Sometimes it takes a look back to see where you are going… Some recent events had me thinking; how did I get here? And why? Let’s have a chat, see how I became a ‘Maker’ and get to know each other.
The Wonderful Outdoors!
From a young age on, even before I was completely in charge of myself I was always out in nature; maybe not the wild but some form of it local or not so local. I credit that to my father who took us for a hike every sunday, perfect for some heartfelt chats along the way. It then seemed became my ‘norm’, for the rest of my life and perfect to share with my beloved lil’ Pup.
It’s comical how we realize things about ourselves when we are explaining it to someone else! That’s how I came to this post, as a very dear family member came to visit and I recounted the history of it all, much to my surprise.
As a child (over 4 decades ago) I used to get such pleasure from packing (actually mom packing) a lunch and heading off into the local forest for the day. I loved the solitude, the natural beauty and the possibility of discovering something interesting in the wild. It wasn’t even so wild, just a section of an escarpment a couple blocks from my home at the time!
I chuckle now when I remember how I would play in the creek, rearranging the rocks and making a ‘better’ waterfall, moving plants around to create a perfect natural picture. I was maybe 10 years old! Such would not happen nowadays sadly. I’d collect chestnuts and any other treasures that looked like they could become something special.
Where It all started:
Backtrack to my early first few years, when I lived on the other side of the big ocean! I had not returned for 50 years to my birth place and was shocked when I finally did! I now understood some of my compulsion for the perfect landscapes and gardens! Now I know why I have a bit of an old-fashioned historic flair to my design; how could I not when I was born here!? I was almost too young to consciously remember but it definitely had an impact on my taste.
Mom, Sewing & suitcases:
Haha, I admit I have a few obsessions (more divulging soon too) and many can be ‘blamed’ on my mother! Bless her for sewing all my clothes and letting me see how a stay-at-home-mom can actually be worth more than a paycheque. She saved, reused and up-cycled before it was fashionable, and needed somewhere to store it – Suitcases! Why not, as they are so beautiful as well. I was not forced to sew, but just picked it up by osmosis it seemed.
One does not sew just for saving money, but I love how it lets me be completely unique, fit to me and gives that great feeling of accomplishment! My own first machine at age 12 is still going strong… I wish more had interest in sewing in this day, so much can be saved from the landfills.
Choosing a profession:
‘Choose something that you love to do and it will never feel like work!’ is what my wise mother told me. I chose a career in commercial art as I didn’t want to be a starving artist. Thankfully my parents did not discourage me from such a career as so many do. Becoming a Technical Illustrator had it’s bonuses of learning many other aspects of art such as Model making etc.
Being an ‘artist’ is a life long rewarding process if you keep striving and learning. ‘We all need to start somewhere’ is something I remind my students as I also still teach in an art college. Being super busy does keep you out of trouble…
My Subject Matter:
When not working on commissioned pieces for my own business I love to paint what I love to see; colour, reflection, and natural landscape. I attempt to permanently capture that feeling I had when I would glide along the peaceful shore in my canoe! everyone has a favourite thing that they identify with. When I started my site I didn’t really have a distinct direction; it just developed innately on it’s own.
Well, sometimes the subject is donuts; it’s not only for me… but for those I love. That’s another big bonus of being a ‘maker’, you can make people happy with personalized gifts, even though they may cry with emotion.
Even before I discovered Eco Printing I would feel comfortable near water and trees. Rocks and stones always interested me, even without really knowing why. How mother nature creates such beauty with basic elements.
From Rocks to Concrete:
My combination of art forms is somewhat odd when I think about it, but it did all start with casting stepping stones from leaves! How marvelous to be able to make things that last so long and are perfect for the garden! Again there is that natural element. ‘No need to buy stuff like commercial molds when nature can supply.
When you open your mind to any possibilities new ideas hatch quite easily and there is no shortage, only time! Crossing the boundaries of media and art bring so many new refreshing ideas. Don’t discount any crazy ideas before you give them a chance.
My garden is my oasis, so ‘making’ for it is perfect. Inexpensive and long-lasting concrete creations, not to mention how it adds design to garden.
I teach how to draw spheres and other perspective drawing exercises so these just coincidently came to be. Simple shapes like the orbs compliment plants and foliage without over-powering. Design and knowing what you like is very similar to picking your outfit; go with your ‘gut’ feeling…
Get out there!
As I write this I am thinking I need to get out there; only a few warm days left for making some ‘concrete’ Maybe even have some local wildlife will come for a look-see. You just never know; the stories I could tell!
Speaking of ‘friends’:
I have a pet turtle; a Red-eared Slider that shares my garden space during the summer in the pond. He (I think it’s actually a ‘she’) has been in the family for 28 years now! Every time I pick him up I marvel at all the markings and details. It just gives me a bit more of that feeling of being out in the wild again…
One of the best things I’ve ever made is my children! Yes, not just because they are amazing but because they can make grandbabies! Children give you a chance to pass on so much, and they also are a reflection of yourself. This darling little fellow will hopefully learn so much from Grandma; I can’t hardly wait.
Yup, that’s me!
I’m old fashioned and still cautious about putting my face all over the internet, it’s hard to change that. I’ve learnt so much about this virtual world already and some things that not are so desirable! Content gets taken, pictures stolen and copied, but so much good also comes from you my readers! I am constantly grateful for the kind words that I get by email! In today’s world it is so amazingly easy to connect! I get such generous offers to ship leaves and even other goodies, thanks so much to all of you!
I hope this has let you see a bit more of my world through the screen and how I became a ‘maker’! I look forward to hearing from you and sharing more projects. Happy Making!