“I have become a more confident, positive, and resilient person throughout working with Rewrite Beautiful.” – Natalie, Student, Cal State Long Beach
Good morning BEAUTIFUL! It's a good thing I'm a "Sunrise" kinda girl! Cause there's no better time to put up Rewrite Beautiful Street Art up for the public to see. In between tying art in the tree in front of the Gypsy Den and clarifying with the waiters there that "technically" (proud lawyer friends?) the tree is not on Gypsy Den property therefore they don't have to regulate on my revolutionary self.... I met Jerry.
Jerry's opener was, “Hey I like your art”
I said, “Oh... thank you! What do you think when you see it?”
He said, “I think of strong women.”
I then asked, “Do you think strong equals beautiful?”
And he said, “No, I think sometimes women use their strength to hurt men and that's not beautiful. But, I have this friend she may not be beautiful on the outside, but she is the most beautiful person I have ever met.”
After hearing Jerry's opinions I asked him if it was okay if I videoed him for our blog. He agreed and here it is. I think Jerry has some very insightful and truthful perspectives on the beauty of women. It's always interesting to hear others perspectives of beauty. *Just a little FYI: There is some stuff that Jerry says like“she wasn't physically beautiful” For the record Rewrite Beautiful doesn't believe beauty is in the physical. These are Jerry's opinions and we think he's on to something!
Enjoy the conversation....and be sure to leave your comments and your opinions in the comment section below...now... “What makes a woman BEAUTIFUL?” Without further ado Jerry, from the Santa Ana Artist’s Village.
In all un-humbleness....(oh! That's a great title to a sermon/blog) In all un-humbleness I like to think of myself as a pretty well rounded gal. I think I can take on any situation and work my way to success. However, this past week I have been realizing just how much I am NOT Wonder Woman (in more ways than 12.) I think it hit home when the Rewrite Beautiful volunteers shot this picture of me cat napping on the job Saturday; as we were prepping our project for next weeks Street Art lesson. I was sent straight in to nap on an actual mattress there after.
Thank the LORD that there are people here in suburbia who care about Rewrite Beautiful and are willing to help their sisters out! We couldn't Rewrite Beautiful without all hands on deck. Thank you to the following people who have helped tremendously this past week....
Mitch Gonzalez: Mitch is an amazing artist and teacher who makes me step up my game. I was quite literally bragging to Mitch about my awesome Street Art idea using a full sized wooden girl and boy and having the kids Rewrite Beautiful on the inside of them. He so kindly put the breaks on my swivel chair said, “Easy Picasso..... lets look at this one more time.” We now have something that works a thousand times better. Gracias hermano! To see more of Mitch's artwork visit his website here: www.akaixi144.com
Dave Z: I walked into the wood aisle at Home Depot and I swear all the men in the aisle looked at me like, “Uh oh... Chick on deck!” (I think it was my floral bandana that threw them off.) I told one fellow about trying to cut out a 6 foot girl from a sheet of ply-wood and he took two steps back from me and ran and got Dave Z. Dave Z is a sweetheart! He totally helped me not only find the right wood and hardware, lugged all of my stuff around the store but he also helped design the structure of the art work so that it could be a moveable piece on wheels! He taught me a little wood shop and crafting skills too. I told him “You remind me of Jesus the carpenter!” and he said, “Jesus was Jewish.” And I said, “And I like Matzoh ball soup!” He looked at me as if I was strange...(I'm used to it.)
Roger Balko: I met Roger at an Art Show a couple of months ago. Roger is a talented artist and the designer of Dedo Frames. When I asked Roger if he would be willing to cut and assemble our wooden pieces of Street Art he was amped and excited to help the kiddo's. Thank you Roger! Check out Dedo Frames here: www.dedoframe.com
Keane-O! This is my neighbor Keane- O! As I run around between meetings, sitting in coffee shops brain storming, dropping off wood and praying for strength I get the pitter patter of little hands on my sliding glass door that say " Bubbles!” Keane-O reminds me exactly why we are all doing the things that we do. That it isn't about success, popularity, accolades or even fun....it's about CHANGING our world and the LIVES within it so that everyone (yes, even you) know that you too are BEAUTIFUL and will use your BEAUTIFUL talents to make this world the place it was intended to be.
