PLEASURE & CHAOS || PART I: THE C R O S S R O A D S ||

A Collaboration with

THE M I G H T Y COMPANY

– – – – – –

“What is meant to be, is just that, and will unfold. Still, show some guts. Say to destiny, “I am calling the shots around here, go take a hike.”

-RUMI

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If you were to ask me where I’m headed, I would throw you a curve-ball and say, “hopefully somewhere I get lost.” Then again, I’ve never been one to give a straight answer to a simple question. Life seems too unpredictable not to play the same game. As a test of my self-awareness, I welcome the chaos of the unknown. I’m beginning to believe the sure-fire path to creating yourself requires getting lost…a little.

tresspassingThere was a confusing period where all I knew about myself was who I was not. I couldn’t explain it then, but by following my heart, I was confident it would lead me where I needed to be. If becoming lost meant I’d meet “a moment,” one that had the capability of reminding me just who I am, well then I’m certain I was wise in letting instinct be my guide.

A moment is far more complex than a simple label. It can be dynamic, as it has the capability to define in ways a word can not. “A moment,” such as the wind warmly greeting soft tousled hair, that has now become textured wisps, from dust in the air. As I reflect on this, it elicits a parallel memory from the day you and I met, and I let the wind carry me away.

– – – – – –

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Before me I see a road which meets in the middle and splits two separate ways. Torn between a place of safety and the unknown, I softly close my eyes as I slip away in a deep meditative bliss. I imagine my surroundings as my senses attempt to paint the landscape. I listen to the wind as it brushes tall feathered grasses which sway back in slight rebellion to the wind’s demand. As I escape into this daydreamers delight, I discover a place of repose; as you approach, and I alight.

In the midst of the cascading dance between wind and grass, I hear a voice that kindly calls me to relax. Instantly every muscle in my body calms as his voice soothes. It was in this instant my heart told me to open my sleepy eyes and awaken. I look up to greet smiling eyes, which mirrored the crystal-blue sky that hung overhead. One might say his sideways grin concealed a veneer of danger. I never was one to listen to the opinions of others, for they only noticed the obvious. It was only me that could see, he held all his power and meaning, behind those two eyes.

Locked in a gaze, I sink into eyes that genuinely smiled like my own as the sensation of butterflies stir within. In a blink of an eye, the moment evades me as my mind tries to make sense of these sensations and sends me into paralysis from over-analysis. He speaks again. Relief fills my mind and silences the voices in my head. An internal war begins to ensue, as I battle between the two: The path of feeling or logic.

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I found him–Or he found me

An informal harmony

of stable unpredictability

A life of excitement—we ignite the flame

and play with a fire

that neither of us could tame.

| Together we burn in a fury of Pleasure & Chaos |

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Down at the crossroads I was asked to make a choice, to listen to my feelings or a little voice of reason. Confused and unsure of which to trust, I remembered the one thing that brought me to this turning point, and that was my heart. I learned something that one fateful day; An unexpected encounter may not be easy to explain. People are placed here as we stumble along our way, to remind us who we are, and sometimes who we are not. It’s when you stay in the center of your own life that you begin to trust yourself enough that you may flow; and the more you can flow within, the more you can flow without.americanbarnmodernprom

Today I stand before you uncompromised, demanding who I am: I am that unknown path, the one you might hesitate to explore because you never know what you’ll get. Just know that’s okay with me, for I only want to see the wild ones. The ones who join me in dance, and rage on in jovial laughs, not kissing ass because we’re too busy kicking it.

Once again, I find myself down at the Crossroads. Whether you follow or not, that is up to you. As for me, I continue to take the unbeaten path. The one that encourages me to get a little lost, so that I’m encouraged to listen from within. In my heart I hold with me an unwavering hope, that I might come to find someone like you, who reminds me why I chose to get lost in the first place. For now all that remains is a trace of calmness amidst life’s chaotic storm. I thank you for that moment of pleasure, a warm breeze and a smile held the day’s treasure.

meetmeatcross| MAV M A N T R A |

Lead with the heart

 

THE ROAD TO M A S T E R Y

“Everyone holds his fortune in his own hands, like a sculptor the raw material he will fashion into a figure. But it’s the same with that type of artistic activity as with all others: We are merely born with the capability to do it. The skill to mold the material into what we want must be learned and attentively cultivated.”

– Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

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Many of my friends are aspiring artists like myself. Being a part of the youth culture here in Los Angeles has been an amazing experience. I feel so fortunate to have been surrounded by encouraging people with whom I share similar feelings of victory and defeat. Together, we trek along the road ahead, the road to Mastery.

