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 :]

A Little Somethin’ Somethin’

It’s spring cleaning time, and with that comes spring decorating and spring renewal-of-things-we-need (well, want)!  I love that kind of renewal- a fresh start.  It makes everything feel great again.  Cheers to spring renewal!  Here’s a little collection of some favorite things.  ;]  Click here for the rest!


Spring is here!

-Bee :]

Choose to buy art, not people.



It’s been a few years now that I’ve been aware of the issue of human trafficking and forced labor.  It wasn’t until recently though that I’ve realized that there is something I can do to help prevent it. The fact is that there are more slaves today than ever before in history- there are at least 30 million people enslaved today. There are people enslaved worldwide and that includes in the US, in your hometown, in our major cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, NYC, Miami, Seattle… the list goes on. It’s happening everywhere. The problem is that it is so hidden from the public view. It’s tucked away behind closed doors, in basements or attics. It’s silenced by threats, beatings and false hope. Human trafficking is a horrifying act that we need to raise awareness about and help to prevent.

The following film is visually striking, but so very sobering.  It highlights the plight of human trafficking and modern-day slavery and features beautiful music by Bethany Cosentino of Best Coast.  Please take a look!  

through all of the imperfections

i’m so in love with charmaine olivia’s artwork.  it has such a feeling of lightness to it. it’s sublimely refreshing in that “everything-will-be-okay” sense.  i feel like there’s a bit of mystery involved in her work too. it makes me wonder: what’s the story with these gals?  i want to know what they’re all about.  it seems like all of these ladies are very much comfortable with themselves… comfortable in their own skin. it doesn’t matter if they have their imperfections or if life has its imperfections, they’re doing alright.  that’s so inspiring to me, knowing that through all of the imperfections, we can still live life and still be fine and still feel “light.”


Check out her website for more and her blog too!

Thank you so, so much for stopping by!  It’s been really fantastic to have you. Come back for more soon. ;]


I Want To Go To There

Kirsty Mitchell’s photography is what got me started on my renewed-love-for-photography kick.  When I first came across her work, my heart melted at the beauty of it.  The scenes she creates turn an ordinary day into a magical fairytale.  Each photograph makes me want to be in that fantastical reality.  I can just imagine walking around in a world like that… oh how wonderful it would be.  I love artwork like this, artwork that just takes you away.  Artwork that sweeps you off into a new… strangely familiar, but incredibly different place.  These photographs are from her “Wonderland” series. Gorgeous.

Take a look at her website for more photos from “Wonderland” and her other series.

Spring Spring Spring is coming!!

Bee ;]