The Art of Tim Burton

One of the first artists ever to influence me is the incomparable Tim Burton. He influenced the way that I process images and visual storytelling, so early in my life that I didn’t even realize what was happening, as I was learning. (Most people don’t realize that he was an animator for Disney, before he became a renowned director. He contributed as a storyboard and concept artist to Disney’s The Fox and the Hound and The Black Cauldron – which are two films that I loved, growing up.)

Though I’ve been less thrilled with most of TB’s film-projects, following (the stunning) Big Fish, I still consider myself a big fan.  And, when I heard that some of his closest friends and colleagues were collaborating to celebrate him, by publishing  a book of his (never-before published) artwork, my heart immediately started to pound!

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Hubby surprised me with the DELUXE EDITION, as a Christmas present.  (Not only that, we managed to snag it in time, to get it as a FIRST edition!)  Above, a bookplate that was signed by the man himself.

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Above: A special-edition lithograph, signed by the man himself.

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Above: An illustration drawn by Tim Burton, as a child.

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Above: Concept artwork of Catwoman and the Penguin, for Batman Returns. (I was obsessed with this version of Catwoman, growing up. In 1992, I was Catwoman for Halloween; and I still remember how awesome that costume was!)

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Above: “People in line for Rocky Horror show.”

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My Own Meaningful Decision

JamieBeck_Journal(Photography Credit: Jamie Beck | Ann Street Studio)

Let me start by saying that this essay isn’t what I’d originally intended, when I began writing today.

After waiting five (yes…five) excruciating weeks for my iPhone 5s to arrive, my new baby – Siri – finally appeared yesterday.  I was going to tell you all about how much I love her; and how she’s already starting to make life a little more convenient.  But, that won’t be what I’ll share about, today.  Ultimately, I’d rather talk about something that’s meaningful.  (Does anyone really need another, “OMG, I got my iPhone!” update, anyways?)

Instead, I’d like to talk about a recent decision that I acted upon…  What lead to making it, why it’s meaningful, and the consequences that have followed.

Decisions are, generally, pretty simple things; right?  Each of us makes them, every day.  “What shirt will I wear today?” or “What will I have for breakfast?”…  (Or, even: “Do I WANT breakfast, today?”)  We decide on how to live out our days, with such ease that the choices become unconscious.  That is, until something presents itself that is so striking, you’re forced to pause and really think about how you should act.  How would you handle yourself, if someone accidentally spilled coffee on the shirt you’re wearing?  Or, if you were served breakfast with an insect in your meal, how would you react?  In moments like these, decisions have the potential to go from “ordinary” to “extraordinary”…whether we realize it or not.

For me, my typical nature is to be laid-back about things.  My philosophy is that incidents like “spilled coffee” or a “fly in my omelet” are accidental…not intentionally offensive.  Though it’s not in my spirit to behave assertively in accidental moments of disrespect, recently, I made a decision to take a stand.

What lead to making my decision?  (And – What exactly happened?)

Well, I’ll tell you…  In case you’re new to knowing me, I’m not just a blogger.  I, also, have a background in marketing; and I work for an organization that produces nationally-televised shows on a major TV network in America.  (One thing I haven’t mentioned, is that I’ve also been the Managing Editor of a women’s magazine…and that I’ve interviewed some notable personalities, such as Olivia Newton-John, Josie Bissett, and Denise Austin.)  I disclose these things here-and-now, not to toot my own horn or pat myself on the back; but, rather, to explain that I’m someone who (though I’m still relatively young, at 31 years old) has a degree of journalistic credibility.  In plain terms, I’m not new to writing articles or interviews.  True, I’m not someone who has been published through Conde Nast or Meredith; but, I do know my stuff.

Not long ago, I reached out to an entity and proposed writing an article/interview, for this very blog. (For personal and legal reasons, I will not disclose the identity of this entity.  I will only say it is an entity that is growing in popularity; but, is relatively new.)  Without spelling out more info than necessary, the Entity declined my “pitch”.  But, here’s the thing: the Entity was dismissive, toward my request.  No – the Entity acted dismissively, towards me.

Nobody likes feeling rejected.  (Especially, this little blogger/marketer/editor/suffragette.)

And, so, after taking some time to collect my thoughts…  I made the conscious decision to reach out to the Entity again…  This time, with a purpose to expose how things could have been handled differently.

