Sabrina

Our continuation of #girlstories…

The epiphany rang.

There was an evil sinister coming to Elevententeen.

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Sabrina sat up from her seat and left her lunch in the mist. She was mentally picturing her fuzzy, white sweater getting soaked from the rain and it made her livid. She was too embarrassed to adjust, people were observing. She trudged through, carrying a green umbrella.

Carrying books in a used plastic bag, she walked to her class. Virtuoso would be there. Her heart skipped a beat knowing that he would test her classically trained ear. He didn’t know she lost the ability. For this exam, she would pretend; she could not hear a thing.

Only black. Sabrina quickly glanced at her feet to see where she was, her red rain boots covered in dew drops. Then, she coughed and tiny gray particles with lavender pieces came shooting out of her mouth. She coughed again and the door opened.

She couldn’t hold onto her books anymore. They dropped down the silver lining. Her arms struggled to reach for something, anything to stop her from slipping. There were branches sticking out on each side of her, then suddenly she remembered.

She was Alice and Sabrina was the nightmare.

10 years ago.

She didn’t want to see it, she squeezed her eyes shut to ignore what was going to happen next. No, no, no! She cried, just leave me alone! Don’t let this happen, loyal judge, I will bring you the falcon! But whomever she was speaking to didn’t care. She looked down and could see her legs changing into wide tree trunks, covered with green frost and violet branches. She looked at her hands and they too were made of wood. The apple from her lunch pack floated in a thick orange residue, and she reached for it, but it just turned into mush with a face, laughing. Oh shit, this is it. The sounds around her went bleep.

Finally, kerplunk.

Sabrina landed on soft ground. It was ridiculous that a tree could wear a blue dress. Still, she patted down her pinafore and retied a green bow. Judge? She searched. Her crispy hands aimed for her head. She ducked down as she knew she wouldn’t be able to prune her braids. The ground became solid with tiny, little versions of signs propping up, one by one, all over the place. Everywhere was now everything.

She wore a black hat and had red-rimmed eyeglasses.

alice. (2)

She wore a purple jacket with dirt under her nail beds.

judge.

It was over.

They played a game to determine their next meal. They didn’t want to eat. They wanted to get out of here. A sinister laugh bellowed from the fog’s bounds and they knew Judge Judy was prepared. Prepared to assign Sabrina with her next task. Prepared to evaluate the worth of Alice’s size, since she was just going to be used at the tribune. And throughout the entire evaluation, neither girl could sit still.

What would become of Sabrina’s jacket?

 

 

10 – The Final End

So, who do we got here? Filburt quipped – Stan’s over there. Shady from S and L pronounced, I seen Cherry standing to the right with her sister. So, who else is missing? Um, I think Seventeen and Each Other were caught making out in their cache car. Cache car? Yeah. Like you know. Invisible transportation to Life Space. And who’s leaving Life Space right now? A Tree. And I saw A Day go to. Okay, well…we are close to arranging the final tribune.

We were that close.

“He came in and interrupted me!”

“Ya so. Why didn’t you just tell him to leave?”

Daisy was walking down the sidewalk. Again. It was raining. The weather never changed here. It was consistently blue-gray and purple. Wet and bleak. The sunshine rays were hidden by Indigo; the pupils of Elevententeen did not deserve Paradise Colours.

We were that.

“Filburt, can you please pass me my tea?”

“Ya sure. Here you go, do you have enough cream?”

Daisy’s milk was a nice colour of baby lime chartreuse. She didn’t even want to stir it, because then it would change into something orange and forceful. She was deciding on a Dream for the day, to carry with her in the front pocket of her Levi’s. She had another note in there from Baby Bear, who was said to be related to Seventeen and Other of Each Other. The wall at the Nike outlet now included various options for Dreams in colours ranging from green to teal to yellow. Unfortunately, that was the only colour palette available, because the others were worth too much due to their high wavelength interval. “Man, I miss orange! This blue just won’t do!”, Daisy exclaimed as she clearly had too much of a muddled mind frame to understand the meaning of that statement today.

Okay, okay, so back to The Tree. His name was Paul and instead of having a bright orange-red beard, his was blue inserted with tiny, little firs which themselves housed tiny, little owls. He was out hunting between the three primary states and had business to do across all of them. Life Space was his first stop. He was looking for Alice and her dreadful creations from God. Then, it was onto Chon where he could take a break. Eat a cherry scone and perhaps accompany it with a hot drink of lemonade. And final resting place – Elevententeen. He was supposed to bring back some girl named Daisy. Apparently, she held a key to something. His bosses were still trying to figure it out.

We were.

“In about 5 minutes, I am going to explode!”

“Let it happen, man. Things don’t get better than that.”

I’ve got to walk faster now. Where the fuck did I go? Daisy picked up her pace, the sound of her soles squeaking becoming more intense. Finally, she arrived. She looked up and read the sign – Judge Judy. It was an imposing wooden structure that looked distorted when you peered up towards the roof. She was analyzing it a little bit, because it wasn’t from here. She could tell, its proportions were all wrong and the perspective of its facade was vibrating like a green on red channel. She actually wasn’t sure now if she should enter. But before she could decide further, the gigantic brass door opened and a dark, teal gray smoke began to generate from the bottom slants.

We.

“Pssst. Come in this way. I’ll leave the door open for you.”

Daisy knew who that was. It was darn Alice! How did she get in here? She knew better that Paul and Jared were looking for her. Her heart rate grew and it was becoming one of those distant Dreamsicles. She didn’t want any more of it. She was beginning to lose her originality and she wouldn’t be able to pick up a new set from Linz anytime soon. Daisy was heartbroken.

“If I can just get my mind past the pretense of it all, I might be able to recall something worthwhile.”

“You won’t do it. You don’t have the balls.”

The judge tore a sheet of paper out of her book and it made a long and terribly loud hissing sound – pppssssssssssssssssssssssssss! Was that really necessary, asked Alice. Judy replied with a hiss of her own, yes, yes it was. Daisy has come. Now what are we supposed to say? She will notice the difference. She can tell that we’re lying.

Daisy turned a sharp corner and again, cranked her neck upwards to preview the alarmingly high walls. Somewhere up top, there was a ceiling. It was all written in code. She wanted to read it so bad, but she slipped on the onyx glass floor, fumbling her belongings, of which a bright, green granny smith apple came flying out of her purse. Filburt ran ahead to catch it. Ugh, why are we even here, Daisy thought. Filburt answered her in his mind – Daisy, we are here because you are supposed to be here. We are trying to find the reason for Being. And, we need to present our findings to the tribune by December!

Alice sat affirmatively on a cushy yellow Dream. She took a bite and sighed. Judy followed by adjusting her large bottom on an orange one. They both sat in silence, chewing their gum.

On the left side wall, as soon as she turned the corner, Daisy saw two prints framed in gilded gold. One said Life, the other said Free. She wondered if she was supposed to be doing something with them. She tried lifting the frames off the wall, but they were drilled to it with solid steel jelly beans. Those things don’t move. She then placed her hand on their screens. The words flashed in different colours, but nothing else happened. Out of nowhere, two flashy young men appeared. She knew instantly who they were. It was The Need and The Pause. Chasing after her, of course.

The Writing she was doing was combining with Training. This was not supposed to happen. She was going to be in a lot of trouble. She just knew it. As an artist, she works. As a specialist, she writes. Ugh, this was not going to help her at the tribune. Just then, a booming voice entered the space, “Alice! Come forth to room 1!”

Daisy, she meant.

And that was that. She took off as fast as she could, carefully watching her step on the slippery glass stage. Blinking, Daisy looked around. “Class! It’s glass! Please pay attention!” Her forehead wrinkled. Again, she thought. When was it going to end? When was it the final end? “But today, my dear. Were you sleeping again?” Her teacher prompted as she handed her an exam. “Write this first. Then, we will determine what’s next.” Daisy shrugged. She had no choice anyway. So, she might as well participate. She squinted. At the corner of her eye, she saw them. She whipped her head around to see. But nothing. Just two barren doors. Totally uninteresting. Not brass even. She could have swore Tom Need and Tim Pause were there. Was she still asleep?

 

9 – Coming Down

I’m so tired, Daisy thought. You’re always tired, retorted Cherry. She was just sitting there, twiddling her thumbs, looking at her green shoes. She turned her head right, was there something there? She suddenly felt uncomfortable. Someone was watching them. They didn’t know who.

It’s time to pack, dear. The routine was the same every June. Alice from Wonderland would arrive to take Daisy home. Daisy couldn’t do it without help. It was a sad time for her. She was remembering the death of her mom, those last few cigarettes she had outside with her dad, in the snow. She was really angry Being because of Ben. He ruined her life, led her astray. She was an addict when she was with him.

Forget thinking about it, darling. Alice stroked Cherry’s hair, handing her a cheese and ham biscuit. This is ridiculous. I’m practically choking on this bread, it’s getting lodged in my throat! I can’t take it anymore! By then, their tears were flowing, ruining everything including a pink dress and a gigantic muumuu.

All of the pupils present today were busy writing down their answers. Not me. I’m just going to sit it. Read his brain. Oh shit, he’s looking. The girls looked away, frantically grabbing their miniature Navajo backpacks, matching, gifts from the Philippines and their Auntie Stella.

Daisy? Can you contribute something to this discussion we’re having? Her teacher was frustrated, but tried his best to be kind and patient. Daisy twitched her mouth. No, I don’t think I can. They could feel every single eye in the room blink. Then, 999,999 heads turned to look at her. What were they expecting? She wasn’t going to put on a show. And especially not in this muumuu. Do you have anything to say, young miss? Neither had enough bitcoins to argue. Clearing her throat, Miss Daisy stood up. Cherry budged in front, knocking her sister to the floor. I bought these with my own cash! Dreams, actually. It was Toys clearly. Can any one of you in the room debate that? We highly think naught. And with haste, they flipped their skirts and left the room.

Flying through the wind, Cherry grabbed her big sister’s hand. They were going to be just fine.

5 Influential Marketing Personalities

Hi everyone! Without further ado…

We crowdsource (ideas). It’s our membership and contribution to the digital landscape. Wikipedia says –

Crowdsourcing is a sourcing model in which individuals or organizations obtain goods and services, including ideas and finances, from a large, relatively open and often rapidly-evolving group of internet users; it divides work between participants to achieve a cumulative result. The word crowdsourcing itself is a portmanteau of crowd and outsourcing, and was coined in 2005.[1][2][3][4] As a mode of sourcing, crowdsourcing existed prior to the digital age (i.e. “offline“).[5]

Crowdsourcing is a great way to develop content and topics for your target audience. I put together a listicle based on a few influential marketing personalities I admire. In my opinion, they provide some answers (to my design life) and a unique perspective. I hope  they can help you in any way, shape or form.

Also, here they are in a creative digital collage. Does it make you crave mangoes or money?

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1

 

Chris Do, Matthew Encina & the team at Blind

It started with advice from my brother. He goes, check out the vlog by The Futur. This happened right when I started at VanWhistle Media. I was looking for a way to feel inspired. These guys helped me identify high-end pricing techniques and I designed my website portfolio around a couple of videos they put out with creative director of Vrontikis Design Office, Petrula Vrontikis. I’m drawn to these guys for simple reasons – energy and passion.

2

Seth Godin

It started with an interview. Chris Do and Seth Godin, together, hashing out topics like, What is school for? Watch it on YouTube – Seth Godin—Make Something Everyday (Best Hour You’ll Spend Today). This was the first time I felt inspired to write continuously and I tried out (half of) his challenge by posting 50 blog posts, once a day. I didn’t quite make it to 50, but the point of the matter is, I identified with Godin’s creative process. He also coined the phrase Make Change Happen, a slogan I adopted for my artistic identity BLOX.

3

Barney the Business Guy

Just a straight-up, no fluff business guy, I follow Barney Cohen on Instagram. I can’t remember how our paths crossed, but he offers a refreshing, business-minded approach to life’s common obstacles. Coming from a corporate background, I identify with his mentality, clear reasoning and straightforward delivery. He has 50 years of experience in business, so his acumen is spot-on. You can check him out on Twitter as well.

4

Neil Patel

Shoot, I almost forgot! Neil is probably the most humourous, dramatic, yet to-the-point marketing entrepreneur I have come across to date. He helps me understand the importance of brand development and every time I come across his feed, I’m pretty sure we’re thinking the same thing. Quid pro quo at it’s finest, Neil can help you develop metrics that work and he will provide all the necessary reasonings behind it. On top of everything, he’s an excellent copywriter.

5

The Rock

To think mainstream is to truly understand the relationship between popularity and accessibility. The Rock shows us that fame can be your next door neighbour, unpretentious and welcoming. In the pursuit of greatness, his face and voice puts a sticker on my blank page. Everyone loves stickers. Not everything has to be complicated. Sometimes you are just a do-gooder with a gigantic heart. The Rock shares these emotions with me and his 154M followers.

What do you admire? Who inspires you to do better? Whether it be music or satirical retorts, we have something in common!

 

Influence

Hi everyone!

We want to fit into the human experience, but in today’s digital condition, it can all seem very confusing. Let’s explore the idea of illusion and HOW it relates to social media marketing.

An illusion is a misrepresentation of a “real” sensory stimulus – that is, an interpretation that contradicts objective “reality” as defined by general agreement. For example: reach, likes, your interaction with a mirror or the selfie.

The psychological concept of illusion is defined as a process involving an interaction of logical and empirical considerations. Common usage suggests that an illusion is a discrepancy between one’s awareness and some stimulus.

Are you able to identify some LABELS OF ILLUSION used in social media today? Do the labels impart a lesser or greater influence in terms of how we see ourselves and others?

Case Study

Label:

She is in a bikini, showing the world her body. She is smiling, so she is happy with her appearance and comfortable in her own skin.

Hypothesis:

Influence, as opposed to reach, can extend beyond numbers/demographics and descriptors/psychographics.

Explanation:

Within our cultural/societal context, the labels identified in pink can impart a greater influence on ourselves and others. (Note: influence does not always have a positive effect/affect.) HOW? Cultural appropriation (in visual arts, to appropriate means to properly adopt, borrow, or recycle) effects/affects everyone using the same medium. Marshall Mcluhan, considered by many to be the first father and leading prophet of the electronic age (leaderu.com) argued that, “The medium is the message.” Therefore, the more people exploring similar labels influence more people and the message itself becomes more significant or important. WHY? Cultural integrity says that everybody is included and can be a part of the message. Support is shown by repeating labels within both our cultural/societal context and the content of our individual situations (message). (Note: again, support can have a positive or negative effect/affect.) The more we relate to one another, the greater influence can be.

Exploration:

What we want to know is – HOW then, can we substantiate, quantify (excellence) or qualify (perfection) the labels that we see across channels and platforms? You’ve probably come across messages proclaiming, “She just looks that way online, but in real life, she is miserable.” Or captions that comment, “That is just a flattering angle, I’m posing.” And, “She used filters to slim her waistline and to make it seem like she is wearing makeup.”

Within our cultural/societal context, the labels identified in red impart an even greater influence on ourselves and others. HOW? Cultural integrity causes a competitive sentiment which promotes unique content and more importantly, individuality. This brings us back to asking WHY? And, we can answer in the same way as above — cultural appropriation says that everybody can be included and is a part of the message. Support is shown by repeating labels (or opposing labels) within both our cultural/societal context and the content of our individual situations (message). The more we relate or contend with one another, the greater influence will be.

So, how can we discern true ownership in a digital condition riddled with illusion? 

Cultural appropriation: to explore further

Cultural integrity: to explore further

Effect: to explore further

Affect: to explore further

Strong values and ideas in branding are important. This is cultural appropriation + cultural integrity. Everyone can play a role because as a whole, we are impressing cultural/societal change and development for ourselves and for others. No matter WHAT the message is, it is being shared and released within a free, digital democracy and thus, the content we create and HOW it is transmuted becomes a message in and of itself.

Influence is an original, unbiased and rare phenomenon. It can create a streamlined effect in messaging (communication), which affects WHY we think.

The questions become:

WHY do we choose to direct the flow of creation, messaging and communication (our omnichannel experience)? To change the human experience? To change negative thought processes? As an outlet to comprehend the difference between analog and digital meaning? To explore our digital condition? To belong to a revolution? To simply participate?

To expand:

Use Digital Presence – A Business Model (exploring left and right-brained equalization through messaging/communication management)

Conclusion (for now):

Blox. Communications is always looking for ways to impact the greater picture. We are a POWER OF INFLUENCE and we want to ask: HOW can we influence positive change in the human experience psyche using a digital mind frame? Can our channels become more transparent if a few simple rules (i.e. questioning ASMR) or set practices (use of the selfie to elevate self-esteem, rather than self-image) were put into place? Can our platforms be used for something other than self-promotion? This competitive nature that we rarely talk about, it is happening and what is it serving us? Do we need to adopt digital minimalism? Studies show anxiety among youths has skyrocketed and Generation Z is suffering the consequence with increased cases of depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), impulsive disorder, problems with mental functioning, paranoia, and loneliness (adaa.org). Needless to say, our society is up to speed. We know this is going on, but WHAT are we going to do to change it?

Worry is a false attribute. That is the argument – that our involvement in the digital condition is impacting the human experience, our psyche, modes of thinking and ways of communicating messages. We can choose to negate the entire experience, or we can believe that change is already happening. And, for the better.

We don’t need physical collaboration. It occurs spontaneously through the power and magic of digital media. We are all potentially working together, depending on how you choose to see it.  Your perception is bold enough to see outside of regular composition. You can see more than the truth that the regular world presents to us. You see an ideal, an ideal that is off the grid and too good to conceive. So, it is a matter of comprehension. HOW will we bring the world together in our new digital condition? Can we teach youth HOW to go beyond apparent teachings? Can humankind collectively push the boundaries of medicine and science (through art and language), so that our human experience can be brought into a new time frame that will change the very aspects of our health and wellness?

Continue to imbue your force upon other forces. In this great way, wild things will occur. Changes guys, changes!

This journal (thesis development) is TBC. If you have any inquiries, please reach out – info@chonsfecanlas.com.

7 – Breathe Life

The train made its usual stop at Chon. Chon was the last remaining urban centre, where transforming humans dabbled in post-consumerist delights like colourful French macarons and antique Balenciaga dad pants. It was a place for fun and rest.

Daisy sat up. She was awake for the last little while, finishing her sandwich and still wondering about Mr. Beaver in the hat. He was gone, probably somewhere between Life Space and Elevententeen. She was happy to be at Chon. She wondered if her best friend from Calgary was there. It was Linz, she worked for WestJet, a now defunct flight carrier that was sold off to Indigo, a distributor of Paradise Colours. Really, the world was so different now. The practice of social media marketing was a language in and of itself. Depending on one’s digital cognition, it could provide sustenance to an audience or increase the relativity of binary disease. After all this time, survival of the fittest was still the game. Humans didn’t want to be sick. They didn’t want to be dead or alive. They wanted to be living, breathing real air and doing regular chores.

As she stepped off the bus (she’s been off the train for A Day now), Daisy headed to the Nike outlet, so she could change her clothes into something more beguiling. Her mind thought of lime green, neon orange polka dots and always-always white eyelet lace. Daisy picked something out. While waiting, she made her third eye blind to prevent identity thieves from crushing her steez, then headed to the wall of bags to pick something out to put it all in.

Afterwards, she stopped at Yoga Passage. It was that time of day again to reset and recharge. Yoga was literally a moment to decompress. Everything left your body as your soul lay suspended in a hue of neon pink. Rearranging locations and transformations, so you could see properly. Daisy practiced yoga once, when she was young and did not finish her teacher training practice. Alice from Wonderland stopped a sour pursuit of a man named Justin Patterson, as he would have led her to full-fledged inebriation. The relationship was stopped by a major car alternative.

Lying in Savasana, Daisy fondled her mat, remembering that life filled with creativity and ideas can shut places to smithereens. She closed her lids and drifted off into space. She could see letter z’s italicized, drifting into time followed by baby emoji apples and puffy digital rainbows. It was the stuff of her man-made dreams. Visions, they come in Elevententeen.

Do you see orange or blue?

6 – The Train Naps

Daisy was out, then she arose. She could feel the left side of her neck, bent out of shape and sore from sleeping on it bent. And the train was still moving across moist carpeted land or moss coloured greenery, however you wanted to see it. The trees, they looked like LEGO pieces. She didn’t quite understand when she transitioned back, but she was glad to be here, smelling the faint stink of a ham and cheese biscuit.

You don’t actually want to see the workings of Elevententeen. What’s behind it is extremely frightening. The framework is made up of spider-like grids, when you see it, they move and pulse like a living thing. Daisy shuddered at the mere thought of it. She quickly patted her yellow eyelet dress to ensure it was still in existence. Another way to halt the screams (screams occur when your brain computes the framework) was to enter Elevententeen with a very specific wardrobe, preferably containing bold colours, pattern and texture.

Sighing, Daisy remembered what it was like in social media school learning about plain stuff. Graphic art and design attributes were existential now, they served no purpose. People only wanted multi-dimensional graphics, that breathed and pulsed and held meaning. I guess altering genetics in 2019 completely erased the human need for new things and surprisingly, technology. It no longer occurred. It was too fickle and rambunctious; nobody cared. It was now about Artha, Manipura and finding pure bling that could get you back through the framework unnoticed.

There were no humans on the train today, only empty seats and a refined beaver quietly sipping Earl Grey. “Well, he looks…dry…and  relaxed…so he must have come from the land.” The beaver heard and adjusted his frames while cocking his head North East. He wanted to see if he could grab the newspaper from thin air instead of having to hold it in his hands. Paper was so archaic, he thought. Daisy wasn’t sure if he noticed her. Her heart skipped a beat and she stopped for a moment memory, as he again adjusted himself out of what looked like discomfort. Inhaling a deep breath, they both fell deeply asleep. The reflection on the mirror was blank. Someone had switched time and space, again. What was going to happen?