When I was a child, I brought home every piece of art I made and presented it to my parents. My mom and dad would "ooh" and "aw" over my masterpiece and put it in a place of honor where it could be appreciated. This was enough to make my young artistic self vastly proud. Grown-up artists, I find, are not so lucky. Many singers, poets, painters and sculptors create wildly beautiful things, but Mom's dresser or Dad's desk just won't cut it anymore. Art shows, open mic nights, poetry readings, and blogs are proof that to simply create is not enough. We want to put our creations in the world. We crave the opportunity to move at least one person with the creative contents of our hearts. Recently, I made a piece of art for the sole purpose of putting it out into the world, a quilt which is currently looking for an owner.
Although I'd never in a million years want my doodles in an art show or think I could create a sculpture worthy of looking at, I consider myself an artist, merely because I need to create. I love to create. Music is my primary passion, but it is also the most personal and most difficult thing to do. And so my creativity finds other outlets, including writing, poetry, baking, and design. Quilts are a favorite medium of mine mainly because the idea of a piece of art that you can wrap around yourself while watching old movies excites me.
Various family members have been the happy recipients of quilts of mine, and until inspiration struck some years ago, I'd never thought of making a quilt to sell. It was at breakfast at a diner when a friend of mine told me of her plans to participate in the Susan B. Komen 3-day, 60-mile walk. I thought I had heard her wrong. Sixty miles??? I couldn't believe it. (Even now, I have to look up www.the3day.org just to make sure.) I've heard of plenty of walks for causes, but they are usually under 10 miles, most under 5. Sixty miles was outrageous! When I got home, I looked it up on the internet and was struck by the empowered women in the pictures taking on sixty miles in 3 days to prove their strength. I was awed by their determination and devotion, not to mention their overwhelming amounts of pink!
A few days later, an idea for a quilt came to me, and like any artist, I had to bring to life the idea that kept knocking around my mind. The design I came up with was a huge tree with pink leaves, symbolizing the strength and beauty of the female spirit, a spirit that no disease could ever truly conquer as made evident by the inspiring walkers of the Susan B. Komen 3-Day. I had never made a quilt before without knowing the recipient. And so, I took a chance, and every step along the way--designing the quilt on graph paper, collecting fabrics, cutting and piecing--I knew deep down that this quilt must have an owner. Somewhere, someone was meant to be the owner of the pink tree.
I can't possibly imagine what it must be like for a painter to have a room full of gorgeous paintings waiting desperately for an art show, but in a small way, I've made something and I'm sending it out into the universe. I'm hoping that it will be seen and appreciated, and maybe, just maybe, my quilt will find its owner. And so, here it is, I call it "Empowerment Tree:"