Monthly Archives: April 2013

stab at design: header & watermark

look, i’m a design noob.

if you were to sit me down in illustrator, i would probably glare at you with confusion and ask for a custard donut instead. i’m a photoshop/lightroom kinda gal.

with that said, mad respect for designers. i’ve just spent the past few hours scouring custom fonts and messing around in illustrator. working with designers for over a year at my agency job inspired me though so i figured i’d give designing a new website header and watermark a stab. i ended up going with #2 below for the header. originally, i just had plain italic text which is the iteration shown in the bottom window. i can’t believe the time that goes into design even for the simplest item.

Screen Shot 2013-04-28 at 10.07.57 PM

also played around with watermarks. i’ve developed an affinity towards brackets. i guess that’s fitting since i bracket almost way too much when shooting. here’s a photo of janelle monae at coachella last weekend with the new watermark.


besides the novice design frenzy, there’s a lot to catch up on this blog. since my last post, i’ve shot both phoenix and postal service in pomona (separate dates). also covered coachella weekend two for brooklynvegan.

since getting back on monday from coachella, i’ve been really sick with a fever and respiratory infection. thankfully, the fever is gone now but i’m still feeling pretty rough. the doc took swabs of my throat but since it’s viral, basically it was like, “sorry girl, deal with it. antibiotics won’t do anything unless it’s a bacterial infection.” okay, maybe my doctor didn’t say that exactly but i was feeling pretty desperate to speed up the recovery process considering the mounds of work to be done. let’s just say that the recipe for being miserable would probably contain working on multiple deadlines with a fever. i was also annoyed with wasting 2 hours at urgent care to find out my body is stupid and will just have to tough it out. whatever, virus. you’re the worst. no, actually — whoever played that obnoxious game on their phone with the sound on in the hospital waiting room is probably the worst. seriously, are you that clueless? put that shit on mute, man.

on that note, going to grab some sleep before a full day tomorrow. my inbox terrifies me.

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Food Porn: Eat Well LA Shoot

i had so much fun shooting these food photos of eat well LA recently for gilt city. i’m pretty happy with how they turned out. i mean, i was basically drooling. if you live in LA, this meal delivery service is worth checking out. for a busy person, this is far healthier than picking up fast food or microwaving a frozen burrito. or, if you’re like me and fail at cooking pasta (nobody told me linguine has a longer cooking time than spaghetti), this is a cheaper option than eating out every day.

eat well LA

eat well LA

eat well LA

eat well LA

the salad was one of the freshest and tastiest i’ve had. the beats added a nice texture and sweetness.

eat well LA

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The Thermals: LA Gig, New Album, Vinyl Reissues

shooting a band that you last saw while in high school* can really make a person feel old. while i did experience a tinge of age induced panic at their recent LA show at the echoplex, the thermals quickly pushed that aside with an euphoric, nostalgic high. something about those frenzied guitar hooks, steady baselines and crashing cymbals dissolves the bullshit around you. these are the songs that you shout out while driving, in the shower, while cooking, whenthefuckever.

the thermals @ echoplex, LA 3/18/13

last month, the thermals reissued limited edition, colored vinyl of their classic discography on sub pop recordsmore parts per millionfuckin’ a, and the body, the blood, the machine —  all three albums still hold up and are definitely worth their replay value. they also have a new record, desperate ground, out april 16th but you can actually buy the album now on saddle creek records and you’ll be able to download it instantly before the release date. they’ll also ship it from their online store right when you buy it.

when i heard my old favorites at the echoplex show last month, i couldn’t help but close my eyes and just smile even after all these years. whenever i had a bad day or felt like someone tried to crush my spirit, the thermals’ video for “a pillar of salt” cheered me up. it picked me right up and i felt ready to conquer the world and just wreck havoc. we’re young only once, after all. we shouldn’t be afraid to take risks even if it means potential failure. their songs charge you up to be different and take action for what you believe in. this is not meek music. this is music that makes you want to speak up, do something, and live.

i covered their los angeles show for prefix. you can see more photos here. so much crowd surfing madness. :]

the thermals @ echoplex, LA 3/18/13

the thermals @ echoplex, LA 3/18/13

the thermals @ echoplex, LA 3/18/13

*one of my favorites was probably when they played with cursive and chin up chin up. such a good lineup. i caught the san francisco show at the fillmore, i believe.

