This year my grandma turned 80 and for this special occasion me and my mom decided to travel across continents and the ocean to go and visit her and our family in Brasil.
My Brazilian heritage is very important to me and I always say that I’m way closer to that side of me rather than to the Italian one. I love Italy and I consider it one of the most stunning countries on earth, but Brasil definitely holds a big part of my heart.
The people, the culture, the music, the food, the places, the art.. I love absolutely everything about it.
While in Brasil I tried to paint, doodle and draw as much as I could – I also had to study but that didn’t go as well as the rest.
I brought with me a few pieces of watercolor paper, my watercolors, some colored pencils and some markers, and obviously my A5 notebook.
I bought my notebook at Tiger and it was very simple and plain, so I decided to decorate it a bit, taking inspiration from Instagram and my new love for plants and leaves.
I use it as a memento-keeping, storing photos, drawings and pieces of whatever from special moments as this vacation, my graduation, my first concert..
I love these photos not only for the moments they portray but also for how they actually are: squared!
Printiki* printed them and sent them right to my doorstep; you may remember that I worked with Printiki before and was very happy with how their photos are, so I immediately considered them when thinking about printing my vacation photos.
First, let me say that I know it might be old fashioned, but I love the feel and look of printed photos. Having them on your smartphone, camera or computer is great, but actually touching them and being able to arrange and showcase them around your house is even greater.
I chose this format because it’s different from the usual ones and it fits perfectly in my notebook, leaving space for decorations.
The format is Square M; you can choose to add a thin colored border like I did, or even a polaroid look, choosing the Retro Square M.
I love keeping brochures, tickets and anything that I can creatively use.
Although I’m not entirely *in love* with my set up and decorations, not being used to use markers instead of watercolors, I know that it’s not important. What’s important is having fun and enjoying the process and being able to portray your emotions.
I’ve visited a lot of places, discovering my new favorite cafes, shops, beaches and more – and I’ll tell you all about them in my next Brasil-related post, which will be a simple and handy guide to help you wander in Rio De Janeiro.
Being able to remember the moments spent in these stunning places, with equally stunning people, is very important to me.
While I was in Brasil I didn’t have time to sit down and put together the notebook, but since I wanted to relax and paint a little, I used the pieces of watercolor paper and my watercolors to portray 3 of my favorite places in Rio De Janeiro: the Pão de Açucar, the Jardim Botanico, and Petropolis.
I packed with me a total of 10 colors even though I used only about half of them.
I used 2 small containers so that I could easily carry them with me whenever I went, I used on for the warm colors and the other one of the cold ones.
I brought with me:
Cadmium Yellow Medium, Golden, Ruby, Quinacridone Lilac, and Burnt Umber.
Ultramarine, Turquoise Blue, Green, Olive Green, and Neutral Black.
These watercolors are artists’ watercolors from Nevskaya Palitra and they are absolutely amazing. It’s the White Nights set and the colors are very natural, vibrant and there are a lot of different and interesting nuances.
I either use some simple brushes with natural bristles, or the pen brush – which I need to substitute because its life is slowly coming to an end; this one is particularly handy and easy to use because it stores the water and you only need to tap the tip in the color and start painting.
This vacation was very important to me, it allowed me not only to see my family again, but to relax, let go of every problem and concern that caused me stress and anxiety, and find myself again.
Everything in Brasil is very different, the mentality itself of the people is very different from the Italian one. It may be because I didn’t have University classes, exams or any other real commitment, but I felt so free to be myself without any expectation, judgement or second thought.
There are different canons of life: every body form is accepted with its perks and flaws, you can go out without any makeup and without having to think about what people may think – I do that I lot and people judge a lot, internally and externally; people are nice, welcoming, loud, funny, caring, open.. It’s not hard to understand why I love this country so much.
Are you headed somewhere this Summer? Tell me about your vacation or staycation and what you love to do in your free time!
LITTLE SECRET: AS A BACKGROUND FOR THE PHOTOS I USED 2 OF MY ACTUAL PAINTINGS
Disclaimer: The mentioned products(*) have been sent to me freely by the reference so that I could make an objective evaluation and declare my honest opinion, not influenced in any way by having received the products in question.