*snuggling in with*winter*

“In the depths of winter, I finally learned there was in me an invincible summer” Albert Camus

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We are influenced by nature- our environments, weather, seasons, etc. They all carry their own energies, symbols, comforts or discomforts- all of which effect our own energies, our emotions, perceptions and in turn, our behaviors. When I was young and would take Myspace surveys, I remember always struggling with the “Favorite Season” question. I thought for sure it was summer. It’s sunny and warm, I have no school, I got to explore a lot more.. but I would always stop myself torn, as every season holds such intimate personality and beauty/fun/mystery of its own.

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Now that I am a bit older and happen to be in a very introspective, reflective, committed-to-personal-growth era of my life, winter has become a special friend for me. Its resonance feels to parallel my own and leaves me feeling so free, supported, motivated, with confidence and manageable stress. Winter and I can also feel isolated and lonely but I feel a deep “okay” with that; aware that just as life’s cycles continue like spring returning each year- so too will new life bloom in my world, in its own time.

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Winter is now here in full swing. The neighborhoods have been blanketed in ice from sunrise to sunset for about a week now and many areas have received snow. The temperature last night was 28 degrees (-2 degrees Celsius for readers in other countries) and now at 2:30pm the next day only 33 (1 degrees Celsius). I really hate being cold, REALLY, so it is a bit surprising for me to be so in Love with winter, but it’s just so cozy and reflective.

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Winter is beautiful for it’s scenery

But most of all for me,

Winter is beautiful for being a nurturing catalyst to growth.

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In such a busy, commercial American city it can be difficult to find true peace and quiet. With winter in the city I observe a slower pace, a greater awareness of appreciation, holiday good cheer and deeds, more quality time with loved ones, more quality time with ones self, cultivating creativity and more opportunities to “just be” alive, cozy, live simpler. It’s refreshing.

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“I do an awful lot of thinking and dreaming about things in the past and the future – the timelessness of the rocks and the hills – all the people who have existed there. I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape – the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn’t show.” -Andrew Wyeth

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“In a way Winter is the real Spring- the time when 
the inner things happen, the resurgence of nature.” -

Edna O’Brien

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:Kymatica:

I watched a documentary today called, Kymatica. It touches on many topics in humanity and Consciousness Studies but also how it all fits within society, government, history, and our future as a species. This was the focus of my undergraduate studies as well as the priority of interest for my personal life since. When I come across new (to me) material that explains such complexities so cleanly I get really excited, connected and inspired to share with others who may be interested as well.

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In this age of free information, I believe it’s our responsibility to learn about humans and society, who we are, how we function and what we are involved in… no matter how hard, complex, self-damning or who tries to discredit or discourage otherwise. To further understand oneself is to me, one of the most important aspects of being alive. To become aware of and break harmful habits, transform the ego, grasp control of ones’ own power, truly grow to understand and therefore empathize with the human experience as a whole; with ourselves and with one other: family, friends, strangers, foreigners, politicians, even enemies…  TO EVOLVE. I also think behind all of this, it’s important to be aware of our rights as humans and citizens and the facts of history and government which influence or control most of our every day behaviors. This movie does a remarkable job breaking down incredibly complex subjects and showing the sticky inner web of humanity. Full length version is below…

 

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It can be frustrating to find “the right words” to express feelings to the outside world – especially when they don’t exist… One of many reasons why I love and believe traveling and cross culture integration is so interesting and important.

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. *{ rain }* .

This post begins with an apology; my attention has been distracted by a few temporary projects and I’ve neglected posting for a few weeks. So I’m sorry, but I’m back! Summer has now turned to fall and the heavy clouds and slower pace have nudged me into my own season of long-procrastinated projects, creativity and cleaning. In Seattle, our summer started pretty late and appropriately stuck around longer than usual. Surprisingly, I found myself looking forward to the promised rains in this part of the country and I felt an unexpected peace when they finally arrived.

Rain has been the backdrop for the majority of my life. I walked to school in it, played sports in it, had recess in it, went camping in it, rode my bike in it, basically just grew up in it. Possibly because of this, I didn’t have as much wonder about rain as I did with many other natural phenomena. I just recently recognized this as I became more aware of a growing, unfamiliar affinity and raw appreciation for something I’ve been around my whole life.

