Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

Not everyone celebrates Thanksgiving but I would like to wish you the best on this holiday and everyday after. I like to Look deeper at Thanksgiving's role in our lives. It is a time to recenter and be close with your family. Spending time with your family, blood and not, is very important. It is important to spend time with family because they are who spend the most time bringing you up. I recently realized how I need to see my family or I get off balance.  

I was raised in a house of 6 people so I am used to having loved ones around and lots of them. Living by myself has made me adjust my daily routine. It can be a weird feeling not being close to your family when that's how you grew up. If you are used to being around your loved ones and aren't all the time, make sure you make time to be with them. Life is short and your loved ones need to know how you feel. Vice Versa. If there are people in your life you care about, make sure you tell them!

For the Holiday I went up north to the only place I call home. Home is a particular word to me because I have lived a lot of places. I find my true home to be the woods in central northern Michigan. This is the only place I've always known since birth. 

My family and friends mean the world to me and I would even say that I'd be nothing without them. As people we learn from watching each other over anything. This is why it's important to surround yourself with people you aspire to be like. This post is dedicated to everyone I have ever met, especially the people still in my life because you inspire me everday. I want to thank you for being yourself and working with me, teaching me all I know. You are the reason I do anything. I love you. 

I decided not to edit any of the photos taken today. I used to not believe in editing images because it takes away the integrity of your natural eye and the photo as it was taken. I have developed a natural editing style that I am comfortable with but have the urge to just post my unedited work constantly. Regaurdless, please enjoy these raw photos of my thanksgiving day. 

For this look I gathered some of the classic winter clothes from my family members. I threw a pair of wool snow pants on, matched with a red deer skin button up, my grandmothers old winter coat and a snap back from my grandfather. 

Photos of me by Robert LaCroix

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Turn the Table

The other day I held the door for a police officer who courtiously mumbled "thank you sir" to which I responded "you're welcome!". I looked back at him to see if he would notice; haha nope!
I continued walking while laughing off his mistake.
Life isn't that serious.

This kind of thing happens to me more than you may think. It's not offensive to me because I know who and what I am but I do find it interesting. I find the concept of perception very interesting. I get mistaken for a guy a lot. It just seems like people don't really know what they are looking at any more. The labels are becoming rediculous and deadly. 

I don't think what happened to me is a bad thing until people are treated unethically or inequitably because of their appearance. There are obviously differences between people but that does not make one or the other more valuable than the other. We are all doing different things and should be able to do so. We need everyone for the world to run at maximum capacity but if we are constantly differentiating between eachother by basic concepts like skin color or gender, the world will be incalcuably broken. Humanity. Humility. We can live together in peace but that means we have to open our eyes and mind. Find some understanding. 

The answer is not that someone can or can't do something. It is a matter of either knowing or not knowning and learning or not learning. Understanding or not understanding. Being open or being closed. All humans are capable of anything especially with the resources available to us. We are all able. We are all alive. We all have a right to be here.

We are not programed like robots with the same human functions. This is only a concept created by other people. The times are different. We are in a new age. We are all different people than those who came before us and in that way the same. 

People, humans, we are all capable of doing what we put our minds and hearts to. If you want to do it, do it. Don't limit yourself. Don't limit others either. Find peace in yourself and the world around you. Don't live in fear. Live to learn. 

There is no better or easier time than now. Technology is only getting better and people are getting conscious, faster. If we can't move it, there is a machine. If we don't know it, we can learn. If it doesn't exist yet, we can make it. How do you think we got to this point? Now let's make this place exactly what it was made for!

More than be yourself. Believe yourself.

If the world is your mirror, the world believes in itself when you do. Everyone believes in themselves if you believe in you. When you love yourself the world loves itself. Idealistic, I know, but it's true.

Guns are not toys they are tools. Hands are not weapons they are tools. Our bodies, millions of vessels, are also tools. 

I turned 23 on Saturday and I feel accomplished for my age. Not only am I a professional artist, working for Shinola in Detroit but I am a young alumni of the University of Michigan, living on my own in the city I love.

I feel that anything is possible and I know exactly how to work for it. This weekend solidified my thoughts on a different artistic approach to life and I have recently understood more about my life path. My dreams and goals are now exapnding into bigger better ones. It feels really good to be secured by myself and learning while doing so.

I may surprise you with my next life adventure.

Another thought I will share with you is, WRITE DOWN YOUR GOALS. Speaking from personal truth, writing  ideas and ambitions down, helps you achieve them. I think of it like a list but longer term. If you are writing these things down you are constantly conscious of them. Watch the list of tasks get accomplished until its complete. It feels really good to finish something, big or small.

