Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Fate, calm and authenticity

Interesting times at the moment. Fate seems to be happening quite a lot more than usual. Serendipities. Odd events throwing things into my lap. I could mention the hail that fell earlier while I was out, forcing me into a shop and just compelling me to try on and buy a top that I didn't need. Or the boy spending an extra long time swimming and then showering one evening last week, which meant that by the time we got home, husband had had some peace to read the letter I had written after an argument, absorb it and let calm return to the house. My making seems to be going the same way at the moment: I am trying to get lots and lots of work together to show during Arts Week and so quite a bit of making is going on. I have an idea, start to get some wool out for it and suddenly something else altogether is getting made. I wanted to do some lettering in my felt, some beautiful, breathtaking wording, a life-changing slogan, but while I was trying to work out what I wanted to say, this happened:

(Incidentally this is an odd one, I feel really happy with this picture and then other people keep saying  that it will look great when I've finished it. Maybe I need to revisit it with the sewing machine. Or maybe people just need to get over themselves. I bet nobody told Picasso his picture would be great if he put his eyes and noses in the right place.) 

This time for Arts Week I'm branching out and showing a little bit of photography as well as the textiles. It's a gamble and an unknown, which is probably why I'm clinging to the idea that fate has a hand in these things. It's all for a reason. Even if that means I'll have enough greetings cards and postcards leftover to send to people for their birthdays for the next ten years. My amazing shiatsu friend Alexandra,  whose words always carry a great deal of truth in our sessions, and who always manages to point me in the right direction, suggested I get some photos printed onto canvas, and I've done it, with just three pictures. To be honest, I couldn't remember which photos I'd picked. My lovely friend Laura, who I will be exhibiting with, suggested I get my daisy photo mounted to hang with the felted version above, and says she will make a handbag with a daisy on the front to display with it. Great idea, add this to my list of things to do. So imagine my surprise when the photo, on canvas, arrives in the post:

I started making again last week, a sea picture this time, the one that the cat kept sitting on. I had intended something different but this happened:

The photo doesn't quite do it justice; I need to have a fiddle with it as the colours are a bit brash. This is the first time I think I've done a sea picture without any beach on it. At one point I was half thinking about using some sandpaper as a mount for it, to add a bit of beach.  The sea itself has a lot less movement than my usual ones, and there are (apart from the breakers in the foreground) no beads, as I normally use. I wanted to convey something a bit different, and I was reminded of it today, lying on the floor after another shiatsu session with the lovely Alexandra. I felt just the same as I do when I'm floating in the sea when we stay in Brittany, the most beautiful calm and freedom in my head. I told her about this picture, and of the photo that inspired it and a little of the event that inspired the photo: an evening after the people on the beach cleared off for their dinner, an evening of whipping a swimming costume on as soon as the children were in bed and dipping in, floating and flipping, watching little fish swim by, and emptying my brain. That evening a still came like no other, the light had a strange quality about it and you couldn't see where the sea ended and the sky began. Once I'd dried off I took a photo of it. At this point in my writing I'm trying to eke the words out a bit to make more space between my felt and the original photo, so you can't quite see how inadequate my felted version is in comparison to the real thing. But rest assured that in person, and away from the photo, the picture does convey that same feel (in my humble opinion).

By the way, maybe this is the moment to mention that I've recently set up an Artist's Facebook page for myself in a gesture designed to make things a little bit more serious rather than just messing about on the kitchen table, do check it out if you are a Facebook sort of person and like to see what I've been making...

Anyway (she says, continuing to make the space between pictures bigger) I've never really been one for these things but as fate is having a hand in things, why not: Alexandra, who brings me truths and calm, tells me that the time between the solar eclipse last Friday and the next full moon (Google tells me 4th April) is significant and momentous, and that I need to be authentic to myself. I wonder what this will bring...

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