To Draw A Bird

vintage-daisy-dress-park.jpg

A couple days ago, Kitty from Kittymanu.com - my crafty friend - was asking if I want to learn how to draw and try the bird-watching activity with her new friend Paulo from Portugal. Paulo is a bird-enthusiast and environment activist who happened to stay for a while in Indonesia to work with the people at Burung Indonesia Foundation (http://www.burung.org/) and he's an avid illustrator. I was never good on drawing - EVER - in my life, but learning how to draw and bird-watching sounds like a perfect Sunday getaway for me, so I said yes. Knowing that the gathering will be interesting for someone who actually can draw, I ask my bestfriends Dimas and Aji to tag along. We met at Kridaloka Park, Senayan, and after a quick introduction we all try to spot a bird on top of the trees using binoculars. It was damn hard! I barely can see anything (How can I? All I see are leaves and branches...) but Paulo assisted us and catch the bird using his own camera for us to see.

There, we spot one little Ruby-cheeked Sunbird on one of the branch. The tiny bird is so cute and still! We took several zoomed-images on our camera and/or phone, then we continue to draw her based on the photos.

I have to say that I really can't draw. HAHAHA. Like, literally suck at drawing. But I made friends with the right dudes, you see, who know how to paint like a pro. Dimas and Paulo even add watercolors on their illustrations. Arghhh!

photography Myself, Kitty Manu and Dimas Hendrajaya

Eventhough I sucked at my own drawings, I had such a lovely afternoon. Spending sunset hours in the park, somewhere beneath the tall and cold buildings surround, is quite a delightful way to enjoy Sunday. Hope yours were also as sweet as the daisies print on my dress too. Dear Kitty, if you read this, thank you for asking me out to draw a bird and end up showing me how to draw a memory. Bisous!



{OUTFIT} | Daisy Print Dress bought at The Blog Shop, Singapore / NILA ANTHONY velvet sling bag with silver chain / PORTEEGOODS maroon oxford shoes / TOPSHOP tights

The Granny Look

photography Vivi Svarnam

HELLO from my new pastel hair for you dearest readers. Last week I officially dyed my ash-blonde hair to lilac, and I have nothing to say except that I really, really love it! I never thought that Lilac hair would feel that magical, but it really does. And I'm officially looked like a granny now, with my platinum-lilac head and my old vintage wardrobe.

To add a good amount of oldness into this blog, I collaborated with the new vintage concept e-store called KOLLAGE (www.kollage.co.id) to review their products and share my favorite picks to you. My first pick is this beloved dark-green dress with peterpan collar, that looked very Alice in a darker way and also quite casual for everyday wear. But for this post I don't want to be casual, so I wore my long brown coat to dramatize the look. Beside the purple hair, there's another special thing on this post : my new (vintage) bag treasure, gifted from a very special lady friend of mine Cindy Karmoko from Hippie Gone Mad. Thank you! All of those things had make a very, very happy granny.

{OUTFIT} | Dark Green Vintage-style dress and Faux Pearl Necklace from KOLLAGE (www.kollage.co.id) / Vintage Long Coat (www.etsy.com) / Vintage Mustard Bag - a gift / TOPSHOP leather belt / Vintage T-strap shoes

Living Loving Class x KittyKitz x Lucedale : Play With Flowers!

Last August end, on Saturday the 30th, I collaborated with one of my favorite blog LIVINGLOVING and my new crafty blogger-friend KITTYMANU to held a short-workshop on flowers called Living Loving Class : Play With Flowers. The event was held on Jungle Audio Post Kemang and divided into two sessions for about 28 participants. I have joined their event before, the Living Loving's Afternoon Delight, so the second experience is less nerve-wrecking. On this event, Nike and Miranti from Living Loving were becoming our deared hosts, while Kitty taught the participant about how to make their own flower corsage (fresh!). My part is to make flower-crowns from fresh flowers... And as you can see above, I made a collage out of everyone's happy faces after they finished the workshop and wearing their own DIY Flower Crown + Corsage! It was such a wonderful day filled with pretty mess, delicious cookies, new friends and warm interactions.

My picture can't exactly representing the wonderful atmosphere, but I surely do still remember how fine the day was. LIVINGLOVING and KITTYMANU are regularly hosting workshops and/or creative gathering. Visit their blog and subscribe to their newsletter if you want to get notification about upcoming classes! Also, for more pictures about the event, check out THIS post or follow them on Instagram (@livinglovingnet/@kittymanu). I'd surely be more addicted to such crafty gathering. See you on the next event!

