Culture · Events I Attend · Inspiration · travel

MAY 1-3: Further Future

MAY 1-3

IMG_9634

My latest epic adventure was the Further Future Gathering, some might call it a “festival” but it was much more than that, it was an experience.  I have realized that I am part of a generation that loves bringing “unreal” environments and experiences to life, and it’s insane. Further Future was described to us as “a gathering of people with the common goal to spend time together celebrating the infinite possibilities of the future, without necessarily being shackled to the dictates of the past or the cycles of present-day society.”  And it was just that. Held out in the middle of a desert in Nevada, miles and miles away from anything, an invite only experience with live music, deep house music parties, yoga, meditation, wellness, pampering, nature, talks from some of our greatest visionary leaders… but it was mostly to bring together the like-minded “COMMUNITY OF DREAMERS AND DOERS, OF INNOVATORS AND LEADERS THAT SHARE the same SENSE OF MINDFULNESS AND OPTIMISM to meet, collaborate, and connect”.

So lets back track to about a couple of months before the event.  As we got our invitations from Robot Heart (a very well-known party-going visionary collective camp at Burningman)  to this first ever, epic-adventure called Further Future our minds started to wonder.  Given almost no information except that it was going to be somewhere in the Nevada desert, it was going to be a plethora of different experiences bringing together art, wellness, partying, and much more… it was going to be nothing like we had ever experienced before. As someone with a weakness for adventure and the unknown, plus the knowledge of the amazing parties Robot Heart throws at Burningman, I excepted the invitation immediately, rented an RV and was ready to go.

Fast-forwarding to the first day of Further Future, I’m with my buddies in a RV that we just picked up from Las Vegas.  One week before this, we received the location, we were told to drive 30 minutes past Las Vegas where we will find our destination. So into the desert we go…into our adventure.  After driving for a while with nothing but desert around us, we see two big bright lit-up “F”s in the middle of NOWHERE… this was it, this was our entrance.  Hearts pounding, anticipation at it’s high, we drive through the F’s on to a dirt road and our adventure begins.

Further Future Further Future Further Future

It was a magic desert dream, that ended up being a “build-your-own adventure” type weekend.  There was a full variety schedule around the clock, something for everyone.  For the hard-core partier: live music, Djs, and random get togethers 24-hours out of the day, on stages, on top of buses, in the dirt, partying was happening all around.  For the person that came for the knowledge, art, and wellness: there was enough interactive art installation, yoga, meditation, gong bath-houses, massages, hair-braiding, body-art, and innovative visionary speakers, to fill up your entire weekend.  If you wanted a little of both, which was the majority of us, we’d filp-flop between live music, speakers such as Tony Hsieh, Astro Teller from Google X, and the creators of Sound Cloud, eating delicious food concoctions, doing yoga, getting massages and then leaving the majority of our partying for the evening until the early morning hours, watching the sunrise as we danced away to the psychedelic beats of all the amazing DJs.

And lets just stop and  emphasize on one MAJOR thing. Let me remind you that this was all created on land with nothing on it. Not a single pipe for running water, not a single outlet for energy, not a single building for shade.  This was all put there for this very event, for us.  Robot Heart created all of this, created a magical wonderland, this playground, and then at the end left it as if we had never been there, no trace (as they call it at Burningman)…incredible.  Like seriously AMAZING right?!

My days there went too quick.  There was not enough time to eat at every vendor, to see every art piece, to experience every yoga class, to hear every speaker, to listen to every live act, and to be at every party…especially when we were also trying to meet and connect with all the other fascinating souls there.   We sure tried, we slept very little, total FOMO kicked in (fear of missing out), but as I watched the sun rise on my last day there, dancing on top of the Robot Heart double decker bus, next to the DJ, watching beautiful girls climbing on the Robot Heart structure above me, I knew my life had changed….even if it was just a little bit.  I was once again inspired by the beauty around us, by the magic that happens when you step into the unknown, out of your comfort zone and into the energy of this life.

What an incredible indescribable journey this was.  Full of unknowns, rolling-with-the-punches, love, life, and magic!  A journey I definitely have been craving since I left.

Our world for the weekend.

