Showing posts with label Graffiti. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Graffiti. Show all posts

Thursday, October 1, 2015


What kind of person are you? Do you deliberately mistreat people or try to manipulate them into doing what you want? Well I don't. My personal policy with people is not to make others do things they do not wish to. Your character defines who you are and how you'll be perceived in this life. Being bad mannered or deliberately cruel when you don't get your way reflects upon you not others. I don't treat others badly when they treat me badly. I simply remain compassionate by giving them space when their behavior is disappointing & enjoy my life. I understand that they want something but passive aggressive behavior will not get it. Being up front with others may get you what you desire. 

Why don't I retaliate? Some people thrive on a reaction while others are simply fighting with themselves. Anyhow it won’t really help matters to hurt others back.

Ok, today I’ll give you a Buddhist answer… In Buddhism, when seeking truths and wisdom you come to realize that you cannot change a person’s character & you can only accept and appreciate them the way they are. A person’s behavior can modified a bit for a short time but not forced or manipulated to permanently change. You will find yourself angry, frustrated and quite let down if you continue to try to change others. They must desire to change on their own for they are autonomous and free to do as they wish. Even if it means deliberately trying to hurt you. The choice you have… putting yourself in a position to get hurt or not. 

In essence you don’t place your happiness in things you can’t control. You can’t control people but you can control yourself. Once you understand this you will be happier and life will change. 

There’s a parable that demonstrates the true nature of character. I can tell it two ways but I'll share the Buddhist version.

There were two monks walking through the forest after a rainstorm. As they passed a small puddle they saw a scorpion drowning in the water. One of the monks bent down and reached out to help the scorpion. As soon as he tried to assist the frantic creature, it stung his fingers and he dropped the Scorpion back into the puddle. The monk tried again to reach out to the struggling creature and once again dropped the scorpion when he was stung. The other monk was confused by his actions but looked on quietly. Finally after numerous efforts, the other monk inquired, “Why do you keep trying to help that creature? It stings you every time you go near it.” The monk smiled and reached down once more. “It is his nature to sting, it is my nature to help. Soon the pain of his sting will stop hurting me and he will be saved, or he will stop being afraid and be saved. You cannot stop compassion so easily.” This time as the Scorpion stung the Monk once again he took a leaf from the ground and helped the Scorpion out to safety. 

People treat others how they wish to be treated. Some people are accustomed to giving & receiving hurt back. You don’t stop being yourself because of others unkindness. You continue to treat others kindly, if that is who you are. Being cruel to someone who is cruel to you will do no good. If your heart is angry and resentful looking for the moment to make someone pay for what they've done to you; then you are never going to be happy. They are accustomed to being mistreated and expect you to respond unkindly.

It may be hard when people lash out and act badly but realize it is about them, not you. The simple answer for appreciating friends, family and strangers is this: Love them just as they are without expectations. Try receiving others without regret, judgment or expectations. 

When somebody needs my help, I try to use my wisdom, love and compassion and find a way to help them. Similar to the monk I rely upon knowing myself and my limitations when entering situations with others, but understand that only they can decide to change.

Here’s a new story from the hair series I’ve been on and off working on. It was a little something inspired by a lot of change this year. And yes D Vol 2 is done along with a few other things. I don't know if I'll release the stories on the blog or just in the Amazon store. But I am thinking of releasing a bit of darkness on the blog for the month of Halloween... Anyhoo, I'm excited for all the books to come out? Are you? 

Do you try to manipulate & control others or do you control yourself? 

Kisses, m. 


“You changed.” He says when I walk through the door. I wanted to surprise him when I returned.

I miss his smile but he's not smiling when he says the words. I can't read if it's disappointment or hurt that I didn't tell him I would come.

“Yes, do you like?” I pause cautiously.

“It's darker. Your hair. And longer. You're thinner. Are you...?”

“Fine. I'm fine. I needed to be healthy and my hair did too.”

Stepping closer he touches my face and turns my head. His touch feels distant and foreign when he caresses my neck and runs his fingers through the length of my hair. 

“How are you?” I interrupt him before he can lean in to kiss me. 

“Wondering why you didn't tell me. Where've you been for the last week? It's bad enough I can't see you cause you're miles away but to avoid my calls. And then show up like this? Like a stranger.”

Tightly gripping my hair he realizes his anger and let’s go. Grabbing his waist I pull before he can walk away. 

“I wanted to surprise you. I missed you and wrapped things up quickly. It took all week. 

“You scared me.”

“I didn't mean to.”

“When did you change?”

