Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Star Wars Paper Snowflakes and OMG LEGO LORD OF THE RINGS

Today I discovered Star Wars paper snowflakes, and it felt like the last piece of my life just fell into place. There are those times in your life when things just feel right, and rainbows should start exploding all over the sky and you should start pooping glitter. I spent a slightly regrettable amount of time cutting up that bad boy on the left, using those crappy dull office scissors and a box cutter. Because, you know, I only use the best tools. That's why Boba Fett's lil helmet thingies look so shoddy. But I was determined. And shocked that I still have all my fingers and spilled no blood. But it's not too late, ho no. Perhaps tomorrow I shall try to tackle the stormtrooper shape and possibly end up finger-painting it with blood sweat and tears.

And then there's this little gem. Before anyone gets excited*, no this isn't a teaser for a LEGO Lord of the Rings videogame adaptation. It is merely for playsets. But anyone who thinks the videogame isn't on the way is a complete fool. I've been saying for years that they need to do this, and anyone who starts bitching that it "ruins the franchise" or whatever other garbage people spew from their faces is going to get sliced with an Uruk-hai scimitar. Main reason: Gateway for kids to get into the series. Letting LEGO do their fun little adaptations does absolutely nothing to insult the series. In fact, I don't think anything anyone would do at this point could ever insult the series. Maybe some kids are a little too young to watch the films or read the books. I think LEGO would be a great way to introduce them to the series, especially if (when) the games come out, since they are always great with co-op play. Fun for the whole family! But since we have to labor under the assumption that this is only for physical playsets, I'll just slowwwwly start putting money aside for a full scale model of Rivendell, assuming that's one of the options.**

** - If it's not one of the options, they'll be the next to die by Uruk-hai scimitar. OMG what if they did the bigger models as part of their LEGO Architecture series? OMGOMGOMGOMG JUST TAKE MY MONEY NOW.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Pictures for Non-Existent Walls

I'm on an art kick. The evidence is clear. Now my only problem is that I have no walls to put this stuff on. That's ok though, because I can just put all of it on my Pinterest so I don't forget about it. That's usually what gets me out of buying things. I'll say well, I'll just buy it later. Then I'll forget about it, which is a sign that it wasn't really necessary in the first place, right? But now I have Pinterest, where I can put EVERYTHING I COULD POSSIBLY WANT into organized pinboards for later purchase. Actually at this point, after all the shit I've added to these boards, I almost wish Pinterest didn't exist. But I digress.
The art I'm featuring today is by Jessica Swift, who is clearly suppressing a deep love for The Legend of Zelda, as there are a whole crap-ton of Triforces in the image above. I came across her art on today and knew I was in trouble as soon as I saw it. Colors everywhere. Exactly the kind of stuff I want to put in my creative room/office next year, which is where I'll write, draw, paint, play the damn flute, and have an entire wall made into a bulletin board. I naturally made the mistake of googling her to check out if she had a website, which of course she does, and it is filled with prints and iPhone cases and rainboots and calendars and SUNSHINE AND RAINBOWS AND BUNNY RABBITS. You can even get some of her original paintings for pretty reasonable prices. I can't wait to pick all of these prints out, have tubes and tubes and tubes coming in the mail, and plaster them all over my office. I'd also really like to have twine hooked throughout the ceiling with clothespins to hang pictures from. It's obviously going to be my favorite room, and I already get intense bursts of creativity just thinking about it.
Oh and one last print of hers that I'd like to share. I used to hate prints like this. Maybe I was just a miserable little puddle of darkness, but these inspirational text prints used to drive me up a wall. Now I cannot get enough of them. And I think I need one in my life, somewhere I will always see it. I've really been way too prone to insecurity and low confidence recently, and perhaps something like this hanging on the inside of the front door would give me a little burst of sunshine for the day. Even in my worst moments of worrying and thinking too much, this is something that I absolutely MUST try to remember:

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I Hug Trees and Have Opinions

Let’s start by reflecting on things that are awesome, just to put things into perspective.*
  • Coffee mugs with cats on them
  • My cat
  • Leaving work a minimum of one minute earlier than usual
  • Seeing a wild Aston Martin out in its natural habitat, almost crashing my decidedly less-awesome Honda Civic, and living to tell the tale.
  • Dave Grohl
  • Dave Grohl dressed as a woman
Anyway. Recently I discovered Society6, where hipster-folk go for hipster-y wall prints and cases for their iPhones and artists submit their hipster-y art for purchase. I’m like 40% hipster. I’m not ashamed to admit it. I hug trees and have opinions.**

I spent the better part of two days weeding out my favorite designs and putting them side by side in a file for comparison purposes. I started out with about ten designs, chipped away at them until I had four, and then made the big grand-daddy of decisions from there. Now, not only did I take a long and perilous journey of self-discovery, but I found a new artist to adore and add to my apartment d├ęcor pinboard on Pinterest.

This is going on my wall as soon as I move, along with my hand-drawn map of Middle Earth.*** The artist’s name is Valentina. Her art is everywhere. As prints, more prints, on clothing, bedding, iPhone cases, fabric, wall murals, pillowcases, probably on cakes or some shit, who knows. All I know is I want to plaster my walls with it. And sleep on it. And wear it. And eat it. Two more favorites:

One of Valentina's designs is going to be on my forthcoming new iPhone case which my pops offered to buy me for Christmas. I don’t feel like telling you which, and chances are it isn't even one of the ones I featured, so you know, use your imagination. Now if you’ll excuse me I have to back to pinning things on my pinboards for the apartment that hovers, torturously, just out of my grasp.
* - this put nothing into perspective, and looking back, served no purpose whatsoever
** - should be on a t-shirt in Helvetica font
*** - accomplishes the simultaneous feats of being the dumbest thing I have ever bought as well as one of the most awesome things I own.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Admitting You Have a Problem

Hi. My name is Ashley, and I have a problem.

