Morning rituals and other summer life updates

Create, Explore, Lifestyle

As I get back to the flow of sharing things around here, summer is getting to an end. And I don’t say that easily. It’s breaking me to see myself already wearing my soft pullovers and zipper ups indoors while the beach is still calling me with warm waters. Still, I’ll try to ignore all of those who already share pumpkins and fall collections. Ain’t giving up on summer yet, even if my clothing says otherwise!

Now, let me share a bit of what is going on around here. Did I enjoy summer at its fullest? I’d had to say no. I did get to the beach quite a few times, though I think what I did most was running. And snorkelling. Freediving and apnea are a growing interest for me this year. Anyways, I’m not a big fan of going where the crowds are, the surf hasn’t been much convenient (if there was actually any) and, of course, life is always busy.

Maybe you recall me talking about reading that much early in the year. Well, I’m not keeping up very well as I’ve been shifting my focus on trying to staying on track with practising my drawing/painting skills as well as trying to work a bit on my body, aka doing some sport or activities. And summer is great for that. I’ve felt so much more active during these last couple of months!

So, let me tell you about my morning routine. Beware, I’m not another blogger talking about the importance of self-care, those who get to spend three hours in the morning doing what makes them feel good… I’m just trying my best to make the most of my days. The days in which I go to my full-time job.

So, what do I do? Firstly, I try to wake up as early as possible (trying to sleep around 7 hours during the week though) which means that luckily I’ll get up at 5.40 am – but which also means I can’t watch any series before sleep. While I start clearing my mind and pulling away from the sleep in my eyes I spend a good chunk of time having my breakfast, usually while scrolling Instagram. I sometimes even make a post or start preparing one.

After that, I’ll go for like a half an hour of stretching/yoga/plank exercises to wake up the rest of the body while I listen to some music. I totally need that, even if I’m too tired, just some stretching makes wonders for my body. Especially, if you consider I’ll be sitting for almost the rest of the day!  Then, it’s time for some art! For half an hour or so I’ll be sketching or painting, still with my music on and I use every minute available before I have to rush to get ready for work. And so here my secret revealed as to why I still get rushing to work when I get up so early.

Not all days go so perfectly, some days I’m too tired, some days I have something else to prepare or do, some days I exercise more and paint less, and otherwise. On lucky days though, I may even get 20 minutes of painting on my lunch break. And that, my friends, is why I’ve been able to paint these things below.

 

 

Oh, and this is me, trying to smile still sleepy, in those days when I could still go around with just a shirt in the early morning…

 

 

 

 

I messed up ~ ink experiment

Create

Did I get to tell you that I moved from creating with watercolours to trying my hand at inks? I may have not. Well, while on this blogging hiatus in my life, I decided to change my focus to using ink and a calligraphic pen to create new artworks and hopefully, one day, new patterns in a kind of a new style. It feels like a creative challenge, as I’m leaving behind the bright pastel colours I used to use these last couple of years but I’m gaining skill on using the “line” more (which I really enjoy). I’m also intentionally using fewer colours, being my palette mostly blues, a bit of brown and black – you’ll see what I’m talking about in a coming post.

So, while starting to try my hand at this ink thing, something happened.

Do you know that moment when something you’ve been fearing might happen finally happens? You saw it coming. You didn’t know when, but it was meant to happen, sooner or later.

That was the thing with using inks. I knew someday a pot would fall and spill all over the place. And so it happened. Even though I knew the time would come, I wasn’t prepared. I had not thought about what I would do.

So I just cleaned the mess. Luckily, the table didn’t wasn’t damaged, neither did my phone, which was right there and got some drops. However, I did realise while I was wiping the table with a piece of clothing that I should have done something with the ink that was now flowing down the sink. I hope next time I’ll think about putting all the liquids in another, bigger crystal jar – the ink would be dissolved in water but at least I could still use it.

it did happen again 🙈

( I spilled some ink again while I hadn’t published this post yet and I did store some of it into a jar, yay!)

So after realising I was losing all that ink I thought: “Couldn’t I do something with it right now? “. So, as quick as I could, I got that piece of clothing (intended to clean the mess) and I used it to create an abstract texture. Then I added some shapes more intentionally, even with a few drops of hydrogen peroxide and voilĂ , out of a mess, I created this print below. I know I’m not getting into the history of art for this but… the takeaway is that not everything is lost when things don’t work out as expected, nor when accidents or messing ups show up. There’s always something to be done to improve any situation, you can always make it better.

So here it is, my free-of-guilt abstract. Truth be told I somehow still feel that abstracts are the art that those who can’t draw can still do, and because of that, I shouldn’t do it. Lately, I’ve been trying to acknowledge my blocks around creation, what I’m supposed or I’m not supposed to do, the reason why I “can’t” be an artist, etc. You know, the everyday reflections of a creative type. Maybe another day I’ll talk about that (I know a couple of books that help!).

I thought that the purple texture would make for a great pattern but as I am not that much into abstract patterns either… well, I just used the opportunity to play around. (You can actually save this image to your computer as desktop wallpaper).

 

So here it is to the creation of unexpected things. And playing in life. đŸ„‚

~x~

Lena

 

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How to remove ads : the most effective way

Lifestyle

Internet is a great place for businesses and for marketing. We all know it. But why? Basically, because the internet makes it a lot easier to find the right audience for any product. Also, everybody is consuming a lot of content, which means that our behaviour makes it even easier for companies to reach us. So, advertisers will look for and find you on the internet. But, can you avoid them? And if so, how?

Yes, you can. That’s the short answer. But you’ll have to take action. And they’ll try to put you back on the ads consuming wagon at every turn.

You should be conscious that most services track you so they can get the right ad in front of you. Every time you accept the cookies of a new site, you should take a good look at which cookies are those. The most basic ones and the reason why most websites need to warn you is because of the social media cookies. That website that you are visiting may not be tracking you but as they use social media widgets and other third parties (and those do track all your activity) they must warn you. But I’ve found that many sites will even specify which services and companies work with them, which might actually be many more than we are used to and will share your data for a wider range of purposes and to far many companies. Unfortunately, there are some of these cases when it is actually not possible to deny accepting those cookies and to navigate the site.

How to remove ads (some at least)?

First of all, start by getting some tools. Aka:

  • Adblock (for your favourite browser)
  • Use a browser that doesn’t track you and blocks most ads

Then, accept that you’ll have to say no. Every time you say you consent to have ads better suited to your interests, you are accepting ads and trackers.

a gratuitous picture of my cat, depicting privacy 😆

 

How to get more privacy using google

First, check this(!) It freaks me out to see it. They just have too much information. Imagine you could access that info about any person. Or every person. You could know much more than where they work and live (which is not little).

Then :

And now for the action that changes it all: go to these sites and turn off all the companies:

Last but not least, stay informed and keep trying to push off the ads. You may even find that you are not seeing ads on Youtube! I rarely see any and I can enjoy Youtube music for free without interruptions (most of the time).

