A Collection Of Inspiration For The Art Lifestyle

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Jan 7, 2015

How I Maintain My Senegalese Twists

I love my hair in twists. It's the best and easiest thing that has happened to me in my natural hair journey. In college, I wore my hair in kinky twists, much shorter and light brown. This is a whole new experience that has resulted in me being very happy that I don't have to worry about keeping up with my hair all of the time. 

While in the twists, I wanted to make sure my hair wasn't just drying up, so I put together an easy regimen to maintain my Senegalese twists. I've had them in for a little over two weeks now. Daily I have been spraying my hair with some leave-in conditioner. A little on the roots and down the twists about halfway. 

The leave-in conditioner that I am using currently is Creme of Nature Argan Oil. It has some strengthening properties and I wanted to be sure my hair could withstand the weight and movement of the twists. After I moisten it with the leave-in, I spray some of this sheen spray over it all to keep it with some shine and flexibility. After doing this, I truly feel like I have a healthy situation going on up there. 

I try 95% of the time to sleep with my satin scarf wrapped over my head after I bun it. After about two weeks, I felt like I needed to refresh my hair. It was looking a little worn and didn't have that fresh look to it. With these twists in particular, they look best super fresh. So I took down one twist at a time and rubbed on a glob of this Pantene Natural co-wash conditioner right onto my scalp at the root of that portion of hair.

I slide the conditioner down to soak the rest of my hair while also dabbing on a bit of Argan Oil Eco Styler Gel at the root. Afterwards, I spray the section with a little sheen spray and retwist. Such an easy situation. I am in love! I considered that to be my wash. Once I got the conditioner soaked in, my hair began to curl up, and I did a super quick detangle before retwisting. And that's it! Super happy I am. :) I'm so lazy when it comes to hair it's not even funny at all. But this right here...this is hair paradise y'all. 


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Nov 12, 2014

Sakile's Hair Routine for Full Length Retention

Co-wash Stocking Cap Treatment Routine

My darling younger sister, Sakile (Sah-key-lee), has a wonderful hair routine that pretty much results in almost 100% length retention, but the only thing is that you need to be able to casually wear a hat or some sort of head covering most of the time. I would say this is great for college students and anyone who isn't required to wear their hair out every single day. This honestly could work even if you have a weekend off. The reason why this retains all of your growth is because your hair stays moisturized and full of conditioner a majority of the time. She often says after she takes her hair down, she is amazed at the amount of growth. So here's the routine...

Before: Usually already twisted (flat or two strand)

1. Wet hair with warm water thoroughly.
2. Lather in excess hair conditioner
 Aussie Moist- for silky curly defined
 Hello Hydration- holds in moisture
 Tresemme Naturals- dryer
3. Scrub, then rinse out 1/2 to 3/4 rinsed out
4. Reapply heavy handedly
5. Detangle during the styling session, not during wash. Hair should be overly saturated with  conditioner.
6. Leave twists in 2-3 days with a fitted stocking cap on at all times (knee high)
 Two days for lighter conditioner, three for heavier
 Feel free to use deep conditioners, but note: deep conditioners will produce lots of falling residue, so  it's more for hair health and growth, not styling. If using deep conditioner for styling, then use olive  oil to cancel out the residue visibility.
7. Repeat

I took this picture of my sister last month around her birthday. She got her hair straightened. Amazing growth and amazing health. Her routine is a keeper. I have implemented it into my routines as well. Since my job doesn't permit wearing a hat over my stocking cap, I can squeeze this routine in the second half of the week since I work part time. Sakile keeps her hair saturated with conditioner in flat twists under a stocking cap under a hat. When it dries, she may take it down and wear her beautifully defined curls and then start it all back over again. She recently has been going to the Regency hair school to get her hair pressed for $8. They do a fine job and she can wear it straight to enjoy her length. My sister has thick healthy strands of hair and she did a big chop about a year and half ago. Not bad right? 

Nov 6, 2014

35 Shots of Autumn

Fall is my favorite time of year. There is just something about the temperature range, the color palette of the sky as the sun continues its rounds, or should I say as the earth continues its revolutions. It's so interesting to ponder the idea that every single day, we look up and watch the sun move but it truly is stationary. It doesn't rise and it doesn't fall. The earth does all of that as a result of the sun's incredible power. Back to the point, I love Autumn because of the intense series of changes the trees go through. This year in particular, the season has sparked a lot of reflection and meditation on life, my life and the world around me. Very powerful stuff going on.

This is a shot of a piece of wood weaved within a fence that I came across.

My darling trees, they are so breathtakingly beautiful to me. I will never get used to them, as I will never get used to the sky. Always changing. I am so connected to the sights of the earth. It gives me great joy. I love seeing how some trees begin to change leaf colors before others. I love seeing how different trees change to different colors. Some trees go through a series of shades while others remain bright yellow the whole time. 

I've noticed that when the leaves begin to fall, they fall from the top first on certain types of trees, leaving them sort of balding directly under the point of the sun's highest and most powerful position. There are leaves that get eaten to bits while still attached to the stems. And then there are the pines...they don't change much at all. They have no leaves to fall. They remain. 

I stood under a huge bright yellow tree and found a bird's nest that seemed to be abandoned. I am looking straight up. 
There are many trees whose nests get exposed as a result of the falling leaves. I find this to be amazingly beautiful and astonishing to see these homes built and now in plain sight. They are everywhere! Also, the exposure of the branches are wonderful. Every tree has a different structure underneath its leaves. I'm head over heels in love.

