Photography, Travel

Giving Thanks

Wisdom Tree
We couldn’t have asked for a better day!

This Thanksgiving my boyfriend and I spent the morning hiking to the Wisdom Tree on the Cahuenga Peak/ Mount Lee trails. I’ve seen the “Wisdom Tree” watch over the valley for years now and I figured it was high time we go and pay it a visit. You can see the tree perfectly on my daily route, and I’ve heard from several people that “when the time is right” you will go and visit the tree. The weather has been pretty toasty lately, but Thursday morning was nice and cool…a cold front was making its way through the area. I had the day off work, so we left pretty early on in the day.

viewofcity
Look how steep that hike is! I believe that is the Hollywood Basin down below.

According to legend, it’s the only tree that survived the devastating Hollywood Hills Fire in 2007. It’s over 1,000 feet in elevation, and most of that ascent is within a very short distance. I’m in decent shape and I got pretty winded on the way up!

City in Distance
You can see downtown off in the distance. Beautiful.

The hike gives you an incredible view of the city. I really wish that I had taken this hike earlier…perhaps a right when I moved to the city? It’s an absolutely breathtaking view. I love, love, love Griffith Park, but this was one of my favorite outdoor adventures in LA. The main area of Griffith Park is perhaps a little more versatile and a little easier (you can drive or ride your bike many places within the park and it is right by my apartment!), but you can’t beat this view.

hollywoodsign
The ridge and a tiny peek at the Hollywood Sign in the distance.

You can even see a little corner of the Hollywood Sign in this picture (right in front of the radio tower). Sadly, this is the closest I was able to get to the Hollywood Sign in the years I lived in LA. I’ll have to go back and visit so that I can see the sign up-close!

After the hike we, of course, had some delicious foods that I prepared for my boyfriend and some of our friends. Nothing fancy (Chicken, rice, potatoes, tofu and, of course, pie.) But we were quite hungry after our workout, so a big Thanksgiving Dinner really hit the spot.

New Artwork, Photography

Follow Pink Toe Press on Instagram!

polaroid

Want to get quick updates from me and my studio Pink Toe Press? Then follow @pinktoepress on Instagram! A fun and easy way to get quick inspirational photos of new works and new products that are available AND get first access to sneak-peek photos of works in progress. I try to update my Instagram several times a week and am working my way up to daily posts!

Photography

Stanley Kubrick at LACMA: Various Works

Continued from a previous entry:

A CAM
“A Cam” from Barry Lyndon

To say that I had a great time at the Stanley Kubrick exhibit at LACMA would be a gross understatement. The volume of things…of props, costumes, posters, production artwork, was unbelievable. There was a huge wall full of original theatrical posters (one of my favorite things there). Next to that was all manner of camera equipment along with scripts from Lolita, signed letters from famous actors… the list goes on and on. The exhibition was engrossing; I could have spent days there.

From LACMA’s Website

By featuring this legendary film auteur and his oeuvre as the focus of his first retrospective in the context of an art museum, the exhibition reevaluates how we define the artist in the 21st century, and simultaneously expands upon LACMA’s commitment to exploring the intersection of art and film.

The exhibition featured some of Kubrick’s earliest works including some short films that I hadn’t even heard of before. And, of course, all of his classics. This post features some of the incredible artwork from several of his various films:

Lolita Poster

Unfortunately, I did not get a chance to photograph more than just the poster from Lolita. Many of the props and artifacts from the film were under glass and difficult to access and photograph.

So let’s begin with A Clockwork Orange:

Clockwork Orange Poster
One of my favorite takes on the classic artwork.

A Clockwork Orange
Ticket information and the classic movie poster.

While the film is a little violent for my tastes, I do enjoy the film. I am especially fond, however, of the poster artwork for the film. It’s very iconic.

Milkmaid

And one cannot forget some of the film’s most memorable props.

A Clockwork Orange

Down to the last detail…

One of my favorite Kubrick films is  The Shining. This is, of course, the film I have seen the most times. They had some excellent prop-work from the film, but my favorite piece was this (of course):

The Shining
The Typewriter Jack wrote his manuscript on

Close up of Jack's Manuscript
Detail shot: …all work and no play…

The next film on our list is Barry Lyndon. While I haven’t seen this film yet, I am tempted to if only because of the stunning poster artwork.

Barry Lyndon Poster

I hear that the film was shot using special cameras an mostly natural/non-electric lighting and was incredibly innovative for the time.