And rest assured, the day you are actually on the internet looking for a product you want or need, you’ll be able to find it without the help of constant ads floating all over the sites.

 

Now, go surf the amazing web.

small ink flower

 

 

Rolling time – video edit

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Some days I roll around, some days I cruise around. This video is one of the rolling ones. There’s not too much to it, just a casual day.  Thought I would get some footage and then decided to edit it to make a little video. I’m sure you won’t be enjoying it as much as I enjoyed the afternoon but… I’m sharing a piece of my life that hopefully will inspire you someway.

Check my youtube channel. There’s not much there yet but I’ll try to create better things in the near future!

Wanna see another very small part of my life? Meet (briefly) who I spend the most time with in this other post/video.

 

 

Video edit – Sunny days

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Coming today with a video I made…. in which I am not 😛 I could have made a vlog but I decided to try out my camera video options in a more Âżartistic? way and made my first edit in ages. It’s just a way for you to meet (briefly) my twin sister, my boyfriend and our pets, and the landscape that surrounds me. How nice were the warmer days! (and yes, I recorded this before the summer started… it’s embarrassing having to admit that I’ve neglected my internet presence for a year). Anyway, we are all on a never-ending quest for finding balance!

You can find this video also on youtube. And do follow me on Instagram to see my pictures more often or on Twitter to get spammed with links when I get some time to surf the net.

 

Things worth sharing #August2019

Lifestyle

Here comes what used to be my “links of the month” post : Links and recommendations I found that (I think) are worth sharing along with some life updates.

YOU CAN SKIP THIS PART

The year started 8 months ago and I didn’t get to publish any post. So embarrassing and shameful. But here we are. So, let me tell you REAL quick what my intentions were when 2019 started. I decided not to focus on a list of goals for the year. Instead, I want to focus on the bigger picture and work on it slowly and steadily. That’s my only goal. To move forward. To lower my expectations over myself and all the things I should be doing and achieving and to acknowledge that I’m already working hard on balancing all the things on my plate and giving priority to building habits that will help me achieve my big dreams. And I encourage you to do the same. I can’t jump to a future life without being here right now and doing the things that need to be done right now. Taking care of oneself is not as social media lays it out to be (pink baths and cute pyjamas) but about being brutally honest with the self and starting to learn what those activities are that do you well but that you deny because, in your mind, you are not that sort of person. (I feel so mature now that I’m 26 yo LOL) Let me put better: I tend to avoid people and sports, not because I dislike them (maybe some people and some sports, but not in general), but because I don’t see them as a priority. As it happens, though, I do feel a lot more alive if I spend a good chunk of my free time engaged in both of them. And that’s hard to listen to, as I usually think I need to stay in when I most need to go out. You may understand this better if your personality type is 5 too. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, check this. And you may also be interested in this (it seems I’m a logician). These are personality groups, with tests and information on every type. I’m not a fan of being put in a box like that but when it happens to be quite right and the texts become enlighting, I must admit it can be helpful. And I’m always up for some self-improvement.

NOW THE LIST

Here comes a mix of links I found on the interwebs with no connection:

– This video: ” In “Dream”—a harrowing video by Zombie Studio—critically endangered animals poignantly sing “I Dreamed a Dream” from Les MisĂ©rables.”

– Ever wondered about the beaches in South Africa? I did and I want to keep this article close for the day I get to go. You know, even though I’m not the clichĂ© surfer who gets every surf break they can, I do like to travel to places where it is possible, so if I get the chance to surf the better.

– If you are a designer too, you may like this. How important do you think typography is for science fiction movies that picture the future? Well, quite a bit actually. You can see some case studies on this page.

– Here is a short guide to Instagram basics (characters related) that comes handy.

– Do you have all the new emojis?

 

AND THE BOOKLIST

I started doing so well with my reading this year… And rapidly went back to the old habits. I love reading but I have to do it squeezing the small chunks of time I have left in my day and that means being focused on reading, while I still want to be thinking about so many other things, my projects, designs, illustrations… Anyway, here’s a list of what I’ve been reading this year (yeah, there’s a theme around here – I’m always up for a business/ marketing/ self-improvement book):

The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson – This book sets the tone for the start of the year. The idea behind it is simple but that makes it just more powerful. I totally recommend it to anyone but to explain it in a sentence:  there lays a great power on every small action you take every day and it will change your future.

This is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn To See by Seth Godin.  You probably know Seth Godin as he’s a marketing guru on the internet and you have probably come across something he said already… Anyway, in this book he talks modern marketing in the era of online commerce and it’s a nice read, good to brush up on some ideas.

Company of One: Why Staying Small Is the Next Big Thing for Business by Paul Jarvis. I love how he talks about building and keeping a small business small and how that’s important. I totally buy into the idea that small businesses have a real future and the idea of not trying to grow bigger and bigger as a business should be pursued more broadly.

The Go-Giver: A Little Story About a Powerful Business Idea  by Bob Burg, John David Mann. This is a fast read, very powerful, and I would give a copy of this book to everyone (with a slight interest in business). It teaches you values, it teaches relationships, it teaches business. Go for it!

The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter–And How to Make the Most of Them Now by Meg Jay. This one’s a bit off-topic, but I really enjoyed it. Not in the way I would enjoy a novel, but as a book that knows how to clearly break down what it means to be a 20-something, the worries we have, the problems we face, how we feel about our lives. And it gives solutions or at least it shows us the path. How to grow up and keep going forward in the way that better suits and benefits us. I wish I had this book when I entered the twenties but at least I had it 4 years to go before entering the so cursed 30’s. Anyone else has noticed that all benefits of being “young” or “under x” end at 30? Is there something that they don’t tell us, like that we will be dead inside or something when we reach that age?

As a man thinketh by James Allan. I had listened to/ watched videos with James Allen’s voice overs for a while and heard (actually read) about this book lots of times previously, so it was a matter of time I would read it eventually. It’s a short read and it teaches how to think, which is not a small feat.

Rich dad, poor dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki. Did you miss having financial classes or some kind of guidance while growing up about money issues? Well, here you’ll find what you wanted and what you need to start progressing. I enjoyed it, was motivated by it and have to keep digging in that field (I have a full course on financial studies ready to study).

When Coffee & Kale Compete: Become Great at Making Products People Will Buy by Alan Klement. How can you get a great idea for a business? How to prove it’s worth pursuing it? This book is full of good ideas, case studies and ideas on how to find a good idea, how we know it’s a good idea and how others have made it. Learn what you need to know to develop a good business idea – that what you can take from it. I loved the approaches taken in this.

And now I’m currently reading these :

I’ll tell you more when I’m finished. And probably the list will have grown longer, as my to-read list is endless (f***).

And here goes a video I enjoyed recently about this great surf artist and his path to it.

And lastly… A product that has saved me this year: glasses with a blue filter. I had my doubts they would actually work… But spending most of my day in front of a screen (retina screens and my Xiaomi’s) I had to try it, as I would have red eyes almost every day. And they do work. I still get red eyes from time to time and some days they even hurt, but it has now happened on occasion when it would be like this every day before. If you are thinking about taking the leap and trying them, go ahead!

 

red eyes portrait illustration

Because I don’t want to feel like the drawing above, I end up looking like below. A bit too geeky for my taste.

 

See ya soon (hopefully)đŸ€™

x Lena x

 

 

 

Always Wondering ~ Sometimes Wandering

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Grab your backpack, fill it with your fav equipment and leave the house without knowing what time your are coming back.

What do I feel is the best thing about practising sports or any activity outdoors? Just being outdoors. That’s why sometimes I’d rather sit in the wild with my camera at hand and just look around, observing everything and noticing the details of every little leaf, rock… Maybe it is because of my childhood holidays spent on the mountains, allowed to spend all day on the outdoors, doing as I pleased, playing my own games and the ones I’d make up with my sister.

I dream of the day I’ll be able to spend time in my own garden, working under the sun, enjoying the breeze and letting my imagination wild.

Nowadays, though, I just enjoy going out. The sun always warms you, even on the colder days and the air is fresh. Natural light and different views will always be highly appreciated (especially after a week on the office).

As much as I can love routine, I love breaking it even more, or simply escaping from it. And those become the happy times, the moments to remember, the days I’ll remember in the future. Because routine, as good as it can feel sometimes, just gets lost in countless moments you won’t be able to tell from each other.

Nothing can beat outdoors time. It will keep me grounded and steer my imagination in ways a screen will never do. And it improves my sight and not otherwise!

The quietness lets your mind breath and all shapes, colours and feelings are an endless source of creativity.

Here below find some memories from a day out, being inspired by the late-fall feelings.

See you in the wild? Hope so!

 

ode to my beach

You little beach! ~ Ode to my beach

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Oh these little beaches! White sand (at least before the winds blow and the sea rises) and blue, green and purple waters. Fluffy foam and funny waves… The beach is where I go when I just want to go somewhere. Where I go on my mind to think, dream and relax. I love where I am when I’m not at the beach and I love going to the seashore at the same time.

 

 

It is the place where I go on Summer to … just go.

It is where I go on Winter to walk the dog and breath the salty air when it’s flat. And surfing whenever the stars align.

Let me fly away underwater and listen to the sounds down there.

 

I dream of going to the desert and look at those endless mountains of sand, soft under the feet, slipping between the toes, too hot to step over for long.

 

In the water the world morphs, it’s more flexible, open… It seems reality isn’t as stiff as it often seems to be. I see more glimpses of freedom in the water, may it be because I get to play and be myself as we used to do when we were kids.

 

I like to remind myself that this is what can be home. I don’t need a place to call my own, I am home and the sea (and nature) is where I like to hang out. Not much else I need.

The shapes of on the water make me crazy (in a good sense). I find it so fascinating to look at the changing shapes, the movement and colours. It’s like a kaleidoscope. I always love waiting for the swell to come while I enjoy the peaceful landscape, the changing colours, the lights and skies, the surface of the sea… I’ve seen so many wonderful skies thanks to being chasing waves.

 

Most of these pics are courtesy of my twin sis. As well as this nice butt %$s Sorry, I meant legs đŸ€Ș. You can see (read) her stuff here. You should take a look (and not just because I helped with the brand-web-graphics).

 

beach style

My sis, you’ll see lots of pics of her on my insta. Don’t think that’s too bad, we are twins xp

PS. This post may have been published like some months after it was actually photographed and written. It may just be that I like to fake I live in Australia or that I’ve been busy with other business.

A walk that inspires ~ Colours and landscapes to remember

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girona

Time is so relative! So different from one time to the next. That afternoon hour in the office when you forgot to have coffee and you get so sleepy runs so slow… that day spent indoors cleaning and organising that flies away before you can put your feet up… those days you drive for several miles and have some fun outdoors…

And then there are those days you can stretch. When you get away to have a bit of an adventure. To go up to the mountains and then back to a new town, when you walk and you talk, and dream and walk and see new things non-stop.

These pictures are from one of those times.

BerguedĂ 
The top of the world is always a good choice! Even if it’s not literally the top of the world. The satisfaction of eating a sandwich upon the summit of a mountain, when all you have to do for the day is going down to catch some rest; it feels so comforting and liberating!
la creu la gallina pelada
It seems quite unreal too to reach these new highs and see such a different landscape just a couple of hours from home, just a short walk upwards to get to these green and blue sights that look like the landscape from a children’s tale.
la gallina pelada
the top

Sometimes I even get the feeling that the surreal thing is our daily lives, so far away from places like these, walking only over concrete, having forgotten that we should be running wild and free a lot more most of the day.

besalĂș

After the hike in nature, we went back to meet civilisation but we remained on awe. We walked over ancient rocks and buildings, made so long ago, standing the pass of time while we pass by in a flicker.

 

de la roca
besalĂș
walking over ancient streets

I was marvelled stepping over these colourful cobblestones.

colourful cobblestones

Oh, and this pattern of flowers! I could totally have that door in my dream house. Maybe not that tall though.

 

How fun it is to find old buildings in such colourful palettes! Every little adventure could keep me inspired for months!

Everything comes to an end and this was it. Roadtripping back home, seeing the sun shine, driving under a storm and getting home to a peaceful night.

 

 

PS : locations are the summit La Gallina Pelada, the town of BesalĂș and the city of Girona. There was so much we saw and have still left to discover!

 

Have it all ~ Sea and Mountains

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Winter calls and we answer.

I made a commitment to myself to not be so angry about it being winter. I chose to enjoy it like any other time of the year. I think I’m doing fine. Though, winter is really just starting. As it will not end officially until the twenty-something of March, I still have three months to put my new attitude to the test. I’m feeling positive, though!

Does it feel less cold and comfortable now? Indeed. But I’m at peace with myself, I make sure I don’t feel the cold that much and that I still do things I love. Even if it means going less and less to surf some waves. As you’ll see below, that doesn’t mean I stop going to the beach!

 

When mountains call

 

Does it feel like winter in the pics above?  It surely feels cooler and the sun was almost gone when I took the pictures, so you can bet it doesn’t feel like summer. But it is wonderful as well, as always. Also, wherever you go, if you are in good company, there’s not much to complain about. And here we brought our dog and cat with us, while E. climbed and I entertained myself running around trying to keep the cat on sight. We even found some (lots of) mushrooms to take home for dinner. Win-win!

When the sea calls

I could stare at the ripples of the sea endlessly. Remember, you won’t see them ever again, not the same, not in all eternity.

 

And how wonderful is the beach? Much more enjoyable than in summer, where people are lying all around. We can bring our dog and have some fun while she runs and plays with all the other pups. I get to enjoy the salty air, enjoy the beach views and even watch some wild shrimps.

 

Folk Sunsets ~ It’s not all beachy around here

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As much as I love taking a few good shots of the coastal life, I can’t ignore the beauty of the rural life I’ve got. Being those mountains and country sights my day to day, sometimes I also feel the urge to capture the beautiful lights and colours that shine all around on the peaceful moments I go outdoors, even if it’s just to walk the pets.

These pictures were taken on one of those days when the sun was setting and creating a warm palette of colours.

Now, enjoy some folk vibes for a change!

folk landscape during sunset
canes and sky
mountains and water reflections

 

Water reflections are always a favourite sight. Though Pumpkin the cat doesn’t like them very much.

close up flowers

When I get to spend some time on the outdoors I always feel grateful to be able to enjoy our beautiful landscapes. And I’m especially grateful for not living in the heart of a grey big city where those peaceful moments and sights are even more precious and harder to find.

 

May we all find a peaceful walk for each day, one that brings us closer to the world, keep us grounded and frees our minds.

country side sunset

 

folk reflections

I have no green thumb but I’m lucky enough that plants outside home live perfectly without my help and I even get to enjoy their fruits! How gratifying it is to collect food from the woods and wild plants. During this year I’ve learnt about many more plants that are edible and it is eye-opening to discover that you can buy your groceries, grow them and even find some in the wild.

folk sunset
blackberries

 

Sweet snacks on the wild!

 

 

 

Don’t cry for Summer, cry for waves

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Summer doesn’t want you to be sad.
She is not going that far, and she’s coming back in 9 months. She’s just going on a trip, and you could even join her.
But the sea… ahhh the sea. She is not so kind. She’s that kind of girl who likes to play with your feelings. You never know when she’ll be ready to move forward or when she is leaving. She won’t give you waves when you are ready and will bring the best swell when you’re on duty. We forever chase her, like trying to catch the moon on the mirroring waters of a peaceful black lake. And she always slips away from our fingers and wetsuits.
She likes our salty tears as much as we like her salty foam. But she doesn’t want you to be sad, not specifically. You can cry with excitement and fun too. She’d be satisfied too, but who really knows with Sea?
However, we should cry with excitement indeed. We are lucky to be able to play where Summer and Sea hang out. Don’t you think? Will you join us?

 

coastal view
crystal clear water wave

There’s a special feeling when you get to the sea for a quick swim, with nearly no one on the beach, when the water’s still warm and the sun is strong on the skin.

water rainbows legs
wavy surface underneath

Who else loves to swim close to the bottom sand? It looks like there’s another sea behind, with its sand dunes (or waves) and all the reflections playing around…

waves under waves
blue landscapes

And what about the light rainbows? And the light shining on all the white shells looking like diamonds underneath your bare feet?

rainbow underwater sand waves

I have so much fun in the water, even when it’s for a short amount of time, even if it’s occasional and not a daily thing. It’s dreamy as well, and a very precious time I’ll recall for a long time.

underwater the face of happiness Not picture perfect, but surely filled with joy[/caption]

Barefoot Beach Style in the Mediterranean

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It was the first of September. It indeed smelled like fall. And it was that time again to go check the beach and spend the morning breathing in the salty air.

How good it feels to walk barefoot through the beach and forest, by the sea, with a gentle sun and the perfect temperature to wear summer clothes without sweating it out! Will totally do it again.

 

I’m sure that if you have stuck around, if you have already been reading or watching my pictures, you may have seen this beach. Well, some have Byron Bay, I have what we like to call Waikiki beach. I may love to discover new places but I  really enjoy spending time and watching the places I already know in a different light as well. And the more time I spend there, the more I appreciate them.

 

 

We walked a few miles (5?) on the sand, over pine old leaves on the warm and wet soil of the forest and over the seaside rocks. It was like having a massage and my body started to feel the move again after a long week of sitting in the office’s chair.

 

We ended the hike with a good swim playing with the waves, bodysurfing in the warm water and trying to stay longer. Sadly, I was so busy having fun that I didn’t get to bring the camera into the water to share those funny waves.  How I get to move and exercise at the beach is something exceptional that surely makes this girl’s muscles feel alive.

 

 

Those walks always run fast by but the beach will still be here at the same spot, and we will be back soon. We people come and go but our beloved places we’ll still be here (as long as we don’t destroy them in the meantime).

But I’m coming back soon, though it will be a cooler day. And then on warmer days, I’ll return again.

 

PS: I just love so much these blues and greens we’ve got here by the Mediterranean Sea.

Sweet new designs that will make you dream awake

Create, New

Lee este post en español ~ Llegeix aquest article en català

Ice pop dress - Awakening Dream collections

It’s been quiet around here and it’s taken just a bit longer than expected for me to come and tell you the story of my new things. But I’m back and fully charged. Let’s do this!

Give them bananas dress
THE STORY OF “THE AWAKENING DREAM” COLLECTION

Centuries ago, born by the beach and looking at the sunsets right behind the mountains, there was a wind that blew relentlessly but softly over the coastal beaches and the endless roads that went north. The sun was pouring its kisses over all the thirsty skins laying on the sand and the fruits radiated their smells and sweet juices to water the arid soils.

That wind became a summer breeze blowing in all directions. It couldn’t stop exploring the world. Now it travels around the Earth looking for you, for the next person to inspire and take into a summer dream journey.

pssst… they say this breeze is a muse that presents herself to those who fall asleep looking at the clouds. Just saying…

 

Give them bananas Dress

Wearing the Give Them Bananas Dress

 

Ice pop dress

Ice Pop Dress

 

Eyes on fruit dress
eyes on fruit dress
Eyes on fruit dress

Eyes on Fruit Dress

have a nice day leggings

Have Nice Day Leggings and Warm Ground Tank top

teal waters
we need to talk tank top

We Need to Talk Top Tank and Have a Nice Day Leggings

 

we need to talk

We Need to Talk Tank top and Rainforest River Sounds Leggings

 

Frosted mornings

Frosted Mornings Tank Top and Forest Wanderings Leggings

 

palm margallĂł
summer mirage

Summer Mirage Tank Top  and When the Sun Goes Down Leggings

 

Lusurious tee

Luxurious Long Sleeve Tee

 

See you at the other side of (my) Summer! 

You can check all available products on the shop. Also, follow along on social or our Telegram Channel to see all pictures from this beautiful shooting.  

