Henry Hargreaves: A Trip to the Moon…In Icing

Posted in antiques, craft, film, food, photography with tags , , , , on July 21, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Artist/photographer Henry Hargreaves has combined two of my favorite things: silent films and cake (well, technically cake frosting, but still). He recreated the iconic image from George Melies’s 1902 film Le Voyage Dans La Lune.

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The original:

Henry Hargreaves
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Kintsukuroi

Posted in craft, home, inspiration, japan, wish list with tags , , , , on July 20, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Kintsukuroi is a concept very close to my heart. Like these pieces, my body bears the marks of having been broken and put back together again (multiple times). Oh, the stories a few inches of skin can tell!

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I find these items breathtaking, and would very much like to create one or have one in my home. Upon reading about this technique and philosophy, I was reminded of a thrift store statue I purposely bought in a broken state (despite the urging of a well-meaning shop owner to opt for one in better condition); a angel holding a bird whose wing had broken off. Though no more than half an inch was missing, the entire meaning of the statue changed with that broken wing. The bird was not dallying for a moment in the midst of carefree flight as originally intended, it was being cradled, protected, healed by a benevolent protector.
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As I continue to move through my (still unspeakably slow and challenging) physical recovery, I rejoice in the lines on my flesh that saved my life and the metaphorical gold within them. I am not broken…I am Kintsukuroi, right?
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Take time to love the imperfect, the discarded, the reconstructed and overlooked treasures around you (or ON you!). As Leonard Cohen once sang “There’s a crack in everything…that’s how the light gets in.”

Agostino Arrivabene

Posted in art with tags on July 19, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Agostino Arrivabene has an extensive portfolio of amazing work. Tiny tendrils emerge upwards from his subjects, making them appear in the process of magical morphing.

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He adds texture to these blooming, grasping tendrils (they actually rise off the canvas due to molding powder). The effect is incredible; somewhere between hardened scar tissue, vascular systems and the glorious sprawling of roots…
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…or flowers and spirits luring their hosts into other dimensions, intertwining them with something invisible to the naked eye.
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Agostino Arrivabene

The Lysine Contingency

Posted in anatomy, craft, jewelry with tags , , on July 18, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

I was quite taken aback when I saw The Lysine Contingency, because I have, in fact, crafted almost every single one of these jewelry designs (right down to the settings and chains) on my own in previous years! Great minds!

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All of their designs are just my style. I think I’d wear absolutely everything in their catalog.
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Dinosaurs! I’d forgotten all about dinosaurs in my own hobby creations!
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The Lysine Contingency

La Popular’s “Corpse Bride”

Posted in death, macabre, oddities, wedding with tags , , , on July 17, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

I am basically going to reblog this morbid legend, because the source sites all the bizarre details quite well.

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For the past 75 years, a tiny bridal shop in Mexico has been the subject of some pretty crazy rumors. Tales of supernatural fiddling abound, with whispers of disembodied voices, mysterious cold spots, and even the occasional darting shadow seen from the corner of a visitor’s eye. But the creepiest rumor centers around a bridal mannequin sitting in the window; a highly detailed dummy that many say is a perfectly preserved corpse.

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The tale begins on March 25th in 1930, when the odd-looking mannequin was first placed in the windows of La Popular, one of the most well-known bridal shops in Chihauhau, Mexico. Almost immediately, the locals knew that something just wasn’t quite right with the figure. Before long, tales of the stunning mannequin began to spread far and wide, and visitors trekked from all over just to see the intricate details in the doll. From the individual wrinkles in the hands, to the real human hair, to the mesermizing gaze of her glass eyes, it was almost as if the figure was a real person frozen in time.

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Eventually, people began to notice the similaries between the mannequin, nicknamed La Pascualita, and the daughter of La Popular’s proprietor, Pascuala Esparza. According to legend, Esparza’s daughter had tragically passed away on her wedding day, victim of a Black Widow spider bite. Locals whispered that the beautiful figure in the window was, in fact, the embalmed body of Esparza’s daughter. More and more, the details began to make sense, and the townspeople became outraged. Of course, Pascuala Esparza formally denied the allegations, but by that point, it was too late – the legend was set in stone.

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75 years later, some have come to revere La Pascualita as a saint, leaving candles and offering prayers in front of the window. Some ask for good fortune, but most come to her seeking guidance in matters of love. Many brides even let Pascualita decide on their gowns for them, simply choosing whatever dress she’s wearing at the time they visit.

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So, is the strange mannequin really the preserved corpse of an ill-fated bride? Skeptics say no, pointing to the difficult upkeep when it comes to stopping a corpse from decaying, but those who have seen La Pascualita in person walk away believers… and very creeped out believers at that. After all, how strange is it for a store to keep the same mannequin for nearly eight decades, and shroud its undressing in secrecy?

What do you all think? The hands are indeed rather corpse-like, and graced with far more textured skin than any mannequin I’ve seen in the world. But…I’m not sure what methods could keep ANY flesh on a corpse over 80 years after the date of death.

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(Thanks to Steph for the link!)

Tricia Joy

Posted in art with tags on July 16, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Tricia Joy’s paints languid lovelies that catch the eye…

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Is it mere listlessness, or are they the carriers of lost stories?
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Sometimes, body parts are displaced and disembodied.
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…and strange things grow.
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Tricia Joy

Rogan Brown

Posted in craft, paper, sculpture with tags , , on July 15, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Rogan Brown has a beautiful series of intricately cut paper sculptures called Outbreak, celebrating the fractal patterns of the microscopic natural world.

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In his own words: I am inspired in part by the tradition of scientific drawing and model making, and particularly the work of artist-scientists such as Ernst Haeckel. But although my approach involves careful observation and detailed “scientific” preparatory drawings these are always superseded by the work of the imagination; everything has to be refracted through the prism of the imagination, estranged and in some way transformed.

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I want to communicate my fascination with the immense complexity and intricacy of natural forms and this is why the process behind my work is so important. Each sculpture is hugely time consuming and labour-intensive and this work is an essential element not only in the construction but also in the meaning of each piece. The finished artefact is really only the ghostly fossilized vestige of this slow, long process of realisation. I have chosen paper as a medium because it captures perfectly that mixture of delicacy and durability that for me characterizes the natural world.

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I always enjoy art that draws inspiration from nature, whether it is hyper-real, surreal or entirely fictional in a way that evokes recognition of natural structures. Rogan does a stunning job with this, doesn’t he?

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Rogan Brown
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