The Hidden AZ Hanging Gardens

AURORA THE EXPLORER DOES THE HIDDEN AZ HANGING GARDENS Strawberry, AZ 

Length: 5 miles round-trip approx: 5-6 hrs
Difficulty:  Moderate  3/5
Elevation: Approx: -550 feet
Directions: Take the I17 N & exit Camp Verde "US260" Head east on US260. Then make a right at mile marker 142. Continue on FS142 till you come to a T in the road, then go left on FR142B. At the Y stay left. Continue on this road till you reach the canyon edge. Then, look for the staked rocks as markers.
Best suited for high-clearance vehicles.
Dogs Allowed: Not Recommended
Best Times. April-August
Horses Allowed: No
Camping. Yes, definitely recommended. 

Let me just start by saying, this is by far my most favorite hike to date! It has just the right amount of adventure, beauty, and obstacles to make for a truly amazing day trip! 
For starters, you must have a 4x4 high clearance vehicle to make it here. The trail is a rocky one and quite an adventure in itself! Of course once you get to the trailhead, you forget completely about the ride in.
You start off right at the edge of the canyon with a breath- taking view! You then seek out the stacked rocks, and make your way down the narrow trail. Be aware it is incredibly steep and the rocks are covered in sand and dirt so please proceed with caution. 

Once you reach the bottom, I recommend you make a marker of where you came out at. You certainly don't want to miss your exit on the way back. From here, just follow the stream. Water shoes are a must here; along with a waterproof bag and a floaty of some sort is recommended. For as you make you way upstream, the canyon walls begin to close in around you and there is only way thing left to do; swim. 

Now, that wasn't the only part you have to swim across to get the magical, 'Hanging Gardens'. There are several more...somewhere between 8-10 depending on water levels. Don't worry, the experience is absolutely incredible! Being out in the middle of no where, swimming in in the crystal clear water, surrounded by the red canyon walls...golly here is thinking like it! It's just so surreal. 
PLEASE NOTE: This is absolutely NOT the place you want to be during a flash flood. There would literally be no escape so urge you to please check the weather report before making this trip! Also, this water is very cold so do not even attempt this during the winter months unless you have a full wetsuit. Moving on...

My recommendation is to bring a cheap inflatable tube or 2 to haul your stuff and/or yourself across. I wore flippers to give me speed and so I could look underwater, but there wasn't much to be seen below the surface.
You just have to keep moving along upstream...don't get discouraged like I did. It took my 3 attempts to find this place, and when I turned the corner  and was greeted with this view...
 

This makes it all worth while. There aren't to many people  in the world who get to see a place like this. A true oasis in the desert. Words cannot even begin to describe it! I bathed under the falls, swung from the rope swing, and swam in the cave...I will never forget this amazing journey! It is not easy, but it is SO worth it! 

Please PM me for questions/comments. 

Devils Bridge

AURORA THE EXPLORER does Devils Bridge Sedona, AZ

Length: Approx 2 miles round trip from the Devil's Bridge parking area (4x4 vehicle required) Approx: 1.5hrs. 4 miles round trip from the parking area on Long Canyon Road, 6 miles from the Dry Creek Vista parking area.
Difficulty:  Moderate  2.5/5
Elevation: Approx 400 feet
Directions: Head to Sedona, Arizona. Continue through Sedona to Dry Creek Road (FR152) at the west end of town. Turn right on Dry Creek Road and drive for two miles to where FR152 forks and take the right fork (leaving the paved road). It is best suited for high-clearance vehicles. It is not recommended during wet weather. About 1.3 miles up this road, turn right to Devil's Bridge Trailhead and parking lot. 
Dogs Allowed: Yes (on a leash)
Best Times. Apri-May and September-November
Horses Allowed: Not Recommended 

Now this is a place I truly cannot recommend enough! I also cannot stress the importance of getting here nice and early. This is a very popular trail and people travel from all across the world just to see this iconic landmark! It is the largest natural sandstone arch in Sedona and the hike to get there is just beautiful. 
If you do not have a 4x4 vehicle to park in the Trailhead parking lot, I recommend bringing a mountain bike to shave some time off the beginning half of the hike. It just looked a bit dull to me. Also there is not much shade along the way so don't forget a hat, sunscreen and plenty of water.

Family makes every adventure more fun! Also, if my 67 year old uncle pictured about can do it, so can you! 

Family makes every adventure more fun! Also, if my 67 year old uncle pictured about can do it, so can you! 

