"Knock Knock!"

Binzento's knocking on doors of fascinating people with creative minds - Coffee date and pick their brains

Holiday Season 2015
KNOCK KNOCK! Hello Celleste Chan
The "Hair Treatment Specialist"
Celleste Chan; photo by: Binzento

After a long break, my mission to knock on the doors of Calgarian talents who have inspired me to learn more about their work over coffee – Binzento Vincente’s ‘Knock Knock’ series – resumes! Some of my folks have asked me how I could regularly bleach my hair without worrying excessive hair damage. The truth is, hair is pretty much done after harsh chemical treatments. The way to cope it is to find the right products that keep the hair looking healthy. Also, I guess finding an expert who knows very well the ‘art of hair treatment’ would be beneficial. And this expert becomes the spotlight of my holiday season 'Knock Knock' feature. She is also one of my long time friends and hairstylist Celleste Chan, the founder of her home hair studio – Celleste Hair

Celleste has been in the hair business for more than ten years. As a hair stylist, she has been involved in many fashion shows, editorials and competitions. Now her focus is to build her own brand – Celleste Hair. As much as she loves creating beautiful hairstyles and concepts, Celleste said her true passion lies on developing the craft on hair treatment. She's like the 'hair angel' who takes pride in helping her clients to ‘fix their difficult hair problems’ or take preventive measures to minimize hair damage result from pre- and post- bleaching/coloring procedures.

Some of you may recall my ambitious hair coloring routines going through multiple cycles of platinum blond, turquoise and pastel pink hair (all in the name of fashion and styles). I have to give all the props to Celleste and her expertise in hair treatment, which thankfully kept my hair at a healthy and manageable state. Perhaps what I admired the most about Celleste is her patience, passion and genuine heart of caring about her clients. I still remember my last visit at her studio we took more than 5 hours just to get my hair to the right level and shade of color. She would also educate me on how to go about using the best hair treatment products and how to do follow-up hair care at my own home. All I can say is that I am super grateful for all the care I received for my hair. Mericbeaucoup Celleste! <3

April 2015
KNOCK KNOCK! Hello David Buchanan
The "Dapper Architect"
David Buchanan; photo by: Binzento

In this month’s feature I have visited Calgary-based artist David Buchanan’s home, spending an afternoon sharing our thoughts about artwork and architecture. When I first met David few years ago, I remembered him telling me about his passion for art and designs. I have never thought however, that a dapper gent like Buchanan would be into mastering contemporary art based out of carved wooden blocks and pieces. The finished product, a constructive art display, is composed of refinement, intricacy and geometry. I am quite fascinated by his aesthetic of combining logic and mathematics, and metaphoric representation.

Buchanan explains that his work is part of the “visual discovery”, and in his art he often uses completely different objects as representations to narrate his personal lifestyle and life experience. This is his way of using a different (art) ‘language’ rather than a straight forward imagery to tell the stories about his emotions. It requires the audience to hypothesize the intention behind the art, then to conduct research and discover the actual meaning from the artist – Similar to the approach taken by a scientist.

Growing up in a small town of Grande Prairie, Buchanan has always liked science-subjects at school such as biology, and he always enjoyed spending time rendering things. He’s built a great interest in architecture and this is vividly shown in his artwork where everything seems to be carefully calculated or in a systematic manner. Moving to Calgary is Buchanan's first venture to discover himself as an artist. As of current, he is working on a collection which he’ll exhibit upon completion.
Art by David Buchanan; photo source: davidbuchanan.org

March 2015
KNOCK KNOCK! Hello Lori Andrews 
The "10 Cent Wonder Woman" 
Lori Andrews; photo by: Binzento

If I have to find a female version of myself, I think Lori Andrews would be on top of that list. This Calgary-based “artsy-Wonder Woman” is probably one the most creatively-diverse individuals I’ve met in this city. Aside from her imaginative work of talent in interior designs, traces of Andrew’s inspirations can also be found in the universe of photography, fine art and fashion styling. This multifaceted artistic-ability Andrews inherited is a part of what she calls it her “creative control”. She explains that her work whether it’s interior design or photography is about capturing a familiar image from day-to-day life and turns it into a concept, then follow through.
One of Lori Andrew's interior design work

We sat down in her dining room where Andrews served me a freshly made espresso. She discusses that her experimentation in fashion came about 5 years ago, and prior she would rather invest her money into new furniture. For Andrews, simplicity is key to her personal style, and she is mostly attracted to looks that are cheerful and optimistic. I can certainly attest to that having seen from time to time the stylishly organic, vibrant, fun and playful photos she posted on her “10 Cent Designer” blog and Instagram.

What I've gained from observing her interior designs, Andrews exemplifies the idea of embracing the sentimental past while celebrating the modern time with innovative concepts. Similarly in fashion, Andrews mix-and-matches clothes with pieces she sometimes would DIY herself. And perhaps that’s the nature of a “10 Cent Designer”, “Life is (just) too short to wear boring clothes”. What’s next on her agenda? Andrews has just launched her secret project the “10 Cent Studio”. The newly “retained, designed and renovated” studio space will become the ultimate creative hub for Andrew’s photography and design work with an added bonus – classes. Yes, we can all learn lessons from this Wonder Woman of designs very soon. 

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