Live Life Moments • Monstera Mondays
I consider myself extremely lucky to do what I do for a living. Not everyone is fortunate to be able to include their creative interests in the way they pay their bills, and I’m never ungrateful for that. That said, even with some of the fun things I get to do on a regular basis (working with cool brands, experimenting with home improvements, creative directing shoots), sometimes undertaking artistic endeavors purely out of my own interest and passion isn’t easy to squeeze into my crazy schedule.
Often, I’m working with other people, which means that projects that allow me to be totally limitless with imagination are a little less frequent. But I’ve learned that it’s super important to make time for my own pursuits: whether it’s a day where I shut off my phone and spend the entire time catching up on my favorite shows (and not leaving the house!) or getting together with other artistic pals for a day of crafting. It’s crazy how much it helps me to recharge! That’s what’s so cool about American Express’ new “Live Life Moments” campaign, which is all about prioritizing meaningful real-life moments. Inspired by the concept, I called up one of my old art buddies, Ashley, and invited her over to my casa for a fun little no-pressure project.
Ashley and I go back about 10 years; we were introduced by a mutual friend when she was curating a gallery exhibition all about Polaroid photography. We connected and have been creative supporters of one another ever since. Since she’s yet to see my new LA home, it was the perfect opportunity to get together and do a little design DIY. Ashley’s also looking for some home décor inspo of her own so she was excited about the opportunity to get together and share ideas — and pastries from my fave nearby bakery, of course!
I knew I wanted to include Monsteras (also known as “Swiss Cheese Plants” if you’re not familiar with the official name). Ashley and I laid out all the stems, which were leftovers from a shoot, and started playing around with options. Turns out, Monstera leaves have a mind of their own, and covering an entire wall was pretty tricky! Eventually we had the idea to use them to create a piece of art, concentrating them in one smaller area. I grabbed an old painting I’d thrifted and painted over and we used green floral tape (and a lot of finagling) to cover the whole canvas.
Monsteras happen to be really resilient so there was nothing to lose: if it didn’t work out or I ended up not liking it in a day, I could just throw them in vase and call it a day! But, after messing around for a few hours, we both really loved the result! The holes in the leaves let the paint colors (blue-green and yellow) pop through, but the overall effect was like a living work of art. What was so fun about the day was just knowing there was no pressure, and being able to just explore the possibilities freely. Through the process we had a lot of laughs about old memories, nibbled on matcha croissants, and danced around to my favorite jukebox. Not having any expectations or agenda besides having fun was so refreshing, and something I’ll definitely be prioritizing more in the future. Now, what to experiment with next?