The hike itself is quite pleasant and there is much to see along the way so be sure to take your time and enjoy each and every moment! It's not about the destination folks, it all about THE JOURNEY! 
The red rock formations are breath-taking and the steep, natural rock staircase (pictured left) is quite fun to admire & maneuver. It is also the most difficult part of the trail & should be treated with extreme caution. Bear in mind, this hike is only 1.8 miles round trip so "just keep swimming", drink lots of water, take breaks to admire your surroundings and you'll have absolutely nothing worry about! You can dooooooo it! 
After you make your way towards the top, the trail opens up & you are greeted by a KILLER view worthy of some picture taking! (as shown above) 

Keep going, and you'll reach yet another level area that leads directly to the epic destination; Devil's Bridge. Your jaw will likely drop, this is perfectly natural. Just let it happen and prepare to take a walk on the wild side. 

The bridge in it's thinnest part is approx 4-5 feet across so don't get yourself too worked up. I actually did a cartwheel here, and while I do not recommend it as it is a LOOONG way down, I can't help but seek that added adrenaline rush. Now that you are here, take moment to enjoy it and explore, then pull out your camera and document this amazing moment! YOUR VICTORY!! Once you are satisfied and rested up, its time to make your way down with CAUTION. Those natural steps are covered in loose gravel and sand making it easy to loose your footing.
If this wasn't enough adventure for you and your feeling good about seeing more, then just keep en eye out on the way down for the trail that leads you just BELOW the bridge! 

What a view! I highly recommend following the trail that leads below the bridge! Just beware of bees on the way. 

What a view! I highly recommend following the trail that leads below the bridge! Just beware of bees on the way. 

Here you'll get an interesting perspective and even encounter a great opportunity for some mild rock climbing (pictured below) if you are into that sort of thing. All in all, this is an absolute must for anyone interested in a fun and unique adventure that you will likely remember for a lifetime! Happy exploring fellow adventurers! 

Just doing some rock climbing... Can you find me? 

Just doing some rock climbing... Can you find me? 

Please PM me for any questions or concerns. 

West Fork Canyon Trail

AURORA THE EXPLORER does the West Fork Trail Sedona, AZ 

Length: 6.4 miles round-trip approx: 2-3.5 hrs
Difficulty:  Easy-Moderate  3/5
Elevation: Approx 400ft (from 5,320 to 5,660ft)
Directions: 17.5 miles south of Flagstaff (9.5 miles north of Sedona) on paved roads in scenic Oak Creek Canyon. Drive south 17.5 miles south from Flagstaff or north 9.5 miles from Sedona to about halfway between milepost 385 and 384. The trailhead is on the west side of the highway down a paved lane that leads behind a few creekside houses. Park at the Call O' The Canyon day-use area.
Dogs Allowed: Yes (on a leash)
Best Times. Late March - Early September
Horses Allowed: No.

The "Call of the Canyon Recreational Area"

  • Open 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
  • Day-use: $10 per vehicle (up to 5 people)
  • Walk-in, bicycle, bus: $2 per person
  • Passes: The Big Three Pass or the Grand Annual Red Rock Pass will be accepted here for entry to the site. 
The view while crossing the first bridge. Just look at those colors!  

The view while crossing the first bridge. Just look at those colors!  

The West Fork trail in Sedona is a sensational trail that offers a beautiful & relaxing way to beat the heat and give you some truly awe-inspiring sites. Before we get started, let me point out that this is a VERY popular trail with limited parking. I highly recommend you arrive no later than 9:15a to ensure a spot! Info on parking and fees, can be found above.  
When you first start off on the trail you can admire how fairytale forest-like it seems. In the spring migrating songbirds gather here & offer a lovely opportunity for bird watching and listening. One of the first things you will come upon is the beautiful Oak Creek bridge! You can get an absolutely amazing view of the clear creek below.
(As seen on the left)
 Then make your way to the burnt down structures of Meyhew's Lodge. Fun Fact: The first cabin at the site was built by Charles “Bear” Howard in 1870. This place is such a joy to explore! I love imagining what it must have been like to live there & how amazing it looked in it's day. 
 Once you have had your fill explorering the ruins & admiring the beauty of the towering canyon walls looming above, you continue your journey to the creek. Head upstream along sandy trails and be prepared to cross over approx thirteen times. The crossings are relatively simple & even refreshing.  

The walls along the creek something else! 

The walls along the creek something else! 

Looking up at the canyon walls towering above, providing shade. 

Looking up at the canyon walls towering above, providing shade. 

Head upstream along sandy trails and be prepared to cross over approx thirteen times. The crossings are relatively simple & even refreshing as long as it didn't rain recently causing water levels to rise. I def recommend water-shoes or waterproof shoes either way. 

One of the last creek crossings was my favorite. You get the canyon walls, red rock, the beautiful creek & plenty of beauiful green all about! 

One of the last creek crossings was my favorite. You get the canyon walls, red rock, the beautiful creek & plenty of beauiful green all about! 

