Instagram Accounts You Will Not Regret Following


an account of satisfying art-related videos that make you look twice (even when you’re on data)!

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calling all fellow hopeless romantics ! this account features iconic movie scenes that leave a twang in the heart.



oddly enough, this account is a bit of a combination between the former two featured here. while it highlights curiously composed images, it also has some dramatic content. Reko is actually a magazine/art studio in itself, so they also feature some merch here and there.



For context on this post, click here!

For these past few months, I’ve been “using” my net worth model to calculate the net worth of an action before the action is committed.

But let’s be real here. Calculating the net worth before an action committed is basically CALCULATED RISK. 

I realized this in my AP Stats class when we were learning about calculated risk and power. There is such thing as calculated risk- yet only with certain circumstances and lots of information—in a statistical situation, this additional info would include sample size, x-bars, standard deviations, and more.

Tl;dr? It is extremely difficult to calculate risk in everyday situations. 

net worth

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been an introspective person. I’ve always been very conscious of my consciousness, that “voice in my head” that tells me what’s right from wrong, good from bad, etc. (please excuse my use of Descartes’ dualism just this once). Anyway, as a result of my recent introspection, I realized I often subconsciously calculate the “net worth” of my actions (before I act). I thought about what I actual consider when I calculate said “net worth,” which tumulted into a week-long discussion in my head about what contributes to net worth. AND SO, I present you a lovely visual of what I settled on:

I wanted to make a cool diagram that would appear in a psychology textbook or something.

I wanted to make a cool diagram that would appear in a psychology textbook or something.

Ta-da! This is the diagram. I guess I’ll describe what’s going on:

X-AXIS: Net Gain or Loss

Will the action be beneficial or harmful? How much is there to gain? Or is there nothing to lose? I decided that this is very important when it comes to deciding net worth.

Y-AXIS: Net Safety or Risk

Does doing the action require putting your life on the line? Obviously, actions that are SO risky should not be taken.

Ultimately, if an action falls in quadrant I, it should be taken. If it falls in quadrant 3, it should not be taken. Actions that end up in quadrants II and IV should be decided based on their precise location on the graph, whichever direction they are most positive in. Nonetheless, it’s important to note that the consequences of an action should be considered from MULTIPLE standpoints. Is an action risky for your peers? Will your friends lose more than you? In my opinion, net worth is multi-faceted and needs to be calculated multiple times in order to be even remotely accurate.


Often times, when the action is so far in one direction, the weight of the other axis can be disregarded. For example, if something is SO safe, it may not matter if something is lost with the action. OR if anything, the loss will persuade you from not doing the action at all.

We also see that Loss/Risk and Gain/Safety have some relation to each other. For example, something might be risky because there is so much to lose.

I guess one important thing to note is that if an action falls in the origin of the graph, it doesn’t necessarily mean it should be taken. I’d say most origin-actions could be classified as “useless” or not really having a pressing purpose. An example would be trolling someone, cracking a joke, or starting a conversation with a friend.

The nucleus accumbens

The nucleus accumbens

In all honesty, this diagram or something similar probably exists. I am still thinking through how I would precisely quantify loss/gain and risk/safety. I mean, the most accurate way would be to measure how the nucleus accumbens in the brain reacts (particularly for the gain/loss part of the spectrum) but unfortunately, I do not have an MRI scanner at my disposal to test that out. And to be quite honest, this diagram is probably too flawed to even be accurate. BUT I guess if you ever find yourself in a bind, you could try referencing it!

I hope you enjoy this tiny insight of what goes on in my head (which I rarely share). Cheers!


Every. Single. Day. Passes. By. In. Slow. Agony.

i have a bad habit of inadvertently picking the skin on my thumbs when i’m anxious. let’s just say it’s been pretty bad recently…..!!!

i have a bad habit of inadvertently picking the skin on my thumbs when i’m anxious. let’s just say it’s been pretty bad recently…..!!!

It’s March, aka the month notoriously known for ONE thing as a high school senior: college admissions (and rejections). I’M DYING INSIDE. Just a sliver of knowledge, good or bad, would satisfy my ever-expanding hunger to know.

I hate how I’m being consumed by this. I’ve been trying to keep my mind off of this, passing my days reading books, going on Pokemon Go walks with Stephen, playing viola, volunteering, and learning random things like physiology or Latin. Yet at the start and end of each day, I always find my mind trailing back to this.

wholesome volunteering: reading to children! <3

wholesome volunteering: reading to children! <3

life isn’t  Golcanda !!! we are all inherently different and unique!!! the college for me is the college that spots those differences!!!

life isn’t Golcanda!!! we are all inherently different and unique!!! the college for me is the college that spots those differences!!!

