Falling headlong,

Barthélémy d' Eyck 1442 - 1445 Still life with booksSomewhere there must be a Venn diagram that shows people who read, and people who don’t, well I am in the section where they live to read. Is that strange to you? Possibly not, since you are reading this blog post. Lately my time has been increasingly devoted to my hobby (illustration), since I am getting used to the new freedom that a woman without a real job but with a family begins to enjoy on the imminent stretching of wings by the adult offspring. I say that with tongue partly in cheek, since I worked full time in a very busy environment with a responsible paid job which I eschewed in favour of bringing up a family. I never regretted a moment, though sometimes I would have like to have gone back to work for a) recognition of my talents b) a rest and c) some of that dirty lucre. Oh well, we are where we are, self respect diminished to non-existence, a rubbish wardrobe and a knackered spirit. Boys are good though. I digress, this is about reading, or what happens when the lights go out? My reading gene has been hijacked by some monstrous atrocity, and I want it back. I’m not saying I don’t read, just that I struggle to maintain the same enthusiasm for it. I will not give up however, because who am I without a book to shape my thoughts? Beg my affection?
It does occur to me, sometimes, that there are people inhabiting this planet with me who do not care for reading. I know, shocking, it upsets me even to consider. Should I be evangelising reading? Perhaps I should. I have helped out in the local school with the juniors, does that count? I don’t want people to just read, I want them to eulogise about what they read, to fall headlong.

“The reader became the book; and summer night

Was like the conscious being of the book.” 
― Wallace Stevens

 

I am not a preacher though, I have no talent for conscription and fully hold with the idea that  the world is improved by diversity  as opposed to homogeny.  So if those non readers prefer kayaking or climbing mountains, football or the society of naturists, so be it.  I shall continue to risk everything in the pursuit of the alchemy of the written word, and hope to be transported to foreign landscapes and impossible times by wizards and wordsmiths.  See you there.

Image is Bartheleme d’Eyck c 1442 , courtesy of the Rijks Museum.

If you are interested in owning a reproduction of his beautiful painting, it is incorporated into a variety of products on my Society 6 site, which is linked on my home page.

 

 

Belated but then that’s me

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/04/05/daily-prompt-express-yourself/

 

Not sure If I have got the handle on this but I shall have a go anyway.  The idea is to explain how I express my creativity; well it took me some time to find the thing that really started to unlock what I thought I lacked – imagination.  I had always been a voracious reader, and hated the fact that I did not have a visual imagination, having loved looking at art since forever. Anyway, being a reader helped because it connected me to creative imagination, and now I have found my niche – I love creating the right occasion for the written word and image to meet, I am a sort of match maker in my mind. I create small handmade books that reflect my curiosity , and my penchant for nuggets of treasure. So now I spend most of my time finding the right images and the right words to spend a little time together. When I;m not doing that, then I am playing with my own images from photography , or from famous paintings and having fun in photoshop. And  when I’m not doing that I come over here and blog. Simples. If you look at my blog, and I know you will, then have a browse through the pages I have made which illustrate some of the things I have just been telling you about!! Lovely to see you, have fun and be kind.

More words count less.

Tao Te Ching – Lao Tzu – chapter 5

Heaven and earth are ruthless;
They see the ten thousand things as dummies.
The wise are ruthless;
They see the people as dummies.

The space between heaven and earth is like a bellows.
The shape changes but not the form;
The more it moves, the more it yields.
More words count less.
Hold fast to the center.
(translation by Gia-fu Feng and Jane English)

Skye by Anne Corr

Crafty by the minute.

9584137_10919191_lz

I had a friend knock on my door today, full of modern day fury at an annoyance that was the final straw to break the camel of the day’s back.  It made me stop and think for a moment.  My husband too has been suffering from some of this common malaise.  Our world where we live is to the brim with stress. Everywhere I look I see people are struggling to manage a stress full existence.  So where does my craft come in?  Simple, it occurred to me that I choose to make things because it feels good.  It makes sense to me in a world of complexity where alot of things make no sense whatsoever – how the local authorities spend our money, how the corporate institutions gamble , how corporate companies are allowed to default on tax bills,  the list is endless.  Making something slows down your world – you have to give your full attention to something you care about.  It distances you from all the anxieties that threaten to overwhelm, there is a reason for occupational therapy in healing institutions.  The brain is active on something that contains positivity.  And it doesn’t end there – it connects me to other crafters – I only buy from small producers now , whenever possible.  If I want an electric toothbrush I have to go to one of the retailers, but you know what I mean.  It feels good to choose a gift for a loved one that is specific to them, and I can do that more easily with makers who are happy to tweak and change details to accomodate my wishes.  Suddenly its a conversation, an exchange with real value.

And when I sell something I have made, invariably I get a wonderful feedback that puts a smile on my face for days.  It’s a life-enhancing loop.

So what I want to say today is have a go – try making something, anything – motorcycle maintenance would work too, anything that grabs you, do it. I can bet your bottom dollar you won’t regret it, even if it looks more like something your Auntie threw away, it’s fun, and everyone has to start somewhere!

And I want to say thank you to all my customers, and to everyone who buys handmade. Thank you.

Home

You think, you like to think
home is where you began;
but home is not always
at the beginning.
Sometimes
the journey home begins
in ummarked territory.
The familiar is just- that,
but it is not home. The
heart knows it, the blood knows it,
skin knows it.
Desole, desole -
Not knowing
you are homeless, not
understanding that stationary and
rooted is not the same thing. The
heart hunts a home, it stalks in
unsavoury places , attempts
ingratiation, will accept
stopping stages until
it makes it mark.
Home is not a hearth,
not a mother, nor a father, sister,
brother. It is sensate, innate, lacking the
cognition of recent evolutionary
progress. Home is prehistoric,
a reaction in the gut. You cannot
choose.

 

Willima Frazers 19th centrfrf

My words, William Hazlitts cosmography.