Further Future-9

The infamous ROBOT HEART bus
Further Future

Astro Teller from Google X inspiring usFurther Future-7

The creators of Sound Could droppin some knowledgeFurther Future-8

Zoe Keating bringing us to a whole other level with her Cello
Further Future

The Wellness Tent
Further Future-5

Everyone was dressed FUTURISTIC
Further Future-6 Further Future-12 Further Future-11 Further Future-10 Further Future-17Further Future-2

Climbing on an art structure with my Re/Creation crew
Further Future Further Future-3

As the sun rises
Further Future-21

The bar and big bean bags to chill on
Further Future-13 Further Future-23 Further Future-20 Further Future-18

This is LIFE
Further Future-22

Our land for the weekend
Further Future Overview Further Future-4

Miss you already ROBOT HEART, hope to see you soon! ❤

Culture · Events I Attend · Inspiration · travel

[Another article on] FURTHER FUTURE By Cathleen Cher

Cathleen Cher wrote about Further Future SO beautifully in her article here… and I like it cause I was mentioned in it 🙂

THE WINDS OF CHANGE AT FURTHER FUTURE
By Cathleen Cher for Milkmaid.com

FF1 FF2

When I received a last minute invitation to attend Further Future, a festival put on by Burning Man community favorite, Robot Heart at the Moapa Indian Reservation in Nevada, I was immediately intrigued by the name. The festival’s official description was a celebration of “the infinite possibilities of our future, without necessarily being shackled to the dictates of the past or the cycles of present day society.” To achieve this, they promised to “combine the connective power of music and art to bring people together to shed their anxieties and fears, and touch a natural state of happiness.” The festival hoped to create a “culture of open thought and inquiry sharing ideas and aspirations with leading minds in the fields of art, business, science, technology and thought.” Others described it to me as a “bougie Burning Man.”

FF3 FF4

To someone who still has never braved Burning Man, it seemed like a safe and easier introduction. It offered luxury air-conditioned tents, access to showers and high-end spa services, as well as an expansive food selection that boasted fresh pressed juices, poutine (with vegan options), gourmet hot dogs, and Vietnamese favorites, like banh mi and pho. There was even a pop up dinner with acclaimed chef Sam Marvin of Echo & Rig in a beautiful white tent, where everyone sat on white pillows and gathered around communal tables decked out with flowers and candles. There were beautifully crafted “pods” that lined the festival, akin to those you would find at a luxury hotel in Miami, that provided temporary relief from the scorching near 100 degree temperatures and intermittent dust storms. Costumes are encouraged – ‘who are you in the Further Future?’ was the prompt, and if this was truly a tell on what people would be wearing in the future, I am here to report that pants will be discouraged.

FF5 FF7 FF6

It seemed obvious that the crowd itself was curated, the median age skewed much older than any other festival I’d attended and it was clear that invitations were sent out to tastemakers, culture creators, entrepreneurs, and innovators, as intended. Those who didn’t receive an invitation and interested in attending were asked to “apply” with a short introduction about themselves, as they wanted “all attendees to have a basic understanding and appreciation of their values or trust and respect and love of exploration and discovery.” Among the people I met over the weekend, outside of writers from prominent media outlets, I made friends with the founder of the much buzzed about MyIntent Project(recently on Kanye West’s wrist on the cover of Time magazine), Chris Pan, got photos snapped by Cole Rise, the founder of the app Litely (and developer of 7 original filters of Instagram), and chatted with a woman, Casey Lum, who just opened a store, B.Poy & Jo, and would be leaving the festival to go straight to an award ceremony to be honored as one of the 20 celebrated new small business owners in LA.

FF8 FF10 FF9

One of the unique offerings of Further Future was the line up of speakers brought to start enlightening conversations. Included among them was, Dr. Astro Teller, the Captain of Moonshoots for Google[x] who spoke about ‘Building the Future’, Alex Ljung, the CEO of SoundCloud, who imparted his knowledge on ‘The Future of Music Distribution’, and Phil Libin, the CEO of Evernote who spoke on ‘The Meaning of Life’, which he concluded in an urge for people to “do something that can help people attain the divine spark.” The actual music stages were few and close together, which allowed for easy and enjoyable access, and with about 1000 total attendees, it was never difficult to get a good spot. Standouts included Damian Lazarus & The Ancient Moons, who seemed like he belonged in the desert with his intricate outfit, Tropicool, who got everyone dancing on a small elevated stage which everyone could fit on and dance together. Miguel Migs brought on Lisa Shaw to sing and remind everyone of the soulful origins of house. Rhye, whose effortlessly beautiful voice soared through the desert night sky, and Nosaj Thing, whose mesmerizing set ended at an early 5AM and set the tone for the last day. The entire festival was then closed out by crowd favorite, Bob Moses, who delivered what felt like a homecoming performance—they interacted with the crowd like old friends, swigging whiskey in between songs, and everyone danced and sang along with a knowing fervor of familiarity.

