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Gnomemaking: For Better or Worth

Updated: Mar 18, 2021

Gnomes and fairies are diminutive beings, and I recently found that their small size lent itself perfectly to some big feelings around worthiness and creating…

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine asked me if I thought her brother—an extraordinarily talented and productive artist—was THE artist of her family. Although she was also a talented artist, she felt her accomplishments paled in comparison. On that particular day, she was feeling particularly gnome-sized.

It was a Thursday evening, and I tuned in to Oregon Art Beat with my friend’s question fresh on my mind. That night, the two featured artists created big, meaningful pieces; works that were collected, galleried, largely recognized, and made a large impression on me. I felt myself shrinking almost immediately, falling in line next to my friend.

For the past week, I’d been working on paper doll Gnomes, and suddenly, they felt really small. Simplistic. Flat. I tried to console myself—it was harder than it looked to get that basic doll face. Six other faces had come before it! And every time I inked-in the delicate pencilled features, my pen had a mind of its own! It strayed just enough to ruin smiles and make eyes cockeyed—but I couldn’t be consoled. Those works of art on Art Beat were monumental, and I was feeling elemental!

So, I took a melatonin, a few deep breaths, and went to bed. The next morning when I woke up, I remembered...

All the peanut-sized places inside of me had super powers! I didn’t have to stay small. My peanuts were made of protein! They nourished me. I remembered the moment the paper doll idea popped into my head out of the blue. I remembered I wasn’t sure I’d be able to make it work. And how, as I worked on them, they worked on me, generating that generous effervescence that comes from creating (and can make me a little hyper and hard to be around)! I am here to tell you that small ideas can make big foam!

Whether your acts of creativity make it on Art Beat or a gallery wall, or they only see the light of your day, crack your shells! Eat your peanuts! Make foam!!!

You may purchase a Gnomebuddy Cut & Color Kit in our Treasure Chest Gift Shop

Kit includes: one Gnome, a clothing and accessory page, a Fairy friend coloring page, and room for your creativity!

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