On the last leg of this pleasant hike, you will run into a, incline of stepping stones, which is simple but may feel moderate nearing the end. Soon after that, you reach the end. The trail will come to canyon walls that close in on you. This is a great time to get some pics, eat lunch, admire how the water has created all the beautiful walls around you. .
From this point, the hike is very challenging, wet and requires an overnight stay.  Please PM me if you re interested in contunueing beyond this point.

Family makes every adventure more fun!

Family makes every adventure more fun!

The end of the trail. Such beautiful walls!! <3 One day I will continue forward,

The end of the trail. Such beautiful walls!! <3 One day I will continue forward,

READY COMICS delivers a MIRACLE!!

There I was, 3am Thursday morning, barely keeping myself together, making the last minute (to say the least) touches on my 2nd Sketchbook... I kept asking myself, "why I am I even doing this? I mean, even if I do complete this, it would be a flippin miracle if I somehow got them printed in time...especially considering comic con is literally JUST 13 HOURS AWAY. UGH!" 

That's right, comic con was HOURS away, and yet...I kept pushing. Er well, that is till I passed out on my desk...again. But, as soon as I woke back up around 5am, I managed to complete the book!!

Without any hesitation, I reached out for a miracle. You never know unless you try right? I certainly didn't come this far just to quite...but to be 100% honest, I didn't think there was any chance of having them in time; MAYBE by Sunday, but most likely Monday. I sent the email to Ready Comics anyway, whom did a lovely job printing my previous sketchbooks.

I wasn't sure what to say, so I went with the most honest wording I could think of.
Email subject; "Sketchbook/Miracle Request"

I explained my situation, then waited... after some time passed I got anxious and gave them a call. The phone was answered immediately & before I knew it I transferred to the right people, who were incredibly kind, and even told me what I thought was impossible...
I was in luck!!!! 
HAAALLLEELLUJAH!!! <--- This seriously started to play in my head! 

I was told to send my files in immediately for review and to my delight and surprise we got the proofs done in just a couples hours. I was finally able to take a deep breathe, and felt my shoulders soften for the first time in several weeks. I found myself in an exhausted state of disbelief & bliss. I couldn't have been more thankful. 

Flash Forward to Friday afternoon and HOLY WOW YOU GUYZ!! THEY ARRIVED AT MY BOOTH AT COMIC CON!! ISN'T THAT AH-MAZING!! Ready Comics blew my mind!! The people working there were fast, attentive, and legitimately care about their customers! They were able to go above and beyond for me and I will forever be thankful! I seriously cannot recommend them enough! They make flipping miracles happen you guyz!! 

Check them out & use code: friend2017
to receive 10% off your next order!! 
http://readycomics.com
https://www.facebook.com/ReadyComics/

 

P.S. To pick up your copy of Aurora's limited edition (numbered) sketchbook, visit;
http://aurorart.storenvy.com

GET THEM WHILE YOU CAN! ONCE THEY ARE GONE, THEY ARE GONE! 

Embracing Change

Change... it's scary, exciting, character building, & as long as you remain true to yourself, well worth the struggle! ;-)  #SeizeTheDay 

Parsons Trail Adventure!

AURORA THE EXPLORER DOES PARSONS TRAIL TO SYCAMORE CANYON

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Length: 8 miles round-trip approx: 3.5-5 hrs
Difficulty:  Easy  2.5/5
Elevation: Approx: 3,700 feet
Directions: Head to Cottonwood, Arizona. Follow the signs to Tuzigoot National Monument and Clarkdale, Arizona. At Clarkdale, turn right (east) at the Tuzigoot turnoff and cross the bridge over the Verde River. Then immediately turn left on Sycamore Canyon Road (FR 131). Follow the road about 11 miles to Parsons Trail Trailhead. The road is passable by sedan when dry but the last two miles can be rough. It is best suited for high-clearance vehicles.
Dogs Allowed: Yes (on a leash)
Best Times. Apri-May and September-November
Horses Allowed: Yes. Only to the 3-mile mark at the third crossing of Sycamore Creek.
Camping. Prohibited during first 4 miles. Only permitted 200 feet north of Parsons Springs. There are no developed campgrounds.

My lil Ryo and I had an amazing time exploring together! 

My lil Ryo and I had an amazing time exploring together! 

Parsons Trail is the perfect day trip for those who aren't looking for an extreme hike, more of just a relaxing adventure with friends and family.
It starts with an absolutely gorgeous view, as pictured above, before you make your descent down a fairly steep drop of about 200 feet from the rim to the canyon floor. If you brought your furry friend with you, please be sure to check the sand because there isn't much shade to start with and let me tell you, that sand gets HOT. Don't worry though, once you reach the bottom, the terrain is mostly level and well worth the hike.
After just over a mile, you will find yourself completely surrounded by lush nature thanks to the natural springs that feed into the creek. The first spring you will come upon is "Summers Spring". Be sure to do some exploring in this area as there is a lovely little waterfall nearby. There is also a variety of wildlife to see so always keep an eye out.  I saw a few wild turkey, millipede, fox, elk, fish, and crawdads, but there are apparently golden eagles, mountain lions, bobcats, badgers, great blue herons and even black bears. How awesome is that?!

The Datura Flower, also known as devils trumpets.  Keep away from pets. 

The Datura Flower, also known as devils trumpets.  Keep away from pets. 

As you continue on your journey, you will feel less and less like you are standing in the middle of a desert, and more like a fairy tale forrest! It's flippin magical! There are butterflies, a beautiful array of flowers running along the path, woodland creatures...Oh! Quick reality check, there is also Poison Ivy and the strikingly beautiful yet poisonous datura flowers growing all over, as well as a few species of rattle snake so keep that in mind while you are wandering about. We are out in the wild after all! 
While I am on the subject, you will come upon a HUGE black rock while strolling, DO NOT TOUCH THE BIG BLACK ROCK! This is home to a plethora of spiders who just wish to be left alone. So let's do them a favor and just ignore the big black rock all together. There is plenty more to be seen after all!

You will need to cross over the crystal clear waters of the creek several times, but you won't get too wet if you are pretty good at rock hopping. The water is shallow so simply walking across is always an option, no swimming necessary. That is until you get to the canyon. That is where you will want to shimey off your hiking clothes and get ready for some play time! 

Before you even reach the canyon, you will likely hear fellow hikers splashing about and having a grand time. Once you see it for yourself though, I hope you are just as awe inspired as I was! Several small caves line the rich red canyon walls and at the base, the perfect swimming hole. The ledges are great for climbing and jumping off from!

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I spent all day here, swimming, jumping, exploring and just feeling completely rejuvenated. All my senses were heightened, I took the time to appreciate the small things, and my troubles felt small and oh so far away. It was so refreshing and inspiring. I feel as though all of my fellow creatives would benefit the most from such an experience. Of course everyone needs to get out from time to time to get back in touch with nature and what really matters.
This trail is an excellent one to start off with! Not too long, not to short, and quite a site to see!  Bring your art supplies, camera, writing book, swimsuit, and most importantly, an open mind! 
Now get out there and experience it for yourself! 

Art created to commemorate the experience. Please support my work on Patreon! www.patreon.com/aurorart  

Art created to commemorate the experience. Please support my work on Patreon! www.patreon.com/aurorart  

HAPPY ADVENTURING!! 
PM ME FOR ANY QUESTIONS OR RECOMMENDATIONS!! 

Let's GET NAKED!!

NAKED BBQ

Because everything is better NAKED right?! 

naked bbq3.jpg

AZ Central calls it the best BBQ in AZ, and I have to agree! This outstanding establishment has been cleverly named not only for your endless entertainment, but to inform you that their meats are not slathered with sauce to mask the decadent flavor of this tasty selection of proteins, but are instead naked and al natural; baring it all just for you! ;-) 

Everyday Naked BBQ opens their at 11am and closes when the meat is gone! Get it while you can! 
They offer a lunch "Special of the Day' for just $10 that comes with a side and drink. This makes it especially easy for someone like me who has difficulty making any sort of decision what-so-ever! Honestly though, you really can't go wrong no matter what you try! The juicy pulled pork and brisket are a MUST and if you happen to get SUPER UBER LUCKY & walk in when they have the "Grand Canyon Sandwich', order two, then call me immediately. *DROOLS* 

They also offer simple, yet oh so tasty sides! The mac and cheese, garlic broccoli/green beans, and cornbread are definitely my favorites. OH! DO NOT forget to order their house pickled onions too! I don't even like onions, but these are delicious!
Also the maple bacon donut...GET IT. No regrets! 
MmmmmmMmmmmMmmmm......Yes...
That's what I am talking about! <3

Now let's get to the staff. I have been so fortunate to have met the owner on several occasions and let me tell you, he and everyone working there are very attentive, polite, and seem to possess a genuine pride in what they offer. I seriously cannot recommend this place highly enough folks!!!

You need Naked BBQ in your life. 
GET NAKED TODAY!! Grab your friends, grab your wife, and grab your neighbor too cause ever'y body's gettin Naked up in here! :-P

P.S. They have some BOMB watermelon tea! 

https://www.thenakedbbq.com
2340 W Bell Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85023

Also coming to Scottsdale! Read all about it below! 
http://www.azcentral.com/story/entertainment/dining/2017/01/20/naked-bbq-obon-sushi-bar-ramen-new-scottsdale-restaurants/96497242/

Pictured above is the mouth watering Prime Rib sandwich  with carmalized onions & horsey sauce on a hella tasty bun. 

