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My sister’s birthday present!


It’s about time I share with you the painting I did for my sister’s birthday back in September!

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I was a little late since it was on the 29th, which was five days after Adam’s birthday and I honestly FORGOT. First time it ever happened to me to actually forget something so big! But I was just so focused on my little boy’s birthday present and also my whole au pair experience that I literally forgot about my amazing sister’s b-day! I remembered the night before and I knew I was fucked…

So, as the thought brutally hit me and the Universe reclaimed my heart back since I didn’t need one anyway, I jumped on my sketchbook (that she gave me btw) to find the best idea. And, thank G*d, I figured it out almost instantly; it was pretty easy.

My sister had been harassing me for the past few days with a tutorial video she found online about how to paint a tree using acrylics and she was like “I want a blue, a green, a red, and also a yellow one” or whatever. And I told her, “Well, you better get to work now!” And she insisted “But I wanted you to paint it for me… *puppy eyes*”. And so did I, “I gave mom a few brushes and nice acrylic paints too the other day. You should borrow it from her and practice for the trees.” Of course, in the back of my head I was thinking of making one for her eventually one day but little did I know (I should’ve!) that her birthday was just around the corner…

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Sacrifice ALL THE SLEEP WHO CARES?

Of course, just the tree seemed a little too “basic” for me. Like, “you’ve asked, there you go”. And that’s not how birthday presents should be. Sure, it’s more than okay to give what a person actually expressed orally that they wanted. But is that really enough? Not for someone that matters this much to me. Happy birthday means thanks for existing (still) and I’m thankful to have known you for so long. And my sister has practically raised me alongside my mom. She was my second mom as I used to call her, or more like my dad since I used to give her the school’s presents for Father’s day haha So I had to bring some more symbolic in there and make her feel something more intense when she’d look at it!

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February 1997 (a 5-month-old piece of fat)

And so, I thought about this beautiful picture of her holding me as a baby. It’s one of my favorite pictures ever and since I have it with me, I figured I could easily blend it in the painting of the tree; some way, somehow. And so I did.

Blended her body with the tree’s trunk and roots because she is my roots and solid ground. She carried me along the way, lifted me up and made me into the strong woman I am still becoming. She is my mom and my home. And so here we are in the center of the painting, hugging and glowing together. Her favorite color is green and one of mine is yellow. And the reason I went for blue for the leaves rather than her favorite color is because it is my mom’s favorite color and the ocean’s and it has always been for me a motherly color. A strong and warm(yeah I know it’s not technically but to me, yes), comforting color, surrounding us, holding us together.

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Sure, I was late and I got the idea really quickly, didn’t put a large amount of thought into it. But I put lots of hours working on it and lots of heart into it also! There’s a lot of meaning in there and it’s also very pleasing to look at. And most importantly, my sister loved it! What more could I ask for?

Until next post, love, love with all you’ve got! ❀

P.S.: If you’re reading this, je t’aime Lucie πŸ˜‰

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DIY pencil holder


Today, I finally finished a little DIY I had pending and waiting in my closet for a week now. It is nothing new to me for it is something I have been doing forever since my sister taught me. In the house, we’ve always been about reusing stuff, creative recycling and just plain don’t-throw-too-much-away-we-don’t-have-money-to-buy-loads-of-stuff-so-build-your-dreams-yourself!

When I was younger, my beautiful sister introduced me to toilet rolls recycling. And as it turns out, when you just stop for a minute before you throw something in the bin, you realize there’s so much more adventure ahead of it. Also, I’m not gonna lie, my sister and I are basically hoarders and we just have that tendency to just keep things, “in case”. But anyways, not the story I’m telling today!IMG_20171111_124742.jpg

So, what I made is a pencil holder. Something that can always come in handy AND also make your desk look more organized and stylish (given these are things you aspire for). Now, they sure do sell really cool stuff out there. Simple, straight-to-the-point ones and crazier ones. Colorful, weird shapes, only one simple cup or dozen of compartments to fit a thousand pens. But, when you’re looking to save money you don’t even have, toilet paper rolls will do just fine. And you only need seven and a little bit of time!

 

What I love the most about this is that it’s really easy to make and once you’ve gather enough rolls, it’s ready in a matter of minutes! And you can customize it any way you want!!!

I went for an “unfinished” type of look. I really didn’t need it to be perfect or anything so I tried to make it look cool without doing too much either. AND I’d like to point out that I did put some orange on there even though I hate the color. I wanted to go for a colorwheel feel but put another color instead of or**ge and then I decided why the fuck?Β  Why should orange have less opportunities to shine than any other color just cos i don’t like it? Why should i treat colors different than people? And I just put it on! Well, quite a story we have there… haha

How to? Here are the easy steps to follow:

  • Gather enough toilet paper rolls. Seven will do but you can get more if you want a bigger pencil holder! I used six and a long one from a kitchen roll for the middle.IMG_20171111_120431.jpg
  • Get a piece of paper or cardboard and dispose your rolls on it however you want them to go. I usually do a flower shape like on the picture, with the longest one in the middle. Then trace it around them and cut the paper into the right shape.
  • Then, you just stick it onto the paper/cardboard so you have a more solid base and also, so the pencils won’t fall off if you move it around. Honestly, if you’re just going to leave it on your desk, you might not even need to do that, just glue/tape the rolls together and the trick is done! πŸ˜‰
  • Then you just paint it or you don’t. You can do whatever you want to make it look good to you and blend into your desk paysage. And there you have it, a brand new pencil holder exactly how you need it!

That’s how I’ve been making them since forever. But you can get more creative with it if you feel like it. There’s tons of different ways you can revisit it and make it your own. We all don’t have the same pencil needs. Ha haΒ IMG_20171111_120436.jpg

I, for example, added a little(very very small, man; I didn’t think it through) compartment in the front for paper clips and whatnots. Right now I only put googly eyes in it but ya know.

I like having a tall one in the middle so I can put different things in there like rulers or plastic flowers! It turns out it was the perfect size for my long paintbrushes so they can now finally enjoy the fresh air out of their case. Besides, I think it makes it look even cooler to have brushes in there; it screams “I’M An ARtIsTT So?” πŸ˜›

Color-coding isn’t exactly my thing but I guess it can be a good idea to organize your compartments. Also, if you really have loads of time on your hands, you can add a little top on one or many of them to put stuff other than pens in there. You can also tie a string in there and hang it somewhere. And you can also cut the rolls in half and and make smaller compartments for other stuff.

Endless possibilities… I got your attention focused on the toilet rolls, now you go and be creative about it and fill your house (don’t, please) with useful toilet diy!

I do realize this post would’ve been much more interesting to look at had IΒ  thought about taking more “step by step” pictures. But I just had no intention of posting about that. Only this morning I figured I should post about it now that it’s finished, because, considering the reaction of my Irish family, this is not exactly what comes into mind when you see the end of your toilet paper roll. Sharing is caring! Save the rolls!

My room is still pretty messy but, excuse me, I’m still trying to figure out how to work on everything I care about all the while doing my job and being the best version of me that I can be each day(even when sick/exhausted/out of it) for the kids and also socialize and go out and explore. It’s really hard. HOW! But yeah, at least I have a cool pencil holder now and my small cupboard is not so messy anymore (unless you look inside… hehe)

Until next post, may your pencils never be homeless again! ❀

Oh Deer, let Light and Darkness kiss again!


 Last week, I unexpectedly joined my family for a picnic in the woods. And, little did I know that it would not only, bring me back on my feet (I had a miserable weekend) but also surprise me in the loveliest possible way: I saw a live deer.23336382_1615479725186097_207816256_o

Growing up on my island, I spent loads of time with my nose stuck in books (mostly about animals or Egypt but honestly, just reading anything I could find lying around the house too haha) and I had never seen many animals which are pretty common in mainland France up until I went to Lille two years ago. Swans, magpies, and even ducks(I only saw a few when I was tiny but man, a long time ago..)!

I only finally saw them for real two years ago. Up until that point, it was all just book pictures in my head. Things I knew of, things I knew to be real but never actually saw with my own two eyes and so I did not have that feeling/relationship(?) with it. They had that mystery to them, some kind of magic that comes from only knowing something the way your imagination can conceive it.

And the first time I saw them, I was struck with awe. It’s almost like seeing my childhood heroes. I remember those long hours spend lying on the floor or on a couch just staring at these glossy pages in the books, examining every inch of each picture just to get a somewhat clear memory of it engraved in my mind.

I am really happy, though, to be able to say that seeing them IRL does not take away the magic but only adds on, and also more frills. Nature is scary beautiful in that fragile-though-almighty way.

When I saw the deer, my brain just went *blop* *happy* and also, many (MANY) flashbacks to the Hannibal tv series… Ha ha! I had a small though intense phase last year where I got a tad bit obsessed with deer and drew loads of them. It was at the time I had started watching Hannibal and was shamelessly embracing my love for horror and disgusting stuff. In midst all the blood and chaos, those deer that I drew brought in some light in my dark room and mind.

