Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Balboa Park Family Festival

A week or so ago, I volunteered at the Balboa Park Family Festival on behalf of the San Diego Museum of Art. Apparently they have a Family Festival every 4 months, and the theme corresponds with the current exhibition, which in this case happened to be the Kimono as Art: The Landscapes of Itchiku Kubota exhibition.

First of all, let me just say this exhibition was absolutely unbelievable. Beyond my already obsessive love for all things Japanese, and all things artsy, the sheer time that must have been spent by Itchiku Kubota to become a complete master of this trade is unfathomable. The Museum did a fantastic job of installing the kimono in an arc, which facilitated the viewer's eye around the collection from his 4 Seasons series. He actually died before he could complete his masterpiece, so now his sons have taken over the museum in his name and have vowed to complete it. The San Diego museum has on display the Autumn and Winter kimono, which numbers about 30 or so. I wish I had been able to take pictures of the collection, but if you haven't already clicked on the exhibition link, do so now. It's absolutely worth it.

My volunteering time was first assigned to the ink painting tent, where we passed out rice paper and demonstrated the Japanese style of ink painting and washing. Unfortunately, this totally cushy, easy, fun, sitting-down-in-the-shade job was replaced with helping James (last name ?) put together the giant paper kimono that was to be "unveiled" at the end of the festival. Basically people would paint their ink paintings at the tent, and then bring them over to us so we could attach them onto a giant paper kimono as an assemblage. It was hit or miss with the wind, but we actually had a great time despite major difficulties dealing with the paper tearing and a pretty hot sun beating down on us.

In the end, it looked something like this:

Okay, those are kind of terrible depictions of the final product. At the beginning, it really was a large paper kimono with sort of wing attachments flowing from the bottom. Since this made it pretty unstable and vulnerable to the wind, we had to add those at the very end. Regardless, we got so many ink paintings that it ended up being difficult to attach them all on the kimono, but we managed.

In the end, it was a pretty awesome day. There were Japanese drum dancers, kimono ceremony, origami folding, ink painting, and even a puppet show! Basically my ideal day. Plus I got to make a few friends and hang out with kids teaching them how to be crafty. Awesome stuff.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


MUNNY on the Run! from Kidrobot on Vimeo.

New goal- revamp this whole shebang. This blog needs a major facelift. New layout, more pictures, more emphasis on quality, perhaps weekly updates on certain topics like Toy Tuesday or something along those lines. No more "I Like Coffee!" spur of the moment posts (unless it's REALLY a defining moment in the day), and I want to take more pictures on my Nikon D40X instead of just my phone due to convenience. I mean, the phone is alright, but I'm excited to go camping in Idlewild this weekend and maybe get some good stuff going on to jump start this jam.

I mean, photography is the easiest, most immediate way to capture something beautiful! There's only thought, and very little action, to snip out a piece of the world to share with others. How can I be passing this up? Well, I know exactly why. It's bulky and cumbersome to just carry around for whenever the mood strikes. I need to talk to my grandfather (who is an insane photo enthusiast) about getting a small digital camera to just pop into my purse for everyday use.

Anyway, changes are coming. The winds are shifting and now that my weekdays are taken up by a real job, I'm going to start focusing on where this is going to take me and what I can do to continue to better myself as a person and as an artist. Yesterday I was looking at graduate school materials for Otis College of Art and Design in LA. LA would be a great place to go to art school, but I know that right now at this very moment I am not in the right state of mind to even seriously consider this very massive step. I need to get straight and get involved and get some stuff done to prove to myself and schools that I've got what it takes to go balls out. I've also put out feelers for learning how to knit. Just being able to do something with my hands, especially something where I could multitask and hang out or watch movies or whatever during would be great.

I hope my enthusiasm and zeal don't wane or turn into nothing. I have a realistic view of what I can accomplish right now with no money and no studio, but as long as I dig my heels in and plan accordingly, I think I'll be able to slowly but surely get on my way. Here's hoping!

Monday, November 24, 2008

expanding my mind

So I hadn't looked at, thought about, or even fathomed anything creative for probably a week. I always forget how lethargic and unpleasant that is. Then on Friday I got to work with color swatches and paints and it was just like drinking a cup of hot cocoa on a cold night. It was wonderful! Since I'm mildly OCD, I NEED to get some furniture to put in our "art room", because I know that I don't work well in a room that is not (un)organized by me. Working on the floor without any desk space is terrible.

