Friday, March 22, 2013

Inspired: Marisa Redondo

Marisa Redondo creates beautiful organic paintings inspired by the natural beauties of her current surroundings in Northern California. Working with oils and watercolors, she seeks to capture the unique patterns and colors of nature (which she does quite well). I find her choice of colors and the intricacy of detail in her work fascinating. You can find all of Redondo's work in her Etsy store, River Luna. These are a few of my favorites:

Gathering Bundle
In Bloom
Tree Ring Feathers
Stick Collection

Sunday, March 17, 2013

A [Concerto] for Sunday: Elgar's Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85

[Mom, this post is for you]

I think there comes a point (or many points) in a child's life when one must admit that their parents were right, at least about a few things, or (more likely) about many things. This is one of those moments.

Growing up, especially in my teenage years, I didn't quite understand my parents' insistence on listening to classical music. As an avid pianist, I had a certain appreciation for a well-written classic. But must we listen to KBAQ every Sunday morning? Must we find a classical radio station on every roadtrip? Do we have to break out the symphonies when cleaning the house? Can't we listen to something else for a change? [accompanied by the perfected thirteen-year-old eye role]

I was sick of playing Chopin's Rondo during piano lessons. I didn't want to listen to any more Bach. The musc was old, the masters were dead: Let them rest in peace. 

There is this process, however, of maturation that (quite fortunately!) begins to reshape and remodel tastes of the adolescent brain and (oh, thank God!) remove the voracious appetite for catchy, repetitive, mind-numbing pop music- a process that might lead one to eventually look in the mirror and discover (how did this happen?!) that one quite resembles her mother... [In some regards this might be every girl-child's nightmare, but not all inherited traits are undesirable]

All of this is to say, by the time we decide to have children, I told Nate the other day, I will likely carry on the family tradition of torturing my children with that dreaded classical music. (He's not quite on board with this yet, but just wait- you'll see....). **[note: in my mind this child-having will not happen yet for about ten years, just in case anyone is getting ahead of themselves.] Tucson's classical music station, with its predictable, yet strangely comforting, baritone intonements of the title, composer, and performer of each piece by a seemingly-omnipotent yet unremarkable announcer, now has a home on my radio presets and, though it must play second fiddle to NPR, still manages to beat out that local "mix" station a good chunk of the time [in my "old age" and with this newly discovered phenomenon of commuting, I have no patience for listening to the same four songs on repeat]. We went to the (excellent) concert of the UA Chamber Orchestra, not just because of a friend's membership in said orchestra, but out of an actual longing for some lovely evening entertainment. 

And thus, with no further ado, I present to you Elgar's Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85, performed by the talented Jacqueline Du Pre. Enjoy:

(Take that, ya kids with your blasted auto-tuned racket you call music.)

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Weekend Links

A book story by Nina Katchadourian
It's the weekend! (And the end is in sight for my thesis!) Spring has arrived in Tucson, and with it comes the reminder that Summer is not far behind. So begins the short window of perfect Arizona weather, after the chill has left the air but before the sun begins to scorch us. To celebrate, I've compiled this collection of links for you from around the web. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm out to get some sunshine. 

Tohono Chul is having their Annual Spring Plant Sale (and this is where I'll be tomorrow- succulents!)

Beautiful Bay Lights in San Francisco

I'm thinking of trying this recipe out for breakfast tomorrow

Make your own lovely earrings

A handy guide to pairing food and wine

A fantastic South Philly abode

This map is awesome

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Inspired: Maja Lindberg

I have to admit, the hedgehog illustration is the primary reason I found this artist (Hedgehogs are my catnip). Anyways, back on track: Maja Lindberg is a designer/illustrator from Sweden who draws ethereal portraits of animals and fairytales and other such things. I find her use of light most striking in her illustrations- an effect that gives a depth to her dreamlike figures. These are a few of my favorites from her pieces. (You can check out all of her work for sale in her Etsy shop here.)

Evening Swim
Ocean Deep
The Hedgehog

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The kind of post inspired by too many hours of air travel

The sun fell below the horizon long ago but still
along the mountains hangs a choking orange glow that
burns the sky with bands of blue remnants of day
last lingering on unwilling to succumb before the
sweeping creeping darkness
engines hum a steady cacophony drowning the simplest
thought smothering sense dulling mind to even
most jolting terror as she looks across
clouds to see light has gone diving into impending
blackness and fireflies dancing below
(Afterglow, author unknown)

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Songs for Sunday: Lady Lamb the Beekeeper

I have to thank NPR for this one. After hearing a charming interview on All Things Considered with Aly Spaltro, known on stage as Lady Lamb the Beekeeper, on the drive home, I just had to go find a bit more of her music. This girl has an incredible voice, and her brand new album Ripley Pine is fantastic. I highly recommend getting yourself a copy. If these videos aren't enough to convince you, check out her live session with The Wild Honey Pie (and download a free copy of her performance).