Art, Books, Dailies, Films, Personal, Writing
comments 3

Hello, it’s a Monday

Welcome, again, to another installment of my shitty titling practice, carried over from my LiveJournal days. I’m really trying—because it has become very hard to sift through old posts when all you have to go by are song lyrics stuck in your head at the time—but, I think you can tell how hard a time I’m having by the totally lackluster and, also pretty nondescript title.

But yes, trying.

Poems & perfume / 🍃 clean, sopy scent by @radioactivemushroomsitf — #CarinaReads2016

A photo posted by Carina (@presidents) on

Since I didn’t do The Sunday Currently yesterday (not that it’s a regular occurrence—overexplaining, again), on account of I was actually reading stuff, I wanted to talk a little bit about that. I finished two short books yesterday, a tiny, tiny Sappho volume—which was good, but I don’t think is a great overall representation, for obvious reasons—and a Wayne Thiebaud interview/conversation which totally inspired me, by way of making art for the act of making it. Like an exploration or something. I’m really not very trained with materials, especially working with mostly collages (so, found objects, paper, composition; not actual handling of mediums), so it was quite interesting to read about paint, how they handled it, and then wanting to try and learn about it by making stuff that no one has to see. If that makes sense. Different story, but something I thought about quite a bit, too.

And maybe it’s indulgent to have no sort of statement or political message or whatever, in the grand scheme of things, but there’s something exhilarating when you think about paint and paper and light, and what you can do with them.

The book is called Episodes with Wayne Thiebaud and it’s essentially a series of conversations with Eve Aschheim and Chris Daubert, and man, it really was pretty extensive. It’s mainly a transcript, but it was quite nice to read anyway. I loved his approach to art (being commercially-trained, and then living away from any sort of big “art locus” like New York later in his life) and the chismis about artists like Ad Reinhardt and Barnett Newman (as in suing because of name-calling, i.e. one likened the other to a prostitute), because of course I would enjoy that. (Sorry.)

Speaking of books, Penguin Books UK and Design Museum instigated #FontSunday yesterday, and you know, so many vintage covers were so clever. I wonder what happened to book design, on the whole… I mean, I still love a lot of book covers, obviously, and #NotAllBookCovers of yore were great, obviously, but it feels like there was something visually appealing and quite playful about old covers. I mean, I think so. Anyway, here are the covers I posted in participation:

I really can’t get over the Mendelsund ones for James Joyce. He blogged about that a little over here, but I had the pleasure of listening to him speak briefly about it (among other things!) about a year and a half ago when I went to the States. Petra asked if I wanted to hear him speak at McNally Jackson.


A creepy shot from 88 weeks ago. But Petra! And Peter Mendelsund!

I still listen to the conversation quite often (because I recorded it…) and hearing him shift careers well into his life from being a classical pianist—practicing from the age of 4!—to a pretty successful book designer (whose work I enjoy) is always an encouragement to me, she who is perpetually confused about what to do about life. In terms of my “purpose” (yech) and otherwise.

Also, this weekend, I saw The Blair Witch Project for the first time, and for a straight-up wuss, I was not as scared as I thought I would be. (Tintin will probably deny and say that I was buried quite low in my seat, but I will deny this.) The most horrific things about the screening were a) some post-Blair Witch occurrences that the producer, Kevin Foxe, disclosed, such as the actors not getting jobs when it aired because the distributors refused to correct their IMDB bios from “deceased” to, well, “alive and looking for work,” and of course, The Blair Witch Project 2, and b) it’s a Monday and I still feel fucking dizzy as shit.

I’d say that it still holds up pretty well, though perhaps as kind of a pioneering force in film and not so much a horror movie, though that’s probably because I know now that this wasn’t actually found footage, etc etc. When you try to make sense of it, the myth kind of falls apart on itself, but I think I would have been terrified for a good long while had I seen this as a kid. Though I may also have been too busy throwing up.

Do you think I want to be this kind of person? No, I do not. — #midori #mtn #mycapitalisthell

A photo posted by Carina (@presidents) on

I posted this photo a few days ago, and someone asked for my set-up. I actually still have a Hobonichi that I’ve given up trying to make my “planner” and is now a sort of diary/journal type thing for day-to-day things—when I remember to write in it—and a Sunday Paper Co planner for something else, but as for my Traveler’s Notebooks:

  • Black regular size: my newest one and has a blank Midori insert that’s more of a sketchbook/standard issue journal for when I’m feeling wordy and/or restless, and also a “big” Field Notes insert that is my general “bullet journal” for the year. I had been using a large Leuchtturm 1917 but I got tired of bringing it around, because it was heavy and had a lot of unnecessary information for day-to-day planning, so I transferred data out of that and into the FN, and that’s what I’m working with right now. This mostly stays at home unless I know I have time to draw and write aimlessly.
  • Brown passport: has 1 Field Notes insert (currently using a “reticle-graph,” which is a cross between graph and dot grid) that’s basically a catch-all notebook, and a plastic zipper case that acts as my wallet, pretty much.
  • Star Ferry/camel passport: has a Field Notes weekly agenda insert for forward-planning, and a Field Notes ledger insert as a daily bullet journal for tasks, both are from the Ambition edition from 2014

If you have any questions about this or anything else, let me know. I’m the type of person who enjoys very detailed set-up posts, but I don’t know about you.

I have a few things planned for the week, and I’m already dreading it. I think writing this is my act of self-sabotaging rebellion, because I did indeed have other things I should have taken care of, but you know. My anxiety has been off-the-charts recently, and I’d like to blame The Blair Witch Project for my prolonged nausea, but I know that it’s something else. I’m looking to see someone about it. Soon, I hope. I just have to get these other real life things I have to do out of the way.

  • Drea

    I would love to see a very very detailed set-up post because I love stuff like that and I’m a voyeur haha. I use my traveler’s notebook refill (refill lang because I can’t afford the case lololol) as a “highlights of my day” keeper, and my smallish moleskine starbucks for daily gratitude lists. This is what works for me right now. I’m kinda thinking about keeping a bullet journal but knowing myself and my short attention span, I don’t think that would work for me.

  • strawberryoes

    Oooh, that art books sounds interesting. If nothing else, I could use something that makes me want to paint some more. I’ve been absolutely terrible about making and creating, despite missing it like mad. (I’m weird, what can I say).

    I sort of have midori envy right now, but just looking at those things is stressing me out over what I would use them for and how I would use them and just – gosh. Writing things down really helps me, but sometimes I wonder if it doesn’t perhaps also make my life more complicated :P I have so many notebooks going at once, it’s a mess! *is forever trying to work that one out*

  • Those notebooks are so pretty. I’ve always found myself wanting one but I know I won’t be able to use it because I’m not artsy or creative enough. :(