La historia de “THE AWAKENING DREAM” COLLECTION (ColecciĂłn el Sueño del Despertar)
Muchos años atrĂĄs, nacido en el regazo de la playa y mirando los atardeceres detrĂĄs de las montañas empezĂł su existencia un viento suave. Suave pero imparable soplava ligero por playas salvajes y por interminables caminos que se alejaban hacia el norte. El sol brillaba con fuerza como si quisiera derretir las pieles de aquellos posados en la arena, pidiendo a gritos mĂĄs calor y mĂĄs luz que les oscureciera, y la fruta maduraba y radiaba su olor y dejaba fluir sus jugos para calmar los ĂĄridos suelos. Ese viento se fue convirtiendo en una brisa de verano, esparciĂ©ndose en todas direcciones. No podĂ­a parar, querĂ­a seguir viendo mundo. Ahora viaja por todo el globo buscĂĄndote, buscando a aquella pesona a la que inspirar y llevarse en un sueño de verano. pssst… dicen que esta brisa es una musa que se penetra a los que se duermen mirando las nubes…. Puedes encontrar todos los diseños en la tienda.  TambiĂ©n puedes seguirnos en las redes o unirte a nuestro canal de Telegram.

 

La histĂČria de   “THE AWAKENING DREAM” COLLECTION (la col·lecciĂł El somni del despertar)
Fa segles, nascut vora la platja, mirant amunt cap a les postes de sol rera les muntanyes, habitava un vent que bufava sense parar perĂČ suaument; des de les platges costeres fins a les carreteres infinites conduent sempre al nord. El sol vessava carĂ­cies sobre totes les pells esteses a la sorra, sedentes de llum i calor. I mentrestant, les fruites de la temporada, dolces i madures, desprenien les seves olors i preparaven el suc amb el que regar els sĂČls Ă rids. A poc a poc, aquest vent va anar esdevenint una brisa d’estiu,  estenent-se en totes direccions. No podia deixar de voltar mĂłn. Ara viatja per tota la Terra i et busca a tu, la prĂČxima persona a la que inspirar i a qui emportar-se en un viatge de somni d’estiu. pssst… diuen que aquesta brisa Ă©s la musa que es presenta a aquells que es queden adormits mirant els nĂșvols. Jo nomĂ©s ho dic… Pots veure tots els productes disponibles a la botiga. TambĂ© ens pots seguir a les xarxes o unir-te al nostre Canal de Telegram per veure totes les imatges d’questa bonica sessiĂł.   
spring lettering

Spring and other exciting things

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Just a generic intro

We are well into Spring and we’ve been able to start feeling the season. Warmer temperatures and much longer days. It seems like we are ready for summer. I can even smell it, don’t you?

I’m so happy I’ve been able to go surfing a couple of times already. The water is still so cold (I’m not a fan of cold) but the softer weather is very welcoming.

 

What’s new?!

So it’s time for new things to see the light!!  Today I’m bringing you a couple of freebies, the announcement of what’s to come in the shop (new products, follow along to see which) and some behind the scenes.

Here one of the packages I’ve received to test the new additions to the shop!

 

 

Now a drumroll, please! Because the first products I have to present you are something really new! So…

 

Summer dresses!!! Sleek, elastic and as wonderfully comfortable as all the other clothes I have in the shop 😄

I’m so excited! They fit so well and the colours are amazing, as always.

Also, I have a long sleeve shirt that we’ll go up in the Stargazing category next month! Wanna know a bit more? I can’t stop myself from telling you! It’s white with a graphic in the front, super soft and feminine.

Where are the photos, you’ll ask!

I know, an image will tell best but I’m still working on preparing the photo shooting. But it will happen soon. I’m so excited! I have many ideas and want to prepare the best presentation for you guys.

 

 

In the meantime though, let me give you something!

My sister just got a new bright amazing phone and you know what you need time and time again for your pocket friend? Beautiful wallpapers. (also a matching case… would you like me to design you some phone cases?)

So here they go, I bring you not two but four phone wallpapers ready to download in the shop (for FREE! đŸ€©)

Click on your favourite one below to go to the product page.

~ Fun Small Waves

~ Shells and Tans

~ Welcome Spring

~ Goodbye Winter

 

Some behind the scenes

Here some process images (I apologize for the quality… you know I’m not a fan of shooting while working).

When doing the letterings I like to start with a very rough sketch, vectorize the letters in the computer, print and redraw it and add all the illustration and decorations. Then I trace it all and paint it in watercolours. And then I edit it as needed to get to the desired final result.

 

See you soon with new beautiful things to brighten the season! 🌟💙

 

xx

Lena

 

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Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring

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Winter seems to be gone and spring is blooming but I wanted to share with you a bit of the latest adventures… and a bit of snow, in case you didn’t get enough.

Let it snow before it’s too hot

Do you remember how I said it was more likely to snow after the new year? Well, it happened again. It snowed at the end of February (and a bit more in March, just when spring was supposed to start).

The scenery was delightful and we had to enjoy it so… We went for a late afternoon hike (second set of photos) and to a very morning one (the day after) to see the peak of the mountain in its full “winter” splendour.

 

It looked totally as if we had stepped into a winter story, right at the other side of our door. My car had never piled up so much snow on it and I had never walked over snow as it kept snowing hard!

These are from the first day, the landscape seemed to finish just some steps forward to where we were standing.

 

Collecting more inspiration in the South!

But then, spring actually came and we went south. 8 hours south to be fair, to visit family. Though we had time to enjoy the place too! So much to see and so much inspiration!

I can see a collection coming out from here. Those white streets are from Priego de CĂłrdoba (Andalusia) and of course, the columns belong to the Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba. It’s amazing and so incredibly exciting to see that amount of decorative arts!

The Great Outdoors

 

See, I even found some beautiful colour palettes 😍

 

Then, back here there’s a lot of work to do and things to experience. In my next post, I’m telling you more about my creative projects and will have some presents for all of you! Don’t forget about me!

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Tides are changing – Tidal knowledge for surfers

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THIS POST WAS SPONSORED BY MY SURFING DREAMS (JK)

Tides are a funny thing. When we think about the beach we don’t usually think about the tides. And surely we don’t take into account how beaches change with tides. D’you know those paradisiacal beaches you see in travel sites in those wonderful photos? They may not look the same on low tide.
But how do tides work and what should you know about them?

Tides are sooo important when going surfing. I’m used to not thinking about them because in the Mediterranean they are almost inexistent. But whenever I go surfing to a new spot, I realise how dependent we are of the tide.

 

Picture by a surf mate đŸ€™

 

Surfing spots are very different and tides are a key factor in creating the best moment to surf. With surf forecasts, it’s easy to know when the tides are changing but you must know what’s the best condition for that beach. There are beaches that work best in high tide, others in low tide, some in the medium high tide and some others in the medium low tide.

 

Tides are created as a result of the gravity of the Moon and the Sun on the Earth and their movements.
Every tide lasts approximately 6 hours and there are two low tides and two high tides every day. Between the two high tides, half a day it’s gone (12h and 27 minutes).That’s because the Moon takes almost 25 hours to circle the Earth. So every day the tides come an hour later than the day before.

