Genius and Genies

Sitting on a night bus headed from Istanbul to Didim, my friend and I had a very interesting conversation about genies and magic in Islam. I had never known that these were elements of the Islamic religion. Genies, or jinn in Arabic, are these kind of hidden creatures made of fire that can be good, neutral, or evil. I would imagine the Christian equivalent would be a demon (except demons are always bad, it seems).

Fast forward a few months, I clicked on a TED talk link on creativity and one of many fascinating TED talks was by the author of “Eat Pray Love” and it was actually about genius (genies) and daemons (demons) which were considered sources of inspiration. People didn’t have to carry the weight of their creative successes or failures because they considered their source of inspiration to be these extrinsic personalities.

I thought Gilbert’s ideas were very interesting and enjoyed learning even more about the history and etymology of creatures I always associated with being blue and having the voice of Robin Williams. I hope you enjoy this clip as much as I do!

Also, here are more fascinating TED talks about creativity that are very insightful, I hope you profit from them as I did.


Banner Ads

We made three banner ads in class. We had the choice of Red Hook Beer or Gatorade. I chose Gatorade, here’s why:

Last night I took my first hot yoga class and received a lesson from my med student friend about how I needed to have potassium and other electrolytes and not just water after sweating so intensively. She warned me of all the perils that befall a poor soul who didn’t take proper care of themselves after hot yoga. Needless to say, I went home and ate a handful of potato chips to catch up on my potassium and as a result avoided sudden death. Next time, however, I just might bring a large jug of Gatorade when I sweat it out at hot yoga. I think I am the most proud of the third (largest) banner ad. Enjoy, I’ll be posting a picture of these in The Stranger. Bon weekend!

Meet Mandy “Mandilla” Blouin: New Media Interview

Mandy Blouin

Click on this picture to see her work!


Rachael Conley

“I was in St. Martinique with my sister some years back. We were wondering the streets of the island and happened to make friends with one of the locals. He was indulging us with stories and the history of the island, and later asked if we felt like exploring the island the following day. So we ventured the very next morning and went on an incredible hike through the rainforest, which was phenomenal. At one point in the hike we stopped off at this water fall, and jumped in. And then he took us one-by-one behind this waterfall into this tiny cave opening, between the sound of the waterfall and the smell and touch of the stone cave wall it was the most beautiful space I’d ever been in, by chance.”

Meet Mandy Blouin, artist name: Mandilla. She is a graphic design student and a designer by trade. She has a freckle in her right eye and calls heads or tails as her spirit moves her. Gustav Klimt has influenced her more than any other artist, enough to cause her to devote herself to fine art more seriously than making art as gifts for family and friends.
“Also, I would have to say that his design work has influenced me a lot as a visual thinker and problem solver,” Mandy explained.

Her fondest possessions to wear are her jewelry. She will typically be found sporting bangles. Ivory is especially fond to her which she wears as mourning jewelry in memory of the animals from which they came. She loves the way ivory looks and feels and sounds. She also loves all shades of blue.

Mandy grew up in a small town where everyone knew everybody else. The town’s name is Hood River.  She found small town life frustrating and freeing: frustrating due to stifling conservative views, freeing because her parents didn’t have to worry about her in a small town so she was free to explore. She grew up in a Jehovah’s Witness home but chose not to subscribe to that religion. Mandy studied dance for 15 years, both ballet and modern.

Seattle became home base when Mandy decided to get a BFA in fine art at Cornish College but it was a tough tie between graphic arts and fine arts. Mandy is a person who loves clean order both visually and in the workspace. Laying things out and playing with space is something she has always instinctively done.

Taking a year between schooling to work for an antique jewelry store, she did graphic design to establish their store identity for their marketing and PR. Now Mandy would like to get a genuine graphic design education and get paid to do what she knows how to do and also learn more in graphic design to go farther in her career.

And now we end appropriately, with a bucket list of five things Mandy would like to achieve:

1. Cut all her hair off and shave her head.
2. Ride an Elephant
3. Cave Driving
4. Live in a tree house
5. Design or create something that improves that way we interact and live in this world, in a positive way.