Baby Elephant


So my mum surprised me with this little elephant a week or so ago, and it is the cutest, fluffiest little thing. My new elephant child. Here is our first family photo shoot.


It is a Jellycat "poppet" elephant and we are going to have some adventures together. I don't have a habit of naming cuddly toys. I don't think they need names to have full personalities and I usually refer to them as "my [animal]" instead of a name. Sometimes names seem to come along without me trying to think of them, but most of the time it doesn't happen. So for now this is a nameless elephant.


I will get it a tiny ice cream.


Then again, maybe I should make a special effort to name it. I also feel like maybe it is a female elephant. Okay, a name just came into my head. The elephant is named Lottery. Hello, Lottery. Not a nameless elephant.

1980s Japanese Synthpop & Post Punk

One main musical passion of mine is for '80s synthpop, and as an offset of this I have discovered a bunch of delicious Japanese artists from that wonderful world. Here is a nice selection of some of my favourites. Please enjoy these grainy music video screencaps I have provided alongside links to music videos.


MENU - ナンキンテリアでドテカボチャ

MENU are a really cool duo with a kinda cutesy plinkety plonkety sound and I guess you can see some of the wonderful playfulness in their sound that you find in modern artists like Kyary Pamyu Pamyu and Kero Kero Bonito. Sort of along the same lines but with less of a pop focus are Masakosan and Picky Picnic, who both lean towards a more experimental sound but still retain a healthy does of silliness (Masakosan are an all-girl Devo fanatic group so of course they're bound to be pretty silly in that particular sort of way). In any case, when I listen to MENU I feel like a toddler with a very delicious apple, or something like that.


有頂天(Uchoten) - BYE-BYE

Silliness will be something of a theme here because I am a big fan of Devo/Talking Heads style amusingly weird post punk bands. Uchoten remind me of my favourite NZ band, Split Enz. Both bands share a really entertaining theatrical style and again Devo comparisons are very possible, but I don't want to be too one note here! Devo are just really important to me and clearly, many other people.


ACCESS - MISTY HEARTBREAK

ACCESS are an adorable duo and are pretty much the epitome of synthpop, à la Howard Jones & OMD. I just love the pair of them so much. Their music videos are incredible and of course, quintessentially '80s. Most of all though, their songs are just amazingly catchy. Like my ultimate fave. SYNTHPOP. Both members have also had quite interesting solo careers.


REBECCA - Vanity Angel

REBECCA are essentially a straight up pop group and they are great. I really like this music video and the big rock-pop style of their songs.


P-Model - 2D or not 2D

The graphics for this video are beautiful (as the spooky skeleton above shows). P-Model are giving off a great Kraftwerk vibe here and I fully support it. I'm too distracted by this skeleton to say anything more worthwhile, but they're pretty great.

***

Other Japanese artists worth mentioning:
Also check out my last.fm tag for Japanese artists here, and an old 8tracks playlist here.

Diary: Ponytails


I've been feeling very outdoorsy even though usually the sun makes me want to curl up and sleep in a dark place for a thousand years. I feel like I have far too much hair on my head because it holds so much heat, so I've been tying it up almost all the time. It's a bit sad because I feel like I'm estranged from my own hair. I miss it but it's just too hot to have it down, not to mention that it's long enough to get caught on a million different things now. I'm very grateful to have strong and good hair bands right now.

I stayed at Elliot's over the weekend, but since I didn't take my diary with me I made list notes of Friday to Sunday to stick in later. I really liked doing it that way, though. It was nice to do something a bit different but it's also just nice to be freed from the diary once in a while. I can't believe it's covered 6 months already!





Tumblr Drafts: An Archive

I've kept some old drafts on my Tumblr for ages with nowhere to go as I didn't want to publish them there, but I'm going to share some of them here because there's all sorts of odd little snippets I've kept. I hope you find some of these saved things interesting!


A series of unpublished text posts:

"To be honest sir I fail to see how you riding a small dog constitutes a Miley Cyrus cover but I’m going to put you through to the next round anyway because I love your sequin jodhpurs" said Simon Cowell in a rare moment of jodhpur joy.

My love for you is like a long cucumber. Healthy, and suitable for many salads.

sometimes I like things on a website and sometimes I like things in my mind but it’s not very different either way

Sometimes in East London you just have to touch a willow tree. They call me the top Walthamstow willow tree toucher.

I am a moth do not touch me I can fly away very easily
I fear no human disappointment
I’m alive and hurrying

Spacelab  →  Anxious Heart

boydeath
bone baby
baby bones

A bubbling sugar nymph tiptoes  across the floss of a child’s newborn hair and flittering, crumpling light pushes through gaps in the blond. Jolted kisses are blown by a slightly bedraggled man just slightly jittering on the train platform, his breath visibly curling in the cold. 

ghost notes

remember when I downloaded a ghost?
That’s a torrent I’ll regret
the ghost hasn’t left yet
it’s 2 years later and every meal there he is
just looking at me
and eyeing up my pasta
and making spooky noises

uploads
12
blood
gallons
little wiggly line
drawing the cool s


I have so many blogs I’ve lost count
I’ve got one listing my bruises by size, colour, and suspected cause
one detailing how many strands of hair I leave on public transport
I have configured them electronicallt 2 re
one filled with grainy pictures of my bed at 4am
Blog liSt
footprints
from walthamstow to normandy
through puddles and mud and friday night vomit
every hair of his that’s touched my fingertips
colour coded by time of day and numbered by finger
reddened skin
through alcohol intake or injury
time recorded
intensity recorded
pain recorded (if applicable)
a blog listing all my blogs and when they were made
measurements of exactly how much hot chocolate i’ve ingested

Little Things


I thought I'd scan some of the things nearby. These badges are from my jewellery box. We have the beautiful Bash Street Kid, Plug (an inspiration to us all), tanuki Mario, Frank Sidebottom, a heart, and a Noah Lyon badge I picked up at the Whitney Museum in New York (it says "satisfied with life"). Also, my very important hair bands and some cute heart-shaped clips in pastel colours.


