Is there anything more beautiful than a blank page?
All great masterpieces have started with a blank page or canvas. Just meditate on that thought for a moment. It’s a pretty phenomenal, scary, and intensely exciting prospect, isn’t it? With a blank page, there are so many possibilities and perhaps that’s why, at this time of year, I always become completely elated when I think about the blank calendar I have for the next year. What will I fill it with? What kind of story will fill my journal? What great novel will I write? What beautiful photograph will I publish?
There are so many questions with infinite numbers of answers. The vastness of possibility is exciting, astounding, and sometimes dumb-founding. So how do I get over the intense fear of my craft not competing with the possibility? I don’t. In short, it’s an exercise in meditation. I don’t let that blank page stare me down, for, if I look at it too long, the divinity of creation becomes too much and I am paralyzed. Instead, I focus not on the product, but the process of creation. I look at my art, my writing, my journal as a work in progress.
I make mistakes. I stumble and fall. I am imperfect, as are my creations. My works of art are never as perfect or as beautiful, as pure as the blank page. But I don’t strive for perfection, I strive for creation. And in the process of creation lies life itself, messy and terrible and imperfect and beautiful.
I hope you all have a very happy Christmas full of peace, joy, and love. I wish you only the favorable holiday traditions and none of the frustration of the holidays. It is my wish that everyone is healthy, happy, and content this Christmas and I hope to catch up with you all when I return from Florida early next week!
♥ If you’re like me, you’re probably looking for a great bed to hide away in with a book while the weather outside is frightful. Take a gander at this nook bed complete with reading lamps and fluffy down pillow and comforter. I’d love to have one of those!
♥ DC is getting a taste of European simplicity with a new crêperie at the entry to Gallery Place. They are serving up both sweet and savory dishes and are in a prime spot for walk-in traffic. I’m making it a point to check out Crêpes on the Walk before it gets so popular there are lines around the corner.
♥ Interested in archaeology? This Tinysaur would make the perfect addition to your desk space. I think he’s adorable. But I’d have to find him a more adorable and clever name than Rex.
♥ These pretty prints and paper goods from Little Galaxy make me want to sit and write letters all afternoon. If you could write a letter to anyone, who would you write? What would it say? Would you write a story? These works of art are full of fanciful imagination. Inspiring!
♥ No matter if you are an aspiring photographer or professional artist, this adorable FujiFilm Instax Camera will win your heart. While not quite like the ancient Polaroid cameras, this one is lightweight, fashion-forward, and prints clear credit-card sized photos in just a few minutes with a click of a button. Great for photos of family and friends to hang in your office, cubicle, or workspace; perfect for documentation on shoes for storage boxes (or anything else you want to put away for a season or two); ingenious for all those times you want to take photos which can’t be deleted just as easily as taken…
♥ Take a few moments to check out the Freckled Cup, an artist collective that showcases the beauty of people, light, warmth, color, lack of color, skin, touch, mountains, exploration, and most things in between.
♥ Want to leave a little something sweet for Santa? Why not try making these adorable Candy Cane Christmas Tree Cupcakes instead of cookies this year?
♥ Find out from Copyblogger Why James Chartrand Wears Women’s Underpants.
♥ Lover of literature? Why not read Pride and Prejudice told through emoticons? Gave me a laugh and made my day.
♥ If you don’t have a foot fetish now, you might have one once you see these sexy little peds. These hot little numbers peek out of the toe of your shoe, lending a little lingerie to to those dainty little toes.
♥ I love music, particularly when sung by feisty females. This folk-rock duo call themselves Garfunkel and Oates and are just as quirky and strange a combination as they might appear. Making cuss words sound cute and addressing themes like one night stands and singing songs titled “Pregnant Women Are Smug” and “This Party Took A Turn For The Douche”, these California cuties are on my permanent listening rotation.
♥ Try these dreamy photos for a little inspiration: rumor has it they’re from 1962, the same week Yves Saint Laurent’s first collection was shown.
♥ Ever wish for a simpler time? Learn How To Sew A Button: And Other Nifty Things Your Grandmother Knew.
And, with that, my friends, I’m off to Florida to visit with my parents and brother for Christmas. I’m not taking my beloved MacBook, so it may be a while until my next post. I hope in the meantime, these links will keep you satisfied and sated. More next week after I return from my trip.
My roommate and I had a blast playing in the snow today. It was a veritable Snow Day, even though, because it was a Saturday, it didn’t keep us from work. We donned snow gear and headed out into the falling snow in the front and back of our row house here in Vienna and attempted a snow man (the snow was too powdery to stick, though) and had fun taking photos and pretending to shovel off the back deck. We are now finished baking a couple of different sorts of cookies (which I’m giving to my family as Christmas gifts when I see them later this week) and are having a Harry Potter movie marathon safe and warm indoors.
