Monday Inspirations - Color

IMAGE CREDIT

I've mentioned before that my career as a designer is the kind of field where you work 100% of the time. There's no such thing as a day off or a time off even. I often get asked by friends what is the process that I take when I get started and/or where all the ideas come from. My response is almost similar to what all other creatives everywhere: Inspirations comes from EVERYTHING!!!

I'd like to share with you a little trick I use to come up with color palettes...

Look at some images you just absolutely love, even if you can't quite understand why and start extracting the colors from it. For example, the image above is a print I came across and LOVED! Not only are the images young and playful, but the color palette is just as "cool and fresh" as the images.

I do this technique pretty much for all things that capture my eye.... here's another....


From this image, I captured (with photoshop dropper) the very faint but lovely pinks and taupe colors of the image.

Next step: Creating a fun project with the colors!

Read next Monday's post about what to do once you find that color inspiration!

Where do you grab your inspiration from?

xx-LA

Let's Talk....Fashion


There I was wearing a skirt and a simple top with a statement necklace and I got many compliments and a few "who are you bearing legs for?" comments. It dawned on me that when you work in an office environment, a skirt or dress are usually considered "dressed up" attire though I know many of us wear them often out of the office.

One lady even stopped me on the hallway and said, "are you dating someone, or who are you dressing for?

Who am I dressing for? My self!

So I got to thinking, when you choose your attire in the mornings, who do you dress for?
Is it your boss? Your co-workers? Your boyfriend/husband? Strangers? Your self?

I gave this some serious thought and here is where my priorities lie:

I dress for:

1. WORK - let's be honest, some of the work-rules are a bit out-dated (no jeans, no open toe shoes, no t-shirts, no denim) Alas, I have to follow rules so none of these make it out of my closet on a M-F basis.

2. My Boss - This is the person I have to impress on a daily basis. I want to come across as professional and put together.

3. My Client - As a free-lancer, I meet clients on a daily basis and many times unscheduled meetings pop-up, so it is important that I look like I can coordinate an outfit, hence I can coordinate their marketing needs.

4. My Self- Sad truth, but honest. Now, this doesn't mean that when you see me I look far from what I would if I could have 100% true choice of attire. I do manage to incorporate things that are important to me on a daily basis. I will post soon about how I bend the rules a bit ;)


So, who do you dress for? Do you keep your husband/partner in mind?
Share!

xx-LA

Monday Inspirations - Failure works for me.


I clearly remember being and high school and our guidance counselor would advice "Find a job you will love, because you will be doing it the rest of your life." and it was something that I took to heart and hence knew my job would be found in the arts--making me a graphic designer.

Sharon Montrose certainly played by those rules and became an animal photographer merging her two loves into a successful and profitable career that allows her creativity to soar. I cannot wait to someday decorate a nursery with her collection of baby animal pictures. You can buy these HERE.


To learn more about Sharon click HERE to a wonderful interview by The Every Girl

And I don't know if you guys feel inspired, but I'm gonna go get me a baby llama to photograph!


Oh, and THANK YOU so much for your support on last week's post! I promise to get back into the swing of bloggin' See y'all soon!

xx-Luce

Anxiety, Blues, Cancer? ABC's of Life.


I'm slowly coming back from a few weeks' hiatus and my absence can be thank to my newish friend "Anxiety Girl". It all started soon after Valentine's Day...

Prior to last fall, I had never experienced anxiety. Or at least I don't think I ever felt overwhelmed to the point where my heart would beat rapidly and I would be short of breath. Never. I've always thought of myself as a very passive, "cool, calm & collected" kinda' gal so anxiety was the furthest thing from my mind when my heart would go off the charts. My dad, however, passed away from a heart attack. Very quick. Very unexpected and I was only 11. So the heart situation had me worried thinking that perhaps I had inherited some sort of heart disease but at this point that cannot be denied nor confirmed.

Anxiety crept in slowly these past few months and it manifested itself differently this time, it would start with a simple thing "did I turn off the flat iron?, taxes are coming up, did I sent out the invoices? Did they pay me? Did I deposit? Did I turn off the flat iron?" It was just a series of questions and doubts that would not end. I tossed and turned at night, which sent rushes of thoughts through my brain while I tried sleeping. Dumb silly questions that became worse with the passing of days...

One morning about 9 weeks ago, I woke up with an odd pain on my left breast (yes, we're getting personal here) and the pain would be strong as if a thunderstorm with lightning would rush from one and to the other, over and under, fast and persistent. Then it would go away. completely. Which left me wondering...did that really happen? This happened on and off for about 3 days. The pain was so unbearable that wearing a bra, anything other than cotton and sleeping on my left side were just excruciating. My first thought was: Cancer! Of course that would be my first thought given my anxiety and mentality at the time. So I did the next best thing: Self examined and checked for bumps, lumps, texture and any other oddity that can be found on pamphlets I HAD DESIGNED a few months ago for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Ha! The irony, I designed these things and here I was, following the instructions. (Life is funny that way) Anyway, none of the other symptoms were there so I concluded that it was probably hormonal (since my app said I was ovulating).

The pain subsided and I went back to normal, or rather "normal" with my mind becoming preoccupied with my other 1,001 thoughts of flea season, bills, the lack of exercise, doing a detox, expenses..etc. etc. Then almost a month later, on a Monday afternoon, I was minding my own business at Hobby Lobby buying some tropical plants for a room I was decorating (pictures to come soon) and BAM! There it was again, the storm of pain across my breast, stronger than before making me lean on the cart and my eyes watered immediately. I stood as still as I could and held my breath.

