Hey there, it’s time for some internet round-ups. I threw my lasso out on the world wide web and found some glittery things for you to fawn over, some hilarious things for you to laugh till you cry at, and some inspiring things for you to shut your laptop and go live because of. Enjoy!


Glitter Brows

100 ways to spend a Saturday

A free podcast from some very lovely ladies on fashion + beauty

How to not die while going after your dreams


Bee + Puppycat
How long would it take you to binge watch your favorite animated series?

Questions non-bloggers ask bloggers

22 free/cheap things to do when pay day is far away


Candy Carousel

Want to be a part of a group that spreads magic with their missions?

Holy explosion in Russia, Batman!

13 exceptional sculptures


Bricolage – Keri Smith
Gala Darling explores why she writes + her process

7 ways to treat depression

Unconventional body affirmations


Silk installations

Hilarious tweet to defer theft

100-year-old time capsule found in Baltimore

28 things sure to make you laugh


Improv Everywhere: Pirates
Bad ass Little Mermaid wedding

Making Mail – a documentary

Bubble pop calendar

What have you seen on the internet in the past month that’s worth mentioning? Share it in the comments!


Did you know I have a ton of new products in my shop? You can get a jump on your shopping for some cheerful stocking stuffers from Uncustomary Art. If there’s something you see and want in a different quantity, are interested in a bulk order, or have any questions please e-mail me. I’m happy to help.

sparkle pills

“document it, babe!” neon pencils

“perfectly adequate performance” award ribbons

“bitches love mail” letter opener

“you always sparkle” pin

lots of postcards

guerrilla art kits

trinkets

“please just party” temporary tattoos


You may have noticed I didn’t give my usual monthly tour of street art this month. The reason for that is our tour is going to be in Indianapolis this time instead. The lovely Dawn, who I was first introduced to through the lovely world of snail mail, has done an absolutely incredible job of not only photographing the public art that beautifies her city, but thoroughly documenting it for your education and enjoyment.

Dawn Olsen is a native Iowan living in downtown Indianapolis. She works as an editorial assistant, freelance writer, and defender of the Oxford comma. She’s addicted to books, snail mail, road trips, and Instagram. She shares creative non-fiction on her blog, Candidly Clyde.

Candidly Clyde Guest Post on Uncustomary Art

Five Favorite Pieces of Public Art in Indianapolis

There has always been art in Indianapolis, but, in recent years, various institutions have worked to make the city even more colorful. Art has spilled from galleries and museums and into the streets, parks, and cultural districts of Indy. Public art is found on the sides of historic buildings, on the walls of underpasses, and on the most unexpected corners. There are sculptures, murals, benches, beautified bus stops, and interactive pieces that invite passerby to “pause and find joy in a moment of comic relief.” With so much creativity on every block, it’s easy to get swept into the color and the meaning of each installation. Here are five of my favorite public art pieces in Indianapolis.

Candidly Clyde Guest Post on Uncustomary Art

You Are Beautiful was installed in historic Fountain Square in 2007. The installation was a collaboration between the Department of Public Words (DPW), an Indianapolis-based organization, and You Are Beautiful, a movement that encourages positive words and powerful messages. Unfortunately, the plywood letters were badly damaged after last year’s cruel winter, and the installation was removed due to safety concerns. However, DPW plans to reinstall You Are Beautiful using more permanent materials. As a way to raise funds for the project, DPW is selling holiday cards featuring a photo taken last winter. I truly hope DPW collects enough donations; You Are Beautiful is an iconic piece of art in Indianapolis, and it saddens me that the wall on which the installation once hung is now so bare. Every day, everyone deserves to be told that they are beautiful.

Candidly Clyde Guest Post on Uncustomary Art

Murals. Indy’s got a lot of ‘em. My favorite mural is Stargaze, which is located at the northwest corner of South and Delaware streets. It was designed by Jose Di Gregorio and Andy Fry and was painted last October by volunteers from City Way and Eli Lilly & Co. I love Stargaze‘s vivid colors and sharp lines, especially since I consider triangles to be close, personal friends of mine. If ever you find yourself in front of Stargaze, snap a photo of it; the mural has its own hashtag on Instagram: #thatindymural.

