Tag Archives: high school

Love of Making

#cover U #magazine

Where is joy? I’ve been struggling with this. Studying art as an undergraduate can make you either a robot for craft or concept. And even if you excel at both something feels missing. I think it’s love.

I’ve never attended a critique where the love an artist puts into a piece is discussed or perceived. Instead we drill down into the formal and conceptual aspects of the piece. I think people get uncomfortable with love. And talking about love under the umbrella of art feels ambiguous.

Recently I had a conversation with a friend and they left me with this quote from Rainer Maria Rilke’s “Letters to a Young Poet”:

“You ask whether your verses are any good. You ask me. You have asked others before this. You send them to magazines. You compare them with other poems, and you are upset when certain editors reject your work. Now (since you have said you want my advice) I beg you to stop doing that sort of thing. You are looking outside, and that is what you should most avoid right now. No one can advise or help you – no one. There is only one thing you should do. Go into yourself.”

So what I’ve been insisting myself to do is this: encourage my love for making. My love for putting pen to paper. My love for thinking. My love for the process. My intense desire to create a window to the world.

So to all the artists and tender creatures out there; peace be with your heart, soul and weary hands.

Go get your love back!


Tagged , , , , , ,

Learning to be Fearless


Today’s post is brought to you by Paris. This was a blog that was written not too long ago for the Reruns Consignment Boutique Blog, but everything in it still rings true! So go grab yourself a cup of joe or hot tea and read away!

For years I limited myself when it came to wardrobe choices, probably from a fear of making “mistakes” and then having stupid kids at school making me pay for them. I wore everything from Chacos to Toms to Northface.

In high school its an unspoken contest to see who can reach perfection, when in reality those stuck up preps will never brush perfection with their finger tips. And you know why? Because they are just as scared as me of “messing up” in the world of fashion. The funny thing about this is that fashion should not be scary at all. Fashion is a way of expressing how you feel inside. Fashion can also be a form of therapy because it forces you to look inside yourself and interpret who you are through what you wear.

Now that I think about it that is kind of intimidating! And I’m sure that most people don’t think of fashion as something that goes that deep. But as the author and Harvard Professor Cornel West stated, “Its the person who wears the clothes. The soul. The spirit. The body inside the attire. That’s where style comes from.”

What if every person in the world dressed like themselves? Do you know what I mean? What if every person felt comfortable enough to express all of themselves in the open by how they dressed? What a wonderfully interesting world we would live in! I know for a fact I would just want to sit out on the sidewalk for hours and watch people pass me by.

So after two ho hum years in high school I finally cracked, broke down my junior year and decided to take a risk. I was so tired of not becoming myself. At first it was difficult because my school has a dress code but I took it as a challenge. So after reading the school dress code word for word online I set off to become a distinct person not at all concerned about making myself appealing. All I wanted was to say something real, be noticed. So slowly but surely I started breaking every fashion rule I knew. I wore different patterns together. I wore high-waisted long skirts (not commonly appealing to the opposite sex). I wore pink neon fishnet tights. I wore socks that didn’t match. And all sorts of other fashion no nos. You might be thinking “but didn’t people make fun of you?” Of course they did! But I knew the secret to surviving high school: Project confidence and don’t give a flying flip!

After a month or so of my craziness I started having random people come up to me in the hallways and tell me how much they loved and admired my sense of style. Wow! Who knew that people would actually admire originality! This has been one of the most eye opening experiences of my life. All of a sudden I realized my deep passion to become an artist and I started painting my soul out in addition to creating one of a kind window displays for Reruns. I felt a growing feeling that I was doing what I was meant to do, which is by far the most incredible feeling that one can feel. Who knew that my life could completely change just by changing what I put on in the morning.

Now I’m not saying that you should go home and throw out all your clothes and take a walk on the wild side. All I’m trying to do is encourage you to take a small risk. Throw caution to the wind for a day. Whether it be wearing black and brown together or wearing those sexy red heels you’ve been hiding in your closet. I promise you, it will feel incredible. Bon voyage!

paris woodhull

Tagged , , , ,