Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Amazing People.

People knitting, people hooking, people talking, people cooking.

People from near. People from far. Val from California was the person I met from farthest “away” (a term I heard a lot while there).

From the welcoming reception for the Fibre Arts Festival to the dinners, the exhibits, the hook in and the days at the symposium, everything was geared to meeting people.

People presenting. Although they all felt more like “sharers” than presenters. They made us laugh. They made us cry. They made us play. They challenged us to find the creativity in each and every one of us.

Ginny Stimmell - she is one of the most approachable publishers I have ever met (not that I know a lot of publishers) She left us knowing that it is up to each and every one of us to keep ensuring that Rug Hooking magazine is a format by hookers for hookers about hookers
Janet Crawford - her knowledge and advice as a small gallery owner about finding a gallery and exhibiting your work was invaluable, and gave us perspective from both sides - the artist and the gallery owner
Danielle Ouellet - her first homemade doll at 4 launched a lifelong journey into naïve art that is filled with beauty and emotion which sometimes makes you laugh and sometimes makes you cry.
Robert Lyon - his story was inspiring, having moved from Toronto seeking work-life balance and creating a wonderful life for his family with illustration, children’s’ book writing and self-publishing, t-shirt design and production - he was a wonderful reflection of how the art community there welcomes artists
Beth Powning - her success as a powerful writer and her dedication to journals impressed upon us the importance of a place to write to yourself about yourself. They have been her idea keepers to which she often returns in the writing of her novels
Valerie Hearder - her geographic and emotional journeys were shared in an inspirational slide presentation that showed us all that “Home is wherever you are.” Valerie also presented us with an opportunity to connect with fibre artists from South Africa by purchasing their needlework and donating part of the proceeds to support Aids survivors in her native land
Joy Laking - a lifelong, second generation artist whose sense of play inspired all of us to be open to trying something out of our comfort zone and seeing one another’s playfulness
Deanne - what is there to say - she embodies all things wonderful in our craft and the creativity in each and every one of us. She ended up being just the person I wanted her to be. Kind, caring, connected, and as emotional and excited as any of the flock in attendance.

Deanne’s special friends and relatives - our wonderful masseuse who roamed around for 2 days fixing tired hands and granite shoulders - our Sushi artist who came to share her delicious creativity - Deanne’s sisters and niece who are just as warm and welcoming as she is.

And the people to whom I personally owe a big thank you. Gwen who started our excursion on email and journeyed with me all the way from York Mills Station. Anne and Helen who picked us up in Moncton and shared their experiences at Heidi’s London Wool Farm and the Fog Forest Gallery display in Sackville. Jennifer and Mary who toted me along with them nearly everywhere they went.

Lynne who not only helped me find my way back to the Moncton Airport with Sharon, but who vowed to drive me there herself if necessary. Ruth who sat next to me during the symposium, and left me her phone number in Moncton in case anything went awry with my travel plans. She vowed to come and get me and take me home with her.

To a person, everyone we met made me feel welcome during my stay. I always knew that hookers are special people. Maritime hookers and their friends may have taken this to an entirely new level.

Food tomorrow.


Val said...

Many thanks for summing up a great event so eloquently. We made it safely back to San Diego this morning after an awesome weekend at Cheticamp and Cape Breton!

Wendie Scott Davis said...

Hey Val,

I envy you the extra time. Glad you're home safe and sound. I can't believe it's a week ago already that I got on the plane to start my journey. Work and life are back to abnormal again already....

Stella said...

Thanks for repeating the experience -- I'm having withdrawal and your notes help! The Maritimes is a favourite part of my world, so it's great being there for any reason, but that two days was pretty nourishing. The week has disappeared and I have not had ten minutes to tend to the new projects -- which are loudly yoo-hooing to me. It was lovely to meet in Amherst.

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