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In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Muse.”

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“Hi, I’m Sam

I’m almost at the age of four-teen

Beside my native language,

I can understand a little bit English, too

I’m friendly, chatty and sassy sometimes”

Yes, he’s Sam, he’s not mine, but my muse 🙂

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Sunday Watch – Alexa Meade: “Your body is my canvas”

“Alexa Meade takes an innovative approach to art. Not for her a life of sketching and stretching canvases. Instead, she selects a topic and then paints it—literally. She covers everything in a scene—people, chairs, food, you name it—in a mask of paint that mimics what’s below it. In this eye-opening talk Meade shows off photographs of some of the more outlandish results, and shares a new project involving people, paint and milk” – TED

Works of art, like a brief novel, can definitely narrate stories or simply express an aesthetic feeling. Alexa Meade is a talented artist who creates plenty of extraordinary stories in a remarkable way. She is a traditional shape painter, but she works on an unusual canvas: the actual human body, or even real objects. For instance, this brilliant artist paints directly on her subjects such as the people, models, as well as background around them, and then she turns real life people into seemingly 2D incredible works of art. Accordingly, she found a way to define her own unique style of painting through an extremely innovative technique.

Transit – 2009

Egg on Egg

The fascinating artwork titled “Egg on Egg” is a piece in her Still Life artwork collection, which comprises ephemeral paintings on top of food. This work is created in 2009 by using a real breakfast dish as a canvas. The same as other artworks, Meade uses a brush and her own mixture of nontoxic paints and indefinite ingredients to produce her paintings. She combines a classical concept of photography and her creativity to make a three-dimensional representation look like tow-dimensional representation. Her purpose is to convert the original art into something totally different, to make her living models into flat images. Her works make us confuse about our sense of space, which allows the subject to be completely collapse folded in the pictures of her illustrations. That is to say, Alexa Meade absolutely owns a spatial intelligence.

For reference: http://www.alexameade.com/

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Judge This – Chip Kidd ( TED Books)

“First impressions are the key to how we perceive the world, and are perceived by it. They are our introductions to everything: acquaintances, the workplace, products, experiences, retail stores, the Internet, entertainment, relationships, design. And based on our first impressions, we judge things.”

Chip Kidd, the author, is such a fortunate man. He was hired into publishing in New York City right after he finished his design class, and has been a book cover designer for the same company ever since.He works with the well-known luminaires and have the great opportunity to conduct his creativity freely.What we can find in this book is a fun, playful look at the importance of first impressions—in design and in life—from acclaimed book designer Chip Kidd. He has gathered a number of his best covers, and the real world design elements that inspired them, into a short, fast little book which you can read in an hour or two in your spare time this weekend.

First impressions are everything. They dictate whether something stands out, how we engage with it, whether we buy it, and how we feel. In Judge This, renowned designer Chip Kidd takes us through his day as he takes in first impressions of all kinds. We follow this visual journey as Kidd encounters and engages with everyday design, breaking down the good, the bad, the absurd, and the brilliant as only someone with a critical, trained eye can. From the design of your morning paper to the subway ticket machine to the books you browse to the smartphone you use to the packaging for the chocolate bar you buy as an afternoon treat, Kidd reveals the hidden secrets behind each of the design choices, with a healthy dose of humor, expertise, and of course, judgment as he goes.

Judge This is a design love story, exposing the often invisible beauty and betrayal in simple design choices—ones most of us never even think to notice. And with each object, Kidd proves that first impressions, whether we realize it or not, have a huge impact on the way we perceive the world.


Photo: toryburch.com

Photo: toryburch.com

Chip Kidd is a designer/writer in New York City. His book cover designs for Alfred A. Knopf, where he has worked nonstop since 1986, have helped create a revolution in the art of American book packaging. He is the recipient of the National Design Award for Communications, as well as the Use of Photography in Design award from the International Center of Photography. Kidd has published two novels, The Cheese Monkeysand The Learners, and is also the author of Batman: Death By Designand the coauthor and designer of True Prep, the sequel to the beloved Official Preppy Handbook. His 2012 TED Talk has been viewed 1.2 million times and is cited as one of the “funniest of the year.” He is most recently the author of the bestselling GO: A Kidd’s Guide To Graphic Design.

Recommended by TED

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Monday Quote – Do something good each day


I started to feel a bit down this Monday morning, just because of a relationship issue with my friend. Thinking about that distracted me from concentrating on the lecture in class. I had been in bad mood all the morning until I received a sweet message from my boyfriend, “Do me a favor, smile”. Yes, I did. I smiled and wrote down another “very sweet” message and sent back to him. You can also do the same thing for yourself. Take about 10 minutes each day (before going to bed is the best time), write down anything fun, interesting, good thing have happened to you today. You don’t have to be happy all the time, but start such a habit like that may improve your mood, and get you thinking positively.

- From my sweetheart, 05.18.2015 -

– From my sweetheart, 05.18.2015 –

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Happier in 7 seconds


You might have heard about the term “carpe diem”, which means “seize the day”, put aside all differences, all fears, all worries, and just go for it, make the most out of that part of time. Since that day when I watched a movie named Dead Poets Society (1989) which was about an English teacher John Keating (Robin Williams) inspires his students to discover their love for poetry and seize the day, I found out that happiness is not about achieving something big, but savor every moments in your life. Let’s “Carpe Diem” more often or you will miss out on life and never truly be happy. Here’s my own practices:

– Give someone a compliment. I often tell my friend something like “you’re so pretty/fashionable today”, these sweet words make her smile for sure, and I’m happy too.

– Say “Good morning, have a nice day!” to strangers, taxi/bus driver, or the cashier that you see on your daily route. Believe me, that would be a good start for your beautiful day!!

– Sharing! The keyword here is share:) I shared my umbrella with a girl in a rainy day at the bus station. I hadn’t known her before, but I just stood next to her and give her my umbrella to keep her books from getting wet. I got such a great feeling that day!

– Take photos! Don’t hesitate to capture lovely moments, Maybe something funny, or interesting happened that you witnessed, or just an awkward moment of your boyfriend. These photos can bring you a grateful feeling when you look back, maybe, 10 years later.

– (updating)

I also read some ideas from Eric Barker for your reference:

  • Take a nap. Studies show we can process negative thoughts just fine when we’re exhausted — but not the happy ones.
  • Hug someone. Corny? Maybe. But it works.
  • Work on a hard problem that makes you think. Studies show if your brain is dedicated to a mental chore, it can’t bother you as much with distressing emotions.

Reference: http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2012/04/what-are-seven-things-that-can-make-you-happi/

How about you guys? What’s your 7-second secret to be happy?