Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A Parable

I am a storyteller. Instead of posting about my adventures in faux jade today, I am going to tell a story about myself. In other times, in other places, this would be called a parable.

There was a young woman who loved color. She would hold colored yarns in her hands as if she held the jewels of an empire-- ochres, rust, burgundy, jade, crimson, lapis, azure, bark and verdigris. She loved to fashion those fibers into beautiful textiles-- sweaters, shawls, scarves. Her patterns looked liked the skins of exotic animals. She cared not if she received money for her labors, for they were labors of love-- love for the excitement of pure creation and the feel of working the bright wools and mohair. She felt as if she touched The Divine when she was at her craft.

Her work was new and different. People began to notice her pieces and urge her to sell her creations and she decided that, if selling her work would allow her to spend all her time at what she loved to do, she would do it, although she had no talent for the marketplace. But she couldn't think of anything she would be happier doing than spending all her time creating beautiful things that would become precious to others, and to be able to share her love of making in this way.

At first, she was successful in a small way but soon her reputation spread and she was urged to take her products to the wider world, to the City. She sought advice about this and was warned that, once out in the world, there were those who would steal her designs and copy them and undersell her prices. She was told that nothing could prevent that, it was just the way things were. The only way for her work to continue was to keep innovating, keep changing, keep being different.

How could she do that? Was there that much creativity in one person? What if she ran dry of ideas? What if she failed? So she gave up. She returned to her small town and pulled back from her dream of taking her love of colors to everyone. She let fear stop her. She let fear overwhelm her creativity. She let fear win.

This was a true story. Where do I get my ideas from? I read a lot, I think a lot, I listen to music, I go for walks in the woods-- it all feeds into my creativity, there's a synergy going on that takes all the things I see and read and hear and think and funnels that into what I make. When I'm done with it, you can have it. I don't want it anymore. I want you to enjoy it-- I just enjoyed making it, I have my reward. I only sell stuff because I have to buy supplies, eat, keep the lights on, etc. You know what my real wish is, in my heart of hearts? To be able to give you what I make, for free, just to see you love it. The Divine-- whatever you call this entity for yourself-- gave it to me and now it's yours. I'm grateful that I got to create it.


  1. You know we are willing to pay!

  2. Couldn't have said it better! Thank you!

  3. Christine-
    That is a brilliant post! Your parable says so much with so little and really strikes a cord deep in me. I believe like you do that I would do what I do even if no one wanted to pay me for it. I love that you would want to make something just to share that love and to see the way someone reacts when they wear it. That is true creativity and inspiration. Your work is so lovely. I love it. And I look forward to reading more about your journey and to participate with you in the exchange! Enjoy the day! Erin

  4. What a kind and generous spirit you are, to share your creativity without expectations or competitivenes. That is truly a gift in itself.