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Explore the Artists' Journey...
Bobo was born in 2012. My Godson Mekhi named the first Sock Monkey I ever made Bobo. Bobo was the superhero or villian of every story Mekhi told for so long that Bobo needed a friend to absorb some of the trauma. Making Sock Monkeys for Mekhi allowed me to share a connection with him that taught me a valuable lesson about handmade gifts for children, how it stimulates their imagination and so much more. I am forever grateful for these memories.
After getting settled into a beautiful space in Dunedin, I felt a strong calling to make sock monkeys again. It was in Florida I struggled heavily with the grey area of creating for fun and creating for profit. I remember specifically talking with an old high school friend, she said to me as I stitched this orange monkey I loved so much,
"I'm glad you are doing something you enjoy."
My good friend, years earlier, encouraged me to draw WHATEVER I wanted, not what I thought people wanted to see. I'm so glad to have such an encouraging friend in my corner. As I look back, I had not the slightest clue I would be making sock monkeys with so much enthusiasm in 2020.
With this particular group of Monkeys, I experimented with how much love I could load into their fiber filled brains. The orange monkey, for some strange reason, I photograph more intentionally. I made a playlist for the orange monkey, and before he grew eyes and a heart, I tied him into a knot and played a video of him in the womb allowing him to witness his own incubation. I played Mac Miller from his playlist, cuz I loved this monkey that much. I really wanted my peers to connect with this monkey as well, so I gave my friends on instagram an opportunity to name him. A high school friend of mine gave him the name Yunkey, "because he is a Young Monkey", She said. I fell in love with Yunkey so deeply I didn't know if I would be able to sell him. Yunkey went with me to work and sat at my desk. I made sure to take Yunkey to the beach for a proper photo shoot. I got so comfortable with my new friend that I decided to take Yunkey to a Florida in Art showcase where Yunkey and I accepted the Fulfill Your Destiny Grant. I didn't think my day could get any better until a young boy running around the event showed interest in Yunkey. I let him play with the monkey and quickly realized, Yunkey was not my Monkey anymore. I knew to give the monkey to the kid. He really enjoyed it, but I didn't understand the exchange until now. I am grateful : .
While planning the ultimate year of success and happiness, like the rest of the world, a global pandemic was quickly approaching. My personal life seemed to deteriorate at the same pace of the Virus blanketing over the world. It was a very odd time. I've seemed to always live on the edge of not caring much for self preservation and it showed. People were stocking up on home supplies like they had underground bunkers. It was like supermarket sweep and my cart was filled with art supplies. What really got me, was how all the thread was missing off the shelves with the exception of copper thread! A Pisces healer taking great care of my spirit crafted with copper. I was promoting her work, I felt a deep connection to it. To find copper thread at a time like this was confirmation to proceed on this path less traveled.
I traveled back to Florida to paint a mural and tame personal affairs before returning to my final destination in Clarksville, Indiana. In between moves I stayed with my sister for a couple of months in Decatur, Georgia. My lessons on humility compounded. My lessons on inner peace expanded. My lessons on the importance of family became crystal clear.
I did a lot of growing up in the safety of my Big Sister's home.
I made a lot of sock monkeys while being still and practicing social distancing. I feel like it was here in Georgia that I confirmed these monkeys were healthy for me to make and a great gift for people to receive. Money was running low in Georgia as were my Sock Monkey supplies. Instead of giving up, I decided to try an embroidered heart to save a little cash. I am so happy with the results, from now on I will be embroidering Sock Monkey hearts. While living in Radcliff, I pirated one of my Daddy's Sleep Shirts. I used his sleep shirt in a couple of different ways but my favorite way to use the sleep shirt is to patch up accidents on the Monkeys. Daddy's sleep shirt makes everything better : .
My Sock Monkey friends have traveled with me on my adventurous journey. These Sock Monkey Friends have been a great comfort to me and even more so knowing that they will be arriving at loving homes. Here in Clarksville I have been greeted with friends who have shared peace with me that I may create in an environment that is still and conducive to my Artistic Soul. Now I can see the Monkey Making take on more of a process. The innergy within the monkeys are growing as the innergy in my spirit continues to evolve. These monkeys are being handcrafted with the sole purpose of spreading peace, love, and joy to everyone.
Sock Monkeys for
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