I say this because I just crossed the last thing off of a pretty important list and it was to get my degree. Now that I have a place in Detroit, I will get my diploma in the mail! I could not be more happy about it! I can't wait to show you!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Be the Truth.

Last post I spoke a lot about listening to yourself to make the best decisions for you. I would like to piggy back off that idea now.

The next big step is to speak your mind. Be honest! Be straight up. 

No one will know how you feel if you don't speak up. Yes this can be hard at times but one thing I don't like is when people assume anything about me or how I feel.  This is only a problem if you aren't comfortable speaking your mind or don't know how to clearly communicate your thoughts. We all struggle with this but that doesn't mean we can't do it!

Do yourself a huge favor.

Speak your mind.

Speak your truth. 

Make sure the people you care about know you care and how you care. Make sure you speak up when something is hurtful to you. Speak up when you have an idea. Speak up when you think some one looks amazing. Speak up when you need some one to talk to. Speak up. When you need a little help, speak up. 

It can be hard to speak up at first but once you put it into practice, you will be a pro.  I can remember a time when I was so closed off to the world, reading what I wrote for a class out loud brought me to tears. 

I was afraid of myself. I didn't know who was talking. My voice was shaking. The story, the words, they were good. Never doubt yourself. If you need to speak your mind be happy to do so.

Life is a gift, there are too many reasons to breathe, stand on your feet, open your eyes. Listen to the world and words around you. Let it guide you. Walk forward knowing its the only way to find the light that surrounds you. Speak your mind because its a blessing to have thoughts. Open your mouth because your voice is the most beautiful meaningful song written. Your song can only be sung by you. Don't be a one hit wonder. Walk, see, talk, breathe, sing, listen, hear, take action. Make Action.

Feel your heart race to the song. One your best friend found, sent to you and you couldn't hold back the motion. You had to move. You had to cry. You had to smile. You had to laugh because you didn't know how to feel. You were so yourself the world stopped. The shine made a new world, the one you put yourself on. Not where you were born or a place you were put into. 

The blessing it is to feel the sadness or loss, the warmth of happiness, the connections of love. A blessing it is to told a heat from within, to feelt he cold so deep. We spend our lives burried in dead things and covered in snow. Forgetting the internal heat and how our hands move to make, to create, keep yourself warm. teach others. reach for the hand. Please don't fall. We can catch each other. 

Be free and disrupt the unnatural balance we've been force feed. Anything is possible if you live this way. Everything is real when you take the wheel. 

This light is so bright. It is yours and you are the only one who has it. When we stand together our lights double. The strength is invincible. Electricity. We are the world. We are each other. The mirror is always in front of you. The gun is always in your hands and the bullet wounds are always yours because no matter where you point it, you shoot yourself. 

Your voice is a tool not a toy. Tell the truth with it. Actions don't speak louder than words. They go together. It was never a competition for one or the other. We need them both. That is how we trust. That is how we live and love together.  Together. You and Me. Not he or she, this or that, just together. 

We made everything around us from the mentality to the landscape. Nature does not stop growing because you sold your soul. No, we live, grow and die just as the plants and trees. We come back as something else. I hope forever better. The sky rains tears, melting snow onto your skin. Never drowning because we are water. If we are water then we never die. We can neither be created or destroyed. 

Speak up when you Love Your Self. 
We are the Dynamic Attack.

We are the Explosive Ingredient.

The Night Awaits. 

The last FishBone 

In the skeleton, 


We laugh. We Lush.


the dorks with 4Eyes.

The PhantomDeer, 


The Swansong 

from 36 Chambers

Echoing, cutting through space.



A family of light.

in the otherwise



Build a home.


This earth. 

Hello friend. It has been a long time since we've talked.

How are you?

Photos by Melania Plasko.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Feel Better.

I am absolutely obsessed with this song. I am pleasantly surprised by how alive Willow Smith is and she speaks the truth. I feel like Willow perfectly captures raw emotion and put it into every element of the song. 

Feel better. 
Get Empowered. 
Get Super Charged.

It is hard to be an emotional person. When you are in tune with your emotions you can tune into others emotions. This is where things can get cmplicated. Emotions are often associated with feelings and feelings are full of different kinds of energy. Energy, like in science, can be transfered from one person or thing to another. Intentionally and unintentionally. What I am trying to say is at a certain level of knowing yourself you enter a different level of conscoiusness where you can feel the people and world around you.  

