30 December 2015

To create is to destroy

The head scarf thing with sequins that I'm wearing is handmade. I started making it months ago and recently completed it. It turned out better than I expected because it was just my mother's ruined headscarf and she might have told me to give up on it. 

I bought a wreck this journal - the first page says to create is to destroy and this is the most motivating thing I've read in a long long time.

Though it took me a minute to fully understand what this sentence was proposing. Not just destruction but beautiful destruction. The kind of destruction that build creative human beings.

 I see people like me who surround themselves with imagination and books and paint and find homes in things that are not buildings. And then I see others telling me and people like me to go back to the real world but we still are in the real world, the creative minds aren't in the space or out of the planet, we live here too, we breathe the same air, we just have different visions. It feels more like an accusation to me when someone tells me to come back to the reality. I'm in the reality, if I draw stuff sometimes doesn't mean I live in my sketchbook pages.

Creating stuff means a lot to me. It makes me feel powerful, like a person who can do things, who can make progress, who can create a little thing of beauty. And for me, artsy creations are a way to destroy the doubts of artists in the society made up of people with money and or imaginary money or wanted money or everything that includes money, to be sure of their abilities and everything they can do. Create to destroy doubts & create to survive.

Let's create and destroy. And find beauty in it.

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28 December 2015

What have you done to me, 2015?

It's almost 2016 and 2015 will soon be a history, people will remember as it went for them. Good, bad, worse, THE WORST or maybe magical. I woke up today and did a dramatic realization in my mind that how many things have changed this year so far: 
I moved to a town that I never liked and found the freedom and happiness I craved for too long. I cut my hair too short that my amma nearly skipped a few heart beats. I turned my instagram into a glorious little thing. I failed my goodreads challenge but I read more books than the previous year.
I adopted a cactus. I bought a wreck this journal and got it in a mail today (YAYOMGYAY)

And then, I realized, 2015 had been a true enemy, the kind of enemy you don't mind to have. An enemy that destroys gracefully and leaves you with an awe. This is my relationship with an almost gone year. 

Also, I will always remember 2015as the year that turned me into a "grow up" person since I turned 18 this year and got a real job for a week and travelled a lot that my 2013 year self could die of surprise and shock. I felt older, maybe more than 18, at some points. This year, I felt stronger and weaker at the same time, so I can say that this year made me feel a human who has responsibilities and abilities and someone who can make mistakes and live with them. 

So, looking back at 2015, it brought a lot of beautiful mail packages and heart breaks and bad habits and good intentions and a lot of struggle and a heck lot progress.

-I survived the 7 months with this song called Blank Space which I'm sure the best thing Taylor Swift did to me, 200% sure actually.

-Create was my word for 2015 and I actually nailed it, I've created more stuff and journl pages than I have done. I also turned my backpack into a little tumblr blog (its drawing is attached on the page)

How was your 2015?

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25 December 2015

Are you unsuccessful?

This title might be too attractive, but it might be worth being unsuccessful.

It all started when I tried hard to be successful, it went great, until it didn't. 

I grew up observing all the successful people and tried to be motivated. But I realized I wasn't really motivated, it was fun seeing them grow and be more successful and all, but it was just them, growing even better and I was just, I don't know, just watching them.

And after all those years of experimenting with successes and not-successes, I realized I don't get what motivation actually is when it comes to watching nd learning from famous successful people. I mean, it's amazing to hear their stories and struggles and things they've been through. It's all cool. But. Seeing others successful isn't always motivating, it's envious too. It was awful to admit it publically first, but it is no more. Because it doesn't matter anymore.

What I find motivating is being unsuccessful attempts at things. What it means to me is this: At least you tried. At least you wanted to do it, you tried your best, you tried to make progress, you tried to do something, you tried to change something, you tried, at least you tried, you are still trying. This means more than anything to me. 