I need the iPhone 4S. I mean...I want the iPhone 4S. Which basically means that I need it. It isn't really a want, because due to a lot of calculating and fanangling, I can get it for $20 or so. So why not, right? I mean it'd be stupid not to. I want to correct the mistake I made last time and get a white one this time. And it'll be a creamy block sitting there in front of me, its milky sheen whiter than my own pasty white skin tone. I'll take it out on dates, buy it some lo mein, probably propose to it if things go well, then it'll probably end up dumping me and kicking me out of our house because it needs "space," and I know I'm always touching it because I'm obsessed with Doodle Jump but that's no reason...

Let me start over.

I want the iPhone 4S. There is no justification whatsoever for needing it. I have the iPhone 4. I adore it. But the 4S is betterrrrr. [Insert lots of whining here, where the last word of every sentence is drawn out like thissssssss]

It also stems from sort of immortal tech competition between me and my father. All my life, if I ever found out that he had some newer software or gadget, oh man did I need it. He had an iPhone for at least a year or two before me, and I made sure to glower at him when he'd want to show me something amazing on it. Shortly after that, however, I began to take the reins as the owner of only the finest new gadgets in the family. I got my iMac; he bought one a year later. I got an iPad; he bought one shortly after. I got an iPhone 4 when he still had the 3GS. And then he got the iPhone 4S. And now I'm stewing in jealousy like a beef stroganoff.

Nevertheless, unless something miraculously simple comes along, I won't go out of my way to obtain it. I owe this to a book I picked up recently entitled Obsessive Consumption, by Kate Bingaman-Burt. Basically going to be recording every single thing I purchase(yes, every useless thing I actually spend my money on) for a year or longer. This will begin on November 1, which seems fitting because this is when lots of Christmas shopping begins. I think it'll be an interesting project. Also thinking of drawing the things I purchased like Bingaman-Burt did, so I might even post pictures of the occasional day's purchases. Even thinking of becoming really ballsy and drawing these things in an iPad app with a stylus...exclusively. Because nothing says ballsy like drawing on a gadget instead of using actual pen and paper. Doesn't get anymore badass than that.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

In Which a Total Stranger Changes Everything

I started a different blog post the other day, ironically about the iPhone 4S and my thoughts on that, but then Wednesday happened and kind of pushed that out of the way for awhile. So instead I'm going to talk about a complete stranger and how much that stranger has positively affected my life and, in my opinion, the world.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Final Fantasy X Remake Announced: I Slip into Nostalgia

Joystiq really tried to pull one over on me the other day. It was September 14th, a day like any other, where I practically did shots of Mountain Dew in order to stay awake at work, and decided to check up on gaming news. The high walls of my cube could do nothing to muffle the sound of my neighbor's slurping at her pop can, which happens each morning at precisely 9:30. But it just so happened that this was a good thing that day, because once I scrolled down to a certain news story, I sucked in a gasp at the very same time as a particularly loud slurp from my neighbor. I don't think anyone knew what to think, as nobody made a sound after that. But I saw it, and the gasp was out, and my hand was over my heart and for several minutes I was transported back ten years to the glorious summer I spent playing that game, my favorite game of all time. The headline read: "Square Enix announces Final Fantasy 10 remake for PS Vita - and PS3. And then I plummeted into nostalgia.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Fundraising Success and Being Happy

Seeing as I've never raised money for anything except various clubs in high school*, this was a fantastic success for me. Honestly raising ten bucks is a success in my book, but $219 is amazing. THANK YOU to everyone who helped. This, coupled with a great night with good friends, made this weekend one to remember.

So hello, mid-twenties. I hope we have a great few years together, at least until you leave me crushed and broken on the floor crying and screaming "WHHYYYYYY?! I LOVED YOU AND GAVE YOU MY FIRSTBORN CHILD AND THIS IS HOW YOU REPAY ME." **

Now I'm thinking back to that post I did awhile ago about getting rid of junk and my current ultimate dream of having my own place. This needs to become official. I need to start a project. I need to be motivated and not just be all talk. The overarching goal here is to simply be happier. I'm 24 years old and I have the energy of a 90 year old. In fact I think I know some 90 year olds who have more energy than I do. What I don't know yet is how to begin. I'm sick of being blah half the time and just wanting to nap. I want to live instead of just survive. What's the point in any of this if you're just slogging through life when you only (knowingly) get one life? It's a waste, is what it is. Now since I have no real sense of how to start any of this, I'm going to just put down a list of things I'd like to accomplish, some simpler than others:

  • Do small things immediately (hanging up my coat instead of tossing it on a chair to hang up later, etc)

  • Exercise steadily

  • Understand and accept what's worth worrying about and what isn't (probably the most difficult for me)

  • Let things go

  • Get rid of unnecessary possessions

  • Go to bed earlier

  • Stop lamenting all of these glorious things I wish I could do and enjoy what I can do, right now

There will probably be more. I came up with those in about ten seconds so they could probably use some work, as some of them kind of overlap, but I think you get the idea. It feels good already, just to have something down that I know I need to work on. Some people go through this when they're already married/have kids/etc, so I'm glad I'm diving in early. Although I'll probably have to rework and add goals after the married/kids thing happens (?), but I think at that point it'll be nice to look back and see how much of this has stuck around. Ooh! I'd also like to completely revamp the site, although that isn't a particularly deep or life-altering goal, so perhaps I'll make a small, short-term list. Anyway, I'll be turning 25 in 364 days, so get ready for a road trip because I'm renting a car dammit.

* By various I mean one.
** How all my relationships end.