San Francisco

It was a really beautiful day in San Fransisco, Ca for shooting. A friend of mine, Yvonne Quinones asked me to come up for a shoot she had all mapped out, mentally styled, prepped, and planned. This was my first shoot of this nature, so I was naturally a little apprehensive. But I'm honestly so proud with how they turned out. Take those risks, darlings, sometimes the pieces all just come together. 

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Model: Adrienne Villalon, IG adrienne_villalon

Stylist/Director: Yvonne Quinones IG yvonne_quinones

For photography inquiries, email thefreespirited.co@gmail.com 

Morning Thoughts

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Good morning, I'm slowly, very slowly, chewing through Neil DeGrasse Tyson's book, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry and it's a little over my head. We all need that sometimes, right? A challenge... first thing in the morning. I won't lie, this book is supposed to be for a super basic understanding of astrophysics with a bit of history, etymology, and philosophy, but I'm finding myself reading and re-reading each page. I actually heard about it from this interview with Stephen Colbert and was sold. Super sold. I'm just saying, I wish I loved anything as much as Tyson loves the universe. 

"Maybe you're special because you're the same" - NDT

Same, as in sameness of the universe. There's a guru I like, Nithyananda, who said something equally potent and attention-grabbing in one of his lectures and that was,

"You are not qualitatively different from the universe, but quantitatively."

I loved that. You're littler than all of creation but very much aligned to it, and made of the same stuff, and astrophysics confirms.  

Again, good morning.  My mind rattles before yoga. It really does. 

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I'm trying this superfood coffee from Terra Origin, and I'm pretty into it. It tastes coffee-ish, definitely very superfoody, and just sweet enough. I'm a pretty big coffee person, but I could easily incorporate this in place of my afternoon cup, and probably should. But I really have no regrets about my present coffee consumption, like, at all. The superfood list here is pretty impressive with mangosteen, kelp, collards, and chlorella, I do think this makes a superior breakfast companion for prolonged energy.  

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So this is one of those no recipe, recipes. 

Seriously, almond milk + Terra Origin

Heat it: stove, microwave, wood burning oven, whatever. 

Mix

Drink 

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the stars are in your eyes. 

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ugh

Clarifying Skin Scrub + Mask with Aloe Rose and Hibiscus

Not gonna lie, I ended up taking this whole batch in the bathtub with me and making a big mud bath style mess. Worth it. How I actually intended to use it, and did end up using it was, as a face mask and scrub. The hibiscus tea is what makes it a super mild scrub. This mask has two types of toners in it, if you include the aloe as a toner—if you haven't used aloe as toner, you might want to try it. It's getting pretty popular. As seen here: The Body Shop, the ever popular Mario Badescu, and this DIY from Pins and Procrastination 

This mousse-y looking mask is actually made with red clay and aloe to hydrate instead of water, because why not? Plus the enzymes in aloe vera are pretty amazing, meaning it detoxifies while also hydrating. Thayer's Rose Toner, also has aloe vera in it, but it's primarily made of witch hazel which is good for acne and overall redness. Clay is clay, I mean all the clays are detoxifying, and pull out toxins and dirt in the pores, but red clay is known to be even more absorbent. For more sensitive skin, green clay is recommended. My skin is always a little bit pink after a clay mask, but I noticed a bit extra this time. Nothing too too noteworthy, but if your skin is very sensitive maybe opt for the green. Hibiscus tea is high in antioxidant content, can help rejuvenate skin, and is great for circulation, which could account for my overall redness after taking this mask off. One big thing to note is that I typically don't do any clay masks right before going out because it can make skin a little bit sensitive and it's better not put on makeup right after. So, try this mask on a night in.  

Here's what you'll need:

Directions:

  • Add hibiscus tea to witch hazel and let the hibiscus steep for 1-2 minutes. 
  • Mix hibiscus in with clay until fully distributed. 
  • Add in aloe vera juice slowly, until the whole mix becomes fluffy and spreadable. 
  • Apply to clean skin, exfoliating first is a good idea.
  • For a mask: Apply to skin and leave on for 20-25 minutes. 
  • Rinse with warm water and washcloth, tone, and moisturize. 
  • For a scrub: Start with clean skin and take a dime sizes amount and scrub in circular motions to cleanse, exfoliate, and detoxify. 
  • Rinse with warm water and washcloth, tone, and moisturize

Factory Girl

So glad to have visited the NICORA Shoes factory earlier this month, or last. I might've been sitting on these photos for a while now, either way, they're here, and totally industrial and glorious, and vegan. There are few things I love more than a good behind the scenes, and this is no exception. In the meantime, I, my dears, have big plans to go back to my trademark face masks, foot scrubs and the like. But, until then, enjoy all of the gritty shoe-making possibilities, and the hearts and hands that are behind them. 

Meditation Mount Flower Outtakes

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While up in Ojai shooting for NICORA shoes, I obviously couldn't help but catch some flower pictures. Ojai, as many of you may have heard has faced tragedy recently with the Thomas Fire. I haven't visited since, but have heard that it is on the mend, and some don't recognize the lovely home they've grown to love as it now stands. My compassion and gratitude go out to this lovely and spirited place, which I will gladly revisit soon. So glad to have had the opportunity to capture a few shots of Ojai's mystic and peaceful Meditation Mount.