THIS. WAS. HAPPENING.

I froze, started sweating and could swear I was going to faint. But I didn't. The pain subsided and I continued to walk down the isle and I pretended that nothing had happened. I was in a daze and walked out the store empty handed. Then I walked towards my car holding back tears which unraveled as soon as I sat in my car. And there I sat for about 20 minutes crying hysterically.

I had already made plans to travel 4 hours to San Antonio that Friday it was supposed to be my "relaxing weekend"  I stuck to my plain and promised myself that if no other pains happened before Friday, I would go. Thursday morning, I had began packing and the pain came. I called and made an appointment and left to San Antonio on Friday to what was anything but relaxing. I tried to keep my composure in front of my friends but I was slowly slipping into a depression.

The Blues.

My anxiety stepped aside to give way to my new friend "Mr. Blues" and he came in serenaded me with melodramatic music I swayed in sadness and tears. I was sure I had Cancer. 3 members of my church have it, I saw in the news how now women under 40 are more prone to breast cancer than ever before. I heard the word cancer at least once a day. EVERY. DAY.

In my depression, I would make mental lists of all the things I hadn't accomplished yet, the trips I still wanted to take. The family I didn't  get to have, and the items I needed to do to plan for the worse. Seriously.

I went to my doctor's appt. and she (super kind lady) took one look at me and she said, we need to get you on anti-anxiety meds. I agreed. She examined my breasts. Painful but necessary. And she said: "I feel some lumps but it's very common for women to have lumps that most often turn out to be benign, let's do a sonogram. We can do it here in the building, but it will be a GUY, or I can send you to the hospital and place a request for it to be with a girl". My heart was racing, my face was sweaty and my shirt was already wet with tears. The thought of going to a hospital was going to send me overboard so I agreed to have it done in that same clinic by a GUY. It was scheduled for a Monday a week exactly a week away from that day.

I left to San Antonio to distract myself and to decorate my friend's bedroom as a 30th birthday gift from me. Have I mentioned that NOBODY knew what was going on with me? NOT my mother, NOT one soul. I didn't want to share what was going on with me until a doctor had given me a diagnosis. This trip to San Antonio I managed to keep it together thanks to my friend traveling with me whom I kept it together for. I came back home on a Sunday just in time for my appt. the next day.

A Sonogram. Cancer?

I walked into the room and a tall guy around my age named "Juan" followed. As soon as he closed the door behind him, I joked "please lie to me and tell me that you're gay so it makes it a LITTLE less awkward" he smiled back and said "nope, sorry ma'am" he then explained what he was going to do, I had to remove my shirt, he would place a gel on my breasts and do a clock-ward motion with the sonogram wand recording any information he would come across. The whole thing was surreal and uncomfortable but he was nice and told me "awkward is when I have to do this to a relative or to my mother, THAT'S awkward" which I imagine true. He then told me about his career, what he does, how he takes pride in what he does and other trivial conversations which made the experience a tiny less horrible.

My follow up appt. was yet another week later (if you're keeping track, this is week 8 of insanity)
This week I spent moping, crying, hyperventilating and thinking the worse. The night before my appt., I had dinner with a friend to celebrate her birthday. Again, I pulled it together. Next day, when the doctor stepped in she immediately said "well the results came back and they're completely normal" I froze. What? Where are the lumps? Where is the biopsy? Where is my sanity? She concluded that it was most likely hormonal, prescribed a cream, told me to take Motrin.

That was it.


----Author's note----

If you feel betrayed like the story should have a more suspenseful ending, I agree. But let's be honest, this is the best possible way this story could have ended. I am forever thankful to my faith that helped me pull through with 1/3 of sanity left. I plan to now restore my mind and find peace that my body is healthy (for now) and I am thankful for that.

If you read all of this and continue to come back, I promise to stay true to what I share with you.

Honesty is, after all, the best policy.

Now, let's move forward. All of us :)

xx-LA


Monday Inspirations - Billionaire's Club, Tory Burch


This morning I woke up to an article on Forbes for this year's 'World's Richest Women of 2013' and was pleasantly surprised to see that Tory Burch has now joined this club! Why is this important, well because it has always been men who dominate this list.  Of the 1,426 people on the new 2013 list, just 138 are women which is 40 more than last year. That's fantastic! I cannot wait for the day when we stop noticing this huge gap between the amount that men earn vs women and it stops being a topic of discussion.

Let's see what Ms. Burch has done to get here:

1. She was born into money as her parents were Reva and Ira Earl "Bud" Robinson. Her mom  Steve McQueen and Marlon Brando. Her father, who was a wealthy investor dated Grace Kelly and Joan Bennett. Not too shabby!

2. She was first married to William Macklowe, son of a real-estate tycoon. Then later married Christopher Burch who was an investor in Internet Capital Group. She is now single and has been linked to dating Lance Armstrong amongst other high-profile people.

3. She started her fashion line in 2004 and it was immediately accepted by both high-profile women as Oprah as well as the average soccer mom for it's easy wear and contemporary look.

4. In 2008, she founded the Tory Burch Foundation which provides economic opportunities to women and their families.

I really look up to this lady because of her simplicity when she's interviewed, for her artistic capabilities, her keen eye for design and for being an awesome business woman who gives back to other women.

Congratulations Tory!




Monday Inspirations - Kid President

I'm pretty sure you've seen this one already but if you haven't, I can't think of anything more inspiring for today... Fulfill your potential!


Have a wonderful Monday!
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