FF11

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

FF13

One of the major themes of FF was “hack your consciousness”, and they intended to do so by providing devices that directly influence brain waves and inspire connection, soul gazing, emotion sharing (an introduction to 20 second hugs), long sessions of sunrise + sunset yoga, sound therapy meditation, and an extended Gamelatron gong bath. I was especially enthralled by a device known as the Biotron, which had an entrance fashioned after a vagina, which turned out to be collective sound light therapypod that would help slow down brain waves. I was told that scientifically, Biotronesis is a phenomenon where brainwave frequencies tend to follow periodic external stimulation, and at our different conscious states, there is a measurable neural oscillation rate/frequency. The 14 minute pod experience, which I shared in a warm and plush all white fluffy environment with 11 other new friends, had us lay down and listen to soothing gongs while staring at the ceiling that had strings of neon lights running through it. With the help of the hypnotic effect of the lights, we started off with the awake Beta frequency (12-30Hz), began weaving in and out, stepladdering down through all the scales of Beta, Theta, Alpha, Delta, then slowly back up. The desire for this experiment was to facilitate a state of calmness for everyone involved.

FF15 FF17 FF16

My personal experience in this pod was indicative of what this festival was about—it utilized and exposed you to the newest technology, brought people together, instilled an inner calmness through external excitement, harnessed the power of sound and visuals to inspire a feeling of connectedness, and then left you with a greater appreciation for the beauty of art and the human condition.

FF14

Photography by Stacie Hess and Cole Rise

Being a Business Owner · Inspiration · travel

I Write Out of Order… Inspirations before opening the new store…

Written 1/28/15  After coming home from Summit Powder Mountain ❤ (one of my favorite places on earth)

10475596_10101524869611177_458671686240221088_n

I just touched down in LA. Ready to be the best me I can be. I just came from a land of visionaries: the dreamers, the thinkers, the doers, the entrepreneurs, and the visionaries. The people that really make this world LIVE.
Spending three days in an incubator of the these incredible people only inspires me to come back to my everyday life to make it an extraordinary one. To incorporate these thoughts and collaborations in my business and my everyday life.
It was the perfect beginning of this new chapter of my life! Out of negativity of my old store and on to the positivity of the new store. HERE WE GO!
Being a Business Owner · Inspiration · travel

A Step Away for a More Productive Me

Late post: Wrote on 11/3/14

I had to escape.  My work was getting the best of me.  I was drowning in my to-do list.  I could not get away from my everyday stresses… In fact there were new stresses I didn’t even know how to handle.  I was screaming at traffic (which is abnormal for me).  I was on edge (to say the least)… I had to escape.

So where did I go?  I went home…not my LA home…my HOME home…good ol’ small town NorCal.  Where life is a little slower, Fall is a little brighter, your thoughts move through your head a little clearer, and you get time to think, time to make decisions before another one comes to your head.  Where the comfort of my parents presence need not have words, just there presence alone lifts a burden off these weighted shoulders.

I was in need of a change of scenery.  Even though I worked most of the time I was in NorCal, the idea of working somewhere else besides my store or my apartment, or even LA for that matter, sounded blissful…and little did I know how blissful it  would be. I was really able to refocus and get work done without my normal distractions, it was just what I needed.

Gorgeous Sunset

Sometimes its not about a vacation, sometimes its just about taking a small step away, relocating your workspace for a little bit, finding a place that fuels you, and really just letting it be you, your to-do list, and your new scenery.  To do this and to really allow it in my life has really helped me as a creative person and especially as a entrepreneur.

Things that have helped me when choosing a refueling place is: finding somewhere that you know you’ll be comfortable, somewhere with minimal distractions, a place that inspires you, somewhere where you have minimal friends in the area (so you are not tempted with distractions, or designate time with them beforehand), and prepare correctly, bring all that you need.

Sometimes we don’t know how much rest, relaxation, and a step away we need until we actually get it!  Thank you NorCal for being that place for me.

travel

The Gypsy Life

20120706-125715.jpg

This week alone I have packed and unpacked my bags three times to wonder the land in this gypsy life. I am currently taking a gas break on my third venture of the week… The long drive to Nor Cal from LA. It’s nothing like long trips alone; you, your car, and country music; that really get you thinking.

For me, I really enjoy the picking-up-and -go lifestyle. Not knowing of I have everything I need, probably shouldn’t be spending the money I’m about to spend, and craving the kind of stories and adventures that are going to come from my nomad-ness.

I have met very few people in my life that I can honestly say like to live like this too. Not saying it’s a bad or good thing, just interesting. Some people think I’m crazy, and I’m ok with that.  I feel it’s very freeing to not have everything planned, and really leave it up to the universe for the adventure.  This is when I feel the most amazing things happen and when I learn the most about myself.  Life is interesting when you take out the comfort of your home, your town, your security, life is interesting on long car rides where you have nothing to do but think (you get to know yourself pretty well), and life is really interesting when you disconnect from all you have to do and focus and enjoy your journey.

Ok, time to stop writing, and time to start driving. On the road again.