I got pictures of all the deer drawings that I did in that short period to display them right here, in this post, and look back with a bittersweet smile on my face.

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I honestly loved the Hannibal show. And I’d have so much to say about it, but I’d rather not enlarge on the matter. What I’m going to say though is that it brought a lot of good out me, a lot of inspiration and reflections on life, and art… And deer!! At that time, I was going through a rough patch and things weren’t really good at all; I was at war with myself and also being sat on fire by other beings whom I thought were worth all the burns (spoiler alert: they weren’t). It was a dark time but weirdly enough(or not at all), I found comfort in this show and it brought loads of good things into my mind.

And as I type this, I’m reminded that my Thomas Harris books stayed at my mom’s house, several thousand kilometers away from me and I’d love to dive back in Red Dragon now. Heartbreaking thought, I must confess. That book was so good! And what a shame I didn’t even have time to read the other two before I had to abandon them in my nest in order to take my leap and fly so far away from it. I’ll probably get mom to send them back to me or something at some point anyway, I just know it.

That deer was beautiful. I’m not going to lie, there was a drop of disappointment as my eyes found their way to the live body of what used to fuel my pencil on my sketchbook months ago. I was delighted to see a deer and really happy. And there was magic. But, the truth is that there is always that drop of disappointment.

Whenever you finally come to face with something you’ve only been dreaming about, reading about, looking at pictures of, it is here, in the back of your mouth or tickling the inside of your eyelids. That tiny drop of disappointment, tightly seated next to the tears of joy and surprise, keeping the back of your throat moist as you scream “Oh God, I’m alive!”. I think it is nearly impossible not to have expectations, as humans, as creatures that dream and hope. And, the longer the road you have to walk between the moment it first captures your attention and monopolizes parts of your mind and heart, the bigger the expectations (no matter how small), and the bitter the drop of disappointment.23269934_1615479551852781_2080742452_o

You will be excited, you will be delighted; happiness, tears, smiles and fire inside. But it’ll be here, whether you feel it or not. Sometimes, even through the happy storm, there will be more than one drop. You might not be able to feel it, but it’ll be here. It might not ruin your happy time, but it’ll be here. And I think it’s important to acknowledge that.

It’s a reminder in a way, isn’t it? That there is never just one emotion, one feeling, one sensation; never just one thing happening at once. Life is plural. There’s always lots happening at once. We’re always feeling so much at once. Different intensities, different temperatures, different shapes, different causes and different spots hit. But at once. And you get to decide where the focus is.

You can focus on the pebble in your shoe. And then, you can shift the focus and go on think about that headache you have now. And you can move that focus as much as you want, as much as your mind is able to before it runs out of energy. Or you can keep the focus on one point tiny as it may be and make it seem bigger than that big bright sun shining out your window. You get to choose. Or, at least you have the possibility to do so. The power is in your hands but I guess the battery can’t always be full enough to enjoy its wide range of possibilities.

I saw that deer and the second I did, as I had a miserable weekend and I still had my negative glasses on, I felt the drop of disappointment. And I swallowed it, and the taste lingered on but I didn’t mind it; I enjoyed it. I let it do its job and I minded my own business, took pictures of the deer and tried to get over the fact that “Wow, there is a real deer in front of me!”.

Trying hard not to make this a generalization but I’ve met quite a few people with a positive outtake on life, those striving for a happy existence, and I always feel like they are missing out on something. I’m not a pessimistic. I’m not an optimistic either. I might actually strongly be both and usually all at the same time because I’m a walking disaster. But I just don’t think that being positive and happy is about rejecting nor ignoring the dark bits, the negative points, the heavy stuff. I think it’s all about accepting light and darkness no matter the amount or diversity of what’s within you. It’s about accepting them as a part of life, as a part of you and dealing with them, and maybe just learning to co-exist again.

19250288_1615479531852783_348158042_oIn my opinion, those people that I’ve met wrongly believe that negative = bad. Sure, negative vibes are definitely bad news and can dismantle the strongest of ships and you don’t want them around. But, think about balance, think about Nature and how everything serves a purpose. Blocking out all sadness, negative thoughts, anything that’s not rainbows and butterflies is going to ruin you on the long run. These things are part of being a human and you can’t just wipe them out of the board because you want things to look neat.

Life is not neat. Humans are not tidy inside. And you have to let it in, let it happen, let it out, let it roll over you…

Some things you have to face and break, some things you just have to throw straightaway and others you just have to sit down and swallow and maybe get some ice cream to let it make its way down your throat. And it’s something you learn to do, like recycling!

You learn where to put the tin cans and the glass bottles and the papers; you learn what can be reused, what just goes to waste and what things don’t go together even though they will serve a similar purpose. And sometimes you don’t want to throw something away although it belongs in the bin but you figure out some clever way to turn it into something useful, something you can still keep in your home and you transform it with your own two hands.

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learning on and on

There’s a required balance in all of that rickety machinery inside. And it doesn’t always make sense. It’s not a simple list of do’s and don’t’s. It’s complex but at the same time, so easy. The darkness is part of life, part of light. There are dark spots in light, and light spots in darkness. And you can’t just try to wipe one side out cos that’ll mess you up. Gotta find the right middle. Equilibrium.

I’ve learned and am still learning that it’s okay not to be okay. And it’s okay to feel down, to feel sad, to feel horrible, even when you’re in a happy place, with happy people and you are happy. Because life is not a monochrome painting. It’s as complex and simple and intense as a five-year-old’s painting. And it’s beautiful.

My darkness keeps getting brighter and my fire finally feels like it’s actually burning. I love sharing and I hope that through my words, music and art(and rare smiles?) I reach some hearts, minds or just the eyes, really and shed some darkness; the good kind. No matter how very few that might be, I hope that some people read me and that it makes them questions things, think, feel or just smile cos I’m so dramatic about everything it’s funny. I hope that whenever my darkness shines and people get a peek inside, I hope that it makes a difference to them, even the tiniest and that somewhere along the way, some way, somehow, it helps them.

Until next post, let yourself learn, and let your darkness shine. ❀

A Storm in a Teacup, a drawing & words 9.19.17


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So, I’m this weird cup. And what you can’t see is all the cracks between the pieces. There’s glue keeping them together but it’s cheap glue, hope/will/faith/strength/light/fuel; cheap glue. It’s always leaking!

It’s holding this black liquid inside, probably not something you’d want to drink. And it’s always leaking through the cracks. I try to hold it in, all the while dreading the big BREAK (and secretly wishing for it).

The Storm gets windy and I spill some. Will I ever run out? Will I break? Will there be glue again then?


Drew it while on the phone with my sister. It is (as weird as it feels for me to say it like that, I’ll admit) a self-portrait.

The name came from that little paragraph I wrote in a notebook back at my mom’s place last month after I learned the idiom “A storm in a teacup”. Basically, it means to make a big deal out of nothing and I thought, “Shit, saaaame.” And well, that’s about it for the story. Ha ha! πŸ˜‰

I was very amused when I discovered that sentence because, first of all, my over-dramatic self can relate and secondly, THE STORM guys!! And I do love me some tea! It just made so much sense these specific words put together like this.

That morning when I started drawing, I had no idea what I was doing. Just killing time, waiting for the cleaning lady to leave so I could get down to my business and lipsync to some ol’ rock’n’roll. And it wasn’t until I started messing up the top of the skull and ran downstairs to get some duct tape in an attempt to fix it that I saw the opportunity to link this fresh work to this older paragraph.

That’s a thing I love to do! Connections. When I create something new and I find that I can actually make a link between that fresh piece of me and an older one that I either left to macerate in a notebook or just kept somewhere deep in a folder cos it just made no sense at all. It’s a beautiful feeling. I do feel like a genius. Which I certainly am not. But it feels great. I’m like “wow, I did a thing with another thing” and I’m happy. And that’s a feeling I long for.

In other news, I enrolled for an evening art class at the community school which will take place on Tuesdays for ten weeks I think. So that’s something to look forward to! I’m really excited to start!! What I hope it brings me is knowledge and new skills, a little bit more confidence, new friends and the opportunity(and motivation?) to create more often. Can’t wait to begin and blooooooooooooom IT STARTS NEXT WEEK (only three more days to wait)

Until next post, keep doing what you love ❀

Color Me Undead: a poem and a drawing


COLOR ME UNDEAD

Sunshine is a false friend.

The weather never stays the same inside this hurricane:

Sky’s grey, then blue, then white;

There’s sun and then it rains.

I just never know when it’s safe to rest.

I gotta keep on the move

Always, even when I lose my groove.

Paint me, pain,

For I am a canvas

And I’ve been blank for too long now.

The ground isn’t very stable.

I keep falling in these muddy puddles.

They take away my colors; leave me numb.

Mean cycle; recycle…

Mom, rock me back to my cradle.

Sunshine is a false friend,

The storm it never ends!

Paint me, pain.

Paint me again,

Over and over again.

Give me a face.

Give me hard times.

And, please, leave a trace.

Weather forecast calls for the peeling of my soul.

Layer by layer I melt away

Under the merciless waves

Of this self-perpetuated hell.

Acid rains devour my core.

I barely bleed as I lose my skin.

Colorless; colorblind; who am I?

Paint me, pain.

Help me be again.

Show me I’m alive,

Not living in vain!

Show me who I am!

Show me that I can

Be more than a stain…

There’s still blood in these veins

And strength in these legs.

And next time,

When it rains,

Come back faster to me, friend,

And paint me sane & chained!

Color me undead;

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The drawing was fueled by Halfnoise’s EP The Velvet Face and Paramore’s latest song(which I’m so asdfghjkl about). So I was really feeling that colorful but mournful vibe. Which was already pretty strong with my post Pain is a color and I’m a rainbow.Β And the first draft of the poem was fueled by the drawing. And then the real thing was fueled by the storm and insomnia and also eating a green apple past midnight.

It’s 4AM, I’ll try to catch some Zs now. There’s so much I need to say; I’ll try to write a post and let it out, maybe this week, maybe later, I don’t even know anymore.

Until next post, don’t eat apples after midnight and get some sleep ❀

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Latest drawings


I’ve been posting them mostly on instagram lately mostly, so here are the three last drawings I did this month. The pics’ quality is as usual pretty lame but you can still get a good idea of the thing on the paper! πŸ˜‰

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The last one I finished just now. There’s this quote from my post “Pain is a color and I’m a rainbow. Darkness isn’t necessarily black.” which popped in my mind as soon as I picked up my crayons and inspired me to draw this self-portrait.

I still haven’t managed to finish my first draft of Chapter VII of Uncage and man, I’m so tired! I really want it to be over and done. I need to finish that story! It’s just so hard to squeeze it out. I need to try a little harder!

Anyways. That’s it for today. I’m not feeling so good, pretty tired. Tomorrow I gotta be somewhere and it’s making me anxious. I’ll surely write about it when I get back. If I survive, I mean! πŸ˜›

Until then, just keep those vitamins coming and drink lots of water! ❀

Untitled acrylic on paper, 2.16.17


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So, I kind of (totally) ruined the face on my portrait and Β now I can’t bring myself to go back to working on it just yet. I had two pretty shitty days. Not completely shitty. Rather bittersweet but really tough on that bitter part. The taste still haunts the back of my mouth.

Anyways, so I painted this today instead of working on the portrait. I’m like really happy with how it turned out. All the colors put together and the texture and wow. Shame though that my pictures don’t really let it shine through. However, I have noticed that the pictures that I take on my phone do look a little better while I’m on my computer so I actually have a small hope now that you might see it in a slightly better quality that I do. I can NOT see the turquoise at the bottom of the painting on my phone, it’s like dark blue and on the computer is better. So yeah. Still frustrated though. Ha ha!16808739_1361814600552612_2145723990_n

I didn’t give this painting a name. It just doesn’t have one. It’s filled with sadness, hope and dreams is all I can say. I painted it while listening to a playlist of Wet’s songs on youtube. I just love their music and sometimes it’s really all I need to listen to.

I still haven’t completely lost my mind. But I hardly see myself surviving another month without a guitar in my bed. It’s just so hard, you know. I mean, I already don’t have a cat or a dog or anything, which is bad enough considering I grew up with pets and it’s such an empty life without at least one around. But no guitar just makes this whole thing more pointless. I can feel all my energy just being drained from my body and mind and pretty soon I’ll be a more literal mess.

I also am putting a lot of pressure on myself because this is important and it feels like it’s been three years since I last played. I have barely a one-year experience as left-handed player and it can just fade so fast in such short time. I’m gonna go crazy over guitar practice when I buy a new one because I’m just crazy about this whole thing and I’ve been slacking off so much ever since I was born and I gotta work or I’ll never get anywhere I’d like to. This is horrible.

Good things are coming my way in a little less than two weeks. There’s the rock show, the singing lessons, going to Paris to meet KimΒ and just, you know, still breathing! But right now, it just weighs on me a lot and it’s fucking hard. I’m still pushing through which is great, I guess. Not giving up, that’s good. But you know, I won’t lie. It’s really hard on me. And the mess I made with my portrait just kicked me down too. I’m in a real fragile place right now which makes me even more sensitive than usual.

I keep trying to be positive to make things fall into place thanks to the power of a positive mind, you know. But I’m like, on the floor right now and can’t get that frown off my face. I really hope I can manage to buy that guitar next month.

Alright, this post is going nowhere. So I’ll just end it here. If I keep writing, it’ll just be me saying on and on how tired I am and how my mind is cracking and I NEED GUITARASDFGHJKL

Fruits & vegetables ❀