Thursday, 23 September 2010

Seeking inspiration: The Art of Role Play

"When patterns are broken, new worlds emerge." ~Tuli Kupferberg

"Imagination and fiction make up more than three-quarters of our real life."~Simone Weil

Hello Dearest Devotees,

I think it was towards the end of the summer that I read Harry Potter Book 4 (The Goblet of Fire) that I first decided to explore my own imaginary world. Using Hogwarts and the rest of Harry's world as a jumping off point, I began to create an intricately detailed alternate reality, occasionally furnished with ideas from other fantasy-like books I'd read but largely full of places that I had come up with. Each place had their own wildly different culture, languages and physical environment as well as their own well established royal family. I loved being in this place that I called "my magical world" ( I know. Extremely creative :P) so much that I would spend hours of my day interacting with this place and with people and friends I'd created in this place. I would imagine full length conversations, and would sometimes even invite my siblings to join in my crazy adventures.

It was around this time that I first gained serious interest in writing novels and I'm pretty sure it was sparked by my love for the imaginary place I'd created. I desired to share this world with others and I thought that by "becoming" a character in my imaginary world, I would be able to have a special connection with the characters and therefore be better able to accurately represent them in my books. The character I chose to become is called Aury and I now have a wealth of stories that in diary format that I have collected over the years about her life. Acting as Aury was my first experience in the art of role play. I later found out that actors often use role play to get into character and to be better able to portray their characters during performances. In a similar way, role play helped me to realise that in the world I was creating in my book, Aury and all her friends are people with "real" emotions, problems and relationships and not just characters. I want my readers to be able to believe, at least for a little while, that she is real and in order for that to happen I must believe it too. Only by truly believing this will I be able to make her actions and emotions real enough that my readers will be able to see themselves in her and relate with my novel.

I believe that role play is a skill that can be used by people in general and artists in particular. Our art comes from our realms of experience and our personal realms of experience are pretty limited when you imagine all that it could be. Role play enables to expand that realm giving you the opportunity to tap into feelings and experiences you may not have otherwise had in order to draw from these experiences and create something extraordinary. Also role play can be used to help you reach your goals and ideas of the person you want to be. If used well, it could help you get a realistic idea of what it would take to become that person and maybe even let you decide if that person is really who you want to be. Finally, the art of roleplay can be used to help you understand people in your life better. It will give the chance to " walk in their shoes" and understand things from their point of view. The art of role play is so much more than a game. It is a way of letting your imagination help you see what your eyes can't.

Seeking Inspiration Assignment:

Use the art of roleplay to pretend to be someone who you could see as the opposite of you. Or step into the shoes of someone you aspire to being. Be this person for at least a day.
*Clarification edit*
In order not to freak people out I would recommend you do this on a personal day- a day in which you have a lot of personal time. Or you could just take some time out and just go through the motions of an average day in the life of your character by only pretending to do the activities.

Links I've loved

GenYwealth gives 5 weird habits that can make you rich. Hmm...

I so LOVE the Lolita Lifestyle.

These dates are soo sweet!!! .

I really like this ode to overachievers. I don't know if I'm there yet but I think I'm pretty close.

Wishful thinking is giving a free course for Creative Professionals. If you haven't signed up yet do it! It's gold.

Two pretty awesome morning routines on Zen Habits.

And its pretty random but I really love Taylor Swift's Mine and If I Die Young by The Band Perry. The colours in their videos are so beautiful.

Love you and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. Have you role played before? What for? Feel free to let me know in the comments below.
Tuesday, 14 September 2010

My Top 10: Little known quirks

Dearest Devotees,

Since I had so much fun writing yesterday's post, I decided that I would write a similar one today. This post is about the random things I like to do/ or am interested in that you might never guess was apart of my personality if you didn't know me. I love finding out unusual things about people and I am hoping that sharing my quirks with you will help you find it easier to be quirky, and maybe even help me meet people with similar (random) interests. So without further ado, here are my top 10 quirks.

1. Greek and Roman Mythology: This is why I love books like Percy Jackson. I just love how ancient societies were able to create such amazing stories to explain things that they encountered daily.

2. The Sims, especially the Sims 3. I'm not a big video games person but I really love the Sims.

3. A really odd and wide taste in music ranging from classical, to hip hop, to metal, indie rock and country.

4. Youtube (This is more of an obsession) : particularly watching youtubers like Shane Dawson, Natalie Tran of Community Channel and Charlie McDonell.

5. Avatar -the last Airbender: The cartoon not the movie.

6. Magical beings in novels in general.

7. All types of dance, gymnastics, yoga and other similar activities that involve testing the limits of your flexibility (I have a pretty wide range of movement).

8. I absolutely love singing, am a songwriter and have been told I have a nice voice, but I have no desire to become a performer. Why? Stage fright.

9. Flying does really weird things to me (the air pressure causes splitting headaches akin to those Harry might have felt through his scar) yet I continue to adore flying.

10. Psychology and any study really that helps me understand why people act the way they do.I own so many non-fiction and self help books, its obscene.

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. What are your quirks? How do you feel about them ? (I actually happen to like mine :) )Feel free to let me know in the comments below.
Saturday, 11 September 2010

My Top 10: Amazing Places I would love to live

Dearest Devotees,

Some of the following places are real. Some of them aren't. Most of them I will only ever live inhabit their confines in my dreams. Since I am unlikely to be forwarding my mail to any of these places any time soon, please indulge me as I list the top 10 places I would love to have the good fortune of calling home.

