January 8, 2011

"Use Paste..."

The creative process is an exhilarating, sometimes frustrating and mysterious experience. Where do these ideas come from? Children often make things, we have the idea, and somehow try to figure out how to bring it into physical reality even though we rarely have the correct tools, or ability. Yet, we endeavour. Where does this, need come from? Sometimes it seems as though our imagination comes from outside ourselves.

As I was reading through the book The Doll by Carl Fox, I was struck by many interesting things. In this volume of images of dolls from around the world, the text comprises of Mr. Fox expounding his thoughts about the allure of dolls, how dolls developed, and his personal experience playing with them.

He tells the story of Miss Izannah Walker who lived in Rhode Island and made rag dolls with fabric faces. Apparently, when caught in the quest to perfect her creation she too found the answer from the great mystery, "In a letter to the Providence Bulletin, a niece of Miss Walker wrote: "Family tradition tells of her struggle to perfect her work and the long wrestling with one problem, how to obtain a resistant surface to the stockinette heads, arms, and legs, without cracking or peeling. With this problem on her mind, Aunt Izannah suddenly sat up in bed one night to hear a voice say 'use paste". It worked...""

Ah, that great voice... it so very often provides practical information, often when you least expect it, and rarely when you feel that you most need it. Who is that? Where does that voice come from? Hmmm....

Fox, Carl. The Doll the New Shorter Edition. New York, NY: Harry N. Abrams, Inc. , 1973. 23. Print.

The Doll - Here is a link to Amazon.com for a peek.

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