By Kristin Armstrong
So few people today actually sculpt or paint or put ink to parchment in fine calligraphy. It seems like relatively few people own ballet shoes, play an instrument, or write poetry. If art is not part of our career or a longtime hobby, we can almost forget about it. Yet our soul yearns for it. Have you recently looked at a bright orange sunset and felt a pull in your chest? Or heard an old song that strums you right back in time? Or read a paragraph in a book that was so stunningly fine you had to read it again, and fold the corner of the page? Or watched a scene in a film, acted with such precision and perfection, that you forgot it was a movie, and realized you were holding your breath?
That feeling is the same as the rumbling of a hungry stomach, except it’s your spirit that’s starving.
I know there is a part of me that only art can access. I remember being in a terrible place at a certain time in my life when I was miserable, withered and shaky. I tried everything: therapy, friends, running, more running, wine, more wine — you name it. Nothing, not sweat nor tears, could drain the ache residing in the pit of me. That was until a dear artist friend suggested I borrow some time in her studio. I put a paintbrush in my hand and a large canvas on the easel — and set myself free. I painted for hours, angry lashes of red and depths of brooding blue. I didn’t notice the passage of time or the tears on my face, because at long last, I was finally letting go. A clot broke free and it was like circulation to my soul was restored.
This is what I mean about art. We were created to long for beauty. We were created to create. We were created to pause and enjoy, and tend to the place inside us that requires tending.
Music is one of the most accessible forms of art available to us today. It’s in our car, our homes, our workplaces, our computers, our phones, and available live all over our musical city. We have certain music we like to run with. Music we like to play as we pour a glass of wine, chop vegetables and start cooking. Music for dinner parties. Music by the fire. Make-out music. Pool party tunes. Travel playlists for headphones on the airplane. Road trip music. Get psyched or get focused or get calm before big event music. Getting dressed to go out music. Need to fall asleep music. Need to remember my youth music. Need to remember someone I love music.
Music is art because it is a creative medium that causes us to transcend. It opens our hearts and minds, it liberates stored memories, and it connects us to ourselves and to others. It defines us by eras, yet simultaneously frees us from time and age. It takes us back and it carries us forward, and yet it helps us root more deeply in the present.
We need music. If you have taken it for granted or forgotten your favorites, return to it like a lost love. Dust off your old turntable and cherished albums, there is nothing like the soothing hum of needle scratch. Make the playlist or command Pandora to blend one to match your mood. Turn it up loud in the car and sing like no one is listening. Rock out in the shower. Dance around your kitchen. Spice up your workout or your sex life. Chill out on a rainy afternoon. Stop saying you are going to go see live music, and actually go see live music. Find your art, and your rhythm, again.
Illustration by Joy Gallagher
by Joanna Steblay
As the warm weather begins to set in and patio parties hit our calendars, we can’t help but embrace that summertime has returned to Austin. If you’re anything like us, you’ll be celebrating the return of the season with decadent ice cream, healthy smoothies and icy cocktails from your favorite local spots.
For those days when it’s too hot to venture out, we went to Austin’s sweet treat professionals and compiled the ultimate collection of DIY recipes to make from your home. Click through the galleries below to learn how to make everything icy and sweet, from poptails for date night to ice cream sandwiches for a dinner party.more
The spring edition of the Renegade Craft Fair returns for its seventh year in Austin May 14-15 at Fair Market. With over 125 makers on the roster, the scene is sure to be bustling with local artisans and DIYers slinging their unique, one-of-a-kind wares. In addition to great shopping, the RCF offers activities, special showcases and plenty of food and drink options for visitors. This year, celebrate your hard work shopping with a snack from Burro Cheese Kitchen and Lucky Lab Coffee Co. before commemorating the afternoon with some snapshots from Magnolia Photo Booth Co. But before...more
by James Ruiz
Inspired by the beautiful outdoor living spaces featured in our May feature The Space Between, we went window shopping and found some great outdoor furniture and accessories to liven up your outdoor patio, porch and pool. Flip through the galleries below to see how you can add a pop of color and style to your outdoor hideaway.more
Hundreds of people are moving to Austin each day, and downtown is one of the major hubs of growth for the city. Local real estate expert Jude Galligan discusses smart urban growth and what to expect this year as the skyline continues to evolve.
Your blog keeps Austin updated on the latest news in downtown. What is the most exciting development happening right now?
From my point of view, the most exciting development is the Waller Creek District Master Plan. Decades in the making, this transformative project came to life after designers competed for the contract. It is finally coming to downtown, bringing an imaginative chain of parks,...more
by James Ruiz
As you flip through the pages of our February Love Issue, one thing you’ll notice is the beautiful blooms that pop up throughout the magazine. We got some major googly eyes for the bouquets featured in our "Real Weddings" features, and earmarked the TRIBEZA Wedding Guide for even more Pinterest-worthy petals.
Instead of letting all that inspiration go to waste, we tried our hand at flower arranging to see what we could create. Since we consider ourselves floral design novices, we asked a few top designers...more