a new year, a new yet same of everything

Amy Stroup, one of my favourite singer/songwriters in 2011 updated her fans in an e-mail with her mantra, "Alas, We Aspire." As I read Stroup's mantra, I couldn't help but think of Laura Marling's "Alas, I Cannot Swim." These are two opposite quotes and meanings, only shared by the exclaiming and exquisite classic remark of 'alas'. Still, there's a part that draws me in.

As 2012 draws nearer, I think of how I want to overcome some of my greatest fears. I think of how I want to approach this new and upcoming year. I had second thoughts about having any resolutions or goals until I read [this] and decided I want to become the same, but an evolved and better person.

I'm not sure what the future holds, but I can only hope for the best and know I want to aspire and be.

A soon to be HAPPY NEW YEAR in 2012!!!

"Cause life without revision will silence our souls."
-Sleeping at Last


greetings from a holiday without snow

a few random iPhone photos and random thoughts

I climbed the Great Wall of China for the fourth time. 
But it was the first time I saw the grandness of 
the serpentine landscape going for miles and miles. 
At the Great Wall, I made this new furry friend of a happy camel.

Retail therapy never felt better, especially when in Hong Kong.

I am obsessed with glasses.
I'm also going for the indie/nerdy/cool look in 2012.



an interview with Autumn Sky

Autumn Sky is a multi-instrumentalist and multi-award winning singer/songwriter from Sacramento, California. She has released an album, All Which Isn't Singing and a recent single, "I Light Afire." Although I have never met Autumn in person, I feel as though I know her bubbly personality through the early days of MySpace to Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Earlier this year, Autumn graciously allowed me to interview her via e-mail (it's later this year, but I thought I really need to post this now). Besides her music, I wanted to know more behind Autumn's colourful and playful style, which I love so much. Here are her words...

Where did you get your bright and happy sense of style?
From story book characters, actually. I read a lot of classic literature and I always wanted to be like the heroines in my stories and wear pretty, old fashioned things.

Which fashion era is your favourite?
France in the 1950's. I love the simplicity of it all. It all appears very streamlined without losing its sense of beauty, shape and sometimes even coolness. That's the things about French fashion, is that it doesn't need all the extra accessories to work. Americans really love their accessories but that doesn't mean that an outfit can't live without them.

What do you think is the trendiest style? What do you think is the worst style and should be banned?
The trendiest style right now is probably the music-festival-in-the-summer thing that's been happening lately, with all the shorts and neon and experimenting with deconstructed t-shirts and jeans. It's actually kind of cool because it started out with regular people, instead of starting in fashion houses somewhere out in a huge city. All these kids had to find something to wear that was hip, but wasn't going to cause them heat stroke, so they cut up their t-shirts. And now they sell them at Urban Outfitters, it's kind of funny.

And the trend I dislike the most right now is probably the futuristic look, with the painful heels and millions of spikes everywhere. I can't imagine ever feeling comfortable in stuff like that. But, that being said, to each their own. I'm only saying this because it's not my personal favorite, there are definitely girls out there in the world who make the look really good.

Coco Chanel said, "fashion is in the sky, the way we live, what is happening."
Do you believe that fashion is found in music?
Absolutely. I actually buy mostly dresses now because when I started out I didn't have any money, and so to make sure that I had the right clothes for performances, I would only buy performance clothes. Now my at-home style is a lot more like what I'd wear on stage, which is actually nice. I don't feel like I have two wardrobes anymore and I actually really like feeling more dressed up. Dressing up makes me feel like a lady.

Have you ever found yourself writing a song about one of your dresses or a favourite pair of shoes?
Yes, I have; I have a song called "Lovers Theme" where I mention buying a new dress and green shoes to wear on a date, and a song called "Jacket" about a boy who looks very handsome in one. :)

(I have also interviewed Autumn Sky on music at my other blog here.)


Starfish of China + love.

I miss and love these babies SO much.


2011 Christmas letter

It's done! And just for the record, I didn't mean the colours to match my blog.
It just happens I love colours.


some lessons to be learned

 photo via Lyla and Blue

This past week has been a whirlwind. Literally. I have learned a lot about life through various everyday people, creating a documentary and a wild wind blowing through a city of salty snow. Empowered by talking to a guy named A and rock and roll, I decided to have the attitude of Jimi Hendrix. I figured something out which is, I'm gonna do what I wanna do and nobody is going to stop me. Suddenly, all these doors of possibility opened and I was optimistic about what I will to do and who I will become. If I want to be a rock star tomorrow, then I'm going to do what I gotta do. I instantly became stoked for life. A gentleman with Harry Potter glasses who says hello to me by fist bumping and waves made me realize that all I need at the end of the day is a genuine good-hearted someone who can make me smile. Two days earlier, I was sitting in the Union, where live music was being played. There was a fiery glow about the trumpeter's face and I knew right then and there that doing what you're passionate about is far greater than the money. It just had to be true. Then two later after I premiered my documentary, I got thinking that just maybe film chose me. I hope this is true and maybe my dreams about Sundance will one day be a fulfilled reality. And in a terrifying wind storm, who knew something could be so dramatically scary? I can say I am incredibly grateful for where I have been and all that I have.



