May 26 2017

Starting a New Company: The Excitement and the Scary Stuff

Sorry about my inconsistency in posting. I’ve been working on this new fashion line I’m going to launch in a few months. Though I’m super excited about it, it’s also giving me a good amount of stress. My dream has always been to be a successful entrepreneur, running a company, inspiring a team. Can I make it happen? Do dreams really come true?

I’ve been reading about companies like S’well, Stella & Dot, and Outdoor Voices who are all created by female entrepreneurs. For some reason, I’m drawn to their stories. These brave women followed their dream, they were relentless, and they pursued their passion.

I look back at the success of the art blog I founded, My Modern Met, and I realize that sometimes you have to look back to feel confident about your future. My Modern Met gets an astounding 37 million visitors a year (or around 3 million a month). We helped launch the careers of countless artists, designers and photographers by making their work go viral. (How cool was that job?) In my seven years of working there, as the editor-in-chief, I wrote over 7,000 blog posts about today’s creative art. (Here’s one of my all time favorite posts. It went super viral.) Though at first, when I started the blog, I was nervous about my writing and my taste (or curation), after a while everything became second nature.

Though I can’t tell you what kind of products I’m going to launch first, under the brand name Skylar Yoo, I can tell you that I’m back working with artists. I have so much respect for creatives, I truly think they’re going to be the leaders of tomorrow.

This blog has changed from being a personal one to a photography based one to a fashion one. Now, I think I’m going to go back to making it personal, sort of like a diary. I hope you don’t mind the change. I’ll post about how Skyklar Yoo is coming along, I’ll tell you about my family and I’ll share with you what’s inspiring me these days. Fun Links of the Week (on Fridays) will no longer exist but I’ll post in real time what I think is really cool.

I’ve been juggling between five books these days. One of them that I’m really enjoying right now is called Making Ideas Happen. It’s by Scott Belsky, founder of the art site Behance. (In 2012, he sold the company to Adobe for an estimated $150 million.) On a side note, when I was back at the Met, we actually emailed back and forth a few times. I felt like I was this teeny bopper fan of this big celebrity.

Belsky spent six years studying the habits of hundreds of successful creative people and he developed some really interesting insights. One of them was that everyone should organize their life as a series of projects and that we should manage those projects with a bias towards action. We have to always be moving forward in order to execute on an idea. Another takeaway from the book is this: Making Ideas Happen = (Ideas) + Organization & Execution + Communal Forces + Leadership Capability. A key to getting sh*t done is being organized! After reading that I got my Excel and Word sheets going. I need to organize my thoughts! Instead of having all of my ideas and goals swirling around in my head, I type them into neat spreadsheets. It has helped tremendously!

On another note, there’s this cool Kickstarter that’s going on now that’s about a desk organizer. You’re like, really Alice, a desk organizer?! Before you click away, watch the frickin’ video! His goal was $18,000 and he’s now almost at $213,000! I supported it on the spot. Christopher Jobson, the head of the art blog Colossal, tipped me off to the creator’s t-shirts and I ended up buying a few. I think I like the men’s t-shirts more than the women’s. The designer’s name is Jeff Sheldon and his company is called Ugmonk. The clothes are suppose to be super soft. (I got this red ampersand sweatshirt. Can’t wait to live in it.)

One last thing. Here are the four things I bought on the Colossal Shop this week. I’d been eyeing them for quite some time. Love my miniature spring forest, galaxy lollipops, color wheel pendant, and Colossal mugs (these are nice and big, perfect for your morning coffee). The mugs are half price right now.

Ok, that’s all for now. Be back again soon! Have a super duper awesome weekend.

Art by Christopher David Ryan.

May 24 2017

It Takes 66 Days to Form a New Habit

Did you know that there was a study done that tells us that it takes 66 days to form a new habit? We have this big family trip coming up where we’re going to Hawaii so I’ve been running every morning to get into “swimsuit” shape. It’s been about 3 weeks or 21 days since I began running and it’s starting to feel easier to wake-up and go. I actually enjoy the alone time where I can play my music. I always start off with Titanium by David Guetta. (Such a good song and video, if you haven’t seen it.)

