Thursday, January 29, 2015

When sick, your body needs ice cream and soup

I’m sick, so I’m eating ice cream for breakfast in bed.  With cereal sprinkled on a small teacup of sugary vanilla-cool goodness, I know my breakfast is not one of champions. My superhero self has been knocked on her butt, and while NYC braced itself for a huge storm, I laid around indifferently, hoping the snow would bury us in, and I could heal myself and crawl out intact after the thaw. The snow did not plummet down on the city, but some bug came and attacked me. Less than a week ago I sat on a plane full of excitement, headed to the east coast for a blaze of shoots and some time to hang out with my favorite people in the city.  Now I feel most of my time has washed away, with only 4 workdays remaining after my last 3 days have passed in a daze.

Before laid up in bed with a backache, headache, pathetic cough, zero energy, and dizziness, I had been on a gradual ride. My first few days included reciting haikus, figure nudes with dramatic light and a smoke machine, a “romantic” duo shoot with my pal Inna B_G, and a shoot where I got to remind one of my perviest photographer friends that there is some merit in art nudes. I also played MUA and stylist for an editorial shoot – something I do not get to do enough of.  And another great session of bodyscapes with an art photographer who understands that strange angles and anonymous images can make for awesome art. The final shoot before I went out of commission was my customary caffeine-fueled collaboration with a photographer who encourages my flair of weird art , with a bit of classically beautiful work thrown in the mix , and the same photographer friend who ended up caring for my pitiful ass last night as I deemed a shared bed or a cramped love-seat unsuitable for my sickly self, and sought out other shelter.

I have survived on ice cream and soup the past three days. I gravitate towards these things whenever sick – figuring my body needs the calories, and we all know the purported magical healing properties of soup. My father's side of the family would agree with the ice cream, and my mother with the soup (but she would advise matzoh ball soup above all), so a combination of both and one can't go wrong. 

Photographed by TLGee
Brooklyn, NYC
Hair and MUA by model
Styling by photographer

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Sugar sex kitten

Much better than a Dunkin' Donut
Photographed by Warren Hukill

I ate a donut, which means I’ll probably have a sugar crash. This quickly consumed fluff of sugar and fat was cold and a little stale – a Dunkin' Donut from a stand in the Stamford Connecticut train station. Most of my low quality, high in sugar impulse buys are when there are no other options and I am faced with enough hunger to not think my ideas through. I know I am a bit hungry, my brain wants to be fed, and my eyes see a stand with shiny donuts, and nothing else. I have been conditioned to think donuts are delicious, most people think sweets look appealing, our bodies know sugar is sweet and can provide a quick energy rush. Yet every time faced with this predicament, I hear my mind proclaiming, “donuts may be delicious but stale, train station ones are not worth the sugar and calories,” and usually resist the urge to stroll up and exchange a dollar for fleeting contentment. Those who know me may be aghast to read about my consumption of a fast food chain dessert, as I usually whine about not supporting huge fast food chains, but when the options are slim, and my thinking hindered, I do not always make the right choices.

The train rolls back to Manhattan, quickly passing from Stamford to the city, and my stomach grumbles, now poked with a sugar stick and reminded of its existence. As is the norm, my NYC trip has taken me to Connecticut yesterday, and today as well, and the next week and a half will be punctuated by rides to New Jersey and Long Island.  My half day involved rolling around nude on a hardwood floor, putting on heels and confining myself to the undercarriage of a coffee table, removing my shoes and posing on top of the table in a more orderly fashion, running outside with boots to take the snow photos that I do not do, donning crotch-less stripper wear and glamming up my face, and rolling around on a bed, once again nude. I have known this photographer a handful of years and my ability to go from the girl who wears plastic bags around her socks and feet to stay warm while trudging through the snow, to dolled up “sex kitten” for a shoot came as a bit of surprise. Photos to come eventually.

Third Floor Productions
"sex kitten"

My art needs less rules; my art needs release.