Pictured above is the mouth watering Prime Rib sandwich  with carmalized onions & horsey sauce on a hella tasty bun. 

Vlog in the Raw

An honest, 1 take, unedited video... You have to start somewhere right?
I have been desperately needing an outlet for my thoughts and feelings. I spend most days cooped up in my art room alone with my thoughts so this is an outlet for me to unburden myself and keep track of my progress/evolution. I also hope it helps me overcome my biggest weakness, which seems to be focus.
If this video and future videos help you along in your journey to find happiness in some small way, I will have gotten one step closer to my goal. I welcome you to join me in this battle to tame the inner chaos and move in a positive direction. So, without further ado, *Takes a deep breathe* a look at the real, crazy, raw me. ^_^ Enjoy. 

BIG BIG NEWS!!

Not long ago I received one of the most exciting emails I've gotten in a while! 

In Your Dreams Collectibles wrote me & asked if I would be interested in being on the cover of their NEW YORK COMIC CON EXCLUSIVE VARIANT as Flare for Hero Publishing!! 

Me? On the cover of a comic book?! YES PLEASE!! 

First, I looked into the character Flare, & was completely overjoyed! We were the perfect match! She is known as 'The Shining Goddess of the Light' and has photo kinetic powers. She also happens to be a world famous fashion model. It was a match made in heaven! I accepted and got to work organizing the photo shoot right away.

It didn't take me long to scout out the right person for the job! Jason Hahn, master photo editor was the perfect choice! I had the pleasure of working with him once before and the results were truly spectacular! There was a tight time crunch so I was a bit nervous about asking him, but once he heard the details he seemed equally excited! So, we got to work planning right away...

The results...Well, see for yourself....

Ahhhh!! I can't believe that's me!! I'm on a flipping comic book cover! WOOT WOOT!! 
Impossible Dream = Came True

These will be available at New York comic con booth 2741 for $9.99. 
If you can't make it, you can preorder one right now! 
Variant A: http://www.ebay.com/itm/In-Your-Dreams-NYCC-Exclusive-Ltd-50-Flare-44A-Model-Artist-Aurora-OBrien09-16-/201653106999?hash=item2ef3763937:g:Eu8AAOSwIgNXva7C

Variant B: http://www.ebay.com/itm/In-Your-Dreams-NYCC-Exclusive-Ltd-50-Flare-44B-Model-Artist-Aurora-OBrien09-16-/191953257157?roken=cUgayN

With that....WISH ME LUCK! I HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE!! 

Learn more about the amazing Flare & Hero Publishing! 
www.heroicmultiverse.com

See more of Jason Hahn's Photography
www.jasonhahnphotography.com

Information for NYCC
www.newyorkcomiccon.com

Jetset Covergirl Search Continues!!

Thank you all SO very much for each and every vote!! I am exceptionally thankful & proud to have stayed in the top 10 for several weeks now!! It is so amazing to think so many of you care enough to take the time each day to vote. I never thought I could ever be so blessed to have the support of so many amazing people!! It's been a blast sending you my selfie's & personalizing each one. It is the least I can do & I hope it makes you smile as much as it makes me smile! 

I have some exciting news to report! Jetset it hosting an amazing hangar party once the winner of the 2016 Miss Jetset cover model competition is announced, for the TOP 5 models! If I were to make it, myself and my top voter would be able to enjoy exclusive, red carpet experience and an exciting evening of cocktails, live music, raffle prizes, and casino games in beautiful Scottsdale, Arizona. How fun would that be?! 

Let's work hard by sharing, donating, & voting each day so we can not only help a great cause, but make fantastic memories together! Thank you again so much for your support! Happy Tuesday! ^_^ 

Patreon… it is time.

I have had a Patreon site for almost 1 year. I lightly promoted it on flyers, spent countless hours studying how to successfully launch and maintain a Patreon community & reached out to fellow artists about their experiences/opinions of it. I even went as far as to broadcast the making of the Patreon video LIVE on Periscope. 
Yet still…I have not launched my Patreon. 

Why? And WTF is Patreon? 

Patreon is a way to support & engage with your favorite artists. Fans pledge a few bucks per month as a tip, so that their content creator of choice may continue to create & grow in exchange for giveaways & access to patron-exclusive activity feeds & promotions.

So what am I waiting for?!