“The weight has been gradual but the hair is new. It's a little messy but...”

”It's perfect... Don't change a thing.” He says pulling me closer.

"Nothing?" I look into his eyes for reassurance.

"No." He says running his fingers across the small of my back and kissing the top of my head. 

"Really? I can think of something I would change right now?"

"What's that?" He leans back, smiling with that grin I've been missing for too long.

"Kiss me and never let me go again."

"We can do that." 

Friday, December 26, 2014


Ah my prince leaves me love notes! haha. not really... they don't often do that anymore do they?  

Love, love, love... there's a lot of talk about it lately. I've witnessed a few friends break-ups very up close and personal. I've heard a few people call others cowards for not risking everything to be in it or maintain it. Being single myself and experiencing awkwardness in the past, ah well, my take is still this... You can't force men to be in love with you and you can't control what they do. And they aren't cowards for not being in love with you or not being ready to be in love with a woman. They are brave men for knowing that they are not ready for love, because to use a woman instead of love her is a bigger tragedy and hurtful. But you can make people smile once in a while. With that said I'll say this: I've made a few guys I know blush, smile and irritated enough to avoid me, over the last few weeks. Wonderful, right!? Maybe not. Why? Love notes... Yes, I suppose its a newer series. I haven't a clue what to do with them yet. 

So it all started a few weeks back when I hurt my shoulder, back and chest and ended up on bed rest. After reading a few pieces from a book by Tyler Knott and re-reading the "love letter to my future love" it occurred to me that there aren't many love notes out there from women to men in the modern time. And I thought it might brighten a man's day to get a note because just reading one of Tyler's notes makes me simply swoon and smile all day just thinking of how sweet it is. I don't know what to say except... yes the notes were/are inspired. So to anyone please please don't be mad at me for being inspired by you. It is a complement. So... Anyhow I hope you enjoy the notes. 

Here's an older story about overthinking things... 

kisses, m.


Logic? I ask you to… and you dare to tell me of logic. This is your answer? We are walking beneath a billion stars tonight and there’s nothing rational about what I’m asking you. I want your reaction not your thought. Think of all the people out there in this world thinking instead of reacting. All of them under control and tightly wrapped. Quite frankly where’s the fun in all that control?

Don’t answer me. Listen.

Logic. It’s a funny thing. Will make your head go against everything your heart wants. And you know what you’ll hate yourself for listening to it.

For instance take a look at that couple in that front window enjoying a candlelit dinner. They’re talking about something. About to enjoy the moment with a kiss. Wait. Take another look. The woman is slapping the man instead of enjoying his kiss. That’s logic. She’s afraid to go with the moment. And look not a moment later… there he is still holding her hand. Comforting her. Reminding her that he still loves her even though she’s afraid. She’s spurned him and he goes back in again. It’s certainly not logic. That’s insanity.

What is that? Well it’s entirely up to you. Most of the time I’m pretty sure it’s doubt. That little voice in the back of your head telling you “WAIT” when you know it’s the right time. Whenever you hear doubt in the back your mind, don’t listen to it. You know what I say? Be unreasonable. Follow your heart. It may be insane, but it’s the one thing that you won’t regret fifty years later.

So right now, beneath these billions of stars, across from that illogical couple, tell me...

Only this time, don’t think about it. No logic.

Will you runaway with me?

Friday, May 13, 2011

Where oh Where?

Where oh where?

Where oh where could I find myself this week?

Sunday mornings are typically for brunches and discussion. After the morning chitter-chatter of Saturday Night’s events you’ll find yourself running into a person or two from the previous engagement between heading to meet up with the remaining usual characters for some mandatory window shopping before you finally end up visiting the family. However, this Sunday I found myself trekking down the state toward the lovely Los Angeles skyline to see… what else? Art.

Two galleries in a matter of hours…

Art in the Streets.

Graffiti in the Streets Gallery. LA. 2011.
Where can you find Keith Haring, Retna, Lee Quinones, Spike Jonze, Banksy, Shepard Fairey, in one place? At the MOCA. Primarily at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA. Los Angeles’s version of the Modern Art museum is currently housing an exhibition that pays tribute for the rise of graffiti as an art form. This exhibition began its run April 17th and will continue until August 8th. I was informed that this is the first major historical exhibit encompassing street art and graffiti to be held in an American Museum. The focus here is on the origins of the style and how it has changed, evolved and merged with other cultures across the world over the course of time.