Hopefully once I get some steady funds I'll be able to get some more start up stuff for making puppets and just painting. There are many debts I need to pay, but starting is the hardest part!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

new job

I did it, I'm a slave to corporate America! It's day 3 of my new job, and so far my brain is expanding at a much faster pace then I could have ever dreamed possible. While this is a totally new experience for me, I'm hoping it will lead to bigger and better things that make this 8-5, commuting, professional job experience all worth it. They showed me how to file things today! Egad. What have I become???

Behold, the kingdom of Post-It notes.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

reindeer dunny

Kidrobot, why must you torture me so? This 3" Dunny by Chuckboy is adorable, feisty, and a perfect holiday gift for the toy enthusiast. Oh, if only I had 10 disposable dollars! If there was a Kidrobot store in San Diego, I could kiss any and all money goodbye.

fat-bottomed girls.

I get really jealous when people my age or younger have a ton of awesome tattoos. Where are you getting this money?!?!? I want a sleeve too!!! How about following Obama's plan and share some of your wealth with me. I want to enjoy beautiful art on me before I'm too old to look cool. Well, youthfully cool. Old women with tattoos still look cool but in a jaded, cynical, biker-ish way.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

the delighted bite, and beyond

I've come to a few decisions. When I started this blog, it was dedicated to daily drawings and an eye on contemporary design and art from around the world. Anything I created or found interesting by another artist was featured and discussed. After a while, it's taken a turn into being just a personal page for me to talk about anything I wanted to. No boundaries were established, and it has dissolved into a place where I can just talk about what I like for any reason.

While I enjoy this freedom of speech, I've decided to split my blog into a few parts. Obviously, the first thing to go is the ever-present brunch discussions and culinary adventures. Don't worry, I've created a new blog that is currently being put together to talk about the weekly ritual. The Delighted Bite will be up and running shortly, so to anyone who enjoys discussing food, please be sure to bookmark this and keep checking back.

I'm also currently playing around with the idea of re-naming this blog. It really isn't a manifesto of any sort, and I don't even really like the word. There's a few ideas I'm kicking around, and when the right one comes along I'll know it. So be prepared for a new look around here. I might need to think about becoming more focused on keeping this strictly creative and not just an outlet to discuss my daily exploits, like Dooce. While I love that blog and sometimes it's interesting to read, I think it's important to set limitations to discipline myself and my reach of people.

This brings me to another idea, perhaps a third split into a real "blog". A blog about me, Beth, and the things I do every day. This isn't as interesting on a professional level, maybe, but a more personal look into my ideas and experiences for my friends and family to enjoy. I'm not sure if three blogs are the answer for me. I want to make sure I interest enough people and keep my blogging exploits to a reasonable level. If anyone has any comments, feedback, or cool name ideas, I'd love to hear them!

The Handmade Holiday

What: A New Juried Indie Craft Show in Richmond, Virginia that will exclusively feature the work of local crafters & designers.

Why: Buy Handmade & Buy Local this Holiday Season!

Who: The Richmond Craft Mafia, The Visual Arts Center of Richmond and some of Richmond's most talented indie crafters and designers.

Where: The Visual Arts Center of Richmond (formerly the Hand Workshop) at 1812 Main Street

Preview Party - Friday
December 12th from 7 - 10 pm
Ticket Info

Open to the Public - Saturday
December 13th from 10 - 5
Free & Open to the Public

How: Come on out and support local carfters and designers this Holiday Season!
Amy Weiks Jewelry
April Scott Kids
Avenue Handmade
Bee's Knees Studio
Claire McDermott Designs
Crystal J Silks
Erin Taylor Designs
Ernst & Thistle
Essential E Paper
Face Metal Design
Gabriel Craig Metalsmith
Gwen's Garden
Hearts & Needles
Hershey Is My Baby
Jackson Sage
Jude Glass
Keen Designs
Lark Studio
Lorcom Lane
Miss Pickles Press
Modern Atelier
Modern June
Moneky & Me
My Precious Studio
Nicole Lee Designs
oelle m.
Phil Barbato
Pretty Silly Things
Serious Whimsy
Sew * Ono Apparel
Shannon by Hand
Silver Tree Art
Solos Glass
Tasha McKelvey
Team 8 Press
The Cupcakery
Twist Style


day of the dead

I like Day of the Dead stuff. I like bunnies. I like drawing. This little number is just a weird take on things. I think it has promise.

