Monday, August 24, 2015

Look, We Made a Podcast! Cartoon Talk Episode 1

I'm now co-hosting a podcast about animation with Mario and our friend Justin!

Mario and Justin have been podcasting for a few years now on their show (to be named later), along with their friends Matt and Allison. Cartoon Talk is joining the TBNL network as a spinoff project. I'm excited to share this with y'all because I'm planning to write more about film and television during the upcoming year.

Check out our pilot episode HERE on the TBNL website. You can also download it on iTunes via the TBNL feed.

For episode one, Mario and I discuss the first three episodes of Rick and Morty season two (start at 3:45) and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (start at 17:00). Tangents include:

  • our awful Morty impressions
  • a smackdown on Snow White's non-existent personality
  • Mario's favorite rejected dwarf names

Come hang out with us!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

3 Outfits for an NYC Summer (featuring Warby Parker)

Banks in Ginger Crystal (2)

Too often, particularly during the school year, life trucks along faster than I can blog or scribble it down. So when Warby Parker asked me to talk about the highlights of my summer AND play around with their sunglasses for their #seesummerbetter campaign, it was as if the universe sent me a motivator (read: a kick in the butt) to just post something already. And I do have a lot to share, so let's hit it.

Here are three things I've done this summer, and styling ideas for each!


Outfit #1: The Intern

(feat. The Halford in Polished Gold)

The Halford in Polished Gold
The Halford in Polished Gold

For the first time since arriving at Fordham, I'm spending the summer in New York City. My dog days are devoted to two jobs: On campus, I'm a Summer Conference Assistant for the Office of Residential Life, and in Manhattan, I'm an Arts Administration Intern at the Shakespeare Society. That's a Vanessa summer for you; not much of a break, is it? 

I'm not an aviators person, but I do enjoy the no-nonsense, take-charge facade they bestowjust the sort of energy I need when I'm heading into Manhattan. Now if I only had a pair of Wonder Woman cuff bracelets...

My internship has been, in a word, great. The Shakespeare Society is a nonprofit organization that produces panels, workshops, talkbacks, educational programs, and anything that'll keep up love for the Bard in New York City. We're currently getting ready for our season, so now's a great time to join! (Shameless plug.) Seriously, the student/teacher/faculty/theatre artist discount is a great deal.

Oh, and I got to have a conversation with Helen Mirren and Sir Christopher Plummer at our summer gala last month! But that's a story for another blog post. Just know that Christopher Plummer, man of my mother's dreams, touched me on the arm affectionately. Eeee

The Halford in Polished Gold


Outfit #2: A Summer Date at the Museum of Natural History and the Bronx Zoo

(feat. The Piper in Woodland Tortoise)

The Piper in Woodland Tortoise
The Piper in Woodland Tortoise

Even between my two gigs, I've found some time to run around the city with my boyfriend and friends. Mario came up a few weekends ago, and we ticked off two classic NYC bucket list items.

First we went to the American Museum of Natural History, but eventually we found ourselves wishing we were at a zoo, seeing live animals, instead of the stuffed ones in the museum's somewhat old display cases. So we came back to Fordham and walked to the Bronx Zoo, which ended up being the highlight of our weekend. Even though it's less than a fifteen-minute walk from Fordham, I'd actually never visited before.

The Piper in Woodland Tortoise The Piper in Woodland Tortoise
The Piper in Woodland Tortoise

My favorite exhibit? The gorillas, by far. Their eyes move so differently compared to the other animals'; they're much more deliberate and aware. I'll have to post photos soon because I got a shot of a particularly existential-looking gorilla...

For summer day trips, I usually wear long dresses and skirts. They're light, breezy, and essentially blankets for your thighs when you'd rather not be aware of your lower body. I like retro cat-eyes for longer silhouettes like this.


Outfit #3: Beachin' and Cruisin'

(feat. The Banks in Ginger Crystal)

Banks in Ginger Crystal (1)

Okay, okay, I'm cheating a bit here because cruising the Bahamas is not an NYC activity. I wore this identical outfit (sans the fab pair of Warby Parker sunglasses) earlier this month during my family's first cruise. We took Royal Caribbean's Grandeur of the Seas, along with 40 of our Filipino family friends... which sounds like the set-up to a punchline.

Honestly I don't think I would've had as much as fun as I did if we hadn't been surrounded by a jovial swarm of Filipinos. I grew up with all of them, and a lot of their childrennow teenagers and young adultswere my best friends growing up. It was especially nice to have a three-course dinner with those guys every night.

We sang karaoke, bonded with our waiters, and you can bet our parents line-danced to everything from DJs to live bands. At one point, my mother thought she was getting drunk off three sips of her Mudslide. (Now I understand exactly where I get my alcohol intolerance from...)

And when we actually arrived on the island, we accidentally broke into the private pool and waterpark area of a famous Bahamanian resort. All 44 of us.

It was definitely an experience.

Banks in Ginger Crystal (3)

The Banks in Ginger Crystal might be my favorite pair of sunglasses from Warby Parker's summer stock, just because I've never owned anything like them. The thick, gel-like frames are pretty beautiful.