Barry Lyndon Photographs
Incredible production photographs.
Barry Lyndon Photographs
Incredible production photographs.

The cameras that were used in the filming of Barry Lyndon were specially made or modified to work with natural lighting and candle light as their main source of lighting. I cannot even imagine where they began with this endeavor.

A CAM
A Cam from Barry Lyndon.
A CAM
A cam from Barry Lyndon

In contrast to the technical advances that made this film possible are the extensive notes that Kubrick took relating both to Barry Lyndon and the film concept that came before: Napoleon. The following photographs illustrate the depth and bredth of research that Kubrick poured in to (just one of!) his films. I don’t even have my computer files that organized, much less thousands of little notes.

Barry Lyndon Files
So organized and well-researched.

Each of those drawers is full to the brim!

Files
A close-up of one of the drawers.

Each drawer corresponded to a specific point in time. Each color tab was related to a specific character, person, or group.

On the subject of films I have yet to see, next comes Spartacus. I have seen bits and pieces of the film over time, but never in one sitting. That being said, I am still amazed by some of the preproduction work from the film. This includes storyboards as well as matte paintings, which are quite impressive in person.
Spartacus Storyboards

Storyboard Artwork for Spartacus

Spartacus Matte Painting

The areas in black are to be filled in with live-action.

Last but not least comes the masks from Eyes Wide Shut, one of my favorite Kubrick films. These were a wonderful surprise in one of the last rooms of the exhibit. Look at the amazing case that they are being housed in too!

Eyes Wide ShutMasks from Eyes Wide Shut

Events & Shows, Photography

Stanley Kubrick at LACMA: 2001 A Space Odyssey

0posters_all

To say that I had a great time at the Stanley Kubrick exhibit at LACMA would be a gross understatement. The volume of things…of props, costumes, posters, production artwork, was unbelievable. There was a huge wall full of original theatrical posters (one of my favorite things there). Next to that was all manner of camera equipment along with scripts from Lolita, signed letters from famous actors… the list goes on and on. The exhibition was engrossing; I could have spent days there.

From LACMA’s Website

By featuring this legendary film auteur and his oeuvre as the focus of his first retrospective in the context of an art museum, the exhibition reevaluates how we define the artist in the 21st century, and simultaneously expands upon LACMA’s commitment to exploring the intersection of art and film.

The exhibition featured some of Kubrick’s earliest works including some short films that I hadn’t even heard of before. And, of course, all of his classics. This post features some of the incredible artwork from 2001 A Space Odyssey.

02001_space4
Theatrical poster (I want this in my house!)

02001_space1
Brilliant write-up about the film. Is this from a magazine?

2001 A Space Odyssey
My favorite piece of artwork from 2001 A Space Odyssey

I believe that the most mind-blowing work at the Stanley Kubrick exhibit was the pre-production artwork for 2001 A Space Odyssey. In close second were the practical effects and costumes from the film. They were amazing. The special effects from that film blow many contemporary films away… and the fact that everything was done in the 1960’s using practical effects: painting, models, and not a computer in sight, is absolutely incredible. I’m not convinced that these artists were not time-travelers…

Preproduction/Storyboard artwork for 2001 A Space Odyssey:

2001 Concept Artwork
Storyboard artwork for 2001 A Space Odyssey

Control Pit
Storyboard artwork for 2001 A Space Odyssey

Can you believe that they painted this in the 1960’s?

Laptop Computer
Storyboard artwork for 2001 A Space Odyssey

This looks like my Dad’s work laptop circa 2002

These incredible paintings are Concept artwork of the visualization of outer-space…and what they thought it looks like/could look like beyond the stars:

Concept Artwork from 2001 A Space Odyssey

Concept Artwork from 2001 A Space Odyssey

Concept Artwork from 2001 A Space Odyssey

Concept Artwork from 2001 A Space Odyssey

Concept Artwork from 2001 A Space Odyssey

Concept Artwork from 2001 A Space Odyssey

Model Fuselage
A tiny model of Discovery’s spinning fuselage.

And a tiny model of Discovery’s spinning fuselage. I really wanted this model to be functional/spinning. Can you spot a tiny astronaut Frank Poole?

Model Fuselage
A tiny model of Discovery’s spinning fuselage.

Hello!

Not to be shown without its detailed blueprints, of course:

Blueprints for model fuselage
Blueprints for the tiny model of Discovery’s spinning fuselage.