Well, relying on the kindness & support of strangers can be intimidating. Think about it; You have to put yourself out there on a whole new level. People will choose whether or not to invest in your creative endeavors & ideals. They must judge you. This can be a lot to take in, but by taking this step, you open the doors to so much creative freedom and artistic liberation. As well as ridicule & misunderstandings. You must share your successes, as well as your failures. People may stop believing in you, but you must be confident that you can retain the courage to push on in the face of adversity. You must fail forward. 

I am confident I can do this. You have all helped give me the courage to get to this point. Even going as far as to pm me, to ask how you can support my work. This brings such great joy & purpose to my life! I know what I am supposed to do. I fought it for many years, but I won't anymore. I will be true to myself, and by doing so, I hope to inspire you to do the same. Let's go on adventures! Let's overcome the odds! Let's create stunningly beautiful escapes from the realities of how dark & mundane the world can be. Let's give hope & share our experiences & emotions in wonderfully artistic ways! 

Don't get lost in the darkness like I did. Escape & see the beauty in all the magical little things this world has to offer! I want to show you how to grow through pain. I do this through my art, modeling, & acting. Allow me to show you… 

This Saturday I will FINALLY launch my Patreon. I appreciate any & all support you can give me. Thank you all in advance. I truly could not have done this without you. 

 

CHEERS! 

Jetset Magazine Covergirl Contest!!

I am excited to announce I was asked to compete in the pestigious Miss Jetset covergirl Contest!! At first, I hesitated. I am working my tail off on my sketchbook for Phoenix Comic Con, and have a mountain of projects up in the air already, but once I learned Jetset teamed up with B+ Foundation which helps kids fight cancer through family assistance, research and advocacy. How could I say no! Not to mention the grand prize includes $100,000 in cash and prizes!!
HOLY WOW BATMAN!!

4 years ago, you all shocked and amazed me by helping me win the Betbombs calendar contest and flew me out to St. Barthelemy for the bikini beach shoot! Everyone told me there was no way to win, and that is must be a scam. However, you showed me ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE if you just work hard and believe! For that, I will forever be thankful! You really opened my eyes my friends! <3

Now I would like to be so bold as to ask for your once help again, to make this seemingly impossible task, into a reality! I started the contest late, and have been caught up in projects, but I know we can burst ahead with hard work, determination, and a positive spirit! #Underdog for the win!! Time to blow minds!!

I also just added exclusive rewards to show my appreciation for your vote & support to the B positive foundation. The 1st 25 people to purchase 10 votes will receive a personalized selfie after purchase! Your votes truly makes me smile and I would like to share that with you.

You can vote once a day free or buy votes with a portion of your donation going to the B+ foundation. #goodkarma

What do you say?! It's just 2 clicks away! Help me reach #1!?
https://www.jetsetmag.com/model-search/vote/aurora-obrien

Be Positive Foundation
http://bepositive.org

Jetset Magazine
http://www.jetsetmag.com

Jean Philippe Piter
http://jeanphilippepiter.com

Betbombs
http://betbomb.com

Solis Lavish Designs Fashion Show

Luis Solis is a sensationally talented hair & fashion stylist whom I have the pleasure of calling friend! If you have the honor of getting styled by Luis, have him tell you the inspirational story of how he got started!! His talent and passion can be seen with his effortless gestures and focused, smiling gaze when styling. He is a true hair & styling ARTIST! 

So when Luis reached out & asked if i'd be apart of his show featuring hand-made, Victoria's Secret style wings, glamorous hair and lingerie, how could I possibly say no?!? Not to mention my absolutely DROP DEAD GORGEOUS girl-friend Tayler Leigh V would be walking. That not only sweetened, but sealed the deal! Seriously, she's amazing!! Just look at her! ------------------------------------------------>

Anyways...

6am, the morning of the show, my alarm went off. 7am I finally rolled my happy butt out of bed & made my way to the work out room. After 25 minutes of climbing the stair stepper while watching Victoria's Secret walks on youtube, I looked myself over in the mirror & felt much more confident and appreciative of myself...then decided to add 25 extra minutes on legs and glutes. After that, I was feeling gooooood!

I hopped in the shower a hot mess, and came out as clean as a cats conscious and as smooth as satin. Upon exiting, I drenched myself in coconut oil, gave myself a mani/pedi and was feeling pretty well prepped for the the nights show!  

Upon arrival, I didn't waste any time. I handed my key to the valet, grabbed my badge, and headed upstairs to find not just one, but 2 familiar faces; Tayler and Dave Kelley! We had time to catch up & discuss the interesting circumstances of the show. We laughed, we cried, we thought about leaving, but soon the entire team had gathered and we were ready to head to the prep room! 

We were led just beside the ballroom where we would soon be struttin our stuff on the catwalk!Yeah, on the catwalk, yeah. I do my little turn on the... ♩ ♪ ♫ 
Ok, sorry, I couldn't help myself.

