weather report: in for an epic new year

On the cusp of the ball drop and then … 2023!!  To seal it up, we caught up with artists Lily Qian, Amanda Giuffre and Susan Rosenberg Jones. Then: sharing some NYE snaps from old times and flipping over to late-night underground NYC punk (cuz’ the music never stops).

Hungover?  Winter cold? Natural energy boost? We ain’t into rezzies but suggest you step into thy virtual bodega for some conscious sips (our hoodie is a sweet winter staple just sayin’).

check it : @lilyqian_

ROCKAWAY: Where are you from and where do you live now?

LILY QIAN: I was born in China and raised in Virginia. Brooklyn has been my home for the past 16 years. There's no place like New York City.

 ROCKAWAY: When did you become an artist and what inspires your work now?

LILY QIAN: I loved drawing since early childhood. I studied and worked as a designer in the fashion industry prior to making the jump into freelance illustration. I find inspiration from French new wave films, old vinyls, 90's animation, my childhood children's picture books, and commercial illustrations from the 60's and 70's.

ROCKAWAY: What kind of visual diet did you have as a kid — what inspired you?

LILY QIAN: As a kid, our home was filled with oil paintings by my father and posters, costumes and toy design samples by my mother, a collection of curated art books, a large oversized wooden drawing table, fabrics, trims, and a vintage sewing machine. My artist parents were my first inspirations. They showed me how fun it is to experiment, to embrace accidents and seek elements of surprise, to be brave and pursue dynamic range. I'll always respect artists.

ROCKAWAY: What do you love about storytelling thru all the elements of fashion, animals, kid-lit, advertising and beauty?

LILY QIAN: I've worn many hats in the creative industry and all the skills you learn from each job will carry on to the next. I enjoy the different thinking and medium specific processes required when working in multiple markets. 

ROCKAWAY: How do you balance work and play?

LILY QIAN: I subscribe to the work hard play hard motto -- and no longer stress over finding a perfect balance. All I can do is focus on what is the current priority. I feel happy and balanced when I'm making decisions that are honest and true to myself.

ROCKAWAY : What's your fall mantra?

LILY QIAN: Summer is my favorite season so when fall comes around, it's time to put my head down and work.

more awesome nyc art @nounnewyork

ROCKAWAY : Where are you from?

AG : I grew up in Wyckoff, NJ then moved to NYC. Now I’m in Hoboken. 

ROCKAWAY : When did you become an artist and what inspires your work now?

AG :I’ve been the creative type my entire life. Growing up I was awful at sports and was motivated by art and design. I named my IG handle “NOUN NEW YORK”, because I was illustrating people, places and things, the stuff I’m inspired by. Over COVID, I was missing  city life, so I began to draw my favorite storefronts. I started posting on Instagram, and here we are.

ROCKAWAY : What kind of visual diet did you have as a kid?

AG : I’m a 90’s kid, so my visual diet consisted less of the internet, and more of books, magazines, toys, and tv shows.

ROCKAWAY : How do you balance work and play?

AG : Play is important to fuel creative work. The world around me is what drives my creativity. I make sure to make time to travel and spend time with family and friends. I’m very organized and rely on to-do lists, which help me to stay on track.

ROCKAWAY : What are your favorite New York spots?

AG : This is a tough one. A breakfast sandwich from Daily Provisions, Bagel from Tompkins’ Square, coffee from Birch, weeknight dinner at Flex Mussels or Cafe Mogador, pasta from Don Angie, sushi from Momoya, Dirty Martini from Dante, wine from Lavaux, cookies from Levain. 

ROCKAWAY: What is your late fall motto?

AG: Sweaters & sweats! 

and always beach vibes, courtesy of @susanrosenbergjones

ROCKAWAY Where are you from? I was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts. 

SRJ: I moved to NYC when I was 25.
ROCKAWAY : When did you start taking photographs and what caught your eye from an early age? 

SRJ: I started taking photographs when I was about 9 or 10. A neighbor woman saw me walking around with my little plastic camera and bought me a "how to" book - which I devoured. I decided making portraits was my thing, and to this day, I mostly photograph people.
ROCKAWAY: What do you love about photography -- and how do you get into the flow? 

SRJ: Photography is pure fun. I love the challenge of what to photograph, and the excitement of culling through the resulting images. When I'm shooting, I'm "in the zone". I just dive in - whether on the beach or boardwalk, just walking around, taking photographs. With self portraits I tend to configure the image in my mind's eye before setting up the shot.
ROCKAWAY: What's your advice to someone who wants to learn how to take a picture? 

SRJ: Try a visual diary. Go through a day and photograph things and scenes that interest you throughout the day and evening. Try to do that for a few days, a week, a month...I guarantee you'll find a story there, and lots of interesting ways to group your images. 
ROCKAWAY: You shoot around NY and Coney Island -- what attracts you to urban scenes? 

SRJ : I love street photography, and look at lots of images by active street shooters. At the beach, I can be almost invisible as I move about with my camera. People on the beach are too busy enjoying themselves to worry about being photographed. And it's still wonderfully urban - I love the diversity of people and activities that I see on the New York beaches.
ROCKAWAY: What's your fall motto? 

SRJ: Find a big pile of leaves and jump in!

bonus track: new years in nyc

Some oldies and goodies from around the boroughs – including some iconic polar bear plunges into the Atlantic Ocean.

ON LOOP: NIGHTCLUBBING, The Birth of Punk Rock in NYC, 2022


“Nightclubbing we're nightclubbing, we walk like a ghost, we learn dances brand new dances like the nuclear bomb, when we're nightclubbing” - IGGY POP

The first-ever documentary about the legendary Max’s Kansas City (1965-1981), which helped make punk a thing. Sid Vicious, Billy Idol, Penny Arcade, Alice Cooper, Iggy & The Stooges just to name a few.  And then there was Warhol and his posse holding court in the backroom.

founder freestyle flow :

brb post 2023 plunge!

rock on. x b

where the streets meet the beach. @drinkrockaway