Sudden Hope

Rusche Handmade at DNA Galleries in OKC

Rusche Handmade “Art-Themed” Necklaces at DNA Galleries in OKC

I feel so lucky to be featured in such an array of great stores and so it was completely disheartening to hear about the disasters in Oklahoma recently where DNA Galleries is housed. I sent along this new batch of necklaces (see below!) for DNA Galleries where proceeds would go directly to the victims in need. Different text and altered book pages feature words like “healing”… “together”… and Oklahoma-themed neighborhoods. Pictured below are the Disaster Relief pieces in their shop, ready to be of help and excited to go to new homes! Give DNA Galleries a ring to place an order for one and help support the healing and renewal to come in OK.

Rusche Handmade Necklaces Created for Disaster Relief in Oklahoma

Rusche Handmade Necklaces Created for Disaster Relief in Oklahoma


Far Flying


Lots of new goodies in the shop. Check out my etsy shop here for more work!



We’ve got ourselves our very own gallery & art shop. Come on by.

We have some exciting news too– WE’VE OPENED UP A PERMANENT ART GALLERY SHOP in Chicago’s Ukrainian Village called Paperish Mess! Please stay updated with us at and be in the know for future art exhibits, handmade goods, film screenings, craft groups and more! We’re so psyched to bringing this to our neighborhood and we hope that you’ll want to be a part of it with us too.

If you are an artist (or have an artist friend!) then please do get in touch–  feel free to shoot us an email at with a brief artist bio/description of your artwork or handmade items, a link to your website (if you have one) and/or a selection of JPEG images.

Thank you so much!!  We’ll be in touch soon!


Bee (kind of paperish) and Sean (kind of messy!)

paperish mess pop-up art shop!

Please join me and Sean for our newest venture –the Paperish Mess Pop Up Art Shop– on Sept 29th & 30th (11-8pm each day!) during Chicago’s Design Harvest Festival.

The event will feature a culinary themed pop-up shop showcasing the work of local and independent artists creating original artwork and handmade goods!

The pop-up shop will take place in Martyn George (1855 W. Grand Ave at Wolcott)– Chicago’s newest vintage shop featuring culinary-related goods!! There will be wine and lots of other goodies (vintage & handmade!) to feast your eyes upon!

A R T I S A N S include:

Digit Design Ceramicware
Garden BonBons
Chance Bone Book Clocks
Chel Domestic Goods
Cassie Tompkins/ Regional Food Zine
Rebecca Plotnick Photography
Bunny Pumpkin
Belle Botanica
Professor Octocle
Zoeybean Designs

and lots more!

If you are interested, please feel free to email us or check out our website for more information about Paperish Mess and what we aim to do within this fine Windy City! Check out more details below. We are still accepting culinary-themed artwork submissions via email as well!

Date/Time: Sept 29th & 30th (11-8pm each day)-  During West Town’s Design Harvest Festival


Martyn George
1855 W. Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60622

Public Transportation Accessible via #50 Damen, #65 Grand, and #9 Ashland busses. Closest Subway Lines include Chicago (Blue), Grand (Blue), Ashland-Lake (Green/Pink)

Email us:


Reconnecting With Luck

I love connecting to an artist’s work. Even more so though, I love reconnecting to an artist’s work.  It’s like hearing a song on the radio that you love so much every time it comes on, but the radio host never says who sings it or what the title is, so you just hope that you’ll come across it again. And when you hear it again- artist, title and all- you can’t wait to hear the rest of their album… because you know you are going to love it.

Jennifer Cronin is an artist based in Chicago, IL.  Recently I stopped into Black Cloud Gallery in Pilsen with my sister and was nearly breathtaken by her paintings (which included the one above).  Her work pulled me in and I became mesmerized by her conceptual vision that culminated in a creation of both visual and mental stimulation.  I didn’t know if I knew who the artist was, but the artwork felt familiar and I vaguely recalled the name.  I decided to find out more about her work and to my delight, a reconnection had been made.