This is what unsuccessful people/things/project look like to me. A symbol of someone's trying and falling really down, maybe they'll try it again and again and again and they'll rise. It only takes a few more attempts and a few drops of bravery. It excites me to see all the unsuccessful attempts to be something. Because this is I'm right now, a work in progress, failing and trying, failing and trying. Like an incomplete building, maybe a little wrecked too, maybe I don't look as good as I am designed to be. A failure of an architect. But I hope I build myself according to the best design in my head, it will take time and more courage and more wreckage but I hope it will be worth it.

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22 December 2015

Johnny Depp's photos might do something good to the world

I spent hours on internet to find + edit Johnny Depp's rare images (to me, at least)  The beautiful, beautiful, beautiful Johnny Depp. Each bone perfectly carved. I've already seen some of his movies 1000 times, I'm making a list of all of his old movies to watch, to see him in his youth, all of his beautifully moving atoms on the screen.

And in between doing all that, I realized that internet is making me do weird stuff with my life. Im under my balnket, my toes are freezing, I'm collecting photographs of a man who's real old now, planning to publish it on my blog and not planning to do something productive with my life. But then I relized, it is productive. The world would get to see his beautiful face wrapped round my doodles and edits and my fancy words and some of you might whisper how good this is doing to you, watching his face. Because I can guarantee that his face is inspiring, to make you do great stuff. 

I'll leave you with it.

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15 December 2015

Life of a bloggurl

Waking up in the morning/afternoon/evening/basically-whenever-I-wake-up, I check my emails first. It's a ritual since the bloggurl life started. And it's one of those golden unwritten rules: Never. Not. Check. Your. Emails.

Things change when you have a blog. It's like living two lives, in a good way, not a secret psychotic killer in disguise way. I like it more than the lives inside my head (this comes from fandoms of tv shows & a lot of reading) because it's almost real. The friends that come with it, the stuff that you sometimes get & the attention and appreciation that comes your way. 

So, from checking emails, going gaga over topics you want to blog about, making blog planners, meeting new bloggers through emails and chats, buying new products cos you saw it on a blog OR YOU SIMPLY WANNA BLOG ABOUT IT, everything in between. I want that. I want to hear from you about the life of a bloggurl YOU are living. This is why I have decided to make it the topic for the new issue of Bloglanders.
Write about it, maybe draw, or just babble about your bloggurl life and send it to me. I'll pile everything in our little blog zine. If you haven't checked, here are the previous 2 zine issues.

Can't wait to see what y'all come up with, my creative bloggurls!
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11 December 2015

Art Journal: The Feels Edition

I've finally started doing my art journal. But this time, it's themed. I'm more into writing my life stories through my artwork rather than just let them live inside my head. It's really good for my head (because it's tangled and irritating sometimes) And these pages are for all the things that made me feel something in these past days. Karachi, Taylor Swift and a very basic loser crush.

Karachi City
I am hopelessly in love with Karachi, the city holds my heart, along with all the flaws and blood this city has on itself. The reckless & most important kid of Pakistan, Karachi it is. Shehre Yaran: the city of friend/lover/someone-you-love, as I call it because it literally it is. City of everyone & everything I love.

Wildest Dreams - Taylor Swift
This song is my newest obsession. Taylor has a way of making me feel good about my terrible life decisions, this is why our (one sided) bond is growing stronger & stronger by each passing album she releases. Thank you v much.

I've never realized that water painting can be so addictive. It really is. I can't stop painting everywhere, on my journal and blank pages and used old notebooks and on newspaper. Also, I'm running out of  black paint because it is my favorite color and I cover everything with black. It makes things look good.

Basic Crush Feels
I found a cute human being, capable of being the basic loser, who will do no good to me and I'll probably end up writing a poem as a good bye without him ever knowing so yes, hi boy you'll never know I liked you once so carry on with your life.

And the rest of my art journal, I don't know what I'm doing, but at least I pretend to know what I'm doing with my creativity so good luck to me with it. 