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|| The Five Attributes of A Master ||

1) They take their work very seriously & consistently perform at a high level

2) They aspire to improve their skills

3) They’re precise clean in presentation

4) They’re impatient

5) They’re passionate

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Mastery is a skill in which one cultivates a greater control over reality, self, and others. This skill takes time to develop, and much like a treasured diamond, it’s created as a result of pressure. This pressure can be in the form of a crisis or deadline as well as constant work on a project.

As we begin to perfect our craft we become absorbed in it, feeling focused and energized. I know this because I’ve felt it and second handedly experienced it with my friends. It’s a time when ideas flow, people are less resistant to your influence, and you inspire others respect.

This high is not one that can be replicated. It is pure, giving us access to the heart of life and touching us to the core. When an art form has been mastered it has the ability to connect heaven and earth. Completely transcending space and time, it will spiritually move you to a new place and leave you forever changed. In this life, my ultimate goal is to achieve this level of greatness.

The biggest risk in attempting mastery is the word itself, attempt. If we only ‘attempt’ instead of ‘attain’ we have allowed our emotions to get the best of us. As much as I have experienced the ultimate highs, I have also felt the lowest lows of boredom, confusion, impatience, fear, and confusion. These limiting feelings bring the entire process to a halt if we can not learn how to manage them as they stifle our ability to observe and learn. This is in fact a process, an ebb and flow, which entails different stages.

|| THE HOLY TRINITY ||

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|| THE STAGES ||

 1). Observe. Follow the lead of others for gained clarity. This is where we begin to learn the rules of the game we’ve chosen to play.

2). Practice, practice, practice. Here we begin to gain fluency and master the basic skills, making room for new challenges to present themselves. Typically, this is the stage where emotions set in and many give up. When you find yourself in this “Tunnel of Challenge” you must remember why you set out to be a master in the first place, focus on the light at the other end and break on through the darkness.

3). Persistence. This is where we emerge into the light and begin to see the connections once invisible to us in that dark tunnel. Gaining confidence, solving problems, and working around weaknesses becomes effortless. Like a well-trained dancer, your moves are fluid, internalized and forever engraved. This is when we move from student to practitioner and bring our own style into play. This is also the time where we have learned the rules so well that we have the right to break them or even better, re-write them. For that reason alone, I must become a Master.

|| MAV MANTRA ||

I learned the rules well. Now watch me re-write them.  

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|| THE MUSES ||

Mastery by Robert Greene

Jiro Dreams of Sushi

Shen Yun 

G Y M CLASS HERO

“As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.”

– Henry David Thoreau

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Recently I’ve focused my energy on strengthening my inner power. This essence is something that can only be felt and therefore transcends any impermanence of the physical. Personally, I think this makes it even more desirable because once it has been achieved, it can never be lost. This mental workout has been great in breaking down several emotional and mental blocks that were previously holding me back.

The goal of this exercise is to free yourself from destructive self talk, old habits and patterns. Like most things in life, it’s easier said than done. One must first be willing to acknowledge the illusions or “problem areas,” and then consciously desire to fix them. Then and only then can one re-wire the mind to see what it wishes to believe instead of the impressions of the past. Once you can move past this barrier, you begin to regain a sense of strength that’s attached to the power of  c h o i c e.

The ability to create your own concept of reality holds so much power when you realize your external world is a result of your internal; it all stems from your imagination and what you choose to believe. I have been manifesting my reality by choosing which ‘truths’ to hold onto and which to let go. In addition to this I have also been visualizing positive outcomes I wish to see while recognizing the negatives from which I’ve grown. This process is like gardening the mind. First you remove the weeds to create a fresh space; then you plant the new seeds and watch them flourish. The outcome?

Restored balance and beauty.

Processed with VSCOcam with p5 presetThis technique has helped me transform any self-love, relationship, or abundance issues. I begin by releasing any stress caused by lower frequency feelings such as fear or anger and transform them into positive feelings such as faith and love. By giving myself adequate time, I patiently allow the negative vibes to evaporate while the good remain and permeate my being. I repeat this process everyday until I begin to see new pathways form in my mind, which lead me to new open doors. You see, perception is the key to unlocking the mind.

Much like physical exercise, this process of re-wiring the mind requires focus, dedication, repetition, and strength. The brain, like any other muscle in the body requires consistent workouts in order to tap into its power. Begin slowly and through repetition, gradually increase the amount in equivalent relation to your improved level of stamina. Over time it will become effortless and a part of your daily routine as we are creatures of habit.

If you so wish to begin a similar journey in self-improvement, I encourage you to try several methods until you find the one that works best for y o u. Don’t follow, just listen to your inner voice (which will get stronger with practice) and it will lead you to the finish line. For me, my exercise is to find comfort in my own skin and emerge into who I know I am destined to be, regardless of my past. In knowing this, I am already paving the way for things to fall into place with each progressive step taken. Struggle is disappearing and I’m beginning to feel this sense of lightness and grace take center stage as I dance through life.

My goal in mastering my mind is to become the best possible version of myself. Over the course of a year, I have realized I am my only component and in order to become who I wish to be, I must feel as if it is already mine for the taking. To help cultivate this mentality, I believe dressing the part plays a major role. My day can range anywhere from strength training at the gym, to a night on the town tearing up the dance floor, or a long day of modeling on set (which also tends to turn into a dance party). As spontaneous as I am, my Adidas Pro Model’s are suitable to my lifestyle and provide the reliability I need in a sneaker.

 If you place importance on looking good for a reasonable price I highly suggest checking out West Egg. This online retailer offers a variety of designer products, such as Adidas, for lower prices. As the queen of thrift, I have to say I thoroughly enjoy getting the value of a Givenchy bracelet for less. My next blog post will feature this beauty so stay tuned!

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|| MAV MANTRA ||

Are you dominating your thoughts, or are you letting them dominate you?

THE || O R I G I N A L || RED

“A gold medal is a wonderful thing, but if you’re not enough without it, you’ll never be enough with it.”

– Cool Runnings 

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|| MAV MANTRA ||

Win from within.

 

LITTLE MS. H A P P Y MEAL || 3.17.15 ||

Happiness Is A Day With You

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When I’m with you, 

I don’t need a whole lot. 

When I’m with you,

We make due with what we got.

When I’m with you,

You make me a little better

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When I’m with you,

I stop counting the hours of the day.

When I’m with you 

Everyday is a vacay.

When I’m with you,

I feel alive and new

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The-maverick-muse-michael-rousseau-photography-morgan-ryan-91It’s sad but true

But when I’m without you 

My day’s shaded in blue.

Because in you,

I found an Endless Summer.

-M.R.

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PHOTOGRAPHY ||

Mike Rousseau

OUTFITTED ||

Vintage Silk Thread, Red Bikini: American Apparel, Red Bandana, Earrings: J. Crew, Shades: Quay.

BIRDS OF P A I R A D I C E || 3.15.15 || H E R M O S A BEACH

“The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.”

-Albert Camus

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This weekend provided a taste for what I believe Summer 2015 has in store. The weather was hot, the nights were long, and the vibes were strong. Let the good times roll on, like the rockin’ sea below. Cheers to another weekend in paradise; this is only the beginning.

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s e a ling the d e a l

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Team USA, 2015

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Duckin’ Around

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Hermosa Beach, 2015

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Five o’ clock shadows and a smile between sweetened sips of tea. And I watch him, as life changes before my eyes.

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Shout out to Fender for sharing my photo

THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS || Feat. H A P P I N E S S BOUTIQUE

“The only real elegance is in the mind; if you’ve got that, the rest really comes from it.”

– Diana Vreeland

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Recently I teamed up with Happiness Boutique, an online fashion accessory and clothing company based out of Berlin, Germany. With their dazzling yet affordable statement pieces and “glass half-full” attitude, I was confident in uniting our brands. The item featured is the Honey-Bee Statement Necklace, a jewel-toned vintage piece inspired by natures pollinators. Similar to the necklace, Happiness Boutique is a community of positive individuals with a soul purpose to spread, create, and inspire beauty and joy for others to enjoy.

How can one define a subjective matter such as beauty or happiness? Can’t this be seen as dependent on the individual’s definition of the two? Personally, I have found that all we seek in the external world is already in our reach as we contain it all within. This is the primary reason I love using fashion and beauty to create, it’s the external expression of what I’m feeling in the moment.

In living in the present moment, you welcome a degree of awareness into your life. You actively begin to notice how you feel and how this translates into your body language. For example, when you f e e l lovely you can then outwardly embody that essence in your physicality as you present yourself to the world. This “feeling within” is virtuously reflected in the imagery created for this campaign. My partner, Evan Woods, truly brought to light how the beauty and elegance of the mind can be expressed in ones facial expression.

|| MAV MANTRA ||

Highlight the beauty within, then adorn it with a touch of personal style.

● ◎ ●

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For a classic yet modern take on vintage jewelry, I highly recommend visiting their webpage: Happiness Boutique! They offer free shipping and a customer reward program, making them a generous and uplifting brand that I enjoy representing and supporting.

