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Entries in Finding beauty (1)

Tuesday
Nov092010

How To 06: Finding Beauty, Finding The Muses - Self Portraits

I woke up to pouring rain and text messages from photographer Balthazar as he boarded his plane back to Wisconsin.  I'm lucky enough to live in a place that allows me to interract with some of the coolest creative people in the world.  That place is half here and half on the internet.

Every morning it's the same routine.  Get up, make coffee, turn on the computer, check email, make a list, create.  Sometimes it's easy to find inspiration and magic in the day and sometimes it's just plain painful.  Some days are dull, they're rainy, and cold, and drab.  But I manage to have my hands in enough that I'm never wondering what I should do next.

And that's something I've constantly had to work at.  There's nothing worse than being bored with your life or feeling that there's nothing out there.  Sometimes the end of one big project can put you in a bit of a depression.  In those times it's best to take a breather, find new inspiration, and  keep it moving. 

Everyone is born a genius, but the process of living de-geniuses them.
R. Buckminster Fuller

Sometimes it's in the form of photographs.  I use self-portraits as a way of shifting my thought process.  The act of being alone in a room with nothing but a camera and a timer, brings me to a different head space.  Sometimes I get something good, and other times it's unusable.  But there's always a shift and movement is key.  Other times it's fashion.  I'll be the first to admit I'm a girly girl at heart.  But I also believe there is an art to dressing and part of who I am is what I wear.  Mixing the two, I got this set of photos.

The writing on my arms is from a project I'm working on with Mike Lala.  The first set of photographs wil be up soon.  The dress is Betsey Johnson bought for a mere $17 at Beacon's closet.  The necklace is Betsey Johnson as well, a gift from bestie Sherene Schostak, and the shrug from Joyce Leslie for just $20.  I could thrift shop forever.  I love knowing that my clothing had a life of it's own before it came into my posession.  That maybe, just maybe it went to elegant parties, toasted with champagne, and ran along the beach in the spring.  These things inspire me, the thoughts, the stories behind objects.

The photos were taking in my bathroom and treated with vintage coloring.  I like self portraits because they allow me to see different sides of myself.  Growing up I wanted to be a writer and a photographer.  I had vivid dreams of grainy film, and dark rooms filled with images.  I wanted to be Marilyn Monroe and Claudette Colbert combined.  Sometimes we get our wishes in roundabout ways.

"Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius and it's better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring."
Marilyn Monroe

Knowing what makes you tick will lead you to the muse.  Be ridiculous, play around, you don't have to take self portraits but create, even with a point and shoot, a pen and paper, or an iphone hipstamatic. Make things, make yourself, and create the world you want to live in.

Cleanup after the poetry project.

If I knew what the picture was going to be like I wouldn’t make it. It was almost like it was made already.. the challenge is more about trying to make what you can’t think of. -Cindy Sherman