The exhibit is astounding and quite breathtaking to any admirer of the art in the street. Not only does the art demonstrate its significance in trends it shows how it has united itself in music, film, television, dance and culture. The overall exhibit remains a bit traditional in the sense of a museum. There are two floors that allow you to take in both the sheer scope of work on a ground level and an above deck level. Beneath the roof there are mock-ups from artists across the globe that chronicles the early beginnings of street art to the where it is now. Amid the visual encompassment of the street art you find yourself among film screenings, lectures, artist discussions related to the main event.

Upon entrance you find yourself looking directly at two vehicles covered from hood to trunk in painted paraphernalia. They lay straight in the middle of the exhibit. Along corridors you have paintings, sketches, and murals telling the story of their world. There is more to the look by the art of the street and there is so much more to be told from it. The significant story that can be seen by these varying styles is UNITY. Rarely do we see a united cause across any culture except in art.

Among the maze of rooms and hallways you find yourself immersed in sound as well as visual cues. Along a hallway a bank of mirrors are lined up with sprayed on messages. Upstairs photographic essays tell the tales of the earlier days of streets art. As art goers make their way through the maze of street arts best and brightest they are welcomed to a visual buffet. Some portions are complete homage to the street scene including alley ways, shop windows with complete interiors and replicas of vandals in action standing upon cars and ducking beneath trees. You can turn a corner to find yourself in a dark alley tagged complete with false front buildings, sleeping homeless man and flickering lights. Several artists came together to create scenes that are spread throughout the gallery.
Banksy. LA. 2011.

One might ask of the draw or appeal to visit such an exhibition. For me it was simple, I’ve been a strong admirer of street art and graffiti for nearly a decade. Upon hearing that Banksy was a part of this exhibition it became clear that I must attend. Personally I’ve never come face to face with his work and had always wanted to. After missing a gallery in the UK two years ago I’d always pressed that I might someday make the endeavor to see his work in some capacity. The MOCA showing gave me the opportunity to do so.

For others it almost seems educational if not mandatory that they visit a museum. Our perception of art is based in the knowledge that we have already created everything by traditional means and that is that. This idea seems restrictive. To embrace the beginnings of something new and undisciplined to our mind is to encourage our creative capacity to grow. It might seem biased to say that people neglect to realize how influenced our culture is by something such as graffiti. But they do. It is through our understanding of new art forms that will allow us to grow culturally as a combined people.

If it’s not your cup of tea to look at the influence of street art on our culture, I encourage you to at least step into a museum to understand the origins of art. Art affects politics, music, dance, television, film and life in more ways than seem relevant to mention. Art is a reflection of the times we live in.

Life is Not a Fairytale.

Where can you enjoy a glass of Unicorn tears, play ping pong ala Man Who Fell to Earth with a spaceman, and get a glitter kiss blown to you from a girl trapped across the void of the photographic frame? At the gallery of celebrity photographer Tyler Shields.

Quite frankly, life isn’t a fairytale. And this is the last place you should expect to find one. But don't be surprised if you find so much more than that. 

Life is Not a Fairytale. Tyler Shields. LA. 2011.
The man behind the camera has garnered a reputation for the eccentric with his avant-garde work that borrows influence substantially from pop culture. Much like Willy Wonka opening the gates to his factory, Shields opened the doors on his work and made it public for one day, May 8th minus the need for golden tickets. And much to my own admission I was intrigued and equally excited when the announcement for a public gallery came up as I’ve been an admirer of Shields work for a few years now.

Like many photographers and artists, [among my favorites Avedon, Warhol, LaChapelle] the need to see the work up close is very necessary. You can visit the artist’s website at anytime, but to be honest that never comes close to what it’s like to look at the photography in person. However on this particular instance it happened to be more than simply photography on display. Videos, artwork, a bit of performance art, and a blood creation comprised the gallery.

Entrance is greeted by a spaceman dancing through street along with his own space theme. Once inside you’re looking to the left at a cow in a stall mooing with words EAT ME painted on. Standing next door in another stall is a pile of bright yellow barrels painted with toxic waste symbols. Look head on and lift your eyes to find yourself staring at a giant teddy bear hanging and holding a whip while three lovely masked nudes look down from the wall. The sheer scope and size of the photograph murals are jaw dropping in person. Among the smaller pieces there are a dozen or more large mural sized pieces that fully grab your attention. And of course free with entry limited edition poster prints are handed out like a door prize that you might receive at the Fillmore West after a concert. An idea that is indeed very rockstar as opposed to photographer which speaks for itself.

The Blood Painting. Tyler Shields. LA. 2011.

