Meet Mirrors Me, The Woman Who Turns Selfies Into Masterpieces

When we think of selfies, we often think of lifeless self-portraits absent of anything but surface-level meaning. But within this form lies the potential for a transformative canvas, which artist Mirrors Me (aka Helen Meldahl) uses to turn selfies into memorable pieces of art.

Setting the stage by drawing on the mirrors used in the photographs, Meldahl turns selfies into colorful adventures, fairy tales, and iconic moments:

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Jumping into bed to make sure that the monsters don't grab your feet and pull you under

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Happy international coffee day..!What are you having today..?????

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When in deep waters.. ✨✨

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Getting creative for a worthwhile cause this month! -excited to doodle with WWF????????????

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Sometimes, NYC cab drivers are the best therapists

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Happy Sunday from the Mushroom Kingdom.. #SuperMario

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Instagenie. Hadde vært en himla sweet App nå før jul.. #app#innovasjon

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Spring has sprung !????????☀️ #mirrorsme

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Hand over the Skittles..

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???????? Love to say it, hate to hear it…

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Putting my Redwood Forest Lip Crayon by @burtsbeesus to use!❤️????#doodling #delightup #ad

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But at least it's Friday.. #happyweekend #mirrorsme

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But first….

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Will you join me on Saturday?????#EarthHour ???????????? @wwfnorge @WWF #slukklyset #mirrorsWWF

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????????✨✨????????

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Tror det skal være nesten 300 virituelle nusser her????

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"The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud" -Coco Chanel

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Absolutely ridiculous xx

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What We Loved This Week, Apr. 3 – 9

Costa Rica’s gorgeous free-roaming dog shelter, a 20-year-old Marilyn Monroe before fame, lost in the madness of IKEA, a dogs-and-humans dance-off, and 23 inspirational Maya Angelou quotes.

Young Marilyn Monroe

Image Source: So Bad So Good

Rare Photos Of A 20-Year-Old Marilyn Monroe

Young Marilyn Monroe 2

Image Source: So Bad So Good

Before Marilyn Monroe became an international icon, she was known as Norma Jeane Mortenson. In 1945, a 20-year-old Norma met photographer André de Dienes, who became her lover and travel partner. The two began to work together as photographer and muse, which eventually resulted in these incredible black-and-white shots that helped Norma become the Marilyn Monroe we know today.

Check out So Bad So Good for more stunning shots of the young, makeup-less Marilyn Monroe.

Young Marilyn Monroe 3

Image Source: So Bad So Good

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Man-Eaters And Monsters: The 15 Weirdest Freshwater Fish Ever Caught

For over 30 years, extreme angler and host of River Monsters Jeremy Wade has been scouring the world to uncover the world’s weirdest river fish. Seen far less often than oceanic fish due to the murky, low visibility nature of their habitats, many of the beasts he hauls out are being caught on camera for the very first time.

Here, he talks All That Is Interesting through 15 of the weirdest river fish he’s ever caught, from 280 lb. stingrays and man-eating catfish to giant piranhas and a fish that changes sex:

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Stingray

Stingray

“This was in Argentina, in the Paraná river. Stingrays won’t generally try to cause a fatality, but if you step on one, they take exception to that — it’s pure self defense, they’ll stab you in the foot. As you can see, it’s pretty well camouflaged, too.

“I estimated this one’s weight at around 280 pounds, which is ridiculous. Catching this was the longest it’s ever taken me to get anything in — ten minutes short of four hours. There’s no finesse to bringing in a stingray, you’re just using very heavy gear and trying to break the suction that it has with the bottom.”

Congo Tiger Fish

Congo Tiger Fish

“This fish is only found in the central part of the Congo river system, which is a place where nobody really goes from the outside world, so most people don’t know about it. It’s related to piranhas — it’s a giant piranha, really; they can grow to the size of a large person. The teeth on this one are an inch long, which is about the same size as the teeth on a 1,000-pound great white shark.”

Giant Mottled Eel

Giant Mottled Eel

“This was in Fiji. Eels are very interesting — they’re one of the few fish that are able to survive in fresh and salt water, migrating between the two. A lot of people know about salmon swimming into rivers to breed, but these freshwater eels do that in reverse — they live in rivers, but then they go down to the sea to breed. Nobody quite knows where they go.