Monday, November 10, 2008


I thought a zombie slime monster would be a fun subject.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

ray at night

In San Diego, they don't have First Fridays. What they DO have is an entire plethora of arts organizations at different times during the week, so basically it's like having First Fridays in different communities every week. Many of these I have yet to discover or attend, but the local one here is Ray at Night, which I guess started a few years ago. While it occupies a small amount of actual space, it seems to have a lot to offer.

Last night was my first night attending the Second Saturday event, and I didn't really know what to expect. I'd been into the Milo Shoes and Gallery before, but wanted to see some local galleries dedicated to younger artists or the contemporary movement. To be honest, the only one I really spent time in was 4 Walls with the Adapta Project, which was the work of Jorge Tellaeche.

This guy is the painter I want to be. Nature, color, free forms, and exploring the idea of using non-archival materials to achieve a sense of the immediate without an emphasis on longevity are all things that I've toyed with, but never mastered as he so obviously has. He works on wood, canvas (primed and unprimed), fabric (linen?) and he even had a shirt/dress that he had painted and embroidered. Just the layering work on his paintings were so intricate but maintained such spontaneity that my mind was blown. Really, after that, there was nothing worth looking at. We had some wine and left.

A promising first time.

The Mission North Park

Boys and girls, it is time for the weekly BRUNCH REVIEW! This week we actually had some friends join us for the monumental event which took place at the Mission in North Park.

(picture taken from their website)
We've been passing it on a daily basis for a few weeks now, and there is always a huge crowd out front. To me this means there is something worth waiting for. Today was no exception, but when I managed to fight through the crowds outside and in the lobby, I was pleased to hear that it was only a wait of 20 minutes. Brilliant! I expected it to be a pretty classic American brunch menu, with the normal eggs, bacon, toast, maybe with a few innovative omelets here and there, but I was pleasantly surprised. The menu was extremely unconventional, and it was described as "chino-latino", which I still don't totally understand but I could see the slant. There was a whole section for just Latin breakfast dishes, and a great drink menu. I guess there's a pretty serious espresso and smoothie bar happening. I toyed with the idea of getting a Blackberry Banana smoothie, but settled for a hammerhead (espresso in coffee) instead.
For my meal, I was torn between the Pappas Loca (Rosemary potatoes, grilled jalapeƱos, black beans, cheese, avocado, and sour cream, with the option of adding 2 eggs) and the Roast Beef Hash and eggs (Grilled Angus beef, horseradish cream, rosemary potatoes, and scrambled eggs.) Ultimately I decided to go with the latter, pictured below.

HOLY FREAKING COW. Normally you'd expect the eggs to be the main part, with a "side" of potatoes, but this was the exact opposite. Within 5 minutes of ordering, I was presented with an absolute mountain of rosemary potatoes, huge chunks of what said to be roast beef but tasted more like straight up steak to me, topped with cilantro, small onions, tomato, and horseradish on the side with 2 eggs (scrambled BEAUTIFULLY) and rosemary toast.
The potatoes were for lack of any other word, BOMB. Crispy on the outside, barely stuck together by the skin, but cooked all the way through with just the right amount of spices. The horseradish wasn't sinus-clearing, but the provided hot sauce was a superb additive. I'm mildly picky about how my eggs are cooked, and this scramble was the perfect amount of scrambled-medium to slightly soft (I like my eggs slightly sticky). Perfect.
THE TOAST! Oh god, the toast. Very few things make my mouth water like the promise of a great slice of toast. I didn't have to add a single thing to this. Incredibly tasteful, just bland (in a good way) enough to make it still seem like toast without going totally overboard and dominating the flavor of the main dish. A little horseradish was a delight to add, but not even necessary for the entire piece. Today I was not part of the clean plate club, and I have about half of it left. For $8, a totally filling, innovative, and delicious meal that I am looking forward to finishing later today.
All in all, I'd give the Mission two enthusiastic thumbs up. I see now what all the crowds were excited about.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

what do we want? equal rights! when do we want them? now!

