I wanted to make something very special for my first grand child. I did not know the gender and I am not of a particularly practical bent but had fairly clear ideas about what I wanted my special creation to say. It was to convey profound love from grand parents who lived a long way away. It was to provide a new mother with the knowledge that her own mother was always there at the end of the phone, sending love, remembering those first crazy months.
I am one of two girls and had two girls of my own so struggled a bit to imagine having anything but a grand daughter. I hoped that if the baby was a boy, at least his mother would appreciate anything a tad too feminine! On a run, as has been the way lately, the image of what I wanted to make came clearly and I loved the very meditative process of making my angel’s wings/ arms. Laying each feather with a thought of love and a wish for joy for our new little person and the new family. I used some of Helen Breil’s texture stamps and clear Kato liquid mixed with a little acrylic for the glaze which I applied after the preliminary baking. She was mounted on Nepali lokte (daphne) paper;
Our precious new angel, Zoe Margaret, is now just under one week old and I have been living with her and her besotted mum and dad since her birth. I have one more week of this bliss and then will rely on the wonders of modern technology for a while until my next visit. I was describing to my daughter how we would have to take photos, take the film to the processor to get them developed and post them to far away family to share those precious moments and I think it was genuinely hard for her to imagine a world where the connection was so slow. We sometimes bemoan modern technology and social media but four great grand parents are now asking for more pictures, more videos, more Instagram shots of this amazing little girl.
This blog does not usually contain family photos but as every grand mother I know would understand, I am now a totally biased, somewhat boring, overwhelming Zoe-centric human being. I do not for a second take for granted my good fortune in being here to meet and get to know this little angel; to hold her and to see my daughter radiantly in love with a daughter of her own.
Priya Zoe, swagatam.
The regular reader will know that I got greedy and had several Words of The Year and (here comes another one for those watching!) one of them is connection. This year I have been so aware of connection at many levels:
Connection with my place (like running in the Living Desert and doing lovely walks in Mutawintji NP); connection through my yoga and meditation; connection with friends and family; connection with people I meet who seem to often have just the thing I need to hear or learn….
There has also been connection in the form of teaching, buddying, mentoring and creating. At the moment, the work I am making is connecting ideas that seem quite disparate and I am absorbed with the link between seed pods and reliquaries. Steve Jobs said Creativity is just connecting things. And Maria Popova in brainpickings writes about the role of connection and creativity here. She quotes Paul Rand who says, The role of the imagination is to create new meanings and to discover connections that, even if obvious, seem to escape detection. Imagination begins with intuition, not intellect.
Some of the loveliest connections lately have come from students! Only this week two students sent me some real treasures. In response to a conversation about colour, Carol sent these fabulous photos of birds (she didn’t know the source. Ideas anyone?) and after we talked about the importance of creativity in life Clem sent this fabulous quote from Helena Bonham Carter which he displays in his workplace for all to reflect on:
I think everything in life is art. What you do. How you dress. The way you love someone, and how you talk. Your smile and your personality. What you believe in, and all your dreams. The way you drink your tea. How you decorate your home. Or party. Your grocery list. The food you make. How your writing looks. And the way you feel. Life is art.
I think the pod photo was taken by Cynthia Mooney of this site but I am checking! Soon I hope to connect properly with our new grand baby. Obviously I will need to wait until after the birth but I will be doing some preparatory connecting this week when I drive over to let it know that grandma is ready now! At least you are all used to sporadic, irregular blogging.
Here’s a sneak peek at my polymer ponderings on pods and gaus – the Tibetan Buddhist amulet containers: