creating vs consuming


i saw this picture on instagram from Sean McCabe / seanwes and it really got me thinking. i consume so much media everyday from reading blogs in the morning, to checking instagram and twitter through out the day, to cruising the internet when i get home, listening to podcasts while i do chores, i am even watching netflix right now as i type this!

there are days that i don't create anything at all and all i do is consume. i look at other peoples work and projects and think how cool it is. it's been on my mind lately to scale back my consumption of other peoples projects, lives, work so that my brain has more space for my own ideas. I think that a lot of times we spend to much time looking to other for inspiration when we should be looking to ourselves for the answer.

anyways i really liked that lettering and the message, so just a little food for thought today. happy Wednesday!

out to adventure

photo adventure supplies // blog-action

i'm getting all my camera stuff packed up and ready to go on our next adventure! on friday  i (and the boy, plus my brother and his lady) are driving out to the desert to backpack through paria canyon. i'm really excited to be braking out my old nikon again! i don't think i've used it since i went to south africa a few years ago! 

i am really hoping to get some good shots, and maybe do a whole photo series of canyon photos. plus i love using film for the anticipation of not knowing really what you have until you get home and get it developed. call me old fashioned but i just love film, whatever. it's a little more work (ok a lot) but i feel like the pictures i get with that film camera really come out better than with the DSLR, maybe because you just have to be more conscious of what you are doing.

anyways i am still going to bring my phone for some digital pics too, i wouldn't want to miss out on all that color! i definitely only bought black and white film, because, dude black and white is my jam!

have an awesome rest of the week, and a wonderful next week too!

site redesign

so i've decide to redesign my website, you'll notice that most of the tabs at the top are gone for the time being, and theres only one thing on the main page:

under construction

i really am re-imagining how i want my portfolio site set up and what to focus on. if anyone has any tips for squarespace that would be awesome or any cool portfolio sites just to check out that would be cool too. but with a site redesign that means there will probably be some layout changes over here on the blog too, but i plan to keep this page up through it so if stuff starts looking weird i apologize! 

anyways this post isn't super exciting but hopefully you are having a good week, and happy hump-day!


we're getting a little personal today, FYI.

i have been MIA for a while, i know. but life has seemed kinda crazy lately. I made a sorta major life change which was to move in with my boyfriend. we ended up finding an apartment much faster than i thought we would, the apartment game in san francisco is fierce and after the first apartment we saw that literally had a line of people around the block waiting to see it, i thought it would take months. but no, 2 weeks after deciding to start casually looking we were getting keys and signing leases. i have been in move in mode ever since. 

living room // blog-action

i'm not sure how common this is but since moving in i have been weirdly consumed but decorating and organizing all of our stuff. these things take time i know, especially when combining things with a significant other for the the first time. my goodness we have a lot of stuff and consequently a lot of the same stuff, what can i say my guy has good taste :) we've been in the new place for a week now and its starting to come together, the couch is getting delivered today, i ordered some rugs, and got a little crazy at the container store buying storage solutions haha. i'll be sure to update with pictures once our  furniture is all in and there are hopefully a few less boxes around!

here's some of the decor thats been spinning around in my head.

apartment decor

{kitchen organizer} {planter} {necklace holder} {triangle shelves} {circle pillow} {couch} {chevron rug}

Happy weekend! hopefully yours is tons of fun and doesn't consist of unpacking boxes :)

baking cookies

heart cookies

i got up to some cutesy baking this week over on the Yellow Owl Workshop Blog! normally i'm not a big valentines day person, i waitressed all through college and now will never go to a restaurant on valentines day, plus its always seemed a little cheesy to me, but whatevs. Heart cookies are cute so i can get behind that!

designing for myself

designing for myself is one of the hardest and most infuriating things ever. i get a strange little kernel of an idea, and your brain works on it for  while with out actually putting anything down, when i finally start to get something down on paper it never really comes out how i'd liked or hoped it would, but then the problem is that i've become attached to that idea and have a hard time iterating on it. when designing for myself i also always seem to skip those crucial first steps that i always take in designing for someone else, the steps that help me to understand where the client is coming from, understand what they want from the design, the feeling and message they want to convey. so i find myself starting over and going through the processes of again, in the back of my mind hoping i'll come up with something similar to what my silly brain thought up in the beginning with out any frame or reference, but the case usually is the opposite, but the out come does end up being better because i've gone through the process and the thought behind the design is there.

mood board

my side project needs a logo, which in general is one of my favorite things to design, and after a lot of drafts of what i originally thought i wanted, i'm going back and figuring out what it is i really want, what i want the logo to convey and all that. starting with a mood board really does help, its crazy. now with a bit clearer of a direction to go in, i've got a better idea of what i want and what i need.

black and white

black and white cliffside with prink frame // blog-action

this is a little preview of a project that i've been working on. its a personal project that i've actually had in the back of my brain for the last 5 years and its finally starting to come together. making moves! i love black and white photography as well as film, and i've got an old nikon film camera that actually used to be my main camera for a lot of years before i got a DSLR. that means i have a ton of prints, from back in the day when you used to get film developed! man that makes me feel a little old haha. but i've had a few idea on what to do with all these prints and i'm excited to finally be executing on one!

black and white cliffside 2 yellow frame // blog-action
black and white golden gate bridge green frame // blog-action

i'll be posting more details as this project comes together, but for now i'm just keep plugging away at it, but i wanted to share just a little snippet!

happy friday!

the daily routines of creative people

i have been obsessed with this info-graphic lately, this website podio is serious awesome, they have an interactive graphic over there that you should definitely check out!