When you think and feel outside of yourself it is important to make sure you know about it. This is so you can protect yourself from things and people trying to enter your conscious and subconscious. Your body is your container and a tool of life. Your mind and sense of self are held in your brain. Just as your body has different layers for protection and to hold its form so does your mind. I like to call building your mind the mental olympics. When you know yourself very well you can no longer be swayed or moved into places you don't want to be unless you make that decision. 

You making a decision is the key component. Everything in your life in some way or another is a choice and if you feel the things you are doing right now are not your choice I seriously advise you to reconsider what it is you do. This is the essence of being and knowing yourself. Making choices because you think and thought about it. Take care of yourself in the best way you can by being yourself. When you successfully do that you will not be shaken by much.  

It is hard to tune out the voices of your family and friends so you hear your true thoughts unaltered by outside influence. You are the only person who knows what you want and what is best for you. This is not advice for you to stop listening to the people around you. Listening is important too but when it comes to decision time, make damn sure it is what you want. 

Listening to your thoughts is a piece of advice I was given in my last year of school by my dear friend Tarah. Since she said this to me, my life has changed drastically for the better. But this advice goes deeper than making decisions. It plays equally into your reactions and responses to others. When your emotions don't control you, being able to think clearly through any situation lets your thoughts on the bigger picture shine through. 

The bigger picture is always on my mind. My goal is to always have a positive impact on the world and that can only be achieved by being the best me at all times. The only way to be the best me is to just be myself by making sure the decisoins I make are what I really want. This applies to you too! 

So you want to change the world? 

Just BE yourself. 

The world needs you. 

Photos of me by Melania Plasko

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Contrast to the Contrary.

Good Evening! It has been a peaceful weekend in contrast to my busy week. I started the weekend by supporting two of my friends who are DJ's. It was great to see Future Focus and Holographic playing together because they are a dynamic duo. I danced the whole time. 

After work on Friday I stopped by the grocery store to get some lemons and limes for a steam sinus flush later and got my eye brows done. It is amazing the contrast in your face after not having your brows donw for a while. 

When I got home I spent the rest of my evening pampering myself,  First I bowled a pot of water with two lemons cut and squeezed into it. I cut up another two lemons and queezed them into a medium sized mixing bowl.  Once the water with lemon comes to a bowl pour it into the mixing bowl and add a couple drops of lavender oil to the mix. Grab a hand towl. Wrap it around your head and the bowl then start breathing slowly but deeply. Do this for about 10-15 minutes. Let the steam relax you and clear your sinuses.

Next I started the shower where I conditioned my hair, washed it and conditioned again. Exfoliated my face and body with a loofah and a wash cloth. Then I sat in the hot shower and did more deep breathing while thinking. 

After my shower I made dinner and cleaned the kitchen. Fried chicken in olive oil and rice seasoning with a side of rice. I put a little soy sauce over the whole dish. Moved on to rearranging my place and doing some small but detailed decorating. Jabari Gave me these disks that look metalic but are quite reflective. I put them on one of my small walls and moved my table from the dinette to the main room of my studio.

I found some new rugs and with a few small tweaks my place is going to be exactly how I want it to be. Maybe I will have a little house warming! It would be nice to share this space with my friends. :D

I like to play with the rules. So naturally when people tell me not to mix patterns, that's exactly what I like to do. I was feeling particularly bold with this look. Dip died jacket, hounds tooth blazer and shoes, verticle striped shirt,  graph paper pants, horizontal stripe hat, and bright red jewelry to really make you stand out. 

 You may notice the jewelry I have been wearing in my latest looks. These are bangles and necklaces my grandmother gave me. I love the boldnes and brightness of the colors. They are also quite shiney which give them an extra level of depth. I love vintage jewelry, especially from my grandma.

Some times when I get too busy it is hard to stay focused on what I am doing. This is because I am trying do more than one thing at a time and I can get lost in the process. Relaxing weekends like this help me recenter myself by slowing down, getting organized then knocking each task out one at a time. 

When life gets too fast it's hard to stop thinking and listen to your thoughts. Your thoughts are more important than how much you think. Don't forget to slow down to hear your own thoughts about everything involving you. Too often do we get lost in the unnatural balance that people try to force feed us. Don't get too concerned with situations out of your control. Let them play out until its your time to play your piece. You have power too, realize your advantage in all situations by keeping a clear mind. 

This is another reason I often don't follow fashion rules and trends. I find that the rules don't follow suit with my thoughts or opinons. This is why I play with the contrary of what most people are saying and doing. This is by no means something I do maliciously. I do this because testing boundaries are how new ideas are created. More than anything I love to learn and my curiousity leads me to new things every day. 