You're BEAUTIFUL! - Irvina
Hellllllllllllo BEAUTIFUL! Happy Saturday kiddo's! I'm gonna take a step off the soap box today and introduce you to a BEAUTIFUL and BRAVE girl I know named Brooke. Brooke is what I like to call an “undercover Queen.” She is poised, classy, mellow and has an inner strength that she doesn't flash around to intimidate others, but instead quietly uses it to help her friends see their own beauty and strength. It's funny, I'm supposed to be Brooke's mentor, meaning I get excuses to go drink Chai Latte's at Alta with her, walk the beach and pet all the dogs walking by. But, more often than not I feel that Brooke teaches me more than I could have ever taught her. For instance the other day I was walking out of the doctor's office and opened a text from Brooke that said, “ It appears that as fashion models and media images of women have gotten smaller, adolescent girls have become unhappier. Today only 15% of teenage girls feels happy the ways she is. Compared to 29% just 10 years earlier. Booooooooo Society”
I laughed and said, “Sounds like you have something to say Missy! How about you blog for Rewrite Beautiful this week?” and the girl wrote up a blog in like an hour...I couldn't be prouder of my "Brookie Brookersons!" I think it takes a BRAVE person to stand up for what is right and to say what they want the world to look like even when every magazine, TV show and porn-o are saying the opposite. I hope you get a little educated on what she has to say about beauty and what you can do to change society.
You're BEAUTIFUL! - Irvina
By: Brooke Constable
"Every society has a way of torturing its women, whether by binding
their feet or by sticking them into whalebone corsets. What
contemporary American culture has come up with is designer jeans."
—Joel Yager, M.D.
I was studying for my Clinical Child Psychology final and came across
an interesting few sentences in one of my chapters: "It appears that
as fashion models and media images of women have gotten smaller,
adolescent girls have become unhappier.” Today, only 15% of teenage
girls feel happy about the way she looks compared to 29% just 10 years
What has changed??? Did our mothers experience less body
dissatisfaction than the young ladies today? All through history, the
dominant political climate and cultural standards always have shaped
the public’s view of the ideal female body type. However, today’s
culture is unique in that the media (TV, Internet, movies, and print)
has a far more powerful presence than ever before.
There is so much media battling us, we can use our own media and art
to ‘fight back!’ We can ‘Rewrite Beautiful’ with our peers and
influence the culture we live in. BEAUTIFUL is defined by our culture,
and WE make our culture.
Recent work has used the Tripartite Influence Model (Keery, van den
Berg, & Thompson, 2004; Shroff & Thompson, 2006), to propose that
peers, parents, and media are the main sources of influence
surrounding body dissatisfaction and disturbed eating. Also, social
reinforcement theory (Thompson & Stice, 2001), suggests that the
values and standards regarding appearance are determined and
perpetuated by neighboring or proximate, peers who reinforce the thin
ideal promoted by the media. And yes, though correlation does not
equal causation, many studies are showing high correlation with media
exposure and perceptions of the thin ideal. Coincidence? I think
How can we battle this??? Well, I’ve dug up my old research proposals
that looked into body dissatisfaction and social support, and found an
overwhelming number of studies that support the idea that girls with
high levels of social support tend to experience less body
dissatisfaction. So, hang with some buddies!!! Join groups!
Hang with girls who are POSITIVE, CREATIVE, KIND and STRONG!
But beware: surround yourself with women who do not judge their bodies,
are overly competitive, perfectionist, and media obsessed; that can
feed into high body dissatisfaction.
I know we all fall somewhere on the dimension of self-obsession from
time-to-time (hey, it’s the nature of the disease), but when we can
get ‘out of self’ and with others we are less likely to view ourselves
on appearance alone. As women, we are relational creatures and we can
create a good deal of self-esteem from our interactions with others
and our relationships. I guess that idea of ‘feeling a part of’ is
critical to our happiness. Why do you think so many of us need our
daily dose of 12 step meetings?
We can “feel a part of” and create positive media with Rewrite
Beautiful Street Art. Give rise to your own Rewrite Beautiful Street
Art somewhere noticeable in your community, take a picture of it, and
send it to us via e-mail at RewriteBeautiful@gmail.com
Beauty doesn’t stand alone!
Here at Rewrite Beautiful I get the opportunity to meet some pretty amazing and passionate men and women. People who want to see BEAUTIFUL restored to it's true meaning of creativity, kindness and strength. But, in meeting those people I also hear their stories, stories about women experiencing heart failure from their Eating Disorder, but still going to the gym. Stories about men who feel their abs aren't ripped enough to pull a date. Anxiety and depression in teenage girls over their fear of not being “beautiful”so they lock themselves in their rooms all summer. I feel as if I am experiencing the terror of the Haiti Earthquake, but no body else is seeing it but me. I just want to make the pain stop, but the deeper I go into Rewrite Beautiful the more I realize how distorted BEAUTIFUL truly is...especially in the dating world.
So if you're trackin' with me, both of these girls think that they aren't BEAUTIFUL physically or even in their personality; which is kinda scary considering the classic, “Well he/she has a great personality!” I guess we're so warped that you're personality isn't even good enough to validate you as a human being? Call me crazy, (most people do) but I have a vision where we live in a world where girls don't gauge how BEAUTIFUL they are based on someone else's interpretation; they see themselves as BEAUTIFUL based on their creativity, kindness and strength.
The truth is I “get” these girls. I've been there. I know what it feels like to think “I'm too fat and I'm too strong” and the only “logical” answer I ever found to that was “Okay just starve and be quiet.” But, her the catch... I love food and my family will tell you that I was born with a good set of lungs and opinions. So basically I was miserable ACTING “beautiful”. Like the rest of the 99.9% of the girls in the world I would like to get married and according to statistics I most likely will. But, just for the fun of it lets just say there isn't a guy on the face of the earth who wants to take me home to meet his mama. How would you suggest I live the rest of my life?
Exhibit A: Should I go through life questioning myself, “Maybe I'm too fat, maybe I'm too strong, maybe if I change my hair, maybe I should buy that dress, THEN he will like me”
or should I...
Exhibit B: (As in Exhibit BEAUTIFUL) Step outside, look at the world around me and say, “Ya know what I was created for a reason. With this hair, these eyes, this butt, this waist, this brain, this mouth and this heart. Instead of arguing with the sky about how I turned out I am going to choose to call every aspect of me BEAUTIFUL, because I am.”
So how exactly do we get people to Exhibit: BEAUTIFUL? I think it's with hugs. Let me explain... I used to work at an Eating Disorder rehab. For those of you who don't know, girls very deep in their Eating Disorders are incredibly sensitive and at times...cruel. One moment they love you and you are their savior, the next moment they are calling their parents trying to get you fired for not allowing them their cell phone. The bottom line is, they aren't who they were created to be. It was my job as a staff member to remind them of who they are. How I did that was at the beginning and end of every shift I would give them a hug... if they made me a painting for my room they got a hug and if they cussed me out they still got a hug. On the days they cussed me out they would get confused and say, “Why do you want to give me a hug? Don't you hate me yet?” And I would reply, “No.. I don't hate you. Because it's not you who does mean things, it's your Eating Disorder. I know you're in there somewhere. I see glimpses of you and I love you.”
I think that there is someone YOU KNOW that could use a hug. They need you to hug them and tell them, “I know you don't see yourself accurately... But I see you and you're BEAUTIFUL... because you are creative, kind and strong.” The world is BEAUTIFUL and it's painful it's our choice to decide which side we play on. Tell her she's BEAUTIFUL! Go Team!
The sweet thing about Rewrite Beautiful Street Art is that anybody can do it! Yes, we do take the Rewrite Beautiful curriculum into schools for young girls to hear our message about what BEAUTIFUL truly is; but just as well any girl can simply take pictures of her friends and "Rewrite Beautiful" for them. We do encourage you to post your Rewrite Beautiful Street Art somewhere visible in your community, take a picture of it and then send it in to us via email. However, there are some super cute rule breakers out there who send us their Street Art via snail mail with no pics! Ha! No sweat, we love Rule Breakers! You girls and guys are our favs! We're just glad you stepped up and REWROTE BEAUTIFUL!I mean for real.... we're trying to REVOLUTIONIZE the word BEAUTIFUL.... we aren't exactly girls that run along with the pack. We're the messy black sheep with green and purple paint on our fur and we're proud of it!