Here are 2 very important things - a small Sylvanian Families bunny and some pearl earrings. Extremely necessary.


And here is my Totoro purse, one of my business cards, and a note with a cute lil' kid drawn on it. Precious items, all of them.

Journal Progress


Here's some progress I've been making with my journal. I keep scraps of old things that I've made or journalled. So some of these things are old (sometimes I go through old journals and rip out the best bits and these often get reused or put somewhere new). Old drawings, old photos, old cutouts I still like a lot, and even old Oyster cards (the day my zip card expired was the worst - I miss those free buses).

This collage includes one of my favourite pages ever from Company magazine. A teapot is a perfect style icon.


These are also some old pages, with old drawings and collages. It reminds me how much I like cutting up fashion magazines. They are very fun to collage with. I went through a little phase of drawing myself wearing space costumes. And I always used to draw myself with a huge grin, too. It looks a bit menacing, actually.


This is probably my favourite set of pages, featuring old Oyster cards, test drawings (I was trying to figure out how sleepyberry draws things), and Blixa Bargeld. It's a good mix of things.


Most of all I just like to rearrange and reuse old things every so often because I suppose it's a bit like moving your stuff to a new home. It's a good opportunity to cut things out that you don't need or like so much and reorganise your old stuff. I find that really fun to do with journals too, and it feels useful, like re-sorting my memories, The cow picture is actually the card my grandad sent me for my 18th birthday. It has some limericks inside and I've kept it since then (I love cows!).


Sticking things in also kick starts pages really well, so it's a good way to get started. It throws me into journalling pretty effectively. That's one of the many reasons I keep a little treasure trove of scraps and drawings and various paper things. It also endears me to the journal itself quicker to have old things in there. It makes the journal an important continuation.

Chalkbook


I've dedicated a whole sketchbook to chalk drawings and it's more fun than I expected! It's quite cathartic really. I have always had this wariness of messy materials that never really set (like pastels and charcoal) because they just get everywhere and are hard to control. I find them kinda frustrating, but I like to retry things every so often and see if I can find a new approach to something that I don't like, especially also because if I have something like this I feel bad neglecting it. So I feel like I have to use these chalks up! Not only because they are here and I happen to have them, but because they were a birthday present and I know I can put them to good use!

Like I said in yesterday's scanner post, they are actually hair chalks, but there's no way I'll end up finishing them by using them on my hair. It's a fun thing to do very occasionally, colouring my hair with chalk, but I'm not interested in doing it often. Usually when I go out I forget about this sort of thing, so I'm glad they have another use. Making myself do arty things I sort of don't like or am apprehensive about is sometimes great because it expands my abilities I guess! You have to find the best way of working with each medium and sometimes I can hate one for a long time before I learn to love it.

This is definitely the most fun I've had so far using chalk or pastels, and I think I'm learning to let go and stop trying to control the mess. Work within the limits of a medium and you can learn how to enjoy and utilise it! I feel like a kid now (or like the adults who draw children's drawings for TV shows).


I started off making pretty landscapes because the chalks have so many pretty colours that reminded me of sunsets and dusky skies. I seem to have a strong like of drawing pink hills. Stick figures are the easiest thing to etch into my landscapes afterwards. I feel like stick figures sometimes really complement a very full, rich, colourful landscape. Not that the landscape is very complex, but there's something of a nice simplicity in using a stick figure here. Besides I just like stick figures a lot. I relate to them. I'm stick-like in many ways.


This spread is a continuation of the sky theme. I just wanted to do a nice fade from pink to yellow instead of a proper drawing. I really want to watch a hundred sunsets in succession now. They are the coolest things. One of the best things about being alive on Earth, I think.


After that, I deviated from pretty landscapes and drew the first thing I cold thing of. This is often an eye for some reason. I draw a lot of simple eyes. I guess they are a very interesting face thing. A thing that feels like it connects you to the brain. I mean, when you look at someone's eyes you can see something of their thoughts or feelings, just a little bit. Just a slice.


And this continued to sillier things. Simple things. All the colours lend themselves well to very simplistic drawings. Colours can be so emotive. That was what I was thinking here. Also a big stylistic thank you to Animal Crossing for making me want to draw lower eyelashes.


This is the first picture I drew in the book. A hopeful little drawing. Sunsets, a well as being beautiful, are this interesting symbol for hope and happiness. Why do films end with characters walking into the sunset? Why is that such a romantic image? I LIKE IT (A LOT)


Also, here is a little ginger-haired kid I drew to test out the chalk before starting in the sketchbook. Looking kinda grumpy and like she's wearing sleepwear.