Somehow, somewhere I had come across her work last year. I remember it… I remember the piece above specifically.  The first time I saw it, it brought up all of the irrational fears I’ve had since childhood of creepy crawlers coming up out of drains and plumbing and just being anywhere near me (except for that one week of camping in college… how I wish I could get back to that state of mind).

The irrational fears came back again when I saw the painting this time too, but then I looked at the title: “Lucky to Have Eachother” …. I suddenly came to realize the relief that this particular couple could potentially feel after this battle is won.  They could slump down on the couch and collapse into eachother’s arms with sighs of comfort, knowing that they earned their victory.

I’ve been feeling this a lot lately with my other half and it’s been a great experience- one of learning and of having eachother’s backs. It’s a good feeling. One that took us nearly 8 years to get to, but now we too get to slump down into eachother’s arms, with sighs of comfort because of our own earned victory.

Check out more of Jennifer Cronin’s work below and at her website too:

Thanks so much for stopping by.  I’ll be posting more again soon.  I’ve missed it.



sometimes you just have to breathe. other times you have to keep a big pillow on hand to scream into.

ugh. you know those mornings where you wake up expecting to see a specific time on the alarm clock and it’s 45 minutes after that expected time…  and then you get ready and finally the leave house, only to realize that you left something at home so you have to go back and get it.  and then you leave again.  and then things fall out of your bag while you are riding your bike- on two different occassions.  and then you get to work and you just want to fall back asleep.  because leaving this reality would be so much better than anything else that might be in store for you that day.

my roommate, aaron has been practicing meditation a lot lately and he did a mini instruction on breathing yesterday with me.  i think it’s perfect timing because that’s exactly what i need… especially since i don’t have a pillow on hand.

Check out this work by Clare Elsaesser…. i have a feeling she understands.

*Update!* (ahem, to be said like in Unsolved Mysteries)

Since now owning a new art gallery shop, Paperish Mess, in Chicago– we’ve had the greatest opportunity to feature Clare’s artwork here at the space. Come on by and see her items in person and don’t forget to find us on facebook for new finds and observations every day.  Thanks so much.  🙂  Hope to see you ’round again soon.


These are so friggen cute.

These are so friggen cute. It makes me want to play with paper dolls again.  The artist’s work is just adorable.

Visit hollandsworth etsy shop: … welp, it’s playtime now, so I’m off.

-Bee :]

Adventures in Surreality

I’ve been getting the itch to travel recently.  This feeling comes and goes every few years.  It happened when I was in college- senior year- the Internship Abroad program in Ireland I applied to got canceled all together, so I graduated instead.  I was supposed to travel around the US for a good 9 months in 2010, but then I got to Chicago and fell in love with the city.  I didn’t lead a bike tour around the east coast for 2 weeks because of random issues, and the ideas of WWOOFing/volunteering abroad or anything of that sort always seem to fade as the possibilities of saving money dwindle away.

There’s ways to make it happen- I know this.  There’s ways to travel and get away, ways to take a breather and just experience something…. different, for a little bit.  Iceland has always been at the top of my list…  now Brazil and Portugal are catching up fast too. Belgium has always intrigued me.  And definitely Holland.

So, I’ve got this list.  I guess now I’ve just got to start crossing things off.

I came across Erik Johansson’s work a little while ago, but at the time had no idea who the artist was or where to find more of it.  By happenstance, I clicked on his website and was so excited to find his artwork again.

I think most of us realize the difference between animation and reality pretty early on in life.  This artist seamlessly melds the two together. His work reminds me of a [sur]realistic portrayal of children’s book stories and what those stories translated to in our heads growing up.  It leaves you contemplating if this (giant fishhead island) could actually exist somewhere.  Imagine the possibilities…. the beauty that it would bring to the world we live in.  As complex and unusual as this sight would be, I have a feeling that it would actually make the world (or maybe just life in general) much more simplistic.  and of course sureally enjoyable.

