Philly’s Got “Good Medicine”

I’m beginning to learn that Philly’s actually not so bad of a place to live. We have a pretty big art scene and I’m not just talking about the Philadelphia Museum of Art. There are tons of smaller art galleries around the city that I’ve passed thousands of times without even knowing and so many new art installations. Let’s take South Street for example.

If you’re not one to venture to South St. often or are a first time visitor, upon first glance, it’s just a crowded street with an odd variety of people, where cars drive around blasting music, and the smell of Jim’s Steaks fills the air, but there may be some hidden treasures.

What you may not know, I sure didn’t, is that 4th & South St. actually begins what is known as Fabric Row. Apparently, this has been around for about 100 years and I never even knew about it, but I’m so glad I do now. Six blocks of boutiques, art supplies, restaurants, tattoo shops, and Paradigm Gallery & Studio.

Good Medicine - Alex Yanes & Dennis McNett

Dennis McNett, myself, Alex Yanes standing in front of “The Feels”

My discovery of Fabric Row came from my search for Paradigm Gallery & Studio, an artistic space for both the visual and performing arts, and its open to the public. I had recently seen a story on Instagram of Alex Yanes, Miami native and super talented artist, working on some new pieces for an art exhibit that would be displayed in Philly, so I HAD to go see it.

“Good Medicine” is the name of the exhibit currently on display. It’s a unique collaboration between Alex Yanes and Dennis McNett, both known for their wooden sculptures amongst other forms of art. If you haven’t heard of either, I strongly recommend checking out their work. A mix of vibrant colors and ridiculous detail, it’s a must-see.

Dennis Mcnett's Big Mary’s Resurrection

Dennis Mcnett’s Big Mary’s Resurrection

I was lucky enough to enter the studio with both artists standing dead center of this amazing piece. Of course, I geeked out and asked for a photo (don’t mind me, look at that work!). Their styles so drastically different, but they really found a way to fit them together.

Absolutely stunning work by Dennis McNett aka Wolfbat. I must’ve stared at this for a good 30 minutes. Some of these lovely pieces were up for sale for those lucky individuals with such a budget. I will one day own an Alex Yanes!

So, if you’re in the city between now and July 21, 2018, definitely stop by and take in some of the awesomeness.

Good Medicine Paradigm Gallery + Studio

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The Perils of Perfectionism


Per·fec·tion·ist
noun
a person who refuses to accept any standard short of perfection.


 

If you’re anything like me and see yourself as a perfectionist, this may be your biggest flaw. How could you take a word which basically translates to being the best and see it as such an imperfection? Well, it’s simple, nobody is perfect.

As a perfectionist you simply will not and quite frankly cannot settle for less than the idea of perfect. You’ll tweak and tinker, scrap and rebuild, doubt and critique until you’re left feeling unsatisfactory about something that may have been A1 from the start.

I recently did some nail art that was inspired by a street artist I follow, Adam Kiyoshi Fujita, and absolutely love his work. On a whim I decided to post it to social media and to my surprise he actually reached out and was impressed by it. Adam Kiyoshi Fujita Inspired NailsHe’d asked me to send him some more pics showing off my design and that’s when my anxiety set it. The curse of perfectionism strikes again!

Instead of jumping on the opportunity, I decided to spend the next few hours freaking out about how unsatisfied I was about my work and all of the pictures I’d taken. Rather than feeling gratification that he’d found interest in my work at all, I felt pressure, stress, and depressed I’m not 100% ambidextrous (talk about an adverse reaction).

After my nervous breakdown I finally decided it’s best to send something than nothing, so I sucked up my unrealistic high standards and sent what I thought was best out of what I had. Turns out he loved what I had to show!



“The only thing we have to fear is…fear itself.”
– FDR


Perfection is imaginary. It’s opinionated and varies from person to person, yet there are some of us who still try to attain the unattainable, and want to satisfy everyone and ourselves. Though it’s great to give yourself standards, it’s unhealthy to strain for an impossible standard. It’s the fear of creating something sub par to those around us, but we really are our biggest critics.

The truth is, in creation, there will always be room for improvement because an artist’s work is never really complete. The mind is ever-changing and new ideas and inspirations can stem at any moment. Whether it be the moment you were in when you began painting, writing, or recording, or in a moment shortly after or even years after. The important thing to remember is not to waste time scrutinizing and missing an opportunity trying to create the best version, when you could create a variety of amazing things. In the words of Shia LaBeouf and Nike, “Just Do It”.

Jason Richardson & Luke Holland Tour

The Jason Richardson & Luke Holland Tour is definitely one you should catch this summer.

Insane storm in Philly caused me to miss out on the first of the night, but I got there right in time for David Maxim Micic. I’d seen Jason Richardson and Stolas prior, so my anticipation laid in both natives, Plini of Austria and David Maxim Micic from Serbia. They did not disappoint. You could feel the love from David Maxim Micic on stage with his first time being in the U.S and it surely was reciprocated. Hoping to see his following grow after this tour and much more of him in the future.

