Michael Costanza


First Time at First Fridays!

Learn more about Flatiron Project.


I had an amazing opportunity last night to head up to Chicago and check out some galleries at the Flat Iron Arts Building. For those not aware, First Fridays is a monthly event where Chicago galleries, studios, and art spaces open up their doors to the community at large. It’s a really great way to see what’s currently going on in the art world, good or bad. This trek is not always doable, since we never really have too much extra for a sitter, and my wife is generally working on Friday nights. Last night, however, the starts aligned and, with my buddy Scott having an extra seat, I tagged along. Along with myself and Scott were a few of his kids as well as a woman named Mary Beth, who teaches with Scott at a college in town.

On our way up there, we ran into some pretty nasty traffic on 90/94. I suspect there may have been a big sports event, like the Hawks. Honestly it was really quite odd. Sadly, as a result, our hour long minute trip turned into almost a 3 hour commute. It was somewhat agonizing, but such is commuting in Chicago at times. So, we got into the Wicker Park neighborhood, found parking, and then ate at this totally awesome place called the Native Foods Cafe. What’s really unique about this place is that it’s all vegan. Now, I’m not vegan, but I’m not opposed to the vegan lifestyle, if not for the health benefits of removing meat and dairy from your diet. Anyway, what was really interesting is that they had what they called “native” chicken, which looked, felt, and tasted like chicken. It was amazing!

After dinner, we went onto the main event, the Flat Iron Arts Building. Here’s a little info about the first fridays event. If you’re a Chicagoan, or in town during that first week, check it out:


Flat Iron First Fridays


What’s really cool about this building is that it’s a hodge podgy labyrinth of work spaces, galleries, and artist lofts. What wasn’t cool was a lack of really cool art. I was really surprised that, by and large, the art was mediocre at best. And I’m not trying to be a snob because I have a background in art (not that I’m some expert), but it just reminds me that doing art a lot of times isn’t about the quality of your work. More so, it’s about the confidence you have in yourself to express what you think and see of the world.

This was a great lesson and reminder of the journey I’m on with the empower network. They’re teaching me that I already have it in me to succeed, may it be with my art (which hasn’t been touched upon in a while) or with my desire to get involved with my community or even my progression into the blogging realm. A few days in and I’m already feeling empowered.

Keep Exploring,


Reblog from main blog.

Flat Iron First Fridays

Blogs That Don’t Suck – Now York City – Ethereal

In my daily pinteresting, I came across this cool photo blog called NowYorkCity. Curated by Stephia Madleyne Kascher, it features a large number of photos of the great City of New York, both past and present. ( I am obligated to note that being a native of Chicagoland, I cannot write greatest City of New York because my heart will always consider ChiTown the greatest) What’s really cool is that a majority of the curated photos are in black and white.This is not uncommon, especially with older photos and art sites, but it seems like trends have been leaning toward color, at least when I look around. The older photos have this ethereal feel ( as I suggested in the title) and give glimpse into the growing, beautiful metropolis in its earlier years. I was really inspired to create this post because on Pinterest today, I started an ethereal board. The weather has been rainy the past few days, so I definitely found it to be appropriate. And so, for your viewing pleasure, I “curated” a sampling of my own from the site. I hope Stephia approves. Oh, also, I’m trying to link all of my blogs to my new blog (aka MEGABLOG) and that can be found here.




Joe’s Slop Sink

For our inaugural post, I thought I’d give credit to the guy who took the awesome photo that I am using as our header, Joe Gledhill. Finding a picture of a cool, run down sink may be harder than you might think, but alas, I found this little ditty of an old sink in Seattle, WA. Unfortunately, I couldn’t seem to find a website of Joe specifically, but I did find some of his work that he posted on B&W Magazine. If anyone knows Joe, let me know! I’d love to give credit, where credit is due. Here’s a link to his B&W page, found here, and here’s a few of my favorites:



(Joe Gledhill @ B&W)