And, finally, photographs of the space suits that astronaut Frank Poole wore in the film. They are incredibly detailed and look much like REAL spacesuits. They truly are incredible.

Space Suits

These look like you really could wear them into the vast void of space…

Other amazing props worth mentioning were the ape costumes from the beginning of the film. They were very lifelike and had interesting mechanisms inside to allow the actor to move the ape’s mouth. Also, some furniture from the space ships and the interstellar flight attendant’s accessories.

Stay tuned for more artwork from the show…

3-D, Artwork, Embroidery, Events & Shows, Fiber Arts, Jewelery, New Artwork, Photography, Sewing

Something Old, Something NEW

I’m creating in HIGH GEAR for the Renegade Craft Fair this next month. I’ve been making lots of new things and new versions of old favorites. Here is a selection of some of the pieces and products I will be selling at the Fair!

Art on Display

Some of the artwork that will be available at the Renegade Craft Fair LOS ANGELES:

Everything shown is made by Page Redford and is made in Burbank, CA.

From Top to Bottom:

Vinyl Letters: Hand painted letters on old vinyl records!

Paper Pendants: Necklaces made from paper!

Pin-Back Buttons: Assorted designs including retro, original artwork, patterns, vintage ads, and more! Available individually or in 2-packs or 4-packs!

Embroidery: Assorted designs and sizes. All awesome and HAND SEWN!

Postcards:  Assorted designs, available in individual or multi-packs

Greeting Cards: Assorted designs, sold with envelope in a clear pack.

And now for my NEWEST products, the ButTONES!

ButTones Pin-back ButtonsPin-back buttons inspired by the Pantone paint chips. Fun colors with fun names that you can match to your wardrobe or favorite bag. Various colors…I’m rocking the “Dolphin Orange” as I type! Soon to be available in my ETSY SHOP and at PINKTOEPRESS (dot) COM as buttons and soon to be made in to magnets for your fridge or locker (or car!). They will also be available at the Renegade Craft Fair. :-)

Photography, Scooter

NEW SCOOTER!

As you may have read in an earlier post, my beloved Il Bello scooter has been on her last leg for a while. Ever since my first day at the studio, actually (I was in a small accident. Turned right on to the road the studio is on and the road was wet from some construction. That combined with someone turning left from the opposite lane as I was turning caused me to turn too fast, especially with the wet, muddy road. I took a spill with the bike but was “safe”. I hadn’t filled her up with gas, so the tank was low and didn’t overflow, but the handlebars got off-kilter and I believe the fall (which was on the engine side) hurt the engine. Because a few months later, despite repairs, the engine kept cutting out and eventually got to the point where riding her was quite dangerous. Repairs were expensive, my position at the studio was looking up, so I decided to spoil myself!

AND HERE SHE IS:

What a pretty face!

Now, the Stella Scooter is a sexy little number made by the Genuine Scooter Company.

She is a 150 CC, manual transmission beauty with a metal body and a bit of pep. I’ve ridden manual cars, motorcycles, and ATVs before, but I’m newer to the manual scooter transmission. I’ll be sure to keep y’all posted as to how that goes. I know it’s not art-related, but since she’s so pretty, I decided to make an exception.

My new scooter in the foreground and my old scooter in the background.

*If i get the cash, maybe I’ll have the old scoot fixed up. I wanted to trade her in, but the

Dealer said they wouldn’t take her since she’s Chinese. Whatever.

Graphic Design, Greeting Cards, Photography

Retro Happy Birthday Card

Nothing says summer like a trip to the  fair or, if you’re near the beach, visiting the pier. I especially like taking a ride on the Ferris Wheel. Living in Los Angeles, I like visiting Santa Monica to see the pier; taking a shot at the arcades, riding the roller coaster, then taking a spin on the Ferris Wheel, looking out onto the beach. As fun as the other rides  are, the Ferris Wheel is my favorite; you get a great view of the ocean and the city.

The photograph on this card was taken on a recent visit to the pier, and I think it makes a splendid card. The colors are fantastic.

Graphic Design, Greeting Cards, New Artwork, Photography

Card for New Baby and New Parents

It’s almost Father’s Day. I was inspired to make this card by my friends who just had their first baby. Congrats to them and their little boy!

Ever the defector, I decided to make this card without the traditional blues and pinks that seem to dominate the baby card market. I was never one for pink and frills when I was young, even as a baby; I kept that in mind with the colors of this card. This card was designed so that it could work for a girl or a boy.

