Wednesday, September 30, 2009

back from the 'dacks!

understatement |ˈəndərˌstātmənt|: the past weekend in new york's adirondack state park the fall colors were in their prime. i was lucky to be camping and hiking there at that time.

i was completely entranced by the fiery blaze of brilliant reds, oranges and yellows. it was heaven...

we camped off heart lake - near the adirondack loj in the high peaks region.

one good tree.

i am literally frolicking.

credit for these pictures must be given to the hubby-to-be, bill. i was busy capturing video footage so i am very thankful he got these excellent shots.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

i heart succulents!

this obsession i have with succulents probably began while living in santa barbara (see older post). there are many reasons why i love this plant family and i shall list then in no particular order right now:
1. i like their color palate.
2. love the crazy dr. seuss-like shapes... by the way, the dr. lived in socal thus many of his drawings were inspired by all the wacky plants that are grown (or trimmed) there.
3. succulents remind me of underwater plants and i like anything oceanic because deep down wish i was mermaid...still.
4. due to reasons 1-3 i like to use succulents as artistic inspiration.
5. they are easy to keep alive in your apartment, even if you forget to water them for a month... or two.

i shot these on my last trip to oc.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


hopefully jack's infamously enchanted beans were at least as interesting looking as these cranberry beans from the farmers market. really there was some magic in opening the fuschia spattered pods; you never know what type of marbled design you'll find on the beans themselves - varying from creamy white to deeply purple. unfortunately the color is not retained when cooked (they turn brown,grey-ish, purple evenly). however with olive oil, sage, garlic, and salt they are delicious no matter their appearance.

Monday, September 21, 2009

autumn's arrival

in my humble opinion, no season can hold a flame to fall in new england: the burst of fiery colors against blue skies, the crisp-bright air, pumpkins & apples, sultry spices, cozy sweaters, the crunch of boots on fallen leaves... and it's here - hooray!

author's life update:
after a summer in portland, or and then traipsing about the whole of the u.s. for the past 5 weeks i am back in upstate new york for the next 9 months. as i get back into the flow of a "normal life" i will focus my energies on creative pursuits: video, jewelry design, painting and an etsy shop to boot. consequently this blog will go through some tweaking in the next couple months until i get things streamlined. your comments on upcoming design changes are much appreciated!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

in a jellyfishes' garden

with my face pressed firmly to the glassy wall of the aquarium, i couldn't help feel as if i was stealing a glance into another world's secret dance. one word about jellyfish: trippy. watching them undulate about in the dark tank, i pondered: jellyfish are more advanced than plants, but not quite animals. are they planimals? i found no placard present to explain this however. maybe they are far more advanced than thought. who knows what the cloudy nebulae-like matter of their mysterious mantel holds? i mean really, they look pretty similar to the gaseous clouds surrounding galaxies. and isn't outer space like a giant black aquarium anyway? just think about it... who knew a trip to the long-beach aquarium would be so mind-bending.
on a less far-out level, the shapes and colors of the planimals would make a great painting subject.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

back from oc

so i'm back from orange county after hanging out there for the last 2 weeks. the place i spent my adolescence is, for the most part its the same. though every time i go back a new housing development and strip mall has risen up from where oranges, avocados or strawberries once grew. such is the oc way - but you can't beat those beaches or sunsets. all the smoke from the wildfires made for an especially impressive color intensity:

i owe thanks to my sister kelsey for snapping these photos for me!

Friday, September 4, 2009

grandpa's trains

one of the things i looked most forward to when visiting my grandparent's house as a child, aside from being over-fed candy, was getting to play in grandpa's "train room"... it would be an understatement to say my grandfather is a model train enthusiast. for as long as i can remember he has spent his free-time tinkering in the basement, creating a miniature world of the old-west's yesteryear in doing so. to my young eyes - it was pure magic.
while making my way across the country i stopped into denver for a visit. years later i am still in awe of his ever evolving masterpiece: a miniature train running along the walls of his basement room with equally miniature scenery surrounding. the thing that impresses me now is the fact that he has built this little world entirely by hand - the houses, the painted landscape backdrop, even the trees and shrubbery. he decals on the signs and advertisements, wires the buildings and mini-street lamps for lighting. there is even some interior still life's at work: in the barber shop a man is having a shave, the baker sells a loaf of bread to a polka-dotted dressed women, and men are whetting their whistles at a number of pubs and salons. my favorite little moment occurs in a forested region occupying a corner of the room. there a hunter is taking a moment to relieve himself while leaning on a fallen log - unknown to him a grizzly bear is stalking him inches away. as a kid i got a kick out of the bathhouse, where you could lift the roof off on a hinge and witness 6-8 nude adults of varying sexes bathing. my grandpa's humor really comes through in these instances.
every time i see the train room i am instantly brought back to my childhood. but as a "grown up" i have a new appreciation for the level of detailed work pops has put into his hobby. plus its especially enduring when he plays a soundtrack of real trains from a little boom-box in the room.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

there and back

four days after arriving in upstate new york i promptly hopped a plane back west - to orange county this time, for some family time. i promise i don't have separation anxiety with the west coast, nor do i enjoy packing, unpacking, and re-packing again.
airborne, i retraced the path that took 4 long days of driving in a matter of 5 hours - i had a strangely defeating feeling. its like watching a movie in fast forward, yet there were some awe inspiring moments because the nation is viewed from a completely different perspective.
for example, when you drive through kansas its like driving on a treadmill for hours and hours; the corn-row lined road pierces the flat landscape straight as a ruler. however, when flying over kansas you see a patchwork quilt, an intricate jigsaw puzzle. the massive crops in varying greens and yellows look small and velvety from such high elevation.
in driving you get a sense for mass as you experience all the parts that make a place what it is - yet you miss the whole picture. although, there is an exception to my theory: the grand canyon. even at such height you know the thing is massive- or shall i say grand? the landscape leading up to the canyon is blaa - mostly a pale yellow - the desert landscape of southwestern colorado. then all of a sudden bam! a paint box explosion of reds, oranges & ochres. even from the plane you get a sense for its depth and spread too. i've flown across the country many a time and i don't remember seeing the grand canyon so clearly. that's why i (and the french tourist sitting next to me) were plastered to the double pane porthole snapping photos: