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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

5 thing's I've learned from the movies.

"You can't lose something you never had."

And Five other life lessons I learned from movie's and some of their best quotes! I admit, I like a cheesy chic flick or two, and every now and then you learn some fantastic lessons from them... like mouths + body piercings = reallllly bad idea. (AKA: The Sweetest Thing) 

Kate Hudson has had some "great advice" (or the writers of her movies do) to dole out being one of my favorite "chic" movie actresses. I admit that the one from the top, "you can't lose something you never had" is from my all time favorite chic flick, How to lose a guy in 10 days. - It's pretty solid advice and I find it works in a lot of situations, like when someone questions their sanity or memory. I find that I use it at least once a day. 

Prince Edward: "Your men love you. If I knew nothing else about you, that would be enough" - From A Knights Tale. 

Now, I know this isn't the normal "girl" movie... but really, it's got Heath, fashion, and romance... so it's awesome in my book. When you choose your mate or your friends - spend a lot of time with the people they hang out with (friends and family) before getting too involved. Chances are if the friends are lying, cheating, drinking, gamblers... you might want to question why that person like / respects them. If they don't have "close" friends that should also be a flag. If you want to learn about someone, look to their friends it will tell you all you need to know. (or they will if you buy them a drink or two)

"Maybe that whole love thing is just a grown-up version of Santa Claus; just a myth we've been fed since childhood. So, we keep buying magazines, joining clubs, and doing therapy and watching movies with hit pop songs played over love montages all in a pathetic attempt to explain why our love Santa keeps getting caught in the chimney"  -Meg Ryan from Kate and Leopold

You should be realistic about love, don't get wrapped up in the passion-blind, Hollywood-esc, magical, fix-all  dreamland version of love. The truth is love is work, you put yourself out there and you do it out of your own personal faith that it's going to be returned. Sometimes, it's not. But next year when Christmas comes around, you should still leave out the cookies, just in case

Hey, buck up! It's not because you're a woman. - Howard Payne from SPEED

Sometimes bad things happen, like getting on the wrong bus. Sometimes, freaking amazing things happen, like Keanu Reeves getting on the bus... but every now and then, you have to be smart enough to run like hell and not end up with a bomb strapped around your chest at the whim of a mad man. Through it all... you gotta remember, it's probably got nothing to do with you personally. Mad men (or the crazy guy in line for coffee, or on the other end of your conference call) are not typically gender specific... you just happen to be standing in line of sight for when they start ranting and raving. Buck up. It's not you. 

This Christmas - Movie 
Kelli Whitfield: Um, this is not funny.
Lisa Moore: No, it's not, but I'm going to keep drinking until it is.

When dealing with families, holiday's or crappy life situations.,.. drink more. If that fails, Use a bottle of baby oil on the floor of the bathroom and beat the crap out of the naked guy who was cheating on you... that's sure to put a smile on your face. I came by this particular movie completely on accident one lazy Sunday, but I have to say... worth it just for this line, and that scene. Totally!


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

We could hang.

I once went on an interview, to be a flight attendant. If you can imagine that! Me, who only three months prior jumped out of a plane to celebrate getting over my fear of flying! Sitting down with some airline personnel and telling them why I really wanted to make a career out of stepping onto a flying death trap every day... pretty amazing at that point in my life. Looking back not getting that job was probably the best thing that ever happened to me. However, I have to say the interview sticks out as one of two that I have had in my life that I remember in detail.

This particular one, oddly enough not because I had to convince the room of interviewers that I no longer needed to be drunk to get on a plane... without ever really coping to the fact that it was the only way I could fly for years. But rather for the unique questions that I was asked. One in particular, is a rather interesting cocktail question... but it does open the door for a bit of insight into the persons soul.

If you took a flight and were going to be sitting next to one person for 14 hours, who would you take with you... living or dead?

It's like my secret fantasy coffee date, where I get to hang out with super interesting people and learn lots of fascinating things.

So welcome to "over share" day, where you get a sneak peek into the crazy that is me! 

The answer I gave to the interview question was Henry Rollins. Yea. That's right, singer for Black Flag and Rollins Band, neck bulging, bit actor, tattooed, and aging alternative icon... (his words... not mine) But also, a FANTASTIC story teller! When he is not on tour singing, at other acting gigs, or hanging out in LA... he is roaming the country doing spoken word tours. Which at first... I thought... eh, not my gig. However, a friend hooked me up with one of the first tour disks he put out, and I have been a HUGE fan ever sense.
(I would love to know who took this shot! I wish it were me! Sadly I am not Hanks Photographer.) 

I'm telling you now if you want a bit of humor in your life today you have GOT to listen to "Erik the Pilot" 

I did have to qualify my answer, explaining that he is kind of a modern day renaissance man, he wears a lot of different professional hats, as well as being a great story teller, he is well traveled going to some really interesting places, and he really tries to expand his mind by learning and experiencing new things. I dig that. Some of my favorite stories from him are from his days traveling to Russia and Germany "back in the day" when they warned you against stopping on the side of the road because of the land mines. When I do road trips it's his particularly entertaining screaming and yelling humor that keeps me awake... so obviously he's the man for the plane trip too!  (I will even bring the microphone, Mr. Hank.)

So, you ask.. who else is on my coffee date, or sitting in that plane with me? Who else is invited to that crazy party in my head? Here's my short list.

Anthony Bourdain. - You know there would be great food, interesting topics and a lot of drinking going down. Anthony is another one of those well traveled free spirits who has an interesting take on the world, and how to put together a thoughtful, and thought provoking sentence or two.

Rachel Ray - Not that her and Anthony would sit down together, but Rachel seriously taught me how to cook. I love her, she's in my head every day at dinner time. My family and friends thanks her... A LOT. They would thank her more if she could teach me how not to walk away from my stove, or how to use a kitchen timer... or a measuring cup. But Rachel and I get it... measuring with a coffee cup is FINNNE! Seriously, we could be sisters... I get her cheeky humor and the whole talking with your hands thing.

Angelina and Brad- Either as a boxed set, or as individuals... both are so much more than who they are playing in the next big movie. I want to hear about the places they have been and how they manage their crazy lives between an insane business and loving kids, and doing some great charity work. I want to talk photography with Brad. Seriously... google it. He's no slouch photographer.

Robert Downy Jr - um. Because he is Tony Stark, do I need another reason? OK, he just seems like someone who would be fun to hang out with... I mean really look at that smile! Plus did you know he sings? Check him out with Sting here! WHO KNEW! He looks like he is having so much fun! Love him! I might also have a small thing for dark haired men with good smiles and crazy hair. Funny how I never noticed that before. 

Michelle Rodriguez - Because I am on a mission to have TOP GUN remade in Hollywood with her as Maverick. Seriously! She could pull off that brazen, cocky, hot as heck role, and she's even got the right shades for it already. If Starbuck can be played by Katee Sackhoff I think Michele could MORE than pull off Maverick. Who else would look as hot as Tom playing Volleyball with boys and then racing down the road on a sport bike?  I think she and I would have a S-load of fun and find either a lot of trouble... or something really fast to ride. She feeds my 'living vicariously through others' need.

And come on aren't they just the cutest in this image - they both look like they are blushing! 
Michele and Luke during an interview in the UK for FF6
Luke Evans. - Yea did you see that one coming? I'm not sure what kind of coffee we would have... but I would promise not to be one of the millions of crazy drooling fans who are offing to lick syrup off his chest.
 Honestly, he just looks like a good guy with an interesting story. I'd like to hear it. I've also heard he sings... so Robert might have some competition. There is the smallest clip of it in the linked interview and it only makes me want to find more.

Do you have a secret list? I'd love to hear who is on yours?

Monday, March 17, 2014

Something Green!

Happy St. Patrick's day!

While your enjoying your green beer, or Irish cream coffee... I thought you would also love to see some art that paid a visit to my studio last fall. This half sleeve was done by an artist in Denver for a close friend of mine. Gotta say, the details are amazing! It makes it pretty tempting to visit the artists studio myself on my next visit to Denver!



Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Beauty of Light

Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph. – Matt Hardy


 Technical know-how is not everything when it comes to photography. It is possible for anyone to take a snapshot... it is the few who can transcend that and create magic. Transporting you to a world beyond, creating art, telling the story, and capturing your attention. In today's fast paced, where images (and advertising) is everywhere... your brain is bambared with images.

 So what is it that grabs your attention? What set's images apart?

Completely stepping out of my wheel house this week, I have been talking a lot about age, and beauty and how we perceive ourselves and what we find attractive in others. I think this same rules apply to photography. What captures one persons attention is not always what another will enjoy, or even what we enjoy about ourselves. You can set two photographers down on the same street corner and each will utilize their eye, style, and camera showing you a different scene.

Personally, I think lighting is what first grabs me about a good image. It could be a beach photo, or a portrait... even product photography. If it has interesting light, or balanced light I look... it draws me in for a second glance.


Let's take our good friend the "button" from Little House of Crafting. A bright red, simple button that is one of the hardest things to photography and grab your attention - because it's simple. Plus, it's incredibly hard to shoot because its red, small and reflective. Seriously... take photos of red things, its tough! But it is the prime of how to utilize your light to create interest and capture a simple beauty. The side lighting here catches on the rounded edges and creates a soft bracket effect on the subject matter. It creates a "pop". It also produces a solid black background so all you see is the subject.

Not a believer? The same effect is found here...
I wish I knew who to give photo credits to on this image! Please tell me!!!!
I wish I knew who to give photo credits to on this image  - Please tell me!
Yes! I totally know... it's my newest crush - I had this in the line of images from Tuesday's post but it fit so much better here! Besides, isn't your day better with a little bit of eye candy?

The same side lighting was used to highlight and drop other parts of the image to shadow, so your eye is draw to the subject the photographer wants to showcase. "POP"

Lighting is KEY for bringing beauty, and your subject to the forefront of your images!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Devilishly Handsome

What sends sparks down your spine, tingles your toes? 

What quickens your pulse, or inspires a new crush?

I don't get all twitter-patted over the new Hollywood "it" boy or girl. I can honestly say, I'm not that girl. I've certainly never spoken about the latest heart throb on my blog or stalked someone on social media before. It's just not my gig. Sure there are some standbys that I find myself always excited to see their newest movie or TV show. Some for true acting ability and others because I respect them as people, others because they are great eye candy. However, it's the pretty rare occurrence that I would have anything that resembles a crush or passing interest. I just don't have the time or energy to spend on it.

That was until recently when I came across this image on Pinterest. I was taken, I totally admit it.  


Do you know what got me? The hair... the outfit... the decidedly roguish goatee and "rustic" shave job? Well... yes!! But not at first blush! 

The first thing I noticed (and the reason I pinned it originally) was the crinkle around his eyes. He just looks like someone who LOVES to laugh! He looks like he got caught... having fun, maybe in better light we would see a bit of a blush on his cheeks! It simply feels like an honest moment that was captured, not staged.  I followed the link and much to my surprise learned that this is Luke Evans,one of the actors in The Hobbit. (Who knew? I shamefully admit not me.  I never would have recognized him! Yea I know, I am not "with it" when it comes to Hollywood's up and coming or for that matter... most anyone that's "current" this girl has priorities that don't revolve around Entertainment Tonight!) 

I did a quick Google search (and I'm not even going to lie about how fast I did that!) and found proof that when he laughs... he laughs big! Like his whole heart and soul is opened up and joining in! It's natural, and honest and to be honest with you - it's pretty attractive... mostly because it speaks to how he must enjoy every day... you don't get laugh lines like this and not have a good sense of humor and joy in your life.


I for one, can not get enough of it! I LOVE that his smile effects his whole face! His crinkles spoke to me and I have now have a secret Pinterest board that is full of his images, and interviews as much as it pains me to share that guilty pleasure with you. (and as hard as it is to admit since I am not a "sharer"... I might be cyber stalking him a tad. Like need a 12 step program... a tad.) I will also justify that statement with the fact that he is a sharp dresser, and I was looking for suggestions for a client... (that makes it slightly less creepy right?)

Regardless... I very much fell under the spell of wanting to learn more about him based only on a few simple images. It could be "good photography" but in this case, it was something deeper. These images that captured my attention don't seem to have come from his press office or when he was "on"... they don't appear to be studio "staged" images. (although there are plenty of those around, they seem less... engaging.)  These particular images attracted me and I was drawn to them not for the quality of the image, but for the story the subject told.

I know what your asking... what's my latest crush really doing on the blog today? Dispite my extreme pleasure in sharing him with you... 
Please, allow me to connect the dots! I had a real reason for introducing you today!

I wrote yesterday about my own self image, aging and my own redesign of accepting who I am and how I want people to see me particularly when it comes to my own wrinkles, and eye crinkles. While writing that post, it occurred to me that I have a completely different set of rules when it comes to what I am attracted to and how I see other's. I have been retouching the crinkles out of my personal images because it was something I didn't want to see, and didn't want people to notice about me.

I had to stop and ask myself:  How is it than that the same characteristic is SUCH a huge draw to me when I look at other peoples images? 

Without them, he would just be... lost in the mix of the handsome Hollywood elite. (that's probably not such a bad thing... but that's not the point!) However, with them... I feel like he is telling me something about himself... sharing a story, telling me about his personality. It connects me to him, and makes him feel more real and tangible as a person and not just someone we would see on the big screen. Those lines, creases and crinkles... that's the part that I find handsome... tempting, and sexy and makes me want to learn more about him as a person.

I found this quote from Mr. Luke Evans about when he began (I hope I remember correctly) his first movie... because he has been in theater for some time, and I can't help but think perhaps he faces himself each morning the mirror and like me can't help but make a few faces, tug and pull to recreate that softer younger look we shared 10 years ago. (if that's not true... please don't spoil my small fantasy!)

"I was 30, a fully fledged man, I wasn't a twinkie kid. I didn't have a pretty face, I had rugged lines. I'm not a Twilight boy, I'll never be as good looking as those lads, and that's fair enough. I'm this dude that can play a farmhand and a handyman and sometimes a Greek god. And now I'm playing Count Dracula," he grins, very happy with his lot. 

-Luke Evans interview with the The Gaurdian

I'm just going to take a moment to point out (not that I expect Luke to ever see it... but I am going to say it anyways.) You might not be one of those "twilight boys" and you should do a little dance of joy about that! I couldn't even begin to care about them... none of them have anything unique or special about them... and I personally don't even pause when passing by their images.

You however, come on the scene as the ruggedly sexy, pick me up off the floor (insert maidens swooning here).... damn that man has style... devastatingly handsome man! That "rugged" face that you term as "not as good looking" is simply you holding yourself to different standards as I was. If nothing else, finding your image at this moment in my life... gave me a new perspective and created change in my life. So perhaps, you've done more already for society than countless other "pretty boys", without even trying.

Your face, your health and your heart tell the story of your life... with every fine line, laugh line or gray hair we gain so much more.  It's not something we should hide from or hide from others. We should embrace it, be proud of it... and enjoy ourselves more.

Monday, March 10, 2014

I earned that wrinkle.

 As a society we talk about beauty and what is attractive so often, when it comes to trying this fashion or that diet. During the past few weeks with the Oscars, fashion week and other current news items popping up I have found myself talking a lot about these things with my daughter.

When my daughter and I were discussing her 100 day school project... (They were asked to write about what they would look like, and things that would be different in their lives when they are 100 years old) I found myself with an opportunity to reconsider a conventional way of thinking that society seems perfectly content with promoting.

I admit I was a little shocked, and upset when reviewing the different class projects where many of them (not just my daughter) said that they would be ugly and wrinkled.


Do wrinkles make you ugly? 

I really had to think about this, and my photographer mind set in. I freaked out a little bit to be honest when I realized that I I almost always end up retouching out the crows feet, or some other wrinkles for clients. In fact, when I had my own images taken by another photographer this past year... I retouched my own!

It was vanity at its finest, I know! 

I reevaluated my personal thoughts on the matter as I asked my daughter why she thought wrinkles were ugly, and she said "Because they make you look old." So is old not pretty, can it not be beautiful... even attractive? There it was staring me in the face, the thing that makes us all pull up our cheeks and eyes in the mirror every morning and wish for younger days. It is the reason I have spent countless hours on the computer retouching images to "take off a few years".

I have to say... I wasn't happy about the way that made me feel, as a woman, or as a parent. I suddenly realized that grey hairs are not the only thing we "earn" in this life.


It came at a price. It came with sunny days at the pool with friends, ER visits, divorces, working too hard, playing too hard, heart-ache, passion-blindness, projectile vomit at 2am, over coming my fears, and all the other ups and downs that come with LIVING. I am happy to join the ranks of women who are old enough to have them. I know that my experiences have brought more than wisdom, joy, or disappointment. They have brought me to this perfect moment in my life.

The moment that I can teach my daughter that there is more to beauty than what you see. Where I can explain, each wrinkle tells a story and a lesson. You earn them in your life, and you should be proud that your living long enough to gain them.

So today, I am sharing my wrinkles with you. I earned them, and I am proud to say that I am going to embrace them from this day forward so that I can be a better role model for my daughter.
Image from http://www.kristahaffnerphoto.com/