Wednesday, April 27, 2011

"Civilizations are not remembered for their businessmen, lawyers, or bankers. They are remembered by the arts."
Eli Broad

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Blogs You Simply Must Follow or You're Silly.

I've come across some really wonderful blogs lately, and I thought I ought to make a selection and recommend some to you guys :) (Though I wish I could recommend everyone; if I'm following you it's because I think you have some serious moxie.) Really though, go follow them. And I'll tell you why you should!

1. StyleNymph

 First up we have my lovely, talented, and very sweet friend, Sarah: affectionately known on the web as the StyleNymph. She is a model, photographer, and blogger who's incredibly fashion-savvy and always recommends really chill music. I've seriously found some of my favourite songs on her blog from her "current jams"!

There are so many artful, inspiring shots (like this one from photographer Anna Harty) on her blog - go check it out!

BLOG: StyleNymph
Photo (c) Anna Harty

2. Kitchen Karate

I just discovered Jordan's blog, "Kitchen Karate", tonight through foodgawker, and instantly fell so in love that I had include him in my recommendations. I'm secretly a huge foodie. Almost all of my memories of trips I've taken have been surrounded by food. The reason I get myself out of bed is for coffee and breakfast. And I love to bake and entertain.

Jordan's blog features gorgeous food photography that'll have you laying in your own drool, awesome recipes (I'm trying the "Rabbit in the Hole" recipe tomorrow morning), and it is HILARIOUS. You're seriously missing out if you don't add Kitchen Karate to your blogroll.

Photo (c) Jordan D'Amico

3. Love at First Blush

This blog is such a source of inspiration for me. The designer, Sabrina Chin, creates amazing works of wearable art from leather (which is a medium in which I'm totally incompetent). I could seriously go on and on about how much I love her stuff, and am planning to buy her very-popular Black Feather Necklace as a birthday gift to myself this summer.

If that's not enough reason, here's another: amazing photography. Sabrina expertly pairs her products in with well-known labels, resulting in absolute loveliness.

Photo (c) Sabrina Chin

I'm definitely going to be featuring some more blogs soon! Perhaps next week :) There are so many talented people out there who deserve more attention! Now go follow StyleNymph, KitchenKarate, and Love at First Blush! And have a lovely night :)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Summer, School, and More Snogging.

Life is going well, my friends. Sorry I've been absent on the blog this past week... long long hours at work and just being insanely busy. But this week is double-dark (meaning, we have 2 days of no shows) at Cirque, so I've finally got a bit of a breather. Which is good, considering that I found out I got into SCAD'S Illustration MFA program for this fall, and I literally have not had time to even start looking over the materials. Where the heck are my priorities?! (They were totally on the Easter Egg Hunt and Egg-Dying this morning with my 10 year old sister)

It's supposed to be feeling more like spring and summer this week, with hot weather and thunderstorms (my favourite!), so I figured tonight would be a good time to bust out my Summer To Do List:

What are your summer ToDo's?

My list has several numbers that are quite large umbrellas, so let's just add more margaritas, wearing more dresses, creating new jewelry, exploring different avenues with my illustration, buying new clothes, taking life less seriously, and drinking a lot more lemonade.

Also, a follow up to my previous post: (because I am pretty sure my life is just one big self-fulfilling prophecy.) As per my completely un-serious words about the future of snogging in my personal life, voila! Some snogging happened, with quite a fine chap. I couldn't just write up a whole big "making out post" (as my friend called it), and not follow up to it! Happy snogging, fellow bloggers!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Incredible Image, "Armour" by one of my favourite artists, Homentashen.
Her works are always a feast for the eyes. Here's her blog.

Here's to the art of snogging, 
and to hopefully some good ones in the near future
because - let's face it - it's just plain fun.

I had my first kiss when I was 15, it was by a bathroom and he pulled away. HAHAHA. The pinnacle of awkward adolescence. Nothing like the stuff Taylor Swift sings about. Do you kiss and tell? (I can, now that I'm nearly 25 and have had enough therapy to get over my first lip-wrestling experience, err- fiasco!)

Typography by me. Font is courtesy of; font, "exotica".

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Transport Me to the Beach Please

Been reading up on a lot of fashion and accessory blogs lately, especially with the coming of my favourite season of all - summertime! I'm usually stuck inside, working like a dog all summer, which usually results in pasty white skin (ugh) - but this one will be different! I have quite a few (appropriately-themed) goals for this summer. But first, I've been gathering up lots of summertime inspiration in the form of colours and clay jewelry.

Lemonade, sunshine, and bright aqua-marine coastal tidal pools seem to be the theme for the summer's colours. 

(I've thrown in a more green-turquoise, a lovely cream, and a warm golden orange.)

All designs seen here can be found in My Etsy Shop
Ready to close my eyes and drift away with a sarong, bottle of suntan lotion, and a margarita... ahhh.

I'm still jotting down ideas for my Summer To-Do List, and I'll be sure to post it up once it's complete! Do you guys have any fun plans in the coming warm months? Any goals for this summer? :) Tell me about it!

I'm going to start by trying not to take life too seriously, and unwinding with this awesome bollywood-vibe track from Cirque du Soleil's "Totem". I suggest you give it a listen.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Whale in the Millpond & Realizing My Butt is Too Big

Being a big fish in a small pond has its advantages.

But what do you do when you realize your big old fishy butt is getting in your own way, making it impossible to stretch your fins and actually swim anywhere? 

 Dory, Marlin, and the whale (c) Disney/Pixar. Durr.

I feel like I've had a huge reality check lately. I've been spending less time in some places and more time in others. It's funny how the more you learn, the more you realize you still have to learn. One of the things I feel is appealing about being an artist is that it's a life-long journey with oneself, and it is a skill that you take with you wherever you go. Your skills can always get better; you can always learn something; there's always an other level to accomplish. But I also find that this can be incredibly intimidating to me.

Like I said, I've been making pretty decisive choices about where I've been spending my time lately. Not because I'm an elitist or a snob, but like I touched upon in this post, I feel an incredible sense of urgency in my life to stay focused and really make an effort to maximize the small amount of time I actually do have now that I'm working full time.
(On a complete side-note, I am waiting to hear some news, and then I will possibly be looking into a longer tour-contract with Cirque du Soleil.)

Since I have done that, I feel my millpond has exploded and opened up into a vast ocean, a place where all I'm familiar with are the shallows (baby pool imagery comes to mind), and huge creatures could eat me for lunch without a second thought. It's exhilarating in a way, and completely terrifying. 

We all love to hear our own voices. We all want to believe we are skilled at something, and can share that with others. But for me personally, I feel it is well beyond time that I shut my trap and just listen. Being a whale in a millpond gives a nice sense of security, but it reveals its falsities once one discovers the ocean.

In the millpond, you get lazy. In the millpond, you grow a nice big fat cushy butt, and all you do is sit on it.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Monday, April 11, 2011

Can Art Save the World?

...if it could, I sure hope it would hurry up and lower gas prices!

Seriously, though. You have to be living under a rock in America not to notice that things are falling apart. I'm not afraid to admit that it has me worried... very worried. I thought a few months ago that the recession was "getting better". Now, I feel like it's getting worse. I worry about how long this will go on, how much more damage will be done, and what our future is going to look like. I hesitate to get into a lengthy post about politics and global economy... mostly because I don't know nearly enough to take a fully educated stand.

But I can say one thing with certainty: the only thing we can do is to keep going. Some of the problems we face as Americans can seem insurmountable, and I have a hunch that continuing to take money from the taxpayers is NOT ever going to be the answer for our government-induced problems, but as an individual, I have faith that God will continue to provide for me. If we all just give up, surely things will fall apart even more. But if we keep going, keep pressing on, we will at least be moving into the future with a clear conscience, knowing that we're doing our best :)

Maybe all we really need is some sunshine, and a vacation? I could do with a margarita and a beach right now :)

New "Magnolia Sunshine Center Necklace" by Mirilovelove

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Fashion Doodles

Just some fun fashion doodlies I did during a few breaks at work :)
Click image for larger ~

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Ace of Cakes Does Cirque du Soleil!

