I LOVE colour!
I was the kid who didn’t want to use her big new box of crayons because I didn’t want anything to happen to one of my precious colours.
I was equally protective of my coloured pencils.
I’ve always loved colour.
My favorite book when I was little was called “Oh Were They Ever Happy.” It’s a short little book of what the kids in a family helpfully try to do when their parents go out for a bit. Let’s just say they returned to a multi-coloured environment!
Despite my love of colour, and thus, most everything artistic, I always complained that I got ripped off in the creativity department.
In fact, my mom told me that I couldn’t be a teacher when I grew up because I wasn’t artistic. She said that if all my animals looked the same, the kids wouldn’t be pleased – that dogs shouldn’t be mistaken for horses or cows or anything else. I then went on to teach for nearly a decade, and my students were probably none the worse for their teacher’s lack of artistic ability.
It wasn’t until about ten years ago, when the allure of the spectrum of colours fabrics could come in drew me and I found that I had been wrong in my thinking. I wasn’t devoid of artistic ability, I just hadn’t found the right medium before that.
Once I started playing around with textiles, I saw that that love of colour God had engrained in me as a child came to life. And as I helped with decorating and other projects, to my surprise, I saw God had given me a unique eye for colour, which led to many trips to the LA Garment District helping with fabric purchases for different projects people were undertaking. Colour and textiles became my creative outlet and the very thing I began to chase down when overseas.
Colour came to life in traditional dress and shoes, as well.
Colours were also in abundance at the souq that would be set up each week near where I stayed with friends.
We took a horse cart through the neighborhood and countryside to get there, colours just as varied on each cart as the homes in the neighborhood would be. A ‘parking lot’ of horse carts would grow outside the souq, and young boys pulling handcarts would offer to help tote purchases in exchange for tips once in the souq.
The detailed tagine dishes were available in some places…
Chickens and sheep were available in another area. Take them live or take them home warm and clean them up yourself…
Fresh produce galore…in all the colours of the rainbow!
And candies, sweets, nuts, and other treats of every colour were available, as well.
Colour is therapy to me – mixing dyes, combining them in fabrics, or exploring God’s world. So on days like today, when it’s been a long or discouraging day, when I don’t feel well, and know I probably pushed it too much, I’ll find some fabric to create with, some crayons to colour a sketch of another idea with, or some beads to sort, and remember that although my creativity may be relegated to a less traditional realm, that doesn’t mean God’s not wired me with creativity at all.