Do you keep an art journal?

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7 December 2015

Instagram once ruined me emotionally

I still remember the time I fell in love with instagram: the time I had no smart device and I had 0 idea how apps worked. I just knew instagram was a pretty thing and people loved it, my favorite bloggers loved it and I had read good things about it. One of the biggest reason I bought a tablet was in hope to get introduced to instagram. Well I did and my account was really shitty in the start because I instagrammed everything I found pretty i.e socks, an orange, kids, flowers because WASN'T IT WHAT WE WERE SUPPOSED TO DO? But then I saw fancy instagram accounts and I was shocked because they were so pretty and my heart was broken. Obviously I couldn't take pretty photos. I was a kid and I had crappy camera. I left instagram, by this I mean I stopped using it for a while.

Then I came back. I started taking better photos and almost lived with it. I got a better camera (the kid upgraded from a tablet to an ipod) and my basic tumblr aesthetic helped. Then I started taking even better photos. Then even better. I became a serious instagrammer who took vvv pretty pictures. Until one day, I discovered there were even prettier instagram accounts.
I didn't leave. I worked even harder, people told me my pictures were pretty, creative and tumblry. It made me happy but it made me sad too. Because, I don't know I should have been happy, I didn't have SO many followers and slikes so I simply thought they were just ....... trying to make me happy because I spend too much time setting my photos? This, right there, is called self doubt. And guess what, this isn't even the worst part. The worst part is, numbers. The moment I started taking numbers seriously, very seriously, that it became toxic. 

And then, came a point that changed my life completely months ago. "Life changing" is a big word and I mean it here because instagram once ruined me emotionally and it was hard to get over the fact my pictures didn't get at least a 100 likes and I had less than 1000 followers in total because what's the point of running a little creative instagram account if people aren't obsessed with me? Right? 

It happened when I worked really hard on a picture and it got so many likes and people told me they love what I create and it brought me a lot of followers and happiness and I was so happy to see my little account growing and then it struck, it struck hard to realize that having many likes on a picture or more followers on my account didn't do a single benefit to me. I still was running out of cash, I still had to travel for hours to the city for basic things as shopping, my crush still didn't develop a crush on me back, my skin was still the shittiest, the sun outside was still mad at us for god knows why and I still didn't have a gorgeous life. 
So this is the simplest explanation of how numbers aren't going to do any good to me. I'd highly advice to you guys and myself to stay away from the madness instagram or any other social media account might bring to us. Stay safe on internet, don't hurt yourself emotionally. The numbers are both beautiful & poisonous at the same time. 

 BUT I STILL LOVE INSTAGRAM SO MUCH AND I AM STILL OBSESSED OKAY GUYS I AM JUST A VVV BASIC NORMAL HUMAN BEING WHO LIKES TAKING PHOTOS. God, I was shouting in my mind. I'm ohareeba on instagram if you want to have a look.

Are you an instagram lover?

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5 December 2015

Love Affair With December

It's December all around. Wicked, windy and wonderful. It's been my favorite  for years, for no particular reason. I was born in August, I don't celebrate Christmas, none of my crushes have birthdays in December. It's more like I woke up years ago and I decided to make it my favorite month and write about it. Quaid e Azam, the father of Pakistani nation was born on 25th December but I don't think this is my point. It's just that I like when it's cold outside and Decemeber is the nicest month which is cold and allows me to wear nice sweaters and jackets. Another point might be I heard Back To December by Taylor Swift back then, the time she still cried over famous boys (now it's famous boys' turn to cry over her, ta da) and my love for December grew because I love Taylor & I LOVED the song (yes in all capital letters). It was probably 2011 and I was still a baby.

Last year, we bought One Direction's cd on a midnight roadtrip and played Story Of My Life for more than once. I fell in love with the song, the night, the boys (1D obv) and well, December again. But the fact that the worst person paid for the cd still pisses me off.

