Thursday, April 7, 2011

Day 26: Create something portable

The prompt for today was to make something portable that normally isn't, and that's a tricky idea that I struggled with up through this morning. I had an appointment today that got me up earlier than usual, and in my groggy pre-coffee state I had this weird idea of a forest in a cart. What this concept had to do with anything I wasn't really sure, but once the image was in my brain it wouldn't let go.
Later when I suggested the thought to my girlfriend, she pointed out that it's a very fairytale idea, which made everything slip into place. I've read at least half a dozen fairy tales where some heroine or hero is given an item that, when opened or thrown causes a forest to spring up and bar the way of whoever is chasing them. Sometimes it's a comb, or sometimes a nut or acorn, both of which make some kind of sense.
The book behind the forest here is a copy of Grimm's fairy tales from 1925, which I have no real idea how I came into possession of but which has some nice little odd stories or strange versions of stories that are a little more obscure. There's 'The Man Who Learned to Shiver' which was retold in the Jim Henson Storyteller series as 'Fearnot', some weird stuff such as one titled simply 'The Nose', along with more familiar stories like 'Snow White'. Even when I was younger I preferred the more obscure stories, and the idea of opening an acorn to produce an entire forest is just an enchanting idea.
It kind of reminds me of the puppet show I'm helping design shadow puppets for right now, which is a more realistic telling that includes the idea of planting an acorn to sow the future of a forest.
Peter Pan approves!
I guess my brain was still on materials from the back yard. The wagon is one of several kits my girlfriend bought to make up and put with dolls. It went together fast, but I was in a hurry to paint it with some very watered-down acrylics to get a kind of stained look, and the wood warped some because it was so saturated. I should have given the glue more time to set, at least, I think. It's not very sturdy.
There's real dirt packed in, and some moss from the back yard over that. The pond is a blue flat marble I found on my walk earlier today, and the horse (just pretend it's a deer?) is a little plastic thing I for some reason remembered I had in my old childhood jewelry box. The trees themselves are the very tips of branches, where the leaves come out in bunches. I cleared out our tiny garden in the process of looking for these. I still had more of the moss I used for Peter Pan yesterday, for the treetops. I noticed as I was taking photos that he's just the right height to stand next to the forest and be camouflaged, so I just had to include him in the photo session.
If anyone has a magic acorn that will instantly create a full-size forest, let me know, but in the meantime this one on wheels will do.

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