Defying What is Common

Inspiration in June…

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Around the World…

Leaving the daily and exploring the extraordinary…

Discovering unique cultures and expanding personal awareness…

Allowing curiosities to flourish and creating fresh, open minds…

Travel…something of much importance.

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As you travel to different places, new worlds awaken from their slumber. These new worlds hold in their grasp distinctive characteristics that allow enlightened development, as well as diversified glory. These new worlds allow you to examine and study remarkable histories, with years of torment and despair, as well as years of brightness and contentment. These new worlds give you the sparkling key to creativity with inspirations, as well as dreams thriving in the breathtaking landscapes of artistic variety. Opportunities arise for you in these new worlds, opportunities to experience life in cultured wonderlands, to learn different ways of life, to develop a clearer image of who you truly are. Traveling is a road to self-discovery, a road to understanding, a road to imagination.

In her first resort collection, Mary Katrantzou developed these ideas wonderfully, exploring the world that surrounds us with each design.

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Mary Katrantzou’s resort collection is a magnificent mixture of vivid, digital prints that reveal images from Katrantzou’s own travels throughout Asia, Europe, and South America. Scenes of apartments in São Paulo, vineyards in Italy, fields of flowers in France, bridges in Japan, lagoons in China, and more, are shown throughout this graphic collection.The visionary prints have a memorable, storytelling quality that give the viewer the chance to delve into fresh, unparalleled scenes of life, to experience the beauties of magical locations from around the world. The exploratory wonders of travel appear in each visual–the vast world of diversity appears. When looking at each incredible image, characteristics of differing lands emerge…the imaginings, inspirations, curiosities, and discoveries of travel arise from within.

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In this collection of travel, nature is shown exquisitely with a surreal quality, with a technological modernity, a digital design–overlapping images of roses blooming on trellises, trees highlighted by airy blue and pink skies, flower fields of lush purple and red blossoming and surrounding majestic mountain ranges, clear lakes and crystal blue bodies of water reflecting and highlighting the dreamlike outdoor surroundings, yellow meadows dazzling in their boldness. Timeless stone bridges and modern apartment complexes also radiate. With embellishments of sequins and sheer…with exaggerated hues on an expressive palette, the structured, as well as flowing designs of circle skirts, capes, biker jackets, silk dresses, peplum accents, and more, shine.

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These landscapes are depicted with an undeniable intensity, with an artist’s mind and eye…

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The power of travel truly thrives.

Photo Credits: Mary Katrantzou

Exploration in the Deep, Mystical Blue

The ocean…

An expanse of majestic blue swirling gracefully with meaningful ideas and emotions…the fluidity of the waves carrying ideas of diversified value and deep feelings of hope, peace, joy, mystery, and excitement.

An expanse of majestic blue housing inspiration and thought, brightening to originality and power…the eternal breadth of its secrecy allowing imaginations and anticipations to awaken from their slumber, giving them the courage to rise to fruition.

The ocean…

An exploratory wonderland full of diversity and vivacity.

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The ocean sparkles in its variety–the body of water relishes in its distinctiveness, its divergence from the common and the repetitive. In the ocean, the ordinary does not exist. Rather, the depth gives rise to extraordinary, the magnificent qualities of infinite range, a medley of sizes, shapes, colors, textures, patterns, plants, and creatures. The ocean produces a world full of unlimited luminosity and mixture…with the magical hues and endless shades, the breathtaking glows and intense designs, the enriched blooms and exquisite tones. It is an intricate miscellany of vibrant corals and sponges, of crustaceans and oysters, of starfish and stingrays.

And Marco Zanini, the designer for Rochas, uses the shore and the ocean as his inspiration for the Rochas Resort 2014 collection.

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Zanini uses the theme of the sea tremendously in this resort collection. Not only literally incorporating the creatures from the ocean on the intricately detailed pieces of design, Zanini also absorbs the ocean’s endless diversity when creating this fantastic assortment of fashion. Each piece of this mirthful collection holds an undeniable uniqueness, a variance in texture, cut, color, silhouette, and overall design. Each piece is crafted with a quirky, uplifting eccentricity, coming together to form an eclectic blend of subtleties and extravagancies. Like the beautiful expanse of majestic blue, the Rochas Resort 2014 collection, with lightheartedness and gaiety, delights with innovative varieties and stunning, aquatic distinctions.

