Thinspiration: “Kortney William & Reggie Revels”

30 Sep

Kortney William & Reggie Revels (13)
I’m such a fan of this digital age. Many people will claim that with the many triumphs, progressions and easiness of communication due to the internet and cellular devices we have become lazy and less communicative. However, I will be beg to differ, not only have the digital age has introduced me to people I would never had the chance to meet ridding my bike around my childhood neighborhood, take trips to places I’ve only see in movies and allowed me to find a career outside of a traditional brick and mortar building.

Take blogging for example, by know you know I am fond of all things thin, stylish and fresh. As much as I love menswear I use to be bummed and bored of not having people to share my knowledge and enthusiasm with but, today that’s not the case. Now I can share new tips, pics and reviews of thinspirations as well as, I can learn about new trends from others that I normally wouldn’t ever had known thanks to the advancements in technology.

Even with my other career… earlier in the month I had about four interviews over Skype and Google Hangout in comfort of my own home. Cut today; I will be in training sessions all week without leaving my bedroom. Who knew that I could get paid for laying around?! Because of the conveniences of WiFi I can get multiple things done without missing a beat. I can run errands around town while working from my phone, hit the gym while I come up with new posts and view menswear runway shows all over the world without catching or paying for a flight.

Though sometimes I do find myself not having human contact for days at a time, I don’t ever have a day off and if the internet is down then so is my bank account! However, I still love it I’ve even meet my boyfriend on Instagram. This morning after my morning jog I began my conference call and while people where chiming in I began to surf my fav thinspiration blogs to burn some wrist calories as I listened in.

This editorial I found on malemodelscene.net of abtastic Kortney William and Reggie Revels in a recent session by photographer Toni Smailagic.

“I followed Kortney around at his apartment and nearby locations – everything from recording music , styling a shoot, playing basketball, etc. Kortney is very influential in his style sense and that was my initial attraction to doing this with him.” – from Toni Smailagic

First, this editorial captured my attention to get me to do more abs this evening. Second, tomorrow will be an ab day as well! Third, this is just how simple my life is right about now. I can get many things done such as set up an interview for a future post, send out emails and reports to my regional manager, shop and of course workout all without being frazzled or pressed for time. I love how these men are actually working (models) but it’s about their daily life. Yet the funny and envious thing about these images is that these guys are styled really well and I’m usually not. The thing I enjoy about Smailagic work is that its so descriptive of the digital age, we get to have a chance to be a fly on the wall into other people lives albeit, Facebook updates, Twitter comments, moment captured on Instagram and of course life stories, opinions and reviews on blogs.

The irony of fashion blogging is that we do it in our underwear, pajamas or sometimes in my sweaty gym clothes.
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The Lipo of Urbanwear.

29 Sep

I love having fashion talk as much as I love having gym talk! Discussing the art, business, politics and different genres of menswear with someone just as excited, opinionated and knowledgeable about the industry is even more thinspiring. Afterwards I get this high and rush of adrenaline to shop, recreate or reorganize my closet even hit the gym to fit the garments I’ve just put in my online shopping cart.

I was on video chat with one of my favorite menswear crooners and the topic of discuss as we both were procrastinating or daily trip to gym was the growing trend of urban-wear in high-end fashion vs the declining trend of once prominent urban houses.

I mean you see it, Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy ss15 collection included wave caps and not to mention collaborating with Nike, to high-fashion red-carpet dressmakers Marchesa sending models down the runway with cornrows even shoe designers like Giuseppe Zanotti producing sneakers inspired by urban shoe enthusiasts. One can even call this suction of life from a flamboyant culture the lipo of a sometimes segregated but many times glorified culture.

Do have I a problem with the re-appropriation of Black culture style of dress into white/mass culture? No. I rather support it, I am excited to see the things I love to wear or have been apart of my culture for years being accepted by others. We all do it, from being inspired to wear Kaftans, Moccasins or wide-brim hats to incorporate other street culture in our aesthetics i.e. skater, motocross and west-coast vibe. Style should be all inclusive, we all take from different religions, cultures, races, regions and time periods to create this subjective hodgepodge we call style and fashion.

