Monday, October 27, 2014

why i love paris (7)

On Tuesday, September 23, 2014, I went to the Ladurée bar.

You know, the bar where I struggled time and time again to kick-off Operation Bar Games for the 8th arrondissement of Paris.

This time, I was not going back there to run any operations.  I was not even going for drinks or for their famed macarons.  No, I was going there simply to draw.

As part of my "Paris par arrondissement" drawing project (in English: "Paris by arrondissement"), in which I visit a bar (or a cafe or a restaurant) in each of Paris' 20 arrondissements to make an urban sketch, I decided that for the 8th, I would choose a place that I found meaningful.

And there was only one possible choice.


P.S. They have the best hot chocolate!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

the simple life made easy

I am currently reading the last chapter of "Keys of Drawing", an instructional book on drawing.  The chapter is titled "Drawing and Imagination", and it has been a delight to read.  In it, the author argues that one way to foster our imagination is by taking two or more distinct ideas and then combining them.  Consider Operation 50 First States for example.  On an elementary level, it is the combination of several things: speaking English, U.S. state capitals, an individual's origin, and pedestrians in Paris.  Each thing on its own is hardly extraordinary.  But when they are put together, one could certainly argue that what results is a product of imagination.

Which brings us to the title of this post: the simple life made easy.

A few years ago, I discovered that life was simple but not necessarily easy.  Indeed, such a discovery was not novel.  In my mind, I must have stumbled on a link between different ideas that I had learned from someone else.

Maybe the "life is simple" part came from the Holstee manifesto below, which resonated strongly with me the first time that I read it.

As for the part that suggests that life can be made easy, perhaps it came from Seneca's famous quote that says "It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, it is because we do not dare that things are difficult", and that was a source of inspiration for a post that I wrote on the subject of difficulty.

Combined, the two parts form a recipe for making what is already simple easy.