 

 

How’s that there are two high tides (and lows) if the Moon only takes one trip around the Earth a day? Well, it seems weird, right? While the water rises when the Moon is overhead your beach, it has the same effect when it’s just on the opposite side of the Earth (just below your feet). This is because the gravitational force of the Moon creates two water bulges that also move contrary to the movement of the Earth as a result of a centrifugal force (created from the difference in the rotation of the Earth – it rotates around an axis that isn’t exactly at the c

enter so one side will rotate faster giving some inertia to the second bulge of water).

The bulge on the side of the moon will be the high high tide and the one on the other side just a high tide (but it’s more noticeable on certain spots, for example, on caves or narrow indentations of the sea).

 

 

What’s the role of the Sun? Well, because of its distance from the Earth, its gravitational force doesn’t affect the seas as much as the Moon does, but when it aligns with the Moon and the Earth spring tides happen (when the high tides get higher). Conversely, when the Sun gets on a right angle with the Moon, the neap tides happen (the lowest of high tides).

Also, the distance from the Moon affects those bulges differently (you know, it doesn’t go round the Earth in a perfect circle, it’s more like an ellipse). So, when it’s closer to the Earth (perigee), the tidal bulges increase and they decrease when it’s at its furthest (apogee).

 

 

Further reading :

– (Quoody) Tides

–Physical Geography

– Science of tides

– How the tides affect breaking waves

 

 

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Also, don’t forget to check my shop for the most creative and beautiful products to take with you in your next surftrip.
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What am I doing with my life?

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That’s how I feel some days about the creative life.

…Like I’m not going anywhere. I’m in a loop, trying every day to overcome the same obstacles I found years ago. Now I have some things figured out but I’m still learning and stumbling in others. I miss being outdoors more often But my creative work happens in front of or near a screen. Moreover, I’m still struggling with this work to really work out. Am I too hard on myself for forcing myself to stay on the desk to pursue something that never looks closer? Am I missing my true callings and paths for being held inside for too long? Should I ever think about broadening, even more, my creative skills? What it is that I really want to do? What feels good and looks goods to me?

Nobody said a truly creative life was easy. And there are as many kinds of creatives as there are kinds of people. I’m always striving to do my best work and learning to do something new and create something even newer. My creative life is scattered and every idea I get makes it worse. Though I don’t always feel that’s a bad thing. I want to be doing visuals that I cannot see in the world right now, so a little experimentation is expected. I also want to do small things that are complex to do solo while pursuing other fronts. So maybe all it takes is more working hours, patience and a clear vision.

 

Now the nice stuff

A couple of weeks ago it snowed but now the sun is shining and its warmer than ever. Finally, I got to feel it all over my skin. Feels so good and energising to have it back. But that also means one thing: I’m getting back to take my boards and going to the beach reeeal soon. Waves are calling and I must go. (Oh, and climbing too)

But with many projects open that I can’t close yet and time running out, I will have to prioritise. Anyway, wanna know what’s in the works? I’m sure you’ll be inspired and motivated too if you see.

 

Sneak peaks here they go!

 

Patterns 💖

These are patterns and designs that I’ve made and that are just getting ready to become full products. But the best of them you’ll see in upcoming weeks!

Game devÂ đŸ€“

I started a game and made all of this in one afternoon (ok, maybe it’s not that much, but when I was younger I never got this far making a game, so I’m proud). I already had the idea. It will be a game for my character the Catsurf and this will be the Hippy Catsurf Game. I just need a couple more days and I’ll have a full game (with one working level at least). But when? Who knows. If you’d like to create a game try GameSalad or Stencyl.

3D modeling

I’ve been playing with 3D software in order to create models that I can use with my interior designs and maybe even combine them with my own clothing design. I’m also learning to create more things so I can use them in future designs (maybe I could transform some 3D objects into patterns? ( đŸ€ŻÂ There are just too many possibilities in this creative world). For the girls, I’m using MakeHuman, which is amazing and is reminiscent of the act of creating a Sim which is always nice. For more items and probably oceans and the like, I’ll be using Blender. It also brings many memories from when I was a teenager following Blender tutorials on my father’s work computer ten years ago (or more). These programs are open source and free to use which feels amazing. And they work in Mac, of course.

 

TIP for Mac users using MakeHuman : when I wanted to install the MakeHuman community plugin I almost went nuts. But it’s easy. You’ll need to follow the instructions and move the downloaded files to the Plugins directory. In a Mac, this means going to the app icon, right-click, Show Package Contents > Contents > Resources > plugins. If there’s a better way I didn’t find it.

TIP for Mac users using Blender : shortcuts in Blender are great for Windows but not so for Macs. In order to use the standard shortcuts press also the key at the left bottom corner (fn). If you don’t have a numpad you’ll also need to enable a simulation of it (Blender User Preferences > Input : tick Emulate Numpad box).

 

Also

Also, I’m preparing a little publication for the summertime that promises to be very fresh. I’m just starting out with it but is one of my most exciting projects. No images to show yet so all I’m telling is this:

 

 

Do you think I spread myself too thin and didn’t dive deep enough? Probably. I would love to be that type of creative artist that is so good at one thing, it looks like a lot easier to market. But I believe all my explorations are leading me towards one niche and I’m slowly finding my place as a creative. We’ll see.

Keep tuned and fuel your creativity!

And tell me about your projects in the comments or pm.

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My Artist Statement Illustrated

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For all those who haven’t followed along and need a bit of an introduction to my work, here I share with you my artist statement.

I work mostly with watercolours as my chosen medium, for their lightness, spontaneity and low environmental impact as well as the way they allow for textures, imperfect surfaces and shades of colour. I’m a formal graphic designer but I feel a great sense of accomplishment when working traditionally and find it very exciting to not be able to fully control the final result.

When I paint, design and illustrate I strive to create a connection not with me but with the viewer herself.

I want to portray nature, humankind and the sense of self and how all that is related. Through the image of a character, we can identify traits that we like, that we’d like to have or that we could even despise. But that makes us more conscious of who we are and how others are.

Self-knowledge is a big step to build lives that are more aligned with every individual and to build a better society.

Through this process we can also learn to connect deeper with others and explore our freedom and how we want to express ourselves.

 

Also, for me, nature is what allows us to live and become part of who we are (let’s not forget we are mostly water). It’s not that we endanger it, we endanger ourselves when failing to take care of it.

And it’s also fundamental to our leisure time. Even when we crave for places with pristine waters, paradisiac beaches and indomitable mountains and we are very willing to travel to enjoy them, we don’t normally put that much effort on taking care of the environment around us.

We should pursue caring appropriately for our surroundings as much as we do for likes. And I want to express all of this with my own voice, in a way that is modern and in context with our times and my generation, the millennials.

I’ve been exposed to art and illustration since my childhood and have many influences, from tv animes like Lady Georgie, the stories of Beatrix Potter, Spanish feminine comics from the 60’s ( and anything from that decade), film, literature and everything graphic design.

I work in Catalonia and have a strong link with the beach and the mountains and a sincere admiration for the surfing culture, tech interests and living unconventionally.

Now go check my portfolio !

 

New watercolour art (R)Evolution

Create, New

Hello friends!

Time flies around here and it seems like I’m just starting new and amazing projects but can’t get to the finish line. Luckily, that’s just my impression of things and time and some work are actually getting closer to seeing the light. And that’s probably because I’ve been deeply immersed in the ideas tank.

Before spring comes I wanted to paint some new characters while I’m starting many new projects in a little different direction. So we may say these are transition paintings. And for that, they’ve been named the (R)Evolution Series! Text is gaining importance, while also an implicit message addressed at firing motivation or a sense of power, determination and decisiveness emerges.

Now that they are done it’s time for reflection and getting back to the drawing board. So, I’m able to come up with new interesting concepts and images I want to build now. You can expect my colour palettes to stay on the same line but I will be incorporating some of those magic vibes from the Tropical Collection. I hope that nicer weather will accompany me in my pursuits and inspire me with its wonders. Also, hand-lettering was just showing up in these paintings but it’ll be gaining importance in the future (yay!). And I’ve been thinking about expanding the techniques I use. I love watercolours in a big way but I want to experiment a bit more and create more complex compositions and feelings. I’ve used other mediums in the past and had fun as well. But watercolours will still be my signature move. I’ve missed including more mystical references but I’m totally in exploring emotions, poses and references to the millennial (or just tech and current) world.

As usual, haven’t done a great job at documenting the stages of my work, we’ll keep improving though. If you’d like to see more, stick around for coming posts! I feel very creative lately!

PS: As you can see I’ve even built a digital stage for my new posters. I’m loving this aesthetic of combining digital and real worlds and will go on exploring it further soon.

 

watercolour art

Sketch and almost finished watercolour painting

 

artist workspace

My desk is blooming (in all senses)

 

wip watercolour painting

Interesting picture of the work in progress of Unapologetic

 

holding watercolour painting

Watching it in a better light, the figure is finished

 

You can find the four new posters as limited editions in the shop! Get it as a miniprint (a5) or a big poster size. Just click on the one you like the most.

 

BE FOUND

Be Found Watercolour Painting

 

 

WORLD’S DOMINATION

Go Plan World's Dominations Watercolour Painting

 

 

REBELLIOUS

Rebellious Watercolour Painting

 

UNAPOLOGETIC
Unapologetic Watercolour Painting

 

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Home decor links to checkout this season

Trends

New year, new projects, new changes. Who else likes to mix the travel bucket list with some interior and home decor ideas? Even if it’s not to apply them to your actual house (maybe you could try them in The Sims). I use Sweet Home 3D to play around and see how I want to distribute my dream home(s) and I can’t stop watching all the amazing rooms going through my Pinterest feed. If you are anything like me, you may like to read the articles below.

 

How will your home look in 2018?

The first one comes with a bit of surfing inspiration. Even when you don’t go surfing as often as you’d like, you can still sprinkle some surfer soul around in your home. From some evident showcase of your love for surf (like prints, boards or accessories) to following a style like this one showcased below at the Sfgirlbay blog.

 

modern surf vibes.

 

Are you aware of what’s going to be the big thing of 2018 in decor?

Well, no one knows for sure but here’s a guide to some likely trends (that you may have noticed already!).

Top Home Decor Trends for 2018

 

Fighting winter with colour

We are used to winter being cold, grey and pale only made a bit joyful by Christmas decorations. In this article, you’ll see it doesn’t have to be this way. Use prints and be bold and you can get a much more welcoming home for the already “sad” and dark days of the year.

Finnish Interior Designers Show How Bold, Colorful Prints Might Be the Best Way to Greet Cold Weather

 

One space, many moods

Every space has lots of possibilities. Wouldn’t you like to explore all of them? Well, there isn’t a virtual reality app that lets you do that (even though there are similar things around) but here you’ll see a photographic report displaying what 10 different people did to their identical apartments (not designer stuff).

These fascinating photos show how 10 different people customize identical apartments in the same building

 

Pantone Ultraviolet

Finally, about the colour of the year. Ultra-violet. How are we supposed to use it in our homes? I understand it’s a great colour to play in fashion but what about in decor? For some answers, read this article.

 

 

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email messaging books icons pattern

3 Digital Tools That Can Increase your Productivity

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I can say that I’m constantly surrounded by the best advice. I listen to multiple podcasts, I read books and articles and get a good number of newsletters. Many of them tell me about the tools that most productive, successful people use. They usually give some of their personal favourite tips on organising their work, life or both. So, as you know, there are thousands. There are people using Slack for working with teams while some others use Asana and before these apps they used just email or Dropbox. There are those who use Evernote, others use paper. Today I wanna share just my three favourite tools (applications). The ones I would even pay for. They do not belong to just one category but I’ll share along why they are so useful.

 

pattern of books icon

 

A tool for writing, organising your writing and even your business

Imagine you wanna write a book. You start scribbling down ideas. Then you add notes. After that, you do some research. Save research files, links and websites. Add your first rough sketches. You make an index and a table of contents for the book. Also, add the structure. Prepare scenes, characters and key events. You start writing chapters. You move things around. Finally, you end the book, you pack everything and it’s done.

Well, there is an application for that and it’s called Scrivener. It’s power go far beyond writing books. But if book writing is the case, it has templates (and you can find more online) ready to help you with a novel, poetry or anything you have to write. Though, if you are a true creative, there are many more things you can accomplish with that.

If you’re a blogger, for example, you could make very good use of it. In fact, I’d love to be using it more for blogging, but I have this thing for writing directly on my WordPress. One day I’ll improve on that.

Wanna know what I really use it for? For all of my business. As I said, you can organise files into folders, save webs, add descriptions and so much more. So I read this book called She means business in which the author explained a bit about her system – using Asana. But I realised that to me, it made much more sense to use Scrivener.

In that way, I have a structure in which  I save my ideas, templates, resources concerning the different aspects of the business, from product ideas to marketing and outreach. I had tried it a very long time ago and finally, I bought the latest version of the App Store. It’s quite inexpensive so if you’re one who writes a lot, this might be a good investment (also, I plan to write a few books in my lifetime so it could come in handy).

 

email love icons pattern

 

A tool that is making email less painful

Email is that thing we all love and hate at the same time. I love it quite a lot. I would even change my mobile phone to just email if I could. But I’m not a big fan of having to go and send emails at the time I write them or later on. I don’t like to be thinking all the time about that email that has to be sent at what time and don’t want to be there to press the send button. I also have some recurrent emails that have to be sent periodically.