I look forward to storms and rain showers, they feel almost like a form of emotional and physical cleansing. I love the power of rain’s dynamic states, how it can be oh so gentle or incredibly forceful, spiritual or physical, nurturing or a burden, metaphorical or scientific, life giving or life taking. More recently for me, a humbling experience; a reminder of my respect and reliance on nature and the systems of our Earth and Universe. I am grateful and excited by this unfolding relationship.



. J e f f . R e i d .

I’ve known Jeff for 8 or so years now, introduced by a friend for our mutual connection to the same film school. Through the years, he has been a great source of information and inspiration for me in my pursuit of photography and film.

We were introduced because he was studying at the film school I was set to attend after highschool. Our friendship began as communication about what to expect at school and such but I ended up going a different route and not attending film school. We kept in touch through the years which includes him opening his home to me when I would be in LA for work (thank you again, by the way!). He has obvious skills and a great visual eye, but he is also a great guy.

Jeff grew up in a small town in Washington state. It is picturesquely surrounded by water and natural scenery as well as having numerous homes in lovely Victorian architecture. I myself have many fond memories of visiting there as a child. The diverse scenery of this corner of the globe is ideal to grow a fond appreciation for nature, lighting, and the desire to preserve such beautiful landscapes.

“Everything seems to fade away when I hold a camera in my hands; problems and frustrations seem to disappear. Trying to see the world in a unique way is both a joy and a welcomed challenge. Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, I was always surrounded by natural beauty. At an early age I became aware of how I could capture this within a photograph.” –Jeff Reid

One thing I love about Jeff’s photography is that beyond his skill, he consistently brings scenes of unspoiled nature. He goes backpacking and hiking into breathtaking areas and documents places not many people often see. From his home state of Washington to many places across California, Mexico, all the way to his European backpacking adventure, I always look forward to his photos. I also feel comfortable and know I can go to him with questions, fears or anything as I grow into a photographer. He always tries to help the best he can and I really appreciate and respect him. I am happy to have met him and even happier we’ve stayed in touch.

“I love to travel and find that I can’t stay in one place for too long, without exploring elsewhere. Whether it’s putting a 30+ pound backpack on and trekking into the mountains, far from another human soul- or hopping on a plane and flying into an urban jungle- I get a rush out of wandering.” -Jeff Reid

“Photography is another great passion of mine. It seems to be the perfect companion to travel. My camera helps push me farther outside of my comfort zone, the extra mile into the unknown…” -Jeff Reid

He currently lives in Los Angeles, Ca and aside from his photography, his day job is a Colorist/Online Editor and he also does freelance video editing (editing reel below). Thank you Jeff, for all the knowledge you’ve shared through the years and for simply being such a friendly, chill guy :)

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Jeff Reid Photography

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[Travel Blog]

“Versatile -Blogger- Award”

I’ve been on WordPress for almost a month now and I’m still learning how to use parts of it, including all the social memes and such that go on in the  blogging world. I was recently twice nominated for the “Versatile Blogger Award” which is basically a way for bloggers to recognize eachother and pass on other blogs they like, I guess helping bring new viewers to eachother’s sites. I don’t usually participate in this kind of stuff, but I think it’s a good way to scatter more viewers around to new pages, connect people and show appreciation for others’ work.

The rules of accepting the “award”:
1] Thank who nominated you in your post.
2] Share 7 things about yourself.
3] Pass the award along to 15 other blogs you love and let them know (if you’re on WordPress, I notified you).

So, thank you, “youasamachine.com” for nominating me. She runs a blog encouraging others to maintain their bodies through everyday health and fitness, specifically using their own body weight at home.

Also, The Four Rooms, thank you for your nomination and kind words. I have just started looking through his blog, but it centers around the concept from an ancient Indian proverb that we all are a house of four rooms: Mental, Physical, Emotional and Spiritual  “Most of us tend to live in one room most of the time but unless we go into every room every day, even if only to keep it aired, we are not a complete person”.

  1. I’m in love with music and my kitty of 17+ years.
  2. I was born deaf in my left ear but had tubes in for the first few years of my life. I now have super acute hearing, 20/15 vision and see magical weirdness in the air :)
  3. Favorite [colors] iridescent, crimson, white, black, maroon, turquoise.
  4. Favorite [food] pear gelato, chocolate, raspberries, Italian pizza, cheese, mango, nutella, pesto.
  5. My passions are neurology, psychology & development, theoretical physics, children, music, art, astrology, geometry, patterns in spirituality through time/cultures, the exploration and progression of quantum theory and the relationships between them all.
  6. I am Polish, German, Irish, Romanian, English, French.
  7. I had a Near Death Experience at age 6 from head trauma during a bike accident, was on the news. I remember my experience existing elsewhere. This was and continues to impact my perception and acceptance of reality, life and death.
[images are my ode to iridescence]

h u m a n – L ❤ v e

photo: Mary Black Foundation

How exciting it was to wake up and find my post on street art had been *Freshly Pressed* and seen by so many people! A few days before this, I had installed a site meter which included geolocation where I can see the cities and/or countries of my visitors. I am in love with the world, traveling and meeting people from different cultures so it’s interesting for me to know where someone has read my thoughts. It was fun to see all the different countries and read through the supportive comments.