As I was discussing with my thin fashion savvy friend, I do have a problem with my culture not capitalizing on our own personal style. Take the time period of 1999-2000 for example, hip-hop, urban and rap was at it’s prime and influenced the fashion industry heavily such as, legendary American designers Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger where they revamp their entire brands for kids and adults who were into the rap hip-hop scene. This big business fashion phenomenon skyrocketed well into the early millennium pop era and suburban areas then, finally African American designers got in on the act. We had brands like Phat Pharm, Sean Jean, Apple Bottom, Karl Kani, Coogie and Marithé et François Girbaud leading the way by creating and dictating what was chic in the fashion community from about 2004-2008 right before designer denim became popular.

However, now people wouldn’t be caught dead wearing any of those designers. Not because the names are old, dated or their quality of production is bad but the innovation and imagination is gone. No one is wearing their clothing three sizes too big, brand’s names plastered all over the pieces nor is fashion that hardcore anymore. But as the last two seasons of fashion weeks from New York, London to Paris and Malin has came and went you can’t help but notice the major mark and influence that these once toast of town fashion houses are playing a huge part in today’s designer’s aesthetics. Just review Valentino, Alexander Wang, Frankie Morello and Pyer Moss collections and you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about.

The reason why hip-hop brands has phased out is because they phased themselves out by not staying current and evolving their collections. I believe such brands as Girbaud, Akademiks and Sean Jean can make a major comeback to the runway if they just pay attention the current state of street fashion and cater to the fashion conscious youth of today. Street-wear is still heavy as it was 8 years ago, except it have became more streamline, structural, androgynous and edgy. Gone are the days of gaudy menswear. If only these urban brands could take the direction high-end fashion houses are taking as they take this new approach to urban-wear.

I guess one brand heard my hunger cries… Rocawear got the memo. As they are throwing their needle back into the sewing game they are making over the whole brand to cater to the same and new audience in the high fashion climate of now.

Rocawear BLAK is described as a fresh chapter for the brand targeting the young, style-conscious, male consumer. What I love about this fresh chapter is that they understands that fashion has changed in the hip-hop community and that it’s more of a pristine look. Still masculine, tough and dark but not so rugged or disheveled in structure and lacking innovations or taste.

Even hip-hop music has changed to rappers wearing and singing about their favorite high-end designers, that’s why It was obvious to get the beyond stylish rap artist Fabolous to be face of the relaunch of the brand. Fabolous is known for his cool urban sartorial style. He is young enough to captivate new fashionable males and been around long enough to usher older fashion males into this new age of street-wear.

Right in time for winter the brand will be pushing their new collection around the holiday season and hopefully the tremendous growth and maturity of the collection will be able to compete the likes of Alexander Wang and Neil Barrett. Even though, the brand have some taste issues to work out I’m happy the motivation is there.

Let me read your weigh-in on the current state of urban-wear and new direction of Rocawear?

“Junk Food Journals:” Entry 10

24 Sep

Woah, I can’t believe this is entry number 10 for the “Junk Food Journals.” When I started this series it was to ask fit guys workout questions that I was afraid to ask in gym because I was too busy salivating over their ripe muscles. Now thanks to the ability to hide behind the web I can hid my inner creep while speaking to my thinpsirations.

In this entry I have come to the happy and mildly relief realization that “it,” whatever it is just gets better with age. In two years I’ll be 30 and at 28 I’m in better shape than I was at 18 therefore, if I keep this up like the men featured I can be well persevered grade A beef like them! Its never too late to start your fitness journey or lead a healthy life style. I mean, just look at these men; I know guys younger than them that could pass as these crisp bodied men older siblings.

Like with anything worth having in life you must take precious care of it. So if you are what you eat then these guys eat a bowl of amazing each day. Check them out, follow them on Instagram, gawk at their physiques, screenshot their tips and go to the gym TODAY!

Thanks fellas for participating!

Shane Huggins

Shane Huggins

Shane Huggins

My name is Shane Huggins (IG:@chicohuggins) but everyone knows me as Chico and I was born in Barbados. I did however, grow up in St. Vincent. In a nutshell, I went to University in the US on a tennis scholarship and moved to London in my final semester to complete my internship at a small law firm. I stayed there for just under a year during which I became a signed model with W Athletic and Fit4Fashion.

Workout Philosophy: “No Pain; No Gain.”