“There were stories about these eels grabbing people, which is why I was there, investigating. I think they probably have grabbed people, but the reason a lot of fish do that is that they don’t know they’re grabbing a person. If there isn’t good visibility in the water, they just see something in front of their face, which would normally be a small fish. On occasion it might be somebody’s foot, but they don’t know that in advance.”

Sawfish

Sawfish

“This is a freshwater sawfish. It’s about seven feet long, but it’s only a juvenile — it’s believed they grow up to 20 feet long, but the adults are never really seen, as they live out in the ocean. This one was in West Australia. Sawfish used to be quite well distributed worldwide, but they’ve declined very sharply because it’s so easy for them to get tangled up in a fishing net. A commercial fisherman is not going to take the time to untangle it, they’ll just kill it.”

Freshwater Drum

Freshwater Drum

“This is known locally as a Basher in Guyana, which is on the Northern fringe of South America. What’s very interesting about these is that they make a sort of grunting noise under the water — it’s the second weirdest noise in nature, after Howler Monkeys. If you’re in the boat, you’ll hear this growling sound, almost like a kettle boiling. If you didn’t know what it was, you’d think you were having auditory hallucinations.”

Goonch

Goonch

“This is a photo I try to get withdrawn from circulation, because it looks slightly questionable! It’s from India, up in the foothills of the Himalayas, in a tributary of the river Ganges. I’d been hearing these stories about people disappearing, with something pulling them under the water. There are no crocodiles there, and it’s not a python, a river dolphin, or a bull shark, so this was the likely candidate.

“The water’s very muddy, so these fish just grab whatever tends to move in front of their face. Fish tend to do the same as when you throw a dog a bone — it will move to the corner of the room and its basket to avoid competition from other dogs. Fish will often grab something, then turn and head off to deep water. I think that’s what’s going on when someone gets their foot bitten.

“These things don’t have much of a brain, but if it did grab someone’s foot and then swim to deeper water, you’re not going to easily get yourself out of that grip — unusually for catfish, they have very long, pointy teeth and very strong jaws.”

Giant Siamese Carp

Giant Siamese Carp

“This was from Thailand, where there are a lot of stocked fisheries — people create a lake and then fill it with species from around the world, you wouldn’t catch these in the wild there. Normally a carp’s mouth droops downwards, as they tend to take things off the bottom, but this is like a carp with its mouth on upside down, which is indicative of feeding on stuff that’s in the middle of the water column, or maybe on the surface. They’re big; they can grow to over 200 pounds.”

Lamprey

Lamprey

“This was in Lake Champlain, on the border between Vermont and New York. It’s a very primitive fish — there is question as to whether it’s even really a fish, as it has no backbone and no jaws, just a sucker with teeth in it. In the middle of the sucker is a tongue, and the tongue’s got teeth on it as well. The way they normally operate is to bore into the skin of other fish and drink the bodily fluids.

“I had one of these stuck to my neck to experience what it was like. It’s a very strong suction, and if you wait a couple of seconds the teeth will start to penetrate. When you pull them off, you end up with about six inches of skin projecting sideways from your face. Then it leaves an embarrassing mark that you have to explain away to somebody.”

Golden Dorado

Golden Dorado

“This was caught in the river between Argentina and Uruguay [Río de la Plata]. They have big, very powerful jaw muscles and teeth. The story we were investigating there was about a young lad who had part of his testicles bitten off, and these were the likely culprit.

“Again, it probably wasn’t intentional — we’re talking low visibility, and people there prepare their fish at the side of the river and throw the guts in. Other fish in the river get used to having a free meal in certain places, so they bite first and ask questions later. When you see something wiggling around under the water, you dive in and take a bite!”

Longnose Gar

Longnose Gar

“This is from Lake Champlain. I caught this fly fishing, which is quite weird. It’s a very ancient type of fish. They’re able to come to the surface and gulp air down, which enables them to live in water that’s very poor in terms of oxygen. It’s a survival mechanism that enables them to live in conditions other fish can’t survive.

“These aren’t dangerous to people, but there is a larger species of gar in the US called the Alligator Gar, which grows to at least 300 pounds, and there are stories of people being bitten by them.”

