I fought the scissors, but the scissors won

Yes that was a Clash reference. So about a month ago, I decided to cut my own hair. If you remember, I mentioned a few posts back that I had had it cut quite short, which meant after a while it was bound to grow into a mess. I needed to let it grow back, therefore suffering through the various stages of growth was an inevitable necessity. Having pixie hair was fun, but I missed having hair over my ears and around my face – force of habit, what can I say? So I went for it, I took the pair of scissors that had been taunting me for a while and…chopped. My first attempt wasn’t all that bad, but since I couldn’t see the play going on at the back of my head, some actors went astray aka I forgot a few longer strands and it wasn’t a super clean cut. Since I was determined to finish what I had started, I did my best to fix my mess. Not bad, I ended up with a decent result. Skip a few weeks and there I was in my bathroom staring at my almost black mane, this dark mass of hair I’ve always liked but also always wanted to change. Contradiction, oh how familiar art thou. So as usual, I just said “what the hell”, pretended I was a hair colourist, bought a bunch of odd smelling tubes and experimented in my bathroom while my mum watched amused and a tiny bit frightened. Well who wouldn’t be if they were watching someone risk going bald, or whatever might happen in the obscure dimension of hair? Success, I ended up a ginger, a long time dream of mine. It wasn’t a uniform colour job but it was still really amusing to behold – going from dark and mysterious Wednesday Addams to peppy retro ginger isn’t something you witness every day, is it? A few days passed and this morning, waking up at 5 am due to my incessant cough from the super horribly timed flu I caught, I got up, looked in the mirror, looked to my right and there they were…the scissors. They called me, whispered my name – or one of them anyway – and my hands just grabbed them off the table. They were there, I was too… I couldn’t stop myself, the urge to chop had returned and…I now have a fringe (or bangs if you’re unfamiliar with the term). I’ve never had one before so I must say it takes time getting used to having something on my forehead, or seeing my reflection staring back at me in a 60s inspired look. Red lipstick, where are you my friend?

Conclusion, this summer was quite eventful, especially when it comes to my head, both intellectually and aesthetically; I added stuff in and chopped off another bunch, nothing to my displeasure, an adventure I’m quite glad I had. However, I think it’s time someone took away those scissors…

No lies in white eyes

Many people have been asking me recently why I draw faces with no eyes, so here it goes. It’s not a gothic thing or a creepy horror however you want to label it style. There is a reason, one I don’t hide behind but stand by.

Ever since I was a child, all I’ve heard was that eyes are the keys to the soul, they tell your story in a raw, almost painful clarity, in shades of brown, green or blue. That may be true. However, our story is also marked in every line in our face and body, every wrinkle, sunspot, freckle, scar, smile, movement of our eyebrows, jaw and nose. Our stories are safely tucked in every skin fold and every protruding bone and until we stop focusing on the undeniable beauty of eyes, we’ll always miss out on the equally mesmerizing dance of the rest of our being, the way everything moves and stays still, the way little details change with time and experiences. I don’t draw eyes because eyes tell too much, more than I can ever tell with a brush or a pen no matter the precision I can reach. I can draw detailed irises and mysterious pupils, with iridescent greens and watery blues, but I am no clear voyant magician, and I do not pretend to see souls bare, I observe and replicate what my own eyes want to see, understand or are able to distinguish. That is all, the simple truth behind the void, and I hope I do that well enough, because I truly do it wholeheartedly.

The art of perseverance

I draw. I’ve been drawing since the first day someone gave me a pencil, the first time my hand was able to clasp that piece of wood with a coloured core trapped inside, warm, waiting to spread its magic. I often feel like that thin hidden stick, still waiting, even though I still draw, even though I’m not hiding. I’m that log of colour that just can’t wait to reach paper, to become, to be.

It took me years to make my work public, to push it into the light for public scrutiny, endanger my tiny almost non-existant ego with the not so soft noises that escape the mouths and keyboards of onlookers. I draw thoughts, emotions, fleeting passions and ephemeral pleads, and I showcase it so that people too disillusioned to understand the fragility of each stroke can point, question, disregard or ignore what part of me wants to say, while a few urge me onward, push me further, the beautiful ones, the tender souls that understand the deep connection between the nib of a pen and the unsaid.

I’ve often contemplated giving up, or keeping it all to myself, for it’s a part of me and not a whole, a few centimeters of heart and a few drops of soul, but then it hits me that someone out there is thankful, another appreciative, a few even understanding, some possibly detest my work which is quite a pleasurable thought for it means I stir up something brutal in them, animalistic maybe, and some more always expectant of what else my fingers can produce with that derisive twig of colour. I keep going for those, the few who dare express something, whatever it is, those who dare nod even though it can be difficult to stand by someone and their cause, even though understanding is a private notion, a secret twitch of the mind, a comforting little bell ringing in a distant corner spelling in morse: “you know”.

A slice of happy

There comes a day in every person’s life, hopefully not too late, when they open their eyes and realize: you don’t need much to be happy, very little really, much less than you ever thought possible, much less than seemed plausible.

They try to sell you dreams, the wrong ones, the long ones, filled with glitter and champagne, all fun and no pain, hiding the truth in magazine cuts, movies and songs painting pictures too vivid to be real, images of lives we never get to live or feel. Happiness isn’t found in high heels and overpriced steak dinners, it’s not hidden in bad radio music and drunken parties, in cheap motel rooms or expensive electronics, it’s in those moments at the cash register, right before the bill arrives, that moment before the dream becomes too real and dies, when the steak is still appetite, the party still expectations, the room still neat and the game still a brand new toy to be plugged in and soon worn out. Happiness is in the thought of happiness, the moment before, the seconds that lead up to what we think is true joy. Happiness is in the head, in the slow buildup, the heart’s crescendo, an illusion soon gone to be resuscitated with yet another dream.

Don’t be fooled, this isn’t a sad post, no bitterness here or hopeless wanderings of the mind; this is a reminder that happiness is self-made, one that’s present before the material things arrive, before the media’s intervention, before money is thrown and the mind drowned in alcoholic hallucinations. Happiness is everywhere, ephemeral but continuous, abstract yet concrete, misconstrued but reachable by every single seeker of magic. Happiness is free, it’s in the eyes of that one person who stands by you, it’s in the heartbeat of one that leans in closer, in every sunrise and every sunset right before each day begins and at the close of every tiresome string of hours. It’s in every expectation and every success, in each new experience and every resurfacing memory. Happiness is more human than you’ll ever know, the most beautiful illusion, the most magical reality. I’m happy, hope you’re happy too.