Thoughts and Things

Music We’ve Made: Sea of Love

This cover of Sea of Love (based mostly on Cat Powers’ version) was recorded during a late-night rehearsal before my sister’s wedding last year. The organ, drums and bass were looped and played by Steve and I played the surfy guitar and sang. This song was sung for my sister and her husband’s first dance as a married couple.

Be forewarned: this track isn’t mastered so the volume is low and the recording quality is rough.



Laser Cut Record

Umm. Pretty amazing laser cut record. It sounds really rough and compressed because it’s at a 4 bit resolution, but the idea is amazing. Also check out this 3D printed record and How-to.

Collaboration and Laser Cut Marine Animals

Tuna Fish - Laser Cut Marine Animal Canvas

For the past month (and then some) I’ve been cutting (then sanding) upwards of 1 thousand plywood shapes on the laser cutter at TechShop for a collaborative project with artist Katie Schuler. All of these shapes puzzle piece together to create life-size marine animals that will be sketched and painted by Katie for a show, Sea Spirits, coming up on the 4th of June in Washington, D.C.


Here are some more of the laser cut animals. Mola (Sunfish, Irrawaddy Dolphin, and Harbor Seals).

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And here are some sneak peeks of Katie’s painted pieces. They look fantastic!


More updates when I get them!

Music I’m Listening To: Caravan

I’ve FINALLY started to watch Mad Men. I know. I’m horribly late, but I don’t have a television, much less a cable subscription. But I’m so glad I’ve started it.

In the first episode they play a version of Caravan. Here’s a version Duke Ellington & Juan Tizol performed in 1952:

Good stuff.

Type and Characters – the history of type design at CCA

Types & Characters CCA Type Exhibit

image from CCA Graphic Design Programs’ Facebook page

Types and Characters exhibit at CCA

I recently had the honor to be included in Types and Characters (read my write up for Glyfyx here), an exhibit of the history of type design at California College of the Arts.

The CCA Advanced Design Exhibition class taught by Jon Sueda (how I wish the class was available to me when I was at CCA) curated the exhibit, featuring type designed in Rod Cavazos’ Type Design Studio class (mine included). It also showcased work by two of my favorite professors Rod Cavazos (of course) and Bob Afouldish. I had a huge “design crush” on Bob in school, I think that’s why I freeze up whenever he’s around me. Ugh, I’ve GOT to get over that.

They also exhibited work by the talented and prolific James Edmondson. Loved his skateboards.

One of my favorite things was how they displayed the student sketches from 7 years of Rod’s Type Design Studio.
sketches from the students of Rod Cavazos'' Type Design Studio

And here’s a sample of the typeface I designed in Rod’s class in 2007 which made it into their exhibit catalog.
Euphonie by Justine Mendoza circa 2007

Read my write up of the event on the Glyfyx blog!

Music We’ve Made: Blue Room

Justine and Steve

I decided it may be good to introduce some music into my blog (and hopefully back into my daily life). I’ll try to post songs that inspire me, that I’ve just discovered, or that I’ve been listening to lately (like the inspirational Auntie Pesto), but I thought to start I could share a song that we recorded years ago. In the 5 years that we’ve been together, Steve & I  have written 30+ songs together (I’ve counted), we have lots of recorded “sketches,” but have arranged and recorded very few complete versions of our songs.

This track is one of the few that we put extra work into. Blue Room was written by me, arranged by Steve, sung by the both of us and recorded with cello, banjo, and cajon (a percussive wooden box that were originally made out of drawers). This is a VERY long version that needs to be edited and perhaps even re-arranged into something less plodding and dismal. But here it is in its current (4 yr. old) existence:

And here are the lyrics:


A haunted ultimatum.(PS. I gave all our songs little descriptions like this… I guess I thought it was helpful at the time)

they knock down the door
misguided thoughts that
ravage my soul
I fall to the floor
Fall prey to the story
I’d rather ignore

then you came through the door
but yours was a soul
they had learned to ignore
There’s no fight anymore
nothing to rescue
nothing left to console

The ghosts seep in through knots on the boards
that make up the walls of my little blue room
They put on my clothes and dance in a row
Laughing and mocking my little blue room

You said there be no more
said it was done
said you were finally whole
then you fell to the floor
fell prey to the story
you’d rather ignore

The ghosts seep in through knots on the boards
that make up the walls of my little blue room.
They swim through my hair and leave me in braids
deep in the corner of my little blue room

Choral Voices

We’ve come this far
to be chained down and dragged
to lose everything
that we’ve ever had

They’ve come this far
To flush out my soul
To scrape with their nails around any hole
We’ve come this far
to be chained down and dragged
to lose everything that we’ve ever had

There’s nothing left to mourn
You told me the stories
And I stayed to hear more
That memory was the last
Take it or leave me
as another ghost of your past

The ghosts seep in through knots on the boards
that make up the walls of my little blue room.
Their hands are too cold and their eyes are like stones
they swim through my hair and they put on my clothes
They bring with them rain and they ride on the wind
circling in eddies
deep in the corner of my little blue room

Copyright 2009 Justine Mendoza

Ooooo – Studio Session

Lake Merritt Sound - Singing in the Studio

In the studio today recording some backup vocals for a friend’s song. This is my first time recording in a “real” studio (Merritt Sound). It was a wonderful, but humbling experience. I realize that I need to incorporate music into my life once again (with new jobs and my Etsy thing, I’ve been feeling a bit stretched thin). We used to play music every night.

In {Moonish} Veritas Est

Moonish Goods has just been featured on blog In {} Veritas Est (In __Their is Truth). Check it out!

Moonish Goods on In Veritas Est

Moonish Goods on In Veritas EstSam writes that I design “beautiful, whimsical laser cut window hangings that bring the perfect the amount of cheer and personality to every room.” *BLUSH*

Thanks Sam!!

Art and Crafts! CCA Spring Fair 2013

Had so much fun on the sunny CCA Oakland campus today. We (my partner & I) set up a booth with some of my laser cut sun catchers I call Window Words. I also brought some paintings, pins and earrings. We (mostly he) built a custom stand to display my window hangings in context. I loved that it turned out so minimal yet sturdy. I think it really helps to see the Window Words in context because when they just sit on the table people have no idea what to do with them.

Moonish Goods at the CCA Craft FairMoonish Goods at the CCA Craft Fair

There are so many talented artists to admire and it’s always interesting to see the new pieces that vendors bring. I finally picked up a beautiful bouquet from one of my favorite CCA crafts-people the Fiber Florist Vivian Truong! She specializes in making Native Californian flowers in recycled felt maintain exquisite detail. And these babies wont wilt! Please take a look at her Etsy shop and pick up a bouquet for Mother’s Day.

Fiber Florist bouquet!


New Finds: Simple White and Wood

New selection of simple and beautiful Etsy finds:


‘White and Wood’ by MoonishGoods

Vintage Copper Still and Sta…


LOVE – Clipboard


thonet 1950s mid century wal…


BLACK & WHITE // Sterling si…


You Make Me So Happy in Whit…


ICICLE no. 38 – metallic lea…


Bearded – screen printed can…


up-cycled suede ballet flats…


Geometric Upcycled Paper Chr…


SALE: Bunny Toddler Shirt – …


lovely black bowls with plat…


Vintage STOP Sign – Black an…


Custom Natural White Sandina…


Wood Alphabet Letter Modern …


Screenprinted fabric printed…


Nursery mobile, Baby mobile,…


Treasury tool supported by the dog house