If you had a snow day today, as well, what did you do? If not, what would you do with a day full of falling snow and the hush of quiet streets?
As a kid, I always loved snow days. Growing up in Maine usually meant at least one day of school cancelled before Christmas and, when that happened, my mother would stay home with me and we would bake cookies and wrap Christmas gifts and watch old movies like White Christmas, Holiday Inn, and It’s a Wonderful Life. We would make cocoa or tea and snuggle up on the couch with blankets after taking our darling dog out to play in the snow and shoveling our front stairs. (Dad used to clear the driveway with the snowblower so he could get out and get to work.) I have great memories of those days and I really miss them now that I’m an adult. But today? I got to be a kid again. And I thank my roommate Jessi for indulging my inner child and playing with me, too. I don’t think she minded too much.
This post is part of a weekly feature on this blog called a Simple Image, which is just an image with links to the photographer’s or artist’s own website or blog. If you would like to have your artwork or photography featured, or if you have suggestions on who should be featured, please contact me via email.
Love A La Carte features all the little things that make my life just a little more delicious.
♣ Girls’ Nights making dinner and drinks at home and talking until 2:30 in the morning before we all crash. Geeking out with my favorite girls and talking about everything from sci-fi to Harry Potter Butterbeer recipes to comparing shopping stories and making a gourmet dinner from scratch. It’s all the good stuff.
♣ Zooey Deschanel’s guest appearance on Bones and the following conversations:
Booth: Oh! Wow! Who is this, your sister?
Bones: No, my second cousin.
Margaret: Um, Margaret…
Bones: There’s no resemblance!
Booth: What do you mean? You’re both very beautiful.
Margaret: Beauty and folly are old companions.
Bones: Told you, Benjamin Franklin.
Booth: Right! Hey, good old Ben, your know, he invented electricity and the hundred dollar bill.
Margaret: Neither one of those things is true.
Booth: You’re right, there’s no resemblance, whatsoever.
Bones: You have to stop quoting Benjamin Franklin at me.
Bones: Well, I have no evidence of this, but I feel that every time you do that, it’s not actually communication, I feel the same way when people tell jokes.
Margaret: I’ve never thought of it that way.
Bones: I’d rather hear what you have to say than Benjamin Franklin.
Margaret: That’s the nicest thing anyone’s ever said to me.
♣ Knowing how to resize any pattern (see: Simplicity’s guide). I can’t wait to get started on some projects when I get my sewing machine! (Mom and I have plans to go pattern-shopping next week while I visit her in Florida and I can’t wait!)
♣ The smell of a real evergreen tree. There’s just nothing like the smell of real evergreen to make you feel at one with nature and all life on earth. It smells of Christmas and Yule and Solstice and the dark times of the year and the outdoors and the fresh amidst the cold and ice and rain and snow and sludge.
♣ Hot showers – need I say more?
♣ Down comforters on cold mornings, especially for those few minutes right after the shower before I get dressed.
♣ Tofu Pad Thai. One of my favorite dishes ever. Peanuts, chili, tamarind, coriander, lime and bean sprouts? Yes, please!
♣ Hour-long phone calls with my sweetheart. There’s nothing more comforting than hearing his voice on the phone after a long day at work.
♣ Art nouveau.
♣ Alright, alright, I’ve caved. I’m obsessed with Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance. Due in large part to the medium of video (including the original music video by the artist herself, the routine from So You Think You Can Dance and THIS video).
♣ Only having one week until vacation!
What woman doesn’t feel better about herself when she’s wearing the perfect shade of red lipstick? Such a simple, yet complicated little accessory. Finding the perfect shade can be a challenge, but there’s a certain amount of accomplishment that comes with finding it. It’s such an unexpected little pop of power!
Red is often associated with stop signs and traffic lights – and for good reason. Red is a show-stopper. Red attracts. Red pops. Scientifically speaking, red is a number of similar colors evoked by light consisting predominantly of the longest wavelengths of light discernible by the human eye, in the wavelength range of roughly 630–740 nm (wikipedia). Red is often associated with courage, happiness, heat, energy, and love, as well as passion, anger, blood, and pain. It’s no wonder red is seen as a powerful and intense color.
In design, red evokes urgency. It is known to raise blood pressure and respiratory rates. Red pushes for action.
A little red goes a long way. Use sparingly for tempered passion or in abundance for a bold statement.
Some great examples of bold red websites in a round up from Tutorial Blog.
Indeziner gives a 45 great examples of Using the Color Red in Web Design.
About.com tells you How to Use the Color Red in Feng Shui.
The Llewellyn Encyclopedia offers an article on the Root Chakra, also known as Muladhara, which is associated with the color red and survival, solidarity, grounding, and the body.
What kind of emotions do you associate with the color red? How would you use red in your life? Today, I’m wearing red lipstick as my only pop of color. And, in my opinion, it only comes second to one accessory I know – confidence.