But really though, who’s to say that this giant fishhead island doesn’t exist somewhere?  …maybe it’s just yet to be found. ;]

I guess exploring calls.  Check out more of Erik Johansson’s work below:

Don’t forget to check out the artist’s blog too! Thanks for visiting!!  🙂



if there was a club for both luck and joy, i’d join.

I haven’t had the best of luck in life.  I haven’t had the worst either.  In fact, most days (especially lately) I feel blessed.  Literally blessed.  So, why then right now (and right yesterday), do I feel so crappy? Why is there so much junk muddled up in my head and why don’t I want to do anything to help myself get out of this pit?  I have to keep reminding myself that God will take me out of this pit and make my steps secure.  But it’s so easy to just wallow.  and want to wallow.  wallow until you don’t feel like wallowing anymore.

Sometimes there’s just no artwork for how you feel.  sometimes it’s just blank. white.  unknown.

throws arms up in the air and says “meh!”  … for right now at least. Maybe tomorrow I’ll feel lucky.   Check out Craig Barker’s artwork here.  He’s got a beautiful style filled with color and imagery that makes you mentally jump into the painting- or at least relate to it in a seratonin-based way.  🙂

He’s got a blog too.

-Bee 🙂

A Storybook of Dreams

I have this reccurring nightmare that I’m back in school. Usually high school (sometimes middle school) and I can’t figure out how to get to my classes… I can never remember what room they are in, so I just end up not going.  Then at the end of the year I get my grades and I realize that I’ve been failing all of these courses that I haven’t attended.   For good reason of course… in my dream I’ve missed every test, paper, homework assignment and participation grade I could possibly get.

In last night’s dream I found myself staring at my report card, blacking out with a sharpie all of the courses that I could possibly pawn off as “…I didn’t realize that I was registered for that course and therefore that’s why I never went.” It was stressful.

I finally woke up, like I do after every one of these dreams, re-realizing and reassuring myself that I indeed already passed middle school, already passed high school and did indeed graduate college. I tell myself, “I don’t have to worry about math class anymore- I don’t need to do homework. I’m fine. It’s ok.”

There’s a Chicago artist that features his artwork at Paperish Mess and his work just blows me away.  His pieces are all original silkscreens.  The artist, Shawn Stucky, is red/green colorblind and so he has learned to rely more on value than on color.  He mixes certain colors to experiment with them and find the right one for what his mind is imagining- his color palettes are gorgeous.  He finds inspiration in music and in dreams.  Unlike my dreams (which can be dark and stress inducing sometimes), his are inspiring and filled with beauty.  He uses his own lucid dreams and what he calls “silent film animations” to create a brand new world where the boundaries are limitless.  The artist has described this process of inspiration as “quietly lurking in that mysterious space between waking-life and dreams, hiding in plain sight. As I fall asleep, I sometimes have what I call ‘silent film animations’. These silent films play in a stop-motion fashion behind my eyelids. I see them vividly. The imagery ranges from children playing on swing sets to odd looking elderly men spinning chairs above their heads. Once I became aware of these films I began to consciously collect the imagery in my mind to later reproduce in my art.”

My boyfriend, Sean (note the different spelling) and I have started a little collection of his works in our apartment. When Sean looks at artwork he relates it to music.  There’s an artist that reminds him of the band Caribou, for example.  When Sean looks at these silkscreens, he hears the music of Sigur Ros.  Which I love because not only does Sigur Ros hold a special place in my heart, but the artist actually bases some of his artwork off of their music as well.  Through talking with the artist, I learned that Sigur Ros actually has 10 of his prints in their studio.  For me, it can’t get better than this… beautiful original silkscreens, lucid dreams and the music of Sigur Ros.

Perfect- simply perfect.  Check out some more of Shawn Stucky’s artwork below.

You can check out more of Shawn Stucky’s work at his website  and at Paperish Mess in Chicago too. Thank you so much for visiting!

-Bee :]