Monday, August 20, 2012

Art is the stored honey of the human soul

In the Blink of an eye a month a year has flown by.  The short weeks of the past month have been spent visiting family, camping and enjoying life.  They have also stirred my creative juices and I’m contemplating things I wish I started a year ago... when I began my year’s hiatus from the 8-5 daily grind of the working stiff, and began that most marvellous journey into motherhood.

Chicken Little will be a year old too soon, and I’ll resume my role in the workforce.  Chicken Little will be taken care of at daycare and the precious few waking hours a day I will have with him will be cherished - being that much more special.  What will likely take a backseat is all the fun creative stuff I’ve been able to do this year...  sadly I’m not ready to be done with fun stuff.  

lovely place to loaf about
©RiverWalker Arts
Maybe it was all the loafing about in a campsite away from the constant reminders of house work needing to be done and guilt about not walking the dog more frequently .... or maybe it was one thing leading to another... but after making my first foray into the fun world of fabric and creating a series of simple rag quilts and accepting that I’m really an impatient seamstress and what I really like is all the wonderful fabric that is out there. (Not that being incapable of sewing a straight line is going to stop me from my dabbling in quilting ).  In fact I knew if I started buying fabric it would become a problem... I deliberately avoided getting into fabric arts when my crystal ball while usually foggy and useless for divining the future showed a huge collection of fat-quarters in store for me, a fortune in fabric just for the beauty of it all. Nowhere to store it, and not enough time to work through it all.

One day after realizing that the inevitable fabric collecting had begun.  I found myself lounging on the sofa at my friend’s place, the lovely owner of  fishskin fabrics (, drinking the splendid coffee she had made me, and discussing how there was more fabulous fabric to be had than one could ever hope to have time to sew with it, much like there are more books I want to read than there is time in my life to read them.  “and wouldn’t it be such fun to design those fabrics” I mentioned. This being as opposed to writing a book, something for which I have no desire - especially given the fact I can’t even figure out how to write a short little story to make into a children’s book. 

But fabric design... well this apparently isn’t so difficult... and so she led me to a place called SpoonFlower.  Oh the wonderful sounds Mr. Brown can do.... er ...  I mean the wonderful places the web can take you....   A website that makes it possible for individuals to design, print and sell their own fabric designs. 

©RiverWalker Arts
A day later... curtsey of some detailed ink drawings I did 10 years ago,  voilĂ . My first fabric design:

The first of what I hope to be many. I envision a whole line of RiverWalker fabrics!!!

Oh and that children’s book I can’t figure out how to write  I did come to the conclusion that, since I sing the Dutch Lullaby “Wynken, Blyken and Nod by Eugene Field (he was an American so it beats me why it’s known as a Dutch Lullaby - but I digress) to Chicken Little at least once every night - it would be a good practice run for me.  I've no idea the copyright on the poem, but I’d like to produce a single copy for me and my Chicken Little.   Maybe I won’t go down in history as a great illustrator but I might just manage to realize my dream and illustrate a children’s story – even if it’s just for use in this house.

"Wynken, Blynken, and Nod one night
Sailed off in a wooden shoe —"
Here are a couple sketches I’ve done towards that particular project.....  the final project will be in watercolours.

"The old moon laughed and sang a song,
As they rocked in the wooden shoe,
And the wind that sped them all night long
Ruffled the waves of dew.
The little stars were the herring fish
That lived in that beautiful sea —
"Now cast your nets wherever you wish —
Never afeard are we";
So cried the stars to the fishermen three:
Wynken, Blynken, and Nod."

Life beats down and crushes the soul and art reminds you that you have one.  ~Stella Adler