Monday, February 27, 2012

Little Things

Just a list of little things that make my world go round: beautiful sceneries, a nice cup of tea with milk, cute puppy faces, good hair-days, rainy Sundays, surprises, love notes, striped socks, people with funny mustaches, adventures, a slice of warm apple pie in the morning, a nice song, spying cats, cameras, a good read and some old school video games. Ah!

Saturday, February 25, 2012


Although I have been enjoying painting a lot, it was high time I used my super neglected tablet. Photoshop, I have truly missed you. We have a special connection, the two of us. We work as a team and I love that. Watercolours doesn't seem to trust me like you do. I promise I will never again leave you for such a long time. (:

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Lernen, lernen, lernen

For the past two weeks our dining table has turned into something like this. Sheets of paper with German grammar exercises are flying all around the place and I am basically falling asleep and waking up with thoughts in German. (my vocabulary is a bit scarce, but still...)
It's super fun, actually, to learn something you're interested in. I'm always interested in new languages, no matter how super crazy some rules are. (or the word order, in this case). I am a little bit nervous and pretty excited about the following days. I am eager to check my progress in German and to SPEAK, for the very first time, in front of a small audience of native speakers.

I would appreciate it if you could keep your fingers crossed for me, just in case! Positive thoughts always do the trick :)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

An Egyptian Collection

One of my favourite things to do when I was little was watching documentaries about ancient Egypt. I was (and still am) so fascinated by every single piece of their history.
Visiting an egyptian collection is even more fun when you have your personal translator with you. Yes, that is right. Lazar has studied egyptology back in Bulgaria and can actually read some of those pretty hieroglyphs. How lucky am I?

This cute little statuette is one of the gems of the egyptian collection in Kunsthistorisches Museum. During the Old Kingdom the female hippo was seen as a deity of protection in pregnancy and childbirth. Egyptian women wore amulets depicting the hippo goddess - Taweret, to protect their pregnancies. The motif was used in the decorations of beds and headrests, because of its protecting powers.
The image of the goddess has changed with time. Later on, the goddess was depicted as half human, carrying an ankh - the symbol of life, or a knife - to chase away evil spirits. This statuette depicts the original perception of the goddess. It is more than 4000 years old and is so well-preserved, its colours and details still amusing the people.

In ancient Egypt even in death the rich people differed from the poor. You can see how different the left mummy mask is from the right one. The gilding on the face symbolizes the union of the dead with the Sun God. The black and gold wig and the rich gilding suggest that it was the death of a wealthy man. The right mask has more details but has been done with more ordinary materials and suggest the death of a less wealthy man. However, both of them depict the close connection between an ordinary person and God, and the striving for perfection and eternal life.

Are you fascinated by ancient Egypt as much as I am?

Thursday, February 09, 2012


My watercolour adventures continue!
I am a bit sick (bad weather came to Austria, too. And although I love snow I can't really enjoy it without Dexter.) and I am staying home, drinking tea and reading. But, you know, you can't just sit around doing nothing. Even when you're sick. So I took out my favourite set of watercolours and decided to make a friend for this little girl.
I enjoy painting so much that I have completely forgotten about Photoshop. For now. I think I might need to use my new tablet at some point, though. I bet he's not enjoying himself stuck in that box.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012


The St. Charles Church in Vienna (better known here as Karlkirche) is said to be one of the most outstanding baroque church structures in the world.
The construction of the building began in 1716 and took 21 years to finish. After the death of the primary architect, J.B. Fischer, his son completed everything using partially altered plans. The ambitious design of the Karlkirche combines architectural elements from three different cultures. There are elements from ancient Greece (the columned portico), ancient Rome (the two Trajanesque columns) and contemporary Viennese Baroque (the dome). This is the reason the design of the church is always regarded as something of an architectural curiosity and was never imitated by any other architect.

The interior of the church is much more conventional than the exterior, but is still impressive, with High Baroque decoration. The vault frescoes depict St. Charles Borromeo begging the Holy Trinity to end the plague in Vienna. The large round glass window high above the main altar symbolizes God's love and absolution.

The green copper dome of Karlskirche rises 72 meters high and a special lift in the church can take you to the very top. I don't like such improvements, since I prefer old buildings to keep their original appeal, but I guess building an elevator was the only way for people to have a close look at the beautiful ceiling paintings. The depiction of the little children looking at the grey bird is actually the highest painting, just at the center of the dome.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Things that make me happy

I don't know about you, but I rarely use my cell phone as a... phone. I almost always leave it at random places and forget where it is, or forget it at home when I go out. But since I've been using it as a camera, capturing daily shots of all the things around me, things have changed. I carry it with me almost every time. And I capture everything colourful and pretty.
Painting has kept me busy lately. I lost my tablet pen, so I had to buy some supplies that I hadn't used for ages. The first picture is a glimpse of the canvas I am currently working on. Acrylics are fun!
I love witty messages. I like them even more when they're in German and I can understand every single word. (I am making progress!) Picture 2 is a postcard I found in a little bookstore here. It says "When the end of the world comes, I'll go to Vienna. Everything there happens 20 years later." I think that is my plan, too.
Did you know that there is a free application for iPhone, that turns Mona Lisa's portrait into 3D? All you need to do is point your phone at a Mona Lisa picture (you don't have to be at the Louvre... though it would be more fun, ha!) and voila! Mona Lisa looks like she's about to jump out of the frame and kiss you on the cheeks.
On the other pictures you can see my last fortune cookie (so mysterious!), the watercolours I've been so excited about and a tiny carousel. The pink one is a quick shoot I did today that I really like. This is the chimney of Vienna's Fernwärme, but it really looks like a cloud factory to me. Doesn't it? Next is my Little Prince quotations box, that helps me learn new German words in a fun way. A banana, that I spotted near home today and instantly reminded me of Andy Warhol. And, of course, Dexter. The prettiest of them all! :) I miss his wintery pink nose and I can't wait to snap another load of pictures of him. Isn't he the cutest fella?

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Rediscovering watercolours.

If you spend most of your time drawing on Photoshop (or any other computer program), you somehow forget about paper. I mean - when I know I have my tablet around, I prefer to use it instead of doing sketches and doodles in a notebook. (except when I'm traveling with the underground or waiting for someone somewhere.)
But when I lost my tablet pen I decided to try it. And guess what? It feels great!
I hadn't used watercolours for ages. The last time was most probably in middle school. All I can remember from back then is that I never got the hang of it and it always turned out a complete mess.
What I used to see as imperfections and bad paint coverage is what I absolutely adore now about watercolours. It's simple and easy and so much fun to use brushes again that I think my new tablet will stay unopened in its box for a while. Painting with watercolors is great! And it's the best way to relax after a whole day of grammar exercises in German.