And that's how I #seesummerbetter! Check out the Summer 2015 Collection from Warby Parker here

I'm planning a few more posts for the rest of the summer, so stay tuned! 

PS. A big thanks to my Fordham summer conference co-workers, Anna and Anja, for running around Rose Hill campus with me to take these pics, in 90 degree weather to boot. You ladies rock.

Friday, July 17, 2015

#NYCBigBold VoxBox Review: Big Bold & Precise Felt Tip Liner and Angel Lash Mascara

Earlier this summer, Influenster sent me a VoxBox with two new eye makeup products from NYC New York Color. Before I begin, a disclaimer:

I am no makeup connoisseur.

This is where I stand when it comes to shopping for beauty items. I use as a general discernment tool whenever I'm in the market for a new product, and most of my purchases are from CVS, Walgreens, and the like. (As a college student, I'm putting off more high-end makeup purchase for when I'm a real adult with a steady income.) My daily routine is literally moisturizer, chapstick, and a series of prescription creams from my dermatologist.

In short, I'm happy with reliable drugstore makeup, having never tried much else, so I'm not going to wax on about these new products. This review will get straight to the point. Call it a micro-review, if you will!

The bad // NYC Big Bold & Precise Felt Tip Liner

Eyeliner is one product I've actually had a long history with. I've been applying pretty decent cateyes on my lids ever since eighth grade, when I started wearing eyeliner for plays and musicals. Liquid liner is my favorite to apply, so I really wanted to like this.

The main things I look for in liquid liner are opacity, easy transfer, and control. But it took more than a few strokes to get this on my lids, and when I did manage to apply it, I found the formula a bit watery and not very black. The felt tip somehow manages to make both straight lines and cat eyes awkward to apply. 

V'S VERDICT: I'll stick with my reliable (if imperfect) Revlon Colorstay liquid liner!

The good // NYC Big Bold Angel Lash Mascara

This comes in a pretty purple tube that promises voluminous lashes. Again, I was excited because that's precisely what I look for in mascaras! 

I was pleasantly surprised by this mascara. Though I admit I've never tried a mascara I didn't like, there was something I really enjoyed about the way this feels when applied. Perhaps it's the lush brush tip. It feels like it distributes the mascara pretty evenly, no clumps. I thought my lashes looked better than they've looked in the past two years of using my Maybelline mascara. 

Keep in mind that my eyelashes are quite light, and I saw some reviews written by thicker- and longer-lashed ladies who found that this mascara weighs down their lashes to point that they won't hold a curl. But if your lashes are already pretty voluminous, a voluminizing mascara like this isn't appropriate for you in the first place!

V'S VERDICT:  This is the first tube of mascara that actually makes me want to use it up, and it only costs a little more than four bucks. I'm sold.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Happy Superbowl / Selfie Sunday

"outfit" of the day: head wrap, glasses, tank top, stone-cold
gaze with which to pierce the souls of mine enemies

what I lack photogenically, I make up for by staring into your soul

The semester's off to a slightly chaotic start, hence the lack of updates. I'm actually recycling this post from one on my tumblr....which was recycled from instagram. Yikes. I'm a sham.

I only have three updates/stories from January, but they're all pretty great.

1. Mario transferred to Rutgers this semester. It stinks having to transition to a new school partway through college, but the upside is that we can visit each other more. He slept over last weekend, actually. Saturday was a bit stressful because our day revolved around trying to rush Constellations, the Broadway play currently starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Ruth Wilson. We failed not once, but TWICE. A lot of it had to do with mistakes on my part, but Mario was extremely patient. (I'm a lucky gal, truly.) And in the end, everything worked out! We were standing outside of the theatre after our second rush attempt--this time for the evening show--when suddenly the house manager slipped through the stage door and gestured for me and Mario to come over. He then asked us to fill in for two student ushers who had dropped out at the last minute. In an even SWEETER twist of fate, right before the show started, the manager told us that we didn't have to sit on the ushers' stools because two of their "emergency seats" in the center orchestra never got filled! This was for a sold-out evening show, too. At this rate, Mario and I have a cool story from each of the two Broadway shows we've ever seen together. (The other story: We rushed Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf in 2013 for Mario's birthday, and partway through the show, we realized we were sitting in the same row as Tom Hanks.)

2. I'm currently two weeks into rehearsal for Fordham's production of RENT, which opens the last weekend of February. I'm playing Joanne. It's really not a big deal, I'm really not that excited, I've only been belting the RENT soundtrack in the shower since, what, the age of 14?

3. Despite being a semester behind the other interns, I've been accepted as a Video Engineer Intern at WFUV, a public radio station that happens to broadcast directly from Fordham's campus. In other words, I get to help film and edit videos of live performances by bands and artists who come to WFUV for interviews. Really legitimate artists, too. My roommates especially know how stressed I was about having two days off a week, but no internship to fill them with, so this was a nice surprise. It's perfect because I really want to learn more about photography, videography, and the editing process for both.

Annnnnd that's all I've got for now. New blog post coming up soon! (I hope)