Stereotype Snapshot

On Valentine’s Day I was the photographer for this Stereotype Snapshots Photo Booth at a One Billion Rising march/event.

The idea is that you choose a cardboard stereotype from a selection of (for this event gender-related) stereotypes. This is what you find that people see you as. Then, your can either embrace or rebut that stereotype with what you choose to write on the chalkboard.

I chose to combat the “girls are bossy, boys are leaders” double standard, because that is one I have experienced the negative effects of time and time again.IMG_0310To learn more check out…

The Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History (http://www.santacruzmah.org)

The teen program there (of which I am a part of)  called Subjects to Change (http://www.subjectstochange.org)

and the global One Billion Rising Movement (http://www.onebillionrising.org)

The Fungus Among Us

A winter’s walk in the woods…

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Everything was glistening with dampness from all this lovely rain. A mushroom haven.

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The delicately frilled edges of many fungi varieties make me want to pick up a pencil and mimic them in my sketchbook. They are reminiscent of art deco in their flowing organicness.

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Imperfection is perfection for these little creatures…
IMG_1148❤ Trinity

mixtape monday: norah jones

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Norah Jones is my go-to artist for rainy mornings, doodling sessions, and just random moments of relaxation throughout the day. Sometimes I just need to slip into an empty hall between classes, pop in my head phones, and slide my back down the wall until I’m in an upright fetal position and the let her sweet voice wash over me. Here are some of my favorite songs she sings…

1. Summertime – old, mellow jazz just melts my heart

2. Something is Calling You – light and beautifully eerie, lets my mind drift onto dreamscapes

3. Waiting – a little more upbeat and contemporary for jones, definitely different than her first albums, but amazing in a new way

4. Back to Manhattan – i have a love affair with brooklyn, and it’s cameo in this song reminds me of its darling shops, eclectic population, and lush parks.

5. Cry, Cry, Cry – woohoo, this song is hard not to sing along to… i want to learn it on my guitar. It goes well with my little folky-country whimsies, like i walk the line.

Is School Still Safe?

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A few days ago my school was told by the police to go on lockdown due to a developing incident in the area. I was taking a chemistry exam, calculating the binding energy per nucleon of Carbon – 12, when we were told over the loudspeaker that we needed to follow lockdown procedures, and that this was NOT a drill. I crawled under by desk, hugging my knees and wondering what was going on. Thoughts of my school being bombed, or someone running through the halls with a loaded gun filled my mind. I remember my mom, a first grade teacher, telling me about how she was expected to pile her students in a corner, barricade them with a table, and stand before them, guarding them with her life. At what point, I thought, did being a teacher require you to risk your life in front of violent criminals? I don’t remember that being in the job description.

Later that night, I was retelling the story to my parents, adding how we eventually were told that everything was fine, and we resumed our chemistry test, when they told me that things like that never happened when they were in school. That before Columbine, schools didn’t even have lockdown drills. Now this shocked me, because earlier I had imagined my heroes, Laura and Mary Ingalls, going through a “lockdown drill” of their own at the schoolhouse because some wild cowboys were dueling through town and shooting bullets throughout the classroom windows. I guess not. I guess school used to be a safe place, and it saddens me that we’ve lost that.

Today I found out that a student brought a loaded gun to a middle school just down the road from my own school, a school where a few of my friends go. What he was planning to do with it, the police do not know, but we can all guess. Things like this happening in my direct community really drives this issue home.

I’m currently reading I Am Malala, by Malala Yousufzai (congrats on the Nobel Prize), which illustrates the whole other level of violence that comes with education in the Middle East. I am grateful for the uninhibited education I am able to receive, but there are always things to be done, improved, changed.

What are your ideas to improve education on the U.S.? The world?

Arachne

Spiders have been popping into my life lately. Whether its a few itchy bites on my ankle after a night’s sleep, or my yelping as I almost stepped on an enormous one on the kitchen floor in the middle of the night.

This gorgeous garden spider was perfectly posed for a photo shoot outside my bathroom window. IMG_0737

I have always had a deep respect for spiders, and have never killed one I found in my home (only tentatively captured it with a glass a piece of paper). They have distinct personalities, and are very powerful/magical in my eyes. Also, unlike mosquitoes which I willingly squish, spiders do the great service of keeping pests under control.

Reading up a little on my mythology this morning, I refreshed myself on the story of Arachne and Athena. Read more here: http://www.greek-gods.info/greek-gods/athena/stories/athena-arachne/. Besides the lesson I take out of this story about humility, I believe I have a strong connection with spiders because I am very into the “feminine arts.” (I use quotation marks around that phrase because it is the best way I can think to describe all the crafts including and related to sewing and weaving. In no way do I feel that these tasks should be forced upon or restricted to women.)

I was taught by my great-grandmother, and many other amazing women in my life, to sew at a young age. I’ve enjoyed it from the very start, and soon added crochet, embroidery, and a little knitting to my repertoire. Sadly, I haven’t been able to indulge in any of these luxuries lately because I am so busy! Hopefully the tangle of tasks I am involved in will calm down at the end of this month as I expect they will. This leaves me with one last thought that I so desperately need to put on a t-shirt or a tote bag for myself…

Courtesy of Pinterest! Not my work.
Courtesy of Pinterest! Not my work.

Girl, Interrupted

I love a good movie poster
I love a good movie poster

Yesterday, I watched Girl, Interrupted for the first time. I absolutely loved it, and shed a fews tears throughout the film (mostly at Whoopi Goldberg’s touching character). I should emphasize however, that I do cry at the drop of a hat so that isn’t saying much. Personally, I love crying at good movies, at both the happy and sad moments. That’s usually how I can tell if it was any good or not. 74d68faedd5cbae69093efacfcbf7e7cAnyway, I am going to be recommending Girl, Interrupted to all my friends viciously. As a teenage girl, I could really relate to the struggle through emotional times and was inspired by the demonstration of taking control of your own future. Plus Winona Ryder is just amazing, and speaking of movies that make me bawl Little Women is what made me fall in love with her. Oh and one last thing… There’s a book!!! Yeah, Girl, Interrupted was based on the novel of the same name by Susana Kaysen. It’s a memoir of her times in a mental hospital. The only reason I broke my rule and watched the movie before reading the book was because I didn’t realize there was one! Definitely my next read. So, go grab a few girlfriends and throw Girl, Interrupted on. And if you have a lot of discomfort during hypodermic needle scenes like me, just close your eyes!