My dear, sweet Friends,
I did promise you all a surprise in the last blog post.
I want to introduce you to the people of my country...by letting them speak for theyself.
So, without further blah-blah from me, here is Lisana. She is artist, living in Merica, but she is 100% Guyanese-born 'n' bred.
I hope you enjoy. xx neena.
the postcard project
Personal challenges rank high on my list of favourite things. I don’t like when people challenge me to do things because invariably, I get nervous, then overthink it and end up messing up. But challenging myself? Yes, please! Yoga everyday challenge. Setting a timer for seven minutes then seeing how fast I can unpack the dishwasher! Timing myself to see how fast I can clean my kitchen. Each year, for the past three years, I’ve challenged myself to read thirty books. I can’t increase the number until I’ve met the goal. Suffice it to say, next year the number will still be thirty.
My movie challenge is my favourite. I set the movie challenge for myself three years ago. I started with seventy. I met it. I increased it to seventy-five. This year, I need to watch eighty movies. And it’s not just any kind of movie. It’s artsy movies that make you go “hmm” and ponder it for a few days. Every now and then, a silly movie sneaks in. At first, I didn’t include them on the “Movie List” but now I let it go and do. I’ve got nine weeks left this year and twenty-three movies to go.
It was to my eternal delight when a few months ago, my sister sent our family a message. Let’s start a Postcard Challenge. We have to make postcards by hand and send them to each other and to other people we know. We can make them anyway we like – collage, painted, drawn. The only caveat is that we make each postcard ourselves.
Well! If ever there was a challenge for me, this was it! Not only was this an endeavor to help the USPS but it was going to be fun too. I told myself that I’d make postcards for all the people I communicate with regularly – family and friends.
The real challenge for me though is two-fold. First, I’m an artist and typically use larger canvases but these postcards are about the size of fourteen postage stamps. Secondly, I am not an abstract-expressionist so the challenge has been to be more spontaneous and in the moment. These postcards are so low-risk that it’s been fun pretending I am an abstract-expressionist.
The whole process has been a pleasure. Finding out the standard postcard sizes online was easy. I then measured acrylic paper to size and cut a stack. Finally, I put on some music and get started. No plan. No prior ideas of what I want to do. No postcard takes more than 20 minutes to make. Some cards are painted, while some are mixed-media. Every weekend, I make three or four postcards. Then, I lay out the finished ones and imagine who might enjoy receiving that particular card. After choosing a coloured pen (Steadler, Hi-Tec-C or Muji - my favourites), I spend a happy hour writing the postcards to those people.
While the whole project has been nothing but lovely, it didn’t compare to the pleasure of receiving handmade postcards from my mom, sissy and friends who all joined the Postcard Project as well.