Most of us are ‘gifted’ with something, and I feel these gifts should be shared to better our world. To illustrate this idea I pushed a 120yr. old sewing machine down the runway and theatrically sewed bags together and then gave them away. This is my hope for heaven, when I can finally make things for the pure enjoyment of their creation. And then give them away.
I am a creative person, at times I become absorbed with inspiration. It brings passion. It brings challenges. It takes sleep away...I become a factory of imagination. The models were the workers in my head.
My first runway show was a collaboration with two clothing designers, Julie Hebb and Tyler Wilson. For the finale I dressed in a suit made of seat belts and dragged the developmental bags of my practice up and down the runway. This was an illustration of the challenges of creative pursuits.
I have tried to sign, date, and number every bag since the beginning. At the David Robinson Gallery we celebrated a landmark number with a live auction of the 1000th bag and three other exclusive pieces. I also gathered a collection of past creations as a retrospective. Fifty percent of the sales went to a charity called the Dalit Freedom Network.
I collaborated with some of Canada’s foremost First Nations artists; John Powell, Robyn Sparrow, and Anthony Hunt. We created bags for drumsticks that sounded the beginning of the opening ceremonies. Working with these masters showed me that refined craft always has value, even in a world of mass-market production.
The guitar strap for Neil Young was especially exciting because I was entrusted to design it myself (excluding the symbols etched into the surface). I also initiated the idea to design and create its presentation case. It was an honour to create a piece for a music legend that was used on the world’s Olympic stage.
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