art experiments

art experiments: color and light

a little under a year ago, 

back in december 2011 

 i went on a photo shooting expedition

to my friend bill's house


we played with incense smoke and projectors

color and light


i took almost 800 photos that day,

so getting around to cropping 

and editing them

 like i had envisioned,

 took a long long time. 

i sat down today and made two albums.

culled from the hundreds - a cut of only 29 images.

that's pretty ruthless editing in my opinion.

so i hope you enjoy 

take time to view them big and on black.

picture them super large scale.

and enjoy the little gif-style movie

i made, too!

it was for showing you the smoke, and how fun it was 

to lean in, shift the focus, watch the colors transition

and snap snap snap snap.



p.s. if you click on any of the images below,

you can view them in lightbox

(big & on a black screen!)



art experiments: secret garden

secret garden

secret garden by laigrai


i've been reading the secret garden.

i happen to own this beautiful copy.

it is embossed and lovely,

and believe it or not,

this is the first time i've read the book.

it is a pure treat

to have springtime unfolding

in the pages beneath my fingers.


this morning, i finished the book.

and i recorded a little moment to share with you.

consider this little paragraph.

which made me smile, and f e e l

like i had stumbled into happiness.

as story time, with lai grai.


secret garden by Laila Grainawi

enjoy! <3 laila

magic in the morning light

one day i awoke, to the sun streaming past the corner of the curtain, and dancing right in front of my eyes. i've always marveled at how some photographers can capture such amazing little hexagons of light (some call them/it 'bokeh') and i never understood how to make the light flares appear.

so i jumped up, grabbed my camera and laid back down to snap up some pictures of what seemed like 'magic in the morning light' ... but perhaps are really bits of wool and dust! haha, enjoy!    <3 laila


art experiments: from the market

i've recently been inspired by trips to the farmers market, 

and seeing beautiful vegetables with stalks and dirt.

they've been inspiring my meals,

but also my color palettes...

first, i used them as photography props- 

attempting to capture their dry skins, peeling-

their wispy stalks and roots...


then, i got out my brushes.

setting a scene.


 red and white onions, patterns playing 

on both the paper

and the palette


long tendril-like stalks dance across the page. their shadows dance too.


trays of paint, there's nothing i enjoy more.

the still life brings me happiness, for sure.

but so does the simple way,

the color moves in the water.

creating rivers and tracks. pooling into each other.

i think of this palette of paints at every dye session-

and i often paint

to remind myself

how colors mix

and you can be surprised

when green melts into rust 

and you think- that is   




i love watching 

          the brush strokes 

         while they are still wet and obvious. 

the speckling of the scale, 

                    the texture of the paper. 

layers upon layers. 

    the lightest drop of pigment, gentle splatter.


i love seeing the entire image emerge. from water. 

each time it is magical. 

i painted with watercolors as a child ...

the long red skinny container- filled with a rainbow of possibilities 

and a rough black haired brush,

as if, they didn't want you to feel the paint sliding across the page,

and think

there's a true beauty in this

both my paints and my brushes have evolved,

 i will never stop loving the simple pleasure of it.


taking items, as simple as onions

and as perfectly worn as a vintage scale.

and trying my best, to see them onto paper.

but without pressure, nor worry, just for the pleasure of it.

feeling the ink spread, and admiring the crisp of the onion 

and the pockets of pooling color. 

painting and photography

  help me to 'see'

remind me to really look

(and enjoy)

at the smallest moments.



and just for fun! 


a little recipe i've been making. super simple. 

i just toss some freshly chopped onions in a pan w/ olive oil,

add slivers of garlic + rough chopped kale / collard greens / mixed greens 

(ideally fresh off your farmers market stand!) 

and salt + fresh ground pepper - to taste. 

at the end, i like to cube up some mozzarella for a lil bit extra oomph!

really tasty- really fast & easy!


i'm headed to the market tomorrow, so who knows what will bounty will be harvested!

i'll try to share some more pictures and adventures soon. :)

until then, what little pleasures are you enjoying?