Back on track! I was sat almost immediately to get my hair prepped and set with curls. The process took about an hour. From there I tried on wardrobe, got the wings fitted to my shoulders and munched on some food (yes, we do eat). With the clock ticking, I found myself in the make-up chair with Gilbert, then back to my hair stylist to drop my curls! 2 hours or so passed with great conversation and outstanding styling,  and I was sent back to wardrobe!

I quickly changed and returned to find… EVERYONE WAS FREAKING GONE!!

With confusion and a dash of panic stirring inside, I asked where everyone went, only to find that the show had started! 

I fumbled while fastening the garter to my stockings, took a deep breathe, only to realize I didn't have my heels yet! Damn it! I rushed over, grabbed my heels, & bunny hopped my way backstage.

Turning the corner, I saw the others and immediately found the beautiful Miss Tayler. She gave me a hug and informed me that she had already walked! I asked her for the pattern to which she replied, "The runway is 60ft long & carpeted. Just go up the stairs, pose, walk forward, pose at the T, go to the left, pose, walk to the far right, pose, then walk off. Don't worry, you'll be great!" Before I knew it..
"You, you're up! GO FOR IT!!" 

I stepped out, saw the crowd & felt my heart begin to race! I took a shaky step forward & (thankfully) felt my inner goddess take over from there! My chest lifted, my chin raised, and my hips began to sway side to side with ease. I was in the zone! I missed the 1st pose at the T, but didn't skip a beat. I knew there was nothing to worry about. All eyes were on me, and I was going to give them a show!
 

WHAT A THRILL!!

The crowds reaction was fun, upbeat, and just the energy I needed! I was loving this! Was I nervous? You bet. The way I looked at it though, If I messed up, it would simply make the story of my life that much more interesting. Besides, this was only the beginning. We had a total of 4 wardrobe changes, and 6 style changes. I had to keep calm and focused. 
Just breathe.

Time FLEW by and each walk was exhilerating! Before I knew it, the glorious wings Luis designed were being fastened to my back!! What a dream come true!
I was shuffled along back stage, ducking, dodging and weaving my way to the stage. The wings were massive and the curtain was not going to accommodate them easily. This was going to be close… 
But with some quick thinking and backstage finesse...

Fun Fact: I bent the wings the final time coming out to make a flashier entrance.  I then had hold them up with my arms to keep them from falling forward! XD

Fun Fact: I bent the wings the final time coming out to make a flashier entrance.  I then had hold them up with my arms to keep them from falling forward! XD

The crowd went WILD!! I commanded the attention of everyone in the room and found myself on cloud 9!! 

BEST NIGHT EVER!!!
I am so glad I kept my commitment & stuck out the show! I met so many amazingly talented people and had such a great time working the runway for the crowd! What an experience! I will never forget it! 

P.S. I compiled this brilliant collection of Tayler photos from that night for your viewing pleasure. You're welcome.
She actually leaves for LA this Friday! She's a bit nervous, but I think it's obvious, that she is going to be absolutely great!! 

 Tayler Leigh V #wcw4life

 Tayler Leigh V #wcw4life

cs 15.jpg

PURE photo shoot

Earrings: GORJANA Chloe mini double drop in gold Necklace: KENDRA SCOTT Rayne in bright red

Earrings: GORJANA Chloe mini double drop in gold
Necklace: KENDRA SCOTT Rayne in bright red

All photos are unedited, all natural, raw jpeg, NO PHOTOSHOP. The real me…
Thank you Dave. 

Just days ago, I messaged my dear friend Dave Kelley via Facebook to show him the website I had just launched. This one in fact. I was excited to share it since he recommended whom to use for it. Anyways, we chatted a bit till the subject of availability was brought up. As luck would have it, we both had that sunny Friday afternoon open & decided a quick impromptu shoot would be fun!

Off I went! Like The Flash I was, to get ready! As previously stated though, I had just launched this new site and was getting several messages and feedback. I was absolutely thrilled! Yet also getting ready! So, between finding the sundress, applying natural make-up, touching up my nails, & adorning myself with newly delivered jewelry by Rocksbox, I was returning messages, emails & the occasional phone call.

I was BEOYND excited to be getting such a positive response though! I didn't care about the hectic, rushed feeling. That pressure no longer fazes me. I thrive off of that energy! In fact, I'm glad things happened that way. It gave me a ton of added adrenaline, emotion and a sense of accomplishment that overflowed from within that I could use for the photoshoot! #butterflyeffect

Now, you should know that this is not exactly common in the modeling industry.  Normally, you discuss concepts, wardrobe options, hair & make-up ideas, stylists whom may be available, along with location, compensation, and intended use/release involved; all before nailing down a date for a shoot. However, sometimes you just need to get back in touch with the fun, freedom & beauty of it all! 

