‘Walking on a tightrope’ {making} 

This is about the metaphorical teetering that goes on in life. Treading on eggshells, delicately inching forward, in a vulnerable and exposed stance, maybe there are strange feelings and butterflies taking over your insides.


The practice of meditative behaviour. The tightrope walker must pay close attention to both their physical and emotional state, as both situations are precarious and dangerous.

Advertisements

This happened {making}

Easter time. This happened.

We decided to stay home for the weekend, instead of our usual stint visiting the coast.

4 whole days. Bliss.

What is a girl to do with 4 whole days?

I was hanging out some washing, always a good start to feeling organised and on top of things. I had hung the clothes out, the sun was warm, and for the first time this year all 3 children were in the sandpit. The dog too. Digging for treasure they buried for her. There were an assortment of exploding volcanoes, sand pies, and then things took a turn for the worse. T-shirts were stuffed with wet sand, laughter erupting around me. Then came the hose, spraying walls, dogs, kids. Then the sand throwing. Everywhere.

I was aware all of this was happening around me, and was happy in my bubble of bliss while the blood curdling shrieks of three small people were spirited and happy – and the sand wasn’t landing in my mouth, the world was fine. Bleeding eyeballs and tears were the only thing that could bring me out of my trance.

While all this was happening around me. I had found a stumpy purple pencil at my feet (I cannot stand purple, I adore violets – but the colour is always the last I would choose in a line-up of the rainbow.) I had picked up this pencil and started drawing on the wall of the house. Swirly lines, flowers, a vine of sorts in a deco style. I love my deco.

The noise around me still loud with laughter. A good sign. I grabbed my nippers. I started cutting little green pieces of glass for the stem. Bits of mirror too – because we all know I love sparkle. I glued over the purple line. Two hours had passed with no child related incident. In fact the smallest one had joined me and asked if he could stick the green bits, green is his very favourite colour.

Terrific, I had a personal assistant for my project!

photowallone

He stuck around for at least two hours. The vine was nearly done. Then we started on the flowers. He stuck on all of the flower stamen within reach. One. Two. Three.

Then the inner petals. Then he cut and run, he went for a bath.

walltwo

I carried on over the next few days with eager assistants, until the sun went down.

This didn’t feel arduous.

This was as relaxing as a bath, as relaxing as a weeding funk,

as relaxing as floating on my back down the river.

All in all this was a very organic process,

my planning skills are severely lacking as any friend will tell you.

Picking glue off my fingers has always a moment of pure zen for me.

Flying by the seat of my pants has always been my mode of transport.

I had sand, I had water, I had squealing around me – and look what happened.

wallthree

 {work in progress}

5 things to know before you let mosaic into your life {collecting, making, treasure}

There are pros and cons that you can apply to most things in life.

Its the second week of Spring school holidays here (pro). Surrounded by children (pro… yep. pro), leaves bursting into view (pro), and wicked puppies by my feet (pro),  I grout a birdbath (con-ish), with black grout up to my wrists (damn it! con!). I think to myself… I wonder if there are any other mosaic artist/fiends out there who wondered why they could not have managed to obsess over a more polite art. Like building model planes, or pastel drawing, or knitting socks. Why on earth did I pick mosaics??

I appear at grouting time with a line-up of essentials, like a dentist’s tray. Gloves, sponges, tools, water and wine. I am VERY prepared. I still manage to absolutely balls up the process of grouting, whip off my gloves, get my ‘real’ fingers in there to do the job  – removing any fingerprints I may have had on my pink stumps that were once lovely, long piano-playing digits. This in turn begins a chain reaction of grout in hair, grout on new t-shirt, grout on lady-like leather boots, grout on deck, grout on puppies. This is usually the order of things, for me. I was prepared! What happened?? This is in no way the ONLY hazard of this art.

Think carefully. Mull it over. Is mosaic really for you?

Here is a list. 5 things you should know before picking up those damned nippers:

1. You will never have pretty hands. You will have hands like an elephants bum. If you are very lucky all 10 fingernails will be still be partially attached. You will have grout staining your skin and fingernails for days, should you really be making meatballs tonight?  Now, before any of you ask, ‘Why aren’t you wearing gloves?’ I do. Kind of. At first. I find gloves get in the way. I consider my options. I literally stop dead in my tracks, and have a little talk to my inner-Emily about the fact I am 2 nano-seconds away from whipping those gloves off. The decision has been made. Poor hands. Oh, I’m suffering for my art.

2. You will stop listening to people. Because you are looking over their shoulder the whole time wondering if you could mosaic the slow moving child behind them. For you it might be a car body, a step, a tree stump, a swing set – not necessarily a human. ‘Look at my eyes when you are talking to me!’ I say this to my kids all the time – this applies to me too! So, remember to listen. Try very hard. Ears AND eyes. We call this ‘whole body listening.’ This is very important if you intend to keep your friends/children/partner. You may need to consider mentally dividing your life into two. Real life vs Mosaic time, otherwise the lines become blurred and you can’t stay on track with reality and be even 42% ‘present’ while listening to your friend/children/partner/dog and simultaneously dreaming of rainbow glass. I know this because of number 5. See below.

3. You will need to get some tweezers. For you, not your mosaic. I once pulled a piece of glass, horror-movie style from my knee. I had knelt down on it 7 months earlier when glueing glass to mesh for a mural installation. I could feel something was ‘different’ and started ripping at my kneecap. It became like a little doorway flap, that a mouse might use if it lived in my knee. Out came a lovely piece of purple glass. Bandaids should be kept under your bra-strap if you are a bleeder. You will constantly be slicing yourself open. Oh! And its such a pretty red! Make firm friends with any First Aid Officers you meet. On the upside, you may want to consider your options of ‘murderer’ as a lifestyle choice right about now. Dexter-style. I’m not saying, ‘Go ahead. Do it!’ I’m just saying you’d probably get away with it. Has anyone been really pissing you off lately? Like I said above, you won’t have any finger prints left. So go for it! Its your time.

4. You will be the only person you know rockin’ an almighty Dowagers hump. Congratulations!! There is a remedy for this. Apparently. Go to your local Two Dollar shop and purchase a new Pool Noodle. (That’s what we call them in Australia, the kids play with/on them pony style or placed under the arm pits as a floatation device in the pool.) Anyhoo, get a new one that hasn’t been bent for a pony ride. Place noodle on the floor. Now place yourself on the floor, lie down flat on your back with your hands by your side. Wiggle onto the pool noodle until your spine is aligned with the noodle. Now drop your shoulders to the ground. AAHHH! That’s nice. Its a good boob stretch too. Remember, a stretch a day keeps the hump away. (Not kidding, my chiropractor recommended this).

5. You will forget important things. Like dinner. And your children’s names. You need to find a very understanding partner. Who will cook dinner because you have ‘gone crazy’, ‘need just 5 more minutes’, or ‘are in no way stopping what you are doing right now!’ And breakfast. Lunch too. And they need to do the washing. And walk the dogs. So, if there is no milk in the fridge, and the kid’s ribs are showing through their clothing, and that ‘understanding partner’ is say, at work – it might be time to take a break. Or your children might be taken away from you, by the government. Snap out of it! Down-tools time. Go grocery shopping.

So that’s it! 5 hazards of becoming a Crazy Mosaic Lady. Or Chap.

 Another one for the list! You’ll need a bigger house too. For all of your ‘stuff’.

Is it too late for you?