Move a little more into the scene and you’re greeted by the Pièce de résistance: The Blood Painting. I’ve mentally realized that its a tribute to the artist' friends while watching the “making of” video. It’s truly a love letter to those who donated as it could not be created without their gift of blood. The donators look a bit squeamish as they are drained for art in the video but the piece is given life through their small sacrifice. Although I’m uncertain of the artist’s plans for the piece, it would be nice to see its proceeds go towards a charitable cause.

Should you find yourself thirsty while visiting the factory there are water dispensers complete with bottles of refreshments. One contains Unicorn tears and the other Vampire tears. Have a drink? Pick your poison. Although I doubt either is poison.

As you find yourself winding around the mayhem of imagery there is a ping pong table along with spaceman playing, a room of videos streaming and music that seems as though it never stops. The artist’s taste in music is demonstrated in his video portraits, which on display they run silently with the eeriness of an old film against a metallic wall. The videos are predominantly unreleased material weaved with the usual suspects. Anyone thinking they’ve seen it all. Think again. When you almost want it to end the reel keeps going. I spent in excess of 25 minutes waiting for it to restart. It did not.

Shields photography is a hit and miss cohesive collection that is uniformly spread in large across two rooms at the gallery. There are mostly individual pieces on display. The “never before seen” imagery rests alongside the general standards that Shields belts out on his website regularly. However there are a few collections that fit together nicely. Aside from the B/W masked nudes one includes a bizarre Batman, Superman, Catwoman threesome that looks like fun for some on a Saturday night. Another includes a vampire Lindsay Lohan complete with victim and fellow vampire Michael Trevino hanging on the wall above a red lined wooden coffin. Among the pieces that stand out for myself… Zachary Quinto being dragged through the dirt, Lyndsy Fonseca dancing amid a wind farm, the trio of B/W masked ladies (large), Stop Wasting Time (large) and of course Life is Not a Fairytale (large)…  just to name a few.

Overall Shields has created a world that steps beyond the ordinary in his first public gallery. None of which could be possible without the hard work the artist dedicates and the commitment of the people in his photos. A few pieces ask you to entertain the notion that the images can reach out and pull you in. And for the moment you do. You let them tell you their story while you stand in awe. One of my favorite quotes of Shields, “your imagination can only run wild if you let it” and in this instance I think that’s exactly what the artist has done to the best end result.

As an artist slash photographer Shields has definitely made his own mark in the visual world and will now continue to push the envelope with work in television and film. It will be impressive to see what comes next from Tyler Shields.

My advice? Next time you find the factory open without a golden ticket, go and see for yourself. It won’t be a waste of time. And as long as you aren’t expecting to find a fairytale there you won’t be disappointed.

Needless to say LA was lovely and Sunday was a fun-fun day, in a manner of speaking. My eyebrows are raised thinking… Where oh where will I be next?



Thursday, October 9, 2008





Bottom line: one of the most revolutionary artist's of our generation. I discovered his work about a year back or maybe it's been longer now and I was immediately inspired. Sure up front it's just fucking street art/graff (no wait "vandalism", that's the proper word for it. HAHA. Love it!). But it's not just that, it's taken to a whole new level. Have you ever seen anyone do that with a stencil? Nah, right? But it isn't limited to street art, he works outside the system and challenges what the norm is. He's gone to war with advertisers, museums, etc. His work completely changed how I wanted to design. After finding this type of guerilla art I knew that I was ultimately going to have to change how I would design. Not just how, but what I thought, saw and interpreted from that point forward. I understand now that it's possible to change the fucking stereotype and challenge everything that people have come to KNOW, ACCEPT and TOLERATE. You should never accept or tolerate anything!



-All artists are willing to suffer for their work. But why are so few prepared
to learn to draw?"

-Nothing in the world is more common than unsuccessful people with talent, leave the house before you find something worth staying in for.

-I like to think I have the guts to stand up anonymously in a western democracy and call for things no-one else believes in - like peace and justice and freedom.

-There's nothing more dangerous than someone who wants to make the world a better place."

-A lot of people never use their initiative because nobody told them to

-Some people want to make the world a better place. I just wanna make the world a better-looking place. If you don't like it, you can paint over it!

-Painting something that defies the law of the land is good. Painting something that defies the law of the land and the law of gravity at the same time is ideal."

- Remember crime against property is not real crime. People look at an oil painting and admire the use of brushstrokes to convey meaning. People look at a graffiti painting and admire the use of a drainpipe to gain access.






Someday, I know this will sound completely mad too... I want to be able to put something like this on a wall myself. Will I be tagging sometime soon? I can't say. But I wouldn't mind a ride along situation. Anyone? kisses. m.