Blow at Life

Contrary to its name, the blog Blow at Life is pretty awesome at life and is quickly becoming a huge source of artistic inspiration for me. I love every single post/piece or work I see, because each one is unique and intriguing due to the use of intense colors and line detail.

I know I just had a recent post about Irina Vinnik, but this post is slightly different. I love Vinnik’s works for being intricate, as if I were to analyze a complex puzzle, but artist Lawrence Yang of Blow at Life is able to inspire me with his watercolor and ink drawings like I’m watching a Pixar movie on a canvas.

Check out my favorites:

Big Doodle 2

051111 Experiment
Sleep with the Fishes

Sunset MeetingSun and MoonSnailPigsTwo BearsPlane Doodle

Cataclysm

Heart of DarknessBaitMechanical HeartFish CatcherCosmosI love the little white cartoon characters Yang uses. They remind me of the cute forest creatures in Princess Mononoke. Especially in this piece:

Peak

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Tattoo?

No, I don’t think I’d ever want to permanently mark my skin.

Yes, I’ve thought about it…but I don’t think I could ever really commit to one single thing to remain indelible on my own body. It just seems so extreme. Cool, but extreme.

Nonetheless, I appreciate the artistry of tattoos, and I’m obsessed with shows such as Miami Ink or LA ink. It amazes me, the level of detail and realism a tattoo can attain – isn’t it difficult handling that kind of medium, vibrating and injecting into the skin? Either way, tattoo art intrigues me, but never enough to really compel me to get one myself (Just for looks right?).

And then I came across Amanda Wachob‘s abstract watercolor-esque tattoos:

Amazing. Artistic. Awesome. Emphasis on Awe.

 

Cyclist

Yesterday, after much humming and hawing, I purchased a bike. It’s a lovely cream-colored Linus Dutchi 3-speed, perfect for traipsing about the city. I was deciding between the Linus and the Public J Bike (which I believe has been replaced by the C bike), but ended up with the Linus because they began offering a new “Small” size that was ultimately a better fit for my height.  Now I’m looking forward to leaving my car parked and enjoying the summer and fall days on my bike!

(via the Sartorialist)

(via Garance Dore – and yes, although I didn’t realize it before, that is in fact my bike!!)

~Cathay

Small but Cool

During my first 2 years in San Francisco, I lived in an adorable studio on the west side of Russian Hill (steps away from the Crooked Street and the Hyde Street cable car).  I had hardwood floors, an enormous walk-in closet (that I had at one point debated converting into an office or guest space), picturesque built-ins, and white arched entries.  It was very affordable (at least by San Francisco standards) and in a lovely neighborhood – from my building’s rooftop, I could enjoy a beer while taking in unobstructed views of the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz.  My friends called it the Sex and the City apartment, because it looked very similar to Carrie Bradshaw’s brownstone digs.

So I was delighted to discover Apartment Therapy’s annual tradition of holding a “Small/Cool” competition – a celebration of the tiny studios, 1-BRs, and junior 1-BRs that we’ve probably all lived in at one point or another.  My old apartment falls into the Tiny category (just 50 square feet too big to qualify for as a Teeny-Tiny).

When the apartment is small, you have to get creative with storage and thinking vertically is almost always the way to go.  I love what this SF couple has done with their kitchen.  The metal shelving reflects light, enhancing brightness, and stores A LOT! (Erin & Danny, San Francisco CA, 500 square feet)

Every space counts – I love the idea of turning a hallway closet into a workspace.  Removing the doors and replacing them with curtains takes away the “closet” feel, too.  (Liz, Chicago IL, 360 square feet)

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Minimalism comes in small packages.

Do you have something you collect?

Something that you are drawn to when you go shopping?

Maybe you love pink nail polishes…even though you have 10 already. Or maybe you can’t get enough of little black dresses (really, do you need 6?).

Well, to me, there’s nothing better than going to staples or office max and staring at the rows and rows of pens, pencils, and markers. I love looking at the different colored gel pens and packs of assorted stationary and testing them on little scraps of paper, feeling how smooth they write and how the color comes out.

I don’t know why, but I find writing to be incredibly soothing. Somehow, I find great satisfaction in buying a new pen and feeling it glide on crisp white paper, leaving behind a clean line of ink. I love filling pages with writing with a nice ball point pen, like those squishy bic pens you can buy in bulk packs, or tracing drawings with those fancy fine point pens that always seem to leak through paper. Every pen is unique and can provide a different sort of artistic outlet.

So, it’s not surprising that even my love for all things related to stationary has been affected by an obsession with minimalism. I’m totally obsessed with these slightly futuristic, elegant looking pens and pencils, sheathed in crystal clear exteriors.

Muji Polycarbonate Ball Point Pen 

Muji Polycarbonate Mechanical Pencil

 Pilot Prismee Ballpoint Pens

   

Hi-Tec C 5 Color Pens


 

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