So the point of this post.... gettin' there... So I get these two BEAUTIFUL pieces of Rewrite Beautiful Street Art in the mail from the BEAUTIFUL Street Artist: Kjerstin in Newport Beach, CA
I take a look at these BEAUTIFUL women, the BEAUTIFUL words and I'm taken back by them. They are BEAUTIFUL....I start to wonder "where am I going to put this Street Art where someone can see it? Coffee shop? Tree? High School? College?" All great places, but just none of them seem right. So I did what I always do when I can't figure things out (and I've tried 4 different options) I prayed....I said "God where do you think this Street Art should go? " Ya know what He said... God is so smart! He said, "Dudette! Irvina it's so obvious! Go to the drug store and paste it in the diet ailse! You know where the diet pills, fat burners, laxatives and girls who need Rewrite Beautiful hang out?" Then I said, "Dude! You're so good!"
And so that's exactlly what I did! Check it out!
Yeah, it's a little rebelious.... someone even asked, "Seriously? Can't you get arrested for that? " I said, "I don't think so... I didn't ruin property or anything. I just simply DROPPED some valuable art ;) And honestly if I was to get arrested and my dad had to come and break me out of jail...they will wish they would have let the cooky artist girl be with her crayons." ... Only my family will get that joke ;) Plain and simply this is where the girls who need to know that BEAUTY is not found in your face, your boobs or your butt... it's found through your creativity, your kindness and your strength.
I hope this post encouraged you guys and gals to Rewrite Beautiful and make some Street Art!
You're BEAUTIFUL! - Irvina
What happens when a mommy named “Art” and a daddy named “Political Activism” have a baby?
They name her, “Artivism!” ( Witty eh? I'm cute and you know it!)
Artivism is the expression of Political Activism through an artistic medium. My friend Jasmine is BEAUTIFUL because she uses Artivism to open young minds to the circumstances around the world. Jasmine and I work together as “People Sculptors” or in laymans terms “Teachers”. Something that I have always thought is BEAUTIFUL about Jasmine is that she cares deeply about getting to know the back story on ALL the people she works with. Whether or not it's the name of a 3 year old's dog or the details of what it's like building an igloo in Alaska. Jasmine treats everyone's story with value. I wonder if maybe it's because she has experienced a rather turbulent life so far herself?
The beauty of this story is that Jasmine has taken her traumatic experience and used it in an artistic way. Through her art she has told the story about the reinforcement of Child Soldiers in Iran, the oppression of Iranian women under the Burqa and the affects of a war zone on a child. Jasmine is BEAUTIFUL because she is BRAVE enough to talk about her experience, CREATIVE enough to give her art relevance and CONFIDENT enough to say, “You may not like what I have to say, but I deserve to be heard.”
I believe we ALL have something BEAUTIFUL to say. But, first we have to believe we are BEAUTIFUL before we can say it. I encourage anyone who reads this to notice the girls around you today/tonight.... look for the BEAUTIFUL attributes in them and say, “Dudette! You're bravery makes you BEAUTIFUL!” “You're CONFIDENCE makes you BEAUTIFUL!” You will be doing her (and the world) a lot of good...trust me.
To see more of Jasmine's Artivism visit Jasmine Khademi Art on Facebook.
Happy Monday BEAUTIFULS! We're "Back to work!" as my friend Milan from Furniture From Home would say; and continuing our blog series on "Question: What is BEAUTIFUL? Answer: Creativity." We have asked the question "If BEAUTIFUL can't be found in the size of your jeans where is it? One of our many answers is in your CREATIVITY" Creativity has many facets and we're exploring them here.
Today is Day 5 and today our BEAUTIFUL Creativity is found in DREAMING. I saw Inception this weekend, it was mind blowing to say the least. It brought up so many questions, thoughts and inspiration. One being about the sub-conscious. Now, I'm a creative person and familiar with bursts of creativity that happen while taking bubble baths and waiting at a red light, but there is something about dreaming that provides more psychedelic visions than any workshop or Allison Wonderland mushroom could provide. I often have dreams about art that is so eclectic, intricate and far-out that I don't even know where to start to create it... so it stays locked in my dreams (and my dream journal) But, there are those people who have BEAUTIFUL artistic dreams and try their best to make them a REALITY. Those people are like my friend Rebecca from Sleepy Dreamer.