Big Yellow Heart

photography Vivi Svarnam

Saying goodbye to something that used to be part of our appearance is not a very common melancholic goodbye, but somehow it does, in my case. I'm saying goodbye to my ash-blonde hair that has been around since my birthday in April. Being a "blonde" girl, in a way, is quite challenging. In my country there's no such bad jokes about being blonde, not in general, but still - having a light-dyed hair and granny looking isn't a very preferrable look for most people. And also for some of my readers/followers as well. I got some not-so-friendly comments about my hair, and the way it made me look (old, grannish, dull, aaaand more)... But what those commenters are missing is the fact that I don't really care about how perfect I can look in photographs. I am honestly, completely enjoying being an ash-blonde, and for any bad pictures or bad hair day, I accepted it all. It was such a fun ride, to reflect. And I had wonderful experience as a woman who take pride on making decisions and live with it without regrets. However, another fun is about to begin - I'm dyeing my hair lilac (pastel purple) tomorrow! It's going to be another chapter of dealing with what people might have to say about my appearance again, but what I care about is always, and will always be, about how precious it feels to embrace changes. To have a yellow hair isn't the most important thing, but to have a heart filled with acceptance of the yellow-hair experience is probably more essential. Big yellow heart, of course.

{OUTFIT} | Vintage Knitted Mustard Cardigan - www.etsy.com / NEW LOOK Denim Shorts / PITOLILA Arm Candies (www.instagram.com/pitolila) / Unbranded Heart Sunglasses / Topshop Lace Crop Top

LET'S JOIN TAIWAN EXCELLENCE BATIK COMPETITION!

Hello readers! Sudah cukup lama juga nggak share tentang kompetisi kreatif seru di blog ini. Kebetulan teman-teman dari Taiwan Excellence sedang mengadakan Batik Competition yang berhadiah jutaan rupiah. As quoted dari konferensi pers mereka kemarin: Diselenggarakan dalam rangka memperingati hari kemerdekaan Indonesia ke-69, kompetisi ini mengundang bakat-bakat kreatif dari seluruh Indonesia untuk mewujudkan filosofi bernilai, andal dan inovatif dari Taiwan Excellence serta berpartisipasi dalam merayakan warisan budaya kebanggaan bangsa. Mumpung masih dalam semangat 17-an kemarin, buat yang suka gambar atau desain, coba baca deh dan ikutan!


HOW TO JOIN?

Berikut adalah persyaratan bagi kalian yang tertarik untuk ikut kompetisi Batik ini:

  1. Terbuka untuk seluruh Warga Negara Indonesia, berusia minimal 17 tahun
  2. Membuat sedikitnya 1 (satu) motif Batik yang mengkombinasikan karakteristik Batik Indonesia dan filosofi worthy (bernilai), reliable (andal) dan innovative (inovatif) dari Taiwan Excellence
  3. Motif Batik dapat dibuat dari awal atau dengan memodifikasi motif Batik lokal yang telah ada dengan unsur-unsur Taiwan Excellence
  4. Motif Batik dapat digambar secara manual atau digital dan harus memasukkan logo Taiwan Excellence yang dapat diperoleh dari penyelenggara kompetisi (lihat detail kontak di bawah).
  5. Menyertakan sebuah tulisan singkat (300 kata) dalam format .doc atau .pdf yang menjelaskan cerita di balik motif Batik yang dibuat serta kaitannya dengan filosofi worthy, reliable dan innovative dari Taiwan Excellence
  6. Motif Batik yang dikumpulkan adalah karya yang dibuat sendiri dan dapat dipertanggungjawabkan orisinalitasnya serta belum pernah memenangkan perlombaan sejenis
  7. Mengirimkan motif Batik yang dicetak/digambar di atas kertas A4, tulisan singkat, data diri (nama, alamat, nomor telepon dan email yang dapat dihubungi) dan fotokopi KTP ke Panitia Kompetisi Batik Taiwan Excellence : Gedung Recapital Lantai 3, Jl. Adityawarman Kav. 55, Kebayoran Baru, Jakarta 12160, dari 28 Agustus hingga 29 September 2014
  8. Panitia akan menghubungi pemenang paling lambat pada 31 Oktober 2014. Keputusan dewan juri adalah mutlak dan tidak dapat diganggu gugat
  9. Karya ketiga pemenang menjadi hak milik TAITRA

WHAT'S THE PRIZE?

  • Juara I - Uang tunai Rp 5.000.000 dan HTC Desire 616
  • Juara II - Uang tunai Rp 3.000.000 dan Acer Iconia Tab 7
  • Juara III - Uang tunai Rp 2.000.000 dan JustMobile Gum++
  • 5 finalis memperoleh sertifikat dari Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA)

Menarik, kan? Selain bisa tambah portfolio supaya makin dikenal, kamu juga bekesempatan untuk memperluas network dan pengalaman dengan ikutan kompetisi ini. Nah, start your design drawings now and win the contest!



Silakan kirimkan pertanyaan ke taiwanexcellencebatik@yahoo.co.id
atau hubungi Michael Enrico (085716008411) untuk informasi lebih lanjut.
http://www.taiwanexcellence.com.tw/id/batik.aspx

GOODLUCK!