I feel like having that alone time helps in coming up with creative ideas, too.

As Elite Daily wrote: “In a study released in the European Journal of Social Psychology, Phillippa Lally and her team of researchers surveyed 96 people over a 12-week period to find exactly how long it takes to start a new habit.

Over the 12 weeks, the participants chose a new habit and reported each day how automatic the behavior felt. At the end of the period, Lally analyzed the results and found the average time it took for the participants to pick up a new habit was 66 days.”

Fascinating, huh?

May 23 2017

Nicole Kidman’s Timeless Dress

This is the type of dress that makes me want to go into fashion. Nicole Kidman just debuted this Raf Simons’ number at the Cannes Film Festival. It took an astonishing 150 hours to construct from approximately 180 yards of silk tulle!

“The dress is the incarnation of a modern fairy tale,” said the stylist, who accessorized Kidman’s look with Calvin Klein deco-inspired heels. “It has to be stunning, chic, timeless, and modern!”

She looks A-MAZING!

via [Vogue]

May 22 2017

Body Painter Creates Unique Art Inspired by Depeche Mode Albums

If you’re a Depeche mode fan, you will really appreciate this. A body painter that goes by the name of Pashur House recently recreated the looks of Depeche Mode covers using a model painted in black. Click each album cover title to see how he referenced each album. I love the Violator one! These are fantastic. You can see more of them on the Depeche Mode Facebook fan page.

This is part of an ingenious marketing campaign. In order to get the word out of their latest album, Spirit, Depeche Mode let their fans take over their Facebook page for a whole year (that’s a full 365 days). They vetted everyone who applied. The band recruited hundreds of curators from their diverse fan base, which means they chose one curator per day for 365 days. Read more about the people behind this marketing campaign, here.

Can you believe that the band has been around for more than 30 years? Wow, I feel old.

Above: “As a body painter, I have always wanted to create a series of artistic Depeche Mode inspired body paint images – that are both iconic and beautiful. I wanted to combine the sleek, iconic look of the “Violator” album cover and the sexiness of Anton Corbijn’s photo of the nude model that posed on the “Personal Jesus” single. To achieve this I took iconic elements from each of the Depeche Mode album covers, painted them in vibrant colors, and in contrast had a model painted completely black pose with each one. So this is my artistic representation of my favorite band through my favorite art form.”

How appropriate that their first album features a nest, the first creation of an incredible band! I really love every single song on this album, and really enjoyed creating this image because of it. Building a nest is a bit trickier than I expected, I have new found respect for birds now, lol. I loved the wildness of this look, and really enjoyed trying to capture the feel of the cover.”

My favorite of their more recent albums. I love every song on this album. My favorite song on this album is “Lillian”. What’s your favorite song on Playing the Angel?”

My favorite songs on this album are “Jezebel” and “In Sympathy”, two totally different themes and I love them both! The abstract look of the album cover was voted one of the top 10 in 2009, and one of my favorites to put my own spin on.

May 19 2017

Fun Links of the Week

How was your week? Did I tell you we’re in the process of buying a house? It’s stressful but exciting! Think we found the right one. More to come.

12 Lessons From the 100 Most Creative People in 2017

I love these modern loafers in black and brown. (Apparently, Angelina Jolie is a fan, too.)

Who wants to visit this rainbow village? (Me!)

Pink is everywhere, even in art.

I can’t get over how pretty this new hotel bar’s rainbow art.

How cool would it be to plunk one of these houses down in the middle of nature?

He’s one of my favorite illustrators. This is a new interview with him. Just bought his book.

Who doesn’t remember library cards? I want these pillows.

Katy Perry pulled off an art prank? She’s cool.