Photography, Travel

Trip to Guatemala: Visiting the Mayan Ruins

The Last day we were in Guatemala we visit the Mayan Ruins of Iximche. They are located about an hour-or-so outside of Guatemala City. Our earlier flight was canceled or delayed, so we opted to visit the ruins before heading to the airport for our evening flight. We had a wonderful time seeing the ruins. We hired a young man who is knowledgeable about the ruins. Our contact at the company who went with us to the ruins said that he believed the young man to be of Mayan decent. Our guide gave us a verbal history of the ruins. I was able to translate most of it from Spanish for my boss to better understand the history of the place.

It was a  place full of memories. I took a number of photographs of the ruins, but these are my favorites.

We’re getting closer!

Almost there!

“Welcome to the ruins of Iximche”

Just outside the entrance to the ruins.

A model of the ruins as they once stood.

Before visiting the ruins, we stopped in their small museum.

They had a number of artifacts excavated from the site as well as this model.

It shows the size and scale of the city as it once stood.

IMG_3632
This poor fellow was not injured by the Spaniards, but by his own kin during a game of Pok Ta Pok.

In the far left corner you can see burn marks on some of the stone where the city was burned to the ground by the Conquistadors.

Entering the ruins. You can feel the energy of the place.

Temple in the ruins. There were a number of temples in the city.

One for the sun and one for the moon… and several others.

Close-up of temple.

Can you can see the burned rock at the top?

That is where the Spanish Conquistadors burned the (wooden structures of the) city to the ground.

“No climbing the structures”

The “Tree of Life”

Tree of Life:

This tree sprouted up from the ruins after the earthquake of ’76.

Our guide suggested that the seed had been buried in the ruins when they were destroyed hundreds of years ago, and that the earthquake made it possible for the seed to grow. It is the only tree of its kind within over 200 miles of the ruins. He also suggested that the Mayans either brought the seed to Iximche or it was a gift from far away.

0ruins15
Breathtaking.

An Altar

Circular Altar:

Many sacrifices were performed here. Next to this altar there was a small hole almost like a small well. Our guide said that the hole was where the “liquid offerings” were presented. Often the blood from this altar was poured down there.

The threshold into the unknown

Only part of the city was excavated. The man who started excavating the city passed away before further work cold be done…apparently there is not enough funding to continue. The further away you got from the entrance of the city, the more earth covered the rock. They said that over 50% remains uncovered!

Our guide said that the city was home to at least two “ruling families”. They were peaceful people and, he said, that ultimately lead to their downfall when the conquistadors came. They took them for friends and welcomed them. I’m not sure how long after, but they eventually took over the city, killed many of the residents, and burned it to the ground.  Our contact at the company suggested that had the Mayans in neighboring cities not been either too proud or too stubborn, they could have easily banded together to form an alliance and defeat the Spaniards. Unfortunately that was not the case and history happened as it did.

Photography, Travel

Trip To Guatemala: Art in the City

In addition to hundreds and hundreds of hand-painted signs on businesses edifices, there was a lot of cool street art in Guatemala. I really enjoyed seeing the various murals around town. It reminded me of my time in Barcelona where street artwork is more-or-less encouraged. There was a more tasteful graffiti there than in the states, and I think that Guatemalan graffiti (at least what I saw and photographed) is more like that. These are some of my favorite paintings and murals:

I really liked this combo. The Storm Trooper and Hobbes, or is it Tony the Tiger?
I wish this one weren’t so blurry! I love the grinning calavera.
Cool characters and tagging!

The way my camera exposed this photograph is pretty cool. Although unintentional, it works well with the artwork.

There are some neat characters here!

This painting was on the way to Antigua. I love the colors! I like that it is a playful painting too, a bright contrast to the (sloppy) tagging to the left of the kite.

A colorful kite. Who says graffiti has to be edgy and dark?

We passed this painting on the way to work every day. I almost missed the opportunity to snap a photo of it. Fortunately we got stuck in traffic on the last day and I was able to get a good photo. “Soft” had work all over town. I am not sure who the artist is/was, but they are very prolific!

My very favorite.

This was my favorite “soft” piece, though. I really like the colors of this last photograph.

Stay tuned for my next post: MY TRIP TO GUATEMALA: A TRIP TO THE MAYAN RUINS!