And this year, I'm an independent bright woman (I like calling myself that) and I finally realized loving December is a metaphor for me. I fell in love with a cold thing, just like the past hearts I've loved. Cold things are my personal favorites, December, pop sicles and cold hearts. This is the December mystery.

What's your favorite month and WHY? Anyone else deeply and madly in love with December?
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20 November 2015

Depressed Skin

I have a terrible dry skin, the kind of skin that behaves like paper in morning. It feels like it is depressed forever. Sometimes I expect it to crumble but thank god it's just in my imagination. As it's cold and dry, it's killing my skin. So I have to coat it with every kind of lotion that can keep up with my skin and make it happy. I want to spend the winters without broken skin so I have to keep a good skin routine. 

Nivea Body Cream
This cream is vv good. But it's TOO thick. If I apply a thick layer of it on my skin, it might suffocate. So I mix this liquid body lotion with it so it blends perfectly and becomes as almost thin as my skin would require. This mixture feels nice and I'm almost proud of myself for finding a way to keep using this Nivea, because I trust Nivea for winters.

Johnson's Baby Lotion
My beauty standards are higher than yours, yes with a baby lotion. As I said my skin needs to be happy with something very light and moisturizing at the same, I had to go back to Johnson's. It's everything I need for my face. I have a horrible habit of covering my face with loads of lotion when I'm extremely happy or sad or anxious. Basically, my skin needs moisturization when my emotional level is unbalanced.

 Beewax Lipbalm
This is a vvv simple homeopathic beewax lip balm and THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IN MY LIFE. I can go out without money or my gadgets but not without this lipbalm. And it becomes 200% more important in cold season because my lips need it like my lungs need oxygen, this is how I feel their chemistry is. I have at least 3 extra lip balms in stock just in case. And it protects my lips like nothing else, it is why I have given up on Nivea lip chapsticks.

Remember to moisturize your skin at least 3 times a day. And as I have to make wudu and rub off everything from my face 5 times a day so I have to repeat the process everytime. Have a happy happy happy skin!

How do you keep your skin healthy?
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16 November 2015

A Gray Season

First ever outfit post of the season. And second hijabi outfit. The season currently here is the lost child of winter, confused about its identity. It's cold but not cold enough to make me put on my jacket, not even a nice sweater but it's all okay to layer myself in lots of cloth and make up that will match the winterish vibes. 

Gray reminds me of cold nights & my favorite month December. I know it's November but it's not long when it will be December and the year will be over so we can talk about it. 2016, HOW ARE YOU SO CLOSE?

 Also, I think it's the color for state of emotional unavailability which is my favorite part of human behavior sometimes. Most of the time. Yes. The part when a living human being can't handle emotions and everything goes plain. Not even white or black, a simple shade of gray. It feels so peaceful and destructively empty.

So grey & white & dark make up would be my top colors for cold days like a cold heart ft cold memories. A color not warm. Not warm. Just like the season. A shaded gray season.


The rings on my hand are the most essential part of my life now. I don't know how I ended up being obsessed with them after taking these two from my nanna's jewelery box but they're v important now.

What are your top winter colors/make up?

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14 November 2015

My favorite lines from books || the words I love

I'm an avid reader, if you follow me on instagram, books make more appearance on my gallery than my face or my coffee or anything else. I just love words, bitter words, sweet words, words with meanings or the ones that make absolute no sense, words are important. So are books. I might end up writing at least one book before I die.

These words typed below are random words/proper quotes/dialogs from my random reads. All of these are not from my favorite books but some of them are. I just liked them and I think they're woth remembering. So, I compiled them in this post. Gone Girl is my MOST favorite book because broken and unusual characaters are my personal favorites. Also, I recently fell in love with The Book Thief. 

I am overachieving at aimlessness, I am a type-A, alpha-girl lollygagger, the leader of a gang of heartbroken kids, running wild across this lonely strip of amusements, each of us smarting from the betrayals of a loved one.