Breakfast: Fiber based cereal, fruit and green tea.

Lunch: Pasta salad, stir fry vegetables and fish with water.

Dinner: Fish, greens and water.

Cheat Day: I usually don’t have one but if I do it may be popcorn or cheesecake on my birthday :)

Diet Trick: Honestly, I just try to eat everything in moderation but keeping into consideration I’m an athlete requiring loads of energy.

Problem Area: Legs. Just hope to get them a bit bigger and more toned.

Key To Discipline: Part of my happiness comes from feeling good and I want to feel and look my best despite my age.

Workout Routine: Early mornings consist of high intensity explosive workout such as, Insanity, Focus T25, TapOut XT, etc. Afternoons are often tennis, cardio, and weight lifting in the gym. These will be 5 to 6 days per week.

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My name is Seneca Sean (IG: @applejuce) I’m 37, a professional male living in NYC originally from South Florida. I started working out really just to look better naked. Really that’s it. The health benefits are a nice bonus though :-)

Breakfast: I don’t stick to a specific breakfast. I eat whatever comes to mind. Could be a yogurt and trail mix bar. Could be a couple of boiled eggs and a bagel with cream cheese. Could be a McDonald’s Sausage Biscuit with Egg (shhh).

Lunch: Anything but generally nothing unhealthy. Today I’m having a veggie pasta salad (pasta made from veggies) with sliced chicken breast, cucumber, tomato, black olives and Italian dressing. I made it myself.

Dinner: Same rule as lunch. I hardly ever eat anything fried. Mostly baked chicken or fish dishes. Also seafood.

Cheat Day: Since I don’t believe in diets per se, I don’t believe in cheat days. I believe that almost anything is OK in moderation. A general lifestyle of eating healthy is better than any crash diet.

Problem Area: I have a weakness for baked goods so I allow myself a treat almost daily. I don’t deny myself. I just keep it in check.

Key To Discipline: Moderation!

Workout Routine: I try to make it to the gym 4-5 days a week. I usually do combination workouts. I don’t like isolated
workouts (i.e. leg day, arm day, etc.)
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I’m Reggie Mitchell (IG:@mistamitchell) 35 year old male, originally from Tampa, Florida but currently living in Washington, DC area. Taking every day to continue learning how to better myself both mentally and physically.

Workout Philosophy: Be the best I can be. Learn my own body and do what works best for me. I try to keep in mind that we are all different.

Breakfast: Low Calorie protein shake, oatmeal and fruit

Lunch: Usually baked chicken or fish with green vegetables and/or sweet potato

Dinner: Usually the same as lunch but in a smaller portion.

Cheat Day: I typically like to have my cheat day on Wednesday’s, after a good workout. I have a weakness for Chinese. So I figure the best time to eat is while my adrenaline is still up and burning calories.

Diet Trick: No actual tricks. If anyone knows of any, please let me know ASAP J. I loves to eat, so to balance things out I tend to stay away from sodas and juices and drink water all day long. I figure cutting back on the extra sugar from the other liquids can help keep my weight intact. I keep a 3-Liter bottle of water at my desk to remind me to drink and it helps me monitor my daily intake as well. I also try to keep healthy snacks with me at work such as fruit with high fiber or water content. Having the fruit available keeps me away from the vending machine and also helps me not over eat during lunch and detours me from stopping at quick food locations prior to arriving home for the evening.

Problem Area: Love handle/lower back area. I’ve always been a thicker guy so I’ve learned to embrace them because it’s going to be there. Besides, thus far, I haven’t received any complaints from those I date. They are actually the ones who made me feel more comfortable in my skin.

Key to Discipline: Don’t make excuses. Sometimes the best workouts happen when you rather not be in the gym. Also, as silly as it sounds, selfies help. Its an easy way to keep track of what you are looking like. As our own worst critic, we will notice any deviation from what we have worked so hard to achieve.

Workout Routine: I try to keep a variation ranging from heavy/low rep to light/high rep. I also like to incorporate HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) to assist with my cardio since I’m not fond of running for long periods of time. Also, try to incorporate 10 minutes of StairMaster at the beginning of my workout and three 15 second sprints on the treadmill (at incline of 15) at a speed that will push me and get my heart rate up.

A Good Tan Makes Everyone Look Thinner.