Why is this meaningful?

Because, it’s been a great lesson in tolerance, professionalism, and tact.  I’m always learning about myself; and, through this experience, I discovered where I’m really willing to draw a line…and “not” be passively-tolerant.  I also learned that it’s really important to strive for “staying classy”, even in situations when you might feel emotional.

In my message to the Entity, I tried to strike a balance between being firm…but, also, being “kind”.  Like the imaginary server bringing me the imaginary fly in my (imaginary) omelet, the Entity wasn’t out to upset me.  Most likely, they were totally clueless that they’d done anything “wrong”.  Therefore, I positioned my message from a place of thoughtfulness, so that we both (myself and the Entity) could gain something from our exchange.

What have been the consequences?

It’s hard to tell, whether my memo had much impact on this entity.  Up to this point, the “E” hasn’t responded.  But, I think…no…I know…that the Entity got my message, loud and clear.  The “E” must have taken some of what I said to heart, because I’ve noticed a difference in the way that they interact with others who aren’t so different from myself.

So, do I have any regrets, in taking my stand?  No.  And, yes.

I’m proud of myself, for getting out of my comfort zone and directly expressing my views.  It wasn’t an easy decision to make, particularly because I’m a gigantic enthusiast of this entity.

On the other hand, I have potentially risked closing the door on any future opportunities, when it comes to working with the Entity down the road.  (Not happy about that.  If anything, it saddens me.)

In the end, I just have to tell myself that I did what I felt was the right thing to do.

I Heart Delray Beach

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One of the first places I ever explored, when I made the move to Florida, was Delray Beach. About a fifteen minute drive from my residence, I first became acquainted with Delray through my college boyfriend. Our relationship didn’t last; but, my love affair with this little city by the sea certainly has.

Easily, it’s one of my utmost favorite hangouts.  It has fantastic restaurants, festivals, and historical value.  (I’m a big History buff, as you’ll realize if you keep following along.  I’m definitely one to “geek out” over things that are vintage and have a story to tell.)

On a personal level, Delray has a very special place in my heart, as it’s where my husband and I spent most of our time when we fell for each other.  (It’s also where we chose to have our wedding.)  Furthermore, outside of my main role working in television production, I do freelance theatrical work at Delray Beach Center for the Arts.  I guess you could say that the place has had quite an impact on me!

Anyways. Delray is also home to some awesome Southern architecture.  When I feel bored of curating home-improvement ideas on Pinterest, I enjoy strolling around and snapping up images of my favorite landmarks.

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Hello Sunshine!

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Greetings from Of Sand & Snow!  This is the first time I’ve ever managed my own blog, though I’m a longtime blog-surfer.  I remember the first blogs that resounded with me – which I consistently still read.  I’d stumbled upon them, during a time when I was planning my wedding and constantly looking for new inspiration.  After I’d exchanged marriage vows and had no more “purpose” for reading said blogs, I’d still find myself returning to the same resources.  I suppose that I did this for the same reason that anyone else follows a blog: to watch how our bloggy-heroes continue to make their homes, wardrobes, or lives just a little more beautiful.  Now, here I am…Joining the ranks of the people who have inspired me.  I do hope that I manage to breathe life into S&S, justly.

So.  Now that I have your attention and that we’re getting acquainted, here are a few things to know about my personality and the content you will continue to find here:

  • I tend to write the same way that I naturally hold a conversation.  (Literally.)  If you’re a personal friend of mine who’s reading this, you can probably hear my voice reciting these words.
  • I’ll always speak (er…write) with sincerity, passion, and good humor.
  • As long as I’m mentioning “passion”, I should tell you what I’m most passionate about and what I really stand for…  My first love has belonged to film and to television, since I was a small child.  It’s helped to shape who I am and my perception.
  • Secondly, I fiercely love exploring the world.  My schedule doesn’t permit much long-distance travel, unfortunately.  To compensate, I explore where I live.  On S&S, I plan to talk about the interesting places I have come across, with special emphasis on locations that are “unique” and “off the radar”.
  • Lastly, I love me some great design!  (All kinds: graphic, interior, the list goes on.)  I’ll often showcase how I use my personal skills to improve the home I share with my hubby.  Oh yeah – it’s our first home!

Until we meet again, tomorrow. I’ll be talking about one of the first places I fell in love with, when I moved to South Florida.