Category: Colors - AM Musings
 
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The truth is not always beautiful, nor beautiful words the truth. Lao Tzu
Chris in on a painting retreat.  Here is her arsenal.



 
 
Every December the Civic Center is lit up in festive lights of red and green.  This time I caught City Hall bathed entirely in red lights. 
 
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Magnolia Petal
Hard to avoid thoughts of the 10th anniversary of 9/11.    Life is a gift.  How shall I spend this precious day?    
 
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Leaf on the ground at the San Francisco Botanical Garden in Golden Gate Park.  Gorgeous color! 
 
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Bar Jules 609 Hayes Street
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Roasted Mussels with Bread Crumbs
Bar Jules is on the edge of an interesting couple of blocks at 609 Hayes Street in Hayes Valley.  Simple in design and presentation, it's a nice spot for lunch and a stroll afterwards for window browsing.  

What caught my eye was the Bar Jules sign in mixed colors and different typefaces and sizes.  Somehow that simple statement explains the sensibilities of the owner of the restaurant.

 
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Chris knits
Although the heat of summer is still baking most of the country, San Francisco is an exception.  In San Francisco, you can wear a sweater almost any day of the year.  Still, winter is coming and like all of nature, we start preparing for cold weather.  Chris bought some yarn at Atelier Yarns on Divisidero Street and has started to knit a scarf of rich harmonizing colors.  See above.  Some lucky person will be looking very dapper this December.
 
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Folsom Street Padlock
 
 Nice colors and textures.
 
 
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Titania Light Fixture by Luce Plan
At $3,000 the lightfixture I picked will blow our budget so I'm looking for something else.  When we remodeled our downstairs bathroom, Chris picked this light fixture called Titania from LucePlan which is both elegant and fun.

By adjusting the fins on the fixture you can varying the colors of light that it reflects off the fins of the fixture.  Sometimes by taking a photo you see something you didn't notice before.  Notice the lavender reflection of light at the top of the photo where the light shines on a lower ceiling.  It was there but I didn't see it until I looked at the photo. I was taken with the colors and composition of structured elements. The white umbilical chord attaches this ship to its cosmic mother -- tethered yet ready to fly free.   Maybe a twin of this fixture could fly in the bath upstairs living in a parallel universe.

 
 
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I was in SOMA walking to lunch on 4th Street towards Brannan when I spotted these yellow numbers set against a grey wall.  It is the address of Zuppa Restaurant, an interesting place I haven't tried yet.  The yellow and grey provide a nice high contrast without being too jarring.

The font style reminded me of Corbusier Stencil Fonts.  Chris has a set of metal stencil fonts that she used on (hand) drawings.  They pay homage to one of the great architects of the 20th Century and give  drawings a stylish look.  She would lay the stencils on top of the drawing and using a soft lead pencil, form a letter allowing the pencil stroke to remain visible as part of the gestalt.  

Architects pay attention to the environment and try to do everything with a sense of visual purpose.  By practicing this at all times, it becomes part of your approach to life.  Le Corbusier's name was actually Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, but like stars today, came to be known by a single name.  He was an architect, artist, and furniture designer whose iconic Corbusier Chair can be seen in modern interiors everywhere.  Learn and be inspired by a Master.

I found this website that gives a history of the Corbusier stencil font as well as this link to the Corbusier Foundation.

 

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White Çhalk on Red Wall



















I came across this section of red wall on Folsom Street anonymously "decorated"  with white chalk.  It's structured yet lively and spontaneous.  Funny how chalk continues to be used even though other drawing materials are more convenient and readily available.   

Stylish restaurants sometimes use chalk on blackboards to show the changing menu and perhaps to evoke simpler times and establish a happy mood. Most people have used chalk at some time in their lives -- probably as a child and for most those were happy times.   You can't use chalk without being aware of its sensual and tactile qualities, the way it engages the surface and reveals textures, the sound of chalk grinding on the surface, the way it breaks if you press too hard, and  the way it leaves powder on your hands so you know you have drawn.   

I try to think about architecture and how the design of things and  materials can evoke feeling within ourselves.  My first courses in architecture at UC Berkeley explored just these concepts and although it didn't seem "serious" at the time, those exercises still inform my work at Mock/Wallace.