23 Sep

Fall Coloring!
Autumnal Equinox 2014 happens to be today marking the start of my favorite and many fashion enthusiasts alike season, fall. Naturally, during my afternoon jog I detoured to check out the Solar Calendar Sculptures by Steve Murillo, 2003 that tracks the sun’s location by aligning the stones at sunset, sunrise, and at local noon on the first day of each of the four seasons.

As I was waiting what seemed like forever for the sun to move over the rocks I was inspecting my skin and there I was watching J-Lo’s “Booty” video on my phone like, CRAP my tan! I worked pretty hard on my tan this past summer with frequent steams and daily jogs in the over bearing sun. I must say my tan is pretty awesome, so awesome that I don’t want to lose it as the daylight grows shorter and the low temperatures keep me inside more. I’m sure many of you have are having the same dilemma therefore, I’m willing to share how I maintain my evenly baked tone all year. Having a glowing even skin tone makes your look younger, rested and thinner as the light bounce of your glimmering skin in all the right angles.

Eats: SWEET POTATOES keeps your skin silky and smooth because they are rich in beta-carotene and, when ingested, converted into vitamin A, a prime factor in keeping skin touchable soft. Don’t forget fruits such as, WATERMELON, CANTALOUPE, MANGOES AND KIWI are heavy in carotenoids, which help protect your skin from sunburn. Like kiwi, oranges, and grapefruit’s rich Vitamin C properties stimulates collagen synthesis resulting noticeably less dryness and fewer wrinkles. Oh, and deeply colored berries like, blueberries and cherries are loaded with antioxidants, which help your body fight off blemishes. However, don’t let fruit be your only protection though. Sometimes your sweet tooth may be bad for your waist but great for your skin, DARK CHOCOLATE in small pieces will provide high levels of cocoa flavanols, which have been associated with softer, more hydrated skin. Notice I said small, fat-so! On the flipside YOGURT makes your skin glow being a good source of protein and help stimulate fat metabolism and whittle your waistline. This will make up for the chocolate you couldn’t control, yourself on. ALMONDS and FLAXSEEDS contain anti-inflammatory and immunity-enhancing nutrients, including vitamin E, that help reduce skin flare-ups. While brown rice with ceramides in the list of ingredients helps your skin maintains its hydration.

Stamina: Exercise or being active in general is beneficial for the body, skin and self-esteem, but circulation-boosting exercises will give your skin a brilliant glow. To get good skin color go for 30 min walk or morning jog. In the evening, a 10 to 20 minute cardio routine; YOGA, SEX, JUMP ROPE or SPIN CLASS will stimulate skin capillaries. Capillaries in the skin carry blood to the skin’s surface, making it look balanced and radiant.

Stock: I’ve done single reviews on all these products in the “Purge” section and ST. IVES APRICOT SCRUB, AMBI FADE CRÈME, NEUTROGENA VISIBLY EVEN MOISTURIZER, NEUTROGENA 2-IN-1 TONER and GARNIER OVERNIGHT SPOT PEEL are all amazing items to keep or start an even skin tone. You have to scrub away dead skin cells to fight off blemishes and blotchiness as well as, moisturize, moisturize, moisturize to keep the skin hydrated. Ditch the shower gel for oil or a moisturizing bar because gels dry out your skin. A fake tan is always the best once you’ve got a tan! Keep it by using products that contains a hint of gradual tanner– St Tropez Tan not only contains the tanning ingredient AHA but also natural oils that will help intensively moisturize. Use the sunless tanner in the morning before you get dressed so it won’t stain your clothing and as the day progress is will gradually get deeper. Lotions with a bit of shimmer never hurt anyone, if you don’t tell them they won’t know.

Tones: if you have COPPER or a DARK SKIN tone go with chocolate brown, gold, red, small amounts of orange, even yellow can be pulled off by your warm lot. Don’t be afraid to experiment with those summer and emerald green as they will compliment you fantastically. If you have a lighter or fairer complexion best colors to wear are; black, white, ice blue, ice green, ice pink, purple, lilac and silver. Avoid bright red, gold, bright yellow, fluorescent colors apart from purple. Browns, pea green and orange will make you look sickly. Don’t be afraid to play with your hair color as well, however make sure you go to a professional colorist that can match the perfect color to your skin. Please don’t walk around with terrible hued hair this season.

