Friday, December 28, 2012

stay cozy!

i hope you're all enjoying a few days to relax, eat well, and enjoy the company of your loved ones. from our home to yours, stay cozy!

Friday, December 14, 2012

my morning coffee: light + dark with pablo

A morning jolt of creative inspiration to start your day off right: light + dark with Pablo Picasso.

Something extraordinary happened when Gjon Mili, a LIFE magazine staffer and lighting innovator, visited Pablo Picasso in the South of France in 1949. Mili showed Picasso some of his photos of ice skaters,  jumping in the dark with tiny lights affixed to their skates, and the artist's mind began to race.

“Picasso” LIFE magazine reported at the time, “gave Mili 15 minutes to try one experiment. He was so fascinated by the result that he posed for five sessions, projecting 30 drawings of centaurs, bulls, Greek profiles and his signature. Mili took his photographs in a darkened room, using two cameras, one for side view, another for front view. By leaving the shutters open, he caught the light streaks swirling through space.”

Picasso’s “light drawings”— created with a small electric light in a darkened room — vanished as soon as they were created, and yet they still live, 60 years later, in Mili’s playful, hypnotic images. 

There's something special about the intimacy that these photos captured: seeing art created and the creator. I wonder if that's why more people have trouble understanding what they see on a canvas or as a sculpture. They don't know the artist who made it; they're completely removed from the most important part of the process. If you could see the creator creating, would that change things? I say yes. What do you think?

Beyond light + dark: An excerpt from a 1968 special issue of LIFE, devoted entirely to Picasso, describes a typical scene at his home: “Putting on a mask is sometimes enough to set Picasso off into a kind of witch-doctor frenzy. He roars and writhes behind his gorilla mask, dances away to the mirror, returns in a rubber devil’s mask to swoop down on his daughter Paloma.”

I need to get me some masks. 

See more of Picasso's "light drawings" at Time. All images belong to Time.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

An indie holiday playlist

I really love this time of year. It's busy, and crazy, and filled with desserts, warm drinks, and people you haven't seen in a year. I get so excited about the holidays that I usually start jamming out to Christmas music in October. I put together a few of my favorites this year--an indie Christmas playlist, if you will. Makes for great background music while you're wrapping gifts or entertaining some friends you haven't seen in a while.

I can't get enough Rosie Thomas or The Rosebuds  (hey, hey, North Carolina!) this year. What's your favorite holiday song? Would you rather listen to classics, like good ol' Bing and Frankie?

[FYI, you'll have to download Spotify to listen, if you haven't already. Sorry it's not easier! But at least it's free. ]

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Home for the holidays

Jon and I spent the past week in Connecticut with my lovely in-laws. We enjoyed a 20-headcount Thanksgiving meal, a day trip to Boston, and an adventure in New York City, so the only thing that could have made it better is a short-and-sweet snow storm.

This is exactly what I imagine when I think of Boston. 
Now that we're home (and the puppies are happily back to their routine), we're planning for Christmas. I stumbled across the new Kinfolk promo video this morning, and it made me think, now that's how I want to do Christmas. Especially since we have plans to host brunch and a New Years Eve party.

Kinfolk Volume Six from Kinfolk on Vimeo.

My goal this holiday season is to bring nature indoors and share good food and warm drinks with close friends. We're well on our way: tonight Jon and I set up an espresso machine, an early Christmas gift from his folks. (Did I mention that sipping espresso is one of my favorite things in life?) Once we figure out how to use it, please join us for a latte!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Print Aid NYC

I was supposed to go to New York City today. Not to volunteer for the Hurricane Sandy relief efforts or anything cool like that, unfortunately--to hand pitch a couple of books to some important reviewers for work. But the universe had it in for me: my first flight was canceled, and although my second flight made it up to New York, they turned us around and took us back to North Carolina instead of landing. The icing on the cake? I walked in on a half-naked old man in the women's restroom on my way out of the airport. So I'm home, exhausted, and in my pajamas. Do you ever have days like that? When you're in your pajamas before 4 p.m.?

But while perusing Facebook (that's what most of us do in our PJs at 4 p.m., right?), I found a link to Print Aid NYC, a coalition of New York City-based artists committed to rebuilding the city in the wake of Hurricane Sandy's devastation.  These artists were asked to design posters based on the theme light. 

Samantha Hahn

Liz Libre

Each print is 11x14 inches, digitally printed on Mohawk 120lb acid-free cover weight paper, and just $30. 100% of the proceeds will go to the Mayor's Fund for Hurricane Relief. Pretty cool, right? And you'll have to check back soon; they plan to add new posters by other artists in the near future.

I bought the Empire State of Mind print. Which is your favorite?

Cole Nielson
Linsey Laidlaw
If you're looking for other artistic ways to contribute, check out the Humans of New York & Tumblr Hurricane Sandy Fundraiser. I watch for Brandon's updates on Facebook every day--he has documented the disaster and recovery in a way no news outlet could. 

Here's to hoping for a quick recovery, New York! I'll see you soon.