Photo: This Jean-Michel Basquiat painting of a giant skull from 1982 just sold for a jaw-dropping $110.5 million, the most ever paid at auction for a work by an American artist. Crazy, huh?

May 19 2017

Happy 10th Anniversary to the Love of My Life

Like lots of couples, Sam and I have gone through our share of ups and downs. We first met at summer camp when we were just 13 years old. The camp lasted for only one week so after that we lost touch. Then, just by chance, we happened to both attend UCLA. On our first day of school, we bumped into each other on Bruin Walk. The rest, you can say, is history.

We officially started dating when we were 18, we broke up a few times, but we’re now the strongest we’ve ever been. Married for 10 years with two sweet, loving sons. What more could a woman ask for?

I count my blessings every day for this life God has given me. One of my mottos is “Family First.” They’re the people that bring you the most joy in this world.

When I was a sad, pimply 13-year-old teenager with only a few friends and no “crush” in sight, I would look up at the stars and wish that, one day, God would bring me someone special to love. That dream came true times infinity. Sam is the sweetest, smartest, most generous, most everything person you will ever meet. If God wanted to create a perfect human being it would be Sam. (I am not kidding.)

They say that you know who your true friends are when the going gets tough. Every six months to a year, I go through a manic episode. Sam drops everything. He is right there by my side, taking me on long drives, hiking with me on dirt trails, calming me in bed. He is unbelievably patient.

I don’t know what I did to deserve such a man but I thank my “lucky stars” that God gave me this angel. I love you, Sammy!

May 18 2017

Refinery29’s Cofounder Talks About Courageous Creativity

Years ago, in Los Angeles, I attended a Creative Mornings session. For those of you who are not familiar with Creative Mornings, they can best be described as breakfast lecture series for the creative community. The idea was founded by one of my biggest sources of inspiration, Swiss Miss, aka Tina Roth Eisenberg. Recently, a cofounder of one my go-to websites, Refinery29, was on. I love watching creative, high spirited, ambitious women tell their stories. Piera Gelardi is both entertaining to watch and inspirational. They fact that her company pulled off the art and fashion funhouse, 29Rooms, boggles my mind. Watch the video till the end to see how that creative idea came together.

May 17 2017

Favorite Workout Leggings: Outdoor Voices

On my quest to find my next big business idea, I researched the hell out of leggings. Ever since I was 10 years old, I would always wear my trusty old black pair of leggings. They’re just so comfortable and they go with everything. Lately, there’s been an explosion of different legging styles. As I’ve mentioned on this blog before, one of my favorite companies who makes leggings, especially for runs or workouts, is Outdoor Voices. Not only do they have clean, timeless styles, the materials are good and they fit just perfectly.

They just came out with The Rose Collection and I’m loving all of the pieces. I know they’re a bit pricey, at between $75 and $95 dollars a pop, but they’re really worth it for the quality and style.

You know how I love sharing the stories of go-getter, entrepreneurial women? The person behind Outdoor Voices is a young woman, named Tyler Haney, who has the guts to go after the Nike and Lululemon market. More power to her! Read the CNBC article, here.

Check out Outdoor Voices’s website!

May 15 2017

The Perfect LBD (Little Black Dress)…I Found on Amazon!

Ladies, aren’t we always looking for that perfect little black dress? Well, I think I’ve found it! Have you heard of Lark & Ro? It’s a clothing line created by Amazon exclusively for Prime members. This 3/4 sleeve knit fit-and-flare dress is so comfortable! It hugs in all the right places and it’s not too short or too long. I’m kind of a minimalist, I like everything in my life to be simple and clean. Lately, that’s applied to my wardrobe as well. I liked this dress because it acts like a blank slate. You can dress it up or dress it down. Best part? This dress is only $44.50!

The other one I love, also from Lark and Ro, is this sleeveless ponte fit-and-flare dress. It’s more for the summer. Also super comfortable and chic.

Also one of my finds, to pair with these dresses, is Boohoo jewelry. They have cheap but trendy pieces.

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