Last but not least… drink your water! Stay hydrated! WATER is responsible for cleansing skin from the inside out; drink at least 64 ounces of water a day. Avoid sodas and alcohol which can affect skin negatively because sugar and chemicals in soda and sugary drinks causes’ acne and oil buildup, while drinking alcohol steals moisture from your skin.

Does over-thinking burn calories?

21 Sep

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The last swim! I was in church this morning totally out of it. Feeling uninspired, disconnected and creatively drained. Church is usually my place of refuge and solace where I am able to just get away from the white noise of the previous week to decompress and prepare for the next week’s adventures.

I believe the worst thing that can happen to a person’s creativity is to not find the time to just do nothing! We are all so busy implementing and executing all that we can to achieve our goals but not taking the time to relish in our accomplishment or simply reorganize our thoughts and restructuring our plan for world domination.

After snapping out of my daze in church I came home and headed straight for the pool. Luckily for Kansans it’s still 90 degrees here and my apartment complex hasn’t closed the pool for the season. I think this is what I needed to get in a somewhat clear head space. I love the water! No mater if I’m in the shower, caught in a summer rain or just out for a swim, when I’m submersed in water I feel free.

Even when I do my daily meditation I play my mix of ocean and rain sounds to put my constantly roaming brain at ease. That’s why I love these images! While I was enjoying myself I thought, why not capture this moment. As well as, I haven’t taken any pool pics all summer.

Moral of the story: Find a place that is your own and just do nothing! It’s perfectly fine to rest as long as you get back up ready to go harder than where you left off.

If only over-thinking burned calories, I’d be at my goal weight right now.

Photographed by: Theodolph Mason
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Floral Jersey: PacSun On The Bays $22.95
Training Pants: Dick’s Sporting Goods Adidas $21.99
Swim Bikini: Hugo Boss $17.99
Sandals: Nike $20
Accessories: (bracelet Nike+ Fuelband and anklet Kenneth Cole New York)

Taste Coach: Antwaun Wright

16 Sep

Art and taste should be synonyms! Both are subjective, both can be classist and lets face it, both are dictated by the taunt and creative. Art is used to describe anything creative from music, dance, writing to architecture and fashion. But what is it when art is turn from a noun to a verb?

Over time art; drawings, paintings or conceptual art has been explicit and descriptive of what the world is going through visually. Many artists are inspired to captured the times of the moment, some are inspired to mock current political & social climate while the rest simply are out to create beauty and transporting images.

After you scroll past the #ootd, endless car selfies and nature/buildingg posts on Instagram or Pinterest you can see a new wave of art culture of cool stylish kids taking a liking to the museum. Even if it’s for a fun photo-op artists are being celebrated!

This installment of “Taste Coach” was thinpsired by charming and provocative new artist Antwaun Wright. I became a glutton for his creations one night as I was curbing my late night cravings by ogling shredded bodied guys. I double tapped on one of his paintings and was instantly fascinated by his taste level and take to painting.

To call his work sensational alone is not enough. Wright’s paintings are an array of vivid multicolored stimulating jocose overall rather boss works. Each creation contains everything of today’s age: sex, street, humor and eccentricity. Check out the mind behind the hand in our interview then stop by his website: Antzinyopants.com for an extended view of his collection of masterpieces.

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Connecticut native, born, raised and still stuck here. Oldest of five, I come from a family full of creativity. Apparently it was swimming throughout my blood lol. Art is a way to express myself, my taste and my sexuality. It was my standout feature about myself. I feel like it sets me apart from others. I didn’t realize that I should make it a career until recently.

What was your first work of art?

AW- Wow, My first work of art I believe was a drawing of dinosaurs, that was a project I had to do in pre-school. It went on to being featured in the Hartford Courant (CT newspaper). Not sure how that happened. Didn’t think I had the skills then.

What got you into painting?

AW- Painting didn’t come until my senior year in high school, I was in AP art. My art teacher challenged me to take a risk with my art and painting was it.

What would you say your style of art is all about?

AW- It’s all about sexuality, freedom, nudity and today’s generation.
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Favorite aspect of drawing or painting?

