Monday, 23 August 2010

Life's Little Lessons: Just believe

'Promises mean everything when you're little and the world is so big'

Everclear's Wonderful

The world is huge, experiences range from microscopically tiny to undeniably life-changing. Life is like a stormy sea with alternating periods of deceptive calm and back-breaking turmoil, and in this sea that is life, each person is one ridiculously small and powerless boat. In order to ride out the storm, we need to have an anchor, something to hold onto and to keep us from sinking in times of great trial. Sir Thomas More said,

'I'm anchored, to my principles'

-A Man For All Seaons

In times of great turmoil, our beliefs are whaxt should keep us grounded. I am not even saying solely religious beliefs either. I just feel strongly that we should believe in something good outside of ourselves. A boat does not have a brake, something within itself to help it face the strength of the sea- it has an anchor, something outside of itself that is rooted and strong enough to support the ship until calm is restored. Even in times of calm, the presence of the anchor gives the captain reassurance. Having a belief in something powerful and beautiful reassures you in times of calm and gives you something to fall back on in hard times.

I believe in God, love and hope. I am not blindly optimistic; I do not think that everything is perfect or that bad things do not and will not happen. I do believe though that somehow, in the end things will be okay, and that all I need is the strength to see the situation through. Rarely do people go looking for hardship, but it exists any way so the best thing you can do is face it. I am a strong believer of the whole '' what doesn't kill you makes you stronger approach" and this, combined with the hope of a better day, keeps me going each day.

So if you don't already, I really suggest believing in something. Let it be something larger and more powerful than yourself. Let it be something than is immortal and is unlikely to be hurt by the currents of change. But most importantly, let it be something that resonates with you.

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. What is your anchor and what are your beliefs? Feel free to let me know in the comments below.
Sunday, 22 August 2010

The Blogger Inside Tag

Photo from: A winged pearl

I am

A girl of many dreams and tons of ambition.

Yet I often feel like a lone autumn leaf in the wind.

I believe in God.

I believe in love and hope.

I am

A person with a mission

An ultimate dream to reach self-fulfillment and understanding of the world around me

But also to successfully build myself as a brand

And to create my dream company a clothing company called Vanille.

You may be wondering, "Who is Aury?"

Well, she started out as the main character of my first novel.

A person I've role-played for several years of my childhood

And still continue to do so occasionally today.

I love travelling and have grown up all around the world.

I love airplanes although I am afraid of heights and feel very much at home in airports.

I love magic and the whole idea of an alternate world.

From Greek and Roman Mythology, to tales of Hogwarts and shows like Avatar all these things intrigue me.

I love reading and I adore libraries.

I love the Internet because it is a wealth of information just waiting to be discovered.

I love social media because it keeps us all connected.

I love art, music and literature.

Art to me is everything that uses imagination and creativity to make it come alive.

I love fashion design and costuming because of their process.

An intangible idea and/or message is turned into clothing by the designer, identified with by the consumer and transmitted to others by the wearer.

I love how you need to have an analytical, critical and artistic mind in order to create a successful design.

I love culture and diversity.

I stand for tolerance and understanding.

Home to me is wherever my heart is.

Wherever my family is but also wherever I feel most at peace.

Deconstruction is a huge part of my world.

The deconstructed and disjoint nature of this post is a true portrayal of my mind.

I feel like my mind is a jungle.

A thick but thriving marshy forest full of ideas, questions and answers.

The problem is not a dearth of resources but one of logical connections and pathways to the resources.

If only I could find the way.

This is the real me.

Trying to make sense of what makes my reality so that I can share with you.

I am Aury.

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. This is a blogger inside blogger tag that I have just created. The rules are as such:

1. Do a blog post in any format that you like and that you think accurately portrays who you are.

2. Tell us what you think makes up who you are. It can be as long or as short as you want.

3. Tag 3 bloggers and pass it on (I tag Dori from Dori the Giant , Krissy from Shimmer Like Gold, and Debbie from Debbie: The College Years )

P.P.S. So let me know what you think. Feel free to introduce yourselves to me in the comments below.

Monday, 16 August 2010

Dreaming of the Show: The Abuser from Love the Way You Lie

When I first started doing the Dreaming of the Show posts, I said that I would not only design for characters from traditional plays like Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet, but that I would also design for characters from popular culture such as TV shows and music videos for relatively recent songs. I've always had a thing for literary analysis but after my first class in media literacy and analysis I've been hooked. For those who are unfamiliar with the field, media literacy is a field that analyzes, evaluates and creates messages in a variety of form- from print to video. I like to think of it as a way of understanding society and people by unearthing the hidden meanings in modern media, movies, music and entertainment. The understanding gained from this analysis is the first step to accurately portraying a character through the costume.

Ever since I heard the song Love the Way You Lie performed by Eminem and Rihanna, I have loved it for its depth and meaning. It has a very strong and clear message about domestic abuse and the shock effect of the song's presentation actually forces people to listen to the message. Before the real video came out I had some ideas of how I would have liked the video to be. The way in which I would have liked to portray the character of the abuser in particular was important to me and this is what I will share with you in this post.