Candidly Clyde Guest Post on Uncustomary Art

Rain, sleet, snow, hail, and literal cats and dogs could all be falling from the sky and it wouldn’t matter; Ann would keep swinging her hips. Ann Dancing is a 4-sided LED “column” that features a faceless woman who dances the nights (and days) away. The piece was created in 2007 by artist Julian Opie, and originally was part of a temporary exhibition. Now, Ann lights up one of Massachusetts Avenue’s jazziest intersections (note the Kurt Vonnegut mural in the background). Ann even has her own parody Twitter account. (She’s a sassy gal.)

Candidly Clyde Guest Post on Uncustomary Art

Known colloquially as “100 Acres,” the Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park is one of the largest museum art parks in the country. It is adjacent to the Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA) and features several ongoing commissions, including Kim Beck’s NOTICE: A Flock of Signs. The clusters of signs are scattered around the park and have become one of the most-photographed installations. I love them because they are whimsical and perplexing. Plus, the signs say things such as, “Happy Tree” and “Invasive Human” and “Thing.” A Flock of Signs isn’t the only well-known installation at 100 Acres, however. Funky Bones, for instance, was featured in John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars. As you can imagine, the site is often visited by TFIOS fans who recreate Augustus and Hazel’s picnic. Okay? Okay.

Candidly Clyde Guest Post on Uncustomary Art

Roy Lichtenstein’s Five Brushstrokes is located on the lawn in front of the IMA. Though Five Brushstrokes originally was commissioned in the 1980s, it was not installed at the IMA until this past summer. The installation consists of five separate structures, the tallest being 40 feet. And while this installation is an excellent example of pop art, one “brushstroke” looks suspiciously like bacon. (And I don’t argue with bacon.)

I really hope that the project receives enough funding to re-install the You Are Beautiful piece! How amazing is that one? I also hope that you enjoyed this tour of Indianapolis’ street art. If you’re interested in doing a tour of your city’s street art for a guest post on Uncustomary Art, please e-mail me. Otherwise, go check out Dawn on Instagram and her blog and tell her Uncustomary sent you!


We’ll start off easy this week! A cute but sassy bunny:

Get Messy Art Journal | Uncustomary Art

Okay, you good now? Good.

Get Messy Art Journal | Uncustomary Art

It’s been another week where an Against Me! song has been stuck in my head on repeat. You might remember, it was “I Was A Teenage Anarchist” before, and this week it’s “Thrash Unreal”.

It’s been on my mind so much lately that I actually added the music video to the bottom of a recent post where I confess a lot of things that prove my life isn’t all rainbows and confetti, and now I’m sharing some art journal pages, where I’ve written out my favorite parts to the song. (Full lyrics)

Get Messy Art Journal | Uncustomary Art

The song appeals to me for many reasons. I like that the story about this girl is something most people would decide is a bad, negative thing. Drugs that leave track marks, the “wrong” guys, and minimum wage jobs. Those are things we’ve decided, as a society, are undesirable. But then at the very end it comes back and says that she wouldn’t change anything for the world. It’s a reminder that we can live our lives the way that we want to, because at the end of the day, you’re the only one who has influence over your decisions, preferences, and values.

I also really like the fact that the girl they use to portray her in the video isn’t anything like you thought she’d look like, which is a reminder to me that you never know exactly what people are going through and appearances mean next to nothing.

Get Messy Art Journal | Uncustomary Art

The video is amazing, despite the poor acting of the featured girl. But when the wine falls down on the band through the ceiling, as that aggressive voice belts out the lyrics in such a raw, raw way… I can’t not feel infinite. (Ahem, 2:52.) And I dare you to not sing along to the “ba ba ba, ba ba ba da da” during the chorus.

Get Messy is an art journal challenge where a gang of crafty vixens are sharing art journal pages we have created to practise our skills and push past our creative limits with hopes to inspire. We share our pages without restraint every week, and once a month we create around a prompt. Go check out these crazy talented ladies who each have a unique perspective and style. We will be sharing our work around social media so follow the hashtag #getmessyartjournal

People tend to have a lot of questions about guerrilla art, and it’s fair because it’s not something most people know a lot about. Today I want to give some insight into what I’ve learned about the scene over the past two and a half years.