So, there must be a better way right? Yes, and it’s called Right Inbox. It lets you schedule emails so you can send them whenever you want. If you are writing an email at 1 am, you can have it sent at 9 am and you’ll look so much more professional. There’s a free version that lets you schedule like 10 emails a month and you can customize everything time and date related. In this way, you can write a draft, check it’s good enough to hit send, but then maybe it turns out it’s not the right time. Maybe I want it to be opened in the afternoon, or maybe on Monday morning. Then, I would schedule it and could leave happy to enjoy the weekend. Isn’t that true magic?

Also, it could be paired with the Mailtrack feature (shhh, don’t tell anyone about it) and you’ll be notified when your recipient opens the email. Very handy to know if that email address is really working or, if it’s a matter of high priority, if you need to make a phone call instead.

messaging icons pattern
A tool to talk how you wanna talk to who you like to talk and so much more

Let’s face it. I never liked WhatsApp. Now that it belongs to Facebook I dislike it even more. I just have it because most people use it. And from time to time I have to communicate with them. I’d prefer to send an email but… it’s this thing about having to do what the crowds do. Probably the crowds don’t do all I need to do because then they’d be using something different.

The thing is I spend most part of the day on or by my computer. I have a mobile phone, but it’s more like an emergency thing or entertainment on the go. I don’t like to check the phone. It’s unproductive, time-consuming and, why should I take a look at a small screen when I’m in front of a bigger one? Also, who is happy enough with emojis? I like to use GIFs and stickers to communicate in one-on-one (sorry Instagram Stories). I did once that thing of pairing the WhatsApp with the laptop. It was so useless. Having to read a QR on the phone and then have it by my side…

Although, there’s a messaging app that is quite better. It’s Telegram! Famous because it has always had a concern for security it has many more features than WhatsApp. Yes, it’s secure, but I don’t know how to explain much of it. I can tell you though that you can make messages disappear in a time slot you choose, having private conversations that will go blank.

There’s a desktop application you can use. You can send images (and choose if you want them to be optimized or not) and many more files. There are thousands of stickers! The big, funny, more representative type of communication after emojis. There are gifs and video and voice notes. Also calls, muting option, passcode and all of that a messaging app needs. There exist bots that use it (in a good way). And you can message yourself! Why? To save links, send files (from my phone to my laptop for example), take notes, etc.  I type much faster on my laptop keyboard so it’s quite nice to be able to talk to friends through that. So please, don’t hesitate and get Telegram!

What are your favourite tools and why? Tell us in the comments.

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My 6 travel hacks illustrated (packing anywhere)

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Ready to pack and leave towards a new adventure? Here, my favourite hacks for preparing before leaving

We all know the importance of preparing your suitcase, or better, your backpack before going on a trip. You only have to type “how to pack” on Google and you’ll find endless resources about how you should pack. And they are really good, so I’m not going to show you how to do that. But there a few steps that have been really really useful to me for when going away.

 

My hacks before going on a trip

– If I know I’m going away for more than a couple of days and knowing that I have spare time or will be flying/train/whatever I’ll make sure I take my Kindle with me. It’s not only great for entertainment – and honestly, long flights are the best moment to tackle that Goodreads list that has pending reads from 5 years ago. What’s more, you can store dictionaries inside, as well as any text resource you found on the internet. Also, you can navigate the web too, in case something happened to your phone. And it’s great for storing digital versions of your important documentation.

– In the same line, I loved having a private folder in my Drive where all my important documents, copies and research for the travel were. In the last trip, I shared it with my sister who wasn’t coming so she could help us in case I couldn’t access them and needed them emailed, printed or just a quick check for info. It did help in consulting about our travel insurance. When you’re on the go, some help from home can be a great relief.

 

– One of my musts before leaving: saving offline maps from all the sites I’m planning to go. I know there are people who still don’t know about it but it’s extremely helpful. Now that we can go almost everywhere in Europe without being charged for Internet use seems less relevant. But still, there are some small countries where that doesn’t apply. And what about the first day in a new country without a phone? It’s quite useful to have google maps working without the Internet. Usually, the GPS functionality would work anyway so it can help you find your accommodation the first day in the new city. Now, how does it work? Here are the instructions.

Zipped plastic bags (those used for food) are the greatest thing to pack everything in your backpack. If you choose different sizes you can organize your clothing and all items by size, type and usability. Also, you can squeeze all air out and you’ll get a vacuum packaging. A similar thing is the now so popular packing cubes. But if you want to try one of both, start with the zipped plastic bags, they are a cheaper option, plus less weight and less space.

 

A portable power bank. It is a must. Not only you don’t know when and where you’ll run out of battery but even if you don’t, you may need to connect multiple things to just one or two plugs. If you charge first your power bank, you’ll be ready to go, able to charge multiple items at once and always charged! Choose a good one depending on your needs (more power or less weight?)

Paper list of what you are taking. No digital here. And I’m not saying it just because I like to design printable lists. It’s easier to visualize and count and see more things missing when you can handwrite, cross and draw all that you’re taking. It’s good advice too to start your list several days before living and checking the list many times to see if there’s something you should add (or cross out).

 

 

Finally, take care of packing well. Fill the gaps (no room for air in the backpack). You should play Tetris for a while and manage to have your stored items organized in a way that you get easy access to the most used ones and everything is packed using the less amount of space possible. But for more nice packing tips I found this article, which it’s cramped with wise advice. Take a look.   http://herpackinglist.com/2017/04/how-to-pack-minimalist-packing-list/

 

 

Organise your digital life : minimal check

Lifestyle

Did you ever find yourself lost in a sea of files and archives, the desktop full of things you don’t remember, the status bar showing 20 different icons, notifications every 10 minutes and a dock full of applications?

Maybe it’s time you strategize your digital life and organise your Mac. It will make your life so much easier. This way, you’ll know what you really need to save on your hard drive, you’ll need less space (meaning you’ll have to erase things less often) and your interface will look cleaner and nicer. Because there’s enough noise out there to have it on your computer too. Or phone. Nowadays, these devices are our second home.

 

A place for each thing and everything in its place

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The best way to start is to organize your folders as you need, and have as many folders as you’d like. In a way, your mac (or pc) will probably help you a bit. Movies, Music, Documents and Pictures have their own folders already. Do you use them for that? Instead of saving your newest pictures to a document folder with the name of your camera you could try and use the pictures folders. If you download a book, movie or picture don’t let it rest in the downloads folder. Download it right away into the folder they belong to or move them without waiting.

 

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For photos, I don’t use the Photos application. First of all, it uses far too space.  Also, I’d have to manually select the pictures I want to copy on my hard drive or move the whole library around. In addition, it makes me go through a long menu to be able to open them on Photoshop. I’d rather use Image Capture to load the pictures into the camera and choose where to store them. Then I just preview them or drop them into the app I need to.

 

 

đŸ–„

The best way to have a clean desktop is to not store anything in there and keep everything organised. You should move it to the right folder or make a new one in the right category. I have this bad habit of leaving these things I think of “temporary” in there but they end being around for ages. The worst thing is that they could actually be in the trash right now or in their own folder.