My Bazaar Bizarre Interview!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Craft adventures with Le Petit Elefant

LPE Arawr 100x100 Craft adventures with Le Petit ElefantDo you ever need to recharge yourself to inspire you, and how do you go about it?

I think most people turn to retail therapy in times of high stress. I do the same but it’s a little more ridiculous and impulsive—I buy plane tickets. I’m a nomadic addict who can’t stay in one place for more than six weeks, and it’s taken me from San Francisco to Los Angeles, across the country to New York City, and over the Pacific Ocean to Southeast Asia where I lived for 7 months. These trips aren’t solely vacations however; I’m working too. As I meet people & travel, I collect materials for my plush, sketch the surrounding scenes, and write down my adventures to use for later projects. Then, when I come home, wherever that ends up being, I work furiously until I run out of steam and have to leave home again. It’s a wonderful cycle and how I work best.

LPE Cabinet 100x100 Craft adventures with Le Petit Elefant

What inspired you to go into the craft business & do you still have a day job?

Hands down the best thing that’s ever happened to me was getting laid off from New Line Cinema, my first and only 9-5 job. The combination of unemployment checks, severance & money saved from the past two years provided me with a comfortable, financial cushion to launch my business. It was a very slow process, and I honestly didn’t envision it becoming a business until much later. All I knew is that I wanted to draw & sew.

Currently, I have no day job. I’ve been living solely on my creative income. I’ve never worked as hard in my life & for that reason I don’t think I can work for anyone else. I see where I can go as an artist and compromising my time and energy doesn’t seem worth it, even if that means living without a steady income and risking going broke.

reaaaad the rest of it here!

Just Like Home

Friday, October 29, 2010

I brought Levain cookies from NYC to LA. They complimented the all-day work party rather well.
We took a break to lunch & munch on delicious greens.
Thank you CSA.
Sketches from my long flight last night. 3 hour flight delay is no good.
Bruce figuring out the Marcel the Shell costume for he & Rachel.
Family dinner
of eggplant parm (Kevin's mom's recipe), pasta, fried rice, bok choy & garlic bread. Odd fusion of Italian & Asian but it was 'tasty-seeming'

Last hours in NY (again, mostly trees)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Alice's tea cup with Emily :)
Trekked across the park to get to Levain Bakery & meet Erika for lunch.
I really didn't want to leave.
love & trees
I'm so happy! I had to capture my joy!
I love that the pumpkin is HURLING!! hahahaha
Jonathan Adler pillow... I want right NOW.
God's gift to man.
Bought a few. Nibbled on one. Gave one to Bob. One to Erika. The rest for LA. You're welcome teehee.
Dang it. I wish I knew!

So long NYC. I'll be back. Hopefully, with an intent to stay.

So Far Around the Bend

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I was standing by the lake in Central Park, looking out at the trees and felt like crying. I really don't want to leave tonight. It's just so darn pretty! I realized too it'd been a year now since I left the states. I can't describe how quickly and slowly the year passed, but I just can't believe it's been a whole year. I left New York & here I am again. I've come full circle & find I'm definitely in much better shape professionally & personally. One thing I noticed was not only how much I missed New York but how much I missed feeling like I lived here. It's one thing to be a tourist & another to be a resident and I definitely prefer living as a resident. My core friends that defined my experiences aren't living in the city anymore & I love the city just as much without them in it. It feels more mine now. The city doesn't intimidate me.

I have a feeling I'll be back with a more permanent status. Not sure when but perhaps sooner rather than later. The next time I visit NYC, I'll have an illustration portfolio in hand, ready to pursue a career as a freelance illustrator :)

I'll post more pics when I'm back in LA. I'm off to continue my tradition of Shake Shack as my last meal in NYC :)

Autumn in New York... Swooon!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Warning! Most of the pictures are of TREES & what they're supposed to look like in autumn.
I traveled to one of my favorite spots in New York... Dumbo, specifically the area by the park & Powerhouse.
Mmmm... look at that orange!
I sat down on the rocks, used the crevices as my cup of water & started painting.
A gent from the NY Daily News was snapping pics of me as I painted. It was very awkward & flattering.
Yay powerhouse arena! Infinite love for his place.
So silly.
Found these at Spring in DUMBO.
In a moment of serendipity, my left frontal gut told me to walk into P.S. Books before getting on the train. Like a good person, I listened to my gut & was rewarded: directly in front of me was a poster advertising Drawn in Brooklyn, an art exhibit of local children's book illustrators in the Brooklyn Library. Oh, & what? The museum is by Prospect Park? What?! Heeee... So off I went!
I decided to make a game for myself: find the tree with the reddest leaves!
While talking to James today, I remembered my story about Irene. When I picked up my car from the dealership last week, I chatted a bit with Irene the receptionist. Definitely in her 60s, she had a strong New York accent & a full head of poorly dyed hair. I knew she & I would get along well since she encouraged me to have a donut hole with my chamomile tea. Anyway, I told her I was going to NYC in a week. She got really really excited for me and told me to do two things: first, I had to eat a potato knish at a random Jewish deli, and second, fly to Mass. to see the leaves. One of her fondest memories is walking with her friend (now deceased) and collecting red maple leaves. Before he died of cancer, he mailed her a set of leaves in a plastic bag with a note saying he missed her. She keeps the leaves the fridge & claims they haven't changed color or wilted one bit. Magical. So I plan on giving my red leaves findings to her :)
Pretty good...
But clearly not good enough :)
Jackpot. I sat down & drew & collected.
BK library.
Heeee... Chowder!
Madeline & her elephant :)
Afterwards, I did yoga & met with Brian & Candy at Lulu's.
I love the jars! The little drawers contain the toppings!!
Oh hello sundae for dinner. Cake batter & carrot cake ice cream (gluten free & vegan) with ginger cookie crumbs, fudge & coconut whipped cream :)
After, we dined on pomme frites & I met with Pavithra for beer at Burp Castle. Shhhhhhhh!!
A foggy walk from LES to Chelsea
I tried to make a christmas tree in the elevator but then I realized my phone was off. SO I had to wait for it to turn on, then by the time I did I was on the 26th floor. I pressed it again, but instead all the lights turned off. wah wah. I think security caught on to my inner Elf.

This is what I came here for

Trees don't really do that in California.
Long Island City
The Strand!
Cafe Habana corn!! Oh brother, hell yes!

Mmmm.. My days are passing in NYC and tomorrow I depart. So gotta make it count today! The plan is to venture to powerhouse, one of my faaaavorite bookstores in bk, paint by the bridge & enjoy ice cream & shake shack (again?!) with lovely friends. Weeeeee!! Goodness, I have to stop falling in love with every city I visit. New York is special though & definitely deserves an indefinite revisit.
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