Kaluga Sturgeon

Kaluga Sturgeon

“This was in the Amur river in the far east of Russia. What’s unusual about these is that they’re predatory: A normal sturgeon mouth is just a tube that hangs down to suck things off the bottom, but this one’s mouth extends forwards, like a catfish. These fish are now very scarce because they’re fished for caviar.”

Japanese Giant Salamander

Salamander

“This is in the Kamo river in Japan. I had it by the tail, but they’re very flexible and I was very worried that it would reach around and bite me — they have immensely sharp teeth. It would be a nasty bite. They don’t encourage you to molest these creatures, they’re quite rare — I was working with a scientist here to help tag them.

“I was especially terrified in that moment because I’d tied a bag of rocks to my waist as a makeshift weight belt, to help me get down to the depth I needed. As I was running to the shore, I felt something banging my legs and completely forgot about it — I was entirely focused on this thing I’m holding. I actually thought something else had come out of the rocks and was coming after me. So I’m screaming this gibberish, which made it very dramatic, but it was just my bag of rocks…”

Queensland Groper

Queensland Groper

“In polite company, this is called a Grouper, but Australians actually call it a Groper — that’s Australians for you. I was fishing for bull sharks and caught this by accident in the mouth of the Brisbane river. Groupers are one of the [species of] fish that can change sex: they can change from female to male. If there’s one male and lots of females, if the male is removed, one of the females — the biggest, most dominant one — will become a male.”

Redtail Catfish

Redtail Catfish

“These are normally found in the Amazon, but this one was caught in a lake in Thailand — they’re really into their exotic fish there. About a third of this fish is head — it’s got a massive head and a very big mouth. In the Amazon, there are stories of these things swallowing babies, thanks to the size of the mouth.”

Wels Catfish

Wels Catfish

“This lives in Europe, which is quite a surprise. People tend to think that all these giant fish live in exotic, faraway places, but I caught this in Spain. It’s probably 160 lb. and seven feet long. It has a very distinctive bite mark — the teeth are small but close together, so it looks like a file, and they will leave a slightly curved, bleeding mark on the leg, maybe ten inches long.

“The interesting thing about these fish is that they’ve been known to bite people even when the water’s clear and they can see that it’s a person. The reason is because they’re defending their nests very vigorously. If someone swims too near the nest, they’ll bite just to warn them off. For people who it’s happened to, it’s pretty terrifying, because of the shock, the pain, and not knowing what on Earth bit them.”

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33 Stunning Frida Kahlo Photos And Facts

To know Mexican artist Frida Kahlo is to understand the physical suffering she endured. First, she contracted polio at a young age, which withered one of her legs. And that wasn’t even the worst of it.

At age 18, Kahlo endured a bus accident that propelled a metal handrail through her hip, tearing through her pelvis, and exiting through her vagina. The collision also crushed her foot, fractured her leg in 11 places, and severely damaged her spinal cord, among other injuries.

But it was during the initial year spent recovering from this accident that she first put brush to canvas, and let people witness her excruciating pain through art.

And it is both this tumultuous life and the brilliant art it inspired that are illuminated in the fascinating Frida Kahlo photos, paintings, and facts below:

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Frida Kahlo Photos Childhood

Kahlo realized that after she was diagnosed with Polio, her parents gave her more attention than they had previously. “My papa and mama began to spoil me a lot and love me more,” she told psychology student Olga Campos, who interviewed Frida for a book she intended to publish.

Kahlo had a loving relationship with her father, but showed no warm feelings toward her mother.

Image Source: Rubi Joselin Ibarra and Arturo Alfaro Galán

Frida Kahlo Photos Seated

Kahlo was enrolled in the National Preparatory School at age 13, where she was one of only 35 girls in a student body of 2,000.

Left, Kahlo in 1926, by Guillermo Kahlo.

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Frida Kahlo Life Holding Statue

Kahlo's parents sent her to the school after they found some letters exchanged between Kahlo and her former teacher, Sara Zenil, who had instigated an inappropriate relationship with the young girl.

Image Source: Casamérica

Frida Kahlo Life Diego Portrait Pose

It was at the National Preparatory School where Kahlo met her future husband, Diego Rivera.