Want to develop a better work routine? Discover how some of the world's greatest minds organized their days.
Click image to see the interactive version (via Podio).

 I am also a little obsessed with routines, and trying to tweak my own for the better. but i love knowing how other creatives work, how they get everything into a day. recently i've been feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the projects i want to take on, combined with wanting to maintain friendships and a relationship. it's actually turned me into a giant stress ball and i felt like every aspect got half assed this week. i figured that its no way to live or get things done so i've resolved to taking 2 nights out of the week as work/personal nights, no making plans. I have to think of it as i have to work late therefore i cannot just say yes to anything coming along. because that really is what my problem is, even when i have work i need to get done, if i get a call or a text asking if i want to go out that night, i will almost always say yes, not because i like going out particularly, but because i love hanging out with my friends and or boyfriend.

figuring out the right work and life balance has been a goal for a while (because i seriously seem to have a hard time with it i guess) so i am hopeful that this next step will work out.

happy saturday!

making moves


i have always loved new years resolutions, firstly because i love making lists, and in past years i've always had a laundry list of things i want to accomplish, but those lists always end up so long and outrageous that i never do get any of them done. so this year i'm trying to keep it simple.

make moves is something thats become kind of a mantra to me lately. i always have 1000 different ideas swirling around in my head at any given point, but a lot of times i find it hard to act on one. so rather than just talking about and thinking about things, ideas, projects i want to do, i want to make moves, i want to make them happen. 

i think of it kind of like a game of chess (which i am terrible at by the way), but to get your pieces  from where they are to where they need to be, you have to make moves.  and some times its small moves, one space at a time, but other times you are set up for a big move and you can get all the way across the board.

this also applies to pretty much every aspect of my life, nothing gets done with out making moves. there are trips i want to take so my first move is to plan, and research, it makes it a lot easier to execute the bigger steps later, or if the bank has charged me a bogus fee, its not going to just go way, i actually have to call and do something about it. i have to to be the one to make these moves, because no one else is going to move for me.

so this year i will make moves, i will follow through on ideas i've had for years, i will do the things that need to be done even if they are hard and i don't want to do them, i will make the things i want to happen, happen.

the new year

sorry, but holy shit! it's practically 2015! like less than 24 hours!

this year has been... interesting? good? amazing? mediocre? honestly i feel like this year had a lot of ups and down in all aspects of life, from work to personal but everything is evening out at pretty ok. is that bad of me to say? work and my job are great and i've gotten to move up and do and learn a lot of things this year, but at the same time none of that came with out some stress, anxiety, and lets face it, fear. as far as my personal life it hasn't been the roller coaster that other years have been, but it has also had plenty of great and shitty.

all in all i'm pretty satisfied with 2014

i think i said this at the beginning of the year, on the old blog format, if anyone remember that (coincidentally all those post magically disappeared when i switched from worpress to square space, kinda a bummer huh?) but i digress, i said something along the lines of :: that "this year would be a 'building year'". yeah like in sports... but i think i worked my ass off and things are setting up to come together in 2015 and i'm pretty stoked for it!

so bring it on 2015, i'm ready for ya! and to show ya heres a new calendar, you can down load and print, it's sized to print on 11x17 paper and trimmed down.


down load the PDF here!

and have a happy and wonderful new years!

the wacom

i got a wacom tablet! its been on my list for  long time now and i finally decided that it was time. seriously, how did it take me this long? because the wacom is awesome!  however using the tablet is a little weird and unnatural at first, i'm used to looking down at my paper and pencil while drawing rather than at the screen. as with anything practice makes perfect and i do love a good challenge so for the month of novemeber i am going to draw one picture a week with the wacom to get used to using it and get good at it.

here's my first go at it, i seriously drew that speech bubble like four hundred times! 

also isn't my mom's dog holly adrobs! (ha) happy wednesday!

a few things that have been keeping me busy

life lately

1. Life at the workshop has been buzzing along with the holiday season fast aproaching it some times seems like there aren't enough hours in the day. But I always manage to take some time to try out our new stamps!

2. In any spare moment I have at home I've been working on a few side projects (I'll be sharing some of those soon hopefully!). That usually means working curled up in bed with Milly. 

3. Last weekend I went camping in Yosemite and we hiked North Dome, the mountain directly across from the famous Half Dome, so the views were spectacular needless to say. Also it rained and since we were so high up on the mountain it actually snowed!  it was quite beautiful once I got past the fact that I was cold and wet.