I am a thornbush, bristling from the overattention of my parents, and he is a man of a million little fatherly stab wounds, and my thorns fit perfectly into them.
-Gone Girl || Gillian Flynn

It is so demanding to be born into a house full of women, where everyone loves you so overwhelmingly that they end up suffocating with their love; a house where you, as the only child, have to be more mature than all the adults around.... But the problem is that they want me to become everything they themselves couldn't accomplish in life..... As a result, I had to work my butt off to fulfill all their dreams at the same time.
-The Bastard Istanbul | Elif Shafak

Little bits of words from The Book Thief (I have highlighted many random lines on my book because I don't want to lose those tiny lines that made me feel something for a moment in the middle of the night when I was reading under my fairylights)

The depressing pea soup and Rudy's hunger finally drove them to thievery.

You can't eat books, sweetheart. 

She was saying goodbye and she didn't even know it.
(This broke my heart)

I have hated words and I have loved them, and I hope I have made them right.

She gave her a reason to write her own words, to see that words had also brought her to life.
"Don't punish yourself," she heard her say again, but there would be punishment and pain, and there would be happiness, too. That was writing.
(This is one of my main motivation for writing)
-The Book Thief | Markus Zusak

We felt the imprisonment of being a girl, the way it made your mind active and dreamy, and how you ended up knowing which colors went together. We knew that the girls were our twins, that we all existed in space like animals with identical skins, and that they knew everything about us though we couldn’t fathom them at all. We knew, finally, that the girls were really women in disguise, that they understood love and even death, and that our job was merely to create the noise that seemed to fascinate them.
-The Virgin Suicides | Jeffrey Eugenides

If you don't know what to do with an answer, don't ask the question.

The center of the universe was neither in the east nor in the west. It was where one surrendered to love. Somnetimes it was where one buried a loved one.
The Architect's Apprentice | Elif Shafak

Friends come in all different shapes and sizes. The important thing is not what we look like, but the role we play in our best friend’s life. Friends choose certain friends because that’s the kind of company they are looking for at that specific time, not because they’re the correct height, age, or have the right hair color.
If You Could See Me Now | Cecelia Ahern

What a treacherous thing to believe that a person is more than a person.

I always felt like you had to be important to have enemies.

If you don't imagine, nothing ever happens at all.
Paper Towns | John Green

Don't be like those people who believe in "positive thinking" and tell themselves that they're loved and strong and capable. You don't need to do that because you know it already. And when you doubt it — which happens, I think, quite often at this stage of evolution — do as I suggested. Instead of trying to prove that you're better than you think, just laugh. Laugh at your worries and insecurities. View your anxieties with humor. It will be difficult at first, but you'll gradually get used to it. Now go back and meet all those people who think you know everything. Convince yourself that they're right, because we all know everything, it's merely a question of believing.
The Witch Of Portbello | Paulo Coelho

What are your favorite lines/quotes from books?
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12 November 2015

The sky was so dark I had to draw the stars

A few days ago and I was outside sitting on a wall and I saw sky changing color again. Things turning dark look beautiful at first, just like the sky and then it gets dark. And then people get lost in its darkness. I blame the small amount of stars when I can't see things and need light, I need more stars on my bare sky. If the sky isn't lighting more of them, I'll just draw some on mine. I want to live under a sky full of stars.

The lovechild of moon & sun, it'd look like something that I drew above. Beautiful like moon & fierce like sun. Now that's something I wish I could read a book about, does anything this exist? I would love to read, an affair at space ft stars and blackholes.

 Those stars, they have stories about all of us, written on the skin of the sky. The most shiny star is telling about the girl who won the battle against herself. And that tiny glittery star tells about the tiny baby who just opened his eyes. And sometimes, if you spot a dim star on the far away on the edge of the sky, it's of a human being who just got his heart broken.

