Attractive People, Attractive Places – The Roadtrip

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Few vacations breath as much room for exploration, inspiration and reflection into your life as a road trip. Be it an escape, a pursuit, or a mixture of the two, the open road does wonders to cleanse the soul and always reveals a new beginning at the end of the journey.  Solar flares, coffee stains, sunglasses and the ever-pulsing road mixtape define your destiny: a new set of rules exist and time disappears.

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This past trip through Texas and Louisiana certainly shook something loose in me and re-instilled my desire to meet, photograph and write about the people, places and things that inspire me. It was incredible and exciting (albeit a bit tiring and frantic at times…) to wake up and go to sleep in a new place each day. We drove through some of the biggest cities in the South, only to then spend miles passing heartbreakingly beautiful fields of wild animals and livestock that stretched out to the horizon. In Louisiana we drove along an elevated highway with nothing but the wild bayou beneath us—a forest of trees all around, covered to their very tops with water, giving the illusion of a sunken world. It was peaceful and centering to be away from my computer for a week and to write all of my thoughts and notes in a journal.

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While on our trip I found a great quote by the epic Slim Aarons who said that he photographed “attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places”—and it perfectly sums up what these pages are devoted to, but in my case it’s the attractive people and their attractive projects…the things that make them tick and, in turn, make me tick. This is why I love to travel—you stumble upon those things (the people, the places, the projects) that you may have never discovered otherwise.

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Likewise, the best part of any road trip is discovering something new: be it down some dusty road where few have been before you, or right under your nose in a bustling metropolis. Our travels brought us to the doorstep of many wondrous new places (shout out to AirBnB and all of our hosts along the way…) but it was in New Orleans, the city we ended our trip in, that I discovered one of my (new) favorite designers: Ashley Porter of Porter Lyons.

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Her imaginative, sculptural designs representative of bayou and southwestern themes and imagery, infused with the Californian cool of the native-born artist, are exactly what I would have hoped to find on my journey. With collections like “Rebuild,” “Voodoo” and “Alligator” its hard not to get jazzed on learning more about Porter Lyons – the brand and the woman behind it. I picked up a piece from the “Backbone” collection—the Backbone Medallion—cast from real alligator backbone scutes* and have been wearing it ever since and poring over her site and instagram to learn more.

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And so, with this perfect talisman to commemorate a long journey, a new designer to covet, a million photos and pounds of laundry, I return to my “real” life with eyes open.

Shop Porter Lyons online or in New Orleans at Hemline or the Frenchmen Art Market.

 

*A Scute is a bony external plate or scale overlaid with horn, as on the shell of a turtle, the skin of crocodilians, and the feet of birds.

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