13 INSTRAGRAMMERS TO FOLLOW | My InstaList

Lately I have been very active on Instagram and Pinterest, but not so much on WordPress. My subscription payment reminded me I should probably not let this blog die out and so I thought of jumpstarting this page again with some inspiring people.

So basically this list contains a couple of Instapages that inspire and fascinate me, by people who I think are making an impact (be it style-wise, ecological, spiritual, cultural, visual…). Most of them are chasing their dreams with a camera and pretty much all of them are really busy claiming their spot in this world by being their unique selves. I’m all about their vision and mission, and I hope the world will get to know them and I hope this way I can contribute a bit to that.

This is a pretty subjective list of course. You don’t have to agree with what I find fascinating, but who knows, you might think these Instagram accounts are worth a follow and spend a couple of hours exploring their IG mosaic.

It’s a pretty small selection. Mainly featured the ones, I thought were pretty special. To those who do trust my taste… enjoy. Those who don’t, you can always leave suggestions in the comments. I’ll check them out and maybe they make the cut for the next post.

LIFE + STYLE / Fashion statement

@mr.erbil

Some really stylish gents from Kurdistan. Hands down one of my favourite pages. Also, check out the amazing women and style goddesses they feature as ‘Thursday Woman’s inspiration‘.

IG_mrerbil

@strangewomensociety

Really curious and really fun. And are you really BFF’s if you don’t support your babes with this shirt? Also planning to start my own clan with this pin.

IG_strangewomensociety

@TheOutrageOnline

Not quite sure whether to put these activists under Fashion Statement, because they are more about the Statement than the Fashion, but it’s in there and they mention that they make apparel for ‘lovers of equality’. Pins did obviously make a comeback. Yeay for that. I don’t have enough skin to get a tattoo everytime I want to express myself, so pins are a good and slightly less permanent add-on. Also the reason tote bags need to stay happening

IG_theoutrageonline

@Mr.K Tattoo

But if you do prefer tattoos to make your statement. This guy has the most elegant, detailed and intricate tattoos I’ve ever seen and yes, I need them everywhere. Definitely check out the rest of his IG for his amazing work.

IG_mrk

@StudioMucci

As statements go Studio Mucci is definitely one… If you have a vision, spread it, and Amina Mucciolo did just that. She likes things colourful and you better know it. When you feel yourself going to a dark place (and you prefer not to be there, because sometimes you just have to be in a dark place… I feel ya), go to her happy place and get your shot of rainbow love. Dark soul exorcism.

IG_studiomucci

@The_Mari__McQueen

Shemari K. Banks knows style and is not afraid to show you. Follow him at his blog Maison de vêtements.

IG_marimcqueen

@WomansTouchApparel

They are in your face and does fashion still come in a different colour than activism? I’m all for it, though I haven’t seen much of it in the street, but one thing is for sure: they slay.  It’s almost my birthday, so someone get me that trench.

IG_womanstouch

CULTURE / Discovering culture, confetti and vintage

@TheYoungEmpire

They put young black talent in the spotlight. Be it business, politics, entertainment, sport or fashion, or make that ‘slashes’, because some of these talents crossover into multihyphen career directions. They nail it everytime. Very inspiring and finger on the pulse.

IG_theyoungempire

 

@The_Confetti_Project

“Dousing amazing humans with confetti + exploring what they celebrate” It’s all there in their bio. What’s not to love? (They should probably meet the woman behind Studio Mucci. Just a thought.)

IG_confettiproject

@mcdamnright

This guy is trying to Save the Sixties (and doing an amazing job btw) and calls himself a ‘mid-century purist’. Check out his work on the Save the Sixties site and see how you can contribute to the project.

IG_mcdamnright

 

 

PHOTOGRAPHY / The Imagineers

@sezyilmaz

IG_sezgin

@Othmanoua

I include this ‘Belgian-Moroccan Dreamer’ because I’ve been a fan of his pictures for a while now. Mainly because my beloved Brussels is usually in the frame, but Othman travels around and seems to snap the world in all his glory.

IG_othmanoua

@kaetscheparis

She travels around and you can come with her in the strange Alice in Wonderland that this dimension is. For more of her colourful personality, go to her Tumblr account.

IG_kaetsche

Have something to add? An Instagram account or website to check out? Leave your tip in the comments!

Like what you read? Don’t forget to check out 21 INSTAGRAMMERS TO FOLLOW | MY INSTALIST. And/or subscribe to our newsletter or follow Reckless Animals on Facebook!

 

 

Writing For Freedom | #FreeRaif

Amnesty International’s letter writing marathon has already been a huge success. The 19th of December Amnesty announced that already over 21,548 letters were written for freedom in Flanders alone.

We are proud to say we are two of those letter writers.

Our attention was drawn by Raif Badawi or actually by the warm, hopeful message his wife, Ensaf Haidar, sent out:

I fled along with our three children out of Saudi Arabia. We arrived via Cairo and Beirut into Canada. Here we continue to live and try to lead a normal life, but we are waiting for Raif.”

Raif Badawi

In May this year Raif was sentenced to 10 years in prison, a fine of 300,000 dollars and 1,000 lashes. 

He was also banned from travelling for at least 10 years and is not allowed to ever work as a journalist again.

Why? Because he is the founder of Free Saudi Liberals, an online critical forum for political and social debate.

He was charged for insulting Islam through electronic channels, even though he only encouraged peaceful discussion. They also tried to charge him for apostasy, which would mean the death sentence.

Amnesty labeled him a prisoner of conscience, because the government was only detaining him for exercising his freedom of expression (a basic right) in a peaceful and civilized manner.

Even in Saudi Arabia where state repression is rife, it is beyond the pale to seek the death penalty for an activist whose only ‘crime’ was to enable social debate online”.  – Amnesty International

Human Rights Watch asked for the charges to be dropped immediately, “The charges against him, based solely on Badawi’s involvement in setting up a website for peaceful discussion about religion and religious figures, violate his right to freedom of expression”.

And he’s not the only one. He’s one of the many activists in Saudi Arabia who are being prosecuted for expressing their opinions. Most of them also use blogs, Facebook and/or Twitter to spread their message, making them social media activists. Authorities are aware of this and are carrying out a ruthless campaign to silence them. Their measures are brutal. They don’t shy away from physical punishment, severe prison sentences and other penalties.

Amnesty International does what it can to stand by these activists and to stand by Raif. One of their shocking campaign images went viral and got our attention. We hope it didn’t just wake us up, but others as well.

B4Ldu-KCIAEc9Df

We, the Reckless Animals team, may not have a political blog. We’re just a lifestyle site, but we do try to put creative people who are doing amazing things in the spotlight. Raif is definitely one of those people, as is his wife. The thought that we would have to answer for what we write, is beyond us. Being imprisoned for expressing your opinion, is unthinkable. We sometimes forget that it’s a privilege to be able to blog and to be able to say what you want in the way you want to.

That’s why we hope our readers and maybe other blogs as well, will take the time to consider this and will also write a letter for Raif or for any of the other artists, writers and activists who are imprisoned for sharing their thoughts and ideology. Because it undermines the power of the people, the power of the Internet and it’s an assault on the human intellect. Having an opinion, having a voice, is what makes us people. Being able to use that voice, to express that opinion, is what makes us free. Nobody should be allowed to shame us for it.

If you haven’t written a letter yet, you can still do this until the 31st of December through the Amnesty International website or click here for a shortcut.

W4R-Main-news-story-banner-620x310

You can also send a tweet to Raif or a message to Ensaf, his wife.

https://www.aivl.be/doe-mee
http://www.amnesty.org/

The Slap

Everybody remembers the beautiful, but oh so fake, kiss-a-‘random’-stranger video that went viral a couple of months ago. This is not a sequel. No, this is more of a cynical, turned slapstick, parody with a more sincere edge to it. This is people slapping each other in the face. Which is totally different. And painful in a more physical rather than emotionally awkward way. Because let’s face it, you more often want to hit a random stranger than kiss one. (Peace and love to all of you people out there by the way…)

So who do we have to thank for this abundance of slapping? That would be Max Landis. Who you should definately follow on his YouTube channel: Uptomyknees, because sometimes he has stuff to say about “Superman and superheroes and shit” and he posts some nice material like I featured in this blog post.

How did he get to making this video? In the description box beneath the behind-the-scene footage on YouTube he explains:

Several months ago, I discovered a white studio space on the edge of Los Angeles. The idea occured to me instantly to shoot something there, but what? A sequel to my minorly viral series of Superman videos? A music video? The blank white space stretched out before me and I clutched my beer and squinted my eyes and found myself thinking of something that felt unbelievably obvious: I should get my friends to hit each other in the face.

So he got his friends and acquaintances (some of whom are models and actors) to consensually hit each other. And yes, that is Haley Joel Osment in the movie. Their reactions are priceless. Watch how they direct each other. “So you go first…” The awkward violence is the cutest! And the gasps and giggles and expressions of disbelief make the video so much more real, spontaneous and relatable, because seriously what would you do? How would you react? Slap a friend nearby if you’re not sure.

So what was his theory behind the film?

The theory was: A slap, robbed of its violating context, is more intimate than a kiss.

True, I guess. How badly do you have to trust someone to let this person knowingly hit you. Though I still prefer lips over fists.

You can see behind the scene footage beneath and read more of his comments and his philosophy in the description box. Enjoy!

#DefineBeauty – Nowness takes a look at the definition of beauty

With #Define Beauty Nowness takes a look at the different definitions artists give to beauty and reminds me why this is one of my favourite websites. During 5 weeks, Nowness will release a new film every week on their blog. In this serie of 5 short movies, film makers reflect on beauty and beauty ideals, perfection and imperfection, and what makes it all real to them.

Director Saam Farahmand was granted the honour to kick off the series. He took this chance to take on the body hair debate with his movie: Les Fleurs, in which he lets a naked woman gradually transform from the hairless ideal image society has of a naked body to a more natural state.

 

 

Part 2 of the #DefineBeauty series took on the prejudice that falls upon plastic surgery and other forms of body enhancement. Director Clara Cullen sees plastic surgery as a form of art, which inspired the title of her short movie: Beauty Is A Form Of Genius. She found inspiration for her film in her home town of Buenos Aires. The women in her film all depict the Argentinian beauty prototype. For the story of her film she teamed up with novelist Maxine Swann. They constructed a film based on four stories that combines motives that vary from vanity to insecurity. You can click on the link below to watch the movie in HD.

Nowness – Beauty Is a Form of Genius

 

Don’t forget to check out the next part of the #DefineBeauty series, A Maximum Illusion: Creme Caramel, that will be launched on Nowness.com May 20th.

 

 

Borderland

Let a couple of NPR reporters take you on a roadtrip along the U.S.-Mexico border. A confronting reality check. A fascinating project that takes you into the life stories of the people who experienced The Wall or live by The Fence. Fence or wall, what do you think?

borderland

Autoportraits on LSD

If you have accessed a social media platform the past week than you probably have already seen the following gallery. So this post is for everyone who has missed the beautiful but nevertheless disturbing drawings of an Imgur member and his/her artistic friend.

They decided to do a little experiment with LSD. One of them took on the challenge of making autoportraits of herself while under the influence of the drug whilst the other monitored the developments. Every so many minutes/hours the illustrator was asked to make a drawing of herself. She obviously had access to a box full of colourful pencils and she was not afraid to indulge, which lead to beautiful quotes like: “Here you go. I’m violet.” and the more obvious: “That was a good idea, buying coloured pencils.”  (Fore more information, check http://imgur.com/a/ZKhFa#zV5Hq9q)

The idea is not completely new. They may have been inspired by an earlier test conducted by the US government in the late 1950’s (in presence of a doctor). Although this test happened a long time ago, the results of the experiment are just as impressive and detailed, perhaps even more so… “Patient tries to climb into activity box, and is generally agitated – responds slowly to the suggestion he might like to draw some more.” (For more details, check: http://www.boreme.com/posting.php?id=934&page=1)

Another artist who likes his hand to be guided by all kinds of narcotics is Bryan Lewis Saunders who published a whole series entitled “Autoportraits sous drogues”. “After experiencing drastic changes in my environment, I looked for other experiences that might profoundly affect my perception of the self.  So I devised another experiment where everyday I took a different drug and drew myself under the influence.” The experiment did appear to have some side-effects. The artist now works a little more cautious. “Within weeks I became lethargic and suffered mild brain damage. I am still conducting this experiment but over greater lapses of time. I only take drugs that are given to me.”

(Source: http://www.atypique.co/autoportraits-sous-lsd/)

John Koenig’s “The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows”

Sometimes you are just dumbfounded by all the great and amazing things around you. You can’t describe them, they render you speechless. And sometimes we take them for granted, we get so nujmb by all the beauty and all the emotion, you stop noticing them.

Freelance graphic designer and word lover John Koenig started a peculiar blog project in which he attempts to find words and definitions that can still capture those almost undefinable moods and twilight emotions that give us goosebumps or get us wondering. The blog is called The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows and Koenig describes it as “A compendium of the aches, demons, vibes, joys and urges that roam the wilderness of the psychological interior. The author’s mission is to harpoon, bag and tag wild sorrows, then release them gently back into the subconscious.” in the information section of his tumblr account.

Where English fails, he goes over the language borders and hunts down the most foreign of words, phrases, character formations and the most curious of definitions.

Watch his poetic video about “Sonder” and let Koenig amaze you in a way no other dictionary can.