As a bunch of you guys may know, I'm working on the tour of Totem for Cirque du Soleil :) I'm in my first week, and it's definitely been an experience. Last night was our Premiere in Baltimore, and Charm City Cakes (from the show "Ace of Cakes") sculpted an amazing 5 foot tall cake in honour of the show!

I just had to show you guys because it was super cool!
EVERYTHING IS EDIBLE! But I think this was an "eat with your eyes only" cake ;)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Secrets of Success

"All the so-called 'secrets of success' will not work unless you do."
Anonymous, from Jael Segura's blog

 Silly doodles in my sketchbook, aka doing whatever the heck I want with anatomy!

Monday, April 4, 2011

"You can't draw what isn't in your brain. 
So you must feed your brain.
And you feed your brain by looking at the real world. 

Stop practicing failure."
Kev Ferrara 

I love this quote. It has so much truth, yet it is put so simply.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Waiting for Ghosts, and Progress Shots

As promised, here are the progress shots for "Waiting for Ghosts". I spent more time than I normally do on this, but I think it paid off. I really enjoyed working in the subtle and delicate palette; she reminds me of a ballerina :)

Okay I'll shut up and show you the art.
Click for larger view.

I also have created a new line of Cameo Rings, now with fancier filigree frames and cool spring-inspired designs. I'll be updating my Etsy Shop over the week with them. But here's a preview for you, blog-followers ;)
New Line of Colourful Cameo Rings by Erin McManness

Also, I wanted to clarify just one thing about my previous "Why I'm Single" post. I do believe that I will be in a relationship again, it's just that, at this time in my life, I'm fine being single ;) But later in life, I'm perfectly happy to find my own McDreamy ;)

Also I start my job with Cirque du Soleil tomorrow!!!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Why I'm Single.

Let's take a personal, almost-non-art moment here, little blog.

I am not sure if I'm meant to be with someone for the rest of my life. I don't mean this is in a weepy, annoying "where is the right man for meeeee?!" way. In fact, the opposite. At the moment, I am happily single. I have been for three years. I can't deny that in the past it's been nice to be able to count on someone (I did have a 5 year relationship, afterall, and we were practically married), but part of me seriously wonders what the future will bring.

For the past year, I have been incredibly focused on getting my career to where I want it to be. I strongly and firmly hold onto the belief that my career will never wake up one day and tell me it doesn't love me, while a man? Well. After several boyfriends pulling this awesome tactic, it just leaves a woman ready to count on other things, and rightfully so. I can always count on myself, God, and my talents to be with me; who can blame me for relying on these instead of past disappointments? And the weird thing is, I'm just content. Sure, I have moments of loneliness, but I am overall content and focused. I really just want to have fun.

I guess the catalyst to this post was an incident out at the bar. Tonight I was out with some girlfriends, and we snagged a table near two friends in their mid-thirties. At one point, while one woman was screaming on the phone, her friend turned to us and shouted, "NEVER GET MARRIED!". To make a long story short, we got most of the horrifying story of this woman's divorce, and how she had to pick up the phone because this dude would apparently show up at her house if she didn't, and how she'd already called the cops on him several times. Apparently it got pretty ugly.

My friends seemed to just shrug it off after they left, but I took this to heart. I don't want my life to turn into Miller-Lites-and-screaming-matches-at-the-bar without me knowing it. I wish there was a better way to say this, but I simply don't put a lot of faith in the institution of marriage anymore. I mean, I want to. But there's not much evidence that it works out most of the time. I know if and when I say my vows, I want to mean them with all my heart, but I come from a broken home, and I learned at a very young age that in the end, it's everyone for themselves. My mother taught me how to be independent so I could always go on if I had no one else but myself. She taught me how to be strong, and how to count on myself instead of relying on someone else. Because you never know. And I've learned that the hard way.

When confronted with the possibility of maybe dating again, I feel I tend to shy away. I just prefer to do what I want, and I have no idea where I'm going to "end up", so the prospect of a boyfriend in this nomadic period in my life is sort of silly to me. All I know is that the only thing I'm ready to take seriously is my art, and my career. Art brings me so much joy and so much purpose, and that's all I want from my life right now.

Blackbird singin' in the dead of night
Take these broken wings and learn to fly.
All your life; you were only waiting 
for this moment to arise.
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