NEW NEW NEW! After last years residency in the Shetland islands I found myself with a collection of lovely images (paper cut, printings, and watercolors) as well as a sweet little wisp of a story. Not quite enough for a traditional book, I have collected them all here in a boxed set of card/pages. Each page has a little bit of the story and one of my related images from that time. The set of nine pages can be used as intriguing postcards, thumbtack-ready wall art, or a unique gift for anyone who loves art and story. They have been printed in a limited (numbered) edition of 100, and are available at my Twisp studio and through a select few retailers. If you have received a page as a postcard, see below for the whole story…..
Saltwater Lace- a little Shetland yarn.
1 Once upon a time there was a lighthouse keeper. She lived in a lighthouse on the tip top of a rocky headland on an island at the corner of the cold North Sea. Every day she walked along the shore path and took notice of the seasons and the flowers, rain or shine. It was a lonely life, and she had made friends of the rabbits and the seabirds and the whales. The whales were her favorite and their visits warmed her lonesome heart.
2 In September there was a string of lovely days and the whales had been away so long she worried they might not return. Now, lighthouse keepers keep a record of many things, like the weather, and ships, and animals. So, she flipped back through her logbooks til she found the last entry about whales.
“Stormy afternoon, wind NW 20-25 knots with the sea all frothed up and lacey white across the water. 3 Orca whales at play.”
3 She remembered that day. The sea foam was especially beautiful in the gale, and the whales had been frolicking about like dolphins. Sometimes when you are a bit lonesome and desperate, crazy ideas can sneak up on you unexpectedly, and that is just what happened.
“What if the whales like the lacey, foamy sea?” she wondered. “Perhaps I could make my own lace and it would bring the whales back…. Perhaps.”
4 Before the idea had been properly pondered, she was off, down the hill, skipping along the shore path to the CROFT. There she got all of the woolen fleece she could carry and toted it back to the lighthouse. She set in to work, carding and spinning, and preparing the wool. It would have to be of the finest kind in order to float upon the sea as she had hoped.
5 All day and all night the lighthouse keeper worked, stopping only for a scone and tea, or to polish the light, record the weather. She even pulled a chair up close when the fog rolled in, to continue knitting between soundings of the fog horn.
6 When all of the wool had been used up she carried her treasure down to the little hideaway cove where the YOWL was kept and rowed her way out past the rocks. Each piece of lace was gently laid on the water like a patchwork quilt of waves, and it was perfect. The fleece so white, and the lace so fine it floated like a feather atop the sea.
7 Just as the last piece was being laid out, a cold wind rustled the hair around her cap and she turned to see a dark cloud fast approaching. Soon enough large raindrops came down, pelting the lace and plunging it under the water into a twisted, soggy mess.
Waves started to threaten her small boat and she pulled hard for shore. But where was the sheltered cove in all this rain and wind? Finally, she spied the WARD that marked her entrance and hurried in.
8 Dripping with rain and sea and tears she hauled the boat onto the beach and ran up and up and up the hill and round the spiraling steps of the lighthouse. She burst out onto the balcony only to see the last bits of lace tossed and tangled in the waves. All of her hard work and hopes were sinking.
But what she also saw…….were the whales.
S is for Salmon
My first book, “S is for Salmon- a pacific northwest alphabet” is published by Sasquatch press here in Seattle. The book is the offspring of a grant project funded by the Seattle office of Arts and Cultural Affairs. For that project I made a set of 26 papercut images depicting Northwest flora,fauna, and elements and used hand silkscreening to make large format display cards sets. These sets were then donated to childrens programs around the city such as libraries, schools, and community centers. I also had the pleasure of joining a few of these groups to do in-class presentations that mixed natural history, art, and active storytelling.
Now those images (with some revisions and the addition of wonderful colors) have been made into a lovely little hardbound book that everyone old and young can have and hold.
Arrow to Alaska
Arrow to Alaska- a pacific northwest adventure is the tale of a small boy who goes on a very Northwest adventure north to Alaska to visit his Grampy.
Needless to say there are fishing boats, sea planes, breaching whales, and boats,boats, boats! It is also published by Sasquatch and their new “little bigfoot” imprint.
B is for Bear
Third in line! In mid October 2015, B is for Bear -a natural alphabet came out. Made with the same format as S is for Salmon, but featuring all new flora,fauna, and elements, it is an outdoors alphabet for those of you that are not as Northwesty.
Weathering- an illustrated journal
Not exactly a picture book, this illustrated journal is for young and old. It’s called Weathering and is full of clouds and stormy seas in papercut and pen and ink subtly colored. Use it for your lists and love note drafts, your dreams and schemes and the delights of the day to day. To get your hands on one, see the notes above, or stop on by my studio in lovely Twisp, WA.
So check them out at your local independent book stores and libraries. If you are a store interested in carrying any of my books, contact Random House distribution at (800) 733-3000 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are looking for one or two copies, I suggest www.powells.com for an indie online option.