1. Hogwarts: After I read Harry Potter, I was hooked. After anxiously awaiting the arrival of my Hogwarts letter on my 10th birthday, I was devastated when, by the next morning, it had still not shown up. (I had to assume that this meant that the ability to hold things due to static cling was not, in fact, a sign of magical blood.)

2. Anthropologie: If you've never been in the store called Anthropologie I honestly cannot help you. The best way I could describe it is by saying is that it is as if they took all things indie, kitschy, craftsy, artsy and sweet and put them all in one store. I have sincerely considered moving there on separate occasions.

3. Libraries (especially large, old fashioned, public libraries): I once spent a whole summer reading books every day from 9-5 for about 3 months if memory serves. I would also take books home during those days, to read for as long as I was awake and not at the library. As you can see, I was a very odd child.

4. The world in which Percy Jackson lives: Granted it might extremely scary sometime, but how cool would it be see all the beings that Greek mythologies are made of walking and talking. Plus learning archery from a Centaur would be pretty awesome.

5. Genovia: Because with a ruler as cool and epic as Mia Thermopolis from Princess Diaries, I feel like life would be really interesting.

6. A wonderful imaginary land called Magical: A world that exists only within the confines of my mind and my novel and which you may all get to read about one day.

7. European Countryside: Be it French, Swiss or Northern Irish, I know I would be SO Happy if I could one day call such a place home. It's breathtakingly beautiful, and gives me dreams of horse back-riding with my kids in my private stables.

8. In the prairies of the Western U.S: Simply Google Colorado. One day I will have an artistic retreat here for at least 2 weeks. Until then I will have to satisfy myself with imagining myself through fields covered in yellow flowers.

9. New York: Fashion Institute of New York. The Museum of Modern Art. Broadway. The Energy. The Life. I could go on but I won't because I don't think I need to.

10. A Palace in a world in which Dr. Reid exists: The little girl in me has always wondered what it would be like to be a real princess and live in a palace...

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. Where would you live (if there were absolutely no constraints with regards to time or reality)? What would you be your dream place to be? Feel free to let me know in the comments below.
Thursday, 9 September 2010

Artist's Corner: Poetry 101 by 8 year old Aury

Hi Darlings!

So I was rooting through a pile of papers while unpacking earlier this week and stumbled upon the first poem I ever wrote. I got a kick out of it, and thought that I should share it with you guys. I was 8 so this poem is probably the equivalent of basic doodling and scribbles by future artists.


Blue is the colour of the sea
Blue is the colour of the sky
Blue is the colour that we feel
when our happiness goes sailing by

Blue is the colour of the lake
Blue is the colour for goodness sake
that shows what we can be
But above all, isn't it pretty?

What can I say? Blue was my favorite colour back then and I just loved waxing poetic about it.

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So, do you have any of your old art work/ writings that you have stumbled on years later? How do you feel when you see these things? What does it tell you about that time? Feel free to let me know in the comments below.
Monday, 6 September 2010

A Day in the Life: Where I am now

Dearest Devotees,

I could make tons of excuses for not posting for the past couple of weeks and not informing that I wasn't going to be. The thing is that at the end of the day they would all be just that... excuses. I am sorry that a year in I haven't established some sort of blogging routine yet, but this is because this blog really is an extension of myself. When I write here, I give you all a glance into my mind and soul, and I pour myself into each and every post. That's why when I burnt myself out during summer school ( I know, it was too much school) I just needed to stop doing stuff. I sort of took a forced digital sabbatical because where I went, I had no access internet through my mac for 3 weeks! I did blog a little while there because I was able to convince someone else to let me use their computer a little, but the connection was really slow so I had to stay up really late (think 3 am) to blog. Eventually, I just couldn't do it anymore, and spent the rest of the time just hanging out with my siblings and parents, playing the Sims 3 on my Mac and reading amazing books like Mistaken Identity.

I also decided to take some time to re-evaluate myself and have discovered that I have changed so much over the past year, I have outgrown a lot of the things that used to define me. The original plan I had for this blog no longer suits the person I am today. When I first started I thought I would be mostly a fashion blogger with some lifestyle tips thrown into the mix, but I've realised that I see and enjoy fashion more as art and as form of self-expression through personal style. I am only interested in trends in so much as they tell me about large groups of people and enable me to understand them better through their clothes (Costume Analysis). So fashion on this blog is going to be mostly about personal style, design and fashion as a form of costuming. Also, this blog is going to continue being mostly focused on the creative lifestyle and artful living. I am really interested in lifestyle design right now, and I would love to share with you guys all the ideas I have on living life more creatively.

I will do this by writing about different subgroups of people who follow their dreams with total abandon. I will show you how to incorporate art into your daily lives and how to find inspiration everywhere. I will help you find your muse, and develop and sustain a relationship with her. I will help you see find mentors and role models, people who have been there and show you that it can be done. I will help you to gain understanding of yourself and of those around you so that you have a better grasp of human emotion for your art as well as for your relationships with people. My aim is to help you live life more fully because I've realised that having a bunch of things and a long list of abstract achievements do not make a full life. In the end it is the people you meet, the experiences you have and the relationships you build that give you true happiness.

I know it sounds like I have it all figured out, but I don't. I will be the first person to admit I don't know it all. However, I am extremely willing to devote myself to seeking the answers to every question I encounter. I want to know more and I promise that as I learn more. So really if you think about it I am taking this journey with you.

I am writing for all you lovely creative and artistic people striving to live a life full of inspiration.
This is my purpose.

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. Are there any topics related to artistic living that you would like me to explore? Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments below.
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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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