All the Highlights from the 2019 Oscars
On Sunday, February 24, and during the annual entertainment industry event, Hollywood’s biggest and brightest stars came out to celebrate last year’s blockbuster movies. And while there were plenty of memorable moments throughout the night that were buzz-worthy for one reason or another, here are the highlights from the 2019 Oscars that everyone will be talking about. (Photos via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Adam Lambert kicked off the ceremony with members of Queen. Who needs a host with an opener like this? Lambert teamed up with Queen musicians Brian May and Roger Taylor for an electrifying performance of "We Will Rock You" and "We Are the Champions," which can be heard in the Freddie Mercury biopic (and Best Picture nominee) Bohemian Rhapsody. And true to their word, they did, indeed, rock us. (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Maya Rudolph showed us what might have been. Okay, we know we said we didn't need a host after that Adam Lambert performance, but that was before we saw three of our favorite SNL ladies together again. Fey, Poehler, and Rudolph reunited to present the Best Supporting Actress Oscar, and although they made it clear to the audience that they were not the hosts, they gave everyone a taste of what the night might have been like if they were.
Among the highlights? Rudolph's Black Panther-themed pickup line: "Hey, Chadwick Boseman, Wakanda plans you got later?" Poehler's relatable Spider-Man joke: "These Spanx are so tight they've entered my Spider-Verse." And Fey's Liz Lemon-esque Netflix quip: "Roma's on Netflix? What's next, my microwave makes a movie?" Rudolph and Poehler even broke out in a rendition of the Oscar-nominated "Shallow" from A Star Is Born, which earned a laugh from the ballad's singer-songwriter, Lady Gaga. Petition to have these three host everything, forever. (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Melissa McCarthy and Brian Tyree Henry outdid every red carpet outfit ever. McCarthy and Henry went all out to present the Oscar for Best Costume Design, which went to Ruth E. Carter for her work on Marvel's Black Panther. McCarthy wore some Buster Scruggs-inspired boots and spurs under a Renaissance-style robe — complete with a neck ruff — that was covered in stuffed rabbits, likely in tribute to Mary Queen of Scots and The Favourite. And Henry wore a Mary Poppins-esque ensemble with Wakanda face paint, to honor the nominees for Mary Poppins Returns and Black Panther. Is there an Oscar for best costume at the Oscars? (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Jennifer Hudson sang her heart out. Hudson delivered the night's first Best Original Song performance, singing "I'll Fight" from the Ruth Bader Ginsburg documentary RBG. Her voice sounded incredible, per usual, and she dressed the part in a satin tuxedo coat that looked a little like the judicial robes that Ginsburg wears as a member of the Supreme Court. (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Bette Midler brought Mary Poppins' magic touch to the stage. Keegan-Michael Key descended from the ceiling of the Dolby Theatre using an umbrella — and some secure wires — to introduce Midler, AKA the Divine Miss M, who delivered a pitch-perfect performance of Best Original Song nominee "Where the Lost Things Go." It was simple but lovely, proving that sometimes all you need is a beautiful song and a beautiful voice to sing it. (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper took us deep Into the "Shallow." Perhaps the most anticipated musical performance of the night was by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, who delivered a stunning rendition of the Best Original Song Oscar winner "Shallow," from A Star Is Born. With no introduction, the pair simply walked onto the stage from where they were seated in the audience, sat down (Cooper on a stool, Gaga at the piano), and started singing. Toward the end of their duet, Cooper joined his costar on her piano stool, and they finished the song side by side. If you need us, we'll be rewatching this on a loop for the next 24 hours. (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Awkwafina and John Mulaney basically auditioned to host a future awards show. Do the Golden Globes need a host next year? These two were among the best presenters of the night when they took the stage to present the Oscar for Best Animated Short. They nailed a bit about their mutual freak-outs over all the A-listers in the room, and they were damn charming while doing it, too. (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Olivia Colman gave the silliest, most delightful speech of the night. The race for Best Actress was a tough one this year, with formidable performances from the likes of Colman, Lady Gaga, Glenn Close, Melissa McCarthy, and Yalitza Aparicio. Close had won every major award leading up to the Oscars, and many people assumed she would win Sunday, too, so it was a surprise to hear Colman's name called instead. And no one was more shocked than Colman herself.
"It's genuinely quite stressful!" she exclaimed as she took the stage. "This is hilarious. I've got an Oscar! I have to thank lots of people. If, by the way, I forget anybody, I’m gonna find you later and give you all a massive snog, and I'm massively sorry if I forget you now."
