The Morena Minority: Ay, Dapat Sayo Yung Natural Lang

What on earth does that even mean? Not only does that oh-so-condescending “lang” imply that you are somehow deserving of something less [read: because you are morena], but also what on earth does “natural” even mean in this context? As a way of dispelling this irritating mindset, I’ve decided to dedicate this blog post to red lipstick and different types of red lipstick, at that.

I think that anyone can wear red. There are just different ways to go about it.

For example, just take a look at Ella Eyre!
tumblr_n2mnp4QFGS1s3wp8ko1_1280….and Megan Young
megan…and Rihanna
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All it takes is taking a little bit of time to figure out which reds suit your skin color the best. Since what we’re aiming for here is broadening the spectrum of what we consider beautiful, I think it is time to accept that the only way we are going to do that is if we ourselves make the effort to stop thinking of beauty as something one-size-fits-all. It isn’t. Context is very important. Here are some things you do that might make things easier.

Figure out the base tone of your skin.

I’m sure you guys have heard of this before-that is, figuring out whether your skin’s color is cool-toned (pink) or warm-toned (yellow). Style Caster has a pretty cool article on the nitty gritty of it. I think the common thing that people say is that if you are warm-toned, you will look better in warm-toned reds (reds that lean more orange than they do blue).

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Coffee & Flowers: Build It And They Will Come

I am a firm believer in enthusiasm–I think it is contagious, and that if you are passionate enough about something great, other people will catch on sooner or later. Last Saturday, I was able to see this happen with my own eyes. The Beholders book launch was amazing, and I was reminded of why it was, exactly, that I started doing this whole MoarBooks thing. I won’t go too into the details here, because if we have a play-by-play of it on our blog, but here are a couple of photos and thoughts that ran through my mind while we were there.

Photos in this post are by Nico Pascual and Yza del Valle.

It’s important to know when you’ve done a good job. A lot of the time, I can be very hard on myself. Even if sometimes, things go wrong because of external factors, I think that a lot of it is my fault. And sometimes, even when things go right, I’m always just waiting for the other shoe to drop–this is horrible because it keeps me from enjoying the things that I work hard for. I realized that night that things were going quite well, and that in the end, all of the effort we put into making the launch happen were definitely worth it.

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The person in this photo is my friend Chubz, who without fail, goes to almost every event that we host.

You are who your friends are. This has its limitations, but for the most part I think that friendships are tied together by more than just what you have in common or what it is you like to do. Friendships are tied together by a sharing of vulnerabilities (as my friend Joelle is very fond of saying). While we met in college, Lia and I have only become close lately; throughout this whole process of making this book and putting it out there, I was really able to see Lia’s passion for her work and the accompanying fear of whether or not the work will be well-received. I came away from last Saturday’s launch with a real good friend. I’d like to say that along with shared vulnerability is also the need for shared joys and accomplishments. This was definitely one of them!

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Also, I was able to see how some of the oldest, most enduring friendships are so extremely special. Two of my dearest, oldest friends Joy and Marz were able to be there (although, sadly, we don’t have a photo together) and it really meant a lot to me. It’s incredible to have people who have known all the different facets of who you are. Keav was also there; I am one lucky gal. I realize he has been tagging along to these things since 2012! I am very, very grateful. received_10152783400958873

Anyone who says art is useless is stupid. After the program, I got to hang out with some of my friends at the exhibit on the second floor. My favorite pieces by far were from Mitch Shivers, an industrial designer and artist who gives vintage things new life. For example, he turned this old phone into a bluetooth-capable speaker. Whaaaaat. He also made a frog statuette into a speaker, and a cassette tape into an mp3 player.

I was also very happy that my friends from work were able to attend! Speaking of building friendships, and shared vulnerabilities, it’s really one hell of an experience to be able to share who you are outside work with people who you see on a day-to-day basis. Since moving jobs, I’ve met some of the most incredible and big-hearted people ever! [If any of you are reading this, thanks guys! :) ]

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With Freesia, Yza and She (L-R)

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With Freesia, Nina and She (L-R)

Build it and they will come. This was our first time working with Artery Art Space, and from the first time I headed over there and saw the “At the right place, at the right time” wall, I knew that working with them would be an incredible experience. While I know it’s important to research your market, and study statistics, I believe that a big part of success is being willing to build, to take chances. If you love something hard enough, it becomes almost impossible for other people not to see why.

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Coffee & Flowers: Can You Have Your Cake And Eat It Too?

IMG_20150323_182227Earlier today, I was having a conversation with my friend Joelle about having a crazy busy schedule–I am in the midst of planning a book launch, a beach trip, and revising a book project in time for a deadline (this Saturday, same date as the book launch). This was followed by a conversation about Stephen Hawking and The Theory of Everything–what we thought of Hawking’s propositions, etc. On the way home, I got to thinking about time and how it is the limit against which everything stands. Yes, you can work hard for your cake, but the question is: will you have time to eat it?

I sure hope so.