-- Song to vibe to while reading: Moses Sumney // "Worth It" --
“Out of all the places that you could be, thank you for being here.” -- Said by every human I’ve met who encourages us to be present. Thank you for those words and to you for being here reading this.
“Life is a huge experiment. If you don’t understand that it becomes very awkward..” :) A friend of mine said this in a wonder-full dinner of topics and conversation the other night. This has been a sentiment my Dad and I share often and that I recently found echoed in this amazing book called You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero (I'm stoked to share more on that in the future). In reading that book and other writings by authors I vibe with, such an Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert, I have been encouraged to write and put my thoughts out into the world.. and take the pressure off of how they come out. Like with singing, it feels good to share and be heard. On that note, I’d now like to experiment a little with being brave…
Are you vibing to Moses Sumney yet? :) Let's do this!
More and more, I find myself in conversations with incredibly beautiful and dynamic people. We get lost (and eventually found) talking about whatever comes to mind. We build knowledge from a collection of experiences and observations, bringing it together into a single line that is so on point in capturing the sentiment. I’ve participated in these conversations with most people who are part of this digital snail mail list, which is why we remain connected.
I find myself being re-inspired by these conversations and bringing them up again years later.
Echo #1 :: I was recently re-inspired by a friend from a conversation we had 5 years ago. At the time, he casually mentioned waking up early (we’re talking 5 am, before the sun and the birds) to take his pup for a hike in a canyon that he lived near. -- Whoot for taking full advantage of the beauty that’s around. -- It means something different to wake up for you. Being re-inspired by this sentiment recently, I’ve been waking up for me, even if it’s just a few moments. So far, it’s helped me be more fully available to others and present in my interactions.
So literally, something you barely remember saying 5 years ago- a story or sentence or the mischievous look you flashed someone- is likely resonating very deeply with someone right now. We leave lasting impacts on each other no matter how brief our interactions. If you ask a physicist, they’ll tell you that everything has a frequency- it’s vibrating. Even the things that look the most still, like granite rock. Every thing has energy to it and we continue to respond to that energy consciously or subconsciously. In sum, you leave echoes wherever you go..
Echo #2 :: A friend once described their approach to conversation as, each person you meet has something of the utmost value to share with you. There are countless conversations where I feel like together we have developed a new way of thinking about things that has blown my mind and worldview.
Here is the exciting part (aka the point) of this mind wandering: I’d like to share those moments with you right here, and continue building those realizations together by hearing your thoughts- what conversations (or totally unintentional eves dropping ;) have you been part of recently that has blown your mind or made you think/ wonder/ wander around your brain?
Something you may be thinking is.. hmm interesting, okay yes cool idea! I definitely have experiences I’d like to share and topics I like to contemplate! BUT I know myself and I don’t ever actually hit "reply" to things like this even though I'm soooo with you in thought!!..
Well, I hear ya! Part of my personal hesitation to do this through email has been feeling awkward about being vulnerable through technology. Similar to you being a human being, I am big on eye contact and reading facial expressions and there’s none of that here to process how you’re doing. There’s no encouraging head nods or “mhmm”s to inspire either of us to keep going. I have no idea how you feel about what’s happening and it’s sometimes hard to feel like it’s a two way street. It’s a suspended jump feeling of vulnerability, just like in cartoons...
I’ve been bringing up this discomfort with friends and family to get a feel for how other people handle it. How do they express such personal sentiments using technology? In those wanderings, I came across some examples of people I know that are doing this oh so beauty-fully and I am excited to be inspired by what they have to share!
Echo #3 :: Humans who wonderfully express the potential for human connection using technology:
David Colón :: Enjoy wandering through the minds of others in his hilarious and thoughtful podcast fittingly called Behind the Mynd: http://www.behindthemynd.com.
Little Strike :: Enjoy her beats of the heart and beautiful life & mind wanderings here: www.littlestrike.com.
Amy Childs :: Slip into "an inside-out view of being human," through conversations on various topics in her podcast WhateverWhateverAmen: www.amychilds.com.
They, along with many others which I will share in the future, have helped me recognize what I want my relationship with technology to look like. Technology is a tool to be used how we want. I love that these humans put their whole self forward (through technology and also in life) and encourage others to do the same. It’s not only their approach to technology but it’s how they approach life. Heart first <3
With that, I’ve realized that this digital letter situation we’re both in right now, would be a lovely place to continuing sharing these amazing sentiments that have developed from in person conversations and BONUS: would be a great place to hear what kinds of things you’ve been contemplating, stoked to realize or echoes that you’ve felt from interactions with people and your adventures in the world! I would love to resonate sentiments that inspire us, to develop ideas and be active participants in wandering and wondering about the world.
In spreading the encouragement to put your whole self in this life hokey-pokey, I’m gonna pop the question: What sentiments --big or small-- have echoed with you recently? I’d love to hear about stories, books, songs, quotes, fleeting moments, mind wanderings and personal growth ideas you have been mulling over and working on. And if you'd like, I'd love to anonymously share them again through this virtual collective pen pal we've got going on to spread the inspiration.
Now to address the elephant in the room, which is that little clickable text below here that looks like this:
… cricket ... cricket …
It’s totally terrifying and I get that completely. Just want to draw our eyes to it, give it a cool, calm and collected “sup?” head nod and say that when you feel inspired and want to experiment with me in being brave, it’ll be right there :)
Here’s to being bold, brave and ruthless in our curiosity to experiment,
I am so excited to announce that in appreciation of the immense support and encouragement I have received to pursue art and music full time (through simply beautiful smiles, liking photos, commenting with encouraging words, asking about donations/ show bookings, spreading the word, donations for CDs, phew- I could go on- and endless positive vibes!), I am stoked to begin this journey by giving back in my first official art GIVEAWAY!
