4 days with Sammy

February 4, 2014

Having a small boy around for 4 days over New Year I learnt many things.

How to excavate a pile of dirt to find fossils.

How to build a cardboard sky-scraper with a draw-bridge and round windows and flying creatures that park in those windows.

The importance of ducking when chasing said boy around kid-sized play equipment.

How to persuade a person to eat French toast by sprinkling it with cinnamon sugar, and eat vegetables by adding a cheesy white sauce.

How to take photographs of interesting things at knee level.

Squids are jet-propelled.

According to his grandfather, Sam said his visit here was better than he thought it would be.

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And now for your viewing pleasure here are a couple of images by Sam. So good.

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Babies versus the art life

February 8, 2012

There is the pull towards the making, drawing, creating something out of the stuff that gets absorbed via curiosity and by just being open. The need to process and give it out again.

And then there’s the wanting children. Fortunately for me, I have three.

Wanting the two things – to make a great family and to make great art – sets up a pull between them. They each want full attention. It seems almost impossible to do both things well, at once.

Recently I found a stack of drawings that I made in the early days of raising a family. Modest drawings made in small moments. (Lots of sleeping babies.) And it looks to me now that, although I spent less time on the art side of things, in those moments I was so alive, and so glad to keep hold of that thread.

Making these drawings I was remembering who I am, in amongst the crowded days that belonged to my family. And now they are such a delight – a record of my children being who they are, apart from me, way back then. I felt it was imperative to make those moments, not only for myself.

Violence

May 3, 2011

A few days ago we heard on the news that a young man and his three children were killed in an air raid. His father, a megalomaniac, was the intended target.

Last night we heard that a man who is responsible for many acts of violence around the world was killed in a surprise attack. ‘He used his wife as a human shield’ they said.

Both reports made me feel sick. It was the smiles on people’s faces that did it. Of course the world can do without such men. And I reckon I would feel like avenging a murdered loved one, and it all makes me feel sick.

I feel compelled to post a quote I saw in my friend’s studio recently.

“I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.” Mahatma Gandhi.

Copy of Tom babe