4. Which leads to the last bit, my car broke down in Yosemite and had to be towed out which was a fun adventure all in itself. Ugh! But it's all fixed up now thank goodness. 


Have a happy weekend! 

photoshooting & nearly impossible

nearly impossible conference

i had the awesome opportunity to work with Laure Joliet this past weekend as her photo assistant at the Nearly Impossible Conference, it just so happened to take place at Heath Ceramics which is an awesome spot, with huge windows and beautiful light, not to mention amazing pottery. Nearly Impossible was basically about small product based businesses coming together and learning from each other how to grow and be successful.

nearly impossible - speaker

we mostly were concerned with photographing the space, which included the  main lecture hall where all the speakers, err spoke, and the back "boiler room" where they held the expert lab - one on ones with makers, designers, and other awesome entrepreneurs.

photographing - expert lab

its a bummer my sad little iphone camera couldn't really capture the awesomeness of this room and the beautiful huge windows and light coming in (luckily the 6 is on its way to me!)

nearly impossible - set ups

it was an awesome day and i was lucky enough to catch a couple speakers in between shooting and Laure was seriously the sweetest person ever! the conference will be in new york in october and if you get the chance i would totally recommend checking it out!

another year

turning 27

yesterday i celebrated my 27th birthday with dinner at a bougie restaurant and beers at my local dive bar. at one point in the night the conversation turned to "what would my 16 year old self think of 27 year old me? What would 21 year old me think?" and the best i could come up with was that my life is not turning out how i'd expected it to. 16 year old punk kid natalie would not have expected to willing be in some swanky, expensive restaurant for dinner, in fact she might have been a bit disgusted. i also had a lot of naively high expectations for what was possible to accomplish before 30. the reality is even though i've take some unexpected turns, where i am right now is pretty awesome, and where i'm going, be it where i'm currently planning, or someplace completely different, it will likely be awesome.

my mom gave me some pretty solid advice when i moved out (at the tender age of 17!), "nat, life's as fun as you make it". and i totally think thats true, you are in charge of your own life and if you want something get it, but if its at the expense of your own happiness then its probably not worth it. 

i am very lucky to have amazing people in my life and to get to do the things i love for both work and play. so heres to another year of awesome!


man nature is pretty awesome! the colors and shapes out there that just come about naturally are really the best. heres a few more from my camping trip a few weeks ago. no editing, all natural (ha!)

night time and long exposures

its been a while, i know... i was taking a much needed vacation, camping with my brother and friend in southern california. 

i took my camera along (duh) and had the opportunity to do some fun stuff, experimenting with long exposures at night for some pretty rad effects.

these first ones were taken on the lowest shutter speed setting of my camera, with out a tripod, so one is a little blurry. you have no idea how hard i was trying to stand still and hold the camera steady to get these shots! for these two good one i've got a bunch of really bad blurry shots!

remember that awesome super moon? if you missed it, enjoy!

super moon long exposure

i remember seeing an ad a couple years ago where people where drawing with light, so we had the brilliant idea to light sticks on fire, blow them out to get an ember and draw with those. for this i set the camera on a sturdy surface (again because i didn't have a tripod) which ended up being my camp cooking pot upside down. then holding down the shutter until the drawing was done, so anywhere from 2 to 10 seconds if i remember correctly.

ember drawings - long exposure

one of my favorite parts of the trip was we spent 2 days backpacking. it was so nice and refreshing to get away from the sounds of cars and other people for a little bit. not to mention the beautiful sky! for these if found what i dubbed the "tripod rock" a triangular rock which i propped the camera up on to get a good view of the sky, because again, no tripod, i just didn't think i'd need it when i was packing. then held the shutter for 10-20 seconds, the tricking part here was that it was so dark i had a hard time focusing the camera because i really couldn't see anything with out my flashlight, and even then it was difficult to see if i was in focus. and forget auto focus, it was much to dark for that, cameras are smart but not that smart.

stars - long exposure

this was one was a lot of fun and i am still a little amazed how awesome these came out! setting the camera on a rock for stability i held the shutter while someone flashed the flash light at the other person posing then they'd do another pose and we'd flash the flashlight again, and so on for how ever many poses we felt like.

ghosted images - long exposure

i'll be post more pictures from my trip i'm sure, i took so many!

it was a good trip but i'm glad to be back in the city, and i'm feeling full of ideas after my mental break!

time-lapse drawings

have you ever watched a time lapse of, well anything? its pretty cool, my friend Evah Fan turned me on to Lapse It an app for your iphone or android that allows you to make time lapse videos! you can set the frequency of frames it takes to either slow down or speed up action and then you can post to the interwebs!

so i've been messing around with it of coarse!

5 minutes well spent

seriously, the kids over at alfred image works are doing some awesome things! 

here is the latest, and if it doesn't make you giggle, maybe you need a hug