The winner will receive 2 prints/ paintings of their choice from this photo!
Here’s how to enter:
1. Follow me on Instagram @vessnascheff
2. Like the GIVEAWAY post (it's the same photo as above).
3. Tag three of your friends in a comment on the post.
And BAM, you’re in!
One winner will be picked at random on FRIDAY, 8/12 and announced on the post the following morning (8/13). *Note: You must like the post and tag three friends in order to qualify to win. Please make sure your Instagram account is public when you enter, and you must be at least 18 years of age. This giveaway is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by or associated with Instagram. Just moi!
Happy creating! #venturesinwatercolor #createdbyvessnascheff
See you soon!
Hi from the Swiss Alps before leaving for Philly!
We just finished packing and are ready-ish to head back to Philly tomorrow. (Who is ever ready to leave the Swiss Alps? ;) This tour has been such an amazing experience. From not having any gigs pre-booked, we were asked to play 5 shows, made lots of connections with other musicians, got to be part of the recording process of a band called Kliché, collected a crowd performing by the Lake in Zurich, played in a soccer tournament with our roommates and met an amazing array of new friends! It has been such an amazing month!
Squeezing it in to our last couple days, I went on a 10 hour hike through the Alps with the friend we are staying with.. It. Was. GORGEOUS. Here are the pictures.. It's hard to even know what to say- it was breath and word taking. Seeing something so HUUUUUGE and beautiful is what people write books, poetry and music about. I am in love.
With a lot of time to think on the hike, it was an emotional adventure walking through such vastness. I felt so small and so big at the same time. The weight of everyday life evaporates as you climb and any worries seem as far away as the town where we began our hike. As we sat eating our lunch, a chunk of snow shifted on the mountain starting a small avalanche (only because we were far away did it seem small) that thundered down the mountain. We sat holding our breath watching the snow collect speed and pour out as a waterfall into the valley below. To be there in the moment when it shifted was incredible.
It does make one think- these mountains are what we are fighting for in preserving the beauty and biodiversity of nature. These moments of overwhelming appreciation and humility and connectedness to where we come from, who we are and where we are going. We are constantly involved and always part of nature despite how lost and far from it we may feel at times. In a comforting way, we never exist outside of nature. Our actions are not separate from the environment. It is our responsibility to avoid ignorance/ denial and embrace this responsibility with pride and uphold the values that allow us to continue being part of this cycle. The Earth will be fine- humans just may not be around to enjoy it if we don't understand that we are intrinsically connected to nature.
On that note, I've got hiking boots and am excited to adventure upon returning to Philly. Please let me know if you'd like to join :)
To all the beautiful places and people I know and have yet to meet, I am so glad we share these orbits.
On a spontaneous 5 hour hike we took along the Limmat river yesterday, we came across this lovely sheep farm and decided to practice our newest cover for them. It was overwhelmingly endearing when they gathered along the fence where we were playing that we forgot some of the chords. They really enjoyed it! And so did we :)
Hallo friends and family!
We are on day three of our adventure and I am currently writing this from a lovely loft bed that looks out wall length windows over a peaceful river... It. Is. Beautiful.
Our first day of playing music in Switzerland was incredible! We found a bench situated on a plaza and began our set with "Little Bird" by Lisa Hannigan on which Koof does some amazing things with the melodica. In just a few songs, a group gathered to listen, shushing each other for our originals, singing along to well known covers and asking for encores!
Today, day three, we found a tunnel with great acoustics and passing pedestrians, bikers, busses and adorable children who came to give tips and collect CD's.
On top of the amazing experiences performing in the streets, we can't stop saying "this is beautiful," took some of the most incredible bench naps, ate the best chocolate ice cream ever and consumed the most amazing housemate dinners with our friends and lovely hosts.
Prost to adventure!
Hello friends and family!
We are stoked to announce that we are going on tour to Switzerland for the month of June! With friends across the pond, we are planning travel and will be announcing tour dates as they arise. We are looking forward to posting music videos walking down graffiti walled alleyways, capturing concerts for goats up in the Swiss mountains and little sketches and paintings of our surroundings. Can't wait to share the adventure!
We are also excited to share this collection of photos taken by our friend and impromptu photographer Jane Irwin! Thanks for following along! Keep up with us right here AND for behind the scenes moments of our travels, follow along via Instagram or Facebook!
With love and adventure,
Hello friends and family,
Welcome to my BLOG!
I'm happy to be posting from Philly where I recently relocated and am LOVING it. There are so many talented and creative individuals here who are down to earth and down to collaborate. The amount of support and love that I have received for pursuing music and painting whether online or in person has been so heart filling.
THANK YOU to all my friends and family who have provided a space for me to/ stay live, store art things, discussed art and music, asked to participate in shows, encouraged me to play songs or share paintings that I'm working on-- all of those things contribute to having the ability and confidence to purse art and music. Thank you to all the behind the scenes heroines and heroes of 9-5ers and any "early to laters" whose jobs are extremely challenging in different ways and who make the world go round while artists work to bring expression and light the various issues we all face. As one of my most impactful professors said at the end of our final course, "I hope you leave with the courage to act on your convictions."- Duncan Andrade. THANK YOU.
Things that you can expect to hear about/ see on this blog are various travel adventures (some big things are happening in June...!), new music, sketches, paintings, shows, etc. Looking forward to sharing the adventures with you. Please feel free to share and comment on things you feel compelled by!
Happy travels to wherever you wander today!
Let's go :)