Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Can't we all just get along?

Yesterday, a car guard in Cape Town reminded me that both sexism and racism are still rife in this country. Yes, I know this is not meant to come as a surprise, but I guess the optimist in me wishes that people would stop and think before they say things that are potentially hurtful to others. There wasn't a scene, no one raised their voices, and it probably only lasted about 3 minutes in total, but those three minutes left me feeling so terrible about myself that I still flush when I think about it. What was said doesn't matter, the point is: stop being assholes and start loving one another. It's that simple.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Art that makes me feel AWESOME!

This is the best thing I've seen in a while and is absolute proof that humans can be awesome if we really want to be.

An English writer, illustrator and animator who goes by the name of October Jones gained notoriety earlier this year for his cartoon depictions of the passengers that he saw on his daily train trip to work. Now he's at it again, this time leaving motivational messages for his fellow train-riders - how amazing is that? I love it that he's using his skills to make people's days a little better - it sure worked for me!

Monday, 7 July 2014

Art lovers unite!

Don't you just love the Internet? Amidst the loads of junk and porn that clutters up whatever magical techno-stuff that makes up the world wide web, there is always the chance that you will stumble across something truly spectacular. And today, I have. I give you: the World Bodypainting Festival 2014. 

Described as an art, music and fashion show, every year artists from around the world gather in Pöertschach am Wöerthersee (a very small village in Austria) to portray their incredible walking artworks. This year marked the 17th World Bodypainting Festival, with 47 artists trying their hands at the theme POP ART. I love art, but I especially love art that breaks the boundaries of what is expected and gives the world something truly beautiful and inspiring. Throw in the fact that these talented artists created their pieces on human flesh, and you've got me hook, line and sinker! Check out some of my favourite looks from the festival, here.

For more about the World Bodypainting Festival, visit

Friday, 4 July 2014

New beginnings

The time has come, the walrus said, to talk of many things... and for Karen to take a deep breath and start again. Its funny how you dont even realise that life has run away with you until its seven months into the year and you finally stop and take a breath. As for this blog, I think it’s clear that it has taken a bit of a backseat. In all honesty, blogging is really HARD! (Cue tiny violins.) As a journalism graduate, everyone told me how important it was to start my own blog. And yes, I really could see the merits: it’s a great way to get yourself out there, practice your writing and keep far-away family and friends up-to-date with your life. But what all of my urgers failed to tell me was the impending self-doubt that comes along with it. Here I am, two years later, having sat silent for the past seven months convinced that it was mainly due to a lack of time. (That and a laptop screen that had a spiderweb crack across it the size of Sweden. Actually, I’m crap at geography – is Sweden even that big? I digress...). 

It’s the perfect excuse really, to put your creativity on hold and draw back from doing something that challenges you. But there comes a point where you’re not actually that busy and really could find the time to do anything your heart desires. And then that little monster named Apathy creeps in and you choose to gorge yourself on chocolate-chip biscuits and watch Game of Thrones until your eyes turn square instead of being a productive and contributing member of society. As time goes on, you start to wonder whether you actually are even any good at blogging, if anyone cares about your thoughts and why you bothered in the first place - what makes your life so darn interesting? And thus the vicious cycle of negativity begins...

But wait, all is not lost! Mother Earth gave us this wonderful thing to help us cope with such dilemmas: it's called sunrise. Regardless of what went on yesterday, last week, last year, each and every day that you get to experience a new day is an opportunity to start anew. So here I am, starting over again. (And trying to squash those hideous, pessimistic thoughts that tend to grow on the walls of my brain and heart.) I'm not going to make any resolutions or promises or plans. I just ask that you enjoy the ride that is my life, however bumpy it may be.