My Favorite Art Memory as a Child

My Grandfather wasn’t a famous artist. He was a retired store owner/Navy pilot that happened to enjoy expressing himself creatively on the side. I’m realizing now that his connection with Nature has been a huge influence in my work. As a young child, I’d watch him pursue amateur nature photography (which ended up being a huge reason for my interest in studying photo in college.) My favorite artistic connection to Nature growing up involved a fun project involving the beach: Shell art.

My grandparents lived southwest of Houston- about an hour from Surfside Beach. Now that I’ve visited proper beaches, I understand that Surfside was a little “subpar.” However, it had lots of shells, and still provides wonderful memories for me.

My grandfather would have me and my cousins scour the beach for shells that looked like something to us. Typically, a face of some kind- whether it resembled a human or animal face. When we’d get home, we’d separate them out and figure out a plan of action. My PawPaw would provide the cut posterboard, glue and cont├ę crayons. Sky was the limit for our imagination. His drawings were always so brilliant.

I recently found an old box of these shell drawings. Father Time has taken his toll on the non-archival posterboard, but for the most part, they’re in pretty good shape. I decided I should photograph them before they deteriorate any more. Here are a few of my favorites, as well as one of my creations from back then.

More can be found at ExperimentalArt.space/shell-art

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Election Night Cocktails 2016 ­čç║­č窭čŹ╣­čç║­čçŞ

No matter which candidate you vote for this year, you’re probably going to want a cocktail in your hand while watching the election results trickle in on Tuesday night.

Laura and our good friend Tonya tested and tweaked several recipes over the last couple of weeks so that you don’t have to. (Tough job, I know- but they were real troopers.)

I’m a craft beer fan (can’t stand liquor,) so MY job was to photograph the winners.

We’re proud to present the following tasty cocktails for your Election Night drinking pleasure. Enjoy!!!

(Please note: These drinks are marked classified and should be mixed by your own personal server)


Blackberry Mule

detail of a blackberry mule craft cocktail ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)blackberry mule craft cocktail ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)

Ingredients (serves 8):

  • 1/2 pint fresh blackberries
  • 1/2 bunch (1.5 oz) fresh mint
  • 1 1/2 cups vodka
  • 8 limes, juiced (about 1 cup)
  • 2 (16.9 oz) bottles Fever Tree Ginger Beer

Preparation:

  1. Muddle blackberries and mint in a large container
  2. Mix in vodka and lime juice
  3. Add ginger beer and gently stir
  4. Serve over ice, garnish with blackberry and mint sprig

Politically-motivated cocktail names, if you so desire:  Madam President, Ms. Nasty,  The Blue Donkey, Democratic Mule, True Blue Mule, The Muddled Putin


Bourbon Apple Pie

detail of bourbon apple pie craft cocktail ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)cinnamon sticks ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)detail of bourbon apple pie craft cocktail ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)

Ingredients (1 serving):

  • 1 1/2 oz bourbon
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 1/2 oz. apple juice
  • topped with Fever Tree Ginger Beer
  • 1 apple slice (use a mandolin slicer for thinner slices)
  • ground cinnamon

Preparation:

  1. In a glass with ice, stir bourbon, ginger and apple juice
  2. Top with ginger beer
  3. Garnish with apple slice, dusted with cinnamon

Politically-motivated cocktail names, if you so desire: ┬áAppleogize,┬áAppolegize, Apple-jize, (Trump’s pronunciation of apologize during debate- SNL skit), The Battleground, Fall Means This Election Is Finally Over


Blueberry Basil Margarita

blueberry basil margarita ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)detail of a blueberry basil margarita craft cocktail ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)blueberry basil margarita craft cocktail ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)

Ingredients (1 serving):

  • 2 oz tequila
  • 1 oz agave
  • 5 blueberries, plus garnish
  • 1 oz fresh-squeezed lime juice
  • 2 basil leaves, plus garnish

 Preparation:

  1. In a shaker filled with ice, muddle blueberries, lime juice and basil leaves
  2. Add tequila and agave, shake well
  3. Pour over ice and garnish with blueberries and basil

Politically-motivated cocktail names, if you so desire:  Bad Hombre, Hecho In Mexico, The Deplorable Margarita, Glassful of Deplorables, Hillarita, Midnight Margarita Tweet, Blue Ball Wall


Pineapple Jalape├▒o Rum

detail of a pineapple jalape├▒o craft cocktail with a siracha chili rim ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)pineapple jalape├▒o craft cocktail ┬ęCyndi Long (clstudios.com)

Ingredients (1 serving):

  • 3 oz rum
  • 3 oz pineapple juice
  • 1 oz fresh lime juice
  • 2 slices fresh jalape├▒o
  • 1 slice pineapple
  • 1 lime wedge
  • sriracha/chili salt

 Preparation:

  1. Run a wedge of lime around the glass rim and then dip rim in salt
  2. In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, muddle one jalape├▒o slice and pineapple
  3. Add rum, lime juice and pineapple juice
  4. Shake well, pour over ice
  5. Garnish with one thin slice of jalape├▒o

Politically-motivated cocktail names, if you so desire:┬á Feel The Bern, Grab ‘Em By The Pineapple, Rigged Rum, Pantsuit On Fire,┬áThe Undecided Voter


Oh, and just for fun- here’s some cocktail names that didn’t make the cut:

  • The Saucy Sanders (A Staunch Progressive Old Fashioned)
  • The Burning JebBush! Brandy Sour
  • Carson’s Eye Opener (Layered Espresso Martini, No Street Cred Required)
  • Ted’s Dead, Baby (A Pulpy, Non-Alcoholic Freak of Nature)
  • Christie’s Bridgegate Bourbon (Pairs Well With Going Nowhere Fast)
  • Who Invited Kasich? (Fairly Balanced, Slightly Sweet)
  • Rustic Rubio Reposado (For Large Hands Only)
Posted in [cyndi long], [food], [history], [information], [laura gonzales], [photography], [random shot from work today], [timewaste] | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Rings From Another Planet

I’ve always had a warm place in my heart for NASA/Space Exploration. My grandfather took me to tour the Johnson Space Center when I was a little kid. That warm and fuzzy feeling came back over me as I read about the history of space imagery, and how far we’ve come (and how far we’ll jump ahead with the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope in 2018.)┬áThis inspired me to create a set of images of something very near and dear to my heart. First, I must share another bit of history…

When my grandfather, Thomas Wilson Laney, retired in the 1970s, he decided to dabble in jewelry design. I didn’t learn of this until I took a class myself, and my grandmother dug these rings out to share. I was blown away by the structural design and uniqueness in these rings. She said they needed to be polished up–and one day I will honor that request– but for now, the natural oxidation is just too beautiful to wipe away.

Which brings me to this photography project. I found this amazing rock at a friend’s house down south of Austin. I knew I had to create some sort of a moonscape with it, but I wasn’t sure what. Over time, it became clear what I needed to do;┬á┬áa┬á“before and after” scenario, such as the jump from pre-Hubble to Hubble, or Hubble to James Webb. I searched and searched for┬áa subject matter that would fit the scale and also make sense to be in such an environment. Naturally, I gravitated toward using my Paw Paw’s rings. I seriously can’t imagine a more perfect set of objects to live in this world.

So, I dug out an old 28mm 4×5 film lens and got to work. The distorted edges help convey an older telescope. For the “new” image, I used a current-day 24mm Canon lens. I wanted a sense of magic for these moments in time, so I used the fun old trick of painting with light. I had a blast.

Rings created by Cyndi Long's Grandfather, Thomas Wilson Laney, in the 1960s.

MoonRock Rings “Hubble Space Telescope” by Cyndi Long

Rings created by Cyndi Long's Grandfather, Thomas Wilson Laney, in the 1960s.

MoonRock Rings “James Webb Space Telescope” by Cyndi Long

Posted in [cyndi long], [history], [inspirations], [photography], [science] | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Spring Has Sprung!

For Dallasites, the warm and humid weather has chased out the little bit of cold weather we get to enjoy. It’s nothing to complain about- especially when you understand what miserably hot and humid weather will be here before we know it!

I went to eat this beautiful sugar cookie duck (homemade by my rep/talented baker, Laura Gonzales) yesterday and decided it was too cute to not document in some way first. So, in honor of Spring and all of the wonderful things that implies, here is a short little animation:

https://vimeo.com/cyndilong/duckie

Still from Cyndi Long's sugar cookie duckie animation

Still from Cyndi Long’s Sugar Cookie Duckie Animation

 

 

You can see another documentation of a different, but equally beautiful sugar cookie here:

https://www.behance.net/gallery/25127457/Bunny-Sugar-Cookie-w-Details

Cyndi Long's Detail of Sugar on Bunny Sugar Cookie's Tail

Cyndi Long’s Detail of Sugar on Bunny Sugar Cookie’s Tail

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The House That Stan Built

My rep Laura Gonzales and I were excited to attend the Vendor Openhouse Tour of The Richards Group’s new home. It’s a stunning building overlooking I-75 Central Expressway and Uptown in Dallas, Tx.

To say it’s an upgrade would be an understatement. They didn’t go overboard trying to impress, but you can tell that the Design Team created a functional and inspiring place to work.

Stan Richards said it only took 17 months from land purchase to move-in. INCREDIBLE feat for all involved.

Here are a few shots I took while exploring the space:

 

Legendary "Stairwell" moment with Stan Richards

Legendary “Stairwell” moment with Stan Richards

 

Each floor has beautiful reclaimed wood by reception desk

Each floor has beautiful reclaimed wood by reception desk

 

Breakroom/copy areas under the circles

Breakroom/copy areas under the circles

 

Panoramic view of new seating arrangement and Downtown view

Panoramic view of new seating arrangement and Downtown view

 

Expansion-ready open space and gorgeous sunset view of Downtown Dallas

Expansion-ready open space and gorgeous sunset view of Downtown Dallas

 

Expansion-ready open space and gorgeous sunset view

Expansion-ready open space and gorgeous sunset view

 

Impressive wall of awards

Impressive wall of awards

 

Super cool trophy

Super cool trophy

 

Perfect

Perfect

 

Gentle reminder awaits employees coming off the elevator

Gentle reminder awaits employees coming off the elevator

Posted in [commercial art], [cyndi long], [dallas|texas], [laura gonzales] | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dallas Snow Day

I love exploring details that can’t be seen with the naked eye. We had some beautiful snow in Dallas yesterday (a rare treat for us.) 

It was a blast to see the different types of flakes falling- I just wish I would have used my real (High-Res Professional) camera!

More photos can be found on my Instagram feed: instagram.com/robotgas

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Posted in [cyndi long], [dallas|texas], [geek], [photography], [science] | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Happy (belated) Valentine’s Day

IMG_7499

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