Tuesday, May 31, 2011

15 Minutes to Live

So I just signed up for the creative challenge of the Trust 30 project - basically you get a prompt every day for 30 days and the challenge is to blog, journal, or create something each of those 30 days.

Here's the first one (since it starts today!):

I guess I would typically write the story of my life, but that's not really the story worth telling.  Well, it is, since I think that everyone's life story is worth telling, but I'd rather take these last few minutes left in my life to try and distill my life down into the lessons that need to be told.  Whatever.  Anyway, here is a story of a little Monkey who deeply loved a Seal and made art together.

The Monkey always felt like he was destined for greatness, because he excelled at academics.  However, everything else he could do (and he could do practically anything) was good, but it was never great.  Jack of all trades, master of none, you know?  Over the years, with growing frustration and difficulty, he realized this and set out to be what he always wanted to be as a wee-little Monkey.  He wanted to be an artist.

Now, the biggest difficulty for this Monkey has been realizing that all the stuff that we see in music videos and TV are things that aren't really important.  Yes, going out and getting drunk and hooking up with random people can be fun, and the glamour of drugs and power, and wealth, and fame and all that are nice things to have.  But when it comes down to it, none of that guarantees happiness.

Monkey thinks that the purpose of life is to simply be happy.  Many people get misguided and have been so hurt that the only way they know of to make themselves happy is to hurt other people.  People like that tend to be abusive, and tyrants, etc. etc.  But really, to be really cheesy, all you need is love.  Happiness is the ability to accept that life isn't your ideal.  Everyone co-exists in this world, and if everyone's ideal (or at least what we think our ideals are) were met - well, it just wouldn't work, since how can one person's conflicting ideal both be in existence?

Anyway, so Monkey realized in a very Buddhist way, that we should all try to be happy and to love ourselves and each other.  Life is hard, but it doesn't have to be unpleasant.  Don't take out student loans out if you can.  Cherish your friends.  Yes, you can choose your family.  Eat less meat (or go vegan if you can).  People who are different are okay as long as they don't harm you.  Money is important only as much as we make it as a collective society.  If you have an excessive of power or money, share it with those in need.  Drive less.  Drink more water.  Remember that you are beautiful and awesome and that no one has any right to take that away.  Tell more people they are jerks and should be nicer.  They're usually jerks because no one lets them know that and they have their own inferiority complexes to deal with.  Be super nice to retail folk who are trying to help you - they are people too.  Don't be rude to customers unless they're rude first.  I really like food  - try new stuff all the time.  Sometimes you just have to take a chance.  Failure isn't the worst thing in the world - living without risk is.  Learn from your screw-ups  and remember that everyone makes mistakes - the greats just learn from them.  Don't look at the clock so much.

Failure is not the end of the world.  Love is pretty awesome, but if you fall out of love, don't force it.

So I guess that's it.  Seal, I love you a lot and thank you for always being there and never stop fighting for your dreams!  Everyone!  Don't stop fighting for your dream.  You're amazing people and if you could harness just a fraction of that magical wonderful goodness that is all inside of each and every one of you the world can be a better place.  Fight for your dreams like you would fight for your life because they are, in fact, the same thing.

Just remember -

Ahhh, what a cliff hanger.  Anyway, if you didn't get the fatalistic nature of this theme (or by the obvious nature of the title), here's the inspiration for the day (by Gwen Bell):

You just discovered you have fifteen minutes to live.
1. Set a timer for fifteen minutes.
2. Write the story that has to be written.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Asian Heritage Street Fair

Hey everyone, I'll be vending as Monkey + Seal this Saturday from 11am-6pm at the Asian Heritage Street Fair.  The programming for the fair looks super cool, and there are a lot of other really great vendors.

It's on Larkin Street between Grove and Ellis.  Anyway, I'll be debuting two new tie designs (think badass ocean creatures), some new tie color combos on old favorites, and Eve and I will both have some new prints up for grabs, including my illustration "Dr. Madness."

Anyway, stop by and hang out and say hi!  Admission is free so we hope to see you there!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Building Stuff

After I got off of work on Sunday, I headed over to Big Umbrella Studios to go build a mobile display unit for our retail space.  I drew up some plans a while back, and the other co-owners got a chance yesterday to go pick up the wood.  Sooo, I worked from around 9:30-11:30 building this thing. 

Off to an inauspicious start, with some 1/2" pieces of plywood, and some 2x4s.

Added some supports to the sidewalls and working on building the bottom front of the display.

Sidewalls and front bottom attached.

Put the top on, possibly the easiest part of the entire building process 

Added some casters so that it's mobile!  Very useful in a gallery with movable walls where we might be changing up the retail space reasonably frequently.

 Ta-da!  Finished, and I started putting some merch on it.  The slanted front is to optimize the display of prints, and the big flat surface can hold tons more.  

Next I'll be working on a display for our ties (and simultaneously, I'll be getting ready for a split show with Eve on June 3rd.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Live painting

Boy do I love live painting!  I did this tonight at a fundraiser event for Japan.  I titled it "The Spirit of Japan Moving Forward" or something like that.  I actually don't remember the exact name, and some person will end up taking it home (at a super, super discount, I might add). Total paint time (for an 18x24) was about 3 hrs.

I did this with spraypaint, acrylic, and ink on a 6 ft x 8 ft movable wall at Big Umbrella for the Cobalt opening on April 14th.  It was super fucking cold out, and I think it helped get me sick.  Managed to bang this out in about 1.5-2 hrs.

Anyway, I really enjoy live painting.  I look forward to many more opportunities to do my thing live.  Fn fun stuff!