California just passed Proposition 8 to ban gay marriage in the state, and seemed to shock people across the country with the idea that California is generally a front runner in terms of progressive legislation. Needless to say, Ashton and I live in what seems to be the Gay Capital of Southern California, so there was a huge backlash from the community today. Apparently in 2 days, 3 people came together and organized a march to repeal Prop 8. I had NO idea this was going on, so when we went out for our regular bike ride we came across a steady stream of people as far as the eye could see.

Well, being the curious citizens we are, we followed the rally down to a neighborhood park. It's interesting to see such a quickly organized gathering with such a stimulated response. I'm not going to totally get into what my personal beliefs are, but basically I think that if you believe in the Constitution- liberty, justice, and equality for all, then gay marriage is an absolute American right. BUT, if morality is your bigger concern, then that's an entirely different set of bananas. It's ignorant and discriminatory to stand against it without moral conviction backing your claim. I absolutely believe that gay marriage is the civil rights movement of our generation, and in 50 years we will look back and be shocked that this was ever even an issue. Thinking back, even Christian churches preached "separate but equal" and now would never even think that race should be in issue in any way. I'd be willing to bet that the rhetoric preached now will be swung further to the left preaching tolerance in the future. I guess it comes down to whether you think homosexuality is nature or nurture, but I guess it's something you can never be absolutely positive about. Time will tell!

Friday, November 7, 2008



my hair is at the awkward stage at the moment, but fortunately for my annual hair-growth vow i am penniless and have no money for food, much less a haircut. hair tips, consider yourselves safe for now, but i need to start seeing some progress here. i thought i would motivate them with a poem.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

c is for cookie

and cookie is for me!

Monday, November 3, 2008

brunch 11-2-08

This brunch proved to be an interesting one, having altered our course from traditional American cuisine to involve an ethnic flair. Ashton and I had tried to drum up interest in dining at Hash House a Go Go on 5th to no avail. We were also put off by the crowd of approximately one million people in front of it waiting for a table. While I feel this proves that their brunch probably is something, in fact, to write home about, patience is not a virtue of mine when it comes to brunch. We changed our destination to the India Princess, also on 5th, to sample the $11.95 brunch buffet with champagne included.

WOW. I haven't had Indian food in probably at least 3 years, and I've been skeptical to try it again; this is not due to an unpleasurable experience, rather the knowledge that there is only GREAT Indian food, and TERRIBLE Indian food. It's not a halfway thing. The only Indian restaurant in Richmond is a shabby looking place in Carytown that I've only heard unfortunate things about. I consider myself an adventurous eater, but not when the digestive stakes are so high.
I wouldn't consider myself a buffet enthusiast (contrary to the last two brunches) for several reason. First, I know the restaurant business, and I know that buffets are generally the last of the last, trying to get rid of everything possible to start the week fresh. Secondly, everything is just lying out, practically begging germs to just come and fester on them in the open air. Thirdly, everything remains in a constant state of slow decay, dying and dehydrating under heat lamps. Fourthly, in this case, the restaurant was almost totally empty, with only one other table of people in there.
Still, even with all the warning bells in my head, the smell and cost enticed me in, along with the promise of a cuisine I have been longing for for some time. Also, I had noticed a few nights previously that the dinner crowd was significantly fuller, which signified that good things were to come and leading me to the conclusion that while San Diegeans seem to love brunch, they might not be ready for such a bold detour as the Indian brunch.
I can't even begin to remember the treats that we encountered. Pretty much the usual spread of tandoori chicken, spinach saag, curry chicken, jasmine rice, and tofu chunks in a spicy red pepper sauce, etc. The waiter asked us if we wanted regular or garlic dipping bread, so of course we went garlic.
All in all, it was a pleasant and new brunch experience. I feel as though I've been proved wrong because this was not the most unbelievable experience ever, but it's absolutely worth a repeat trip for dinner, or some time when it's not a buffet spread. Would recommend enthusiastically.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


I've missed just sketching.

Great video

This kid definitely has upper management written all over him.