I love German Typography

We’ve been back from our Europe 2011 adventure for a month today. I’ll save my rant about the passage of time for another day.

I loved many things about Germany, but their typography stuck out for me. Here in Oakland, CA, the best thing about our street signs is that there’s an oak tree on them. The funniest thing about that is that oak trees are actually fairly hard to find around here… but that’s neither here nor there.

The typography is nice, clean and elegant on this Oakland street sign.  I love the ‘g’ and the spacing is nice…

…but somehow this German street sign has more even more elegance and nuance.  Perhaps it’s the perfect spacing between the letters or just the addition of the ß that adds that extra oomph I like so much. Continue Reading

The Story of My Four Deodorants

Awhile ago my deodorant ran out. I reluctantly purchased a new deodorant (when did they get so expensive??).  That’s how I wound up with one deodorant again.

About a week later I went down to Bakersfield with my friend Mike to go to one of our college friend Laura’s amazing parties. It rocked, but I forgot my new deodorant.

Luckily, we stopped a TJs along the way and I picked up another one. That’s how I came to have two deodorants.

A few weeks later we left for Europe, and again I forgot my deodorant!! What is it with me and forgetting my deodorant?? I finally broke down and bought some in a Schlecker in Berlin after borrowing my hosts’ deodorant for a few days*. Now I owned a total of three different deodorants! Continue Reading

When Does a Doodle Become an Art Piece?

Of all the dozen or so museums Will and I saw in Europe last month, the exhibit that keeps coming up is one that neither of us liked.  At all.

At the Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin we saw the exhibit Secret Universe, the works of Horst Ademeit.

Each day of Ademeit’s life, he would take a Polaroid of something that bothered him about the world and record his thoughts and complaints all over the edges.  He would number them, so he could keep track.

Horst Ademeit "5805" Archiv-Nr.: Ad 621 Mischtechnik / Polaroid 11 x 9 cm © Courtesy Galerie Susanne Zander, Köln

Only after Ademeit’s death, as the exhibit related, was his “body of work was discovered.” This body of work — these thousands of Polaroids lined were up, one by one, in numerical order forming a grid stretching through three rooms.

The ramblings of a disturbed man set out in the meticulous fashion in which he formed them for all to see.  This obsessive tracking of each day is something we have come to associate with psychosis or other mental illness.

Though we didn’t like the exhibit especially, we are still talking about.  It strikes me now as a wonderful glimpse into the pain of what it is to be human.  At least this man had an outlet for all the complaints that many of us swallow in the effort to be gracious human beings!

But at the same time, I don’t know if it’s art.  I wonder if perhaps it would be better characterized as anthropology.

But when a doodle become an art piece?  When you have thousands of them lined up side by side? Continue Reading

Germany 2011: A Journey in Photographs

Will and I embarked on a three-country European vacation last month. The first country we visited was Germany where we were hosted by our friends Spencer and Ann Marie. Thank goodness for friends!

The sheer number of amazing museums and other wonderful things to do in and around Berlin was fairly overwhelming, but did not preclude an awesome stay.

Continue Reading

Villa Nova I La Getru, Spain

When I went away to college, I showed an interest in photography by signing up for a Photography course.

My father lent me his old Nikon camera– those were the days before digital cameras.  He gave me instructions, many of which where to help with navigating the manual camera.  The one that has stuck with me, and, I believe, has had the most lasting impact on my photography, was to hold the camera vertical in relation to the earth, to look for straight lines in the subject and to mirror them in my photo.

I thank my father on this Father’s Day for these instructions and for that indispensable advice.  Coming from a long line of artists on both sides, I know that I have many to thank for my ability to find a subject anywhere, and to look for the best possible manifestation of that subject.  But I know that realistically without my father’s guidance, I would have been thrown into the deep end — kicking and screaming with no way out, and that instead, I was gifted an incorrigible eye for photos, for art, and for life.

With this in mind on this Father’s Day, Will and I embarked on an adventure on our first day in Villa Nova I La Getru, Spain. With a richly colored country side, and character-filled landscape, there was hardly a lack of inspiration.  These are a few of the unedited photos I took. Continue Reading

Awesome Product Alert: Katzenzungen

I was welcomed to Berlin by my good friends Ann Marie and Spencer, and this awesome welcome gift of Katzenzungen.

These milk chocolates are named after cat tongues, and somewhat resemble the actual body part. They don’t however, have the awesome sand-papery texture of actual cat tongues. I do wonder why they chose to leave that out.

They melt in your mouth and are delicious. At only 1,79 Euro, they’re a steal and I’m taking orders. Each box comes with 18 cat tongues to enjoy with or without your cat.

I am always impressed with how my fellow humans find inspiration in the oddest places! Continue Reading

I'm so grateful for

1. A European Trip

We’re headed to Europe this June, and I can hardly contain my excitement.

2. Will

He’s a really fun second half. He likes my cat, though he’d never admit it and most frequently refers to him as “the rodent.”

3. Community

I’ve been reaching out to the local community a lot over the past few months, and am so inspired and grateful for the connections I’ve made. I’m sure that running my own business will continue down the same bumpy road, but I’m glad for the company. Continue Reading