She went on to thank her director, Yorgos Lanthimos, and her costars Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz, before turning her attention to her fellow nominees. "You could imagine, such hardship to be in a category with these extraordinary women," she quipped. "Glenn Close, you've been my idol for so long, and this isn't how I wanted it to be. I think you're amazing and I love you very much. I love you all!"
After a few other scattered (and very enthusiastic) acknowledgments, she ended with this gem of a stream of consciousness: "Any little girl who's practicing their speech on the telly, you never know. I used to work as a cleaner, and I loved that job. I did quite a lot of my time imagining this. Oh, please wrap up? [Fart sound.] My husband, Ed, my best friend. I love you so much. Twenty-five years you’ve been my supporter. He's gonna cry, I'm not. Lady Gaga!" (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
This Jewelry Designer Infuses ‘90s Hip Hop, Caribbean Spice + Vibrant Hues into Everything She Makes
This Jewelry Designer Infuses '90s Hip Hop, Caribbean Spice + Vibrant Hues into Everything She Makes
Vibrant hues, '90s-era boldness, and raw artisanal beauty — these are just a few of the characteristics that make the work of today's creative crush truly swoonworthy. Named for a potent Caribbean pepper, Tracey-Renee Hubbard's Scotchbonnet is a gorgeous line of earrings and accessories made by hand with love, thoughtfulness and a resolute passion for the art of making.
Anjelika Temple here, co-founder of Brit + Co and super fan of Scotchbonnet! Like so many creative connections these days, I first connected with designer Tracey-Renee when she DM'ed the @britandco IG account and we featured her work in a story roundup of BIPOC makers. A few weeks later, she applied and won a scholarship to our first session of the Selfmade program where Brit and I both had the privilege of mentoring and working with Tracey-Renee on her brand, her business plan, and her mission. Since then she's been awarded a minority creative grant from JOANN Fabrics, and seriously upleveled her production process thanks to a collaboration with Glowforge. (PS: B+C readers can get 20% off their own Glowforge Pro by clicking here!)
Now I am thrilled to be able to share more about this brilliant maker's journey, inspiration and creative process in this edition of Creative Crushin'.
Anjelika Temple: Before we get into learning all about your creative inspiration, tell us a little about your background.
Tracey-Renee Hubbard: I was born and raised in Wisconsin. Yep, lots of cheese and cows. Growing up in Wisconsin right outside of Milwaukee provided me with a surprisingly diverse and eclectic foundation. My parents stressed the importance of academics, but they didn't believe that excelling at school needed to come at the expense of creativity or other hobbies. Art, music, books and softball were a big chunk of my childhood. Crafting and creating have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember.
One of my favorite shows to watch when I was growing up was "A Different World." It was about the college experience at a fictitious HBCU (Historically Black College/University) called Hillman College. Watching that show inspired me to go to Florida A&M University (an HBCU) where I received a BS in Business Management and an MBA.
The world changes quickly and I love learning new things! After completing my MBA program, I studied graphic design, multimedia art and completed the Merchandise Product Development program at FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising) in San Francisco. My academic and professional experiences have given me the opportunity to live and work in lots of interesting places; but for now I am based in the San Francisco Bay area.
Anj: Did you always know that you wanted to be a professional artist/creative?
Tracey-Renee: Yep, but for a long time I was afraid to do it because of the "starving artist" stigma (all lies, btw). I tried to compartmentalize my creative practices as just a "hobby", but when something is truly in your spirit the desire never really goes away…and so now here I am!
Anj: What do you love about making things? What keeps the spark going for you?
Tracey-Renee: I've been inspired to create for as long as I can remember! I've always been fascinated by color, texture, travel and cultural connection. I grew up watching my grandmother quilt, sew and mend garments, I saw my Mom create beautiful home décor and heirloom holiday decorations and spent time in my Dad's workshop. Being surrounded by unique handmade items that hold special stories has fueled my passion for being a designer and maker.
Anj: Like so many artists, you've got a day job in addition to your creative hustle. Tell us about your career path.
Tracey-Renee: My first "real job" was in pharmaceutical sales and marketing. I loved the left brain/right brain mix of processing all the data and scientific information and then finding creative ways to relay that information to doctors and health care providers. That role really opened my eyes to the power of messaging and visual communication tools which ultimately led to me returning to school to study digital design and multimedia arts. I've had fun using my marketing and digital design skills in several different industries. I currently work as the Director of Marketing and Creative Strategy for a candy company. I spend a lot of time working in the digital realm – I think most of us do- and that makes me really appreciate the time I spend making handmade jewelry for Scotchbonnet.
Anj: Tell me more about your brand Scotchbonnet! How would you describe your brand's mission?