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With prints of oysters, crabs, stingrays, and starfish on tops, bags, jackets, pants, shorts and dresses…With colors of pronounced and faded purple, milky brown, pure white, rusty red, royal, aqua, navy, and pale blue, light pink, mint and lime green, gold, and orange…With vinyl coats and platform clogs…With collared, button down short and long sleeve shirts and polo shirts…With bermuda and higher cut shorts and flared, a line, as well as pleated skirts…With sailor pants and wide leg trousers…With striped pajama silhouettes and chimerical day dresses and gowns…

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Each design goes through a metamorphosis, becoming an entirely novel creation that leaves a lasting impression.

Each design resonates within the deep, mystical blue ocean.

Photo Credits: Rochas  

The Woman Behind the Painting

While looking at an artistic masterpiece, fascination cannot help but arise within me when I take a look at the painted persons in the work that move with such an unforgettable presence, that speak with magnificent tones, that feel the surroundings, relationships, and emotions that live amongst them, that stare with storytelling eyes of depth, that travel on journeys to breathtaking lands, and that wear fashions that are significant in the themes and stories they notably emanate. Fascination cannot help but arise within me, especially when I take a deeper look at these painted persons, when I take a look at the females behind the painting, the female models that dazzle with a vital presence.

The models that are painted in artistic works have always captured my attention–who were they? Where were they from? What is their story? I have always been mesmerized by the lives of these interesting females, always intrigued by their movements and sights in daily life…the historic moments that they witnessed, the talents that they came across, the occupations that they delved into, the lives they carried out. I have always been mesmerized by these models who wear fashions that are so important to works of art…fashions of embroidered, velvet gowns, as well as feminine, airy summer dresses, fashions of magnificently wide, patterned skirts, as well as modernly defined, freshly cut slacks, fashions of conservative evening wears, as well as coquettish, bold undergarments.

Victorine Meurent is one of these models that capture my attention.

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Manet, Edouard (1832-1883) - The Street Singer, 1862, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Victorine Meurent was a famous model for painters such as Edgar Degas, Alfred Stevens, and especially, Édouard Manet. Born to a family of artisans, Meurent came from a poor, working-class background. She began modeling at the age of sixteen with Thomas Couture, as well as performing musically in cafés during her years. And she had a powerful desire and firm ambition to make a name for herself as a female artist (which she did succeed in fulfilling by taking painting classes at the Académie Julian and having her works appear at the 1876 Salon and other future exhibitions). Meurent was known as Manet’s favorite model, appearing in numerous, gender-breaking works, that defied the constraints and moral commonalities of society. In these works, the modern desires and personalities of both Meurent and Manet rise to the surface. Meurent’s own independence appears, her desire to tear away at gender norms and to succeed in a profession not readily acceptant of women, her desire to live a life uncommon for women at the time in society and to paint freely, without restriction. Manet’s naturalistic depiction of the world appears, his creative, avant-garde mindset that wanted to challenge the traditional rules around him.

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The fashions in these works help to further reveal these thoughts of autonomy and conviction and these actions of rebellion and defiance. In Manet’s works such as Young Lady in 1866…(shown above), Victorine Meurent is depicted wearing a pale pink, satin dressing gown, a peignoir, that is only meant to be seen and worn indoors. This visibly intimate article of undress and Meurent’s teasing pose help to signify both Meurent’s and Manet’s modern outlooks on society and life, in general. Meurent is not painted with the following and praise of conservative, customary guidelines–Meurent is painted as a woman with a brazen attitude and a seductive stance, a woman of a modern era. With the fashionable item of the peignoir worn, the alluring quality of boldness within Meurent is shown.

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In Manet’s works such as Luncheon on the Grass (Le déjeuner sur l’herbe)…(as previously shown in my May inspiration post, Barriers and Constraints are Broken), Meurent is depicted as a woman unafraid of judgements and established traditions. She is depicted as a woman who is proud of herself, her mind and her body, and uncaring of the rules society enforces. Meurent’s lack of clothing, along with the background female’s sheer white day dress, contrasting with the full contemporary day wear fashions of constrictive black coats and collard shirts worn by the surrounding men, further emphasizes Meurent’s own personal desire to break gender restrictions and Manet’s wish to remove restrictive moral conventionalities from expression. Victorine Meurent stares at the viewer with an aura of calmness, confidence, and modernity, demolishing female stereotypes and embracing liberation.

The female figures are fascinating in artistic works…

And the lives these women (models) behind the paintings really lived are just as fascinating.