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Racial Threats & Plea for Change

as a first generation immigrant, i’ve seen my family through some trying times. for every kind person i meet that restores my faith in humanity, there’s always another that leaves me fuming and wondering how our species survived this far.

i called my mom the other night to catch up and hear about her day. she works 6 days a week which includes working one day at a bay area chinese restaurant. over some coupon dispute that wasn’t even her fault (just following the owner’s instructions), some customer left in a huff, continued to call the restaurant and harass her with racist threats. oh, specifics? he threatened, “you better get ready to run because i’m going to call immigration. i’m going to call the cops on you.”

never mind that the harassment stemmed from a $2 difference that was out of my mom’s control.

never mind that my mom was just doing her job as instructed. if anything, she was doing more than obligated because when this was escalated to the boss, he simply told her to tell the customer that he wasn’t there and to not provide his name or contact information to the customer demanding information. she was basically forced to take the brunt of the customer’s verbal abuse. such cowardice and awful business management.

the phone calls got so frequent and ridiculous that they were disrupting business. the line was tied up (no incoming to-go calls could connect) and my mother couldn’t serve other customers while dealing with the bullshit. eventually the owner conceded to my mother asking for the customer’s contact information so that they could call him back. you see, the owner doesn’t speak english so he had his son call the customer later.

my mom doesn’t know what exactly they discussed but she did receive a call from the disgruntled customer afterwards ‘apologizing.’ he simply said that he was sorry for his tone and reassured her that he wasn’t going to call immigration or the cops. OH WHY THANK YOU, YOU CONDESCENDING PIECE OF SHIT. never mind that we’ve never been illegal immigrants and have valid passports. he should’ve been worried my mother didn’t call the cops on his racist ass for repeated harassment.

my parents are working class and i’m fucking proud of it. during high school and some of college, i used to be slightly ashamed and embarrassed that they worked customer service type jobs. i’d compare them to my friends’ parents with business jobs or colleagues in the art world and feel self conscious. especially when i first moved to LA where wealth is worshipped and rich kids run amuck. however, now i realize and appreciate how much my parents have accomplished. in china, my dad was an english teacher and my mom worked as chemist. they sacrificed their jobs, lifestyles, and family (everyone else besides my immediate family is in china) to move to a completely foreign country in pursuit of a better future. i’m forever grateful for that bravery and it inspires me to fight harder.

anyway, what i’m getting at is– i know it’s pointless trying to talk sense to people that are capable of gross mistreatment towards others but it’s difficult to see my mother put up with this on a daily basis. she works hard enough and she just wants to retire. dealing with mistreatment regularly can really break your spirit and i admire my mother’s strength to persevere through injustices like this without developing a victim mentality or becoming an ugly natured human being in return.

what are we supposed to do though? accept that some people are just going to be crazy and awful beyond reasoning so we just let the insults fly? we don’t seek these confrontations, we’re placed in them. back in high school, i remember just crossing the sidewalk when someone in a passing car shouted, “hey gook! go home!” wtf, that’s not even the right ethnic slur and this was in northern california for fuck’s sake– we’re not even in the south.

i believe in standing up against mistreatment but there’s too much crazy in the world to fight against. we can’t fight every battle but letting the abuse occur without calling it out seems wrong. no matter which reaction you choose, you’re left exhausted.

so this is what i ask of you– strive to be a kind human being. be as considerate as you can to others because you don’t know the pains and obstacles they’ve encountered in the past or even presently. i know nobody is perfect, but please ask yourself if your actions could cause suffering before opening your mouth or doing something questionable. this doesn’t just go for racial prejudice but for any interaction. be nice to the person making your drink even if they mess up– you never know what kind of day they had. their friend could’ve just passed away. practice tolerance and kindness.

all in all though, you’ll always have friends and family that remind you everything will be ok in the end. on that note, here’s a photo of me giving my mom a kiss and telling her, “yo mom, haterz gawn hate.”

happy mothers day

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