I have heard of artists who ‘are given’ art works, supposedly from a muse, or somewhere beyond themselves. Generally speaking, I am not one of those lucky artists. I usually start with a tiny germ of an idea, then work it out with much effort, and sometimes even blood, sweat, and tears. However, early in my weaving life, I did once dream a totally complete tapestry, that I knew to have been created by me, but that I’d not yet created. Back then, my design skills and materials were very simple, so it took me a great deal of time (over a year) to finally get that dream tapestry out of my brain, onto paper, and then onto the loom. But when it was woven, I recognized it as the tapestry I had dreamed.
Sadly, that was a one time thing.... until yesterday morning. When I woke up yesterday, while still groggy and without even putting my glasses on, I saw a tapestry on the wall that I haven’t yet woven. There actually is one of my tapestries on the wall in the space I was looking, but I saw it as a completely new and different image, not anything like the tapestry that was there. As I now have more sophisticated design tools, and more advanced skills, I worked to create the design I’d seen throughout the day. I sketched it in Procreate on my iPad, and worked to make it fit the image I had ‘seen.’
This is what I started with. I had also started with a working title; ‘Prayer of Despair.’ It’s not a bright cheery image, or idea, but I think it reflects the times we are in with women losing loved ones to violence and disease, and women’s rights being threatened yet again. And I have things in my own life that often make me despair right now, as well. My original vision was that both hands were fists, but I decided to make one a fist, in anger and despair, and the other one open, in supplication.
At the end of the day, this is the image I had created, and it is very close to what I had imagined. At this time, I am not sure that I will weave this tapestry. Perhaps our lives will get brighter by the time my current tapestry is off the loom, and this design will no longer be relevant. And the design may evolve more over time, as well. But for now, it is at least out of my mind; a rare ‘gifted’ tapestry in the making.