Guerrilla Art 101 | Uncustomary Art

There are a lot of different types of guerrilla art. Sometimes we call it “public art” or “street art”, but it’s all the same thing. If you are claiming public space back for yourself and your community, then we’re talking about the same thing. Murals, graffiti tags, yarnbombs, and sidewalk chalk installations are all guerrilla art. And if you’re going to go out on the town and paint it into a rainbow, there are a few things you should be aware of.

Understand that anything you’re doing can be considered illegal, unless you have explicit permission from the place you’re working at. At a base level, you could be charged with trespassing, littering, or the destruction of property. This is why I like to work with mediums that are mostly temporary, so if I were to ever be asked to stop by the police or another type of authority, it would be easy for me to inoffensively take it down and move on.

Sometimes, though, there are places in your city that are more or less designated for street art. There is an L shaped alley in Baltimore called “Graffiti Alley” that the police have basically decided it is legal to spray paint in. Do some internet searching for your town and see if there’s something similar.

There are also opportunities to get paid to do your art. Talk to people in the public art sect of city works or businesses who might commission you to make their buildings more beautiful.

Guerrilla Art 101 | Uncustomary Art

Speaking of getting caught, know that this is an option. The entire time I’ve been doing this, I’ve never been stopped in a negative way. I tend to do my installations in the morning because things are less sketchy in the daylight. Act with confidence and it’s likely no one will think twice about what you’re doing. And most of the time, cops have more things to worry about than me wrapping yarn around a parking meter.

If you are asked to stop, then stop! You can always go somewhere else to do the same thing. And if there are cops on the scene when you get there, just wait for them to leave. Don’t give them a reason to have to interact with you.

Not everyone is going to like that you’re doing this. People might take your work down, or deface it. You might not come back to what you expected to see, and you have to accept that as soon as you walk away from a public work, it is a gift to the community. And not everyone is going to sit down and write you a thank you card. This does make the times that things work out even sweeter, though.

Lots of passersby are going to ask what you’re doing, though, just out of curiosity. It can be kind of daunting (and scary) to have to explain what you’re doing to dozens of people, so you can say things like: “It’s just for fun”, “Just adding a little color”, or “It just looked a little gloomy here!”

Guerrilla Art 101 | Uncustomary Art

Make sure you bring any supplies you might need. Scissors, tape, glue, string, needles, business cards, extras. And bring a bag to keep everything in. What I like to do as soon as I’m done installing is hide all my supplies and take out my camera, that way, if someone who would hate what I did came by, I can just say I found this and am taking pictures. I’m no longer the artist, just a bystander.

Decide if you want to be anonymous or not. This doesn’t need to be a decision that goes across the board, mind you. There are some things that I always leave my card on and some things I prefer to do from an anonymous point of view. But you do need to figure out if it’s something you want your name attached to or not.

Guerrilla art does not need to be political. Many artists choose to make their installations a statement of some kind, but that doesn’t need to be the case. As Keri Smith says, “the medium itself is the political act”.

There are politics within the local scene, though. Artists can be kind of nasty to each other, and there becomes an air of competition and the fear of “snitching” on others to get yourself off if you’re caught. It can also be very taboo to do an installation on top of someone else’s work.

Scouting out your location, including potential measurements is highly beneficial. Start off in neighborhoods where you’re more likely to be appreciated. You’d know your town better than me. And never endanger yourself just to do an installation.

Really, just think about what attracts you to this as an art medium. Do you like to interact with strangers? Do you want to pass along good vibes to your community or give them something to enjoy and participate in? Figuring out what draws you to it will make it easier for you to get your foot in the door. Start with something you’re comfortable with and work up your confidence level.

If you want to get yourself a starter kit, I have some in my shop!

Mediums to consider:

Stickering
Stencils
Flyers
Yarnbombing
Interactive
Disposable Cameras
Murals
Spray Paint
Guerrilla Gardening
Eyebombing
RAOKs
Sidewalk Chalk
Performance Art
Sculpture
Snail Mail

Some of my favorite guerrilla artists:

Katie Sokoler
Candy Chang
Keri Smith
Luzinterruptus
Banksy
Olek
Deadly Knitshade
Improv Everywhere

Resources to check out:

The Guerilla Art Kit by Keri Smith
Sneaky Art by Marthe Jocelyn
Yarn Bombing by Mandy Moore + Leanne Prain
Craft Activism by Joan Tapper
On Guerrilla Gardening by Richard Reynolds


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