Rebecca is BEAUTIFUL because she is not only CREATIVE but she is a DREAMER. Now one might ask, where is the BEAUTY in dreaming? We all do that. Yes, but not all of us pursue our dreams the way Rebecca does. Rebecca hosts a blog called Sleepy Dreamer where she posts creative creations that are as random as her dreams. Wedding dresses, necklaces and photo shoots are some of them. But, what I think is the most BEAUTIFUL thing about Rebecca is her honesty about the frustration from being a dreamer. She is honest that she doesn't know where all of these dreams and creative endeavors are taking her, yet she still tries.
A very common theme for girls with Eating Disorders is, "If I can't win, I won't play." In other words, "If I can't be the best, than why even try." This perfectionism leaves a lot of girls simply in the dark. We celebrate Rebecca's BEAUTY because she takes risks, she doesn't claim to be perfect or to be the best, she simply states that she is a Dreamer, “ She loves to sleep. She lives to dream." Rebecca is what we consider BEAUTIFUL, honest, genuine, creative and a risk taker.
Day 4 of our series "Beautiful is Creativity". Today CREATIVITY is ROCKIN' CHOREOGRAPHY! I think of dancers alot like teachers, totally vital to the growth of the exploration of the world and deserving of a whole lot more cha-ching $$$. I mean dancers bring vibrant messages of peace, equality, pain, struggle, triumph and joy to life by quite literally giving it tangible arms, feet and heart.
Of course those messages would never come to life had a choreographer not scripted and pounded away the hours to get the arm's sharp and the plies right! Choreographers have the BEAUTIFUL job of not only giving a voice to the message behind the dancing, but they give the dancers an opportunity to use their creative BEAUTY in a collaborative and fulfilling ways.
One of my favorite choreographers is the BEAUTIFUL, Shawn Vitale. Shawn and I were cheerleaders together in high school. While she went back and forth with our coach busting out some seriously edgy dance moves, I preferred to hang out in "Gallery Irvina".... AKA, " in my head" sketching artsy and way too elaborate posters for football games.... meaning Shawn ended up with the job of re-teaching me all the dance moves I got in trouble for not paying attention to or memorizing. Low and behold, today I'm an Art Teacher and Shawn is a Professional Dancer and Choreographer. Shawn is actually in Detroit right now filming Harold and Kumar 3. She is a dancer in the movie. When she's not filming movies, Shawn is still helping teenage girls learn some killer moves and see themselves as BEAUTIFUL by discovering how BEAUTIFUL the traits of HARD WORK, PERSERVERANCE and COMMITMENT are.
Here is one of Shawn's BEAUTIFUL and AWESOME pieces of choreography called Freak Show that she taught to a group of her teenage students for a dance competition. I absolutely just LOVE this amazingly rockin' and BEAUTIFUL choreography! *Now I have to tell all you "Parental Units" out there that the word "Sexy" is in this video below (cue GASP!) Yes Sexy, Sexy, Sexy, Sexy! If you have a problem with seeing teenage girls dance to music with the word "Sexy" in it, I totally understand. I'm a Teacher and I'm way protective of my students and want to make sure they are learning things at an age appropriate time where they can process it. However, as a teacher I also know that today we live in a society where 12 year old girls want to be "Sexy". So instead of pointing blame at whose fault that is I ask that you take ownership of that fact and CHANGE how your daughter sees the word "Sexy". Is "Sexy" about wearing provocative clothes and flirting with boys? Or is "Sexy" about having confidence, sticking up for yourself and your friends, finding your own dress code and deciding what makes you BEAUTIFUL without asking for anyone's permission? Pretty deep thoughts for the opening of a dance performance eh? Think about it.. TALK about it and enjoy the show...
Day 3 of Beautiful is CREATIVITY! I'm so glad I get to pick these posts cause my favorite form of Beautiful CREATIVITY is LAUGHTER! Laughter as an art form isn't easy. Almost anyone can make someone laugh at the expense of someone elses feelings...that ain't the kinda creative laughter I'm talking about. The laughter I am referencing to is people who whole heartily just have joy to share, can laugh at themselves and their circumstances and end up making you laugh in the process.
Danielle is one of those people. Here we were having a very deep conversation about marriage. Cause you know that's what 20 Something's and 5 years old's tend to talk about when they hang out. Her response just made me laugh. Danielle is BEAUTIFUL because of her LAUGHTER!