Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Bill Cunningham


Bill Cunningham New York Trailer from Gavin McWait on Vimeo.

"Fashion is the armor to survive the reality of everyday life, I don't think you could do away with it. It would be like doing away with civilization, that's what I think."           —Bill Cunningham

I have never thought of myself as a particularly fashionable person, nor someone who cares very much for the fashion world; but every week I look forward to seeing Bill Cunningham's work for the New York Times in the form of "On the Street". These slideshows are particularly fascinating to me, as a New Yorker, because he manages to capture glimpses into the street fashion of New York, which ties into the weather, or particular events.
So I was very excited when I found out that someone had made a documentary about him. This inside look into his life surprised me. I was so inspired by his enthusiasm and dedication to his work. The clear passion he has for what he does, and his humility about what he has achieved is astounding. I related to his view on life when he says "He who seeks beauty will find it". Nothing could be more true. I think we should all hope to be so taken with our work. He is a truly remarkable person.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Gumption

 
Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell is my favorite book to date. I am currently reading it for the fourth time, and it is no quick read. However, that is one of the things I enjoy most about the book - that the reader follows the characters through many years of trial and tribulation, so much so that by the end I feel as though I know Scarlett, Rhett and everyone else who has survived the war.
However, this post is not about the book, but about the quote above, which I worked into a typographic piece. I felt a need to give it some extra attention because I have found it to be such a pertinent statement. Although Gone With the Wind was published in 1936, I still feel what Mitchell writes to be contemporary in many ways. I am especially fond of the word gumption, which many would think of as an old-fashioned word, but I think of as the perfect word to use when describing a quality I find essential in the people I surround myself with, and something I pride myself in possessing and striving toward.
Gumption can be defined as shrewd or spirited initiative and resourcefulness; common sense; courage; spunk; guts. It might be easier to get along in this world without gumption, but it surely would not be nearly as exciting, productive or joyous. I don't think the first pilgrims would have gotten very far without it, and I doubt America would be its own country without a bit of it as well. Let's hear it for GUMPTION!