Kahlo was 15, Rivera, 36. He was a famous artist in his own right, and Kahlo fell for him instantly. She reportedly told her school friends that someday she would have his babies. Pictured: Kahlo and Rivera in 1930.

Image Source: La Veu del País Valencià

Frida Kahlo Life Androgynous Suit

In this family portrait, an 18 or 19 year old Kahlo is dressed in a suit with slicked back hair, circa 1926. This was Kahlo’s way of expressing her somewhat androgynous identity while also covering her polio-withered leg.

Image Source: Libby Rosof, Vicente Wolf Photography

Frida Kahlo Life Apron

Kahlo’s boyfriend at the time of the bus accident, Alejandro Gómez Arias, was with her when the accident occurred.

In true Kahlo style, even this tragedy seemed surreal. Of the accident, Arias has said: “Someone in the bus, probably a housepainter, had been carrying a packet of powdered gold. This package broke, and the gold fell all over the bleeding body of Frida.”

Image Source: Universidad Carlos III de Madrid © Archive Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, Banco de Mexico

Frida Kahlo Life Easel Painting

Starting to paint during her recovery, most of Kahlo’s works were self-portraits. "I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best," Kahlo said.

Image Source: Universidad Carlos III de Madrid

Frida Kahlo Life Self Portraits

Kahlo's obsession with self-portraits may have begun with her father, Guillermo's tendency to photograph her often. Today, one of her most famous paintings is a double self-portrait named The Two Fridas.

Image Source: Rubi Joselin Ibarra

Frida Kahlo Life Diego Malu

Kahlo and Diego Rivera reconnected in 1928. She showed him her paintings and he was impressed – and assured her that she was very talented.

Pictured: Kahlo with Diego Rivera and Malu Block, daughter of the politician Luis Cabrera.

Image Source: Carl Van Vechten

Frida Kahlo Life Odd Couple

Wikimedia CommonsThey married the next year, beginning what would be a highly tumultuous relationship.

Frida Kahlo Life Shawl Jewelry

Very involved in Mexican politics and the Communist party, Kahlo admired these same interests in her husband, who was part of a post-revolutionary movement known as Mexicanidad – the rejection of Western influence.

Image Source: Guillermo Kahlo.

Frida Kahlo Life Chair Pose

FlickrKahlo was proud of her prominent eyebrows and trademark lip hair, even grooming them with special combs and including them in her self-portraits.

Frida Kahlo Life Henry Ford Hospital

Over the years, Kahlo became more seasoned in painting, using her three miscarriages or abortions as fodder for some of her most emotional work, as in the 1932 painting "Henry Ford Hospital," above.

Image Source: Enrique Arias.

Frida Kahlo Life Wild Hair

FlickrThe bus accident led to Kahlo having difficulty conceiving or bearing a child, but some say that even if she would have been physically able to bear children, she was not psychologically stable enough to do so.

Pictured: Kahlo in New York, 1938.

Frida Kahlo Life Red Shawl Diego

In her diaries, she admits to being obsessed with Rivera. “Diego in my urine— / Diego in my mouth / —in my heart, in my madness, in my sleep . . .” she wrote.

She even filled Rivera’s bath with toys and bathed him like the child she never had.

Image Source: left, Beate Knappe and Koiart66

Frida Kahlo Life Smoking Portrait

FlickrKahlo and Rivera both had many extramarital affairs, once even with the same woman. Rivera often bragged of Kahlo’s relationships with women, but was jealous of the ones with men.

It was Rivera’s affair with Kahlo’s sister that sent Kahlo into a depression, during which she cut off most of her hair.

Pictured: with self-portrait of Diego Rivera, circa 1945.

Frida Kahlo Life Vogue

Wikimedia CommonsAfter Rivera’s affair with Kahlo’s sister, they divorced, only to get remarried again about a year later.

They often lived separately after that, but most of the time still adjacent to each other.

Pictured: Kahlo on a 1937 "Señoras of Mexico" photo shoot for Vogue magazine.