It's my second photo diary on blog. I doodle when I'm happy and I doodle a lot when I'm sad. This is the thing with drawing, it keeps you busy and saves you at time. The sky is my favorite thing. It's a big big big canvas, ready to be painted if only one knows a way how to touch it and color it the way it deserves. I do it in my head, a teal sky with a lot of stars. It'd look beautiful.

Do you have any theories about your sky?
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10 November 2015

Bloglanders Issue #2

GUYS. Second issue of Bloglanders zine is up. This month's topic was "My blog made me do it" so this issue has a collection of drawings, words and stories. I'm utterly excited that you all are going to read this, I've always been a magazine editor in my head, sipping coffee in my glorious office and reading my own mag. But, well, things right now are like I'm sitting on my bed with my laptop making drawings for my blog zine under my fairy lights and coffee which is almost cold. Step by step, building and living a life that I've always wanted is magical and exciting at the same time.


If you're having trouble reading, read it here.

I hope you enjoyed reading it. You can also submit your work/art/words for next month's issue. Next topic is "The life of a bloggurl", come up with something and shoot me an email.

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3 November 2015

The Architect's Apprentice || My new favorite thing on paper

Elif Shafak is my newly found love, all her books that I have read so far (3 in total) are my everything. Remember the last time I blogged about her book ? I was emotionally wrecked. The Architect's Apprentice almost hurt me emotionally, at points because Shafak's words are harsh, painful and beautiful at the same time, but it also taught me stuff which matters. Really matters.

The story is about an Anatolian boy Jahan, who firstly entered the city as a mahout with his elephant Chota, pretending to be an indian. Things change, he falls in love with Sultan's daughter Mihrimah, comes across the Royal Chief Architect Sinan and becomes his apprentice. It's Jahan's journey in Ottomen empire era and tells stories of the city of Istanbul, the battles they fought and the buildings they raised. It's beautiful, heart breaking and historically rich.

I should let you know that this book isn't everything perfect, the other reviews that I had read before pointed out to many plot holes and Jahan's character. But the point is, I felt the story, I explored the Istanbul again, this time back in 16th centuary. I've said it before that Istanbul and Karachi sound same to me and I wish I could get to read about Karachi the same way Shafak tells about Istanbul. Both of the cities are connected to the ocean and to my heart. 

There's a part where the Sultan Suleiman told Jahan to pray for the dead soliders of enemy army.
"This man who had, throughout the forty-six years of his rule, relentlessly fought one war after another; who had ordered his brightest Grand Vizier and perhaps his only best friend to be killed; who had watched his oldest son being strangled, cused notherson to die of sorrow and arranged for a third to be murdered far away in Iran; who had  made himself the strongest of all the Ottoman sultans - this man had just said, in a field of dandelions and death, that in the end there was no difference between the solider inside and the solider outside the enemy stronghold, the Christian and the Muslim, leaving Jahan with a riddle that he would not solve for many years to come.

This is the thing about power, it's ugly and the wonderful thing. Ottomen empire was no different than the Mughal empire, the politically ruined, busy in their own power, leaving all values behind and using Religion to make or destroy the peace of the states and building gloirous buildings for dead people. This is what I hate most in the history, magnificient buildings for  dead people and people, poor people, who were alive lived worse than the deads. 

I love how the book portrayed how things worked in the biggest and most glorious empire worked, long with its dark and unfair features or the secrets everyone knew and still didn't talk about it.

Also, Istanbul had caged Jahan. 
If it werent for the love of Mihrimah and his loyalty to Sinan, he would have abndoned this city of broken bricks and burned wood.

There are gypsies in the stories who came to save Jahan's life more than once, the gypsies who were portrayed as jinxed back in time became Jahan's anchor. I love that part. 

If you don't know what to do with the answer, don't ask the question. 
-The gypsy Cheif Balaban


Have you read any of her books?

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