This past Saturday we found ourselves people watching at a bar in Bangkok when this video came on. Just had to share it’s radness with you! Our trip to Banaue Philippines remain to be one of our most favorite visit. The rice terraces of Banaue is dubbed the eighth wonder of the world, yet it still doesn’t bring in as much tourism as other parts of Southeast Asia. Spending some time in Thailand, I was happy to see amount of tourism they bring in, and amazed to see how well it helps their economy. I realized that there are far more tourists walking this street of bars, than there is to trek the mountain regions of Banaue. I always wished for more tourism in the Philippines to help fuel their economy, but I also love the fact that the lack there of in certain spots allow it to have the sense of being “untouched”, less western influence and a more rooted connection with their past. Spend a few days here and you are overcome with surrealism. Aside from the western clothing which started in the 80’s and the trails created for jeepneys to carve around the mountainsides, you realize not much have changed over the past thousands of years.
This time last year I was working full-time for a cool little design shop in Austin. The environment was laid back, the work itself was fun, and I couldn’t have asked for a better boss or co-workers. I understood how fortunate I was compared to most people having a job that I absolutely didn’t hate, but still, I had an over-consuming feeling like there was something else I should be doing. I found myself waking up every morning looking forward to the weekend, and time after time I realized that the week had flown by…then a new month…and then a whole year had passed. I couldn’t believe how fast time was moving and how many days I spent wishing I were somewhere else.
The greatest perk of being a designer is being able to work with headphones on and listen to music throughout the day. When I needed a break from music I would listen to lectures from Alan Watts and others to get my brain stimulated with things other than design. I came across this short video montage that uses an audio snippet from one of Watts’ famous lectures and it really struck a chord. It made me ask those questions and reach deep within to understand the simple truth that I could do anything and go anywhere I wanted. I shouldn’t be living 5 days out of the week with this feeling like I was wasting my time chasing money. Although I enjoyed my job, I knew I was only in it for the money just like 99% of the people in this world that work. I knew that I still wanted to design, but the thought of being tied down to one place was root of my discontent. I wanted the freedom to pick up and go if I wanted to or to extend my stay longer if I loved the place. This video along with a few other influences led me to talking with Charmie into taking the big leap — stop chasing the dollar and start living as we truly wanted to. We may not have as much money now as we did when we both had full-time jobs, but we’re content and happy. Somehow small projects keep coming in here and there and they’re keeping us afloat. It makes me think of something Tina Roth Eisenberg said at her SXSW keynote speech, “When things keep falling into place, that’s the universe telling you to keep going.” We’re now somewhat living the way the majority of the world does. Living day to day not knowing where the next dollar is coming from. It’s such a thrilling experience and right now I wouldn’t want it any other way.
All Roads Design consists of artisan duo Robert Dougherty and Janelle Pietrzak. Janelle first met Robert when she apprenticed for him at a motorcycle repair shop. It was only natural that their projects outside of the garage would be the best of both worlds. Robert was a jack of all trades, from welding to carpentry, and Janelle was well seasoned in fabric sourcing for the apparel industry including retailers such as Anthropology. Today their work is curated by numerous specialty stores that see the uniqueness and beauty in all of their dream weavings. I’m specially gravitated towards the mix of texture and the abstract patterns in each design. Their designs epitomize everything I love about artisan pieces; artist expressions translated by their hands.
Wherever we might wander off to, we will always call United States our home. These American flags reincarnated by Sarah Rahbar are beautiful, thought provoking, and to some controversial. Sarah is an Iranian-American artist who lives and works in New York.
“The first body of work that created international recognition for the artist was the flag series (2005-2013), in which traditional fabrics and objects are reworked as collages that form various incarnations of the American and Iranian flag, exploring ideas of national belonging, as well as the conflicting role of flags as symbols of ideological and nationalistic violence. “
The bright and beautiful natives of Brazil. In 2007 the National Indian Foundation or FUNAI (a Brazilian governmental protection agency for Indian interests and their culture) reported that it had confirmed the presence of 67 different un-contacted tribes in Brazil. Brazil has now the largest number of un-contacted peoples. Though it’s a daily struggle to keep their land and rights, their isolation aids in cultural survival as they continue to defend their customs, language, beliefs, and ways of expression.
I’ve always been fascinated by pictures from the past. These color photos from Russian photographer/chemist Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii are simply incredible. Between 1909 and 1915, Prokudin-Gorskii traveled across his home country, using a relatively new technology of color photography to document what he saw along his journey. Outfitting a private train car with his own dark room equipment, Prokudin-Gorskii captured landscapes, buildings, and people in a series of breathtaking images. Without sepia tones’ time-distancing effects, the characters in these images feel right there, full of stories of a bygone era and a diverse, colorful culture on the brink of revolution.
View the entire collection of high res photographs here.
Just came across the absolutely incredible work from Brazilian photographer and photojournalist Sebastiao Salgado. The majority of his photographs leave me wondering how he got to such bizarre locations he did in order to produce such beautifully apocalyptic images. I even start to question if they’re real or if they’ve been digitally created or altered. But indeed they are real film shots. His work is such an inspiration to seek out these far corners of this world that very few have captured the way he has.
Bunnies for sale, and I even saw baby chicks whose hair was died in colors of the rainbow for sale!
A smell you will have to get used to, but their quite good! Especially when dipped in vinegar.
My knock off Ray Bans from Quiapo!
A very busy busy market in manila, but lucky for us it’s just 2 train stops away from us. I’m quite a digger, so this was my paradise. An open market filled with everything from dried fish, to wholesale beads to knock off Louis Vuittons and Ray Bans! We came on the hunt for new lenses for our Canon. We heard Hidalgo street in Quiapo was known for their rock bottom prices. That some people even fly into the Philippines to score camera equipment on the cheap. It’s the Philippines, so if you’re used to spending U.S. dollars- everything is cheap here. Hidalgo was filled with new and used camera shops, but for the lens we were looking for, it still about the same as the prices we saw online. So in short, I only walked away with a pair of knock of Ray-bans. Don’t judge me, they were only 50P, about 1$!
What to expect:
Very busy market, especially on the weekends. Hang tight to your purse, or better yet don’t bring one at all. Try your best to blend in, and walk fast. I’ve heard too many “snatch” stories about Quiapo. Like most markets you can haggle for a lower price. I usually don’t when I feel it’s fair, it’s hard for them to make a living. A few pesos will mean more to them than it does to me saving a buck or two. You can take a jeepney (usually bet 8-10 pesos) just look for one with Quiapo painted on the side of their jeep. You can also take a bus or LRT and stop at Carriedo station. LRT will cost you about 12-15 pesos. Also, step inside the beautiful Quiapo Catholic church. Locals say Manny Pacquiao attends church here.