Frida Kahlo Life Laughing Red Shawl

Kahlo is rumored to have had affairs with some very high-profile people — among them artist Georgia O’Keeffe, entertainer Josephine Baker, singer Chavela Vargas, and photographer Nickolas Muray (credited with this photo) just to name a few.

Pictured: left, Kahlo with Chavela Vargas.

Image Source: Nickolas Muray and Rael Garcia Arnes.

Frida Kahlo Life Gazing Ball

In 1937, Kahlo and Rivera helped exiled Soviet communist Leon Trotsky and his wife by providing them asylum in Mexico. Kahlo and Trotsky had a brief affair, which upset Rivera immensely.

Pictured: in Coyoacan, circa 1938.

Image Source: Libby Rosof, Vicente Wolf Photography Collection

Frida Kahlo Life Flowers

Kahlo’s health continued to deteriorate due to complications from her accident and childhood polio. She had already had several toes amputated due to gangrene, and suffered from ongoing fungus infections in her right hand.

Pictured: Kahlo on a boat ride in the canal gardens of Xochimilco.

Image Source: Libby Rosof, Vicente Wolf Photography Collection.

Frida Kahlo Life Studio

With Kahlo’s health on the decline, she had several more surgeries, furthering the attention she got when going under the knife. In her dramatic variation of Munchausen disorder, she turned her hospital stays into virtual parties.

According to Amy Fine Collins, "Frida exhorted her guests to look at her oozing sore, and when doctors drained it, Hayden Herrera wrote, she would 'exclaim over the beautiful shade of green.'”

Image Source: Libby Rosof, Vicente Wolf Photography Collection

Frida Kahlo Life Balcony Still

According to Collins, by 1939, Kahlo was drinking a bottle of brandy a day.

Image Source: Daniel Wold.

Frida Kahlo Life Parrots Portrait

Kahlo once said in a letter to a friend, “I drank because I wanted to drown my sorrows, but now the damn things have learned to swim.”

Image Source: Flickr

Frida Kahlo Life Diego Bed

Here, Kahlo can be seen reclining in bed with Rivera, sometime between 1942 and 1945. Kahlo is often regarded as a feminist icon, but it seems that she was dependent on her husband in a way that would make some feminists uneasy.

Image Source: Chester Dale

Frida Kahlo Life Poor Little Deer

FlickrShe also tended to paint herself as a quiet, suffering individual. Such a sentiment can be seen in this 1946 painting, "The Wounded Deer."

Frida Kahlo Life Water

FlickrIn 1946, Kahlo endured a painful surgery to fuse vertebrae in her spine.

Frida Kahlo Life Broken Column Wheelchair

Here, we can see Kahlo after the operation. Of the doctor who performed her surgery, she wrote, “He is so marvelous this doctor, and my body is so full of vitality.”

Image Source: Flickr

Frida Kahlo Life With Dog

When her diet of cigarettes and sweets caught up with her and her teeth started to rot, Kahlo had two sets of custom dentures made; one with diamonds and one with gold.

Image Source: Universidad Carlos III de Madrid

Frida Kahlo Life With Fawn

FlickrIn 1950, Kahlo had more surgery on her spinal column, as it was determined that the doctor she’d liked so much fused the wrong vertebrae.

The incision sites became abscessed, and the procedure had to be done a third time. Kahlo was in a hospital bed for more than a year.

Frida Kahlo Life Black And White Stamp

Wikimedia CommonsThe last of her 30-plus surgeries was the amputation of her right leg in 1953.

Frida Kahlo Sitting Braid Painting Monkeys

Frida Kahlo died on July 13th, 1954, not long after the amputation. Records show that cause of death was a pulmonary embolism, but many insist that it was suicide by overdose of painkillers.

Image Source: Sandra Gonzalez and Edward Weston

Frida Kahlo life diary pages

As further proof that Kahlo committed suicide, this quote was found in the pages of her diary, "I hope the exit is joyful — and I hope never to return — Frida".

Image Source: Sonja Alves

Frida Kahlo Life Street Art Leaves Portrait

Her legacy lives on: On an individual level, people connect with Kahlo’s portrayals of feeling damaged and alone.

At a broader level, Californian Chicano artists have been incorporating her image into murals since the 1970s as a way to celebrate her work as well as their own heritage.

Image Source: Flickr

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