M I N T CONDITION || FEAT. THE M I G H T Y COMPANY

“We’re not shy about our ambitions and we live to inspire others. We like our clothes classic, and our
goals lofty.”

– The Mighty Company

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I was recently introduced to The Mighty Company through the wonderful world of Instagram. With their timeless taste and meticulous tailoring, this independent brand resonated with me instantly. These guys equip their buyers with classic pieces designed specifically for the rebellious, forward-thinking individual ready to shake up the world. They also understand the importance of looking good while doing so. The result? A Friday afternoon dance party on top of a West Hollywood apartment complex captured by Toronto based Photographer, Mike Rousseau. In honor of our boy, Drizzy, we were

“Way, way, way, UP. Turn it all up.”

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|| OUTFITTED ||

Dress Shirt : The Mighty Company

One Piece : Asos

Socks : J.Crew

Oxfords : Sam Edelman

.  .  .

|| BEAUTY ||

Eyeliner: NARS 

Lips: MAC Cosmetics 

COMING OF AGE || 24 ||

You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence,

as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair.”

Douglas MaCarthur

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This year, I truly felt a sense of “coming of age,” which I regard separate from “growing up.” This is because characteristically, I will never lose my jovial youth, it’s just part of who I am. Coming of age for me is an understanding of who you are, what you’ve seen, and where you’re going. I consider myself lucky to have lived an authentic life in this space falling somewhere between kid and adult, for here I have found undeniable purpose, courage, wonder, wisdom, laughter, and beauty.

 In this “coming of age” thing, I’ve learned life’s journey is meant to be shared, and it’s with those who you choose to surround yourself with that shape that experience. This is the exact reason why this years celebration was so special to me. It was a fun weekend filled with pleasant surprises and a few destinations.

DESTINATION 1:

Orange County.

I spent the eve of my birthday in Orange with my best friend and creative partner, Evan Woods. The small antique town was the first place I called home upon arriving in California 6 years ago, and it will forever hold a special place in my heart. However this place wouldn’t be as special to me if it weren’t for the people I think of every time I visit. With each arrival comes a new wave of nostalgia much different from the one before.  I smile upon the speed at which life progressed yet I still feel a desire to regress. I gratefully thank my memory for the moment in which I was able to relive, and carry on my way into the unknown upon a familiar road.

As I arrived at Evan’s place, I was greeted with an iconic E. Woods scare. Popping out from behind the dark abyss of his bathroom, he successfully sent my shrieks echoing throughout his entire house. Already breathless, the master of surprise got me once again as I opened the door to the studio to find a complete set filled with 70 tie-dye balloons, configured into a birthday throne. We played, then got down to business and “worked”, then played some more until a balloon would pop, then we screamed, then laughed some more. Post-shoot, we danced around the studio pretending to be fitness instructors, encouraging our pseudo audience to “drop that Cheetos bag” and move to the Hi-NRG music with us. We giggled until our stomachs hurt. It was not a bad way to ring in the birthday if I must say.

DESTINATION 2:

Hermosa Beach.

The next day, I spent my birthday happily relaxing in Hermosa Beach. I lived simply and enjoyed the down time and peace that comes with life at the beach. A slower pace paves the way for deeper breathes. As for the rest of the chapter, that will have to be left to the imagination. Hey, a smart girl knows when to reveal and when to keep to herself.

I will leave you with this,

I was treated like r o y a l t y for the day.

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THE SIREN’S CALL

THE SIREN’S CALL

(A modern response to an ancient tale)

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Run in search of shelter

The vast waters call upon

As a means to escape the welter,

I often become withdrawn

 . . .

A pattern I reprise

A constant need to roam

Yet free may I swim, in his aquamarine eyes,

A place which binds me home

. . .

Behind them lies an unspoken deepness

The gift of the seas abyss

Where freedom and serenity live in greatness,

For your eyes offer me this

 . . .

Crystal blue reflection

Dazzle and hold me keep

Prisoner to your perfection,

You re-appear in my night sleep

 . . .

The calm melody of your song

Echoes in my mind a voice smooth as wine

Whispers and enchants me to come along,

“We’ll be just fine”

 . . .

I open my eyes in bliss

A cross from dream to reality as we kiss

Living reflections of imagination,

Everlasting impressions of temptation

 . . .

He has begun to reel me in

With a recklessness condemned by heaven

Are we doomed and cursed by sin,

Or blessed with divinity of a holy seven?

. . .

He mirrors my very being

Like the moon to the sea

We’re constantly meeting and fleeing,

Forever entangled in all that could be

. . .

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