beautiful design to see. Most of our time in Copenhagen was spent just wandering and exploring, spotting towers poking up above the buildings and walking towards them to see what we'd find. We were lucky with the weather too, so it was doable!

Café Munk was our dinner spot of choice! Often we'd over-eat for lunch (when we visited family or snacked on whatever else we found), and Café Munk was a great find for both big meals or smaller options. The indian food options were delicious, vegetarian friendly, and really hit the spot! We really liked the service and the music, and the free wifi was nice too, hehe. I also tried the icecream for dessert, and it was super crazy delicious!

Hopefully this'll help anyone looking to make a trip to Copenhagen in the future near or far! The people of Copenhagen are so friendly and helpful. One moment that really marked me was when walking home at night, a woman fell off her bike and had trouble getting up (whether that was a result of a few beers or not, I'm not sure, haha) but immediately, two people who had just crossed to the other side of the street ran back to help her, and a man from the bar at the corner also ran out, all without hesitation. So sweet! I also encountered many helpful folks as I navigated my way to the city from the airport on the various metros and trains. It's definitely a feel-good atmosphere!

Have any of you guys been to Copenhagen before? What were your favourite spots??

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Humpday Digs 23.04.14

 • These works of art created by autonomous machines with art-making devices attached to them. Things like wind up toys and clock mechanisms - what a sweet idea!

• I made this recipe for breakfast rice pudding the other day and it was DELISH, and a great way to use up leftover rice from the previous night's dinner!

• My friend posted this collection of animals wrapped in burritos on my wall on facebook. It is perfect.


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Outfit 1.o

(shirt: Mango, bag: Barnacle Bags, pants: Scotch & Soda, shoes: Everlane)

Remember when I used to do actual outfit posts? I stopped doing them, but that doesn't mean my interest in fashion has disappeared. It is, after all, a form of design, and lord knows I love all things design! I am also looking to satiate this shopping urge I've been having, without spending any money/buying more clothes than I can fit in my suitcase when I return to Canada in two months! And so, I may just share some outfit collages with you guys here instead of too much real shopping!

Trends I've been loving lately:
• Tropical 'hawaiian prints' I'm so happy these are 'in' right now, I've always loved them even though they can be tacky!
• Simplicity. I need more of it to balance my tendencies towards the patterned things in life.
• Neutrals. Especially warm leathery neutrals.

 Tomorrow I am off to Copenhagen for a few days, then Belgium for a few after that, all to meet and see relatives of mine! I was a little sad that I'm missing Easter with my family this year, it's always one of my favourite holidays (partly because I love mini-eggs so damn much, which I have yet to find here, ahhh!) so I'm happy that even though I'm away from home I'll be with family over Easter. It may not be the family I usually spend it with, but it will be family nonetheless and just as filled with laughter and food I'm sure! :)

What have you got planned for Easter weekend?


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Humpday Digs | 09.04.14

• This series by Katerina Plotnikova with models and animals is so magical! The people and creatures are interacting so naturally and beautifully. It also gives me an itch to dye my hair red, enlist a pet hedgehog as my shoulder-riding sidekick to come with me through all my European adventures and we would be the best of friends for the rest of forever...
 Yea, safe to say I'm in serious animal/pet withdrawal guys. Time for another trip to the cat café (and quick before I become Paris's crazy hedgehog lady!).

These 'floating cities' made by artists bring back all my childhood fantasies of fort building and tree house adventures, except on the water, which is just an extra level of cool. Such dreamy photos too!

• Take a listen to Mac Demarco's new album, Salad days. Fair warning: this album will undoubtedly make you long for summer even more than you already are.

• Any Pingu fans out there? This video made me laugh my face off.

Happy Humpday everyone!

Just short of being creatively titled 'Humpday Humpables', Humpday Digs is a bi-weekly feature on this blog. My intention is to share with you whatever has recently tickled the chin of my fancies or gotten the wheels of my thinktank spinnin'. Maybe it'll do the same for you! Plus, everyone needs a little pick me up on Wednesdays. So grab yourself a beer (or a coffee, depending what time of day it is), kick back and take a look at the glorious things the interwebs have revealed to me this week!

le Graphisme 02

Just taking another crack at Rob Ford (badoom chh)
You may remember the first time I did a satirical illustration on about Rob Fordy, which I posted about here.

This was actually for my typography assignment, hence why it is in French! We had to pick a subject and make a poster in the style of Russian Constructivism, using typography to express our point. I defaulted to the subject of good ol' Fordy!

It was an interesting process to try and explain the Fordy situation to my teacher in French in front of the rest of the class. Go Toronto!


Sunday, April 6, 2014

Society 6 Promo!

Hey folks!
I've been a busy bee this week, so I'm just dropping in to let you all know that there's a fun promotion on Society 6 right now where with the following link, you can get anything in my shop for 5$ off and FREE shipping! Woohoo!

CLICK HERE for the promo to work!

Hope you've all had lovely weekends!