This post is an ode to that experience, to the beauty and variety of our species  and to all the ways people from around the world come together: art, music, internet, traveling, ideas, etc. Thank you everyone, for your kind words! The main point of making this blog was to reach out, connect and share myself with anyone who happened to be interested and I feel blessed. Love!…

photo: Jillian Zamora Photography

photo: Volkstudio

photo: John Harvey

photo: Carrie Mae Weems

photo: Mike Milosh

photo: Tim Navis

photo: Gleaton

photo: Chenman

photo: Igor Amelkovich

photo: Samar Jodha

. … ❤ … .

>> S t r e e t . A r t <<

The two final quarters of my Bachelor studies were done on contract in Europe. No classes, teachers or classmates; just me exploring a dream, soaking in all I possibly could. I wrote many papers, one of my finals being a 16-pager on “European Happiness: An Eastern Perspective on a Western World” where I focused on certain aspects of European culture that I observed contributing to their expression of identity and search for happiness. Some areas of studies were public art, graffiti and architecture. I have included pieces from my paper below on street art (don’t mind the citations) and pictures of pieces that I love from around the world.

by Eelus, "nesting" in London

by Inti in Paris. Photo: Yoyolabellut

In an age of such complex political systems governing over so many people, many are left feeling oppressed, unheard and hopeless in their individual voices. Although a crime in almost all areas of the world, graffiti is gaining serious respect as an art form and popularity as a powerful means of self-expression. It can be careless defacement, but at its heart exists as public expressions using pictures and words carrying artistic or political messages.

by Herakut. Portsmouth, UK

by Fintan Switzer, "Adam". Killarney, Ireland

by Iemza. Reims, France

Painting on our surrounding environments has been fulfilling our need of  expression for thousands of years. Graffiti comes from the Italian word “graffiato” which means “scratched” (Bingham, 2010). Forms of graffiti can be traced all the way back to ancient cave paintings, hieroglyphs, and even sayings, names and drawings of politicians found on building sides in the remains of Pompeii (Barbieri, 2008). It has since become one of the largest artistic movements of the 20th century.

3D street painting:

by Edgar Mueller. Dun Laoghaire, Ireland. Geldern, Germany. by Julian Beever

Edgar Mueller. Russia

Many artists say it is not out of boredom or personal vendetta, rather a way for an individual or group of oppressed people to get their message to the masses in a way that cannot be ignored.  Often intelligent, shocking, powerful and/or humorous pictures and slogans are used to gain attention and make people think. A famous example of this is the Berlin Wall in Germany. After its construction separating the West from communist East Berlin, the people of the West protested the Wall by defacing it in some of the most powerful, political and emotional graffiti of modern times (Bingham, 2010).  The messages and styles within graffiti speak of the cultures they reflect at the time of creation.

This is Banksy… An unidentified British graffiti artist who has traveled the world leaving his famous marks behind, including on the Israeli West Bank barrier. Banksy is very popular and controversial. I recommend watching his film called, “Exit Through the Gift Shop”.

Do the times shape the artist, or does the artist shape the times?

West Bank barrier

^^^ Banksy section. End ^^^

When we take an art history course, or buy an art history book from a store, we are told about the same artists over and over and are directed to what is “good art” and what is worth our time and energy to focus on. I am not sure who made these determinations, but some may argue it is an opinion of a few that is being shoved down the throats of many (Howells, 2003). Regardless of their medium, graffiti artists are able to reach a certain depth of human emotion and experience, which is exactly what art at its best does. It makes you think and feel in real, powerful ways. It opens doors to release emotion and lets others know they are not alone in their human or political frustrations.

Unknown. East London

ROA. Vienna, Austria

Moose. Reverse graffiti

by Alberto de Pedro. Aranjuez station Madrid, Spain

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Definitely future posts to come on technique, artists and other pieces…

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