AW- That’s a good question. Never thought about that. I love the freedom aspect. Could literally create whatever comes to mind and make a story/theme out of it without feeling judge because it’s art.

How do you get out of a creative rut?

AW- That’s the ultimate struggle, it usually takes me awhile to get out of it cause I like to think too far out of the box with my work. I usually just take a break, visit museums, get others advice on my current work or just keep going until something I really like sticks.

What factors most influences your painting?

AW- As you can see bananas. It’s so many stories and eyebrow raises behind that. It’s like take a Keyshia cole song and turning into a Beyoncé song lol.
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Where do you find inspiration?

AW- I find my inspiration from some of my fave artist, such as Keith haring, KAWS and Andy Warhol and where I’m currently at in life

Art periods you go back to the most for reference?

AW- Most likely the 80’s. Not into ancient art too much. Although I appreciate all art.

Who are some artists or designers that have inspired you the most?

AW- As for artist, that would be Keith Haring, KAWS, Andy Warhol and sometimes new artist I discover. As for designers it would be Jeremy Scott. I love how he mocks pop culture in a playful fun way.

Three words to describe your personal style.

AW- Bold. Puzzling. Sexual.

Do you prefer drawing over painting?

AW- I prefer both actually cause most of my paintings start off as drawings. That’s how I figure out how to piece everything together and bring it to life.
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What criteria go into creating an image or bringing a concept to life?

AW- A lot of thought process. It has to makes sense just from looking at it and also the title has to fit it as well, I feel like a title could tell so much before you even look at the art.

What does “taste” mean to you?

AW- Taste to me is having your own personal style, an eye for the right things in life. It has to be interesting with a pop to it, also it should be able to appeal to others.

Most savored work of art you’ve created?

AW- My most recent piece, a tribute to Keith Haring, along with some of my upcoming work.

Most distasteful work of art you’ve created?

AW- That’s funny cause it’s actually a piece that’s on my IG right now, it’s called “Chic Mafia”. I hate it so much, it’s actually sitting behind my dresser. I don’t wanna see it or be reminded of it. Didn’t turn out the way I had imagined.(Instagram:Anztinyopants)

How do you get in your zone to paint?

AW- It starts with some researching, trying to see what’s popular in Society and then trying to piece that together with my own ideas.

Is there a creating mood you set before creating; if so describe it?

AW- AC on full blast, blankets all over the floor to not ruin the floors with the paint. A good drink, put on some Sade, Gaga or Drake and just go to work. Usually half naked, need to feel free with the room door locked for no disturbance. Don’t like my work to be seen until complete.

Which environment do you like to paint/draw in, home or studio?

AW- It depends, although I prefer home cause I could really be comfortable, studio I could make a mess without having to clean up.
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Describe your aesthetic.

AW- You be on it with these questions, another question that takes a min to think about…. I can be insecure about my art, if it’s not great to my standards I won’t show it, you could think it’s great but I could hate it, so beauty and appearance plays a big role in this. So “perfect” would describe this.

Does pop culture play an important role in your creative process?

AW- Yes, Yes, Yes! I feel like it’s what helps my art feel relatable. I like to make things people can feel and relate to in a dope way.

Does your personal style of dress influence your art?

AW- Most of my clothes are black, so it’s a drastic difference from my art. My art is very colorful, I don’t own any colorful clothes. Eventually my art will start looking like my clothes… Maybe.

Any faux pas you’ve notices from other novice painters?

AW- Honestly, not that I’m aware of. I try to get lost in my own work, to notice anything else it can be a distraction to something possibly great, that’s how I look at it.

Any tips to anyone that is good at paint but haven’t the clue where to start?

AW- Pick a theme, think of a direction you wanna go in, stick with it, stay consistent and think of how you want people to view your work once it’s done.

Where do you wish to take (elevate) your work?

AW- I honestly want to get my art more out there, get into some museums for upcoming artist, get more exposure throughout social medial, venture into other art related projects. Basically don’t stop until I die a well known artist along side the greats. Just constantly push myself to not take breaks

Any upcoming shows?