Character: The Abuser from Love the Way You lie- Eminem ft Rihanna

Time and Place I would set it in: Modern day Western World

Plot summary:

The story tells the complicated and often misunderstood relationship of the abuser and the abused in domestic violence cases. It talks about how both parties are aware of the toxic nature of their relationship but are still unable to leave. On some level they both know that their relationship is incredibly dangerous, but they love the drama and the intensity too much to walk away. The abuser claims that he hates what he does but that he is so dependent on their relationship that he cannot leave it and when he gets mad at her, the intensity of his rage clouds his judgment so much that it turns him into someone he cannot recognize. He claims that he will change and that he will never hurt the abused again, but both of them realize that it's all a lie and that he won't change. In the third verse the abuser goes through a state of denial with the abused by saying that its possible their relationship really isn't so bad, and that maybe its so intense because of their intense personalities but at the end of everything he admits that he knows that he is lying and that if she ever tries to escape from him he will kill her. Throughout the song the abused supports his statements by repeating that it’s alright if he watches her suffer because she loves the way he lies.

Character Summary:

To me, the abuser seems like someone who truly seems to have two widely different personalities: a public and a private one. I imagine that his public personality makes him seem like a normal guy. He'd probably be very charismatic and even personable. He'd seem very put together and self aware with a clear goal and ambition in life and all of these amazing qualities would make him very appealing to women. He'd probably be a charmer and romance them into his life, lulling them into a false sense of security. Then once they feel like they have found the perfect man, he would slowly start to change. I don't think he would brutally hurt them at first. I imagine he would probably start with by verbally assaulting them/ pushing them around, but before you know it would escalate until she's become too scared to run away.

Keywords to Describe Him

Public persona- charismatic, well dressed, put together, cheerful, friendly, kind and stable

Private persona- menacing, frigtening, domineering, unstable, overcome with rage, monsterous.

Key Elements to His Style

Checked Shirts

Classic Blue Jeans

Classic Mens button down shirt in neutrals and light blue

Tailored Suits worn with close collared shirts and ties

Italian style leather shoes

Quality timeless watch

Large but simple silver ring

Inconspicuous piercings that can be hidden under most clothes.

The Abuser to me:

Note: The pictures below are not of people who I think could be abusers. I do not intend to offend anyone. The sole purpose of the pictures is to give you an idea of the contrast between the abusers two personalities. It is to show that the abuser may seem normal and even successful, enviable and charming to most people but that this persona is shed behind closed doors and this is symbolically shown through the unbuttoning of the shirt and the shedding of the jacket, tie and belt to reveal his once hidden piercings and formerly contained muscles that are now emphasized with the aid of the neutral vest.

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. How do you think the abuser should have been portrayed in the music video of Love the Way You Lie ? Have you watched the video? What do you think about it? Feel free to let me know in the comments below.

Photos from: We Heart it

Thursday, 12 August 2010

How to know if you're a Music Producer

Dearest Devotees,

In the How to Know if You're a Songwriter post I mentioned I would do a couple more music related posts, because of how much music means to me. I really like doing these kind of posts because they give you an insight into the person I really am, and all the things that make up an average day in my life. I also really love these posts because they give me the opportunity to connect with other like-minded spirits and also to appreciate the diversity of characteristics and characters that make up my devotee base. Much like the previously mentioned post on being a songwriter, the things I list below are just characteristics I've noticed in people who are/ want to be music producers. So without further ado here is my list of ways to know if you have music producer potential:

When you hear a song for the first time a video you have instantaneously created begins to play in your head.

You sometimes check up lyrics and analyze them for plot possibilities and video potential

You predict how well a song will do on the charts and at award shows.

You are always very interested in new musical talent.

You try to learn as much as you can about every aspect of music, constantly.

If you are in school you can probably be found taking widely different music and/ or dances classes at the same time.

When your friends invite you to karaoke you give them performance advice and sometimes critique their vocal quality.

You find audio engineering, music theory and even music history oddly fascinating.

You are always clued in with the latest innovations in technology and programming.

You manage crises well.

Business is not your foe.

You know what’s happening in the music industry as its happening in the industry.

After seeing a band perform for the first time you already know their image, style and genre.

Beats are constantly on the end of your finger tips.

You think life should have a soundtrack and may have created a few playlists for important events , describing them.

You know the names of all the top producers in the music industry.

When you hear about a music video for the first time you ask for the label/ producer not the artist

You love bringing music to life.

You critique videos that you see on TV (or youtube) and sometimes envision how you could have done it better.

You appreciate all the different genres of music and sometimes draw inspiration from two widely different genres, to create the next big thing.

You know that songwriting and producing through social networking are two major ways to enter the industry.

You try to create the perfect environment and medium to transfer the emotional quality of the music from the artist to the audience.

You are always on the lookout for unexpectedly amazing collaborations between artists in the music industry.

You are aware that music production is really tasking, and sometimes not as glamorous as it’s made out to be but you love it anyway.