I guess what makes me feel remotely better is that seniors from all around the world feel the same. We all feel that heavy burden, that behemoth of questions like “did I do enough?” or “am I good enough?” Better yet, current college students have felt what I am feeling right now. And look at them now- they’re all thriving and happy with their lives (or seem to be lol)!

I have to keep telling myself that wherever I end up is NOT a testament to my hard work and self-worth. To be honest, it was hard to even WRITE OUT the previous sentence, but it’s true. No matter where I end up, I’m proud to say that I’ve done everything I did because I truly wanted to. No rejection or acceptance will ever add or take away from the plethora of things I’ve learned from all of the things I’ve done. Yes, college is important, but it is not nearly the most important thing in life. Nor is it the one thing that determines who I am. I AM ELLA, the art-fanatic, classical-music geek, shiba-lover, meme-enthusiast, edgy-photographer, cheerful-bookworm, wannabe-neurolinguist. NO COLLEGE WILL EVER TAKE THAT AWAY FROM ME.

Tchaikovsky once said, “To regret the past, to hope in the future, and never to be satisfied with the present: that is what I spend my whole life doing.” I guess all I can do for now is hope.

favorite symphonies




  1. Symphony No. 5 - Tchaikovsky

  2. Symphony No. 6 - Tchaikovsky

  3. Symphony No. 4 - Beethoven

  4. Symphony No. 40 - Mozart


  1. A Midsummer’s Night Dream - Mendelssohn

  2. The Tsar’s Bride Overture - Rimsky-Korsakov

  3. Romeo and Juliet Overture - Tchaikovsky

  4. Romeo and Juliet - Prokofiev



In case you’re wondering, the word on the street is true: senior year is by far the most candid, wholesome, and spontaneous year of them all. It’s been crazy. As a photographer, I’ve been trying to capture its essence through various photos and video clips (ignoring aesthetics for the most part AH). I intend to make an entire video at the end of the year, but here are seven shots that really sum up summer to now. Enjoy!

1. me n my dog :’)

taken by my sister when we went on a brief vaca to coronado beach, san diego


2. chinatown

explored sf chinatown with some friends from Stanford Summer Session. someone brought a black and white disposable camera so yes, this was shot on film :)



for ASB we had to chalk the whole school for spirit day! in light of the word “massive” that my friends and i exploited, i decided to make our mark for one last time.


4. hello we are unit 3…



5. jumping into second semester like…

we’re so done HAHA


6. meet B the Beta fish

for ASB secret santa I asked for a fish and believe it or not, i got a fish :-) thank you stephen <3


merry almost christmas!

A Calling from Calder

Alexander Calder's work is



yet beyond




"To an engineer, good enough means perfect. With an artist, there's no such thing as perfect."


i wish my life was like a Calder sculpture. 


Portraits are really cool. 

Recently, I've been really into shooting portraits. In fact, this past week, I went to SF with a few friends and I had the opportunity to shoot a few. Soooooo, I thought I'd like to share some of the photos and inspiration here :-)

To be honest, I used to dislike portraits because I felt that they were a little too staged. At that time, I mainly shot candids and non-human objects/places, so I wasn't used to the idea of staging photos . But after watching a few videos and seeing a lot of great work on VSCO, I decided to give it a try. What really turned me was the power that portraits have- they tell stories in a visual form. One's portrait can say a lot about them, and I would love to be a part of that storytelling process.


The video that changed me - 

If you like what you see, you can find more of my portraits on my VSCO page and favorite portraits/images in general on my VSCO collection

If you'd like me to collaborate on some portraits, feel free to contact me via my contact page


Have a nice summer :-)


Hi! It's been such a long time since my first post, that now it's already summer! So what am I planning to do this summer, you ask? Well,,,, 

1. TOMORROW I will be traveling to Costa Rica with my symphony orchestra! As you probably know, any opportunity to travel means an opportunity to take a lot of photos (can't wait!)

2. In two weeks, I will be heading to Stanford University for High School Summer College, which means I will be living up north for the rest of summer! I know it's going to be pretty different from SoCal, nevertheless, I'm really looking forward to it. 

3. Cool VSCO things... stay tuned.

SO YEAH even though I have A TON of school work to do this summer (ahhhhh AP English reading + SAT Prep + Stanford work), I am going to try my best to keep creating! I definitely want to improve in my photography, videography, and design by the end of this summer. 

I have no idea how many people read my blog, but....




have an artful summer! 

- lifedoings 


P.S. Check out the link below to see my work on The Cut!