AW- Not like I wish but I have some shows planned, I wanna do a full art show for myself. Probably for the new year. That would be a cool way to celebrate my birthday. Along with showcasing other artist artwork, ain’t nothing wrong with putting others on. It’s room for us all but I do have lots of cool projects in the works. Website, merchandise and of course more art. Stay on them toes lol.(Twitter: Antzinyopants
Facebook.com/Antzinyopants)

Gluten Free ≠ Fat Free

16 Sep

Gluten-Free-Family

Perception is everything! Just because you see something one way based on your feelings at the course of events that transpired doesn’t mean that someone should feel the same, shouldn’t see it differently or have a complete different outlook or response to the displayed events.

Take this “gluten-free” craze for example; gluten or Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease attacking the small intestine due to the presence of gluten, for which the disease affects up to 1% of Americans. However, with all the propaganda you see from food makers, marketers and retailers the only treatment for this disease has been perceived as a weight-lost diet. Foregoing the fact that the reason why many with the allergy have lost weight is because Celiac disease has the reserve effect on your body depending your reaction to gluten. If you gain weight due to the allergy well, when you stop consuming gluten of course you are going to lose weight now that your body can better process food– vise versa. But people become angry and disappointed when they gain weight on the diet because they don’t know that the same amount of calories, sodium and sugar (sometimes more) is still in those “gluten-free” products still there blowing them up as if they are the yeast containing the wheat, barley and rye they claim to be the cause of ill fitting denim.

All this to say just because you see something working or not working for someone don’t mean follow it, it should inspired you to do your research and use another view point to get to the root of your weight gaining problem.

The dilemma with perception may not only cause disruption in your diet but your family as well. I’ll start with; all families are crapped up. No child agrees with how their parent raised them, all siblings have disagreements and everyone has brought home a mate that the rest of the family absolutely hated. Should I even go into detail about the stupid choices and mistakes we make that cause a months of not speaking to one another?

Over the past week I have been lost in a hour long conversations with family members (my two aunts, grandmother and cousin) I rarely talk to not because we are mad at one another but more so I always had a perception of them being negative people. Case in point–my dad’s immediate family!

I’m the one rare family member that seemingly gets along with everyone, I believe that being so far removed from them geographically along with personal growth I have been able to develop the ability to see, hear, and become aware of differences and ailments of my family with a diplomatic yet devil’s advocate reassuring point of view.

I noticed that so many family members don’t speak, socialize or support one another because they feel they may have been done wronged, never received an apology or their antagonist never admitted to their wrong doing. Instead of talking about it howbeit, not coming to a common ground or each family member choosing to go their separate ways, they let mal feeling fester turning into more anger and hurt. This is due to no matter who is wrong and who is right in the situation no one is considering the others perceptive all they see is how this effect themselves which is what they react on.

What I’ve learned is that nothing gets solved with silence and for someone to have the ability to hurt you, at one point they loved you. Therefore, the relationship deserved to be revisited, heard and explained from the view point of both parties involved.

All it takes is listening! Even if it’s not something you want to hear, in turn you will hear things you never consider or knew was going on. What I do with opposing situations like dealing with subjective perception is just talk & listen, it’s that simple. About a year ago I had a sit down with my mom, dad and younger brother about the dysfunction in our family and how it was affecting the continuity of our family. We meet at a neutral location; each had an uninterrupted speech of our entire problems with one another. The trick was keeping others quite as we were cock and load to interject with our own perception of events if it didn’t add up with the talker’s. We just made notes on paper that we all were able to address on the next round of discussions. In the middle of the tears, yelling and awkward silences we (the parent and kids) realized and became aware hurts and mislead assumptions that we would have never consider was the reason or result of our actions.

Did people fail to admit to their part in some of the riffs? Yes. Did things get completely resolved? No. Did it bring us closer and able to move on without bringing up past events? Yes.

Overall, it worked for my immediately family. We still fuss and gripe but its over new stuff as well as we have a better understanding of where someone is coming from and how to handle disagreements.

We all know that with family the fight is never about the fight that is happenings at the moment. It’s all about being heard. You don’t have to agree with someone to solve a problem or enjoy one another’s company but you have to be willing to be diplomatic and work things out so that you won’t go on missing out on great happenings in one another’s lives.

Listening is gold when trying to decipher through perception. In turn reaching your goal became a lot easier. You learn not only about the problem, the other person but yourself as well. Well all can take some time to do some research to keep from being a bitter fat ass.

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