Photos from: We Heart

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. What qualities/characteristics do you think a music producer should have? Are there any music producers out there? Feel free to let me know in the comments below.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Renovate Your Life: Prioritising, Reorganising and Outsourcing

My Darling Devotees,
Now that you have re-organised your room, you may be revelling in the freedom and joy that comes from the ability to know where your things are when you need them (I know I am), and may also be looking for other ways to extend this freedom to the rest of your life. Well, I'm all about productivity right now and making the best use of the time that you do have in a day in order to a avoid ending up with a foot long daily to-do- list, so I have devised a system for turning the conquering of each day into a more manageable feat. Warning: some of these things may be hard to hear coming from me but these are the lessons that I've learn't the hard way. I only tell you these lessons, because I have found that they actually work. Also, this process ( like most Renovate Your Life processes) needs time investment, so make yourself comfortable as you work through it (possibly grabbing a cup of iced tea and playing some soothing music), at your own leisurely pace.

1. Identifying:
Identify all the things that you do in an average day, week, month and year, that take up a lot of your time. If you have to pick, I would start with what you do in an average day, because it usually gives you a pretty good idea of where your time goes on a large scale. Write all these things down. Also, identify all of your major and minor long term and short term goals (all the things you want to do, that would probably lead you to the kind of person you want to be). Write all these down too. Make sure they are in separate columns or are at least in separate lists.

2. Evaluating:
Compare the two lists. How much of the stuff that you want to do do you actually do each day? How much time do you spend doing things you don't love/don't really care about? Why? Evaluate your goals. How much time do you spend working towards them each day? Are all your goals still concurrent with the person you are? What are the really large goals? Can you break them down into smaller ones? After answering all these questions, you should have found the goals that are are actually on track with who you are, and should also have gotten rid of/modified the goals that no longer appeal to you.

Divide your remaining major activities/goals into 3 major categories:
Things you have to do, but don't particularly like/are not really good at: (e.g. chores you don't like, etc)
Things you like/love to do, that are important to you
Things you don't have to do/ are not really good at, but that are important to achieving your goals.

Arrange these as much as possible according to level of importance (something along the lines of 1 star for least, 3 stars for most).

Note: I only mention these 3 categories, because really life is too short to spend time doing things you don't like, don't need to do, and that are not important to you ( or your loved ones)

Reorganise your schedule by doing the following:
Allocate the most time to the things that are most important, that you are good at and that you love. Spend as little time as possible doing the things that you are either not good at, or that are important but that you don't like doing.You can do this by only working on the things that you need to do but that you are not good at, during your least productive times in the day. For example, if you are a writer, but you know that it is near impossible for you to get any work done during the afternoon from 1-4pm, you could use that time for your errands. By doing this you will be getting all the things you need to get done in a day, by using your least creatively productive time for something else that you need to get done, instead of wasting it by making mind to work yourself work through your low productivity periods. Also, I've noticed that errands become a lot more appealing when I am sick of doing school work, so I am more willing to do my errands at these points in time.

Refer to the list of things that you are not good at/don't like but that need to be done, and that are not really important to you, as well as the things that you are not good at, but that need to be done in order to achieve your goals. For these two categories I suggest outsourcing as much as possible. You are only one person, you cannot do everything yourself, and even if you could I don't think you would want to. If you're not good at taxes or finances get help during tax period or, if you can, get a financial advisor or make use of a finacial assisting program like If you are a budding director but for the life you can not figure out how to dress your cast, team up with a budding costumer.
In fact, when I was thinking about how to outsource things I need help with, I went back to my list of goals, and began to look at the intermediary goals I had added because I thought that I would need to do that in order to achieve another goal. After evaluating some of these goals, I realised that I would not mind outsourcing a great deal of them, if it would mean I would get to spend more time doing things that I was really passionate about. After realising this, I was able to make my goals a lot clearer and more streamlined and defined. I was able to identify the things that were most important to me and separate them from the things that I would be interested in trying out at some point simply for novelty's sake. For example, I was able to realise that creating the storyline and storyboard for a music video was a lot more interesting to me than actually filming and editing so I will team up with a friend of mine to work on the video rather than filming, editing and creating the video all by myself. This doesn't mean I'll never do the actual filming myself. It just means that it isn't one of the top things I want to do with my time right now.

By going through this process I was able to find out where all my time goes in a day and figure out where I want it to go. I was able to find my priorities and make sure that I was actively working towards them. But most importanitly I've learnt how to use my time so I don't feel like I'm running against a ticking clock.
It's all about making the best use of your time.

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. Have you ever outsourced certain activities? Do you regularly evaluate your goals? Feel free to let me know in the comments below.

P.P.S. I hinted that I would be gone for a week because of finals and because of travelling home. I'm home now, and although I'm a little jet-lagged I'm back to the blogosphere after focusing on my finals and doing really well on them :) Thanks for sticking with me through this darlings. I love you!
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An Ordinary Girl's World is a blog for stylish and artistic teens, college students and young adults, creatively finding their way in this world. Its about expressing yourself through your personal style, your lifestyle, your relationships and friendships.
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Hello! I am Frannie a.k.a Frances Anne and I am a 21 year old Catholic Missionary. I am Nigerian but have lived all over the world and I currently live and serve in the U.S. I love God, others and life in general. I bubble over with joy everyday and would love to share my joy with you.
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