My feet, clad in wool socks and wrapped in plastic bags, are tucked warmly within my favorite boots, Steve Maddens, half a size too large.  My last pair of boots, the same mark and style, accompanied me through the snowy streets of NYC just last year, down alligator paths in the Florida everglades, and up and down rock-strewn hikes in Australia. Once deemed a favorite pair, my shoes will be worn until their death. A hole in the sole is not a problem until rainy season; tearing fabric on the top, and sneakers remain acceptable until my toes begin to stick out.  I bade farewell to my last boots one chilly Portland day, replacements sighted and in hand, not a moment too soon.  Just barely a shoe - half the top was affixed to the sole with a bit of gummy glue to thank. As a child I would only wear Payless shoes – their cheap quality and sizing somehow fit my little, unsophisticated feet.  Now I scoff my nose at that place, having learned a bit more quality makes for more supported feet and a happier me. Cold feet, and the chill will rise through your body; uncomfortable feet, and your whole back could be thrown out of alignment. I am not overly fancy; I see sale shoes and second hand ones as an acceptable sort, but things that are cheap, rather than inexpensive, have come to have a hidden price.

I hit a turning point this year and realized I am slightly grown up. Not entirely mature, but old enough to bade goodbye to some of my youthful insecurities. I’m 30 and have been living life with my own quirks and flair for the past handful of years. I have been without an apartment of my own for years, and the room that has been mine is barely taller than my body, bent in half.  My life has taken a departure from what my adolescent self knew to be my path, having been appointed and grasped onto the title of a musician, knowing no other identity. I stand certain I am an artist but my art in itself is not as clear. Classical music had always been a project to work at, and the chase for perfection a game with no end.  On occasion my soul sang through musical line, but the rules held too strictly. My art needs less rules; my art needs release.

 Photographed by Tim Bradshaw
Sydney, AUS

One glorious day in Sydney, Australia, Tim Bradshaw and I visited La Perouse, a seaside area popular with photographers. The sun was high, the rocks gorgeous, and we had the place to ourselves; crashing water below the cliffs, small gusts of wind, and warmth to share. This was my first shoot with Tim, and as shoots tend to go, the more we bounced around, enjoying the caffeine high and freedom of space, the better our photos became. As we shot, a mixture of nude frolicking and work, the sun inched down and approached the golden hour. Our decided shoot time had come to a close when the light was perfect, and I urged to keep shooting just a little longer, to make use of the dazzling light. Fearless within the realm of caution, I scooted towards the edge of the rocks, still firmly planted in reality. Pose, click, pose, click, we moved in a dance of body and limbs, until a small crack sounded beneath me, and a few rocks shattered away. I was within safety, but we took the cue that the performance was over.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Technology Meltdown

Nothing Ever Happens
Not True

I had a technology meltdown. My phone thought 24% battery life was equal to zero, and would power off without warning. My computer was a clunky brick the entire time owned, but functioned smoothly until a phase of the "pinwheel of death" when replacement was approaching. My computer must have learned she was soon to be set aside, and decided to leave my life on her own volition, so for a week and a half before my new, lightweight Mac arrived in the mail, I was without a computer. While I don't need much when modeling, in order to actually set up my schedule I have to spend at least three times as many hours on the computer as every hour worked, and my iphone works but not efficiently. Emails have piled up, and I far fewer people know I am now on a work trip than should have, but at least now I have a replacement computer.

My now deceased computer is dismantled, and the hard drive encased to use as an external drive with this new one. (I felt special going to the technology store, buying the enclosure kit and extracting my hard drive, thus proving I can be a little bit handy.) The main frame of the machine will eventually be part of a conceptual photo series or video.

I am currently in NYC and will be here until February 3, when I will be available in Philadelphia, Washington DC and Baltimore. These photos are from my summer walks in the city, and edited on my plane from Houston to NYC thanks to the portableness of my Macbook Air.

City Boat

Industrial Shadows

Williamsburg Bridge

In Brooklyn

Train Station near Woodstock, NY