The Path of Least Resistance: The Secret Chinese Tea House

Have you ever noticed what happens when you feel inspired? It’s wonderful isn’t it? The adventures you go on, the things you discover, the people you meet.

I encourage you to become aware of the beautiful things that happen and unfold in your life when you’re in a place of joy, inspiration, and happiness. When you act out of those feelings, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to see the beauty around you.

One cloudy-rainy day my husband and I went on an adventure to the Marble House Mansion in Newport, Rhode Island. This seemingly uneventful day turned into the most beautiful adventure. We discovered a beautiful historic Chinese Tea House next to the Ocean that we had no idea existed. We’d never heard of it and it still feels like the best kept secret of the area.

It’s beautiful what you’ll discover when you’re curious and willing to step out into the world, even when it doesn’t seem like it’ll be awesome.

I encourage you. When you’re in that good place, seek what is calling you, what you’re curious about, and I am certain you’ll be excited to see what you find.

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stay curious my friends.

xo!

P.S. If you’re in Rhode Island, here is the address to the Tea House:

596 Bellevue Ave. Newport, RI. 02840

On Graduating: A Master’s From Brown University.

It happened…

I graduated from Brown!

These past two years in graduate school have been incredibly beautiful, painful, yet fulfilling.

To be completely honest with you, there were days where I didn’t think I would make it. There were some tough days that felt like graduating wasn’t possible. It wasn’t the course work in grad school that was the toughest, it was finding the time to do the things that made me feel like myself. It was reminding myself that I still had friends rooting for me. It was feeling the Impostor Syndrome and wondering what a girl like me was doing at an Ivy league. It took me some time to get over a lot of my insecurities. I later realized that I am so capable, and Brown was such a beautiful place with wonderfully supportive faculty and staff. A lot (ALL) of the insecurities I faced were of my own creation.

I really can’t thank you enough for going through this grad school experience with me. I feel indebted to you and all my loved ones for sticking through me as I was able to graduate!

I have more exciting news — I’m currently writing my first book! Stay tuned and subscribe to the blog as you’ll be the first to hear deets. I am pouring my heart into my first book and sharing so much of who I am and struggles I’ve gone through. I can’t wait for you to get it!

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So much love,
Olivia

P.S. If you’ve been considering graduate school or applying to Brown, don’t hesitate to reach out and email me! I’d love to chat with ya.

PROVIDENCE POLAROID PROJECT *Interview with Creators Brandon & Devan*

Providence has become known to host many pop-ups events. The first pop-up in this series, which I’ll share with you today, is the PVD Polaroid Project.

In 2014, I had the pleasure of interviewing and photographing Brandon and Devan the masterminds behind the PVD Polaroid Project. The exhibition came and went, but it was a rad project nonetheless. The advice they shared is timeless!

I introduce to you all, Brandon and Devan….

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tell us about the PVD Polaroid Project?

Providence Polaroid Project creates analog experiences in a digital world. It’s a space where people can digitally disconnect and capture instant photos of the faces and spaces of Providence.

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how did you decide to start PVD Polaroid Project?

Analog photography forces a higher level of accountability. It asks people
to slow down and really think about what they are doing — you’ve only got
as many shots as what’s left in your pack of film. We thought that was an
important and unique experience for people living in a digital age to have.

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how you did you come up with the name PVD Polaroid Project?

It just made sense. So much sense, that it’s not original at all. The owner of our space had launched a project just a year before called the Providence Portrait Project. We didn’t know any of this when we submitted our grant—we know now.

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tell us about how your process at the PVD Polaroid Project.

we teach our customers how to use a 1971 Polaroid Big Shot and add their portrait to our gallery.  It’s a lot of fun.

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how would you describe your fashion style?

American-made thrift.

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 what inspires you?

Providence is such an interesting city with so many cool things going on. Just walking down the street and seeing what people are doing and creating, inspires and motivates us to be a part of it all and contribute to the Creative Capital.

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who in the photography field inspires you the most?

Winogrand for street photography and Warhol for instant portraits.
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where are you from and where do you live now?

We are from Rhode Island and live in Providence… the west side.

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why did you decide to stay in providence and open PVD Polaroid
Project here?

We chose to move back to Rhode Island for Providence. It’s a cool city
and it’s home—we are lucky for that. We are proud to contribute a small
amount of positivity to the city that gave us the opportunity to install this
project.

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describe Providence in a few words.

Hip.

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Right before bed, that’s when the best ideas come. If they are still good in the morning—we go with them.

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what is one thing you can’t leave your house without?

A copy of “Song of Myself” by Walt Whitman

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when do you feel your best?

Lately, when working in the camera shop. Generally, when in a state of creativity.

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what is the best place you’ve ever traveled to?

Black Rock City. It’s a trip to look at it on Google Earth—we like it there.

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favorite quote.

“The Universe is Self-Organizing.”

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What is the best piece of advice anyone has given you?

Be comfortable in the silence.

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any words of advice would you give to our readers wanting to start a business or pursue art?

Jump and the net will appear. People will tell you to have a plan—you don’t need a plan, you need an outline. Just decide what to do and go do it. If you enjoy the work, you’ll be good at it. If you don’t enjoy the work, why do it in the first place?

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Thank you so much to Brandon and Devan for dropping some serious wisdom!

interview + photography by Olivia

SNOWED IN

I’m from a tropical country in South America, so I would say by nature I am programmed to abhor the snow and cold weather.

I have spent countless hours complaining about the weather. And I don’t know, it just kind of becomes something to talk about. This year, however, I’ve made it a point to be real with myself and with others and cut-the-crap. I’ve been thinking about what a waste of time it is to complain about something as uncontrollable as the weather.

The other night it started to snow and my natural reaction would be to get annoyed and complain about how cold it is and how I’ll have to clean off my car; two very true things. Instead, I decided to bundle up and go outside.

I realized that when it snows at night it’s incredibly peaceful. I realized that the sky gets a glowy-gray hue. I realized how satisfying it is to be the first to leave a footprint in the snow. I realized that this is where I live and I should start enjoying it – as it will snow whether I want it or not.

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We truly forget how fragile and short life is. We lose ourselves and forget how amazing the processes of physics and science happening around us are. I believe it’s important to ignite that child-like curiosity in order to give ourselves a sense of wonder and adventure.

To being more adventurous,
Olivia

// photography by Olivia //

THE HOLIDAY CHARM

It’s a bit unreal that it’s Christmas eve and the New Year is only a few short days away! How fast a year can go by!

As time goes on, this holidays takes on different meaning for me. I appreciate the simplicity of having a cup of warm coffee listening to music and the overall good feelings of the holidays. I love seeing Providence transform into a charming little city with red and green decorations with twinkling lights everywhere. I love how quiet the city gets on holidays and I love having a moment with friends and family to enjoy and appreciate each other’s company.

I asked some of our readers to share with us what they were looking forward to these holidays. If you’d like to share with us what you love about this holiday season and what you’re looking forward to, we’d love to hear it!

“I am looking forward to be with my family and enjoying good food.” -Marie

 

“Playing a vicious game of Settler’s of Catan with my whole family on the evening of Christmas Day! Setting in for a long winter’s nap after a glorious retail rush at Pickwick’s Mercantile.” -Thistle

 

“Watching It’s a Beautiful Life with my parents.” -Maria

 

“Spending time with my nearest and dearest.” -Tori

 

“I am looking forward to seeing family that I don’t see very often and having a nice time drinking and laughing.” -Anabell

 

“we’re looking forward to not working. for once.” –Ladies at M I N T

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All the best to you and yours

xx,
Olivia

// photography by Olivia //