Stolas is always fun to watch. Sergio (also guitarist of Sianvar) does a bang up job every time I’ve seen him. Watching this dude shred while spinning in circles on the ground is something to witness. I actually got to meet up with him after their set for a pic and some quick words. He informed me of their last minute decision to join the tour due to some van issues, but glad they got everything squared away in time.

Reign of Kindo, my first time hearing of these guys. Live they sound beautiful, lovely pipes on the vocalist, but just not my forte. Although the crowd did not agree, lots of positive feedback during their set. You can tell there’s a variety of influence from all genres for this band.

Sad to say, but in a slightly good way, Plini brought most of the crowd in at Voltage Lounge. It was a sold out show and I do believe this is where it went, seeing as how it cleared out a bit after his set. So many Plini fans, so many engaged. This wasn’t his first time in Philly, he’d been here a few months back at the Trocodero. Trying to make up for what I missed, there was no way I wasn’t seeing him this time. My only wish was that the sound quality was better. With a packed show the garage door was kept open, causing mega sound loss. All in all it was awesome to finally see Selenium Forest & Atlas played live. With serious technical issues throughout the night, many were nervous he’d would be cut short, but there was plenty of time for him to perform magic on stage.

Kinda glad it emptied out, helped me to get a much better view of Jason Richardson burning through frets. It got a little moshy during Tonga, which is always a good time. It’s so satisfying watching Jason sweep so clean. You can tell there’s lots of devotion in this dudes playing. I would have loved to see more of Luke Holland though. This kid is super talented and it would have been cool to see their stage setup facing one another. From Omni to Hoes Down, absolutely flawless. I honestly don’t think Jason Richardson gets enough credit, but credit is definitely due.

Street Art & Poutine, Oh Canada: Instagram Worthy Sites in Montreal

Montreal Skyline from Mont Royal
Crossed another one off the list this year…Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Home of some really great eats and so much art.
Canada has been on the bucket list for a while now, it was just a toss-up between Toronto and Montreal. A few recurrent visitors spoke so highly of it, I was sold on Montreal. I have a love for architecture and historic cathedrals and this place definitely has some gems.

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Reasons to Get Lit on the Lit AF Tour

lit

The Lit AF Tour was without a doubt LIT AF!

Philly was not only the eighth show of the tour, but the eighth SOLD OUT show in a row. That’s pretty big seeing as how next week marks only a year since the release of Polyphia’s second studio album, Renaissance.

This wasn’t my first time seeing the prog metal band perform live, but it was the first time I got to see them headline Continue reading

“I Hate Feminists”

I had a recent discussion with a fellow snapchatter about feminism. He’d brought it up in a negative light in which I proceeded to ask why he resented the word so much. He had explained that he is currently in the army and does not believe its right that feminists are all about women being in infantry (in the line of fire) but are asking for an easier physical training test.

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The First Step to Achieving Your Dream

It’s nearly impossible to surf the internet as of late without running into some type of motivational quote or meme about the simplest of things. Stop Wishing. Start Doing. or The Best Way to Predict the Future is to Create It.

What is it in these obvious statements that we find so uplifting?

For myself, the greatest motivation lies in stories I hear from people who have taken that first step towards something they’re passionate about. Continue reading

More Rihanna Hype – “Immortalized Statue”

I’m not one for celebrity news or gossip, but it was brought to my attention that there was a ginormous statue created in Berlin of pop figure, Rihanna, which she has visited, selfied, and spread across social media.

Upon first glance at the image circulating the internet it was not my immediate assumption of what a statue of someone would be. Not only is the figure in a bikini, not only is it headless, but it also has a face imprinted on its chest.

For most the first question was, why is it headless? Mine on the other hand was, how do you know it’s Rihanna?

After debating with someone who is big into pop culture, there was no doubt that it is of her, at least that’s what was enforced upon me. I asked the simple question considering these pieces of information missing: Continue reading

Kickass Comeback, Thrice @ The Fillmore in Philadelphia

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After 4 years of hibernating, Thrice was able to make a comeback picking up right where they left off. This time around perfecting their sound, growing their fanbase, and topping Billboard charts with To be Everywhere is to be Nowhere.

Though kicking off their first tour since 2012 to push out their newest album, long term fans can still reminisce with their chosen setlist. Some songs including In Years to Come (off their second album, The Illusion of Safety), The Artist in the Ambulance (song titled after their first major label album), and a handful of tracks from Vheissu (their 05′ release).

Already half way through their tour, yet their performance at The Fillmore in Philadelphia was still highly spirited and one to remember. Fall tour dates have already been set, so if you haven’t seen them live, they’re definitely something to experience.

Back at it Again with the Street Art

For the second time this month I’ve gravitated towards an old coal mine [read previous] that has manifested into creative works of art.

Graffiti Pier, also known as Pier 124 and once 13339481_10153780490372833_5410413389745575982_nused for a coal mining operation, now houses the work of Philly’s great graffiti artists. There’s also a sweet view of the Delaware River at the end of the pier. Though not ideal, you’ll also find people diving into the river and fishing.

Not a great place to bring kids or dogs for that matter, unfortunately, it’s loaded with broken glass and empty spray cans, but definitely something to admire if you’re into street art and hidden gems.

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