Free Photoshop Action : Natural Vintage Tone #1 (ALMOND)

I've been asked by my readers and friends about the "vintage" tone that I use for my photos. One of them called my pictures as the "natural-looking vintage filtered photos", which I find interesting. I never heard of anything like a "natural" vintage filter before, but apparently it refers to the light and not-so-edited impression that some people think I got (on my photos). I personally tend to make just a slight change on my pictures because I don't want to completely lose the original colors. Maybe that's where the "natural" word came from! For thanking your recognition and interest, I'll be posting a series of my regular photoshop actions starting from the first one called "Almond". The action can be downloaded below:

After downloading the action, all you have to do is loading it into your photoshop. There's one useful YOUTUBE VIDEO guide on how to do it. Hope you have lots of fun with Almond!

Revisiting Faith

I've been preparing myself to the day I finally write about the things that have changed from this blog, from me, from my life. After "celebrating" 5 years of blogging last August 4th, I knew that it's time to do so. This might make more sense to my loyal readers who's been following me from the first time I blogged under Sunflares Plethora, my old blog title. I used to write long, thoughtful posts about life and the melancholic side of it. I used to fill my blog with more inspirational posts instead of advertorial ones. I also used to share more productive topics instead of flooding the page with my own outfit pictures. Now when I look at this blog, there's this slight unfamiliar feeling - sometimes it looks like someone else's blog. I realised that unfamiliarity is one of the side-effect of change. I've changed.

Question : Why do I change?

The answer can be long, but I'd keep it simple - I have to change. There are many opportunities related to blogging career that come along my way during these 5 years, and honestly I wasn't very careful on choosing which one I want to try. I made a good mistake when I went with the new-fashion-blogging-trend flow after I decided to blog full-time and move to the capital. I took some jobs that I hate, some projects that were harder to finish than I thought, some not-so-useful collaborations. I learn how to monetize my blog in easy and hard way, and knowing the disadvantages of both. The only way I can grow is by letting myself to change - either for shorter term or longer period of time. And as a person who hates (very, deeply, religiously hates) changes, there were nothing easy about it. I knew I let many readers down and losing potential real-life connections with them. I also knew that I failed myself by focusing on how to make a living from something I like, but end up pushing myself to do many things I don't enjoy by heart. I knew that for quite a long while, but decided to hold the disappointment because I got to finish my process. And being said that, I have to say, I had my lessons.

One of my reader asked me not so long ago, will she (as a reader) ever got to see I blog like the way I used to do back then? The question made me feel like I owe an explanation to her, and to anyone interested. Because maybe, I need that question to reassure me about the true passions I believed in. Because maybe I'm not the only one who get through the similar search of faith by exploring life beyond comfortable boundaries and making important mistakes. And for once, I feel like walking down the old dusty road from where I came from, tracing back the familiar path of faith that brought me to where I stand today.

For me blogging is a way to communicate with the world because human needs to feel connected with one another. Human needs social interaction and I personally wish that I can be part of the online community that construct positive attitudes and inspire meaningful habit to someone's life. I'd like to get into the excitement again. But if I never try to change before, I would never know what I truly want.

When it comes to faith, I guess in some points we perceived it as a commitment to believe on something forever, a 'till-the-end choice, a fixed feeling. Faith is like our ultimate reliance that never change. But it's not. Faith can change, too. Our faith will be questioned in many ways by many people including ourselves - even especially by ourselves. It is not a static idea of trust but rather a dynamic conversation between those strongest values we want to keep for ourselves in life. And faith does change because faith isn't this simple thing that fades over time, faith is a complexion of beliefs that resides inside our soul no matter how much we've physically evolved or mentally travelled. Faith does change in forms, but never in core. Deep down inside our faith stays alive while we go out and try so many different things that goes the opposite ways. It knows we will come back because faith is pretty much like a home : it keeps us safe and secure by letting us know that we will always have a place to rest and be ourselves.

“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” 
― Terry PratchettA Hat Full of Sky

photography by Vivi Svarnam

I've travelled far from the starting line, but time has made me revisiting my faith again. And as I learned how to keep pursuing my true passions, I also appreciate the experience of changing more than before. It is true that change is inevitable, but some changes are deeply significant that they leave marks on your journey. Thank you for letting me share one of mine's.

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{OUTFIT} H&M Black Cable Knits Sweater / Pencil Skirt and Silver Tassle Clutch from WWW.ODIOLI.COM / Vintage Pillbox Hat bought via WWW.ETSY.COM / Vintage Aigner Wingtip Spectator Shoes

Just Yesterday

It seems like yesterday, when I saw your shadow blocking the window view in front of me. It felt like a day before, when the road was empty and you took me to the old town in the north. It just a sigh away, when we talked overnight and slept exhaustedly on the office's floor. It wasn't long time ago, when I was sick and you hold me tight just to let me know I'm safe.

But so many little thoughts are also brought by yesterday,
the fight
the silence
the doubt
the quiet weep.

Tomorrow will come again, just like any other day. But for the beautiful memories, for the painfully-hard to be forgotten good days, for the wonderful stillness, for the unspoken forgiveness...

Please bring me back yesterday.