I shot this photo a little earlier in the season at my father's house on the very top of his roof. Up with the treetops.

One of my favorite shots Through the Wire.

Sometimes you have to shoot at night with a flash to get bright and contrasty situations. 

Looking downwards in a sewer at the leaves. I couldn't get them in focus...but that's okay.

I loved looking for leaves that fell in strange places.

Another one of my favs. I liked holding the leaves to shoot them. This was by far the largest one.

Nature Coils

Skeletal Structures

A Sea of Yellow

The first Fall shot I took this season. Ironically last in line. Shot from out my bedroom window.


Nov 5, 2014

CB2 Lamp Love: Rosie Table Lamp

Scrolling CB2 as usual, I came across this beautiful lamp, the Rosie Table Lamp. I think it would be so cute on any surface. Lighting is a huge deal for me. It is just as important as any decor detail and necessary for atmosphere control. Lighting is what makes the difference between an amazing photo and one that is completely dull and lifeless.

Light is everything, and what better way to incorporate light than in a uniquely stylish way. I have done so many variations in light placement and strength, but I haven't yet been able to venture into the design of the actual lighting fixture.

I wish I could just own a light fixture company and help design amazingly unique fixtures, and don't get me started on these bulbs! My goodness I love the creative mind, as well as the engineering mind. CB2 really has some gems. 


Nov 4, 2014

Black Friday: To Shop or Not To Shop

I never really get a chance to take advantage of the Black Friday deals that come around once a year. I'm either at work or somehow it falls on a day that my bank account is blown out by other expenses. This year, that won't be the case, so I'm trying to decide if I want to join the rest of America in the race to the super deals. I had to think about this logically to weigh some of the pros and cons of me going, keeping in mind my personal preferences regarding shopping and people. So here's what I came up with:

  • Spend less on select Christmas gifts I was already planning on buying anyways. Prices will be cut exponentially, I'm sure over fifty percent on a lot of items. 
  • Only comes around once a year, meaning this would be the perfect opportunity to take advantage of. 
  • Might find other super markdown items that I hadn't planned on purchasing.
  • I will be able to buy more gifts with the money I have saved.
  • I know I shouldn't, but I'm sure I will find something for myself that I just cannot pass up.
  • Get to finally experience the rush and energy of super shopping with super savings.

  • Tons and tons and tons of people everywhere in the stores, taking up carts, taking up space, standing in long lines and fighting over television sets just a few inches bigger than the one they got last year. 
  • Being stampeded to death is a HUGE fear of mine. Which is the reason why I fear being in huge crowds like the ones you see at Woodstock or just really big open area outdoor situations. (If one person freaks, the whole herd morphs into chaos which equals me being flattened and immediately in the presence of the Lord, which is cool...but I really didn't want to die in that manner. I figured I would depart via assassination.)
  • Having to wake up super early or leave Thanksgiving dinner to stand in line for countless hours to be the among the first to get the best deals. 
  • Fighting, running, defending, cursing, arguing, maybe some cannibals.
  • PARKING.... 

 Black Friday Camping at Best Buy: galleryhip.com

The Verdict
I won't be attending Black Friday this year. I might be the one person who would pay to stay away from mass hysteria. There have been times when I have shopped at Marc's (yea I actually was able to make it to the ATM to get cash) and I've spent at least an hour in there. I remember walking over to the check out lanes, sizing up my options, and deciding that the lane in front of me was the best option. I had a full cart and I stood and stood and stood and there was so much chaos around me and the cashier had a problem which held up the line tremendously. 

Black Friday in Puerto Rico: latinorebels.com

So I switched lines, and then the line I moved from started to move and the one I jumped in now had a problem. It was so traumatic for me that I tried calling my sister for some moral support and she didn't answer, so I just left the cart and ran out to the car breathing hard about to lose my mind in anxiety. It was horrible! The same thing happened in the stupid Super Walmart. A full cart was abandoned after two hours of shopping and a equally long panic attack. So I might stay home and shop some cyber deals. Or maybe I should check out the festivities so I can get some of my own Black Friday photography done!


Holiday Spirit
On the topic of preparing for the Christmas season, I have a quick story about a woman I spoke with a couple weeks ago. I decorate and design stuff for a living and the other day as I was stringing up Christmas lights at my store when a customer walks up to me and says "Isn't it a little early for that?" Followed by an offended scoff. This is my third Christmas decorating and customers usually come up to me in anger anytime they see anything Christmas related. It's so odd to me why they are so upset. I usually smile politely or chuckle just to get them to walk away but this time I had to say "Why does Christmas make you so upset?" She looked back at me in a small amount of surprise and responded "Well, it's just that I don't have any money." 


And there we have it folks. Christmas is about money! And if you don't have any money, then Christmas sucks! I get it now. I understand why people want to stone me off my ladder every year. They hate anything that reminds them of what they can't have. To be fair, I can't be too disgusted in this type of thinking, as it is the world around us that saturates our minds. Most people are just victims to years of thought herding. I pray every person who has scoffed at the idea of the Christmas season can enjoy a warm evening in their homes, sipping cocoa or egg nog, listen to some jazzy Charlie Brown, and just relax into the warmth and joy of the season while remembering that this entire day at one point revolved around the birth of Jesus Christ, the savior to all...Yea.