It can be quite refreshing for two creative professionals to just go out, enjoy the sunshine (especially before the triple digits are here) and just enjoy the process of creating from time to time. I found it to be so refreshing in fact, that I decided to make a video to forever capture that revitalizing day. I hope it inspires you to enjoy the simple things and get back int touch with what really brings you joy and fulfillment. You may view it down below. 

It's only fair to mention that Dave and I have been working together for about 3-4 years now. We have been on many adventures, from Northern Phoenix to Southern Phoenix, Colorado to California to out on the open ocean!  Long story short, we make quite the team. It is always a joy working with Dave because we are both doing what we love to do! Creating art. 

The results speak for themselves. 
Simple
Fun

PURE.

Video/Modeling by: Aurora OBrien  |   Photography: Dave Kelley Artistics     

 

Desert Romping

It was a sunny Sunday afternoon when I was invited to head out to the desert to test out the body kit Sam just built. I was hesitant at first since I had a full plate already, but quickly decided to live and little and enjoy the lovely weather! Besides, all work and no play right? Oh! Plus, Sunday Fun-day. ;-) 
With that decision out of the way, we simply had to have the breakfast debate…we all know how fun that can be, lol. Moving on to the gas station;  we filled the tank for crazy cheap (AZ has the cheapest gas right now- Woot! Woot!) up and pick up a few bottles of water, because we are going out into the desert after all. Then we were off…
Making our way out of suburban hell & out into open, untouched land.

This was just past the Hassayampa River bed overlooking the many paths that are available. It's such a great feeling being free to choose and wander. Oh yea, I was actually balancing on top of the Suzuki to get this shot! 

This was just past the Hassayampa River bed overlooking the many paths that are available. It's such a great feeling being free to choose and wander. Oh yea, I was actually balancing on top of the Suzuki to get this shot! 

After cruising around for a couple hours searching for a cave we had explored the last time we in the area, we decided to take a break on the side of a random mountain we came across. It wasn't too steep a climb, but we did have to be cautious of rattle snakes and cactuses. I was not appropriately dressed on this outing, sporting shorts with my kicks & ankle socks, but I made the hike fairly easily. I've grown accustomed to these hikes. It was worth the rock climbing towards the top as it was the perfect place to take in the scenery, weather, & vastness of it all.
I actually had just enough reception to periscope the experience & share it with people from all over the world! It was such an incredible feeling/experience! There I was on top of a random mountain, out in the middle of the desert, broadcasting to people in Europe, Russia, and Canada! 
Watch below! 

30 minutes or so passed & we made our way down the mountain back to the Suzuki. We thought that the best part of our trip was over,  but we had no idea what was in store for us. 
As we were following the trail we thought led back, we got a bit turned around and found ourselves taking a different path. We turned a random corner and saw it… DANGER!! 
Hey Lana…Danger Zone! XD -If you get it, you're awesome. 

We ran right into an abandoned mine! It was all collapsed in on itself. Still quite intimidating being surrounded by barbed wire and 'STAY OUT! STAY ALIVE!' signs. 

We ran right into an abandoned mine! It was all collapsed in on itself. Still quite intimidating being surrounded by barbed wire and 'STAY OUT! STAY ALIVE!' signs. 

That wasn't all we saw though…For just as we were making our first turn away from the abandoned mine, we ran into this. VEEERRRY suspicious right?!

There be zombies in them there mines!! All kidding aside, the driver was super cool & was happy to let me snap a few pics of his pimped out zombie response jeep! I think it is so awesome that he took the time to create such an amazing off-road machine. My hat is off to you bud! 

There be zombies in them there mines!! All kidding aside, the driver was super cool & was happy to let me snap a few pics of his pimped out zombie response jeep! I think it is so awesome that he took the time to create such an amazing off-road machine. My hat is off to you bud! 

Sam and I went back & fourth discussing conspiracy theories linking the Zombie jeep to the abandoned mines & laughed at how crazy fun our spur of the moment adventure ended up being. It wasn't long till we found the right trail out and followed it back to the river bed. Once there, we gave the Zuk a break & checked everything to make sure it was in order. I took that time to enjoy the sand between my toes and cool spring air. Since we Arizona people know that…
SUMMER IS COMING. 

I'm so insanly thankful to get the opportunity to go on these simple adventures. It allows me to admire so much beauty and helps to re-inpsire me. The desert is such a harsh environment, yet when you see a beautiful desert flower blooming despite the incredible dire circumstances, it truly is something special to behold. Beauty rising against all odds….I like it.