Don't be afraid of your thoughts. 
You know what is best for you,

So listen. 

Don't be afraid of your voice. 
You know what is best for you,

Speak up.

Even if it's...

Photos by Melania Plasko and Megan LaCroix

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Up To You Now.

For the last two weeks at new job my cowroker Rory and I were trained by a group from Taiwan. They have been training us on their precision manual pad printing and screen printing. The day before everyone left we went out to a traditional Chinese restaurant in Sterling Heights. Rory and I were challenged to eat a chicken foot. We accepted and it wasn't so bad! I thought it was pretty tasty! I have been pleasantly surprised by the authenticity of the restaurants we found. 

Thursday before their trek back home we celerated their visit over dinner. I made a piece of jewelry for the women we worked with to remember us by and to say thank you. Their time with us was invaluable and I can't explain the amount of information we learned in two weeks about more than just dial printing. It is up to us now to make the dials for Shinola based on the teaching we just had. 


Again, I made some amazing friends through work. Rory and I were invited to visit them next year so I plan to learn some Mandrin. I can't wait to visit but we will miss them dearly. Going to work on monday will be a very different pace. 

Getting into a different routine has been a challenge because our location of work has temporarily moved out to Sterling Heights but living where I work and not being in school has given me the time to work on my own projects like Arson Capital. I'v been able to interview several inspiring people around me and the website is getting a face lift! I am hoping to have it all in place by monday. It is up to me now to make my magazine everything I invisioned it.

The hardest part about being an artist and staying true as an artist is working with people. What I have noticed about many artist communities is people tend to be very selfish. Espeically working with other people. There have been many times when I photographed a project and get no name recognition for the work I contribute. 

I don't get down about it. I do the only thing I can in any situation where I feel short changed, I work harder and get better because I know my worth.  It is up to you to get your name out there and if some people you work with aren't doingin their part to support you... don't work with them again. They don't make the cut so snip snip. 

We have more than enough time to make it in the industries we were born to be working in. We have more than enough time to create the projects we were born to make. Just don't give up and know it is up to you. 

Everything in your life is something for you to learn from. Everything that tries to bring you down can make you better. It is up to you to decide though. As a person we are constantly involved with other people and other forces. These things can try to break you, knock you over, etc. to disrupt your natural path to success.

Don't let anything knock you from your natural path to success. 

Learn from your mistakes, learn from watching how your friends are treated, learn form how you are treated, learn from how you treat others. Don't get ugly or nasty because that is how other people are acting. Inverse the flow of energy and words. Instead of learning to treat others in a nagative manner treat people nicely. Greet everyone with a smile. 

Be nice to people who are bringing negativity to you because they probably have only learned how to be negative. Be nice to them because they might just not know how to be positive. Don't feed into the negative energy. It is easy to be negative. If you switch the flow of energy by being positive you will be surprised by the results you get. Not only are you creating better energy for yourself but you have just become more conscious as a human being and that is always a good thing. 

It is up to you now. 

Photos by Melania Plasko

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Fall Back. Daylight Savings.

Well, I guess we will be seeing snow some time soon in the midwest. It's getting cold and with daylight savings, its dark around 6pm. Sounds like winter to me. 

I started at the dial factory for Shinola last week. I am really loving the new job. I am learning a lot of relevant to my career information which excites me. I seem to be picking up the information quick enough. Another coworker and I are being trained by a group of dial prodessionals from Tawain. I found the language barrier to be less stressful when we can speak with our gestures but I plan to pick up some mandrin before the training is over. We were invited out to visit their factory some time next year and I hope this actually happens!

I am being trained most closely by Cho. She is a professional screen printer and a fantastic teacher. I have learned so quickly about her process that I was able to print 61 dials today with only one of them failing her inspections. This made me happy and brought a smile to her face. My skills are quickly improving and this is good news. My new job is not going to feel as amazing when she has to leave but I am so blessed to be part of this project. 


My creativity has been off the scale lately. I think this is due to my recent change in lifestyle. I love my job and it seems to fit more with my personality to be on my own. I think it also has to do with my creative space being the same as my living space. I feel the energy in my place is entirely mine and my energy is powerful in a good way. I feel really good about my life which means I feel inspired. 

I was thinking the other day while driving home that I am living my past dreams. I never thought the day would come where I lived in Detroit, had a job I love, my own place and was producing quality creative work. I am here now and new dreams are being drawn up daily. There are no doubts in my mind of if I will live the new dreams. 

If I can think it, I can do it. 

So I will live them. 

Life is what you make it after all. 

The photos of me were taken by Jabari.