Tracey-Renee: I want to make pieces that are cherished - special but not so "precious" that they sit in a box stored away for special occasions that are far and few between. My accessories are known for their bold shapes, bright colors and eye-catching patterns. Each piece is handmade with love (I hope my customers can feel it when they wear their Scotchbonnet accessories)!
Scotchbonnet jewelry has been described as "conversation starters" and I love the fact that they connect people and get them to start conversing. I am excited about elevating those conversations by creating capsule collections connected to social causes; that way the chat can go beyond just "cute earrings, where'd you get them?"
Anj: At Brit + Co, we are enamored with bright colors, patterns and geometric shapes -- and clearly, you are too! How did you hone in on your aesthetic?
Tracey-Renee: I chose the name Scotchbonnet for my jewelry brand because scotch bonnet peppers add a distinctively potent spice to Caribbean food and I feel that my jewelry has the same vibe. My accessories are known for vibrant hues, bold shapes and eye-catching patterns. I am inspired by the flashiness of 90s hip-hop, the simplicity of modern luxury, and the raw beauty of artisan goods from the African Diaspora. My aesthetic continues to evolve based on the things I love, the places I've been and the community I want to serve.
Anj: We LOVED mentoring you + helping your business grow during our first Selfmade session. What were your main takeaways from the program and experience?
Tracey-Renee: Selfmade helped me understand the importance of having a clear vision and trusting my intuition. It can be inspirational watching other entrepreneurs "hustling and winning" on their social media feeds, but without clarity about my vision that "inspiration" can be overwhelming and make things confusing. It's easy to confuse movement with progress – Selfmade helped me craft an action plan that ensures each step builds momentum and accelerates me toward my goals. Selfmade also provided me with a vibrant, uplifting community of founders, entrepreneurs and go-getters.
Anj: When you get creatively blocked or burnt out, how do you reset? Do you have tips you can share?
Tracey-Renee: I take a break. We're inundated with "hustle culture" that can make us feel guilty for taking a break, but at the end of the day we're of no value to anyone when we're burnt out. When I have a creative block I usually log off for a while… there's this duality with the internet where on the surface it seems to be an endless pool of inspiration, but in reality everything that's on the internet has already been filtered or curated by someone else. Sometimes it's helpful to see things through a new lens and find inspiration in ("real" physical) books, at a museum or out in nature. Seeing things in a new light from a different angle can be a really refreshing creative jolt.
Anj: What does your workspace look like? What tools do you use and how has it changed over the years?
Tracey-Renee: I'd describe it as "choreographed chaos". It's organized enough so that I can be efficient with the administrative parts of my business like: inventory management, packing and shipping. It's creative enough so that it still feels inspiring, and it's tidy enough that it doesn't feel overwhelming to sit down and start working. It smells like coconut or tropical fruit (thanks to my candles) and it sounds like hip-hop, dance hall, soca or afrobeats.
The primary mediums I work with are wood, paint, glass beads and recently brass. With that being said my paint brushes, needle & thread and jeweler's saw are always within close reach. The most recent addition to my studio is my Glowforge Pro 3D laser printer; it is a game changer! It shrunk my product development cycle time infinitely. Prior to the Glowforge the process was time consuming and costly; now, I can literally "print" a new design within minutes of sketching out an idea. It's also been awesome when it comes to inventory management and sustainability. I no longer have to worry about over-producing or wasting materials; I can make exactly what I need right when I need it without any waste. The Glowforge can make millions of things and I'm excited about trying new design ideas in the future. I have a ton of sketches and inspo photos on my magnet board and in my notebooks waiting to be explored. (ICYMI: B+C readers can get 20% off their own Glowforge Pro by clicking here!)
Anj: What advice do you have for emerging artists and designers just getting started? What advice do you have for creatives struggling to find their unique voice?
Tracey-Renee: Start with your "why" and not your "what". Your "why" will be the secret weapon that competitors will never be able to touch. Once you have that part figured out; dive in! I think that now is a really exciting time for creatives. The rise of entrepreneurship powered by social media has removed a lot of barriers that used to make creative careers seem out of reach. Protect your work, but don't be afraid to put yourself (and your stuff!) out there. Connect with other artists and build a community, it's so important to have a sounding board for difficult times and a crew with whom you can celebrate your successes.
Anj: What's next for your brand?
Tracey-Renee: Scaling and growing in a way that feels authentic. I have new colors and new products coming soon and I am super excited about that! My upcoming premium capsule collections are close to my heart; designing jewelry inspired by social causes and having a "give back" component means the world to me. I want to keep having fun with my brand, sharing joy with fun colors and patterns and infusing love into each handmade piece.