Friday, May 20, 2011

Little lost frog...

Completing projects is good, and I was able to finish another commission piece this week. It will be my last for a while because my summer shows are coming up and I need to turn my attention to making some fresh pieces for art fairs. I was commissioned to create a new version of one of my earliest popular pieces called ‘A Walk in the Woods’. I pulled out my big box of green chenille thrums, most of which my husband had tied together and rolled into balls. I think the greens look very crunchy and leafy, like you’re looking into a bowl of fresh lettuce for a salad. I pulled out the combinations that worked well together, blended them in different combinations, and worked to create more depth than I had in the original piece. More recent pieces have taught me that by crocheting some of the green leaf clumps I can bring forward the canopy and move the tree trunks deeper into the background. On the forest floor I added some flowers because, well, the person who commissioned the piece wanted some! I was channeling a pleasant dog walk I had with my friend Dawn Adams last month. The dog enjoyed the freedom while we took in the emerging green and delicate spring ephemerals.

Delighted by my success with my ‘Walk in the Woods’ piece I turned my creative momentum to completing my Red Gum piece. Unfortunately, my frog seems to have been awakened by the recent monsoon-like rains and hopped away. I made him a couple of months ago, and I know exactly where I left him. When I reached down to quickly capture him (he’s a good jumper even without his skin) he wasn’t there! I did have a flood in the art studio and everything got moved around. Maybe he’s still hiding down there somewhere, pining for fresh water. I should probably look around the sunken window where the waters flooded in. If he doesn’t turn up shortly I’ll have to make a new frog and find him another home when he does get hungry and turn up. Thinking about all the water has me remembering my sketches of a cool lake in northern Ontario. My next piece might just need some deep, glistening blue yarns to capture northern waters.

I couldn’t write about the week with out mentioning Jacob, aka the Dodo bird from Alice in Wonderland. The performance was Thursday and Jacob was the star of the show. For me, anyway! The school sent home an ugly looking costume that was a cross between a gigantic, overweight chicken (think Foghorn Leghorn) and a University Professor (complete with a pipe for contemplation). Jacob rejected the image and came up with his own. Our journey started out at Once Upon a Child, where we bought a gray long-sleeved t-shirt for $2.50. We pulled out a bumpy feather pillow from Grandma and repurposed the feathers. Jacob used about ten hot glue sticks to lay down rows of feathers from his hands to his elbows. The outcome was very realistic. He made a big yellow beak and a tricorn hat (they were in the original instructions) to go with his feathery wings. I convinced him that wearing a long-sleeved yellow t-shirt upside down would give him the needed yellow legs (Dodos have yellow legs he noted—thanks Google!). He pulled a pair of shorts over the shirt to cover the unused neck hole and he was ready to lead the Caucus race! He acted and sang like a champion, as did all his friends in Mrs. Bland’s class. It’s enough to warm a Mom’s heart.

Until next week...

Martina Celerin

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