The story of this film came to my mind while I was sick with a terrible cold. The characters are real and alive, they are everyday people I know, love and have loved. Working on this project was a lot of work, more than I expected. But I learned and loved the process of creating. I haven't been serious about film making since four years ago. And holding a camera, directing actors and post production in editing and sound felt like revisiting my inner passionate film making self that never left me. I am grateful for all the actors who participated and for all the support I've received while making and debuting my film. I have always been insecure about my art, but I can say this film has turned into a work I am proud of. This film has also brought back the spark of silver screen life to me. It's what I needed to continue creating, aspiring to and doing what I love. So, I'm sharing this work with you and I hope you'll enjoy. Thanks for watching and listening.


let art define you

For all you artists out there, read THIS! These words are my muse and inspiration for living today and everyday.


and so, my soul sings

Though my soul wanders
Through streets and treacherous waters,
I am never lost if I remember
The sun and stars are on my side
Because I am the captain of my soul.


creature fear

Around this time of the year, my friends and I usually go looking for fear. But this year instead, Halloween and fear found me after being tested for TB (result is probably negative) and being left alone in the dark with this creepy mannequin. Anyways...just thought I would say Happy Halloween!


un loup garçon dans le parc

now it's raining, think I'll go inside

photo taken outside of lab in WEB | chroma keying

I don't know how I did it, but I survived this week. I survived all the late nights staying up. And now a huge flood of relief is in me. At least for the next week or so. But through these long days and all the pouring rain of lately, I have seen and felt the good. The cold weather has brought back merino wool, scarves and tights back in style. Despite the noise of others, I have come to love the students I teach at the studio and at the rehab. I have been a crazy mad woman, but friends and strangers alike have comforted me, while under the weather of school. Though the sadness of Steve Job's passing pierces all Apple lovers, I have found inspiration through one of the world's most visionary revolutionist. The list goes on and on, but my point being...there is always good in many of one of those days.

iMISSYOU, we miss you, Steve Jobs


take two and action

My film kills me. It's so bad that it's become terribly funny. I really am laughing. Really.


life in technicolour

Today has been one of those magical days. Magical because a really nice guy you barely know and a stranger kindly offers to help you. And then suddenly, the magic brings you to believe in goodness in the world all over again.


art friday

Phillips Gallery | top floor

Usually, I see art in other cities. But this time, I went to see art in my city.


this weekend...


I took a real break from doing anything related to school. Hooray!

I read The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt (recommended by E). I absolutely loved this book and thought the story encompasses who I am and who I want to be. So much to love. And by the end, I couldn't help but think Griffin House's, 'I Remember (It's Happening Again)' is the soundtrack to this book.

I went to the new shiny Apple store and I'll admit that somewhere, I saw hope in becoming a computer scientist.

I drove home listening to Bon Iver, Bon Iver in all glory while the mountains glowed as the sun was going down.

I read letters from Chardo and Corie, which made me really happy!

And...I was brave enough to share this little mini recording.

After the Storm (Mumford & Sons Piano Cover) by Lauren Sum


learning to love and be creative again

This weekend has been a million self-discoveries. After being productively creative (creating a game + editing film), being with people who know me best and a new friend, I feel like my true artistic self again. I have never felt so honest with myself. I am happy to say I am who I am. I want to spend a lifetime of creating, for the love of creating all things anew. Really. And this line from 'Learning to Love Again' and 'Brackett, W9' echoes all that pours out from my soul.


i wish everyday could be like this...

Hanauma Bay: there's actually parking the one time we don't have our snorkel gear.

Last weekend seemed beyond surreal and dreamlike, globetrotting a day in Japan and a day in Hawaii.

(p.s. I am finally done catching up on the blog in a matter of hours. Yay!)

Japan: Miho Museum {August 2011}

During my first semester in college, I took an intro to architecture class. We spent a day watching a film about I.M. Pei, his work on the Miho Museum and the bell tower at Misono (seen from the Miho Museum). The film made a lasting impression on me and I knew that I had to see the Miho Museum in all grandeur. The lighting, symmetrical geometry and the location was simply inspiring and a living rendition of the lost horizon.

Hawaii {August 2011}

North Shore: Laniakea Beach 
We love being with the turtles and swimming with them. One of the turtles swam behind me and breathed above the waters!
as a true Mat Kearney fan, I listened to his new album, Young Love on the day of release
Ko'Olina: the prettiest sunsets.
Ko'Olina: I want to live here.
I want to go sailing one day. This is the same place where I saw Pirates' Black Pearl.

Hawaii is truly paradise and home to me. I can never get enough of being a beach bum, exploring new beaches and the aloha spirit.

Melbourne, Australia {June 2011}

 Great Ocean Road: where I fell in love with lamingtons and The Twelve Apostles.
I want to live here.
Fitzroy Gardens: Cooks' Cottage. One of the grandest brick puzzle pieces.
Queen Victoria Market: a lively culture I will never forget.
I thought these bikes were really cool!
Federation Square
walking to the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV)
NGV: where I began to understand and learn from fashionistas.
The Forum: my favourite venue, ever. Where I saw Joshua Radin!
Melbourne Museum: where I studied artists' portfolios and the concept of real design.
 Rose Street Art Market: I wanted to take everything home with me. Thanks Jess at Truth.Be.Told for telling me about this place and being my guide to all things Australia!

Not pictured and noteworthy: Costco and Phillip Island's penguins!

Melbourne, I love you. Every year when I go to Australia, I fall even further in love with the Down Under. Someday, I want to move to this truly magical place.